The cable company calls it “Showtime Anytime”, but Video on Demand (VoD) is so much more. VoD in today’s technology allows telecommunication network providers to offer such services as home shopping, games, education, and of course movies on demand. The applications that are available with VoD are: * Movies * Interactive video games * Television programming * Catalogue Browsing * Distance Learning * Advertising * Video Conferencing The most popular use of VoD is movies. With movies/television on demand, a customer can watch television on their schedule.

In December 2007, Comcast published astounding figures about the popularity of their signature ON Demand service: * 6 billion on-demand views in less than four years * 1 billion hours of on-demand content watched this year alone * 250 million views each month * 100 views each second(COMCAST) Given the facts about the amount of usage by VoD customers, it seems only logical that businesses utilize this are a resource for business growth. The interactive capability of VoD offers a platform form many advertising opportunities.

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Advertisers can effectively target potential customers in their geographical areas. For an even wider market, businesses can program their own network and effectively target millions of digital cable viewers. (Comcast Spotlight) "The implications for education and training are immense; learning can be independent of time and place, and available at all stages of a person's life. The learning context will be technologically rich. Learners will have access not only to a wide range of media, but also to a wide range of ources of education"(Bates 1993) This prediction, made over 10 years ago, is now a reality. Multimedia education using on demand technology has changed the lives of many, myself included. These systems allow off-campus access to learning material available in video format Distance education is closer to learning than a traditional education. With online education, you have a wealth of resources available at any time. If there is something that needs more explanation, the online learner can at that moment acquire more information on the subject using a variety of web-based resources.

A Video-on-Demand system has many elements that are necessary for the use of the complete service. This includes video servers, community network, switching office, set-top unit, and backbone network At it’s inception, VoD used hardware from SunVideo, XVideo, Perspective 2000 and Software from Uniflix, Star Works, Show Me, and INTV! (Peltoniemi, 1995) Cisco Systems introduced its Content Delivery System (CDS) in 2006 as a solution that offers both cable and wireline providers the platform to delivery video-on-demand and time-shifted video services.

The Cisco CDS enables carriers to accelerate the creation and distribution of advanced entertainment, interactive media and advertising services to subscribers' televisions, PCs, mobile handsets, portable media players and other media-capable devices. At the heart of VoD is video compression. Many of the issues with earlier software have been addressed with introduction of different video compression formats Works Cited COMCAST. (n. d. ). Press Room. Retrieved September 26, 2010, from Comcast: http://www. omcast. com/About/PressRelease/PressRoom. cspx Comcast Spotlight. (n. d. ). Searchlight. Retrieved September 23, 2010, from Comcast Spotlight: http://www. comcastspotlight. com/advertising-solutions/on-demand Peltoniemi, J. (1995, January 30). Video on Demand Overview. Retrieved September 27, 2010, from http://www. cs. tut. fi/tlt/stuff/vod/VoDOverview/vod1. html Bates A. W: (1993) Educational aspects of the telecommunications revolution in Teleteaching North Holland: IFIP. Almeroth, Kevin and Ammar, Mostafa. A Scalable, Interactive Video-On-Demand Service Using Multicast Communication", In, Proceedings of International Conference on Computer Communication and Networks , San Francisco, California, September, 1994, pp292-30. Almeroth, Kevin and Ammar, Mostafa. " On the Performance of a Multicast Delivery Video-on-Demand Service with Discontinuous VCR Actions ", Georgia Tech, College of Computing, technical Report GIT-CC-94-49, October 1994. (To appear in Proceedings of ICC '95, Seattle, WA June 1995. )