Imagine Delivers Cloud-Native Disaster Recovery to ZEE Entertainment

Imagine Communications has delivered a compact, cloud-native disaster recovery (DR) solution to global content company ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL). The business continuity solution utilises the built-in redundancy capabilities of virtualised and geo-dispersed environments to provide ZEEL with improved protection of its playout operations for considerably less than the cost to build and maintain duplicate facilities.

ZEEL has rolled out a state-of-the-art cloud-based business continuity solution in its DR facility in Mumbai using Imagine Communications’ Versio playout solution and the company’s D-Series automation solution. The backup site supports 15 ZEE channels running on Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) servers across a virtual platform that mirrors the main site. Any changes made to the main system are immediately reflected on the DR system.

“Imagine Communications’ cloud-native business continuity solution helps to ensure that our live channels never go off the air, no matter the unforeseen circumstances we may face during the day-to-day running of our facility,” said Amitabh Kumar, Head of Broadcasting for Zee Network, the parent company of ZEEL. “The virtualised nature of the solution has already allowed ZEEL to realise savings on rack space and power consumption. In addition, the installation’s remote management capabilities help us to reduce resources at the DR site, keeping our opex low.”

A cloud-native approach to DR provides private or public cloud-based restoration of broadcast and video playout operations. More affordable, reliable and easier to manage than traditional business continuity solutions, cloud-native disaster recovery is growing in popularity, with Imagine Communications supporting customers on multiple continents through its Versio solution. Versio is at the heart of ZEEL’s remote facility in Mumbai. Versio, among the industry’s most comprehensive playout solutions, is 100 percent software running on commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) IT platforms. The cloud-native solution is portable to all deployment environments, including premise-based appliance approaches.

In Mumbai, Versio works in tandem with the D-Series playout automation system, a scalable solution that provides device control for linear playout channels and manages the movement of file-based media to multiple delivery platforms. The D-Series Remote Schedule Synchronization (DRSS) feature enables both the primary and backup ZEEL sites to run in sync.

“ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited enjoys a long history with Imagine Communications and is one of the most innovative media companies in the region, and among the first to transition operations to a fully software-centric model utilising COTS equipment,” said Brick Eksten, Chief Product Officer, Imagine Communications. “It is no surprise that ZEEL is one of the first media companies operating in the Indian subcontinent to recognise the cost and efficiency benefits of cloud-native solutions and to identify business continuity operations as a starting point for the adoption of a next-generation architecture.”

Some media companies are adopting cloud-native disaster recovery operations as a first step in the transition of mission-critical operations to virtualised environments, with plans to use the virtualised facilities for launching new channels or hosting existing ones after gaining the proper level of comfort in the performance and reliability of the cloud.

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