In the line-up of EBU Technology & Innovation events, BroadThinking addresses a topic of particular strategic importance for broadcasters: demand for OTT offerings is growing, and while free-to-air distribution continues to do the heavy lifting in most public service media organizations, online services have become an indispensable, but expensive, part of their distribution strategies. With strong competition from international technology giants, doing things well and efficiently is key in order to stay connected to the audience of the future.

BroadThinking 2018 (27-28 March in Geneva) is packed with relevant topics for those who build and run those online broadcast services. Changing consumption patterns, new streaming technologies, personalization workflows and higher video quality continue to be some of the pervasive themes. This year’s 2-day programme also covers useful applications for Artificial Intelligence in distribution, targeted advertising, in-stream content ingestion, multicast, user-generated UHD content, progressive web applications and practical use-cases for WebRTC. Participants also get to learn from, and network with, experts in their field and theirs peers in other organizations.

The many pieces of the OTT puzzle

The event will be kicked off by Jan Devos, streaming architect at Belgian broadcaster VRT, who will set the scene by outlining current challenges and opportunities related to the large number of technologies that need to be orchestrated for high quality online delivery. George Wright (BBC) will then illustrate how OTT may become more then just another distribution channel, with a look behind the scenes of the BBC’s interactive storytelling hit Inspector Chamber on Amazon Alexa.

The EU’s new privacy regulation GDPR will be covered from a service architecture perspective by consultant and W3C contributor Lukasz Olejnik, who will be talking about 'Privacy by Design'. The EBU’s Hemini Mehta will share insights from the EBU Flow Multi-CDN project, while Wilfried Dudink from Centurylink, formally known as Level3, will explore future roles for CDNs.

Broadthinking will also discuss the latest on codecs: The new open codec AV1 will be evaluated by Bitmovin’s Christian Feldman, and Hans Hoffmann (EBU) will compare AV1 performance to JEM and HEVC.

Nothing works without standards

Finally, the programme is rounded off with contributions from standardisation specialists such as Thomas Stockhammer (Qualcomm), who provides an in-depth overview on current interoperability efforts. Will Law (Akamai) explains what player metrics are being standardized, and Peter MacAvock (DVB) provides updates from DVB and HbbTV activities. Gilles Teniou (Orange Labs) shares his practical experience and insights on Virtual Reality standardization, while streaming professional Martin Schmalohr (IRT) dives into CMAF.

To view the programme and to register, visit the BroadThinking 2018 page.

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