Asharq News launches mobile vertical live streaming platform using AI

Asharq News has achieved a leap in delivering news content across multiple platforms with the launch of a mobile vertical live streaming format based on artificial intelligence (AI).

This is the first time this type of technology has been deployed in the Arab world, and it is only the second media entity across the globe to offer this service.

Asharq News now uses Auto ReZone solution from French tech company Wildmoka, which uses AI and machine learning to enable automatic, 24/7 and real time transformation of horizontal layouts into vertical.

Dr Nabeel Al-Khatib, general manager of Asharq News, said: “At Asharq News, it is our core priority to provide a seamless and impactful experience for our audiences in the Arab world and beyond through leveraging cutting edge technology and implementing digital transformation.”

He pointed out that media consumption today is increasingly dependent on smart devices, media organisations need to take into consideration the rapid adoption of technology to ensure a smooth viewing user experience. “Asharq News is seeking to lead this transformation in the region.”

The case for providing content in a vertical format is clear. A large majority of people, especially among younger generations, do not turn their devices when watching videos on mobile. This is due to the basic ergonomics of mobile devices that are designed to fit into the palm of the user’s hand. It requires two hands to hold a phone horizontally, so it is more convenient and natural for people to hold smartphones vertically when watching video.

Steven Cheak, creative services and digital director at Asharq News, commented: “With this breakthrough solution, we can finally resolve the challenge that has puzzled news broadcasters for years; despite smartphones becoming the primary channels for news consumption, news broadcasters continue to produce horizontal, linear format TV content. With Auto ReZone, we simply send our horizontal 16:9 live streams to the cloud platform and the solution seamlessly returns the recomposed vertical live stream, keeping all the graphics and information intact.”

The Wildmoka cloud-native technology can transform horizontal frame layouts into vertical ones in real time. Auto ReZone works for live, recorded, and archived content.

“We are delighted to see Auto ReZone entering a new region” explained Cristian Livadiotti, CEO of Wildmoka. He added: “We are sure that with this innovation, Asharq News will stand apart from other news providers and engage new and younger audiences.”

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