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AWS Powers Hulu Live TV To Strengthen Media Cloud Credentials

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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AWS SUMMIT NEW YORK: Amazon secured Hulu Live TV as a customer while it also signs up financial analytics firm FICO

US video streaming service Hulu has chosen Amazon Web Services (AWS) to power a new over the top (OTT) live TV service. 

Hulu Live TV started operations back in May, and includes more than 50 live channels. It is one of a number of services looking to capitalise on a growing desire to ‘cut the cable’ in the US, where cable TV companies often have a monopoly in towns and cities, leading to higher prices for television services. 

Hulu itself launched in 2008, initially as a common catchup platform for major US broadcasters, but it has since expanded into a subscription service with its own original content. 

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AWS Hulu 

However it recognised that live TV would represent a different technical challenge to on-demand distribution. For example, a live sports event will mean more people watching at any one time, whereas a TV show will have more staggered demand. 

Hulu said it chose AWS to help deal with such spikes in demand and ensure that potential customers were not put off by a poor experience that would encourage them to stay with their cable provider or instead choose one of the competing OTT platforms. 

“Hulu is redefining the television experience for viewers and we have set the technical bar much higher by bringing live TV into the mix,” said Rafael Soltanovich head of software development at Hulu. “We selected AWS as our cloud provider because of its leading breadth and depth of capabilities.  

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“The elasticity, agility, and security they provide were key to deploying our new service. Putting our stream ingest, repackaging, DVR storage, and origin serving on AWS freed us from having to build out data centers and led to a faster time to market with higher availability.” 

AWS is keen to use the Hulu partnership as evidence of the platform’s media credentials, with the BBC, Channel 4, Netflix and Spotify among its customers. Indeed, Netflix completed an eight year migration to the cloud in 2016, while Amazon Prime Video obviously uses the AWS infrastructure. 

Away from the media industry, AWS has also secured the custom of financial analytics firm FICO, which is moving its Decision Management Suite (DMS) to the cloud and will migrate other applications over the next three years. 

“When we started to plan for our digital transformation, time to value, velocity, scalability, cost control and security were our top priorities. AWS’s experience with other companies in highly regulated industries, combined with its industry leading technology, made AWS the obvious choice for FICO,” said Jeet Kaul, head of engineering at FICO. 

“Today, we’re taking a cloud-first approach to development with AWS as our cloud infrastructure provider. This will allow us to get out of the business of building data centers, so we can continue our 60-plus-year history of pioneering data and analytics software to help businesses improve the precision, consistency, and agility of their complex decisions.” 

The customer wins were made public at AWS Summit in New York, where Amazon also revealed a number of new features that it hopes will keep it ahead of public cloud rivals including Microsoft, Google and IBM. 

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