Earlier this week our London, Boston and LA NAB 2016 teams crawled back into their offices, still dazzled by the neon Vegas lights and the ear-rattling clink clink of fruit machines. We gave them a chance to rehydrate and cash in their casino winnings before sitting them down to discuss the key trends and events of NAB 2016. So many highlights, but for them, these four letters stole the show – VR and IP.
So…in case you’ve been living under a rock for the past year, there’s this ‘new’ thing called virtual reality (VR). And it was virtually everywhere.
I know what you’re thinking. “This VR malarkey…couldn’t it just be like that whole 3D TV thing a few years back that we were told to love and accept?” Apparently not.
According to attendees at NAB, VR has very real-world applications beyond gaming and theme parks. NAB 2016 illustrated that far from being another 3D fad, VR is beginning to be harnessed by some really creative minds looking to extend VR usage into new market segments. We saw new VR cameras from Nokia, GoPro and Teradek and a really cool 360 degree camera from Kodak. And along with new hardware we also saw Adobe announce new VR workflow solutions as part of Premiere Pro. So you see, VR isn’t just for gaming!
In addition, I’ve also been reliably informed that it was rather entertaining watching visitors to the Deluxe booth scrabbling around on the floor trying to seek out whatever they were trying to track down in their cosy or scary virtual worlds. I for one welcome our new VR overlords. They’re certainly more endearing than those old overlords that kept telling us how great 3D TV was.
Along with VR, IP was again a massive trend at NAB this year. The industry is all about the transition to IP and IP workflows as the saviour for broadcasters and content owners looking to escape their legacy broadcast hardware and move to a virtualised, data centre-based and more flexible, efficient future.
NAB is a showcase for the media and entertainment technology powerhouses with their pristine booths and slick presentations. And indeed all of the IT giants had a story to tell around IP, but dig a little deeper and walk a lot further and brodcasters were finding the next biggest thing lurking at the back of the South Hall. For the many it was all about Aperi, launching the first native-IP virtualised infrastructure to allow broadcasters to react quickly to changes in how content is managed and delivered.
So there you have it folks in a very small nutshell! To put it plainly four letters, VR and IP, were the talk of the show. And we had our own highlights of course, with many of our clients picking up awards:
- Aspera won a Digital Video magazine Best of Show Award and Streaming Media Best Product of NAB 2016 award for its FASPstream software line
- Vizrt also won a TV Technology magazine Best of Show Award for Viz Story
Finally, if we could, Red Lorry Yellow Lorry would also like to nominate the ‘White House’ trained security guards that were in attendance as usual this year. “SIR, YOU CANNOT GO IN THERE. I REPEAT YOU CANNOT USE THAT DOOR!” Now if you excuse me I’m off to lament about the cost of VR headsets.