Archive for the ‘technology trends’ Category

Evolution of Opinions About Virtualization and Cloud Technology / Service in the Media and Broadcast Industry

Analysis, broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, Conference Sessions, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Nov 18 2015

This is the third in a series of articles about some of the findings from Devoncroft’s 2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2015 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry.

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The Most Interesting Take-Away From the 2015 SMPTE Conference … A Change in Sentiment Towards Cloud

On the last day of the 2015 SMPTE technical conference in Los Angeles, I was chatting to the CTO of a large media company.  I asked this person their opinion on the most interesting take-away from the 2015 SMPTE Conference.

After pause for thought the answer (I am paraphrasing here) was that three years ago when SMPTE started the cloud technology track at their annual conference, the 2013 cloud session chair Al Kovalick (who this year chaired the IP Networking track) practically had rotten tomatoes thrown at him when he told the (highly skeptical) audience that broadcasters and media company could indeed get to 5 nines” of reliability, and that it would not be long until media technology infrastructure migrated to the cloud.

Fast forward three years to the 2015 SMPTE Technical Conference, and the most interesting take-away for this media CTO was that not only were there no tomatoes thrown at speakers presenting papers about cloud and IP – it was just the opposite.  There appeared to be was broad agreement, that cloud technology is real (or at least becoming real) and that media companies are rapidly adopting it in various ways.  So minds (and therefore budgets) have changed considerably in a very short space of time.

 

Our Research Shows a Similar Change in Sentiment

What this executive expressed dovetails with the way the opinions of participants in Devoncroft’s annual Big Broadcast Survey (BBS) have changed over the past several years.

As mentioned in a previous post, one of the key outputs from the BBS is the annual BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index. This is a ranking of the broadcast industry trends that are considered by BBS respondents the most commercially important to their businesses in any given year.

The way the opinions about cloud technology and virtualization have evolved in the minds of media and technology buyers is very interesting to observe.

In the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, “Cloud computing / virtualization” ranked as the #5 trend (maintaining the same position as in 2014 and 2013).

For the past several years, it was apparent that there was not a clear understanding of how cloud technology would be deployed in the broadcast environment, and what benefits it would bring.

Today, our research shows that despite remaining skepticism about the cloud (not to mention security concerns), the acceptance of (or at least the willingness to consider) cloud technology and related services increased noticeable over the past several years.

 

 

Plans for Cloud Deployment in Media and Broadcast

But what are buyers of broadcast technology actually planning to deploy in the cloud, and do they actually trust cloud technology?

There is a substantial amount of additional data captured in the 2015 BBS on what technology segments end-users are deploying and planning to deploy cloud services, along with what efficiencies they hope to achieve by deploying cloud Services.  This data is presented in the 2015 BBS Global Market Report (available for purchase).

Over the past year, we’ve observed that cloud services / cloud technology is one of the fastest growing areas of project spending in the media and broadcast industry.

But what are buyers of broadcast technology actually planning to deploy in the cloud, and do they actually trust cloud technology?

 

Opinions and Sentiment About Cloud are Changing Rapidly

Perhaps more than any other topic, the industry’s plans for cloud have evolved considerably over the past several years.

For the past several years, we’ve been asking BBS respondents what they’ve already deployed, or plan to deploy in the cloud over the next 2-3 years.

As the chart below highlights, the answers given by BBS respondents over the past several years have changed over time, as cloud went from a non-issue, to a curiosity, to a top-5 project.

Today, we are hearing more and more from end-users about serious projects being deployed in the cloud, and many more are evaluating how to take advantage of the benefits offered by cloud technology.

 

2009-2015 Evolution of planned cloud deployments in media & broadcast

 

To further illustrate how plans for deployment of cloud technology in media and broadcast have changed over the past several years, the three “word clouds” below show the free-text responses we received from BBS participants about what they have already deployed in the cloud or are planning to deploy in the cloud over the next several years.

 In 2013, plans for cloud technology were highly fragmented, with projects ranging from email, to collaboration, to storage and archive.

 

2013 BBS - Planned Cloud Deployments

 

Many respondents to the 2013 BBS said they planned to use cloud technology to deploy things like email systems, collaboration portals and file-sharing, and straightforward applications such as off-site storage of media assets. However, very few respondents contemplated “serious” media operations in the cloud.  Perhaps that’s because they were busy throwing tomatoes at Al Kovalick…

 

One year later, respondents to the 2014 Big Broadcast Survey revealed that they had started to contemplate more seriously what could be done in the cloud for media operations.  In addition to plans for email and collaboration systems, there was a noticeable increase in the number of companies that were planning to utilize cloud applications for media processing (such as transcoding and editing) and workflow-related applications (such as VOD and archive management).

 

2014 BBS -- Planned Cloud Deployments Word Cloud

 

We also heard from many 2014 BBS respondents that they were beginning to experiment with different operational models and architectures involving virtualization and cloud technologies.  However, in 2014 the majority of responses still involved more “simplistic” cloud technologies such as collaboration, off-site storage, and subscription software services, and file sharing.

 

By 2015, both cloud infrastructure as well as end-user understanding of what can be done in the cloud had evolved.

2015 BBS - Planned Cloud Deployments.

2015 BBS respondents shared information about specific projects already underway, or that have been completed.  We’re also seeing planned cloud deployments of “serious” media operations such as playout, compute, workflow, and MAM.

Perhaps most interestingly, we saw the term “confidential” more than ever when we asked people about their plans to use for virtualization and cloud technology in broadcast and media operations.  Based on what we see and hear in the market, we’re taking this as an indication that that trials and projects are already underway.

This was reinforced throughout the 2015 SMPTE Technical Conference, where presenters from BT, Fox NE&O, Amazon AWS, Sundog, Telestream, Levels Beyond, and others all talked about the potential of virtualization and cloud, and described real-world examples of how cloud and virtualization are being used today, and how this will increase in the future.

So hearing from a media company CTO that one of the most interesting take-aways from the 2015 SMPTE conference was that there is growing acceptance of cloud is not a surprise.  Our data shows a clear progression of the importance of cloud technologies and cloud services in media and broadcast operations, and we expect this to continue into the future.

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Related Content

2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS) Reports Now Available

The 2015 Big Broadcast Survey

Ranking The Most Commercially Important Trends in Broadcast and Media Technology – 2015 Edition

Download New Devoncroft Partners Report: NAB 2015 – Observations and Analysis of the Media Technology Industry

New Devoncroft Report Available for Download: IBC 2015 – Observations & Analysis of the Media Technology Industry

2015 SMPTE Technical Conference Program

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© Devoncroft Partners 2009 – 2015. All Rights Reserved.

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Ranking The Most Commercially Important Trends in Broadcast and Media Technology – 2015 Edition

Analysis, broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, market research, OTT Video, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Nov 09 2015

This is the second in a series of articles about some of the findings from Devoncroft’s 2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2015 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry.

 

Measuring the Most Important Trends in the Broadcast and Digital Media Technology Industry

Each year, Devoncroft Partners conducts a large-scale global study of the broadcast industry called the Big Broadcast Survey (BBS).  Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries participated in the 2015 BBS, making it the most comprehensive study ever done in the broadcast industry.

Firstly, we’d like to once again thank all the people who participate in the BBS each year.  We’re thankful that you take time from your busy schedules to participate, and we love (and read all of) your feedback.

 

One of the key outputs from the BBS is the annual BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index. This is a ranking of the broadcast industry trends that are considered by BBS respondents the most commercially important to their businesses in any given year.

In order to ensure the relevance of the trends we measure each year, we spend a considerable amount of time seeking feedback about the structure of our reports from a wide variety of industry professionals.

As part of this process, the composition of the BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is reviewed each year in conjunction with Devoncroft clients, broadcast technology end-users, and a variety of domain experts.  New trends are added to the Index when BBS stakeholders believe that the value of this additional trend information outweighs the resulting distortion of the year-over-year comparisons.

Based on discussions with clients, end-users, and experts during the planning stages of the 2015 BBS project, we decided to maintain the same list of trends as contained in the 2014 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index.  The benefit of this approach is a straightforward comparison of how trends were ranked in 2015 versus 2014 across all demographics.

After this review process, the decision was taken to not change the trends measured in the 2015 BBS.  This enables a 1:1 comparison of trends on a year-over-year basis.


 

The 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

To create the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, we presented BBS respondents with a list of 18 industry trends and asked them to identify the one trend they consider to be “most important” to their business, the one trend they consider to be “second most important” to their business, and the other trends (plural) they consider to be “also very important.”

We then apply a statistical weighting to these results, based on how research participants ranked the commercial importance of each trend.
Please note that our goal from this question is to help clients gain insight into the business drivers behind the respondent’s answer.  Therefore, respondents were asked to rank these trends in the context of the commercial importance to their business, rather than “industry buzz,” or “cool technology,” or marketing hype. The 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is shown below.

 

 

2015 BBS - Devoncroft Big Broadcast Survey 2015 Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

 

When reviewing the data presented above, readers should note the following about the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index:

  • It is a measure of what research participants say is commercially important to their businesses in the future, not what they are doing now, or where they are spending money today (these topics will be addressed in future posts)

 

  • The chart above is visualized as a weighted index, not as a measure of the number of people that said which trend was most important to them

 

  • It measures the responses of all technology purchasers (i.e. non-vendors) who participated in the 2015 BBS, regardless of company type, company size, geographic location, job title, etc. Thus the responses of any demographic group such as a particular company type or geographic location may vary widely from the results presented in this article.

 

Analyzing the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Multi-platform content delivery (MPCD) is cited by a wide margin as the most important trend commercially to respondent businesses.  This is not surprising given the rise of new distribution mediums and devices.  Indeed, across multiple studies, research participants have repeatedly stated multi-platform content delivery is the most commercially important trend to their business over the next several years.

However, our discussions with broadcasters, content owners, and technology vendors indicate that despite the obvious fact that the way content is delivered and consumed has changed forever, this has not yet (with few exceptions) translated into profitable revenue streams for end-users.  There are a number of reasons why this is the case, and these have significant implications for content owners, broadcasters, and technology vendors.

These implications are addressed later in this report, as well as on the Devoncroft website.

Although multi-platform content delivery is by far seen as the most important trend in 2015, there are quite a few other interesting things to consider in the BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index.

For over the past decade the transition to HDTV operations has been a major driver of end-user technology budgets, and therefore technology product sales.  The first BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, published in 2009, ranked the transition to HD as the #1 trend globally.  In the seven years since, the transition to HD operations has drifted lower in the rankings based on the continued adoption of HD technology infrastructure globally.  For the first time in 2014, the transition to HD operations was not ranked among the top five trends by respondents, instead ranking #6.  In 2015, the transition to HD operations declined further, now ranking #8.  However, within developing markets or smaller media markets within developed regions, the HD transition remains one of the strongest drivers of broadcast industry revenue.

We provide significant coverage of the ongoing global transition to HDTV operations in the 2015 BBS Global Market Report (available for purchase). This includes a granular breakdown of the current and projected future progress that end-users have made in their transition to HD, as well as the upgrade plans for fifteen product categories including cameras, switchers, routers, servers, graphics, encoders, and video transport. We’ll also be publishing more information about project-based spending and the HD transition later in this report, as well as on the Devoncroft website.

A trend that has increased in importance over the past several years is “IP networking & content delivery,” which is ranked as the #2 most important trend in the BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index.

The move to IP-based infrastructure has increased in importance in response to several market developments.  Based on our research, end-user motivations for moving to IP-based infrastructure are more nuanced than simply generating operational efficiencies, though this goal is an important component.  Rather, end-user responses to the Big Broadcast Survey are consistent with a more encompassing goal of moving to fundamentally different technology infrastructures to better support evolving media business models.

While the move to IP-based infrastructure is still at the stage of early adopters in broadcast operational environments, there were several notable developments during 2015.  These included the progression of interoperability standards (e.g. SMPTE 2022-6), the advancement of work from the joint task force on networked media (JT-NM) [sponsored by SMPTE, EBU, and the VSF], the creation of several individual vendor ecosystems (e.g. Evertz ASPEN), and the elevated activities by large IT providers (e.g. Cisco).

A transition to IP-based infrastructures is likely inevitable given the comparative size of the broadcast technology sector versus the broader IT industry.  This greater size equates to far greater research and development resources.  There remains, however, several obstacles preventing widespread adoption of IP-based infrastructure in the immediate term.  For this reason we are expecting the move to IP to represent a major industry driver over the mid-to-long term.

Regardless of timing, the transition to IP-based infrastructure will have profound implications for both technology buyers and suppliers.

The #3 ranked trend in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is “4K / UHD.”  2015 is the second year the BBS has included 4K / UHD as a trend within the BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index. It was added based on feedback from Devoncroft’s clients.  The high ranking of 4K / UHD in both 2014 (ranked #4) and 2015 demonstrates these requests were well-founded.

Many in the industry believe 4K / UHD is the next major driver of infrastructure upgrades – similar to the transition to HD over a decade ago.

While there is no doubt that 4K / UHD is a very important development, the data collected in the 2015 BBS lends skepticism to the proposition 4K / UHD will have a similar impact on the industry as the transition to HDTV operations, which drove a massive wave of technology spending that lasted more than a decade.

Although episodic and documentary content has, or will soon, move to 4K/UHD acquisition along with archive activities (because it extends the useful life of content assets), it will take time for 4K/UHD to move into mainstream live production environments such as news and sports.  One reason is creating a live event in 4K / UHD is complex and expensive to create versus an HD broadcast.  Uncompressed 4K / UHD requires real-time processing at 12Gbps, and the full production chain is not yet widely available.  Another critical issue is that (until mid-2015) most 4K / UHD capable cameras utilize large format single sensors and cine-style PL-mount lenses. While the shallow depth-of-field produced by these acquisition systems is a perfect match for theatrical or drama production, it causes problems in live sports production, where depth-of-field is important to keep critical action sequences in constant focus.  There were several announcements by camera manufacturers during 2015 to address this issue with depth-of-field.

Nevertheless, there’s no doubt that 4K / UHD is driving strong interest and excitement in the industry.  The question remains whether it will become a mainstream technology driver as HD has been, or whether it will only achieve penetration into technology infrastructure through the normal product upgrade cycle.

The trend ranked #4 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, “file-based / tapeless workflows,” is a clear indication of the importance of increased efficiency for broadcast technology end-users.  This trend has accelerated as the transition to HDTV (ranked #8 this year) begins to decline in developed markets around the world.

Over the past several years, we’ve observed a pattern whereby broadcasters, who have invested considerable time, effort, and money into transitioning their operations to HD, begin to shift their focus towards increasing the efficiency of their operations. Over time, efficiency has become a key driver of broadcast technology purchasing.  In fact, our research shows that in many cases, increased operational efficiency and cost savings are more important than cutting-edge technology.

This is because the economics of the entire industry have changed – because of MPCD and other factors – and as a result, end-users must change their cost structure (radically in some cases) in order to generate sustained profitability into the future.

This has implications for the broadcast industry in terms of both workflows and product procurement, and as a result, the importance of both “file-based workflows” and “IP networking & content delivery” has increased as broadcast technology buyers continue to look for efficiencies as they transition to new technical platforms and business models.  The desire for broadcast technology buyers to gain operational efficiencies will likely continue to be a strong macro driver in 2015, as broadcasters continue to deploy new workflows.

Cloud computing / virtualization,” is the #5 ranked trend (maintaining the same position as in 2014 and 2013).

For the past several years, it was apparent that there was not a clear understanding of how cloud technology would be deployed in the broadcast environment, and what benefits it would bring.  This is still the case in many respects in 2015.  However, similar to observations in 2014, our research shows that despite remaining skepticism about the cloud (not to mention security concerns), the acceptance of (or at least the willingness to consider) cloud technology and related services increased noticeable during the year.

But what are buyers of broadcast technology actually planning to deploy in the cloud, and do they actually trust cloud technology?

There is a substantial amount of additional data captured in the 2015 BBS on what technology segments end-users are deploying and planning to deploy cloud services, along with what efficiencies they hope to achieve by deploying cloud Services.  This data is presented in the 2015 BBS Global Market Report (available for purchase).

Selected example data is provided in this free report from the Devoncroft 2015 BBS Global Project Index (see Part 2 of this report, starting on page 29).  It highlights how cloud services / cloud technology is one of the fastest growing areas of project spending in the broadcast industry.

But what are buyers of broadcast technology actually planning to deploy in the cloud, and do they actually trust cloud technology?   Perhaps more than any other topic, the industry’s plans for cloud have evolved considerably over the past several years.

For the past several years, we’ve been asking BBS respondents what they’ve already deployed, or plan to deploy in the cloud over the next 2-3 years.

As the chart below highlights, the answers given by BBS respondents over the past several years have changed over time, as cloud went from a non-issue, to a curiosity, to a top-5 project.

 

2009-2015 Evolution of planned cloud deployments in media & broadcast

 

Today, we are hearing more and more from end-users about serious projects being deployed in the cloud, and many more are evaluating how to take advantage of the benefits offered by cloud technology.

But what are media technology end-users actually deploying in the cloud?  This will be discussed in a future post.

“Improvements in compression efficiency,” which is ranked #6 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is consistent with the desire for increased efficiency. With content distribution models having migrated from single linear broadcast channels, to multi-channel Pay TV playout, to a totally on-demand environment, high quality compression is a critical success factor for broadcasters and content playout platforms.

A plethora of new channels, and the desire for simultaneous bandwidth saving and increased image quality for MPCD services have driven an increasing focus on high quality compression systems. For the past several years this has resulted in better MPEG-2 and H.264 compression products for primary distribution, contribution, and redistribution to consumers. H.265 (HEVC) compression technology holds the promise of further reducing the bandwidth required to deliver high quality images, particularly for 4K / UHD channels.  Despite continued momentum in 2015, HEVC is still in early stages of adoption, though wider deployments are expected over the next 12 to 18 months.

In addition to creating greater efficiencies, end-users are also looking for ways to generate incremental revenue in an environment where the economic model of the industry is changing dramatically.  Thus “video-on-demand,” which is ranked #7 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, will remain a strong driver for content owners, media companies and broadcasters.  The combination of MPCD, better compression technology, and an ever-increasing channel count, will drive video on demand deployments, whether via traditional broadcast and pay TV platforms, or over the internet or mobile networks.

The #8 ranked trend in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is the “transition to HDTV operations.

The transition to HDTV has been a huge driver of broadcast technology spending for more than a decade, but 2015 BBS respondents report that it continues to decline in terms of future commercial importance to their organizations.  In 2015, the technology required for the transition to HDTV is well understood by the majority of the market, even those who have not yet made the transition.

Despite its gradual decline in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index rankings, we believe that the HD transition will continue to be one of the most important industry drivers over the coming years. There are a number of reasons for this, but the most important is that there is still a long way to go in the HD transition on a global basis. Indeed, our research shows that 2014 was the first year the total penetration of HDTV infrastructure surpassed the 50% mark for the global market.

Nevertheless, with the transition to HD having been a critically important driver for so many years, it begs the question of what’s next — as broadcast technology end-users in developed markets approach the completion of their HD transition, where does their focus (and spending) shift?

The “move to automated workflows” is ranked #9 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Better compression technology and lower cost integrated playout platforms (such as “channel-in-a-box”), will facilitate an ongoing proliferation of new TV channels.  This will in turn drive a focus on bringing highly automated operations to channel playout and master control environments. Thus we expect to continue to see a strong interest in the “move to automated workflows” over the next several years.  Automated workflows are also seen as drivers of efficiency.

While efficiency is undoubtedly very important to end-users, actually making money from new on-line channels has driven a significant increase in focus on content monetization via “targeted advertising,” which is ranked #10 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index.

“Remote production,” which is ranked #11 in 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index is another trend that is focused on efficiency.  Through the use of remote production, broadcasters can lower their costs of producing live events, whether a small local soccer match or the World Cup.  Our research suggests that despite the potential for savings using “remote production” approaches for high-profile events, end-users are not yet comfortable adopting these approaches given the mission critical nature of the associated productions.  Therefore, the greater adoption for remote production is lower-tier events with inherently constrained revenue opportunities.

Similarly, broadcasters and media companies can achieve enormous cost-savings through the trend ranked #12 in the 2015 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, “centralizing operations,” including playout and transmission.  A relevant example of centralized operations is the North American sporting leagues (including MLB, NFL, and the NBA) creating central facilities to handle the responsibility of in-game replays.

Although it’s towards the bottom of the rankings at #13, “analog switch-off” is very important for those regions where it’s happening today – primarily as mandated by local governments.  Our research shows that analog switch-off (also called “digital switch-over” in some territories) has driven huge waves of CapEx in those markets where it has already occurred.

As with previous years, the following trends were ranked towards the low-end of the Index: “transition to 3Gbps operations”, “transition to 5.1 channel audio”, “outsourced operations”, “3D TV” and “green initiatives.

 

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The information in this article is based on select findings from the 2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2015 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry. The BBS is published annually by Devoncroft Partners.

Granular analysis of these results is available as part of various paid-for reports based on the 2015 BBS data set. For more information about this report, please contact Devoncroft Partners

 

© Devoncroft Partners 2009 – 2015. All Rights Reserved.

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Related Content

2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS) Reports Now Available

The 2015 Big Broadcast Survey

Download New Devoncroft Partners Report: NAB 2015 – Observations and Analysis of the Media Technology Industry

New Devoncroft Report Available for Download: IBC 2015 – Observations & Analysis of the Media Technology Industry

The 2014 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Devoncroft Research: IBC 2014: Observations and Analysis of Broadcast and Media Technology Industry (free 52 page report, registration required)

The 2013 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

The 2011 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

The 2010 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

The 2009 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

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Leading Media Companies to Debate Key Trends Driving Future Technology Strategy at CCW Conference

Analysis, Conference Sessions, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Oct 22 2015

As with last year’s CCW show, Devoncroft will again co-produce a conference session at the 2015 CCW show in New York on November 11 – 12.

The session is titled, ‘Key Trends Driving Media Technology Investments.’  It is scheduled for Wednesday, November 11th from 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. and is located at room 1A06 in the Javits Convention Center.

Here is a link to the session listing on the CCW website.

The agenda will begin with a short presentation from Joe Zaller of Devoncroft covering summary data from the recent Big Broadcast Survey 2015.  Joe will then moderate a panel of four technology decision makers at leading media companies.  We are in the process of confirming this year’s panelists and will update this post once confirmed.

The focus of the entire session is on the business of the media business and exploring how recent market developments have affected the business models of media companies, and by extension what are the implications to the technology purchase decision.  Specific topics will include considerations for next-generation technologies such as 4K / UHD, IP / IT, and virtualized technology deployments.

If you haven’t already signed up, you may attend the session by registering for the FREE All-Industry Core Package here.  This will also include access to the Exhibition, 30+ CCW and SATCON Core Sessions, Post|Production Campus, and the InfoSession Theater.

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Further, as part of our partnerships with the CCW, we are pleased to offer the discount code EP15 to enable a $50 savings should you upgrade to one of the below paid programs. 

 

We hope to see you in New York at the Javits.

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Related Content:

CCW Session Description — Key Trends Driving Media Technology Investments

2015 CCW Conference Registration

2015 CCW Free All-Industry Core Package Registration

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New Devoncroft Report Available for Download: IBC 2015 – Observations & Analysis of the Media Technology Industry

Analysis, broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, Broadcast technology vendor financials, Broadcast Vendor Brand Research, Broadcast Vendor M&A, Broadcaster Financial Results, market research, Quarterly Results, technology trends, Top Broadcast Vendor Brands | Posted by Joe Zaller
Sep 04 2015

In preparation for the 2015 IBC Show, Devoncroft Partners has published an analysis of the trends and strategic drivers in the broadcast and media technology sector.

This 90-page report is free. Registration is required.

A link to download this report can be found at the bottom of this page.

 

Included in the analysis are excerpts from:

 

  • The 2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), the largest and most comprehensive study of technology trends, buyer behavior, and vendor brands in the broadcast and media technology sector

 

Devoncroft IBC 2015 Media Technology Analysis

 

The report covers and provides commentary on a the following media technology trends and drivers:

 

Yes, media delivery and consumption has changed… BUT:

  • Importance of industry-specific context when reviewing data points
  • Digital delivery is a cause, not the effect
  • For media technology industry, impact extends far beyond the obvious

 

 

Media business models in transition:

  • So far, media companies have benefited from OTT
  • But if cord cutting accelerates, does OTT enhance or erode profit?
  • Investor concerns have led to value erosion at both commercial and public broadcasters

 

 

Evolution of media business models driving transition of spending priorities:

  • Value to media companies of linear versus digital consumers
    • – New technologies required to monetize digital content
  • Reflected in changing investment patterns
  • Reflected in in-house technology development at media companies
  • Reflected in M&A – Ad Tech / Software
  • Reflected in new service offerings from media companies

 

 

Structural shift in technology spend:

  • Comparison of media technology CAGR 2009-2014
  • Value shift in favor of service revenue
  • Research shows that media technology spending shifts once HD transition is complete

 

 

Impact on technology vendor performance:

  • Spending pause in studio and infrastructure
  • Has spending resumed in delivery and OTT?

 

 

Review of NAB 2015 Strategy Conference:

  • Drivers of technology strategy
  • Insights from broadcaster CTOs, vendor CEOs, service providers

 

 

Review of 2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS):

  • Ranking and review of top media technology projects
  • Ranking and review of top media technology trends
  • Review of growth expectations for product categories and geographic regions

 

 

Thoughts on future industry evolution:

  • Where do technology suppliers add value in the future?
  • Timing of next technology transition
  • Impact of Software Defined Networking (SDN)
  • The move away from specialized products and applications
  • Implications for suppliers of media technology and services
  • The next format war – where is future value, and who is battling for dominance

 

 

Research background

 

 

We welcome feedback, comments, and questions on this report.

If you would like to schedule a meeting at the IBC Show, please let us know as soon as possible.

We are in the process of our IBC Show schedule, and have very limited availability remaining.

We hope to see you in Amsterdam.

 

 

Please click here to download a PDF copy (8 MB) IBC Show 2015 – Observations and Analysis of the Media Technology Industry from Devoncroft Partners (registration required).

 

 

Related Content:

Download IBC 2015 Media Technology Industry Analysis from Devoncroft Partners (registration required)

Collaborative Market Sizing Initiative Reveals Structural Shift in Broadcast and Media Technology Industry

2015 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS) Reports Now Available

 

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© Devoncroft Partners 2009 – 2015. All Rights Reserved.

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With All the Hype About Cloud, What Are Media Organizations Actually Going to Deploy?

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, market research, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Apr 04 2013

The 2013 NAB Show starts next week, and one of the hot topics is cloud computing.

But what are end-users actually going to use the cloud for?

Here is an indication, based on preliminary data we collected this year as part of the 2013 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS).

We once again had about 10,000 people in 100+ countries participate in the BBS this year (thanks to all who participated, we really appreciate the time you spent sharing your feedback and opinions), and the “word cloud” below represents what these broadcast technology end-users say they are going to deploy in the cloud over the next couple of years.

Please note that this data is preliminary.  I say this because dealing with as many as 10,000 free text comments in 10 languages is a bit of a pain in the neck (trust me), and there is still some work to be done on the analysis of this raw data (and no time to do it before the 2013 NAB Show).  Nevertheless, some clear trends to emerge.

 

If you are really interested in examining what everyone said, just let me know and I will be happy to send you the full resolution version of this file.

I’ll post an update, as well as much  more data from the 2013 BBS after NAB 2013

 

 

2013 BBS - What is your Organization Likely to Deploy in teh Cloud Over the Next 2-3 Years

 

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© Devoncroft Partners 2009 – 2013. All Rights Reserved.

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Going to NAB? Don’t Miss 2nd Annual “Media Technology: Strategy and Valuation Conference,” A Thought Provoking Kick-Off to the 2013 NAB Show

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, Broadcast technology channel strategy, broadcast technology market research, Broadcast technology vendor financials, Broadcast Vendor Brand Research, Broadcast Vendor M&A, Broadcaster Financial Results, content delivery, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Apr 02 2013

If you are attending the 2013 NAB show, be sure not to miss the second annual “Media Technology: Strategy and Valuation,” conference which is being co-produced by Devoncroft, Silverwood Partners and the organizers of the NAB Show.

This event is being held in room N239/241 of the Las Vegas Convention Center on Sunday April 7th from 1:45 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., and it’s free for all registered attendees of the 2013 NAB show.

This year’s conference features an intensive, information-packed series of presentations and panels that discuss the strategic trends and industry-specific factors influencing the value of media technology companies.

We’ve worked hard to put together an outstanding line-up of speakers and presenters, including top technology buyers, leading technology vendor CEOs, and private equity investors who will speak to the opportunities and challenges involved with financing the next phase of technology change in the industry.

The agenda will offer attendees the informed opinions of technology purchasers, industry executives, market research organizations, and financial professionals. The event will serve as a thought-provoking kick-off to the 2013 NAB Show.

This session is intended for senior executives from technology vendors, end-users, and investment firms in the media technology sector.

 

Here’s the current lineup of presenters:

 

1:45 pm – 1:50 pm

WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION

Joe Zaller – President, Devoncroft Partners

 

 

1:50 pm – 2:20 pm

NAB SHOW SPROCKIT PRESENTATIONS

Hear from three market-ready start-ups who have been selected by the NAB’s SPROCKIT initiative.  This session will include an introduction of the SPROCKIT initiative followed by presentations from three of NAB Show’s inaugural SPROCKIT participants.

Presenter(s):

  • Hilary DeCesare, Co-Founder and CEO, Everloop
  • Heidi Messer, Co-Founder & Chairman, Collective[I]
  • John West, Founder & CEO, The Whistle

 

 

2:20 pm – 2:45 pm

THE BROADCAST & MEDIA TECHNOLOGY INDUSTRY IN 2013

Joe Zaller will present a summary of key data derived from the newly published 2013 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), the largest and most comprehensive study of the broadcast industry. Key results from the 2013 BBS will include key investments areas as well as trends of significance that are impacting these purchasing decisions.

Joe Zaller – President, Devoncroft Partners

 

 

2:45 pm – 3:10 pm

STRATEGIC INDUSTRY ANALYSIS: VALUATIONS, M&A, AND EQUITY FINANCING

Jonathan Hodson-Walker and Joshua Stinehour of Silverwood Partners will present an analysis of strategic industry trends and the specific factors that affect company valuations, including transaction activity and valuations; vendor strategic considerations; and the current M&A environment along with near-term expectations. Attendees will also learn which businesses are buyers and investors targeting and why.

Presenter(s):

  • Jonathan Hodson-Walker  – Managing Partner, Silverwood Partners
  • Joshua Stinehour – Managing Director, Silverwood Partners

 

 

3:10 pm – 3:35 pm

M&A, VALUATION PERSPECTIVES FROM INDUSTRY EXECUTIVES

Joe Zaller will moderate a panel of three recognized executives at leading vendors will offer views on the critical drivers of value (in context of M&A) in the industry, and discuss the best practices they’ve learned on how to review an acquisition opportunity and how to integrate M&A into overall growth strategies. Obstacles to further industry consolidation will also be discussed.

Moderator:

Joe Zaller – President, Devoncroft Partners

 

Panelists:

  • Dan Castle — CEO, Telestream
  • Harris Morris – CEO, Harris Broadcast
  • Denis Suggs, Executive Vice President, Belden

 

 

3:45 pm – 4:00 pm

IABM END-USER RESEARCH OVERVIEW

Peter White, Director General IABM will present an overview of the latest end-user research from the IABM, including the changing requirements of broadcast technology buyers, and what this means for the supply community.

Peter White — Director General, IABM

 

 

4:00 pm – 4:25 pm

THE BROADCAST TECHNOLOGY BUYER PERSPECTIVE

Joe Zaller will guide a discussion with broadcast executives responsible for technology budgets as they ponder the questions of most significance to decisions on technology purchasing: How are savvy broadcasters aligning known technology expenditures against uncertain multi-platform revenue opportunities in order to counteract the ‘consumer-broadcast disconnect’? How are these companies assessing the business risk of technology purchase decisions today given the uncertainty of future business models?

Moderator:

Joe Zaller – President, Devoncroft Partners

 

Panelists:

  • Fred Mattocks – General Manager Media Operations and Technology, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation
  • Steve Plunkett – Chief Technical Officer, Red Bee Media
  • Phil Braden — SVP Technology and Applications, PCCW

 

 

4:25 pm – 4:50 pm

KEYNOTE: TECHNOLOGY CHANGE, BUSINESS CHANGE

Clyde Smith, FOX Networks Engineering and Operations  will offer a broadcast executive’s perspective on the major business issues facing the industry, what major initiatives and projects have been created to solve these issues, a candid assessment of the results of these initiatives, and a discussion of what is still needed from a technology standpoint to address these issues.

Clyde Smith — SVP New Technology, FOX Networks Engineering and Operations

 

 

4:50 pm – 5:15 pm

INVESTOR PERSPECTIVES ON INDUSTRY

Joe Zaller will moderate this panel of private equity professionals who have made recent investments in the media and entertainment space will offer their unique perspectives on trends of significance for the M&E sector. They will also preview their plans for intelligence-gathering at this year’s NAB Show, the trends that are driving investment dollars in the sector, and what characteristics influence their evaluation of an investment opportunity within the M&E industry.

Moderator:

Joe Zaller – President, Devoncroft Partners

 

Panelists:

  • Dave Golob, Francisco Partners
  • Kevan Leggett, Lloyds TSB Development Capital Ltd
  • William Smales, The Carlyle Group
  • Bryce Winkle, The Gores Group

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© Devoncroft Partners. All Rights Reserved.

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Commercial Drivers and Obstacles for the Deployment of Cloud-Based Technology in the Broadcast Industry

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Sep 24 2012

This is the eighth in a series of articles about some of the findings from the 2012 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2012 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry.

 

Cloud computing is one of the hot topics in the broadcast industry in 2012, but our research shows that it’s still early days for deployments of this technology in the broadcast industry.  This article looks at the commercial drivers for implementing cloud technology, what potential buyers view as obstacles to deploying cloud technology, and to whom cloud technology is most important commercially in 2012.

 

About this time last year, we met with a large number of industry executives to discuss what broadcast industry trends to add, if any, to Devoncroft’s annual global study of the broadcast industry, the Big Broadcast Survey (BBS).

During our meetings with more than 50 industry executives, one trend was mentioned virtually every time – “cloud computing / cloud-based services.”  However, when we asked what specific information about cloud technology these people wanted to know, there was a wide divergence of opinion.  Some were interested in how broadcasters plan to use cloud technology, and what parts of the workflow broadcasters might migrate to the cloud first.  Others wanted to know if broadcasters would simply transfer existing workflows to the cloud, or whether cloud technology will enable entirely new workflows.  And finally there were some who confessed that they didn’t actually know what they wanted to know; they just wanted to understand more about cloud technology and its implications for the broadcast industry.  Ultimately, we added questions about cloud technology to the 2012 BBS in an attempt to answer some of these questions.

As seen in Figure 1 the nearly 10,000 respondents to the 2012 BBS who we asked to prioritize the commercial importance to their businesses of a variety of broadcast industry trends, ranked “cloud computing / cloud-based services” #7 out of 16 in our 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trends Index.

Although cloud technology ranks in the top half of our 2012 Trends Index, it is significantly below other topics such as multi-platform content delivery and other traditional drivers of spending such as the transition to HDTV, and the move to file-based workflows.

Figure 1: The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trends Index

 

Commercial Drivers and Obstacles for Cloud Technology in Broadcast

To better understand the commercial drivers behind the answers of these respondents, we asked, we asked those respondents who said that “cloud computing / cloud-based services” was the most important trend to their commercial success in the future why they feel this is the case.  The results are shown in the table below.

 

Figure 2: Commercial Drivers for Deployment of Cloud Technology in Broadcast Industry

 

The top commercial drivers cited by broadcast customers for deploying cloud technology in the broadcast industry highlight the fact “cloud technology / cloud services” are principally viewed today as way to enable new workflows and increase efficiencies.  While potential cost savings — achieved through increased efficiencies, shifting costs to OpEx, and SaaS services —  are arguably the most straightforward rationale for deploying cloud technology, these results imply that customers also see the cloud as a potential driver of revenue, particularly if it enables new workflows, drives collaboration, and increases the overall utilization of content.

While the benefits of deploying cloud technology are relatively clear, it is also useful to understand the obstacles that customers feel may prevent them from deploying this technology today.  These are shown below in Figure 3, which since we are discussing cloud, is displayed in the form of a word cloud. Keep in mind that the people describing these obstacles to deploying cloud technology / service, are in fact a representative sample of the biggest proponents of cloud technology in the broadcast industry.

Figure 3: Obstacles to Deploying Cloud Technology in Broadcast Industry

 

Even those who regard cloud technology as the most important commercial driver for their business over the next several years note a wide range of obstacles preventing them from deploying it today.  The most commonly cited factors are budget/cost, availability of bandwidth, content security, and the perception that cloud technology is too immature for broadcast applications.  Other factors cited as obstacles include lack of skilled personnel, rights issues, internal bureaucracy, and disruption to existing workflows.

Despite these obstacles, customers are seriously investigating this technology, and technology vendors are investing in the development of a wide variety of cloud technologies and services.

 

Relative Importance of Cloud Technology

Given the hype surrounding cloud technology, and the level of investment from vendors, it is perhaps not surprising to find that technology suppliers — represented in the chart below by systems integrators and vendors — see cloud technology as more important to their commercial success than do their customers.

 

Figure 4: Technology buyers versus sellers: Relative importance of cloud technology

 

 

Indeed, it turns out that those respondents who are most interested in, and have the most to gain commercially in 2012 from “cloud technology / cloud services” are the parties whose business is developing and selling cloud technology.

 

Figure 5: Commercial Importance of Cloud Technology by Respondent Type

 

This does not mean that the concept of cloud in broadcast is not important.  Our research confirms that there is considerable interest in deploying cloud technology and cloud services in the broadcast industry.

However, it appears that significant issues, including immature technology, cost, security, bandwidth, and viable business models, must be overcome before cloud technology can deliver commercial success that lives up to the hype it has generated over the past year.

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A previous version of this article appeared in the 2012 IBC Daily News.

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The information in this article is based on select  findings from the 2012 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2012 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry. The BBS is published annually by Devoncroft Partners.

Granular analysis of these results is available as part of various paid-for reports based on the 2012 BBS data set. For more information about this report, please contact Devoncroft Partners.

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Related Content:

The 2012 Big Broadcast Survey – Information and available reports

The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Tracking the Evolution of Broadcast Industry Trends 2009 – 2012

Analyzing Where is Money Being Spent in the Broadcast Industry – The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 1 – The 2012 BBS Overall Brand Opinion League Table

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 2 – The 2012 BBS Net Change of Overall Brand Opinion League Table

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 3 — 2012 BBS Global Brand Opinion Leaders League Table. 

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 4 — the 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table

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© Devoncroft Partners 2009 – 2012. All Rights Reserved.  No part of this article, including but not limited to charts, images, data presentation, and numerical findings may be reproduced without written permission from Devoncroft Partners.

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Impressions of IBC 2012: M&A, Cloud, Multi-Platform, 4K, Efficient Operations, CiaB, and the “Return of Grass Valley”

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, content delivery, market research, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Sep 20 2012

A previous version of this article appeared in the “Tech Thursday” Spotlight Section of TVNewsCheck

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Against the backdrop of the ongoing European debt crisis and the afterglow of the 2012 Olympics, nearly 51,000 visitors made their way to Amsterdam for the annual IBC trade show. Major themes of the five-day broadcast technology jamboree included vendor consolidation, buzz about new technologies for multi-screen content delivery and social TV, futuristic technology demonstrations, and several important new product introductions.

The broadcast vendor community got a little less fragmented on the first morning of IBC, with a merger announcement by two Norway-based video transport technology providers — Nevion and T-VIPS

Although no additional deals were unveiled at the show, vendor consolidation was one of the most discussed themes at IBC, and according to statements made by some of the leading vendors, there is potentially a lot more consolidation on the way.   

Newly acquired Miranda technologies made its debut as a “Belden brand” at IBC, and Belden EVP Denis Suggs was on hand at the show to meet customers and explain his company’s vision for the broadcast industry, and why they decided to buy Miranda in one of the largest broadcast technology M&A deals in recent years. 

In a nutshell, Belden saw the opportunity to acquire a cash-generating company with a top-class management team that’s growing faster than the overall market and jumped at it. Including Miranda, Belden now generates approximately $450 million a year in broadcast-related revenue, making it one of the industry’s largest players, and it appears they are not done doing deals in this space. 

Suggs said Belden views Miranda as a platform from which is can further expand its broadcast industry operations, and that it intends to support Miranda’s existing plan for further acquisitions.

Grass Valley CEO Alain Andreoli echoed a similar sentiment at his company’s press conference. He said that Francisco Partners, the private equity firm that owns Grass Valley, has a $3 billion fund behind it and will support Grass Valley’s efforts to become an industry consolidators.

When the dust settles, he said, Grass Valley may not be the largest player, but it will certainly be in the top three. Last year, Grass Valley bought PubliTronic, a provider of channel-in-a-box (CiaB) technology, to gain a larger foothold in the playout market. Expect to see Grass Valley and other players making additional strategic moves that help them enter attractive new market spaces.

But most IBC M&A talk centered on Harris Broadcast, which is currently being divested by its parent company. Although rumors were flying at the show about who might buy the division, its executives were tight-lipped. Harris Broadcast President Harris Morris would only say that the deal is progressing according to plan, and is on track to be completed as soon as the end of 2012.

New products and services based on cloud technology, multi-platform content delivery and social TV services dominated many demonstration and hallway conversations at IBC, particularly in the “Connected World” pavilion, where dozens of new and established firms displayed a host of products aimed at securing a place in this emerging ecosystem.

Despite the enthusiasm of vendors, many buyers publicly and privately expressed caution about the technology.

Critics of cloud technology cited immature technology, bandwidth limitations, security, and an unproven business case as barriers to its adoption. Likewise, broadcasters and content owners expressed concern over the “disconnect” between the desire of end-users to receive and consume video content on an ever-increasing number personal devices, and the ability of broadcasters to create sustainable and profitable multi-platform business models.

Cloud-based discussions at IBC ranged from real-world case studies of how EVS helped broadcasters set up private clouds to facilitate remote production of the Euro 2012 soccer championships and London Olympics, to practical solutions from Signiant and Aspera for managing the delivery of file-based content over IP-enabled and cloud-based infrastructure, to new solutions for cloud-based video production.

Cloud-based production is an emerging trend, but initiatives such as the ‘Adobe Anywhere’ initiative will prove to be a catalyst in this area. Taking cloud-based production to the “next level” are new firms like VC-backed start-up A-Frame, which is building from the ground-up a complete cloud-based video production environment that marries the experience of broadcast and post-production experts with forward-thinking IT-based software experts. 

On the multi-screen front, Ericsson introduced its first encoder based on HEVC/H.265 compression technology. The company says that its HEVC implementation offers the potential for users to reduce bandwidth by up to 50%, thereby enabling more efficient delivery of content over multiple platforms, including mobile networks.

Harmonic unveiled a new version of its ProMedia transcoder, aimed at enabling its customers to deliver an integrated multi-screen experience to their subscribers. Harmonic also introduced new members of its senior management team: CMO Peter Alexander, and CTO Krish Padmanabhan, who recently joined the company from Cisco and NetApp, respectively.

Noticeable by their absence on the Harmonic booth at IBC were the familiar Omneon and Rhozet brand names, which have now been absorbed into Harmonic. “Harmonic is a branded house, not a house of brands, and our singular focus is delivering excellent video quality to consumers everywhere,” said Alexander.

The Sony/SES Astra demonstration of live delivery of 4K images over satellite drew a lot of attention.

For many years, 4K images have been trade show “eye candy” for visitors, but at IBC 2012 Sony and SES showed that technology exists today to transmit high quality 4K images over satellite at a manageable 50mbit/s using h.264 compression technology.  The stunning live video images were delivered via an SES satellite to an 84-inch Sony Bravia 4K display.

The demo prompted speculation that 4K will be the “next HD” in terms of consumer adoption and broadcast infrastructure upgrades. Other observers took a more practical approach, saying that the industry might see 4K being used as a high-end production format in near to mid term, but that it will be a long time before broadcasters who have already spent millions on the transition to HDTV decide to upgrade again to 4K.

Indeed, when it comes to broadcast infrastructure upgrades it is operational efficiency, not higher resolution, which appears to be the primary demand of broadcasters. Thus, many vendors at IBC were promoting solutions designed to help broadcasters transition their operations to file-based and IT-oriented workflows. 

One of the ongoing initiatives in this area has been the development by a large number of vendors of integrated IT-based playout technologies, more commonly known as channel-in-a-box (CiaB).  These systems offer the promise of increased operational efficiency and significant cost savings through the integration of previously disparate playout and master control functionality into a single IT-based platform. Over the past several years, major vendors including Grass Valley, Miranda, Snell, Harmonic, and Evertz have offered products.

At IBC 2012, Harris became the latest entrant into the market with the launch of Versio, a CiaB system based on several of the company’s existing technology platforms including the Nexio server family, ADC automation, and Inscriber graphics. 

When describing the new Versio product at the company IBC press conference, Harris Morris said the No. 1 requirement for automated IT-based playout systems is reliability, and that this is an area where Harris Broadcast excels. Morris also emphasized that CiaB platforms rely heavily on automation technology, where Harris Broadcast is an established leader, making the company a natural choice for broadcasters considering integrated IT-based playout.

Although Harris Broadcast touted the fact that their Versio platform is based on the company’s existing technology platforms, it stopped well short of saying that the new system is a direct replacement for its current products, particularly its popular Nexio server family.

Instead the company described Versio as a robust cost-effective way for broadcasters to quickly add new services and digital subchannels channels, and to provide backup in emergencies.

“Channel-in-a-box should be about opening up new possibilities rather than limiting how a broadcaster can operate across multiple on-air scenarios,” said Andrew Warman, senior product manager at Harris Broadcast. “It’s limiting to look at channel-in-a-box as a system replacement for servers, automation, and other play-to-air systems. Broadcasters need freedom to build appropriate workflows for their operations, including external components.”

However, other vendors clearly see the CiaB market differently, and have taken a very different approach than Harris Broadcast, especially those firms that do not have an existing playout server business to protect. 

Snell Chief Architect Neil Maycock said that his company’s ICE platform is not only “ready for prime-time,” it is on the air today delivering high value content for major broadcasters.  Maycock also said that ICE has a unique architecture that enables it to scale from a single channel implementation, through a multi-location centralcasting model, to a large multi-channel playout environment.

PlayBox CEO Vassil Lefterov said he has built his entire business on disrupting the traditional server-based playout market. “We believe our singular focus on this application is a key advantage,” he said.  “Playbox has thousands of live channels on the air today and is working to re-define playout operations for many of our customers.”

Grass Valley, which like Harris has a significant video server business, took a more pragmatic approach.  SVP and CMO Graham Sharp said that “it’s likely CiaB and other IT-based playout systems may ultimately impact everyone’s server business, so we’ve taken the decision to cannibalize our own products where necessary by embracing IT technology, because if we don’t do it to ourselves someone else will.” 

Grass Valley was among the vendors with significant new products. Introductions included a new LDX camera platform that scales from a basic model to a high-end super-slow motion system; a new video server family, and brand new electronics for the Kayenne and Karrera production switchers.  Grass Valley said all its new products feature native 1080p processing, and provide straightforward upgrades via software.

Grass Valley also made bold claims about its future product plans, stating that by 2014 it will have replaced its entire portfolio with all new 1080p, IT-focused products. 

GV’s Sharp also hinted at a major NAB 2013 announcement from Grass Valley: “Next year we will introduce a completely new integrated IP-based platform that is totally format agnostic.” he said.  “We believe this new platform will enable a new way of working that we call non-linear production….”

All Grass Valley products, including those launched at IBC 2012, will be compatible with the new architecture, he said.

Sharp concluded GV press conference by saying: “If there is one take-away from this presentation about Grass Valley, it’s this: We’re back.”

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© Devoncroft Partners. All Rights Reserved.

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Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 4 — the 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, Broadcast Vendor Brand Research, market research, technology trends, Top Broadcast Vendor Brands | Posted by Joe Zaller
Sep 17 2012

This is the seventh in a series of articles about some of the findings from the 2012 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2012 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry.

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This is the fourth post in an occasional series of articles about how broadcast technology vendors were ranked and benchmarked on a variety of metrics by the respondents to the 2012 BBS.

The previous three articles in this series described the 2012 BBS Overall Brand Opinion League Table, the 2012 BBS Net Change in Overall Brand Opinion League Table, and the 2012 BBS Global Brand Opinion Leaders League Table.  These rankings show how the global sample of 2012 BBS respondents rated a variety of broadcast technology vendor brands in terms of their overall opinion of these vendors, and also how their opinions have changed over time.

This post looks at one of the most important metrics for any technology company – innovation.

The product side of the film & broadcast industry is driven by technology and innovation.  All vendors spend heavily on research and development in order to create advanced technologies that make their products stand out from the competition.  Thus innovation is a very important component of the brand image and reputation of vendors in this space.

To find out which broadcast technology vendors are considered to be most highly regarded in terms of innovation, respondents were asked to rank broadcast technology vendor brands for “Innovation” on a scale of 1-10 – with 10 being best in the market, and 1 being worst in the market.  The top 30 ranked brands for innovation are shown below for the global sample of all respondents.


Please note that these results are shown in alphabetical order, NOT in the order in which they were ranked in the study. 

 

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There are a wide variety of companies on this list, including large and small firms; single product and multi-product firms; global and regional players; and audio and video technology providers.

Let’s look specifically at the how these companies and their products were ranked in the 2012 BBS, beginning with products and technology.

As shown in the chart below, these companies make products in 22 of the 30 product categories that we covered in the 2012 BBS.

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2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table — Frequency of Product Categories:

 

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The top product categories provided by brands in the 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table are audio vendors – audio consoles and microphones each appear four times in this ranking. This is a change from last year, when the top product categories were microphones, video transport, and signal processing / interfacing / modular.

Does company size play a role in innovation?  Larger companies offer more products and are consequently used in more places than their smaller counterparts.  But this does not necessarily translate into innovation.

The chart below breaks down the 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table by the number of product categories (as defined by the 2012 BBS segmentation) offered by each brand listed in this ranking.

 

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2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table – # of Product Categories Offered by Vendor

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Although the top two product categories in 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table, just over one-third of the vendors in this ranking are pure-play audio vendors.

There are also many more hardware companies in the ranking versus software companies.

Interestingly, this ranking is dominated by companies that provide products in a single product category – 18 out of 30 brands in this list. This suggests that focused companies who apply their efforts to specialist product areas are often able to generate more innovation in the eyes of the market.

At the same time, larger companies are also represented on this list of the broadcast industry’s top innovators. Snell provides products in the most categories in the 2012 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table, followed by Omneon and Sony – please note that 2012 is likely the last time that we will cover Omneon as a stand-alone brand as it has now been fully absorbed into Harmonic.

Of course, companies are listed here based on how many 2012 BBS product categories they produce, which is not an absolute measure of the products offered be each vendor on this list. There are some very large companies on the list above who appear in just one 2012 BBS category.

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Please keep the following in mind when reviewing this information: All data these charts are presented in alphabetical order, not in the order brands were ranked by respondents to the 2012 BBS. All data in this article measures the responses of all non-vendor participants in the 2012 BBS, regardless of organization type, organization size, job title, geographic location, or purchasing authority — responses based on individual organization types or geographic locations may be very different from the results shown in this article.  There is a minimum sample size requirement for any brand to be included in any cut of the data presented in this article. There were a total of 152 brands covered in the 2012 BBS, for a complete list please click here. Granular analysis of these results is available as part of various paid-for reports based on the 2012 BBS data set. For more information about this report, please contact Devoncroft Partners.

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Devoncroft Partners has published a variety of reports from 2012 BBS data.  For more information, please get in touch.

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Related Content:

The 2012 Big Broadcast Survey – Information and available reports

The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Tracking the Evolution of Broadcast Industry Trends 2009 – 2012

Analyzing Where is Money Being Spent in the Broadcast Industry – The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 1 – The 2012 BBS Overall Brand Opinion League Table

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 2 – The 2012 BBS Net Change of Overall Brand Opinion League Table

Ranking Broadcast Technology Vendors Part 3 — 2012 BBS Global Brand Opinion Leaders League Table. 

Last Year:  The 2011 BBS Broadcast Technology Vendor Innovation League Table

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© Devoncroft Partners. All Rights Reserved. Findings May Not Be Reproduced or Quoted Without Written Permission from Devoncroft Partners.

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Analyzing Where is Money Being Spent in the Broadcast Industry – The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index

broadcast industry technology trends, broadcast industry trends, broadcast technology market research, technology trends | Posted by Joe Zaller
Aug 08 2012

This is the third in a series of articles about some of the findings from the 2012 Big Broadcast Survey (BBS), a global study of broadcast industry trends, technology purchasing plans, and benchmarking of broadcast technology vendor brands. Nearly 10,000 broadcast professionals in 100+ countries took part in the 2012 BBS, making it the largest and most comprehensive market study ever conducted in the broadcast industry.

 

In a previous post, I discussed The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, which shows which industry trends are most commercially important to the global sample of 2012 BBS respondents. 

Like any list of trends, this list includes a mix of current and future commercial priorities, some of which are being done today on a wide scale, some of which are in a trial phase, and others which have not yet been widely implemented.

By a wide margin, the top trend in the 2012 Trend Index is “multi-platform content delivery.”  Other important trends include the transition to file-based workflows, the transition to HDTV operations, and IP networking and content delivery.

Tracking broadcast industry trends and their evolution is useful because this shows what customers are discussing and thinking about implementing in the future.  However, a high ranking in an industry trend Index does not necessarily mean that this is where customers are spending their technology budgets in 2012 and 2013. 

Thus, it’s important to make a clear distinction between what broadcast customers are thinking and talking about in the future (industry trends), and where they are spending their technology budgets today.

Technology spending in the broadcast industry tends to be project-based. Projects might include international elections and sporting championships, to the long-term, planned capital upgrades of broadcast infrastructure and facilities.  Thus, an understanding of the major projects being implemented by broadcaster professionals around the world provides useful insight into the capital expenditure plans of the industry.

Projects represent where broadcast technology budgets are being spent today, not just what people are talking about doing in the future. 

In order to better understand this dynamic, were presented broadcast professionals with a list of major projects and asked them to indicate which ones they are currently implementing or are planning / budgeting to implement within the next year.  Their responses were then used to create the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index, which is shown below. 

 

 

When compared to The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, which can be found here, The 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index illustrates where broadcast technology budgets are being spent today.

Our research shows that the difference between what people are thinking and talking about (trends), and where they are planning to spend their budgets (projects) can be quite dramatic.

For example although “multi-platform content delivery” dominated the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index, the corresponding project “distribute and monetize content on multiple distribution platforms,” ranked #9 out of 17 in the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index.

In terms of where money is being spent in the broadcast industry today, more broadcast technology buyers cited “upgrading infrastructure for HD/ 3Gbps operations” than any other project.  This project correlates directly with “transition to HDTV operations,” which was ranked #3 in the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index.

Although the transition to HDTV operations is certainly not new, it remains one of the key drivers of broadcast technology spending in 2012 and 2013.  Even as a small number of broadcasters announce that they are close to completing their decade-long transition to HDTV, many broadcasters are still in the early stages of the move to HD.  This is especially true in emerging economies where there is still a great deal of both standard definition and analog infrastructure. 

On a global basis, the transition to HDTV has consistently been the top driver of broadcast technology spending for the past several years — it was also the top project last year in the 2011 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index – and it appears that this will be the case for the foreseeable future.

Significantly, the move to HDTV is represented in multiple places in the Project Index.  The projects ranked #3, #5, #7, and #10 – upgrading transmission & distribution capabilities; building new studios / OB vans; launching new channels; and upgrading newsroom operations – are also related to the transition to HDTV operations, as these transmission upgrades, new studios, new channels, and upgraded news environments will almost certainly be at least HD capable, if not fully HD.

Coming in as the #2 ranked project on this Index is “Install or enhance workflow / asset management system.”  It also achieved the #2 rank in 2011, but was much further behind the transition to HDTV in terms of overall importance to broadcast customers.

Although asset management is a relatively small and specialized market, it has become increasingly important over the past several years as broadcast customers move to file-based workflows and plan for multi-platform content delivery.  The take-away here appears to be that once a broadcaster has made the transition to file-based workflows, the strategic emphasis shifts to finding, deploying, and monetizing content in the most efficient way possible.  Thus asset and workflow management are likely to become increasingly important as customers move to business models focused on multi-platform content delivery, and driven by sophisticated IT-based systems.

The rest of the list offers a mixed picture of project activity across the world, and includes everything from upgrading audio and newsrooms to multi-platform distribution being chosen in large numbers. 

As mentioned earlier, multi-platform content delivery ranked #9 in the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index.  It also was ranked #9 in 2011. Despite the importance to organizations of monetizing content on multiple distribution platforms, it appears many broadcast professionals have not solidified their business plans in this area.  This likely means that there will be significant opportunities in the future for broadcast technology vendors who offer a suite of products for multi-platform content delivery.  The current excitement surrounding OTT video and connected TV is evidence of this, but this is still a small proportion of the money being spent on broadcasting technology in 2012.

Interestingly, despite the fact that they may have the potential to deliver increased efficiencies and new revenue streams, there are several major projects that appear towards the bottom of this list. The two most obvious instances are the low ranking of “consolidate operations in regional hubs (centralcasting), and “outsourced operations (playout),” which are the bottom two projects on this list. This is because although these are high value projects, they will be undertaken by a relatively small number of organizations — i.e. large broadcasters.  This highlights that the 2012 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index is a graphic representation of the number of all planned projects across all respondents, regardless of organization type, size, or location.  It does not measure size, value, or relative commercial importance of planned projects.  Please keep this in mind when reading this information and interpreting these findings.

 

All data in this article measures the responses of all non-vendor participants in the 2012 BBS, regardless of organization type, organization size, job title or geographic location. Responses of individual organization types or geographic locations may be very different. Granular analysis of these results is available as part of the full 2012 BBS Global Market Report. For more information about this report, please contact Devoncroft Partners.

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Related Content:

The 2012 Big Broadcast Survey – Information and available reports

The 2011 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Trend Index

Tracking the Evolution of Broadcast Industry Trends 2009 – 2012

Where is Money Being Spent in the Broadcast Industry in 2011?  The 2011 BBS Broadcast Industry Global Project Index.   

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