Before we start, let’s do a quick recap: what is the cloud? When we strip it down, there actually is no such thing as a floating foggy balloon in the sky that processes all our data. The truth is that data is still physically stored and processed by companies who offer cloud storage computing. So there is no cloud, it’s just someone else’s computer.
Now that we’ve cleared that, let’s dive into the matter. ‘The cloud’, it might be candidate for the buzzword of 2022, but is it the one and only possibility to go forward in automated sports video production? This blog explains the differences and forms a guideline for deciding whether you should choose a cloud solution or a hardware on site solution.
Sure, using a cloud solution has some wonderful pro’s
Low investment pay for usage
The initial investment costs are low. A cloud solution is a lot cheaper than a computer on site. Also with the cloud, you have the possibility to pay per minute, per week or per month, or basically: pay for what you use. A nice-to-have when your recordings are unpredictable in numbers, or you don’t have a clear overview on the recording hours per month/year.
Easy to upgrade
With a cloud solution it is fairly easy to ‘upgrade’ hardware when newer (more demanding) models or features become available. With the cloud you don’t buy hardware, you buy speed per minute and only just the amount you need. So the cloud has optimized speed and performance, where hardware on site is just hardware on site.
To have peace of mind: with the cloud you don’t need to worry about updates, maintenance or security – you always have the latest, greatest software.
Technology is evolving, and with that evolution, the ‘amount of speed per euro’ increases so the cost per performance unit is lower in 5 years from now. Simply said: over time you (most probably) get more power for your dime.
Plug and play
With the cloud it is plug and play: the software is fully managed and updates are done automatically. Note: hardware on site solutions can be plug & pay in the future too… So keep that in mind when choosing your weapon of choice.
Scale, Scaling, Scalest
Right, with the cloud you’re able to scale. Fast. And big. And with minimum effort. Also, you can scale down if you like. With the cloud you are in charge.
Peak demand adjustments
During your peak demands, the cloud has most flexibility. Nice to have during those national championship matches and spontaneously arranged tournaments.
Bring your own cloud
Another nice feature of a cloud solution is that you can ‘bring your own cloud’, which makes you less dependent on hardware suppliers and you can use those quiet moments for other cloud activities.
But there are still a ton of reasons to use local hardware on site
No extra costs per recording
First off: with an installation on site, there are no extra costs per recording. If recordings are booming because of those nationals, you’ll be happy you have your hardware on site and enjoy your low costs per minute.
No extra costs in case of multiple feature demand per site
Also, when there is a multipurpose demand on site where different features are being used, you don’t have to pay the extra mile.
No extra costs when altering between multiple sport fields
If a sports venue has multiple fields, you can use one server to alter between them. This way you maximize the use of one server.
Overall lowest costs for high-intensity long-term demand
A basic rule of thumb: the higher the intensity and the longer-term the demand, the lower the costs for a server on site.
That damn internet connection!
Another advantage of hardware on site, is the ability to stream to a local clubhouse, also when there is no, or limited, internet connection. With a cloud solution it can only be done with a good internet connection, and if you choose to do it, it‘ll cost you extra. Also, your recording won’t fail if the internet connection is interrupted (the full recording is always stored on HDD). So a local solution is suitable for remote locations with slow or even unreliable connections.
Possibility to download at a later point in time
Last but not least, the data can be downloaded at a later point in time, whereas a cloud solution doesn’t save the data unless you pay for it.
The options are there but choosing the right way of processing is key to a successful automated production. Know your market, location and expected recording hours and don’t let the buzzword fool you in making the right decision!