September 10, 2010 17:43 ET

BT Collaborates With Cisco to Deliver Online Video Platform

SAN JOSE, CA--(Marketwire - September 10, 2010) -  BT Wholesale has today announced it has chosen Cisco's (NASDAQ: CSCO) award winning Content Delivery System as the 'backbone' for its open online video delivery network -- Content Connect -- designed to improve the experience of watching and listening to digital content on the web.

The Cisco Content Delivery System (CDS) using medianet technologies enables BT Wholesale to establish broadband as a TV platform. Content Connect will deliver digital content to any computer, TV or mobile device on behalf of UK internet service providers giving broadcasters access to a large end user base -- irrespective of service provider or technology.

Many media groups already use content delivery networks but in many cases these services only reach the edge of the ISP network, with the final stage delivered 'over the top' with no guarantees on the quality of service. The collaboration with Cisco helps ensure that BT's next generation Content Connect platform can cache content deep in the broadband network and so deliver it much closer to the end user -- avoiding congested areas of the network. This, in turn, enables broadcasters to provide video content -- and in the future live TV -- with an assured level of service all the way to the viewer, providing uninterrupted access even at peak times. This provides broadcasters with the predictable user experience critical to supporting advertising or pay models.

Simon Orme, BT Wholesale's Strategy Director of Content Services, said: "Our industry is witnessing a significant growth in content delivery over broadband -- driven by the consumption of video services at home, at work and on the move.

"Working with Cisco enables us to offer an efficient, long-term solution and bringing the power of broadband and content together leads to exciting, innovative end user experiences. It will allow all players -- including content service providers -- to extract more value from content services in the future while pleasing end users."

Kip Compton, general manager of video & content platforms business unit at Cisco, added: "Because of the variety of content available on the Internet, consumers are now accustomed to choice; they want to access entertainment content, anytime, anywhere. The Cisco Content Delivery System will help BT work more closely with content providers to meet the demands from today's savvy consumers."

Based on Cisco CDS, BT Wholesale's Content Connect service can offer a UK-wide service with quality of service (QoS) assurance and detailed reporting and analytics on how the customers' content is being consumed. CDS also enables customers using BT Wholesale's platform to monitor network status, and a broad array of details about the broadband user experience -- all available on a single portal-based view. And, security concerns are reduced as content delivery will take place within a private network, avoiding the internet altogether.

BT Wholesale expects to introduce its Content Connect service in early 2011.

Notes to Editors:

  • Content Connect in this release refers to the standard, premium and custom content network delivery (CDN) services BT Wholesale will deliver over Cisco's technology. In addition a basic internet CDN service will be offered.
  • Reflecting the advances being made in the broadcast industry, BT Wholesale has recently brought together its well established media expertise to help deliver content all the way from the camera to end users. It helps media production, broadcast and distribution companies transport their content from A to B wherever they are in the world; enables viewers to interact directly with the programming through real-time voting; delivers quality IPTV services today and is vastly experienced in maximising broadband performance. Bringing all this expertise and experience together, will enable broadcasters to deliver a rich variety of broadcast quality content to end users with Content Connect providing the platform for exciting and innovative end user experiences too.

About BT
BT is one of the world's leading providers of communications solutions and services operating in more than 170 countries. Its principal activities include the provision of networked IT services globally; local, national and international telecommunications services to our customers for use at home, at work and on the move; broadband and internet products and services and converged fixed/mobile products and services. BT consists principally of four lines of business: BT Global Services, Openreach, BT Retail and BT Wholesale.

In the year ended 31 March 2010, BT Group's revenue was £20,911 million.

British Telecommunications plc (BT) is a wholly-owned subsidiary of BT Group plc and encompasses virtually all businesses and assets of the BT Group. BT Group plc is listed on stock exchanges in London and New York. 

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