Hardware Infrastructure Global Viewpoint – January 2021

Being Resilient For 2021

It’s fair to say that the last year has given the broadcast technology and engineering community some fascinating challenges. Over the past few weeks our editors have reviewed how broadcasters dealt with last year and how these decisions will influence this coming year.

With live production hit the hardest, Michael Grotticelli in his article Industry Bruised But Not Beaten, discusses how broadcasters have adapted to providing live television with ground breaking and innovative solutions to deliver real-time remote productions. Although we have known for some time that this is possible, it’s only since lockdown that we’ve been able to stress test our ideas and prove their operational worth.

As Mike reminds us “distribution flourishes in a time of need”, and with three new video codecs having recently become available, even new 4K channels are being deployed.

Hybrid is key for Adrian Pennington in Tech + Media Predictions Part 1. Having the flexibility to edit locally or remotely allows production teams to achieve a high-quality work/life balance to both improve creativity and efficiency. The heightened focus on sharing resource de-emphasizes the need for ownership and will provide more opportunities for rental, especially for those providing cloud and software as a service.

Supercharged growth is highlighted by Adrian with his discussions on the expansion of LED stage installations for virtual production. Indies look favorite to benefit from the cost-effective alternatives to green screen to deliver significantly greater creativity.

Championing the developments in ATSC3.0 Ned Soseman shares with us his views on the potential growth broadcasters now have when embracing this new technology. Recently released by the FCC, the report “Promoting Broadcast Internet Innovation Through ATSC3.0” is summed up beautifully in Ned’s Flying On Instruments in 2021 with his commentary: It’s all good for all commercial, non-commercial, full-power and LPTV broadcasters.

In NextGen TV Looks to 2021 Ned looks to the year ahead and provides a summary of the key technology rollouts as well as uncovering the latest consumer viewing innovation. By taking advantage of the added benefits of private data broadcasting, ATSC3.0 looks like it has the potential to provide even more profitable opportunities for broadcasters.

Privacy is predicted to be one of the key global technology trends for 2021. In Analytics, Targeting, Mobile and Privacy to Thrive, Philip Hunter discusses how the European GDPR regulations are affecting broadcasters, especially with the data harnessing opportunities they have available through internet delivery.

Philip goes on to discuss how targeting content through addressable advertising looks set to be majorly important for pay TV services. With the march now on to grab shares of Netflix’ 158 million subscribers, and the potential for 5G broadcasting, the year ahead is certainly set to be eventful.

Those working at the coal face during the last year have been fighting continuously to keep their facilities on-air, and provide national public services, and in addition there’s a whole group of innovators and designers who’ve been developing solutions and services for the coming year. I suspect few would have suspected that their spare bedroom would have become an extension of an R&D lab.

But I believe the most important aspect of broadcasting through lockdown has been the amount of knowledge we have all gained and shared as an engineering and technology community.