Continuous evolution of telecommunications networks brings end users huge benefits in terms of more advanced and sophisticated services they can enjoy. IP television (IPTV) and Over-The-Top (OTT) take television to the next level adding convenience through time-shifted programming and interactivity through VoD (Video on demand). International Telecommunication Union defines IPTV as "multimedia services such as television/video/audio/text/graphics/data delivered over IP based networks and providing the required level of quality of service and experience, security, interactivity and reliability."
MERA’s involvement in IPTV domain dates back to 2005 when MERA developed a feature-rich end-to-end IPTV prototype streaming the following types of content:
- live and on-demand video,
- parental control,
- electronic program guide,
- interactive voting,
- content and subscriber management services.
The prototype was based on Windows technologies listed below:
- Microsoft .NET,
- Microsoft Connected Services Framework (CSF 3.0),
- Microsoft Media Services,
- Microsoft IIS,
- Web Services Enhancements (WSE 3.0),
- Microsoft ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX Extensions,
- MS SQL Server 2005,
- Windows Media Center.
Since 2007, MERA has been actively involved in embedded software R&D (at all stages, including development, maintenance, testing and support) and professional services (integration of IPTV STB client software with middleware of various IPTV back-end manufacturers) for standard definition (SD) and high-definition (HD) IPTV set-top-boxes (STB) for various Linux platforms, such as Meego, STLinux and Android.
MERA has accomplished the following projects for IPTV STBs:
- integration of IPTV STB client software with middleware of various IPTV backend manufacturers;
- interactive web-based client;
- complete DLNA/UPnP enabler for IPTV STB from scratch;
- DLNA media player/controller with QT4-based graphic user interface;
- DLNA plug-in over generic Netscape Plug-in API (NPAPI) for different browsers;
- integration and support of various CAS/DRM components;
- RTSP proxy;
- JVM integration to STB’s I/O system using DirectFB with graphics acceleration support;
- audio/video telephony application architecture development;
- winning over STB testing support at IPTV operator’s competition;
- test automation suite for fully automated STB testing.