Sky Italia Taps into Power and Flexibility of Imagine Communications’ Microservices Open Zenium Programme

Sky Italia Taps into Power and Flexibility of Imagine Communications’ Microservices Open Zenium Programme
September 15, 2017 Meriam Khan

[15 September]

Italian service provider customises encoding workflow using Imagine’s open microservices platform

Imagine Communications, empowering the media and entertainment industry through transformative innovation, is working with Sky Italia through the company’s recently announced Open Zenium™ programme to enrich the European operator’s compression operations with the addition of artificial intelligence capabilities. The customisations, made possible through Open Zenium, are expected to enable Sky Italia to automatically optimize the quality of content and reduce costs through the insertion of machine learning directly into the data flow, bringing new and unique functionality to an existing product.

The Open Zenium programme is designed to stimulate innovation through collaboration by sharing source code of the Zenium microservices library with a community of Imagine customers and partners. Zenium is the company’s pure microservices platform for building smarter, more efficient and futureproof media operations. Open Zenium puts the power of microservices in the hands of innovative media companies, empowering them with the ability to customise, optimize, modify, design and deploy next-generation workflows and services of unparalleled efficiency, scalability and performance.

“We immediately recognised the power and potential of the Open Zenium programme to streamline and enrich our services,” said Massimo Bertolotti, Director of Innovation and Multimedia Distribution at Sky Italia. ”By integrating our unique technology into Imagine’s microservices-based solutions we are now able to introduce technology enhancements that improve our ability to meet business objectives much faster and more efficiently than was possible in the past.”

Sky Italia is also one of the first adopters of Selenio One™, Imagine’s next-generation compression platform that offers media companies a single solution for performing a range of encoding, transcoding and related processing operations. Powered by Zenium, Selenio One is a cloud-native solution built on a pure microservices architecture that uses discrete, single-function components that can be updated or even replaced as market conditions require to ensure that media operations are continuously optimised for peak performance and efficiency.

Participation in Open Zenium puts the power to customise Selenio One, as well as other microservices-based solutions from Imagine Communications, in the hands of customers and partners. Through access to the Selenio One platform, Sky Italia was able to incorporate into its encode workflow custom-designed algorithms that employ machine learning to optimize and automate the allocation of resources.

Among the benefits of the customisation project is Sky Italia’s ability to streamline its service chain, eliminating a separate and external function by incorporating it into an existing workflow. A related benefit is associated with the software-only nature of the Selenio One platform. Previously executed in hardware, Sky Italia’s AI-oriented technology can now be employed in essentially any environment, including the cloud, enabling the company to optimize the performance and efficiency of its operations.

Sky Italia and other members of the Advanced level of the Open Zenium programme enjoy access to developer support services, and are assigned a developer ID that allows them to create unique components and register them with the Zenium platform. Open Zenium members also have access to more than a thousand existing microservices components and rigorously tested workflows. An automated testing framework that is part of the open programme also ensures the reliability of customized components.

Speed to market is another major benefit of the customisation capabilities of a microservices architecture. In less than a month of initiating the process through the Open Zenium programme, Sky Italia was able to test and evaluate the newly designed workflows.

“It’s partnerships like the one we have with Sky Italia that drove us to release our Zenium platform under the Open Zenium programme,” said Brick Eksten, Chief Product Officer at Imagine. “We knew that customers would benefit tremendously from having direct access to the flexibility and capabilities of the platform, and they would be able to achieve greater service velocity by being able to directly leverage the power of the Zenium software developer kit. The capabilities enabled by Open Zenium give Sky Italia the ability to directly innovate, integrate and optimize our products for specific use cases, while reducing costs and providing greater control over network functionality.”

The Zenium platform will be featured at IBC2017 in a series of thought-leadership and educational presentations on microservices and cloud-native technologies at Stand 4.AO1 in the RAI Amtrium.

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About Imagine Communications

Imagine Communications empowers the media and entertainment industry through transformative innovation. Broadcasters, networks, video service providers and enterprises around the world rely on our optimised, futureproof, multiscreen video and revenue enablement solutions every day to support their mission-critical operations. Today, nearly half of the world’s video channels traverse our products, and our software solutions drive close to a third of global ad revenue. Through continuous innovation we are delivering the most advanced IP, cloud-enabled, software-defined network and workflow solutions in the industry. Visit for more information, and follow us on Twitter @imagine_comms.