MEDIA & ENTERTAINMENT, OTT, GAMING

India’s Public Broadcasting Service Completes Digital Transformation

Aims to provide innovative digital content formats and better engage its target audience

NEW DELHI—September 01, 2022—  Prasar Bharati News Services (PBNS), the digital arm of India’s public broadcasting service Prasar Bharati, is now using a cloud service to host and scale its expansive network, which offers over 240 live radio channels, including live news and entertainment programs.

In moving to the AWS Cloud, PBNS now has the compute capacity, reliability, and scalability to deliver news seamlessly to over 894 million viewers and listeners in more than 190 countries. Through this digital transformation, PBNS aims to provide innovative digital content formats and better engage its target audience, especially younger viewers and listeners.

“We are confident that our cloud-first approach to creating, transforming, and delivering digital content quickly, enabled by AWS, will help us continue to make information more accessible and relevant to the growing requirements of our audience. Using the cloud, PBNS drives its mission to be a trusted public broadcaster by innovating our operations, driving content reforms, and delivery,” said Samir Kumar, Head, PBNS and Digital Platform, Prasar Bharati.

“India’s media industry is transforming rapidly as the public consumes more digital news content, such as videos and podcasts, online, and on mobile apps. Media and entertainment organizations are among the major users of cloud services,” said Pankaj Gupta, Leader – Public Sector Enterprises and Government, Healthcare, AISPL, AWS India and South Asia. “With AWS, Prasar Bharati can change the way it creates, manages, and distributes content to audiences—both old and new—locally and globally.”

Prior to moving to AWS, PBNS hosted its applications with a co-location IT provider and experienced high latency, which caused performance and availability issues, such as website downtime and disrupted video streaming. This significantly affected the distribution of news and the audience experience. PBNS needed a comprehensive set of cloud capabilities, from scalable compute and storage resources to content production, management, and archiving, to transform the way it delivers content, such as live-streaming content and sharing videos across platforms like YouTube.

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PBNS Cloud-Enabled Services

With AWS, PBNS can effectively host and scale its NewsOnAir website, which publishes national and international news in eight languages, live radio and TV podcasts, and the ‘PBNS Daily Magazine’ to its audience around the world.

The organisation also runs its News Data Management System (NDMS) on AWS, which is a platform built by PBNS to categorize, archive, and share content across regional news units, to improve collaboration between internal news units, social media teams, and external news agencies based across India. As a content management system, NDMS aims to make it easy for news reporters and stringers to quickly upload their news, and for news organisations to publish news faster. Currently, 54 regional news units are using NDMS to speed up access to the latest news and deliver information faster to audiences.

Implementation

AWS Select Partner, Arsenal Infosolutions Private Limited, a managed services provider with a strong focus on cloud services in the public sector, has supported PBNS in the successful migration and modernization of NDMS and the NewsOnAir application with AWS to cater to the required performance and scale. Arsenal Infosolutions helped the broadcaster implement Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) for the resizable compute capacity to scale its media workload according to viewer and listener demand.

Arsenal Infosolutions also deployed Amazon CloudFront, a content delivery network that securely delivers content with low latency and high transfer speeds. With Amazon CloudFront, NDMS can now handle and distribute static and dynamic content securely and rapidly to help facilitate information sharing among Prasar Bharati’s news units. This empowers NDMS to quickly and accurately coordinate and deliver critical news to news reporters and publishers, who in turn, distribute digital content to millions of viewers and listeners in just a few milliseconds. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic spike in 2021, PBNS was able to provide timely updates about “Oxygen Express,” a government of India initiative that delivered critical supplies of medical oxygen across India through the railways.

PBNS also relies on Amazon Relational Database Service (RDS), which makes it simple to setup, operate, and scale databases in the cloud; Amazon Elastic File System (EFS) that scales the file system automatically as files are added and removed, without the need for management or provisioning; Amazon API Gateway, which makes it easy for developers to create, publish, monitor, maintain, and secure APIs at any scale; and Amazon S3, an object storage service offering industry-leading scalability, data availability, security, and performance.

Brian Pereira

Brian Pereira is an Indian journalist and editor based in Mumbai. He is the Founding Editor of Digital Creed, which he founded in 2015. A technology buff, former computer instructor, and software developer, Brian has 28 years of journalism experience (since 1994). He is sound and confident about his knowledge of business technology concepts. And he is a believer in continual education/learning. Brian is the former Editor of CHIP and InformationWeek magazines (India). He has written hundreds of technology articles for India's leading newspaper groups such as The Times of India and Indian Express Newspapers (among others). And he has conducted more than 300 industry interviews during his journalism career. Brian also writes on Aviation, cybersecurity, startups, and topics directed at small and medium businesses. He achieved certifications from the EC-Council (Certified Secure Computer User) and from IBM (Basics of Cloud Computing). Apart from those, he has successfully completed many courses on Content Marketing and Business Writing. Follow Brian on Twitter (@creed_digital) and LinkedIn.

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