Technology

New Developments, Optimism Lead to Vibrant Market

Multiplatform delivery, lower-cost solutions crowd-pleasers at show 9/10/2012 12:01:00 AM Eastern

Complete Coverage: IBC 2012

As IBC draws to a close on
Sept. 11, attendees were reporting a
relatively vibrant market, that sentiment
being bolstered by several new studies
released during the show on the state of
broadcast industry technology.

Much of the optimism was centered around
newer media, which until recently had produced
more fear than optimism among broadcasters. A
survey from Avid and Ovum, released at the
start of IBC, found that two-thirds of the 200-
plus executives surveyed from major broadcast
and other media organizations
were optimistic about their
future, with 85% feeling that
multiplatform distribution will
be critical to their growth.

Broadcasters are also moving
into 2013 in good financial
shape, said Gary Greenfield,
president/CEO of Avid.
“This is an election where
we are going to see the most
money spent in history,”
he noted. “Does that mean
[broadcasters] will be buying
a lot more product between now and the elections?
No, but it does mean we will go into
next year with healthy balance sheets, and
that’s a big difference from a few years ago.”

Those sentiments were also evident in two
separate reports released by the International
Association of Broadcasting Manufacturers and
the investment bank Silverwood Partners that
highlighted the shift to software, IT and IPbased
technologies for digital distribution.

But shifting demand is also creating “a lot of
winners and losers in the market,” as well as
some caution among broadcasters, said Jonathan
Hodson-Walker, managing partner of Silverwood
Partners. “The rate of change is so great
and there are so many different ways of distributing
video that people don’t want to invest a lot
of money in technologies they aren’t sure will
be the right technology for the future,” he said.

During the market, this shift was evident
in a plethora of new solutions to handle various
aspects of multiplatform delivery. “There
is clearly a profound transformation in the
market in how customers are spending their
money and what they care about,” said Alain
Andreoli, president and CEO of Grass Valley.
“Building this multiplatform content delivery
architecture, which includes file-based workflows
and IP-based networking and content
discovery, is on the forefront of what our customers
are doing.”

Production systems meant to streamline the
way producers and news organizations work in
multiple locations was also a hot topic. During
IBC, Avid released its Cloud-based Interplay
Sphere system, which allows journalists to create,
edit, share and publish news from the field,
while Adobe launched its Adobe Anywhere distributed
production system with the announcement
that CNN would be deploying it.

The market also saw continuing advances
in low-cost newsgathering systems. LiveU
was showing its compact, lightweight LU40-S
uplink device that bonds together 3G or 4G
cellular connections to send back video from
the field. TVU Networks introduced its TVUPack
Mini SE, an ultra-portable cellular 3G/4G
uplink solution designed for use with the Sony
XDCAM shoulder camcorders.

Meanwhile, Dejero announced that the Canadian
Broadcasting Corp. is deploying the
Dejero Live+ Mobile App to 100 of its national
and international field reporters. This app
gives reporters the ability to transmit highquality
live or recorded video from an iPhone
or iPad using cellular bonding technologies.

Advances in satellite newsgathering were also
evident. Former BBC executive Martin Turner,
who recently joined Inmarsat as director of media
business, said the company is working to
deploy systems offering customers more compact,
yet faster methods for delivering news.
These include the 2013 deployment of an improved
version of Inmarsat’s widely used Began
satellite uplink system that
doubles streaming speeds,
and the late-2013/early-2014
launch of a new Global
Xpress Ka-band service offering
even higher speeds.

As broadcasters looked for
lighter-weight, less-expensive
newsgathering solutions,
vendors were also moving to
satisfy the demand for lowercost
production equipment,
with Sony announcing a new
family of mid-range switchers.

While the new MVS-3000, MVS-6530 and
MVS-6520 switchers have many of the key
features of Sony’s higher-end MVS switcher
line, the least expensive model, the MVS-
3000, will sell for just under $40,000.

“Sony made its name in high-end broadcast
equipment, but in the last five or six years,
we’ve branched down into more affordable
equipment,” said Mark Bonifacio, director
of Sony Electronics’ live production systems
group. “We’ve done that for cameras, monitors
and decks. These are our first switchers
for under $100,000.”

E-mail comments to
gpwin@oregoncoast.com and follow him on
Twitter: @GeorgeWinslow

 

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