RealTime IT News

Madge.web, RealNetworks to Launch European Network

Madge.web Tuesday partnered with RealNetworks to build, operate and market a European managed network for streaming media.

Madge.web is constructing an Internet overlay network and broadcast operation facilities in Europe to offer similar services to the existing Real Broadcast Network (RBN) in the U.S. The new network, to be known as the Madge Broadcast Network (MBN) powered by RealNetworks, is designed to serve both European and U.S. content providers wishing to distribute their streaming media in Europe.

The Madge Broadcast Network and the Real Broadcast Network are expected to be interconnected to allow content to be exchanged in both directions.

"Today's IP-centric companies are recognizing that the market for streamed content is really heating up and is poised to have a break out year," commented Alex Benik, associate analyst, data communications, The Yankee Group.

"Distributed content delivery networks like the Real Broadcast Network and now the Madge Broadcast Network are necessary to deliver the quality of services that companies on both sides of the Atlantic are demanding."

Supporting Madge.web's existing Web services to the media, publishing and financial industries, the MBN will extend to European consumers and content providers the kind of streaming media facilities which are currently available in the U.S. MBN, powered by RealNetworks and delivered by Madge.web, will be used for streaming media ranging from large scale Internet events through to corporate presentations, shareholder meetings, advertising and entertainment programming.

A new European broadcasting center will serve as the programming hub for European broadcasts from which live video, audio and multimedia feeds will be encoded, stored and transmitted. From there the content will be fed across Madge.web's pan-European IP network to the major Internet exchange points across Europe to provide high levels of streaming content for both business-to-business and consumer applications.

In addition, the planned interconnect facilities with RBN in the U.S. will create a multi-continent network, allowing content providers to reach a wider audience as well as to carry out international broadcast planning, program sharing and audience reporting.

RealNetworks and Madge.web have agreed on a joint marketing program to promote the MBN services.

MBN powered by RealNetworks is scheduled to go live in the second quarter of next year. Madge.web and RealNetworks plan to announce further details on the service offering early next year.