Webinar: Creating brand loyalty and new TV revenues with next-generation voice control

With smart speakers, mobile phones and computers all sporting voice-controlled interfaces, it’s no surprise that smart TVs, Apple TVs and others can be voice controlled. This webinar looks at how much consumers expect control and what they expect.

Getting voice right, can be a really big differentiator in terms of enjoyment and confidence of a service and the speakers discuss how that can enhance retention and growth.

As seen with a recent update to Apple’s HomePod which allows it to recognise who’s speaking, voice can be used for personalisation, security and privacy when carefully applied to the service.

The webinar will also discuss fraud reduction and ecommerce opportunities.

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Speakers

Sebastian Reeve Sebastian Reeve
Director, EMEA, Intelligent Engagement
Nuance Communications
Pieter Vervoort Pieter Vervoort
VP Entertainment Products,
Liberty Global
Daniel Whaley Daniel Whaley
Senior Architect, Product (Voice & AI)
BBC

Video: BBC Cardiff Central Square – Update

It’s being closely watched throughout the industry, a long-in-the-making project to deploy SMPTE ST 2110 throughout a fully green-field development. Its failure would be a big setback for the push to a completely network-based broadcast workflow.

The BBC Cardiff Central Square project is nearing completion now and is a great example of the early-adopter approach to bringing cutting-edge, complex, large-scale projects to market. They chose a single principle vendor so that they could work closely in partnership at a time when the market for ST 2110 was very sparse. This gave them leverage over the product roadmap and allowed to the for the tight integration which would be required to bring this project to market.

Nowadays, the market for ST 2110 products continues to mature and whilst it has still quite a way to go, it has also come a long way in the past four years. Companies embarking similar projects now have a better choice of products and some may now feel they can start to pick ‘best of breed’ rather than taking the BBC approach. Whichever approach is taken there is still a lot to be gained by following and learning from the mistakes and successes of others. Fortunately, Mark Patrick, Lead Architect on the project is here to provide an update on the project.

Mark starts by giving and overview of the project, its scale and its aims. He presents the opportunities and challenges it presents and the key achievements and milestones passed to date.

Live IP has benefits and risks. Mark takes some time to explain the benefits of the flexibility and increasingly lower cost of the infrastructure and weighs them agains the the risks which include the continually developing standards and skills challenges

The progress overview names Grass Vally as the main vendor, control via BNCS having being designed and virtualised, ST 2110 network topology deployed and now the final commissioning and acceptance testing is in progress.

The media topology for the system uses an principal of an A and a B network plus a separate control network. It’s fundamentally a leaf and spine network and Mark shows how this links in to both the Grass Valley equipment but also the audio equipment via Dante and AES67. Mark takes some time to discuss the separate networks they’ve deployed for the audio part of the project, driven by compatibility issues but also within the constraints of this project, it was better to separate the networks rather than address the changes necessary to force them together.

PTP timing is discussed with a nod to the fact that PTP design can be difficult and that it can be expensive too. NMOS issues are also actively being worked on and remains an outstanding issue in terms of getting enough vendors to support it, but also having compatible systems once an implementation is deployed. This has driven the BBC to use NMOS in a more limited way than desired and creating fall-back systems.

From this we can deduce, if it wasn’t already understood, that interoperability testing is a vital aspect of the project, but Mark explains that formalised testing (i.e. IT-style automated) is really important in creating a uniform way of ensuring problems have been fully addressed and there are no regressions. ST 2110 systems are complex and fault finding can be similarly complex and time consuming.

Mark leaves us by explaining what keeps him awake at night which includes items such as lack of available test equipment, lack of single-stream UHD support and NMOS which leads him to a few comments on ST 2110 readiness such as the need for vendors to put much more effort into configuration and management tools.

Anyone with an interest in IP in broadcast will be very grateful at Mark’s, and the BBC’s, willingness to share the project’s successes and challenges in such a constructive way.

Watch now!

Speaker

Mark Patrick Mark Patrick
Lead Architect,
BBC Major Projects Infrastructure

Video: Securing NMOS Apps

The still-growing NMOS suite of specifications from AMWA defines ways in which your IP network can find and register new devices plugged in to it (e.g. camera, microphone etc.), manage their connections and control them. They fit neatly along side the SMPTE ST 2110 suite of standards which define the way that the essences (video, audio, metadata) are sent over networks intended for professional media.

As such, they are core to a network and as the market for uncompressed media products matures, the attention is on the details such as whether they scale and security.

In this talk, Simon Rankine from BBC R&D starts by explaining the objectives which means looking at the different aspects of security which is split into three; securing data transfer, ensuring data goes to the right place, ensuring only authorised people can act.

TLS, standing for Transport Layer Security, is the same protocol used for secure websites; those which start with https://. It is also referred to by the name of the protocol it replaced, SSL. Given the NMOS APIs are sent over HTTP, TLS is a perfect match for the use case. TLS provides not only the ability to encrypt the connection but also provides the basis for certificate exchange which allows us trust that the data is being sent to the right place. Simon then covers ciphers and TLS versions before talking about certificate management.

This talk was given at the IP Showcase at NAB 2019.

Watch now!

Speaker

Simon Rankine Simon Rankine
Research Engineer,
BBC R&D

Webinar: Next Generation Audio & DVB

Webinar Date: 18th March 2019
Time: 14:00 GMT / 15:00 CET

Object oriented audio is a relatively new audio technique which doesn’t simply send audio as one track or two, but it sends individual audio objects – simplistically we can think of these as audio samples – which also come with some position information.

With non-object-orientated audio, there is very little a speaker system can do to adjust the audio to match. It was either created for 8 speakers, 6, or 2 etc. So if you have a system that only has 4 speakers or they are in unusual places, it’s a compromise to it sound right.

Object oriented audio sends the position information for some of the audio which means that the decoder can work out how much of the sound to put in each speaker to best represent that sound for whatever room and speaker set-up it has.

AC-4 from Dolby is one technology which allows objects to be sent with the audio. It still supports conventional 5.1 style sound but can also contain up to 7 audio objects. AC-4 is one NGA technology adopted by DVB for DASH.

In this webinar, Simon Tuff from the BBC discusses what the Audio Video Coding (AVC) experts of DVB have been working on to introduce Next Generation Audio (NGA) to the DVB specifications over recent years. With the latest version of TS 101 154, DVB’s guidelines for the use of video and audio coding in broadcast and broadband applications, being published by ETSI, it seems like a great time to unpack the audio part of the tool box and share the capabilities of NGA via a webinar.

No registration needed. Click here to watch on the day.

Speaker

Simon Tuff Simon Tuff
Principal Technologist
BBC