Date posted: March 26, 2015

New multi-user software simplifies conversion of live, linear radio streams into side channels, including Podcasts and rebroadcasts

Content delivery network and streaming media provider StreamGuys introduces a new software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform to accelerate the turnaround of online side channels for radio broadcasters, including Podcasts, linear streams, and dynamic on-demand content. Broadcasters and content producers can quickly create and publish any number of side channels from existing broadcast streams, including linear radio channels, of any length. In addition to the limitless custom stream possibilities, users are freed from the expensive hardware and intricate technology workflows previously required to achieve the same tasks.

While the concept of creating Podcasts and on-demand content for download is not new, SGrecast is innovative because of how it simplifies and enhances the process. Leveraging StreamGuys’ years of Podcasting expertise, including several Top 10 Podcasts as rated by iTunes, SGrecast integrates all the tools and features necessary for multi-user, multi-publisher podcasting into a web-based SaaS platform that can be activated anywhere.

Since SGrecast is multi-seat software, many users can work simultaneously, making SGrecast ideal for single stations up to the largest broadcast networks. Customers are given a login and password to access SGrecast from any networked location, and can immediately record and schedule content to expedite the creation and playout of side channels. Larger networks have no limit to the number of simultaneous users, and networks can establish users and content in groups to simplify overall management.

“Broadcasters and content producers have long been hampered by the costs, complexity and channel limitations of the hardware-centric architecture for side channel creation,” said Kiriki Delany, president, StreamGuys. “SGrecast eliminates the need for networks to invest in a stack of hardware and software tools at every production studio for local creation and playout. SGrecast lives on our robust and reliable content delivery network, empowering users with an intuitive, easy-to-use and always-available program to effortlessly manage streams, and quickly generate new content.”

While SGrecast is perfect for Podcasts on-demand side channels, its flexibility supports creation and delivery of new linear streams as well. SGrecast’s compatibility with Icecast servers allows broadcasters to efficiently syndicate linear streams and reach larger audiences. Audience reach is also amplified through automatic content transcoding ensures support for multiple formats, which enables reliable playout across all leading desktops, laptops, mobile devices and OTT players. In addition, SGrecast seamlessly integrates with RSS streams, ensuring a clean handoff to popular third-party Podcast and streaming services such as Feedburner, Stitcher and TuneIn.

The inclusion of an automated toolset further empowers users to schedule recording and playout tasks, including in-stream metadata compatibility to trigger recordings, ad insertions and other events; and continuous, automatic content updates to existing side channels. For broadcast networks, precise, targeted scheduling tools enable stations to override national content with local streams—especially useful for stations that do not have the rights to broadcast certain national feeds, such as a regional sports event.

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Date posted: March 12, 2015

Mobile production specialist supplies all live TV, audio and post services for BET and Centric, while bringing “Salute Selma” concert to viewers worldwide

Mobile production specialist TNDV was onsite in Selma, Alabama this past weekend to document a series of special events and concerts surrounding the Bloody Sunday 50th Anniversary, where President Barack Obama joined a crowd of thousands to commemorate the confrontation between police and peaceful protesters that spurred the 1965 Voting Rights Act.

TNDV’s Vibration audio truck was one of three TNDV production trucks onsite. Vibration provided the multitrack recording workflow for the Salute Selma concert on Sunday, March 8.

In addition to a lineup of influential speakers, the weekend included the Selma 50th Anniversary Concerts, which brought together local musicians and popular national artists for three concert events across Saturday and Sunday. TNDV provided audio, video and uplink facilities for the main “Salute Selma,” concert event on Sunday, featuring Rick Ross, Keith Sweat and other well-known musical acts. TNDV worked with cable networks BET and Centric to bring the concert to viewers worldwide via a live stream. A broadcast special will air this Sunday, March 15 on Centric.

In addition to the Salute Selma production, the TNDV team captured various events over the weekend to incorporate into the live webcast and Centric broadcast. This includes the commemorative march across the Edmund Pettis Bridge, in recognition of the 600 civil rights activists that crossed the bridge on March 7, 1965 during a 54-mile trek to the state capital.  Exclusive HD drone footage of the march, captured by TNDV President and Owner Nic Dugger from an aerial perspective above the bridge, can be viewed at https://vimeo.com/121626969.

The TNDV crew on the Edmund Pettis Bridge

Through the weekend, TNDV served as BET’s on-site TV facility, handling everything from live switching the high-end audio mixing and post. To accommodate the enormous size and scale of the production, TNDV brought three of its trucks—Elevation, Aspiration and its Vibration audio truck—to Selma, building a common networked architecture to share video and audio signal routing, monitoring and a multichannel intercom matrix across the entire production workflow.

“In a remote area like Selma, there are literally no technical facilities and few resources to assist in the production of a live TV show,” said Dugger. “This put the responsibilities on TNDV to accommodate the entire workflow from multi-camera acquisition to transmission, designating one truck each for video, audio and uplink services. Selma was deservedly under a unique spotlight this weekend in light of the Bloody Sunday anniversary, and the additional recent exposure through the movie and the Oscars. With an event of such historical value, the honor of being selected and trusted to execute this technical plan cannot be understated.”

The mobile production workflow across the three TNDV trucks included six Hitachi HD cameras, a Deko 3000 graphics station and Renewed Vision’s Pro Presenter system for media playout.  The audio workflow included 128 inputs from the stage to a Studer stage boxes, which were routed to a Studer Vista 9 console onboard the Vibration audio truck. Multitrack audio was managed on board Vibration as well, using a ProTools system with JoeCo recorders on backup.

“The TNDV crew did an excellent job on a very challenging production throughout the weekend in Selma,” said Monte Johnson, CEO of Showtek Productions, the company responsible for managing all broadcast and production elements over the weekend. “TNDV brings together a team of professionals that are truly passionate about their craft. They were a part of history this past weekend, and work of this level makes them not only a rare special breed in this industry, but deserves to make them famous.”

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Date posted: March 4, 2015

Cablecast servers and automation system helps PEG channel cost-efficiently broadcast and stream more than 250 annual government and public affairs meetings

As the public, education and government access (PEG) provider serving the North Dakota cities of Bismarck and Mandan, Dakota Media Access began broadcasting its government access and community media channels in HDTV on February 24, 2015. The transition to HD, which also included new multiplatform delivery for online streaming, was supported through an upgrade to its Tightrope Media Systems Cablecast infrastructure.

The upgrade swapped the existing Tightrope Cablecast SD gear for a fully integrated Cablecast HD infrastructure including broadcast playout servers, Cablecast VOD for video on demand content and Cablecast Live for streaming its content to the web. The Cablecast upgrade additionally includes HD/SD up and down conversion, ensuring that existing SD content can still be incorporated into the program schedule.

The Dakota Media Access team upgraded its Cablecast server and automation platform from Tightrope to enable live and on-demand streaming of its Community TV channels – as well as an HDTV upgrade for traditional broadcasts.

Overall, the upgrade is built on a multiplatform delivery strategy with higher quality content and flexible viewing options to drive audience numbers.

“This HD upgrade is more than a beauty makeover,” said Mary Van Sickle, executive director, Dakota Media Access. “It conveys that our programming is valuable, timely and relevant. In this competitive media marketplace, going HD and offering live and on-demand web content is essential to attracting and retaining viewers. We chose to stay with Tightrope because they offer great technology at an affordable price backed by excellent customer service. Over the years, Tightrope has demonstrated a true understanding of the unique needs of community media and a long-standing dedication to the PEG market.”

The government access channel—which is carried in HD on Channel 602 (and channel 2 for SD) on the Midcontinent Communications cable system—presents 250 live municipal and public affairs meetings that take place in Bismarck and Mandan, and Burleigh and Morton counties, annually. The community access channel programs—produced by Bismarck and Mandan citizens using Dakota Media’s studios—are broadcast in HD on Channel 612 (SD channel 12). The Tightrope Cablecast upgrade includes a dedicated server to automate the delivery of promos, messaging, weather and announcements.

Dakota Media Access has additionally made further upgrades across its acquisition and production systems to attract more community members to its facility. Like many PEG channels nationwide, the facility provides community access to its HD production studios, along with systems training.

“The reality is that the high cost of upgrading to HD is cost-prohibitive for many community media operations nationwide, but we were determined to make it work for the benefit of our local community,” Van Sickle said. “Our successful HD migration—which puts us at the vanguard of PEG operations—is owing to upgrading our infrastructure to an affordable, reliable and user-friendly Cablecast HD workflow from Tightrope Media Systems.”

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Date posted: March 2, 2015

Robust and reliable CDN architecture with transcoding, distribution and playout services support live, on-demand content in multiple formats

Hendrik Information Systems, a Houston-based multi-platform technology systems provider, is taking distance learning and concurrent video streaming of educational content to the next level for some of the country’s largest medical institutions. Hendrik is relying exclusively on StreamGuys’ infinitely scalable, cloud-based content delivery network (CDN) and on-premise servers to facilitate automated transcoding services, as well as live and on-demand broadcast capability for all of their clients’ global events. Additionally, intelligent business software provides in-depth analytics to help Hendrik better understand its audience across every streaming event.

Hendrik partners with major academic medical centers and schools throughout the U.S. to successfully implement online content strategies that maximize knowledge, awareness and brand recognition. Working with StreamGuys gives Hendrik a robust and reliable content delivery infrastructure and comprehensive streaming expertise, without the liabilities and capital investment required to support online content delivery on their own. Hendrik’s client base includes Cedars-Sinai Hospital, Miami Children’s Hospital and Houston Methodist.

“When we began, StreamGuys was clearly the only CDN service provider that could build their offering around our business model,” said Mark Sangster, president and CEO of Hendrik. “Other CDNs tried to have us change our model to suit their service offerings. StreamGuys’ customer service stood apart, and has since become an integral part of our technology platform and support services for our medical clients.”

For a typical event, a keynote speaker is recorded and then delivered over the Internet to viewers around the world, using a wide variety of display devices. Typical webcasts include a dual feed with two unique players—one focused on the presenter and the other streaming a slideshow of content that supports the speaker. StreamGuys’ transcoding technology processes content once for delivery to online, mobile and OTT devices, while supporting multiple streaming formats. Hendrik, which currently uses its own in-house designed players, anticipates upgrading to StreamGuys’ HTML5-based SGplayer moving forward.

The StreamGuys SGmon service, offered in weekly, monthly and yearly subscription packages, provides real-time analytics to monitor peak usage time, helping Hendrik and others like them to make informed decisions in regards to scaling streams and associated concurrent user limits. In addition, the company’s SGreports software offers a deeper dive into audience comprehension, with detailed metrics on content usage tied to hits, visitors, streaming platforms and play duration. This is useful to Hendrik’s clients to help them judge the success of an event and plan future topics of interest.

Hendrik’s healthcare clients webcast a wide range of events, from seminars to “Grand Rounds” to full conferences. Sangster said that due to the busy schedules of healthcare professionals, many viewers take advantage of the video on-demand option if unable to view the live webcast. However, the company recently produced a very successful all-day event seen by several thousand webcast viewers from 29 US States and 33 International countries.

And all of its clients are slightly different. Miami Children’s Hospital, for example, streams live content every day, occasionally broadcasting two live events. Cedars-Sinai and Houston Methodist stream several events each month, as well as two annual all-day conferences. Hendrik also streams a very large annual medical conference called “Pumps & Pipes,” which is a program developed by Houston Methodist, Exxon and NASA.

StreamGuys’ backup services for redundancy are used extensively, in tandem with a high-availability server where the on-demand content resides for later use. Reliability for each live event is assured through a dedicated backup server that protects against failure. This is critical to the major academic and medical companies Hendrik works with, and also simplifies how both Hendrik and StreamGuys work with each hospital’s IT staff.

“More than their technology is the consulting, guidance, troubleshooting and technical support that StreamGuys provides for every event,” Sangster said. “We would not have the offerings we have today without them. They have created a personalized team for us, with 24/7 availability. Having an event not happen is very costly to Hendrik’s bottom line and industry reputation, so the entire infrastructure is carefully designed to ensure the viewers wouldn’t notice any unanticipated technical issue.”

About StreamGuys, Inc.

In business since 2000, StreamGuys is a provider of audio and video streaming toolsets and services.  The company has a reputation for outstanding customer service, a robust and reliable network, and competitive rates.  More than 600 clients worldwide, across many industries, depend on their mission-critical service.  Projects include serving as the technology backbone for live streaming/podcasting for top broadcasters such as Cox Media Group (CMG), New York Public Radio, WAMU Washington D.C., KQED San Francisco and WXPN Philadelphia; live video events for major auto racing circuits and the British Royal Wedding; audio streaming for government entities such as D.C. Court of Appeals, U.S. Army, and the National Science Foundation; mobile video content for Cisco Systems; and IPTV content for international broadcaster ABS-CBN.

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Date posted: February 18, 2015

Streaming media provider unites worship facilities, parishioners through live, on-demand content

At the NRB International Christian Convention and Exposition this month, StreamGuys will emphasize the power of uniting worship communities through streaming media. As a leading expert in multiformat, broadcast-quality streaming and podcasting, StreamGuys will accentuate how worship facilities can broaden audience reach through live and on-demand content on the web, mobile devices and a quickly-expanding universe of connected media players.

StreamGuys specializes in helping worship communities reach parishioners and the greater community in two distinct ways:

  • Streaming content heard on the local AM/FM dial, whether a 24/7 religious broadcaster or a live simulcast from a worship facility
  • Streaming live and on-demand sermons and special events direct from houses of worship

“We’ve long been dedicated to helping religious broadcasters, like Salem Communications and CRISTA Broadcasting, cost-efficiently grow their online presence, while helping houses of worship deliver sermons to parishioners unable to attend services due to illness or travel,” said Jonathan Speaker, COO, StreamGuys. “As the largest globally recognized event dedicated to faith-based communications, the NRB Convention is the ideal platform for StreamGuys to communicate the power and possibilities of streaming media for the greater worship community.”

StreamGuys’ flexible content delivery network enables religious broadcasters and worship facilities to customize the streaming toolset to ensure the most cost-efficient solution for their budgets, while ensuring premium audio quality to engage audiences. Customers are guaranteed a multiformat delivery platform suitable for many consumer devices, with options for HTML5 and Flash players, dynamic ad insertion and password-protected content. Using StreamGuys’ Reflector service, users can quickly establish a reliable, unidirectional streaming service without the costs and complexity associated with static IP addresses and IT network configuration—an ideal option for broadcasters currently relying on costly satellite links for multisite program distribution.

Furthermore, StreamGuys’ decades-plus of podcasting experience, including many years supporting the most popular podcasts on iTunes, ensures a robust platform for the ingestion and playout of on-demand content in any format—for any number of listeners.

StreamGuys’ quality-of-service (QoS) emphasis brings added value for the religious broadcaster, from remote monitoring tools for the customer to the company’s 24/7 technical service. Both lend well-rounded support to religious broadcasters that lack in-house resources for troubleshooting.

“With software-defined monitoring and alerting services, along with a cloud-based, redundant architecture to minimize buffering and eliminate downtime, customers are assured a consistent, high-quality stream that meets the same professional standard as an over-the-air broadcast,” said Speaker.

NRB attendees interested in learning more about live streaming and podcasting for religious broadcasters can visit Booth 716, where StreamGuys will exhibit as part of the Broadcast Industry Group (BIG), comprised of leading TV, radio and streaming suppliers and service providers. The NRB Convention takes place from February 23-26 at the Gaylord Opryland Resort and Convention Center in Nashville.

About StreamGuys, Inc.

In business since 2000, StreamGuys is a provider of audio and video streaming toolsets and services.  The company has a reputation for outstanding customer service, a robust and reliable network, and competitive rates.  More than 600 clients worldwide, across many industries, depend on their mission-critical service.  Projects include serving as the technology backbone for live streaming/podcasting for top broadcasters such as Cox Media Group (CMG), New York Public Radio, WAMU Washington D.C., KQED San Francisco and WXPN Philadelphia; live video events for major auto racing circuits and the British Royal Wedding; audio streaming for government entities such as D.C. Court of Appeals, U.S. Army, and the National Science Foundation; mobile video content for Cisco Systems; and IPTV content for international broadcaster ABS-CBN.

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Date posted: February 3, 2015

Multiple camera feeds, real-time social media integration and three live streams among the key production initiatives for the live music series

Mobile production specialist TNDV lent its video and audio expertise to the debut of Skyville Live, a new monthly music series streamed exclusively online to audiences worldwide from Skyville Live studios located the heart of Nashville. The series provides music lovers with an unprecedented live music series, bringing together today’s hottest stars in a unique and interactive way in front of an intimate audience—usually around 100 attendees.

TNDV provided full turnkey mobile production services, including multicam production, multitrack audio and streaming support from its Elevation truck

Beyond bringing its Elevation truck to the event, TNDV provided crewing and streaming services for the premiere event, which featured performances from Gladys Knight, Martina McBride and R&B artist Estelle. TNDV’s turnkey services incorporated a significant, interactive social media element to the program, using Renewed Vision’s Pro Presenter 5 software to generate a real-time administered Twitter feed in full-screen and lower-third formats.

“The debut of Skyville Live required a turnkey mobile production service to support several live, broadcast-quality web streams, along with a full crew to capture multiple camera angles for future use in post-production,” said Nic Dugger, owner and president, TNDV. “This shoot required a great deal of creative skill to capture the intimacy of the performances, and utilized our technology, expertise and crewing to achieve the desired production results.”

The eight-camera shoot captured the event from three perspectives for the live webcast, which was supported using TNDV’s signal encoding infrastructure on board Elevation; and multiplatform streaming delivery from Blue Scout Media, a CDN based in Texas. Viewers could switch between the live performances, captured using six Hitachi HD1000 cameras; a robotic camera following the production team working on Elevation; and a separate robotic camera to capture the performances from the backstage vantage point. All HD streams delivered a live multichannel audio mix produced on board Elevation.

TNDV additionally employed its Aja KiPro video recorders and ProTools audio recording system to capture the feeds for post-production. All multi-camera, multi-tracked content was delivered to Skyville Live producers following the event, with the goal of distributing a program to media outlets in the near future.

TNDV’s mobile production experience with programs such as Bluegrass Underground, a live performance series seen on PBS, and CMT Backstage were among the key reasons the Skyville Live team selected TNDV to deliver a full range of services beyond a standard mobile production shoot.

“We needed a full-service company like TNDV to capture the true essence of what Skyville Live is about:  bringing a mix of iconic acts, popular artists and emerging stars performing in an intimate setting to a worldwide audience using digital media platforms,” said Wally Wilson, Executive Producer, Skyville Live. “With music being at the forefront of the Skyville Live online experience, high-quality audio is one of the most important elements we looked for when considering production partners.”

 

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Date posted: November 4, 2014

HD mobile production specialist to produce live real-time, interactive coverage of the CMA Awards Red Carpet and backstage activities

NASHVILLE, November 4, 2014 — At The 48th Annual CMA Awards—airing live on the ABC Television Network tomorrow, November 5, from the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville—mobile production specialist TNDV will take the reins on the production of CMA Backstage Pass.  This live, multi-camera streaming media experience will give viewers the ability to use their tablets and mobile devices to get an exclusive look at what’s taking place behind the scenes before and during the live CMA Awards telecast.

CMA Backstage Pass host Kelly Sutton interviews musician Darius Rucker while TNDV producer Lacey Devlin takes notes.

With 13 HD cameras dedicated to CMA Backstage Pass, viewers will see many angles of activities off-stage, starting with the Red Carpet from 5pm to 7pm Central Time.  From 7pm to 11pm, viewers can switch between cameras backstage, in the main broadcast truck and in the press room where the stars appear after receiving their awards.

“The main goal of CMA Backstage Pass is to give fans an in-depth view into what their favorite celebrities are up to during the show. It also provides an unprecedented look into the behind the scenes workings of a major international awards show,” said Lacey C. Devlin, producer for TNDV and Backstage Pass.  “Watching the live broadcast is just one part of the experience fans are searching for. In the age of social media, fans want to know every detail—every inside joke, every off-camera event and other candid moments that make the stars more interesting and relatable.”

TNDV’s Aspiration HD mobile production truck parked outside of Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, where the team will switch 13 cameras for the live CMA Backstage Pass stream.

This innovative, unique live stream, which will unfold in real-time parallel to the main ABC-TV special, will give viewers additional content about the celebrities—whose fashions they’re wearing, accomplishments and personal moments caught on camera—and let viewers share the experience with others on social media.  Viewers can experience CMA Awards Backstage Pass by downloading the WatchABC app, available on iOS, Android, Windows Phone and more.

CMA (Country Music Association) chose TNDV to handle this special national event based on its growing relationship over the past six years.  “TNDV is by far the best live production company I have worked with,” said Ben Bennett, director of digital strategy at Country Music Association.  “TNDV always brings tons of ideas to the table and, most importantly, always executes flawlessly.  Our show has grown into a major national event due in large part to their tireless efforts and willingness to find a way to make things happen.

TNDV Engineers Jared Bowers, Adam Ellis, and Matt Barker prepare some of the 13 cameras to bring the CMA Backstage Pass show to the world live from Bridgestone Arena.

“The two- to three-hour window right before our TV special is the most critical time when viewers are making decisions about what to watch that night,” Bennett continued.  “The live stream creates a ton of chatter online during those critical hours.  The more fans we can get talking about the red carpet and thusly, the CMA Awards, the more chance we have at getting a bigger audience to tune in.  The same goes for during the show.  The live stream will help drive the social media conversation, and should drive more viewers to the ABC broadcast.”

TNDV will switch between 13 cameras from its 40-foot HD truck, Aspiration, which will park next to the main broadcast production truck producing the CMA Awards.  The CMA Backstage Pass camera inside that main mobile unit will let viewers watch the CMA Awards from the perspective of the main truck producing the live show.  Additionally, TNDV is also producing special, behind the scenes packages to give fans an exclusive look at how the stage was built, the stars’ dressing rooms and how the City of Nashville prepared for the CMA Awards, the biggest night in country music.

“This year’s Backstage Pass will be unlike anything ever done for the CMA Awards,” said Nic Dugger, owner and president of TNDV.  “While TNDV was integrally involved in last year’s second-screen experience, called CMA 360, this year we plan to ‘kick it up a notch’ by adding more cameras, more talent and more unfettered access to the Red Carpet and candid backstage moments.  Our multi-camera webcast, which takes place right alongside the main broadcast, includes a 20-member crew, an expanding side HD truck, and a complex single-mode fiber optic infrastructure dedicated solely to Backstage Pass.”

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Date posted: September 3, 2014

95.5 The Fish transitions to SGplayer, an interactive HTML5 player that reliably streams music and revenue-generating ads to mobile devices

Last November, StreamGuys announced a new HTML5 multimedia player to help broadcasters and streaming services expand online and mobile audiences through its all-inclusive, multiplatform approach to content delivery.  Now, a major commercial broadcaster has upgraded one of its stations to the interactive player to achieve both reliable multiplatform streaming; and revenue generation through video ad insertions.

The broadcaster, Salem Communications of Northeast Ohio, has transitioned the live online stream for WHFM-FM, better known as 95.5 The Fish, to StreamGuys’ multimedia player.  Newly branded as SGplayer, the interactive player supports all popular mobile devices in alignment with the HTML5 markup language – a significant upgrade from the previous CDN’s player, which was only compatible with desktop devices.

Salem Communications of Northeast Ohio’s other primary motivation for the switch was StreamGuys’ dynamic ad insertion capability.  StreamGuys has long supported dynamic ad insertions in the form of audio pre-rolls, mid-rolls and post-rolls, as well as single-client video insertions.  The latest incarnation of SGplayer supports video pre-rolls for multiple advertisers—a key requirement for 95.5 The Fish.  SGplayer’s dynamic interface rotates a series of ads, serving each unique visitor with a sponsor’s message.  The player displays a static companion banner associated with the ad following its conclusion on the right side of the player.  This detail remains visible for the visitor’s duration alongside artist and title information, album art, purchase links, social media icons, and other metadata related to the live music stream.

In addition to supporting multiplatform delivery and video pre-rolls, StreamGuys customized an affordable turnkey streaming package for the live radio signal that, along with the revenue-generating ad opportunities, offers a quick return on investment for the station.

“The transition to StreamGuys quickly solved the problems we faced with buffering issues and signal drops across a variety of mobile devices,” said Mark Jaycox, general manager, Salem Communications of Northeast Ohio.  “A large majority of internet radio streaming is moving to mobile devices.  It was critical to get that under control before we significantly damaged our mobile initiative.

“As important as it was to improve our mobile reach, it was just as important to move our video pre-roll offerings to the next level as we have been very aggressive at selling that inventory,” Jaycox continued.  “StreamGuys pulled its engineering team together to enhance its player, and did some groundbreaking work.  SGplayer delivers more information than our previous player, and provides that extra real estate to sell our advertisers.  You can now see the client’s logo in a couple of spots after the video concludes.  That upped the ‘sellability’ for us, allowing us to generate more revenue than what was possible before.”

Jaycox notes that the live stream attracts nearly 35,000 unique visitors a month, the large majority of which fall into the 25-54 female demo—a highly coveted audience for radio advertisers.  He expects to transition additional Salem Broadcasting Cleveland stations to SGplayer moving forward.

“StreamGuys has been very responsive and proactive in making sure our requirements were exceeded,” said Jaycox.  “The design of the player is appealing to listeners and advertisers alike, and offers exceptional value and reliability at a very affordable price point.”

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Date posted: July 14, 2014

Mobile production specialist captures, magnifies and streams Vanderbilt and University of Virginia commencements in HD

Mobile production is most often associated with the world of sports and large entertainment events, but a growing contingent of non-broadcast organizations are looking to outside production teams to increase quality and expand audience reach.

TNDV recently brought its mobile production expertise to the campuses of Vanderbilt University in Nashville and the University of Virginia in Charlottesville, achieving these goals and more for their spring graduation ceremonies.  TNDV transitioned both commencement productions to HD for the first time, vastly improving image magnification quality for the large attending crowds.  The company also streamed the live ceremonies worldwide to ensure families, friends and alumni could tune in from anywhere.

According to Nic Dugger, owner and president of TNDV, an increasing number of his clients across education, government and corporate verticals are recognizing the quick return on investment that comes with upgrading the production quality and taking the event to an external audience.

“Universities like Vanderbilt and University of Virginia realize that commencement is the most crucial day to a student’s life,” said Dugger.  “Graduation day sets the mood and tone to the student’s relationship with that university forever, and potentially influences future donations and ongoing involvement.  They want every student’s family to be able to experience the event with them, whether onsite or online, with the visual and audio quality required for total immersion.  It takes a professional mobile production crew and technology infrastructure to make that happen, especially when you are serving two very different audiences.”

TNDV built a true mobile production facility for each event, staffed with producers, directors, and a complement of switcher, graphics and playback operators.  The staff positioned multiple Hitachi HD5000 cameras around the venues, feeding back to its Inspiration truck.  On board, the signals were sweetened with graphics and audio, and routed to large LED screens on either side of the stage.  Throughout the productions, TNDV staff monitored multiviewer feeds both on board and outside the truck, the latter of which lent a professional production atmosphere for attendees.

The team also positioned an array of audience microphones throughout the crowd to capture the energy of the event for online audiences.  This replicated the in-person experience for those who couldn’t make the ceremonies.  Additionally, all camera feeds from the ceremonies, as well as special events surrounding the commencements, were recorded to Aja KiPro banks for future university use.

For Dugger, the tricky nature of producing graduation ceremonies is that unlike a live performance, the emphasis is not on a single artist or small group of performers.  Everyone involved is on equal footing, from guest speakers to the entire student body.

“The challenge across both the image magnification and live stream is to make sure that every student gets the recognition they deserve,” he said.  “Every student’s name needs to be seen and heard clearly.  Taking the leap to HD production makes that experience far more immersive, and ultimately more memorable.  And these productions were truly what you would see for a full-blown live broadcast.”

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Date posted: April 14, 2014

Complete suite of services gives radio broadcasters an affordable multiplatform alternative  

StreamGuys and Orban have joined forces to bring an affordable turnkey streaming service to market that addresses the complete internet radio ecosystem.  The service will help broadcasters cover the entire media landscape of where audiences exist today — and effectively monetize streams to accelerate return on investment.

The new StreamGuys/Orban solution allows broadcasters to use the entire turnkey package, or choose the elements they need today with options to scale moving forward.  The overall solution emphasizes reliable content delivery and business growth regardless of how many services a particular broadcast requires — ensuring that independent radio stations and large network operators receive equal attention while establishing and growing an online identity.

“Broadcasters need to provide online and mobile audiences with a high-quality user experience while generating new revenue streams and controlling costs,” said Kiriki Delany, president, StreamGuys.  “StreamGuys and Orban are combining historical strengths to ensure a robust and revenue-generating streaming service customized to each broadcaster’s requirements.”

The complete collection of services address the entire content lifecycle, including front-end processing and multiplatform content delivery to ensure quality of service; as well as business software and playout tools to build audiences and drive revenue opportunities.

  • Process:  Orban’s highly efficient audio processing products prepare broadcast signals for multi-platform delivery, retaining optimal signal integrity while encoding metadata-rich streams into multiple formats – making an exceptional user experience possible across any consumer device.
  • Deliver:  StreamGuys’ cloud-based streaming architecture reliably streams live and on-demand content to the web, mobile and in-car devices, internet radios and OTT media players.
  • Monetize:  Dynamic, server-side ad insertion technologies help broadcasters reliably target audiences without complex integrations, while subscription services from StreamGuys enable broadcasters to generate revenue through special content — with rock-solid conditional access protection.
  • Play:  The latest HTML5 and Flash player options ensure audiences can tune in from anywhere — including tablets and smartphones — while rich mobile apps drive deeper engagement with listeners.

The complete solution also ensures compatibility with industry-leading automation systems to enhance content management and reporting across multiple streams.  Additionally, the solution incorporates a variety of reporting and analytics tools to help broadcasters understand global audiences, research trends and pinpoint potential growth opportunities.

“Collectively, the Orban and StreamGuys turnkey streaming service brings world-class broadcast technology into the streaming media universe, ensuring that broadcasters achieve the same premium quality and business opportunities they do with their over-the-air services,” said C. Jayson Brentlinger, president and CEO, Orban.

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