Trial Shows That Continuum Allows Broadcasters to Easily Extend Services Using OTT
LAS VEGAS – April 24, 2017 – Here at NAB 2017, Bitcentral, a provider of digital and broadcast video workflow solutions, announced today that WRAL-TV, the NBC affiliate in Raleigh, North Carolina, is currently streaming a 24×7 mix of live recorded and syndicated news programming using Bitcentral’s award-winning Continuum™ integrated production, playout and publishing workflow solution. This experience shows that Continuum enables news-producing TV stations to maximize the value of their premium content by leveraging OTT technologies for delivery to smartphones, tablets, PCs and other consumer devices.
The first step in WRAL’s Continuum OTT workflow is the retrieval of promos, ads and other assets from Bitcental’s Oasis asset management system, as well as recording of live feeds. Continuum then applies graphics and overlays to better orient viewers watching on mobile devices and to brand the content. Next, the content is run through a highly flexible automation system – rather than a traditional Newsroom Control System (NRCS) – that allows optimal mixing of live recorded and shared content in the playlist for OTT distribution. Finally, Continuum’s output is compressed into H.264 and “uplinked” to the Cloud for formatting and distribution to HLS-compliant mobile devices, PC/Mac browsers and other devices, enabling a full multiscreen OTT experience.
“The Continuum trial has been going well and has given us the confidence that we can take full advantage of OTT to maximize our multiscreen offerings,” said Pete Sockett, Director of Engineering and Operations at WRAL-TV. “Expanding our streaming news services is a strategic priority and we chose to trial Continuum based on our previous positive experiences using Bitcentral’s other newsroom solutions. The support they have provided us during the trial has been tremendous.”
Several other affiliate stations in the U.S. are also conducting trials of Continuum. Like WRAL, the other stations are also reporting positive initial results and the stations are reliably providing live recorded news programming, as well as shared stories across stations groups, delivered 24/7 over-the-top to viewers’ mobile devices. Workflows being trialed include some digital story first workflows, as well as unique graphics experiences optimized for mobile and PC viewing environments.
“WRAL-TV and other stations across the nation need solutions like Continuum in order to expand their audiences, particularly with viewers who tend to favor on-demand programming delivered via OTT,” said Fred Fourcher, CEO of Bitcentral. “WRAL’s use of Continuum shows that it enables TV stations to easily and cost-effectively play in this online world and to turn their locally-produced and focused news programming into premium content that local viewers can enjoy on any device. The valuable data and feedback from the WRAL-TV trial will help us enhance Continuum and further refine its capabilities.”
Complementing its OTT-optimized integrated production, playout and publishing workflow capabilities, Continuum enables broadcasters to take advantage of multiple monetization options, ranging from direct-sold spot advertising by local station sales teams and managed through traffic systems, to digital video advertising transacted on exchanges in private marketplaces. Bitcentral is also working with other broadcast technology vendors to integrate Continuum into a broader, integrated solution to enable broadcast stations and groups wishing to get up-and-running quickly with OTT services and to take advantage of various monetization models.
Bitcentral is demonstrating Continuum and its other newsroom workflow, automation and master control automation solutions in its NAB booth (SU2016).
Bitcentral provides solutions that maximize the value of media workflows. Our reliable and flexible product offerings represent our close partnering and intent listening to customers and world class support to back them up. Since 2000, we have gained a trusted partnership reputation with news and media customers, providing them with efficient media workflows that result in higher productivity – all while helping them increase their audience reach and competitive market position. We design forward looking, pragmatically designed and exceptionally reliable media solutions in news, master control and emerging-platform content.
We are dedicated to creating a culture of proactive sharing and listening to understand to stay close to our customers and partners as we solve real-world problems and an environment that attracts and retains the right talent. See how at www.es.bitcentral.com