Broadcasting through a pandemic not only presented serious challenges in broadcast workflows, it opened conversations about finding more flexible and diverse ways to create meaningful content. Our studio-centric work paradigm breaks down when we can’t get to the studio, or if the studio is disabled due to natural disaster or other breakdowns. While many broadcasters implemented stop-gap measures allowing talent to work from home, these solutions tend to be “one-off” and don’t address a wider array of business interruption risks.
“Virtualization” has been a buzz-word and a partial solution for broadcasters wishing to back up their physical studios and transmitter links. But virtualization can itself introduce extra maintenance and upkeep, as well as some inefficiencies, that have led to hesitation among broadcasters in implementation.
A new form of virtualization is here - and proven by almost a decade of experience. It’s called “software containerization”. Containerized software is performing the most critical and time-sensitive functions at large organizations like Google, Amazon, Visa, Paypal, and Metlife to name a few. Now, broadcasters can get the same IT efficiencies from containerized infrastructure such as audio mixing consoles, on-air phone systems, audio processing, and virtual broadcast intercoms. These can be “turned up” quickly, licensed only as needed, and installed with diversity and redundancy without redundant costs.
This paper reveals additional rationale for deploying our broadcast infrastructure using efficient software containers. We’ll see how containerized software technology can provide not only convenient day-to-day broadcast infrastructure, but how it’s also perfect for disaster recovery scenarios, important to the promise our industry.