AI And Flexible Workflows Are Key Themes In Playout & Delivery At 2023 NAB Show

At this year’s show there will be much talk of the impact of AI on almost all aspects of delivery, with workflow flexibility, efficiency and analytics also featuring.

As the 2023 NAB Show marches closer, one of the hottest and most controversial topics in all digital electronics today is artificial intelligence (AI). Where ChatGPT leads humanity is a serious issue. In the meantime, AI and machine learning (ML) is penetrating various broadcast technologies. Some of the first live broadcast gear to use AI is closed captioning systems. Captioning AI can be trained to learn and accurately caption the exact words people speak, including those who are generally difficult for some people to understand. AI learns to translate inflections, accents and pronunciations connected to a unique voice into readable text.

In addition to captioning, emerging broadcast AI applications include media management, crew scheduling, source management such as satellite recording schedules, and many other uses in sales, traffic, news, master control, and engineering including transmitter monitoring and management.

TV broadcasting isn’t a random event. It’s not about producing the most beautiful UHD pictures. Anyone can do that with a new iPhone on YouTube.

At NAB Show 23, more exhibitors will be showing new solutions incorporating AI and ML to improve and enhance efficiency and accuracy than ever before.

As you tour the NAB exhibits in search of new solutions, ideas, and enhancements for your facility, ask the exhibitors you visit what solutions they sell that use AI and ML and what advantages it provides for users and owners. Captioning is one thing, but broadcasters can’t tolerate or afford errors in playout and delivery because the computer got confused, particularly during popular prime time or world-class sports championships. Expensive one-time spots that don’t air for technical reasons can be even more expensive or impossible to ‘make good’ for a disappointed sponsor.

Clearly, TV broadcast groups are finding ways to economize operations without cutting quality with master control hubs. One difference between group hubs is typically how and where outside content is captured and managed, such as satellite or internet, and streaming or file-based. Another difference is how hubs send content to local stations. Some use satellites, some use the internet, and many use both. Some local stations load their local servers with content from the hub 24 to 48 hours in advance.

AI Media EEG (Booth W1267). “AI is eating captioning. Rollout and acceptance of AI products in video is snowballing. This is evident in the language localization space where Ai-Media plays, but also in other areas across production and QC. The news coverage around ChatGPT has opened a lot of eyes about what kinds of things are possible now,” said Fiona Habben with EEG AI-Media.

As we’ve seen recently, the need to ensure highly secure, always-on caption delivery in today’s increasingly volatile cyber landscape has become an urgent need for broadcasters. Vendors like Ai-Media who can provide powerful security and failsafe capabilities to ensure captions are always delivered to screens are taking center stage.

The AV610 iCap Viewer for live captioning display for corporate events will be on display in the EEG exhibit.

The AV610 iCap Viewer for live captioning display for corporate events will be on display in the EEG exhibit.

Broadcasters are looking to put out ever-increasing amounts of content, and to be consumed on many different platforms and in many regions. Ai-Media makes live captioning and subtitling affordable to save space in tight budgets, and relatively straightforward in a complex technical production and distribution environment. And via our iCap Cloud Network, we provide the security and failsafe capabilities broadcasters need to ensure their captions are always delivered to screens, even in the face of technical difficulties or cyberattack.

Keeping pace with the rate of development in AI technologies. The leading technologies of 2 years ago don't look good anymore by comparison today, and the same will likely be true a few years from now. Customers depend on a vendor like Ai-Media to keep the solution fresh and always looking good against a rapidly raising bar of standards.

“Anyone integrating AI into language recognition today is standing on the shoulders of giants, but the key differentiator is the ability to integrate the latest technology into familiar production patterns with mature surrounding technologies – scalability, security, monitoring, APIs and ease of use,” Habben said.

She continued, “Ai-Media has begun rolling out LEXI 3.0, the new and improved version of our flagship automatic captioning solution that delivers even greater accuracy, rivalling that of human captions. Independent audits have proven that LEXI 3.0 consistently achieves over 98% accuracy, and it delivers brand new features like automated speaker identification and AI-powered caption placement to avoid interference with on-screen visuals.”

Florical Systems (Booth N2938). For more than 35 years, Florical has been a TV automation leader, primarily focused on Master Control automation solutions for centralization, cloud-based master control, end-to-end master control solutions, and media asset management. At NAB Show 23, Florical will be showing its Acuitas integrated playout, AirBossX master control automation, AirBossX Editor traffic interface and its Femix advanced media server. Florical will also show and demonstrate numerous acquisition and distribution solutions and business intelligence & content management solutions such as BXF Traffic Interface, Supervisory Monitor, Media Master storage management, and SMART Central for cloud applications.

The Acuitas integrated playout solution features built-in automation, graphics, effects, conversion and switching.

The Acuitas integrated playout solution features built-in automation, graphics, effects, conversion and switching.

SMART Central is a powerful web-based Business Process Management (BPM) solution for broadcast facilities. At its core, SMART Central offers an array of automated management and reporting tools to give operators and decision-makers immediate access to critical information. The building block solution can be scaled, and apps can be added to help facilities optimize operations and reduce costs. SMART Central is designed for multi-departmental use including Sales, Traffic, and Master Control to help create efficiency.

LTN Global (Booth W2621).  Rick Young, SVP, Head of Global Products at LTN; “Live production and linear channel play out is moving rapidly to cloud or hosted environments. As a result of these location agnostic workflows, video networks continue the trend of moving away from fixed facilities and local networks to cloud and wide area networks.” He continued “One of the biggest challenges facing broadcasters today is the need to bring highly reliable, real-time video feeds into cloud production and playout environments. Further, and perhaps more importantly, the need to move produced events or integrated full time channels out of cloud environments reliably and affordably without being hit by margin slimming egress charges.”

At the NAB Show 23, LTN will showcase the latest enhancements to our intelligent IP-based transmission solution, LTN Wave, which grants content providers a flexible, reliable, and cost-efficient alternative to satellite distribution. LTN’s proprietary IP multicast network with built-in packet recovery and routing protocols provides industry-leading reliability and high SLAs, and enables customers to easily and affordably regionalize, customize, and direct multiple channel versions across any platform or geography, managing all first- and last-mile protocols and enabling complex business and licensing rules.

LTN Wave grants content providers a flexible, reliable, and cost-efficient alternative to satellite distribution.

LTN Wave grants content providers a flexible, reliable, and cost-efficient alternative to satellite distribution.

LTN will also showcase LTN Arc, the fully managed, cloud-enabled production solution that handles every aspect of live event versioning for rights holders and sports broadcasters to customize, regionalize, and distribute high value live content at scale, across multiple digital platforms.

LTN will also spotlight LTN Lift, the cloud-based playout solution with automated versioning capabilities to easily spin up multiple versions from a core linear channel, with regionalized, tailored and platform-specific programming for digital/OTT/FAST distribution.

Our theme is centered around helping media companies do more with less — harnessing an IP-based approach to creating, distributing and monetizing high value content to reach more viewers, across more platforms, more efficiently and more reliably,” Young said.

Jessica Bedford with Telstra Broadcast Services (Booth W3609); “Our customers are looking for the best tool for their media delivery and being very selective. That might mean selecting satellite for traditional broad regional delivery, a fiber network for big bandwidth remote production, or internet delivery for extended reach. From a Telstra Broadcast Services perspective, that describes our portfolio of hybrid media networks.”

She continued, “One of the biggest issues facing broadcasters today is the transition to IP-based broadcasting. Telstra Broadcast Services brings together a dedicated team of media industry professionals, high-performance media networks, online and video cloud platforms, and a sophisticated managed services portfolio to help broadcasters determine how and when to use internet delivery tools for media delivery. “

Telstra International Remote Production is a managed service that delivers camera, audio and data from a venue via Telstra’s Optical Transmission Network to centralized production hubs for REMI live switching and post-production.

Telstra International Remote Production is a managed service that delivers camera, audio and data from a venue via Telstra’s Optical Transmission Network to centralized production hubs for REMI live switching and post-production.

“During the quiet COVID years, many customers and projects were placed on hold. Now that we’re on the other side of that time period, the number of projects is exploding and the number of media delivery solutions is expanding,” she said.

At NAB, Telstra Broadcast Services will be demonstrating how our trusted media networks and comprehensive managed services can be tailored to our customers’ specific needs. We’ll be showcasing our hybrid media networks (Internet Delivery Network, Dedicated Media Network, etc); our Media Production Platform, which provides cloud-based solutions for Remote Production, Playout, MAM and Media Conversion; our Virtual Advertising solution; and our latest innovations in 5G and Digital Cinema.

“Our exhibit theme Bedford said, is “Global Connections. Infinite Possibilities.”

Qligent (Booth N3304).  The company will show its Vision 3 and Vision 5 solutions at NAB 23. According to Qligent CEO Brick Eksten, “That includes support for ATSC 3.0 in both platforms. We will emphasize overall improvements in Vision 5, highlighting its ability to scale as a cloud-native microservices solution. There will be a strong focus on QoS for high-scale networks and end-to-end monitoring of the media supply chain. We will also communicate its inclusive support for both SDI and SMPTE ST 2110 media workflows in its new Vision 5 platform later this year. It is an all-new platform designed using cloud-native technology but deployable anywhere. By combining traditional record/compliance functionality with the ability to deploy at scale and across hybrid networks Vision 5 allows for a high level of flexibility in functionality. In addition to the new deployment and scaling capabilities, Vision 5 will combine the QoS, QoE and compliance monitoring strengths that Qligent is known for together with the ability to drill deeper into their media supply chain through enhanced capabilities which combine systems, signals, and network monitoring into one holistic and unified view.”

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