1.0: An Introduction to the Radio Television Brunei Online Streaming Platform
Radio television Brunei (RTB) has been in operation since March 1, 1957 with its first ever radio programme broadcasted in May of that year. With its objective to become the country’s main platform in national development, the broadcasting organisation offers various programmes dedicated to a myriad of fields that attracts the viewing of a majority of its population. In line with its public agenda in national development, RTB continues to evolve with the technological developments and current trends and demands of the general public and consumers (Prime Minister’s Office, Brunei Darussalam & IT and E Government, n.d.). As part of its efforts in keeping up with the ever evolving technological landscape, RTB first launched its RTBGo Over the Top (OTT) platform on the 1st of September 2019.
2.0 : IPSB Technology Assists in the Delivery and Development of RTBGo
In an original case study conducted by the Amazon Web Services (AWS) team, IPSB Technology was tasked at helping the nation’s premier channel in answering the needs and demands of the average consumers. The main objectives were:
- Creating a ready to go cloud environment while eliminating trial and error deployments
- Speeding up time to market required for RTB customers
- Assist in the growth and expansion of RTB as a business entity
(Amazon Web Services (AWS), 2021)
Offering managed services that drive digital transformation, IPSB Technology enlisted the AWS team in its efforts of achieving the three main objectives assigned to them by the media and entertainment broadcasting agency. The partnership between IPSB Technology and AWS played a pivotal role in the success in deploying the RTBGo streaming service.
The choice was easy for the IPSB Technology team. AWS has had several successes in maintaining other OTT platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime. The cloud provider offers a mature cloud platform for the media and entertainment industry with a well developed content delivery network and multi screen video technology. This, in turn, allows for less to no trial to error processes when setting up the solution for RTBGo. AWS goes above and beyond only accommodating server and storage needs to deliver technologies that streamline industry specific workflows. The AWS environment comes ready to use as opposed to other cloud providers in the market.
Furthermore, the AWS ecosystem and services shortened the time needed to deploy the solution which allows for RTB to reach the market sooner. RTB was deployed within two months which accelerated consumers’ access to the content. As one of the primary tools of national development, Bruneians leveraged on the information disseminated through the programmes on the RTB channels.
Img 1: RTBGo Landing Page Offers an Overview of the Available Programmes Available (Radio Television Brunei, n.d.)
Within the year that it was launched, RTB saw a steady increase in viewership and traffic by 20 percent on a monthly basis. The launching of the RTBGo platform came just in time during the wave of COVID-19 that was spreading at an alarming rate worldwide. According to Ruzanna Salleh, IT Supervisory Engineer at RTB, March 2020 saw one of the highest demands on the agency’s content delivery network – 60 terabyte by more than 140,000 users – mainly due to the pandemic announcements on RTB’s GoLive channel during the first and second wave of COVID-19. The situation propelled site activity to almost 600 percent. The scaling capabilities offered by AWS and changes applied by AWS allowed the site to maintain and handle its sudden increase in workload (Amazon Web Services (AWS), 2021).
3.0 Expanding the RTBGo Platform
Img 2 : RTBGo Promotional Banner – New Features, Better User Experience (Radio Television Brunei, n.d.)
Before the entrance of IPSB Technology and its partners, RTB faced its main challenge – the creation of their first digital asset platform for consumer use. This challenge posed two threats. The first was establishing their first digital asset platform. Second was making end user or consumer internet access accessible for all.
Enter IPSB Technology and its partners.
To solve RTB’s main challenge, IPSB Technology relied on AWS’s Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (Amazon EC2) server instances to ensure scalability and availability of RTB’s content. Apart from the Amazon EC2, IPSB Technology also applied the use of Amazon Simple Storage Service (Amazon S3) for storage content archiving. The Amazon S3 banked on the Amazon CloudFront content delivery network aimed at minimising latency overall. To cap the entire ecosystem off, AWS Elemental Live was used to encode content which ensured that consumers were able to access content and streaming channels anytime, anywhere (Amazon Web Services (AWS), 2021).
Apart from the AWS ecosystem, IPSB Technology additionally enrolled the functions offered by Boomlabs’ Glue Media Publishing System (Glue MPS). Glue MPS is a cloud based media publishing system that delivers live and on demand content to very high traffic applications (Boomlabs Glue MPS, n.d.). The system supports end to end workflow for broadcasting networks by scaling seamlessly content. The turnkey media publishing system includes live and on demand encoding, user management, content management, paywall, content rights management and reporting. This complemented the AWS functionality and provided RTB with an end to end service for its OTT platform.
RTBGo has shown much success since its conception in September 2019. To date, it has an average of over 50,000 users per month. Since October 2021, almost three years after its conception, the platform has expanded to offer its dedicated mobile application features that can be found on the Android Playstore (refer to img 3) and the Apple AppStore (refer to img 4).
Img 3 : RTBGo Mobile Application on Android PlayStore
Img 4 : RTBGo Mobile Application on iOS AppStore
The mobile app boasts over 3,000 programmes accessible to consumers and public anywhere and at any time, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.With the development and implementation of the mobile application for this project, Brunei-ans globally are able to use the RTBGo application with ease allowing for an even more user friendly and enjoyable experience (IPSB Technology Marketing Team, 2021)
4.0 Truly, A Hard Combination to Beat
Since its inception in 2019, and with the help of IPSB Technology managed services and partners, Glue MPS and AWS, the RTB brand has expanded from conventional linear television (prior to 2019) to web based streaming and viewing (launched 2019) to mobile apps (RTBGo app launched 2020 and RTBGo App 2.0 launched 2021). The evolution has seen a steady influx of users since the launching of RTBGo, in general. This could be attributed to the fact that the programmes are now made more accessible to its consumers.
Statistically, RTBGo has seen a steady flow of users. With an average of roughly 50,000 users and around 180,000 page views month to month for its web platform as well as an average of 61,000 users for mobile apps, the OTT platform has seen an average of almost 700,000 users cumulatively since 2019.
At its peak, RTBGo raked in more than 200,000 users in August 2021. This 80 percent spike was mainly due to the launching of its newest channel, RTB Aneka, and COVID-19 announcements that were taking place. The general population, at the time, were starving for information on the pandemic. Brunei-ans were eagerly awaiting for a press conference by the Brunei government.
With the launching of RTBGo 2.0, a few changes were made to both look and feel and the user interface. Users are now required to register to continue using the account, ensuring privacy and upon logging on either by integrating users personal information with facebook and gmail sign up details, are able pick up where they left off on episodes or content watched last.
Since 2019, both web and mobile apps for both RTBGo 1.0 and RTBGo 2.0, the platform has seen an average of almost 50 ingest hours monthly. Total asset that was used for RTBGo web (December 2019 till September 2020) was more than 18,000GB but saw a significant increase of 350percent to almost 80,000GB with the launch of RTBGo mobile app 1.0 (October 2020 – September 2021). The launching of RTBGo 2.0 mobile app on the other hand saw an almost 80 percent increase of total assets with close to 150,000GB till June 2022.
5.0: The Future is Now
At its launching ceremony for the first version of the RTBGo mobile app in October 2020 at One City, Jalan Salambigar, Brunei Darussalam, Awang Muhammad Zulkarnain bin Haji Brahim @ Ahmad, Assistant Head of TV Programme, RTB as the chairperson of the ceremony among others said “RTBGo is using the over-the-top, OTT service as one of the alternative measures for conventional broadcasting to reach a wider scope of audience. It can be accessed via the internet anywhere and everywhere.” He further added that OTT platforms will be the new norm for the broadcasting industry (IPSB Technology, 2020).
A study that was conducted during the pandemic on the broadcast industry and its trends by G. Gupta and K. Singharia, the demand of the consumers of the broadcasting industry has evolved. Since the pandemic hit, 18 percent of consumers have migrated to using streaming services for their entertainment needs This holds specifically true for teenagers (Gupta & Singharia, 2021).
By conducting a partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM) analysis to examine the impact of two key antecedents, namely, customer engagement and quality of service experience for their impact on users’ willingness to continue and subscribe streaming services in future, the research shows that providers will need to expand their offering delivery methods and platforms (Gupta & Singharia, 2021,).
According to Gupta and Singharia, “Digitalization across the globe has changed the way media is consumed. Increase in the number of internet connections, better networks, technological innovations and availability of smart devices have resulted in the rise of new OTT media that offers services to viewers directly via the internet.”
This study proves that on demand viewing and online streaming is the future and the future is now.
To read AWS’s previous case study on how IPSB Technology accelerated time-to-market for video streaming for RTBGo, click here
For more information on Glue Media Publishing System, click here.
To read more on other IPSB Technology articles on RTBGo, click here.
Amazon Web Services (AWS). (2021, February). IPSB Accelerates Time-to-Market of Streaming Video and Mobile Applications for Radio Television Brunei. AWS. Retrieved September 3, 2022, from https://aws.amazon.com/partners/success/radio-television-brunei-ipsb/
Boomlabs Glue MPS. (n.d.). Media Platform as a Service: An Introduction. Glue Media Publishing System – Live & On-demand Streaming. Retrieved September 3, 2022, from https://www.gluemps.com/
Gupta, G., & Singharia, K. (2021, March 1). Consumption of OTT Media Streaming in COVID-19 Lockdown: Insights from PLS Analysis. Vision: The Journal of Business Perspective, 25(1), 36-46. 10.1177/0972262921989118
IPSB Technology. (2020, October 11). News: RTBGo App Launching Ceremony. IPSB Technology. Retrieved September 7, 2022, from https://www.ipsb.com.my/news-rtbgo-app-launching-ceremony/
IPSB Technology Marketing Team. (2021, September 1). RTB.go 2.0 : New Features,Better Experience. IPSB Technology. Retrieved September 3, 2022, from https://www.ipsb.com.my/rtb-go-2-0-new-features-better-experience/
Prime Minister’s Office, Brunei Darussalam & IT and E Government. (n.d.). Overview. Radio Television Brunei. Retrieved September 3, 2022, from https://www.rtb.gov.bn/SitePages/Overview.aspx
Radio Television Brunei. (n.d.). RTBGo Homepage. RTBGo. Retrieved September 4, 2022, from https://www.rtbgo.bn/