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Communications and networking specialist Cisco announced the
Enterprise Content Delivery System (ECDS), a set of video distribution
products that provide a way to manage the video load on the wide area
network (WAN) and is also designed to help control the cost of
extending video applications across the organization. As a key video
infrastructure component of the Cisco medianet architecture, ECDS
consists of hardware appliances and Cisco Wide Area Application
Services (WAAS) virtual blade software. ECDS is available globally with
pricing starting at $4,395.

The appliances and software work together to help organizations
distribute live video content via streaming or multicasting, and,
on-demand video via caching and prepositioning.  ECDS also
provides an IT-friendly management system for easy setup,
configuration, maintenance, and monitoring of video. ECDS can also help
eliminate delays in video playback, intermittent video interruptions,
pixilation and other issues associated with video delivery and
reception.

ECDS helps optimize live and on demand one-way video content for a
variety of applications such as organizational communications,
training, events or executive broadcasts. IT managers can use ECDS to
scale live video streaming without having to turn on multicast. For
example, instead of sending 10 video streams of a broadcast to 10 users
at a branch office, ECDS sends one stream to the branch and
automatically splits that stream at the branch into one for each end
user.

On-demand video content, like employee training videos or recorded
telepresence meetings, can be pushed out across the WAN during off-peak
hours, and then cached locally for access by multiple users. ECDS is
comprised of three deployment options: The Cisco Media Delivery Engine
(MDE) 1100 and the MDE 3100 are network appliances that scale to 500
and 5,000 concurrent users respectively. The third option is the MDE
50WVB, a software virtual blade that supports up to 200 simultaneous
users on a WAAS appliance.

"Our customer was looking to offer high quality video-on-demand for
students and teachers as a way to share knowledge,” said Steven Reese,
director of solutions marketing at unified communications and data
security specialist Nexus IS. “The Cisco Enterprise Content Delivery
System proved to be the ideal solution to deploy video pervasively
throughout the school district on their existing network
infrastructure.  We’re excited that ECDS enables rich media
experiences for our customers to take advantage of the power of both
live and on-demand video streaming."