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New video production study uncovers cloud native cost efficiencies over lift-and-shift cloud

Blackbird plc, the technology licensor, developer and seller of the market-leading cloud native video editing platform, Blackbird, and leading research consultancy, Caretta Research, announce the launch of a new video industry study – ‘Going native: production in the cloud’.

The rapid adoption of cloud-based media production workflows for remote working and collaboration during the Covid-19 pandemic has led to the proliferation of higher costs and inefficient workflows. That is one of the headline findings of a new study by Caretta Research, in partnership with Blackbird, which also identifies how a more transformational approach to cloud-native workflows can unlock a new era of cost effective multi-platform operations.

The study, Going native: production in the cloud, also finds that the rush to cloud and remote working has too often been tactical, involving the lift-and-shift of legacy tools and workflows.

While this is enabling short-term operational benefits, and kept the industry working during the pandemic it has frequently led to media operations missing out on the true potential of cloud-enabled live and post-production.

Key areas of increased cost and inefficiencies from lift-and-shift cloud identified in the report include:

  • Higher infrastructure costs where static cloud compute instances are used rather than elastic cloud-native services.
  • Inflated cloud storage costs where storage tiers are used inefficiently or content is duplicated across workflows.
  • Excessive cloud egress bandwidth charges where content is repeatedly transferred in and out of the cloud.
  • However, in the next step of transformation, a new generation of flexible and collaborative cloud-native technology is being deployed. Camera-to-cloud workflows are bringing tools and creative users to the content rather than requiring the content to be moved around to the users. Live and post-production for TV, streaming and multiple digital endpoints are delivered by internal and external users able to access a single source of content and shared tools.

The new report builds on industry research conducted by Caretta Research with Blackbird, which found that, despite 90% of video users adopting cloud production and remote editing, most of this is still being carried out using old-school inefficient and insecure workflows — with 65% of users moving original high-res media files around the internet to support remote editing workflows, and only 27% of remote editors making use of a cloud-native browser-based production platform like Blackbird.

Robert Ambrose, Caretta Research’s Co-Founder and Managing Director, who conducted the research said: “It’s clear from our extensive conversations with production operations and technology leaders that we’re at the start of the next big transition: from remote lift and shift cloud production to cloud-native production. We expect to see more and more content going directly from cameras to the cloud, and both live and post-production happening there. That not only creates efficiencies, but it’s an imperative for handling fast-turnaround content efficiently for multiple platforms.”

Blackbird plc CEO, Ian McDonough, added: “We believe the clear direction of travel for media supply chains is from on premise to cloud. However, the pace of change is sometimes hindered by industry perceptions of latency, limited functionality and high cost. The term bill shock has become more familiar to some media companies in the last few years. The beauty of cloud native systems, like Blackbird, is that the user is able to perform advanced editing functions at up to four times the speed of an on premise system and at a Total Cost of Ownership of 35% less than lift and shift alternatives. As the future looks to be cloud, it needs to be cloud native.” BCS Bureau

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