Neelay Patel, Director of Digital Products & Broadcast Systems TV & Radio, will present on the BBC's strategy for online and free-to-air content distribution in his keynote to this year's FORECAST seminar, 23-34 November at EBU headquarters in Geneva. Patel takes the place of Chief Technology and Product Officer, Matthew Postgate, who is unable to attend the event. FORECAST is the essential annual gathering for public service broadcasters and the wider industry to zoom in on strategic aspects of media distribution technologies.

Patel leads the strategy, development, delivery and innovation activities for the future of BBC TV, Radio & Music. He oversees BBC iPlayer, BBC iPlayer Radio, BBC Music online, BBC Red Button, BBC Three online as well as BBC TV & Radio Broadcast Engineering and is a member of the BBC Design and Engineering Management Team.

Another highlight will be the presentation, on Day 2, of Director of the ITU Radiocommunication Bureau, François Rancy. He will provide his personal views on how the broadcasting sector needs to adapt in a technology landscape where the volume of content delivered over wireless broadband continues to grow.

Getting the distribution mix right

Now in its 20th year, the 2017 edition of FORECAST will take a comprehensive look at regulatory developments and evolving standards relating to spectrum, DTT and mobile technologies such as 4G and 5G. Many of these changes are driven by long term consumption patterns, and seizing the opportunities of OTT, while continuing to exploit the advantages of traditional broadcast channels, is key for public service media seeking to maximize public access to their services and to minimize cost.

Among many other topics, speakers at FORECAST 2017 will evaluate what role evolving technologies such as eMBMS (broadcast over mobile broadband) may play and when. They will also present business cases associated with new distribution channels and investigate the financial and regulatory implications of an increasing reliance on commercially-motivated mobile network operators in media distribution.

A session on spectrum matters will discuss how European countries are preparing their roadmaps for the release of the 700 MHz band and also take a look at emerging proposals regarding the future use of the UHF band – a topic that is set to rise to the top of the agenda again at the next World Radiocommunication Conferences in 2019 and 2023.

The event will be completed by an overview of the latest developments in OTT and the progress of the EU-funded 5G-XCAST Project.

For the full line-up of speakers and topics, and to register, visit: FORECAST 2017


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