If you use Microsoft Sharepoint in your organisation, you may be aware of some shortcomings concerning large files, especially video / media files. The issues vary from a file-size limit of 2GB to a lack of simple playback options without moving entire files to your desktop and then finding that the format isn't supported by your system.
Microsoft is looking to rectify this with Office 365 Video (or O365V), which recently had its first release.
Office video storage issue
Video use is increasing massively in all organisations as more people use it as a medium to get their message to their users, both internally and externally. More and more organisations are waking up to the reality that media files, especially video, are large, cumbersome and cause issues for IT departments and their networks if not handled properly.
O365V (also known as a VCMS – video content management system) is designed to give a YouTube-like UI, where users can drag-and-drop video files. The files are then converted (transcoded) for streaming to desktop and laptop devices using Flash on a corporate network. The videos can then be searched-for and commented-on by other users and the portal can be co-branded with a corporate logo, meaning that it still looks like the Office 365 experience, but with your logo added too.
Imagen Enterprise Video Platform
Imagen is a fully integrated media asset management system, designed for long-term preservation of your media, while giving access through a completely customisable web-portal, with optional corporate single-sign-on to the system using an IDP (identity provider).
Imagen offers a number of methods of ingesting media, from a simple drag-and-drop web interface through DVB TV capture to an API, enabling you to automate from another system.
Imagen then stores the original media, no matter how large, transcodes the files, creating proxies and thumbnails as required and making the media available to stream from any web-enabled device (including tablets and smartphones) using HTML5.
Imagen can also import side-car XML files and other metadata, giving you a wealth of data to search against when looking to find your media, and giving you the options to comment, make collections of and even create clips from the media – all from the comfort of your favourite web browser.
You can also fully customise your Imagen portal to match your existing website or brand.
The Office 365 Video uservoice
forum has a number of votes for features that people would like to see in O365V – but many of the most-requested features are already included in Imagen including:
Embed a video to other pages
You can embed an Imagen video into another site simply by copying and pasting the embed code, as well as being able to share a link by email or social media.
Allow custom metadata fields
Your Imagen database is completely customisable with whichever fields you require in any order.
Viewer analytics and reporting
Our professional services team can work with you to create bespoke reports including which records have been viewed or media downloaded.
Support mobile devices
Our player uses HTML5 to enable video streaming to any modern web browser, including iPads and iPhones.
Access for external users
While some clients do choose an internal-only Imagen system, most use it for both internal and external purposes. Individual record and media permissions can be setup to meet even the strictest user permission models.
Support file size larger than 2GB
There is no limit to the file size of media that you can upload to Imagen.
Download various video quality options
In Imagen you can define the formats and quality that you want to make available, and which users or groups are allowed access to those renditions.
Tag specific segments / Make the video content searchable
On ingest Imagen allows you to import time-based annotations (e.g. from XML) or simply add / edit them through the web interface to highlight reference points in a video. These annotations are searchable and clicking on one will instantly play from that point in the file.
Allow permissions to be set on the video itself
Imagen gives you control over permissions for the media item, record, or collection of media items, allowing you to only share what you want to share.
Imagen can be styled to match your current organisation branding theme and colours. If you have an in-house web team then they can do this, or our professional services web team can work with you to create the look you require. Check out our case studies such as the IMG Sports Video Archive
If video is just a small part of what you need to do with an existing Sharepoint system, then Office 365 Video may be the answer you are looking for.
However, for serious video and media storage applications, and the addition of long-term preservation or archiving of your files, why not give Imagen a try?