October 24, 2011. Tektronix has announced its Sentry® digital content monitor now enables cable television operators to ensure the quality of their live and on-demand services delivered using adaptive streaming through the quick identification and diagnosis of video and audio quality issues that can impact viewers’ quality of experience (QoE).
“Cable operators are realizing as they utilize adaptive streaming technology to compete with the growing number of over-the-top (OTT) providers, that an exceptional QoE is the best way to ensure the superiority of their services,” said Eben Jenkins, general manager for the video product line at Tektronix. “Sentry’s combination of advanced audio and video quality monitoring capabilities and proven performance make it an ideal solution for ensuring adaptive streaming quality and is another demonstration of our commitment to ensuring that Sentry addresses operators’ most pressing QoE requirements.”
The key to Sentry’s new adaptive streaming monitoring capabilities is its ability to perform its unique Perceptual Video Quality (PVQ) analysis on video streams encoded in the H.264 codec used for adaptive streaming. PVQ enables Sentry to identify video artifacts that are due to over-compression, which commonly happens with motion-intensive programs like sports and action movies. Such over-compression artifacts are virtually undetectable by simply looking for packet loss and represent a major threat to video quality.
In an adaptive streaming monitoring application, Sentry examines H.264 video streams immediately after they have been transcoded from MPEG-2 and just prior to them being fragmented and encrypted. This is a critical point in the adaptive streaming process as transcoding can introduce QoE-impacting video errors that are virtually undetectable after encryption. Simultaneously with the H.264 monitoring, Sentry examines the accompanying audio programs encoded in the AAC codec predominantly used in adaptive streaming. This combination ensures that operators can detect video and audio issues that will propagate downstream and degrade customers’ viewing experience.
Tektronix will demonstrate Sentry’s H.264 video PVQ, and AAC audio QoE and loudness monitoring capability, and other advanced capabilities at the upcoming Cable-Tec Expo, November 15-17, in Atlanta.