Is Middleware Dead?

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3Q 2013 | IN-1017138


Standardization of Stacks


A number of middleware company executives have stated that middleware is dead. This statement should best be thought of in the historical sense, in which middleware has provided a common layer of functionality across different generations of devices. Within advanced architectures, especially for IPTV, it is possible to provide user interface (UI) and video services across standards, including:

  • HTML5 and Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) for menuing frameworks
  • JavaScript for interactive elements
  • Streaming protocols such as MPEG-TS, HLS, Smooth, and MPEG-DASH (possibly including adaptive bitrate)
  • Common encryption based DRM frameworks

Of course, this provisioning works only on set-top boxes and other devices with enough processing power to run WebKit, OpenGL, and other software stacks. Therefore, the argument is best made within advanced markets, and even then it is still questionable.

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