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Alcatel-Lucent Pitches Tool For Measuring Online Video Quality

Alcatel-Lucent has developed a hosted video analytics service -- AppGlide -- designed to give service providers video quality metrics about over-the-top video traversing their networks so they can sell enhanced content distribution services to the likes of Netflix or YouTube.

The AppGlide service measures "quality of experience" of free or paid online video, using multiple cross-correlated metrics. The solution combines data from video player plug-ins, user agents, content-delivery network devices and routers.

The resulting data shows the volume and quality of video being delivered and helps service providers monitor, and isolate CDN performance, according to AppGlide general manager Mark "Buck" Peterson.

"It's absolutely a sales tool for service providers," he said.

Service providers want to be able to show third-party providers, "‘your current quality of experience is X, and if you are on our network it would be Y,' but they don't have the metrics," Peterson said.

The AppGlide service is available for trial now, Peterson said.

The ability to correlate data lets AppGlide determine, for example, that viewers stopped watching a video after only 10 minutes and that it coincided with poor quality-of-experience, Peterson said. That information will then let the service provider "take very specific remedial steps."

AppGlide was incubated startup-style under Alcatel-Lucent's Ventures group, which is part of the Bell Labs R&D division, while the telecom equipment company's worldwide sales force will be pitching the product.
About 30 employees work on the AppGlide team. Peterson is based in Dallas with a few others, working with a team of engineers in Antwerp, Belgium, where the idea for the product originated.

More information on AppGlide is available at www.alcatel-lucent.com/appglide.