Cisco has announced it will acquire ExtendMedia, a content-management play that extends Cisco’s increasingly successful server-side content strategy for network operators. While operators originally saw content as being an example of a service-layer application, that view has faded in the face of a lack of vendor support for tools to actually realize that vision.
Instead, operators have been building a bottom-up content strategy based on data center tools, servers, and server-side middleware. CMS tools like those of ExtendMedia are very close to being the binding point between the service layer and the data center, and thus Cisco has little more to do before it would have a complete solution.
For example, ExtendMedia manages metadata and asset distribution to CDNs, which is a very small step from the network itself. This could be huge for Cisco, which has already been winning early deals in the content space because of its Unified Computing System (UCS) approach. This is being portrayed as an IPTV strategy, but we think ExtendMedia’s platform could also be used to manage more traditional VoD assets, TV Everywhere, and even pure-play OTT media.