During the pandemic, the media and entertainment (M&E) industry,Â like every other industry, accelerated its digital transformation efforts. The M&E business is eager to embrace cloud computing to manage petabytes of data and deliver high-quality films. Anand Akela, VP of product and solutions marketing at Nutanix, outlines why IT modernization has become a top priority for the M&E industry..
A revolution is sweeping the media and entertainment (M&E) industry as Hollywood reconfigures its culture and workforce post-pandemic. While the industry is likely to return to its traditional production methods of packing studios with casts and crews, remote editing and post-production will remain an available option for most filmmakers and will likely see an uptick in popularity. In fact, Variety reported that ViacomCBS is implementing a hybrid work program for 80% of its 20,000 employees to spend some time of their workweek at home, and other organizations are likely to follow suit.Â
Cloud adoption is leading this pivot towards post-pandemic norms. According to Nutanix’s Third Annual Enterprise Cloud Index (ECI), the M&E industry leads in the exclusive use of multiple public cloud services and is ahead in deployments of hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). While other industries lag in their digital transformation efforts, the M&E industry is eager to embrace cloud solutions to support the management of petabytes of data.Â
Cloud The Innovation Factor
M&E is infamous for generating unprecedented amounts of data. Everything from animation, high definition camera footage and visual effects to high-resolution audio is contributing to the overwhelming growth of data. As these features inevitably become more advanced, the services to manage this data must also be robust enough, so data size doesn’t hinder workflow. Legacy IT architectures are not able to keep up with the pace of this growth, and M&E companies recognize that.Â
According to the ECI, nearly 58% of respondents reported they’ve either fully deployed or are in the process of deploying HCI, which is nearly 10% greater than the global average. Another 32% plan to do so in the next 12 to 24 months, and the use of traditional data centers is expected to drop from 16% to 2% over the next year as the industry invests heavily in cloud services. Modern, cloud-enabled HCI data centers provide M&E companies a great solution to leverage the agility of cloud while controlling costs, so it’s no surprise that this industry is ahead of global averages in their IT modernization efforts.Â
Cloud platforms, whether private or public, outperform legacy infrastructure by offering scalability and flexibility that meets the needs of a demanding industry that relies entirely on consumer satisfaction. With people stuck at home during the pandemic, streaming and gaming became more popular than we’d ever imagined, forcing the M&E industry to swiftly respond by churning out new content for consumers worldwide. Although, this trend shows no slowing in momentum even with major production companies producing more films than ever before. Customer satisfaction heavily relies on studios’ availability to the cloud, which is a primary driver of cloud decisions for the industry. When asked why modernizing their IT was a priority, twice as many respondents in the M&E industry said to better support customers (54%) than to save on costs (27%).
Alliance of Creativity and Technology
Shifting to the cloud not only allows for better production but also better talent. Modernized IT and cloud functionalities permit collaborative workflows from anywhere in the world, allowing artists and creators to collaborate across workflows in real-time. And while the pandemic certainly helped spark a migration to the cloud, with nearly 80% of respondents in the M&E industry saying the pandemic caused them to view IT more strategically in their organizations, M&E organizations are seeing benefits beyond just remote work and higher outputs of production.Â
Cloud storage and HCI are here to stay for the M&E as the model provides benefits that spark innovation within the industry, and 83% of respondents in the industry claim it to be their ideal IT architecture. With the way data is growing, there are no limits on how creativity and technology will work hand-in-hand to produce entertainment we’ve never seen before.