December 2, 2021
What’s in a name? The Evolution of 24i Mod Studio
In the latest of our Spotlight blogs focusing on the contributions of individuals within our 24i team, CEO Joachim Bergman talks to Product Marketing Manager Kjeld Beijer about the process of defining and naming our exciting new unified product portfolio: 24i Mod Studio.
Changing the name of a product portfolio or solution is not a decision any company takes lightly, but we’ve known for a while now that 24i needed a new identity for our video streaming platform following a period of transformation. We made our name in front-end apps, but although our app UI and UX is still second-to-none, it’s no longer the sum total of what we do.
Today, we have a complete end-to-end offering that encompases a full video streaming backend and beautiful white-label applications for all devices and for all kinds of customers - OTT, Pay TV, Broadcaster and more. Since the acquisition of Nordija earlier in 2021, we also have a complete middleware solution for Pay TV operators who have specific industry partners they wish to work with. We wanted to make all this crystal clear in the market.
Brainstorming an identity for our video streaming platform
So, earlier this year we took the decision to bring all our capabilities under a single new streaming platform with a new identity. “We were looking for a single name for our end-to-end platform that more accurately reflected its direction and the all-important flexibility and modularity,” says Product Marketing Manager Kjeld Beijer.
“We wanted to make it clear that our solutions may be off-the-shelf but that doesn’t mean they are one-size-fits-all. We prefer to think of them as ‘turnkey with a twist’. The twist is that you can have the benefits of a turnkey solution (speed to market, low capex, a roadmap of features and functionality) without compromising on style or control of your UX.
After much brainstorming, we settled on 24i Mod Studio. “The Mod part is a play on three key terms: Modern, Modular and Modifiable. They are all fundamental to our approach,” explains Kjeld. “We added Studio as a reference to the fantastic TV and Movie content that many of our customers offer to their consumers using our solutions. We also felt it was appropriate because a studio is a creative place where you go to make the most of your content - for example in a TV studio, music recording studio or an artist’s studio - and that’s what our customers do in our streaming platform, they make the most of their content online.”
More than just a name. What’s “under the hood” of 24i Mod Studio?
With such a huge range of capabilities settled under one platform, we felt it was also important to divide it up into areas of customer need. Kjeld says inspiration here came from within: “We’ve already got Backstage, our real-time content and UX management interface and integration layer which acts as the brains of Mod Studio and sits squarely between our video backend and white-label apps.
“So we went with names that would fit neatly with Backstage. Our award-winning video backend that handles ingest, transcoding, encryption, storage and content delivery becomes “Videostage” and the front-end capabilities including apps but also functionality related to search, recommendations and user management is now known as “Appstage”.
As a product company, we not only needed to reinvent the way we talk about our products, but also to more clearly define and name the pre-integrated solutions that we offer to our customers. We wanted a simple way to show the range of options for companies with different needs, budgets, and internal resources or expertise. So, Kjeld has worked with both the product and marketing teams to create the following:
Studio Solutions - these are completely off-the-shelf, pre-integrated, end-to-end offerings. They are tailored to the needs of each market and can allow customers to be live in just a few weeks while also retaining the flexibility to add new features and capabilities as their business evolves. So far we have 24i OTT Studio and 24i Pay TV Studio, with plans for Studio solutions supporting other key markets in the near future.
Studio Select Solutions - these are one step up in complexity from the Studio Solutions. They are ideal for any company that wants all the benefits of our Studio solutions but is also ready to add select extra capabilities from day one - so maybe they need the standard end-to-end solution PLUS advanced recommendations or a Roku app. So once again, we have 24i OTT Studio Select and 24i Pay TV Studio Select, and plans for further expansion.
Premiere Select - this is the option for customers who aren’t in the market for an end-to-end solution but still want access to some of our Mods. Maybe they already have a streaming backend that they want to keep using, but they want to get the benefits of Backstage and Appstage. Or maybe they just want our proven expertise in Smart TV application development. This is also the route for customers who want the Middleware developed by the team in 24i’s Copenhagen office which can be combined with a Pay TV operator’s choice of partner solutions to create fully bespoke solutions with a surprisingly short time-to-market.
Defining a new look to match the new identity
The Dutch have a long history of great art and design - from Rembrant and Van Gogh right up to a vibrant contemporary design culture. As a company headquartered in Amsterdam, Kjeld says this inspired the bold approach to building the Mod Studio brand. “At 24i we’ve always had a reputation for creativity and doing things a little differently, and we wanted to continue that in the new design concept. The internal design team took our “get creative in our Studio” slogan very seriously and put a huge amount of work into visualising the Mods as a library of abstract shapes that can be put together in many different ways to create solutions which are uniquely suited to the needs of the customer.”
Mod Studio is a real team effort
Before joining 24i, Kjeld worked for a start-up company and then spent many years for a leading telecoms provider. That combined experience was hugely relevant to the work on the Mod Studio project: “I learned long ago that a successful go-to-market strategy can’t just be about name and design,” explains Kjeld. It has to be embedded within the product and you can’t do that without having all the relevant teams deeply involved and fully on-board. So that’s what we did. Taking a fresh look at our offering has helped us to better identify where the Mods fit together and it’s already helping us to be more clear both internally and with our customers about what’s already in the solutions and what’s on the roadmap, and how they fit together. It’s all about transparency, speed and efficiency."
It’s all about transparency, speed and efficiency."
Of course, we had hoped to be launching 24i Mod Studio and our new solutions at IBC 2021 so we would have a chance to talk to our customers, partners and friends about this exciting new concept. Unfortunately, the global pandemic put an end to those hopes, but if you’d like to learn more about Mod Studio, we’d love to hear from you. Why not set up a call with Kjeld or one of our sales team today to hear all about it.