Looking ahead to a busy 2020 with Euro Media Group
By Timo Koch, director of operations, Euro Media Group
We expect the entire IP workflow in 2020 to become more mature. Most suppliers are working hard on transforming their SDI architecture into IP, and those who already are IP, will take IP further through the whole chain.
IT competences will be crucial in the new workflow, of which network controlling is key and will change the EIC roles. A more advanced IP workflow will allow the service providers to become more flexible, modular and scalable in their set up, which should result in a more tailormade offering to their clients.
Increasing remote productions
Following the growth of IP infrastructures, we expect the number of remote productions to increase significantly, which will result in more smaller vehicles across the OB fleet to service remote needs, as well as a growth in connected remote centres and media centres across the world.
Also, connectivity providers will play a more important role in the broadcast production chain. UHD as production format will become more widespread, with the big sports events in 2020 as the main driver.
Along with UHD in sports, HDR will conquer a large marketshare. Also, wireless productions will embrace UHD HDR as the format on live long-range RF productions and aerial filming.
On the lower end of this market, 4G and 5G bonded cellular connections will replace traditional RF and SNG usage.
Watching the environmental impact
An even bigger focus will arise on the environmental impact of our industry, looking at carbon footprints, plastic usage, and increased sustainability. In this area, remote production helps a lot.
We see an increased demand for augmented reality (AR) graphics solutions, including in the specialist camera field. More in general, image enhancements, digital services and applications for multi-screen experience will become more integrated.
Esports can be expected to evolve into a first tier sport and will require more and different services than traditional broadcast productions. This totally virtual environment calls for new production functionality, as in-game enhancements, to allow the audience to take different viewpoints than the players.
Simplified production services
We see a growing interest in all kind of simplified production services, to allow lower tier sports to be produced for the first time or to better control costs on existing productions. Cloud production will become reality, due to improved connectivity, and will result in a decrease of proprietary hardware solutions.
As public internet speeds increase along with 5G mobile coverage, lower tier sports can move away from the usual broadcast circuits and easily create their own over the top (OTT) platforms. These platforms will become strategic tools for the rights holders.
A further shift of broadcasting rights towards the Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon and Netflix (GAFAN) companies, and traditional broadcasters joining ranks to take on the likes of those.
More generally, the consolidation and the clustering of media groups will continue and the boundaries between leagues, rights holders and broadcasters will fade out. Services coming from different niche players today will be bundled into a full package offering.