The room was packed as we kicked off the annual Production Technology Seminar (PTS) 2016. With more than 130 delegates and 16 technology demonstrations from EBU Members and industry, it was hard to take in all the buzz and new projects at the same time. But we managed and we learned a lot along the way.
How will the production studio look in the future and how will we integrate our work? It’s clear that newsrooms already rely more on multi-skilling journalists than ever before. But how far does integration and multi-skilling go? Charles Bebert (Kane) and Karl Petermichl (ORF) set the scene for this year’s event in their keynote speeches looking at the topics of cross-media production and how broadcasters must continue to become smart and lean in the future.
Until recently, there was a clear recipe for success in media and entertainment. However, as media technology continues to evolve and new developments take place, broadcasters must look for innovative ways to share content across a multitude of different platforms. This year’s theme for PTS is: “Getting ready for the future.” So what are the latest trends in media technology? What should we as public service media take on board to stay competitive in the future?
One thing is for sure: all new trends will require new enabling infrastructures based on IP and the Conference revealed that: “The move to IP-based production is now a reality”. Felix Poulin (EBU) outlined the latest roadmap of developments for the future IP Studio. It is also important to note that the Belgium public broadcaster, VRT, successfully accomplished the trial remote production of a live musical concert using IP and open standards across the whole production chain, thereby demonstrating the capabilities and benefits of IP in live broadcast production.
The use of objects to provide curated experiences for audiences is also gaining ground – fast! A number of broadcasters, including the BBC, highlighted their use of objects to produce different possibilities for producing content for the viewer in the future, such as enhanced content for sports, drama, and weather forecasting.
In a session dedicated to virtual reality, Simon Gauntlett (DTG) asked the audience if they thought it was an opportunity, a threat or a gimmick? Hardly anyone thought it was a gimmick and if fact, most were waving their hands to show their enthusiasm for the many doors this new content will open in the future. Several broadcasters and technology companies – ZDF, ARTE, Fraunhofer, Sky, WeMakeVR and Avrotros – showcased their latest virtual reality productions and camera technologies during the event.