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Sanoma Video Platform – Uninterrupted entertainment for millions of viewers

Nelonen Media is a diverse and strongly developing broadcasting group reaching more than 90% of Finns. Nelonen’s focus is on major Finnish entertainment, international quality series and top movies, and it is the second biggest commercial media in Finland.

Client objective

Nelonen Media decided to renew their video platform and separate it from the presentation layer, as their videos were consumed by wider range of services and client applications.

The video platform needs also to serve other Sanoma corporation divisions in Finland for their online videos. The platform must handle user logins across all clients, check for the viewing rights of subscription-only videos, and to control the number of open video streams for live sports.

Solution

Video management is a specialised form of content management – and we decided to handle that with a Drupal 7 installation. Drupal connects to Nelonen Media ERP system for incoming video and television program data, and also allows Sanoma personnel to upload and manage video content within the system.

For performance and availability reasons, all content of the Drupal is indexed to a separate high-performance setup running Node.js and MongoDB. This system serves all data to all clients, such as Ruutu.fi, Nelonen.fi, Ruutu iOS, Android, Playstation, Apple TV and a collection of SmartTV applications, HS.fi, and Iltasanomat.fi. It also handles the needed traffic for handling live sports event, such as score data and video stream control.

Video file handling is done on a separate platform running custom software developed for the purpose by Exove.

The technology selection is Nginx, Drupal 7, MySQL and SOLR for the content management, Node.js, MongoDB for accelerated data delivery, and Nginx for distributing binaries. A large part of the platform has already been moved to the cloud, with AWS services such as DynamoDB, EC2 instances and S3 providing instant scalability to optimize costs and performance for the varying usage patterns of platform.

Results

The platform got its first real test while serving the Finnish National Hockey League live streams as the sole online distributor. The service performed well under the extreme circumstances with no service disruptions.

Exove implemented the system with a Scrum process that heavily involved the customer and partners. Part of the work was done in customer premises as a mixed team. Exove continues to develop the system further with the same team.