Qube Cinema has released QubeCast, a new multicast server providing efficient digital cinema package (DCP) distribution over satellite and broadband networks. QubeCast is designed primarily for wide distribution of films to theaters, including exhibitors in remote locations or without reliable high-speed data connections.
QubeCast relies on the innovative Qualcomm® RaptorQ™ Forward Error Correction (FEC) technology from Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, to rapidly distribute films via satellite, even when there is no return data channel. The technology gives cinema networks an efficient and reliable alternative for DCP distribution and status monitoring.
With QubeCast, exhibitors worldwide can receive DCPs from studios via satellite upload. Its web-based user interface (UI) allows secure transmissions to be initiated remotely and provides theater managers with the overall status as well as a per-client status for each transmission. Qualcomm RaptorQ FEC technology ensures accurate delivery to multiple screens simultaneously with either one-way or two-way return channels. Use of the return path allows client servers to report on the status of a transmission, but because FEC is applied to the signal prior to transmission, QubeCast can correct data loss even on one-way multicast links.
“With Qualcomm RaptorQ technology, QubeCast can scale DCP delivery to hundreds or thousands of screens by overcoming the problems of data loss and latency,” said Michael Luby, VP of Technology at Qualcomm Technologies, Inc. “The Qualcomm RaptorQ technology is a great example of the compelling technologies Qualcomm is driving to help address network bandwidth and meet the 1000x data challenge, and we look forward to continuing to collaborate with Qube Cinema to enable their multicasting server to be used by more segments.”
On a large scale, sending DCPs via satellite or broadband networks is more efficient than using conventional IP-based tech like file transfer protocol. QubeCast tracks every file going to every screen at every site and displays this in its status UI. It also tracks when the file has been ingested into the server. Each of these stages can be monitored from a central web-based control panel. Qualcomm RaptorQ protects against the loss of data, while minimizing the amount of additional data that needs to be sent.
“Multicasting through one-way channels eliminates the need for a lot of feedback from client servers about the data they receive,” said Senthil Kumar, co-founder of Qube Cinema. “This reduces costs and allows transmission to a large number of theatres simultaneously. In fact, QubeCast is already deployed on Qube Cinema’s network of over 1,600 cinemas throughout India, many in remote locations with no Internet connection.”
QubeCast is available now in two options. The 1RU mounted device functions with all theatre management systems to serve any number of screens at a site. Alternatively, QubeCast software can reside directly on the group server at a theatre chain, reducing hardware requirements. Either way, QubeCast uses very little computer resources and runs in the background, even while a D-Cinema server is performing its primary function: playing the DCP.
About Qube Cinema, Inc.
Qube Cinema is an international manufacturer of Digital Cinema technology and mastering solutions. A subsidiary of India-based Real Image Media Technologies, Qube Cinema draws on decades of experience in media, cinema and entertainment. The company is committed to creating a seamless Digital Cinema environment for exhibitors, filmmakers and postproduction companies with technologies that are innovative, flexible and cost-effective. Qube Cinema’s product lines include the Qube XP series of digital cinema servers, Qube Xi 4K Integrated Media Block, QubeMaster software solutions, and Qube Keysmith KDM generation system. Qube Cinema, Inc. is based in Burbank, California. For more information, visit www.qubecinema.com