Minerva Networks has announced the integration of the Minerva VNP-40 with both Apple's QuickTime file-format and Kasenna's MediaBase video server. The move means the company can offer an on-demand solution for live video.

Minerva VNP-40 is a real-time network encoder, and can stream video to any desktop computer running a QuickTime or MPEG-4-compliant player. It's a heavyweight video encoder that supports a number of video formats, including QuickTime and H.263 – part of the MPEG-4 specification.

It is a server-side appliance that connects to existing Internet Protocol (IP) networks using ethernet. Once operational, it automatically transmits audio and video data to a selected IP addresses. The compressed-video streams can be received by desktop computers and IP set-top boxes, or stored on video servers for later viewing.

The Minerva VNP-40 is operated and maintained by a built-in HTTP server, allowing complete access and control of configuration parameters through a Web browser from anywhere on the network.
VNP-40 supports variable frame-rates and bit-rates ranging from 50Kbps to 1Mbps, at resolutions ranging from QSIF (176-x-144 pixels) to CIF (352-x-288 pixels).

Patrick Sweeney, Minerva's vice president of marketing said: "By integrating the real-time encoding capabilities of the Minerva VNP-40 with the Kasenna MediaBase video server and QuickTime, customers can enjoy a cost-effective and reliable video-networking solution.

"Implementing near-VHS-quality video delivery over a broadband connection or a corporate intranet provides organizations with significant increases in productivity and revenue," Sweeny said. "The Minerva VNP-40 enables the deployment of robust, standards-based video networking applications."

QuickTime a key factor Integrating these technologies means that QuickTime becomes an essential element of a system geared-up to provide video on-demand services over broadband networks. This means that broadband-ready Internet users and hi-tech entertainment companies can plan for a future that will include online movies on-demand, as well as high-resolution video conferencing.

Apple's director of QuickTime product marketing, Frank Casanova, said: "Apple's QuickTime provides the highest quality cross-platform delivery of streaming-media content on the Internet."

The system is now available. Prospective customers should contact Minerva Networks for details.