Microsoft has updated its Azure platform with tools for streaming media services.
The company said that the Azure Media Services would provide developers with a set of components and API for the delivery of media files. The service will aim to provide a backend platform for broadcasts and other media services on both PCs as well as mobile devices and consoles.
Scott Guthrie, corporate vice president for Microsoft's server and tools division, said the services would not be dependent on any one client platform or service.
In addition to Microsoft's own products, Media Services will also support integration with iOS and Android devices as well as OS X and smart TV systems.
Among the platforms supported by the tools are Silverlight, Flash, and HTML5.
The company sees the platform holding a particular appeal with broadcasters and network service providers as well as large enterprises looking for a system to distribute content to employees and customers.
Additionally, Guthrie noted that the services would utilise Microsoft's REST API, a move which will simplify integration of multiple platforms and services.
"This makes it incredibly easy to automate media workflows and integrate the combined set of services within your applications and media solutions," Guthrie noted in a blog post.
"Like the rest of Windows Azure, you only pay for what you use with Windows Azure Media Services, making it a very cost effective way to deliver great solutions."
Though the Media Services are currently being offered on a limited preview basis, the company plans to put the platform to use this summer when it uses the platform to stream broadcasts from the London Olympics as part of a partnership with Akamai and Deltatre.
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