RealNetworks, Inc. Monday unveiled RealSystem iQ, a new foundational architecture for digital media delivery. The standards-based RealSystem iQ is designed to increase the reliability of Internet broadcasts, scale to the largest audiences possible, and provide flexibility and cost-effectiveness for media delivery network deployments.
“RealSystem iQ is another big step forward toward our longstanding goal of turning the Internet into the next great mass medium,” said Rob Glaser, Chairman and C.E.O. of RealNetworks, Inc. “By enabling peer-to-peer networks of streaming servers, RealSystem iQ results in Internet broadcasts that are smarter, faster and simply better — and it sets the stage for digital media delivery to become a true mass phenomenon.”
“With RealSystem iQ, RealNetworks clearly is taking a major step forward in providing a more reliable way to deliver digital media to vastly larger audiences,” said David Bishop, President and C.O.O. of MGM Home Entertainment. “With the largest library of filmed entertainment in the world, MGM Home Entertainment is excited about advancements in digital media delivery that will allow us to deliver the kind of high-quality media experience our consumers have come to expect.”
Content delivery networks deploying include Deutsche Telekom, Digital Island, Enron Broadband Services, iBEAM, Intel IMS, Madge.web, Mirror Image Internet, NET-36 (a PamAmSat Company), and Speedera. Technology companies supporting RealSystem iQ include Adobe Systems, Avid Technology, CacheFlow, EMC, F5 Networks, Hewlett Packard, IBM, Inktomi, Intel, Lucent Technologies, Macromedia, Network Appliance, SecureMedia, and Sun Microsystems.
“AOL has deployed the RealSystem software through our network to provide a high-quality audio/video experience for our members,” said Terry Laber, AOL Vice President for Systems Operations. “We’re excited about the new innovations RealNetworks continues to bring to digital media delivery.”
“RealNetworks is the clear technological leader in providing digital media delivery systems,” said Hans Wehner, Vice President Multimedia Distribution Services, Deutsche Telekom AG. “We are excited to offer the quality of RealSystem iQ to our content customers in the future.”
RealSystem iQ operates at various levels to eliminate congestion in the “middle of the network.” Instead of relying on origin servers to distribute media streams hierarchically to edge servers and then to consumers, RealSystem iQ with Neuralcast Technology creates honeycombs of distributed interconnected servers, empowering all servers to broadcast into the network, receive content from any other server, and deliver media to end consumers. Neuralcast Technology provides a uniform foundation for routing media from one server to many via standard network protocols. In addition, the architecture of RealSystem iQ can enable the transport and delivery of multiple media types.
RealSystem iQ supports both satellite and terrestrial media delivery within one distributed network architecture. Media content can be transmitted up to a satellite and then multicast simultaneously to RealSystem Servers located at ISPs and other content delivery locations.
“RealSystem iQ’s ability to seamlessly support satellite and terrestrial transmissions is an important part of our implementation of streaming media via the NET-36 satellite to edge content delivery network,” said Bill Moses, CEO of NET-36, a PamAmSat Company. “With greater streaming capability and reliability, RealSystem iQ’s Neuralcast technology provides a superior system of digital media delivery.”
RealSystem iQ enables content delivery networks to variably distribute stream capacity at times of heavy traffic and adjust to spikes in usage.
“Developing an infrastructure for Internet broadcasting that is capable of reaching a worldwide audience both reliably and cost effectively, presents a huge challenge to network operators,”
said Jonathan Schwartz, senior vice president of corporate strategy and planning, Sun Microsystems, Inc. “With up to twice the performance of previous versions, RealSystem iQ for our family of Sun Enterprise servers and storage delivers the performance and quality-of-service the market demands.”
RealSystem iQ supports more than 45 media types, including RealAudio, RealVideo, Apple’s QuickTime, Flash 4, and streaming MP3. RealSystem iQ’s distributed architecture supports network configurations ranging from clusters for serving content to dense local populations, to national and international networks.
“RealSystem iQ’s ability to deliver multiple media types, especially Apple’s QuickTime, shows true leadership from RealNetworks and is invaluable to us,” said Cos Santullo, president and CEO, at Mirror Image Internet. “As a result of our partnership with RealNetworks, Mirror Image is excited to deploy RealSystem iQ across our global Content Access Point network to offer customers an attractive business model and provide end users with the best media experience possible.”
RealNetworks Monday also introduced RealSystem Proxy 8. RealSystem Proxy 8, another key component of RealSystem iQ, allows enterprises and ISPs to manage inbound bandwidth, suited for organizations that have a large amount of digital media flowing into or over their network. RealSystem Proxy 8 is available directly from RealNetworks and from several Certified RealSystem Compatible licensees of the RealSystem Proxy SDK.
*John Townley is Streaming Media Correspondent for internetnews.com, a property of Internet.com.