Feed aggregator

IBC Sneak Peek: GatesAir Adds Intraplex Features

Radio World - Tue, 09/10/2019 - 07:15

GatesAir is adding a video feature to its Intraplex Ascent IP audio multistream transport platform. The Ascent SRT Gateway, “SRT” for Secure Reliable Transport,” will transport any real-time video protocol, the company says.

It also has GatesAir’s Dynamic Stream Splicing which utilizes a secondary stream for signal reception assurance against errors or packet dropouts.

GatesAir VP and GM for the Intraplex Product Group Keyur Parikh explained, “Since our new Ascent SRT Gateway application supports stream splicing, we can effectively reduce latency for SRT retransmission, and optimize network redundancy for video distribution. … “This is especially useful for our customers who are distributing real-time video and audio over microwave, fiber and IP connections, and transporting those high-bandwidth streams to multiple studios or transmitter sites.”

He adds, “The Ascent SRT Gateway application scales very seamlessly with its multi-core hardware platform, opening a broad diversity of media transport applications to support national TV or radio networks.”

IBC Stand: 8.D60

Info: www.gatesair.com

The post IBC Sneak Peek: GatesAir Adds Intraplex Features appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Exhibitor Viewpoint: Frank Foti and Tom Swidarski, The Telos Alliance

Radio World - Tue, 09/10/2019 - 04:00

IBC2019 is almost here. Between now and then Radio World will conduct several short Q&As with manufacturers about their plans and offerings, to help you get the most out of the big annual trade show. Frank Foti is the founder of Omnia Audio, now a part of the Telos Alliance and is executive chairman of the Telos Alliance; Tom Swidarski is CEO of the Telos Alliance.

Frank Foti

Radio World: How has business been for the company since last year’s IBC Show?

Frank Foti: Business has been up for us across the entire portfolio. AoIP continues to grow as it migrates deeper into other sections of broadcast, especially television.

Tom Swidarski:  Broadcasters who have held out are starting to realize that there is no time like the present to convert to IP infrastructure. We invented broadcast AoIP, so we’ve got the most mature technology available on the market today, and the biggest names in broadcast trust us. This drives business. Our successes are also attributable to the increased alignment in our sales, marketing and product development teams. We’ve debuted a new product introduction process that decreases our time to market and we’ve standardized the manufacturing process. The result is a nimbleness that lets us both lead the industry in innovation and respond quickly to the evolving audio landscape. You’ll see that evidenced by the amount of new product introductions to the international market at IBC this year.

RW: What are you hearing from your customers about their business outlook this year? In what areas should we expect growth or the most interesting projects?

Foti: Well, it’s a multipronged dialog really. On one hand, we’re reconnecting with companies who reorganized for various business reasons. And on the other hand, we’re in deep discussions about platform migration and paradigm shifts. It’s exciting, and what we once saw as potential is now reality. For growth, the action is network and cloud-based.

Swidarski: Another challenge is the fierce competition for the ear. Our clients have to be wherever their customers are and embrace the ways in which their listeners consume content. They have to be ready to change course on a dime, and are realizing the advantage of being able to choose products from various vendors to “roll their own” systems. This underscores the critical importance of interoperability and manufacturer as a partner. For our part, we’re helping clients through these transitions by moving toward software, automated solutions, and virtualization.

RW:  Within the last year or so the two large station ownership groups have emerged from bankruptcy. Are you seeing any increase in equipment sales or interest? What is your feeling for the overall health of the radio industry?  

Foti: We sure do live in interesting times! It’s a good step forward when those companies are able to emerge from their challenges, and kudos to their teams for doing so. That’s not easy work. Those companies’ interest in our offerings was always there, and now we’re fortunately catching up on the business side with them. As for the health of the radio industry, we know it has a pulse!

Swidarski: The term “radio” used to be reserved for analog, terrestrial, over-the-air delivery. That model is still valid, alive, and well, but radio is evolving and diversifying into digital terrestrial delivery, streaming, and on-demand content. The popularity of smart speakers — the new table radio — is testament to this, as is the continued increase in podcast listenership. The good news is that radio is going through a renaissance, and the demand for audio content has never been higher. Our customers are producing quality and a large quantity of content like never before, and they are looking to companies that understand their evolving needs and pain points and who respond to them with innovative solutions. The broadcasters with the best tools and the most forward-thinking strategies and facilities are going to prosper.

RW:  You’ve been active in the equipment manufacturing market for years. What’s the biggest problem or challenge facing manufacturers right now? Does the trade row between the United States and China greatly affect you?

Foti: The goofiness between the U.S. and China has had a bit of impact. It’s unfortunate to see the leaders of these great nations act so childishly. (We sure could use Tony Soprano here.) Actually, there’s always some challenge in our world — components have life cycles that end, manufacturing schedules change, research/development can be a wildcard, and day-to-day business is as dynamic as an audio processor. We are used to being flexible and responsive enough to react to these challenges quickly and directly, leaving things for the most part, business as usual.

RW: What new goodies will your company be showing? Why should attendees visit your stand?

Swidarski: In Stand 8.D47 we’re again focusing on solutions rather than products, and thinking of customers as partners. Content is content, despite delivery method (whether it’s a podcast, radio, TV, or streaming), and our goal at TA is to inspire broadcasters to create the most exciting audio experiences imaginable.

Foti: Well, if I told you, I’d have to kill you. There is indeed some stellar news that will be revealed on Day One of the show from Axia at our press conference. In addition to that, we’ll have the new Omnia MPX Node running in the stand. It’s the first hardware implementation that carries FM-Stereo MPX over IP at a bitrate as low as 320 kbps. We’ll have tons of new TV products, as well as a host of cool stuff for the growing Infinity IP Intercom platform, including Infinity Link site-to-site connectivity. It’s going to be a big show for us!

RW: Going by the interest on our website, AoIP technology is on the top of the list for product acquisition and upgrades. Is that something you are seeing and if so, how are you addressing that?

Foti: What you’re seeing in interest is on point. It is the hot topic. For those not working in the IP ecosphere, their days could be numbered.

Swidarski: Having brought this technology to the broadcast market, The Telos Alliance always has and will continue to be AoIP’s biggest champion. It’s one of our key pillars.

RW: What do you anticipate will be the most significant technology trend at the 2019 IBC Show?

Foti: Cloud, IP and web-based applications and products.

Swidarski: That’s right. The march towards virtualization in the broadcast industry continues each year with automation systems, call management software, and streaming processing offered with great flexibility. Virtualization is particularly possible with the wide adoption of audio over IP. Because AoIP converts audio signals into IP packets, it’s perfectly suited for routing and processing within virtual environments. Our own march to virtualization comes in the form of what we call the “Hyperstudio Experience,” which will be demoed in our booth again this year. We have virtualized streaming processors, AoIP AES67 audio drivers, phone hybrids, automation and control logic systems, remote control and mixing applications, and entire mix engines that could be used as a single Virtual Radio Production System. This could be deployed on a local server, external server, or used in conjunction with the cloud, creating a production environment that is scalable, adaptable, flexible, and future-proof while enjoying all of the sonic benefits that its rackmount counterparts are so well known for. Within a business model that makes it affordable by organizations large and small.

RW: Will you be attending any sessions or looking forward to any events?

Foti: We always look forward to the reaction of our clients as we share new offerings, but also like to lead with education. We’ll participate in the IP Showcase, where Martin Dyster will be leading “Reinventing Intercom with SMPTE 2210-30” on Sept. 14 at 2:30. Greg Shay will also be talking about “Investigating Media Over IP Multicast Hurdles in Containerized Platforms” on Sept. 15 at 3:30. We look forward to catching up with everyone at our press conference and reception on Sept. 13, 4:00 at stand 8.D47. Drinks and snacks will be at the ready after a long day on the show floor!

RW: You’re a show veteran, how has the show changed since your first visit?

Foti: IBC, like NAB, is a fraternity. A place to connect, network, share and gather information, and enjoy the comradery of those in our industry. In that regard, not much has changed, aside from those who’ve moved on or changed positions.

Swidarski: I agree. I’ve been in the industry a couple of years now, and I’m continually impressed with the spirit of the broadcast industry.

[Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Exhibitor Viewpoint: Frank Foti and Tom Swidarski, The Telos Alliance appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Sneak Peek: MultiCAM Priortizes Live Assistance

Radio World - Tue, 09/10/2019 - 02:00

Among the products that MultiCAM Systems is set to demonstrate at IBC2019 is its Multicam Server Box and Multicam Assist platform.

The Server Box has been updated to support ISO recording that allows operators to record individual sources as well as the live program. Graphics can also be added on top of the recorded materials.

The Multicam Assist, meanwhile, features an intuitive interface to manage content data and to operate the Scenes. There is also a second screen module available for operators and an import data section to automate the filling of content data.

Multicam artificial intelligence makes both of these products capable of being fully automated.

IBC Stand: 12.E56

 Info: www.multicam-systems.com

[Want more information like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Sneak Peek: MultiCAM Priortizes Live Assistance appeared first on Radio World.

Industry Professionals Head to Amsterdam for IBC2019

Radio World - Tue, 09/10/2019 - 00:30

AMSTERDAM Radio engineers and managers from around the world will once again be making the annual autumn trip to Amsterdam for IBC2019, which bills itself as “the world’s most influential media, entertainment and technology show.”

The statistics for the five-day event convey its scale the exhibition covers 15 halls and hosts over 1,700 exhibitors spanning the broadcast industry. The accompanying conference features more than 400 speakers. In total, 2018’s event saw approximately 55,000 people from some 150 countries pass through the doors of Amsterdam’s RAI Convention Center.

This year’s IBC Conference is themed “Consumers First: A New Era in Media,” with keynote speakers examining the current state of the industry and sharing their visions for the future. These include Max Amordeluso, EU lead evangelist for Amazon Alexa; Cécile Frot-Coutaz, head of EMEA at YouTube; and Arnaud de Puyfontaine, chairman of Vivendi, the parent company of Universal Music Group and Canal+ Group.

Radio is well-represented. WorldDAB hosts a conference session on Monday morning, entitled “Radio distribution strategies for a connected world.” The panel will explore radio’s migration to digital and look at broadcast digital radio’s place in the distribution mix. It will offer recommendations and advice on how broadcasters can assess all digital distribution platforms, to make informed investment choices today and to safeguard broadcast radio for tomorrow.

“Our focus at this year’s IBC is to help broadcasters understand the opportunities and challenges of digitizing radio across all platforms,” explains Bernie O’Neill, project director for WorldDAB. “We’ll give them the facts and information needed to develop an informed radio distribution strategy that will balance the budget as well as safeguard their audience and business models.”

Meanwhile, a Saturday morning “Tech Talk” at the Conference will explore voice interfaces that deliver interactive personalized radio, a cloud-based live production and playout system, controlled straight from a browser, as well as tools to help stations respond to an ever-demanding, interactive audience.

The Digital Radio Mondiale Consortium also has two sessions, themed “DRM Smart Radio For All,” looking at the practical implementation of DRM in various parts of the world. Friday’s event features the Gospell receiver, while on Saturday, Nautel hosts a session on the latest DRM implementation news on its booth.

[Read: Elber Showcases Latest Gear]

At the exhibition, as in previous years, radio suppliers are mainly centered in Hall 8, though there’s always plenty of interest across other halls. This year’s exhibitors include GatesAir, Inovonics, On-Hertz, The Telos Alliance, WaveArt, WorldCast Systems and Wheatstone Corp., plus other leaders such as DEVA, Digigram, 2wcom, WinMedia, Tieline RCS, Broadcast Bionics and transmission provider Arqiva.

IBC 2019 runs from Sept. 13–17, at the RAI Convention Center in Amsterdam.

[Want more information like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post Industry Professionals Head to Amsterdam for IBC2019 appeared first on Radio World.

Actions

FCC Media Bureau News Items - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 22:00
.

Pleadings

FCC Media Bureau News Items - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 22:00
.

Applications

FCC Media Bureau News Items - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 22:00
.

Broadcast Actions

FCC Media Bureau News Items - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 22:00
.

NABLF Launches Training for First-Time Managers

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 18:31

The NAB Leadership Foundation launched an online education series for first-time radio and television station managers as they transition from individual contributor to experienced team leader.
The First Time Manager Series uses interactive sessions and offers online resources to help bridge the gaps in management training for new supervisors. It teaches them to communicate, delegate and motivate more effectively.

“The NAB Leadership Foundation noticed a gap in training for new managers and responded by developing this program to provide the tools and resources necessary to help them succeed,” said Michelle Duke, NAB Leadership Foundation president.

The five-part curriculum covers managerial responsibilities through guided role-play, applicable practice exercises and self-audits.

[Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post NABLF Launches Training for First-Time Managers appeared first on Radio World.

Inside WTOP: A Special Radio World Facility Tour Webinar

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 15:08

WTOP and its sister stations Federal News Network and The Gamut recently moved to its new, spectacular studio plant on the D.C./Maryland border. Knowledgeable radio industry visitors are walking away marveling about it.

Now Radio World readers can visit too thanks to this special one-hour, multimedia webinar tour hosted by Radio World Editor in Chief Paul McLane.

We take our video cameras inside — to the Glass Enclosed Nerve Center, the WTOP editor’s desk, the specialized production and support studios, and the technical operations center of this big AoIP-based specialty media facility.

We learn from WTOP Technical Operations Manager Brian Oliger about the design philosophy behind the project, and from RadioDNA President Rob Goldberg about the installation and integration challenges.

WTOP is a special success story. It was again the nation’s top-billing radio station in 2018, according to BIA Advisory Services; it was the only station in the top 10 that is not located in New York, L.A. and Chicago, and the only one not owned by iHeart or Cumulus; and it is consistently the No. 1 station in Nielsen’s 12+ ratings in Washington, a market of almost 5 million people.

Originally airing Aug. 28, this 1.5-hour webinar is now available on-demand. See it here.

The post Inside WTOP: A Special Radio World Facility Tour Webinar appeared first on Radio World.

Arizona LP Licensee Agrees to $1,500 Consent Decree

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 14:38

An Arizona licensee has agreed to a $1,500 consent decree with the Federal Communications Commission after a series of underwriting, procedural and construction transgressions.

San Tan Educational Media, licensee of low-power FM station KFXY(LP) in Mesa, Ariz., admitted to violating several sections of FCC Rules and the Communications Act including failing to file an application for commission consent to change its entire governing board; constructing and operating a tower and antenna that were at a lower height than approved by the commission; and false certification of certain permits — though the commission found the last charge was a result of carelessness by former employees rather than an outright intention to deceive the commission.

[Read: FCC Moves to Revoke Licenses of Broadcasters Who Missed Regulatory Payments]

As a result, the Media Bureau and Enforcement Bureau entered into a consent decree with San Tan to resolve those matters. Part of that consent decree also resolved issues as part of a secondary investigation into whether San Tan violated commission underwriting laws by broadcasting announcements that promoted the products, services or businesses of its financial contributors.

When it came to that underwriting investigation, the FCC stressed that although LPFM radio broadcasters, due to their noncommercial and nonprofit nature, benefit from being exempt from regulatory fees and from having fewer requirements than those imposed on commercial entities, that flexibility is not unlimited. That means that restrictions prohibiting the airing of commercial advertising applicable to noncommercial educational FM broadcast licensees is in effect to protect the public’s use and enjoyment of commercial-free broadcasts.

Although the FCC has said that an LPFM licensee may broadcast underwriting announcements identifying entities that donate to the station, such announcements cannot promote an entity’s businesses, products or services. And even though there are no hard and fast rules on underwriting announcements, the commission said that the longer the announcement, the more likely it is to contain material that is inconsistent with the identification-only rules. In the case of KFXY(LP), the commission investigated a complaint that alleged that the station broadcast a series of announcements that violated those underwriting laws.

As part of its consent decree, San Tan admitted that those broadcasts violated the commission’s underwriting laws. In addition to the $1,500 civil penalty, San Tan will implement a five-year compliance plan to avoid future violations of the underwriting laws.

The commission also concluded that none of the violations affects San Tan’s basic qualifications to be a commission licensee.

[Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

 

The post Arizona LP Licensee Agrees to $1,500 Consent Decree appeared first on Radio World.

Smart Speakers Grow in Importance

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 12:03

People are talking to Alexa; but the smart speaker isn’t the only one listening. Radio industry leaders are paying attention — designing digital plans to make listening to their own streams on voice assistant platforms as easy as possible.

Smart speakers in the home have expanded the audio landscape quickly. Radio broadcasters have been watching this trend from its outset, as we have reported, and they continue to seek ways to take advantage of the voice-driven technology.

How Americans consume audio is always evolving, experts say; but smart speakers continue to be on the leading edge of change right now.  A recent blog post by Westwood One was headlined “Smart Speaker Popularity Continues Full Speed Ahead.” Jacobs Media’s Techsurvey 2019, which polls radio listeners, found that about one in four of their homes have a speaker. More broadly, the Consumer Technology Association puts the number at 31%. Some estimates are even higher.

Interestingly, uptake appears to increase significantly in major markets like New York and Philadelphia, where nearly 50% of homes have one, according to recent data from Nielsen. It tracks the number of smart speakers found in PPM panel homes.

Jacobs Media’s Techsurvey indicates that the most common use of a home smart speaker (at least by the radio listeners Jacobs focuses on) is asking a general question, but a quarter listen to music from an AM/FM radio station. Fifteen percent listen to news or talk from an AM/FM station.

IMMEDIATE OPPORTUNITIES

Analysts interviewed for this story expect the home speaker movement, led by Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Home, to continue to expand into more homes. Changing economics created by technology advances appear to have created a sense of urgency among major radio group owners to bulk up efforts to reach audience via home smart speakers.

The Jacobs survey found that 9% of respondents say they listen to a lot more radio since owning a smart speaker. The respondents were fairly evenly split among those who listen for music and others who listen to news/talk radio stations.

That same survey found that just over half of listeners say all or most of their AM/FM radio listening is done in the car, which leaves broadcasters scrambling to fill the home listening market, experts say.

Bob Kernen, chief operating officer for jacAPPS, the mobile app developer division of Jacobs Media, said savvy radio broadcasters are focused on smart speakers as a new way of getting radio into — or back into — the home.

“Broadcasters are focusing more on their digital streams, but the opportunities go way beyond that,” Kernen said.

“Podcasts are another immediate opportunity.”

Capitalizing on Amazon skills to make sure internet streams can be found easily on voice-driven technology platforms is important, Kernen said.

“It’s all about getting the invocation name right. And that’s getting tougher and tougher as more and more skills get produced, because you can only get one. Then stations need to promote that on the air,” Kernen said.

Radio broadcasters typically guard their streaming numbers closely, so it’s difficult to estimate the overall growth from home speaker listening, several observers told Radio World.

Major broadcast groups like National Public Radio and iHeartRadio are making significant efforts to penetrate the home speaker space, but many other ownership groups are diving in too.

“LONG INTO THE FUTURE”

A graphic from the “Westwood One 2019 Audioscape” report indicates that marketers and agencies are “immersing themselves” in voice-activated advertising. The increase in use since early 2018, the report stated, “is stunning.” Data was gathered by Advertiser Perceptions.

Larry Linietsky, senior VP of operations and business development for Cumulus Digital, said the radio broadcaster has put a lot of emphasis on the smart speaker segment.

“We have Alexa skills for 367 of our 428 stations, and we have Google actions for 17 of our largest podcasts,” Linietsky said.

Cumulus’ digital department works on streaming, podcasting, web and station application solutions. It has developed Alexa and Google home skills that help extend radio messages into digital consumer touch points, Linietsky said.

“Via our partnerships with iHeartRadio and Tunein, we have access points on all smart speakers through numerous methods. We think smart speakers bringing shared listening behavior back into the home, which is something radio has always been good at.

“Cumulus looks at the percentage of listening per month that is coming through smart speakers and it is about 20% of total online listening hours in 2019. That’s from nearly zero percent in 2017,” Linietsky said.

The broadcaster’s digital platforms for streaming include websites/desktop, mobile apps, connected TVs and smart speakers. The majority of the company’s streaming occurs on mobile and desktop, according to Linietsky.

Meanwhile, Beasley Media Group is extending its brand to be “highly relevant across as many platforms as possible,” including smart speakers, said Justin Chase, EVP of programming for Beasley.

“As good as our Alexa skills are now, we are in the process of improving them and rolling out skills on the Google platform. Beasley sees the incredible growth of smart speakers and we will continue to be committed to the strategy long into the future,” Chase said.

Beasley was the first major broadcast company to roll out custom Alexa skills, Chase said, and the company is seeing at least 20% of its streaming audience on smart speakers.

GOING DEEPER

The move from tabletop home radios to smart speakers will likely benefit AM radio stations with poor signals facing increased signal interference, according to James Cridland, a radio “futurist” watching the space closely.

“The research shows that people use more audio after they purchase a smart speaker, and they are in a shared space like the home, which is beneficial,” Cridland said.

So far aggregators that provide live streaming and on-demand audio services are doing a pretty good job at the basics, Cridland said, especially those owned by the radio business, like Radioplayer in Canada, the U.K. and parts of Europe; RadioApp in Australia; and iHeartRadio in Canada and the United States.

“However, TuneIn appears not to care about radio, frequently carries outdated and wrong information about stations, and is a poor experience, especially with smart speakers,” Cridland said. “It›s a disappointment that the radio industry continues to be so reliant on a partner that is so disinterested in them.”

Podcasts and on-demand content on smart speakers are not especially popular, Cridland said, and are likely better suited for headphone listening.

“Some broadcasters are adding additional streams to smart speakers; others are even dabbling with contesting, on-demand sports reports and audio event calendars. But a smart speaker seems ideally positioned to carry the live radio station output,” he said.

Radio broadcasters will follow when listening patterns shift, said Mike Bergman, senior director technology and standards at the Consumer Technology Association.

“If these personal digital assistants become a dominant mode of entertainment in the home, radio is certainly smart to find penetration opportunities,” Bergman said. “If a broadcaster is not tapping into connected speakers they are probably missing out.”

NAB says it touting the benefits of voice assistants in the home, believing smart speakers now allow local radio broadcasters to reach millions of listeners.

“Music listening and tuning into news programming are two of the top uses for smart speakers. As smart speaker ownership continues its growth, local radio will benefit greatly from this new opportunity to engage with our audience,” said Zamir Ahmed, VP of media relations for NAB.

Other tech leaders say radio is making significant gains in stream counts and time spent listening by promoting specific skills to find local stations on smart speakers.

“We have seen data that show radio groups that promote their skills on air are measuring more than 50% of digital listening on smart speakers,” said Pat Higbie, CEO and co-founder of app developer XAPPmedia.

The company works with NPR and Cumulus on delivering voice interactive campaigns for advertisers like Chex, Mattress FIRM, Case Knives, ADT, Walmart, Lagunitas, Target and others. XAPPmedia is pushing radio clients to maintain a high level of on-air promotion of skills.

“The potholes are there for stations that stop the on-air promotion of skills, because Alexa and Google Assistant are becoming more prevalent in the car, so radio owners must keep their stations top of mind in order to stave off competition in the car,” Higbie said.

“In addition, having your radio station only accessible behind an aggregator skill reduces discovery and your ability to hone the listener experience.”

Voice interactive advertising is changing radio monetization on smart speakers, Higbie said. Voice interactive ads include a call to action for listeners to connect with the advertiser via Alexa skills and Google Assistant actions, he said.

RADIO GETS ITS SHARE
The following are highlights from the “Westwood One 2019 Audioscape” report, which uses data from Edison Research and Advertiser Perceptions.

“AM/FM radio and Amazon Music lead in share of smart speaker time spent listening” — The report found that in the second quarter of this year, AM/FM radio (18%) and Amazon Music (17%) led in share of listening on a smart speaker, according to Edison Research. “This is a result of AM/FM radio stations developing voice-activated applications to enable listening on smart speakers and their aggressive promotion of Alexa and Google Home listening.”

“Smart speaker ownership growth isn’t slowing down” — It said the number of Americans who reported owning a smart speaker increased threefold from the second quarter of 2017 to the same period two years later. Estimates on ownership vary, but Edison Research put it at 30% of Americans owning a smart speaker now.

“Marketers and agencies are immersing themselves in voice-activated advertising” — This is shown in the graphic in the main story and is based on research by Advertiser Perceptions. It also found that among media agencies and brands that haven’t started using smart speaker applications, “their likelihood to use these marketing initiatives within the next six months has increased.”

“Millennial podcast growth is powered by ethnic and female audiences” — The Westwood One report also explored trends in podcasting and found that in Q2 of this year, millennial 18–34 podcast daily reach grew 13% over the prior year, to 17.3%. “Driving this growth is 18-34 African Americans, Hispanics and women. These segments are growing faster than the overall 18–34 demo.”

The post Smart Speakers Grow in Importance appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Sneak Peek: ENCO Unveils Cloud-Based Radio Automation Disaster Recovery

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 12:00

ENCO says its DAD Disaster Recovery (DAD-DR) is a cloud-based companion to the company’s DAD radio automation system that is ready to take over program and ad playout on a moment’s notice in case of a natural disaster or critical technical failure.

Providing a fully featured clone of the broadcaster’s on-premises DAD deployment, the company explains that DAD-DR stays in continual synchronization with changes made on the local DAD system to ensure that backup content is up to date and all scheduled ad spots will run.

DAD-DR works with ENCO’s browser-based mobile control interface, WebDAD, allowing users to remotely update playlists, add new content, voice track shows, and perform library maintenance. It’s possible to automate or control the transition from the station’s main DAD system to the cloud backup from a web browser. This ensures that customers are able to switch over to DAD-DR even if they can’t get to the studio in person.

In addition, DAD-DR makes routine systems maintenance less disruptive, as stations performing on-premises upgrades can switch over to their cloud-based backup during the process to eliminate any risk of on-air impact.

IBC Stand: 8.A59

Info: www.enco.com

[Want more information like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Sneak Peek: ENCO Unveils Cloud-Based Radio Automation Disaster Recovery appeared first on Radio World.

Inside the September Issue of Radio World International

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 09:16

As part of a plan to transform its business, Spectrum Radio Network has completed a move to new studios in the center of London. The facility offers a hub for stations broadcasting to the United Kingdom and the world with new targets including podcasters and agencies. Read about the station’s strategy and more in the September issue Radio World International.

IBC2019

Industry Professionals Head to Amsterdam for IBC2019

Radio is well-represented at September’s giant media and technology show

TECHNOLOGY

Ten Codec Questions to Consider

Important points to take into account when implementing codec technology

ALSO IN THIS ISSUE

WorldDAB Announces Excellence in Automotive Award

Summer of Products

Buyer’s Guide: Audio Transport

The post Inside the September Issue of Radio World International appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Sneak Peek: 2wcom Introduces 4audio MPX Range

Radio World - Mon, 09/09/2019 - 02:00

2wcom says its FM/RDS and analog/digital MPX over IP product line is undergoing a “monumental change.” The German firm is replacing its C02 RDS encoder, S02 stereo generator and the analog/digital MPX over IP codecs FMC01 with the new 4audio MPX product series.

According to the company, the new software-oriented and Linux-based scalable 4audio MPX range lets operators configure the system according to specific requirements. The compact solution is housed in a 19-inch’ 1HU rack unit.

The new line let’s users, for example, combine the RDS encoder, stereo generator and an analog/digital MPX over IP codec into one device that is able to generate the MPX signal and encode or decode it 100% lossless for further distribution.

The solution also gives operators the option to select the modules depending on their needs. At transmitter sites users can easily add local RDS data to the MPX signal already assembled at broadcaster’s main studio.

An optionally available SAT receiver enables technical staff to receive the MPX signal via satellite if it’s more economical compared to operating IP or both sources in parallel for redundancy switching to the best signal available. In addition the 4audio MPX-d decoder can be equipped with a FM tuner module to monitor audio and RDS signals or to rebroadcast the received programs.

4audio MPX provides a variety of new software-activated features. The device is equipped with inputs for analog/digital MPX, analog audio, AES/EBU and AoIP. As a result, the stereo generator now also supports all common standards and protocols for AoIP streaming, control and status.

IBC Stand: 8.E78
Info: www.2wcom.com

[Want more information like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Sneak Peek: 2wcom Introduces 4audio MPX Range appeared first on Radio World.

DRM Plans Workshop on Digital Radio Implementation

Radio World - Sun, 09/08/2019 - 18:00

Asian-based broadcasters who are considering a transition to digital radio will have the opportunity to receive an intensive course focusing on the subject at a workshop organized by the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union and the Digital Radio Mondiale Consortium.

The DRM Digital Radio Implementation and Rollout workshop will take place from Oct. 9–10 in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia.

The workshop is designed to give attendees an understanding of DRM digital radio services, its technology and features, planning methods, step-by-step implementation examples and the sharing of solutions and strategies for those looking to move from analog to digital radio.

Across the two days of the workshop, experts will share their knowledge and up-to-date information on the state of digital terrestrial radio broadcasting and some of the issues and challenges it faces.

[Read: U.S.-Based Shortwave Broadcasters Eye Digital]

ABU members can attend the workshop with no registration or participation fees; non-members must pay a fee of US$100. Special accommodation rates are available, though the number of rooms are limited.

The workshop will take place at the Holiday Inn Express Kuala Lampur City Centre.

For more information, or to register, visit www.abu.org.my/DRM.

The post DRM Plans Workshop on Digital Radio Implementation appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Sneak Peek: Elber Showcases Latest Gear

Radio World - Sun, 09/08/2019 - 12:00

At IBC2019 Elber will showcase the Wayber II analog FM/digital (QPSK, 16-64QAM) microwave link, together with the state-of-the-art SIGNUM IRD.

Able to transport L+R, AES-EBU, MPX and SCA signals, the company says the Wayber II offers quality performance both in signal processing and microwave applications.

The front panel is fitted with a 3.5-inch TFT touchscreen, an Ethernet management port, a USB connector for customer authenti­cation and firmware upgrades, as well as LEDs for immediate information about equipment sta­tus.

The back panel hosts all I/O connectors for both baseband and RF signals. If inputs are left- and right-channel, the transmitter can also act as a stereo encoder, generating the MPX signal adding SCA sub­carriers or (optionally) creating RDS data through the UECP protocol over a RS-232 interface.

Elber’s Signum it is a compact and reliable IRD [Integrated Receiver Decoder] designed for the high-end Radio distribution market.

According to the company, the system demodulates one or two DVB-S/ S2 signals up to 32APSK (single/multi-stream), achieving 256 KS/s as minimum symbol rate. The TS demodulated signals can be aligned and configured in 1+1 switching for redundancy. Redundancy can also be achieved with external ASI and TSoIP inputs.

Signum supports MPEG-1 LI/II audio codec, providing analog and digital outputs. In addition, users can set a data PID to be decoded and passed to the internal RDS encoder, generating the dual MPX FM output.

Elber says the EDI interface means Signum is a suitable solution to feed transmitters in DAB/DAB+ environments. It also supports BISS 0/1/E descrambling.

IBC Stand: 8.D35

Information: www.elber.it

[Want more information like this? Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Sneak Peek: Elber Showcases Latest Gear appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Exhibitor Viewpoint: Chris Crump, Comrex

Radio World - Sun, 09/08/2019 - 02:00

IBC2019 is almost here. Between now and then Radio World will conduct several short Q&As with manufacturers about their plans and offerings, to help you get the most out of the big annual trade show. Chris Crump is sales director for Comrex.

Radio World: How has business been for the company since last year’s IBC Show?

Chris Crump: Overall, business is steady. We had a very strong end to the calendar year but we haven’t seen the normal growth that we are used to seeing in the first half of the year. But we are feeling encouraged by recent activity leading into the fall sports season. 

RW: What are you hearing from your customers about their business outlook this year? In what areas should we expect growth or the most interesting projects?

Crump: I think everyone is very guarded with their purchasing decisions. And it seems to be the same across the board throughout the industry. We are seeing an uptick in podcast-related purchase, and smaller specialty studio builds. There are quite a few streaming and content delivery projects that are keeping us busy.

RW: Within the last year or so the two large station ownership groups have emerged from bankruptcy. Are you seeing any increase in equipment sales or interest? What is your feeling for the overall health of the radio industry?

Crump: Equipment sales are increasing as the result of ISDN services being discontinued or priced beyond reasonable. Based on the market trends we’ve observed, the radio portion of our business remains steady, but purchasing is guarded. It seems like a reaction to a predicted recession that may or may not happen. But radio, to us, seems healthy. Stations are billing and providing a great marketing partnership for their advertisers and using our gear to provide added value and NTR from remote broadcasts.

RW: You’ve been active in the equipment manufacturing market for years. What’s the biggest  problem or challenge facing manufacturers right now? Does the trade row between the United States and China greatly affect you?

Crump: Since we don’t manufacture or directly source from China, you would think that we would not be affected by the recent tariffs. But our component vendors have already applied tariff “fees” since they often source components that are subject to the trade war. While it does affect us, I can’t say it is affecting Comrex greatly. For the time being we can absorb some of these costs, but future tariff increases might have an effect on our product pricing. I really hope for all of our sakes that this is resolved soon.

RW: What new goodies will your company be showing? Why should attendees visit your stand?

Crump: We will be introducing our new Access NX Rack and Access MultiRack products to the European market. Both are AES67 compatible. NX Rack is a single full-duplex IP audio codec compatible with our family of Access and BRIC-Link codecs. Access MultiRack is five instances of Access in a 1RU 19-inch rack unit with AES67 I/O. We’ll have some of our other products on hand at 8.P45 in Pod section between Halls 7 and 8.

RW: Going by the interest on our website, AoIP technology is on the top of the list for product acquisition and upgrades. Is that something you are seeing and if so, how are you addressing that?

Crump: Well, our new Access NX Rack and MultiRack address that nicely by interfacing with AoIP routing and control systems that support the AES67 standard. Response from customers that have already installed our new units has been very enthusiastic, so we feel as though our timing for these new products is spot on.

RW: What do you anticipate will be the most significant technology trend at the 2019 IBC Show?

Crump: Virtualization and cloud-based services. It seems that the industry is being pushed (or pulled) in that direction.

RW: Will you be attending any sessions or looking forward to any events?

Crump: Once I’m on the stand, I’m on the stand. While I’d love to see some sessions, I’m at IBC to see Comrex dealers and customers. That’s my main priority.

RW: You’re a show veteran, how has the show changed since your first visit?

Crump: I’ve gotten really good at picking restaurants in Amsterdam. So, my show experience has gotten significantly better over the years as a result.

[Subscribe to our newsletter and get it delivered right to your inbox.]

The post IBC Exhibitor Viewpoint: Chris Crump, Comrex appeared first on Radio World.

IBC Sneak Peek: Wheatstone SwitchBlade Interface

Radio World - Sat, 09/07/2019 - 02:00

The multifaceted SwitchBlade IP device “includes audio codecs, SIP messaging and ACI [WheatNet-IP Application Control Interface] control interface. It is the first product of its kind to combine the power of AoIP logic control with SIP connectivity and codec bandwidth optimization to transport both high-quality programming and the control logic critical for full studio operation between sites,” according to Wheatstone.

The ACI allows for sending commands such as turning microphones on or adjusting EQ.

SwitchBlade has two Ethernet connections, one for connecting to a SIP service provider or SIP-enabled PBX phone system and the other for connecting directly into the WheatNet-IP audio network. SwitchBlade also has codecs, such as including 256 kbps stereo Opus and G.711.

Wheatstone says that uses for the SwitchBlade include: Consolidating program operations for several stations scattered across a region; live remote production, including high-quality programming and console/mic control between home studio and sports or concert venues; sharing program and operating control between sister studios over an IP link; one-to-many STL codecs between one studio and several transmitter sites; a SwitchBlade at the studio feeds two, four, six or more existing SIP-compliant codec units at each transmitter site; and transferring high-quality music between two facilities or from a cloud-based automation system over the common internet.

Wheatstone Sales Director Jay Tyler explained, “SwitchBlade is the missing link for connecting WheatNet-IP facility to WheatNet-IP facility from city to city or across the world. Not only will it carry the audio, it carries the control, which means you can send and receive router commands, automation control, and even fader levels across the two locations.” He added, “Switchblade finally makes it possible to monitor each point of the audio chain and switch audio locally from network operation centers around the world.”

IBC Stand: 8.C91

Info: www.wheatstone.com

The post IBC Sneak Peek: Wheatstone SwitchBlade Interface appeared first on Radio World.

Pages