TTNET Turkey Adds Four Live Sports Channels

TTNET Turkey Adds Four Live Sports Channels Based on PlayBox Technology Channel-in-a-Box Systems

 London, UK, December 12, 2013: TTNET, the largest internet service provider in Turkey, has chosen a broadcast playout system from PlayBox Technology for four high-definition live sports channels at its Esentepe transmission centre in Istanbul.
 

The installation forms a central element of TTNET's expanding role as a television content provider. A division of Türk Telekom, TTNET was established as an internet service provider in 2005. TTNET currently has over 6 million ADSL subscribers and is expanding to meet all the digital communication requirements of its customers. It provides Turkish-language broadcast services under the Tivibu trademark. Tivibu home, web, mobile and smart-TV services are currently available in Turkey.
 

"We are very pleased indeed with this system," comments TTNET CTO Şahin Şen. "PlayBox Technology channel-in-a-box systems are ideal for our mode of operation which is completely tapeless. The server-per-channel structure forms the basis of a fully integrated solution which is easy to operate and highly scalable. SafeBox software running on each HD AirBox provides robust file transfer in daily playlist mode. This combination gives staff in our master control room the freedom to perform near-to-air playlist adjustments. The system's IT-based design makes the new installation an economical investment, easy to expand and easy to maintain. A further advantage of partnering with PlayBox Technology is the availability of 24/7 support direct from the company's local Turkish office here in Istanbul. We can count on their prompt visit to our premises whenever required .”
 

“The project includes four complete high-definition ingest and playout channels with full 1:1 redundancy,” adds Miglena Dzhimova, Country Manager of Istanbul-based PlayBox Technology Turkey which carried out the contract, supervised the installation and provided staff training. " The four new high-definition channels will be simultaneously downconverted for standard-definition viewing. Each channel is equipped with primary and auxiliary HD AirBox servers plus an HD TitleBox interactive graphics manager. These feed HD-SDI signals via channel-specific production switchers to an output encoder. Each production switcher also feeds a master video router."
 

Using the PlayBox Technology AirBox, every clip in a playlist, except the one which is currently playing, can be trimmed, edited or repositioned. Playlist order can be changed on-the-fly with commands such as skip-to-next or jump. Order changes are performed seamlessly without affecting current playout. Live productions are controlled using a Live Show c lipboard which allows insertion and/or execution of various events or live streams.
 

TitleBox creates, displays and controls multi-zone screens with rolls, crawls, animations, clocks, station logos and related graphics which fit perfectly into the workflow. All running objects are mixed and blended to each other in real time, including animations. Each graphic object can be edited while on-air giving staff a chance to work calm ly on set tasks .
 

TTNet
TTNet

The BIG Interview

SI feature in December 2013 RFV

  

PlayBox Technology has nearly 14 years of experience producing complete broadcast systems based on modular software and hardware. 

"We pioneered what is today termed the 'channel-in-a-box' approach which gives broadcasters the resources they need to establish new programme streams quickly, efficiently and in minimal rack space," explains UK Sales Director Ben Gunkel. "All our software and hardware are created in-house for integration into fully cohesive systems which can be operated by anyone familiar with the concepts of standard internet browsing. Channel-in-a-box was initially viewed as cost-efficient alternative to traditional hardware-intensive technology but is now the preferred choice both for new start-up channels and for existing broadcasters seeking to expand their output. We can provide what amounts to a master-control-room-in-a-box under full local control. Alternatively, a PlayBox Technology system can be installed at a remote playout centre and controlled from the customer's headquarters via a secure intranet link

Recent PlayBox Technology installations include The Player Channel (London), EbonyLife TV (Nigeria), STN Slovenia and TVB Hong Kong.

The Player Channel

Europe’s largest dedicated broadcast gaming network, The Player Channel chose the PlayBox Technology EdgeBox automated remote playout solution. "The installation gives us dynamic playlist and graphics control from our operations centre in London," says Crispin Nieboer, founder of The Player Channel. "PlayBox Technology installed the entire system within one week and provided onsite training at our Hammersmith studios. Easy to use, highly responsive and very reliable, it has proved a real winner.”

EbonyLife TV

EbonyLife TV chose a complete broadcast system fromPlayBox Technology for a new high-definition channel transmitting by direct satellite to subscribers in sub-Saharan Africa. The installation includes ingest, storage, content management, channel branding and playout automation using PlayBox Technology’s flagship AirBox and TitleBox servers. "Our production staff like the system’s fast and logical user interface which gives them all the information and control they need to perform each specific task," says EbonyLife TV founder and seasoned broadcaster Mo Abudu. "Our technical management team appreciate the system’s reliability. Knowing that it works and is fully protected by redundant PlayBox Technology servers, we are able to concentrate on our main objective of originating entertaining and informative programmes."

"EbonyLife TV produces a large proportion of its content in house," adds PlayBox Technology Managing Partner and Director, Sales, Don Ash. "For that reason, it needed a solution which could capture and pass live video and audio content as well handle pre-prepared files. The system we have provided is capable of easy expansion if or when the station introduces additional channels. It was installed over a two week period prior to the channel going live at the beginning of July."

STN Slovenia

STN Slovenia chose PlayBox Technology automated playout servers for the satellite teleport at its headquarters in Ljubljana. A total of 15 systems have been installed in an ongoing project, each configured for remote operation by STN's clients.

"We operate a fully file-based global television playout service," comments Tomaz Lovsin, Managing Director of STN. "We have been using PlayBox Technology channel-in-a-boxsystems successfully for over three years. Their modular structure gives us the ability to configure high-definition and standard-definition systems matching the specific requirements requested by our clients, including optional primary and secondary channels. The user interface is straightforward and logical right across the PlayBox Technology system, which makes staff training very easy. Each channel is fully self-contained and structurally compact, just one rack unit, which makes expansion very easy both to accommodate extra channels or to deliver additional features to existing clients."

"Intuitive user interfaces have been a central feature of our broadcast automation systems right back to our first Channel-in-a-Box system in 1999," adds PlayBox Technology Regional Sales Manager Vlademir Stanic. "Each channel includes a CaptureBox, TitleBox and AirBox, giving operators control of their channel from any location. This includes file ingest and scheduling, graphics creation, resolution scaling, frame-rate conversion, aspect-ratio conversion, multiple audio and subtitle streams and content validation. Each system feeds direct to multiviewers and transmission encoders."

TVB Hong Kong

PlayBox Technology also recently completed a major upgrade to the playout facilities at the studios of Hong Kong's largest independent broadcaster, Television Broadcasts Ltd (TVB). The project, which also included customer training, was completed together with the engineering team from Mediatech (International) Ltd, the local PlayBox Technology partner. It was finalised with the installation of 26 servers at the network's headquarters in TVB City, Kowloon. The installation encompassed nine high definition 24/7 channels. Seven of them are already on air and the others are in precommission testing. The servers installed consist of PlayBox Technology AirBox and TitleBox, for playout, with character generation and graphics. Eighteen are configured with 1:1 redundancy level for main and back-up operation on the nine high-definition channels. Control of the nine high-definition channels is via Multi Playout Manager, a fully assignable monitoring and control system. Two redundant Multi Backup Manager servers were added to manage redundancy switching on an existing third-party router.

STN Slovenia
EbonyLife TV
STN Slovenia EbonyLife TV

STN Slovenia Installs its 15th PlayBox Channel-in-a-Box

  

London, UK, September 30, 2013: STN Slovenia has chosen PlayBox Technology automated playout servers for the satellite teleport at its headquarters in Ljubljana. A total of 15 systems have been installed in an ongoing project, each configured for remote operation by STN's clients.


"We operate a fully file-based global television playout service," comments Tomaz Lovsin, Managing Director of STN. "We have been using PlayBox Technology channel-in-a-box systems successfully for over three years. Their modular structure gives us the ability to configure high-definition and standard-definition systems matching the specific requirements requested by our clients, including optional primary and secondary channels. The user interface is straightforward and logical right across the PlayBox Technology system, which makes staff training very easy. Each channel is fully self-contained and structurally compact, just one rack unit, which makes expansion very easy both to accommodate extra channels or to deliver additional features to existing clients."


"Intuitive user interfaces have been a central feature of our broadcast automation systems right back to our first Channel-in-a-Box system in 1999," adds PlayBox Technology Regional Sales Manager Vlademir Stanic. "Each channel includes a CaptureBox, TitleBox and AirBox, giving operators control of their channel from any location. This includes file ingest and scheduling, graphics creation, resolution scaling, frame-rate conversion, aspect-ratio conversion, multiple audio and subtitle streams and content validation. Each system feeds direct to multiviewers and transmission encoders."

PlayBox Technology system in operation at STN Slovenia
PlayBox Technology system in operation at STN Slovenia

PlayBox Soon to Launch SocialMediaBox

Integrating Social Media Content into a Single Channel or Multiple Channels from a Single Display

 London, UK, September 26, 2013: PlayBox Technology announces the imminent release of SocialMediaBox, a powerful addition to its range of broadcast TV and Channel Branding systems. SocialMediaBox enables programme production and presentation creators to incorporate comments from multiple social networking feeds quickly and efficiently into a single ready-for-broadcast stream.
 

"Comments can be selected and moderated from a variety of different social media outlets, integrating sources such as Facebook and Twitter on a single feed for broadcasting," explains Plamen Georgiev, Chief Product Officer. "This is extremely useful for live television shows which produce auxiliary-screen pages for viewer feedback. The custom feed can be output as an RSS feed and used in other systems, or sent to TitleBox or another character generator device for viewing as an integral part of the programme output."
 

SocialMediaBox is controlled using a standard web browser. Operators can view preconfigured feeds from various social media sources or web sites, and add the desired posts to a customised feed list using simple drag-and drop. Comments in the customised feed can then be edited, checked against a profanity word-list, and published immediately (instant-publish mode) or floated until approved for publishing.
 

SocialMediaBox is client/server application using SQL-based data storage and supporting multi-user access as well as multiple outputs. A single application can be used across several television shows and channels. Multiple user accounts may be assigned, each account then being able to create customised feeds. Access to each feed can also be configured as private, accessible by designated users or available to all users.

Example screen display generated by SocialMediaBox from multiple social networking web sites
Example screen display generated by SocialMediaBox from multiple social networking web sites

PlayBox to introduce new features for ScheduleBox

See PlayBox Technology on stand 8.C30 at IBC 2013, RAI Centre, Amsterdam

 London, UK, 4 September 2013: PlayBox Technology will introduce a new version of its ScheduleBox -Advanced Broadcast Scheduler at IBC 2013 in September. ScheduleBox will be demonstrated as part of a total PlayBox Technology broadcast production and playout management system on stand 8.C30 at IBC 2013.
 

ScheduleBox allows template-based management of single, or multiple television channels. It is easy to deploy via its web based user interface. Operators can select daily, weekly or monthly views and perform programme block management per television channel. Gaps or overlaps are easily identified in the programme blocks. Block status such as Draft, New and Ready-for-publishing can be monitored and controlled.
 

ScheduleBox incorporates a range of new features including an in-browser clip trimmer with selectable in/out points, media splitting and clip preview. Also new is a file upload facility which allows content to be delivered to a remote file store, all from a web browser. Content folders can be assigned to each specific television channel.  Simultaneous file upload and full integration with user rights policies are both supported.
 

Enhanced playlist import capabilities include multiple watch folders per channel and automatic metadata assignment. Media files can be transferred from library to schedule with simple drag-and-drop.  A new statistics module offers an at-a-glance view of Scheduled versus Broadcasted.
 

"We have also added a series of detailed operational enhancements which ensure ScheduleBox keep its position as the most efficient and the most versatile broadcast scheduler on the market," comments Don Ash, PlayBox Technology Managing Partner and Director, Sales. "It is this level of attention to detail that has made PlayBox Technology the world's best-selling broadcast management system, now powering over 13,000 channels around the globe."

ScheduleBox Workflow
ScheduleBox Workflow

PlayBox announces NewsRoomBox

PlayBox Technology will introduce at IBC in September its NewsRoomBox newsroom production system

 London, UK, 28 August 2013:  


 PlayBox Technology delivers broadcast systems ranging in scale from a single-channel playout server to a complete multi-channel broadcast centre. NewsRoomBox provides all the facilities required for efficient newsroom management, story creation and studio control. It allows live and pre-recorded content to be united to create news programmes using text, video, audio, photos and incoming data. Video trimming can be performed with single-frame precision.
 

NewsRoomBox can be used to unite and process content from an exceptionally wide range of sources including live Newswire, RSS and Atom feeds. Playout servers, character generators and teleprompters may be controlled directly from the web-browser-based NewsRoomBox 'Rundown' operating screen. Control of AirBox, TitleBox and external routers can be performed either offline or during live transmission. Multiple AirBox playout and TitleBox interactive CG and graphic servers are also supported.
 

Built on the Microsoft Windows Server 2012 operating system, NewsRoomBox incorporates a robust MS-SQL database management system which allows an unlimited number of media, text and metadata and be assigned to each news story within a user-definable folder structure. The media libraries support MAM and NAS File Storage.
 

The processed output from NewsRoomBox can be profiled for output to tickers, teletext, web, social media, blogs, mobile television receivers, Connected TV and OTT. All news sources and output formats may be handled within a single workflow.

 

NewsRoomBox worflow
NewsRoomBox worflow

EbonyLife TV Goes Live with PlayBox

See PlayBox Technology on stand 8.C30 at IBC 2013, RAI Centre, Amsterdam

 London, UK, 5 August 2013: EbonyLife TV has chosen a complete broadcast system from PlayBox Technology for a new channel transmitting in high definition by direct satellite to subscribers in sub-Saharan Africa. The installation includes ingest, storage, content management, channel branding and playout automation using PlayBox Technology’s flagship AirBox and TitleBox servers. EbonyLife TV is based at Studio Tinapa, Nigeria’s ultra-modern ‘Nollywood’ movie production centre at Calabar in Cross River State.
 

“We wanted a no-hassle complete automation workflow from one vendor,” comments EbonyLife TV founder and seasoned broadcaster Mo Abudu. "PlayBox Technology has an excellent reputation in Africa and worldwide both for the robustness of its control and playout systems and for the efficient support it provides during initial planning, installation, training and onsite testing. Our production staff like the system’s fast and logical user interface which gives them all the information and control they need to perform each specific task. Our technical management team recognise and appreciate the system’s reliability. Knowing that it works and is fully protected by redundant PlayBox Technology servers, we are able to concentrate on our main objective of originating entertaining and informative programmes."
 

"EbonyLife TV produces a large proportion of its content in house," adds PlayBox Technology Managing Partner and Director, Sales, Don Ash. "For that reason, it needed a solution which could capture and pass live video and audio content as well handle pre-prepared files. The system we have provided is capable of easy expansion if or when the station introduces additional channels. It was installed over a two week period prior to the channel going live at the beginning of July."
 

"The system was assembled in our test centre and configured to suit the requirements of EbonyLife before being delivered," details PlayBox Technology UK Sales Director Ben Gunkel. "Dual high-definition servers drive the channel output. The media asset management and traffic system power the operation before going to air. A PlayBox Technology MAM server allows operators to access their growing content library. The traffic system provides advanced scheduling with forward planning and reporting for the advertising sales team.”

 

EbonyLifeTV
EbonyLifeTV

PlayBox EdgeBox Remote Playout System Proves a Winner

See PlayBox Technology on stand 8.C30 at IBC 2013, RAI Centre, Amsterdam

 London, UK, 31 July 2013: Europe’s largest dedicated broadcast gaming network, The Player Channel, has chosen EdgeBox, an automated remote playout solution from PlayBox Technology. The new system is installed at the channel’s playout service provider and can be fully controlled from the broadcaster’s operations centre in Hammersmith.
 

“Moving to a new transmission service company gave us the opportunity to invest in a more versatile playout system,” says Crispin Nieboer, founder and Chief Executive Officer of The Player Channel. “After studying the various solutions currently on the market, we identified PlayBox Technology EdgeBox as offering exactly the facilities we needed, and at a sensible price. The new installation gives us dynamic playlist and graphics control from our operations centre in London. PlayBox Technology installed the entire system within one week and provided onsite training at our Hammersmith studios. Easy to use, highly responsive and very reliable, it has proved a real winner.”
 

“The solution provided to The Player Channel includes a CaptureBox in the operations centre to capture from tape, plus a traffic management system with full integration into both the operations centre and the playout site,” adds PlayBox Technology UK Sales Director Ben Gunkel. “The advantage of the EdgeBox workflow is that Player Channel is able to maintain exactly the same standard of operation as with its previous service provider but with more direct control, and at a fraction of the cost. Player Channel can also use the EdgeBox live pass-through feature to switch in and out of live feeds when they overlay custom graphics with the built in TitleBox module.
 

Also installed for The Player Channel at its playout service-provider is an EdgeBox fully automated playout system which forwards a video, audio and data stream by satellite and cable to a potential 30 million viewers across Europe. The EdgeBox is provided with a fully redundant backup server, SNMP monitoring and an auto-sensing smart switch to monitor the audio and video signals coming from the main and backup EdgeBox servers. The Player Channel has subscribed to PlayBox Technology’s 24/7 support and monitoring service which is provided from our UK headquarters.”
 

“This installation fully demonstrates the operational and economic advantages which can be achieved using modern broadcast infrastructure,” comments Don Ash, PlayBox Technology Managing Partner and Director, Sales. “The total system provided to The Player Channel allows file and playlist delivery via a standard internet connection, contributing a huge saving compared with the cost of using traditional dedicated fibre or satellite links.”

EdgeBox Workflow
EdgeBox Workflow

ANTENNA EXPANDS WITH PLAYBOX

  

London 25 June 2013 

The ever increasing popularity of large-screen television displays has generated a corresponding rise in demand for high quality sports coverage. Antenna, one of the main television networks in Cyprus, recently decided to expand the master control room at its Nicosia headquarters to accommodate three sports channels for Cytavision. 


Cytavision is a digital television service introduced in 2004 by the Cyprus Telecommunications Authority (CYTA) which is the country's main telecommunications service provider. Originally called MiVision, Cytavision is based on a broadband IPTV infrastructure where digital sound and vision are carried through a telephone line to a set-top box and from there to the customer’s television display.


Cytavision provides several themed channels, video on demand, games on demand, access to a television portal with local information, the ability to send and receive email, and the use of an electronic programme guide. Each of these services is accessible through easy-to-use control menus, enhanced with parental control access criteria. Viewers can access a catalogue of content using a precise search facility.


Antenna itself commenced transmission in June 1993 and was the first private television station in Cyprus. Television content is delivered via digital terrestrial and cable and via web through its own portal, www.ant1iwo.com (Antenna Internet World). Antenna's output includes entertainment, news coverage (with a main news bulletin at 20:20), talk shows, production of local comedy series and drama. Antenna FM, a radio service with national coverage, began operations in 1998. All broadcasts are currently in standard definition but the new MCR facility is ready to transmit in high definition whenever this is asked for.


Cytavision's sports channels are normally transmitted in Greek. International content such as UEFA Champions League, Europa League, Serie A and Eredivisie carry an English commentary in parallel if available.

"Primary reason for the new MCR was lack of space in the existing facility." explains Michael Dallas, Technical Director of Antenna. "Secondly, we faced a very tight schedule to be on air less than two months from the contract being award. Creating a new MCR would also ensure that Antenna could continue uninterrupted transmission from its existing infrastructure which is still operational.


"Antenna had covered sports for years but as a part of its television output. It had to rethink the way that the new sports-specific channels would be taken to air within a very tight schedule. After careful consideration of various possible technical approaches, the we decided in favour of an IT-based tapeless Channel-in-a-Box system as being the perfect solution. 


"Having used products from PlayBox Technology for various projects over several years, we made contact with the local representative here in Nicosia, Vavel Netmedia. As it was a totally new project, we designed the system to be easy to use and to need minimum human workforce. A crucial requirement was that the system should allow users with basic IT knowledge to become very quickly familiar with every of day-to-day operations."


System structure

The major components of the PlayBox Technology Channel-in-a-Box system offer media ingest with CaptureBox; storage, automation and playout with AirBox; interactive CG and graphics with TitleBox and scheduling with ListBox. ListBox creates schedules for AirBox. Rules can be created for TitleBox to automate the character generator and interactive graphics as the basis of a completely automatic television channel. 


The system installed for the new Cytavision sports channels has a wide range of PlayBox Technology equipment including three servers each comprising AirBox playout and automation, and TitleBox on-air dynamic graphics. 

AirBox provides automated content playout. It is designed to be extremely robust, in order to meet the highest reliability demands of on-air playout. At a fraction of the price of any digital videotape player, a single AirBox server offers the same visual quality at its single or multi-channel SDI outputs, multi-language audio, graphics and subtitle insertion, last-minute playlist changes and clip editing. 


AirBox supports MPEG1/2/H.264, HDV and DV streams from virtually every known production platform providing AVI, MPEG, WMV, Quick Time or MXF content. Files from third-party servers such as Leitch or Seachange are natively supported. 


For live productions, any changes to the playlist during on-air session are possible. There are no qued or locked clips. Every clip in the playlist, except the one which is currently playing, can be trimmed, edited or repositioned. Playlist order can be changed on-the-fly with commands like skip to next or jump. Such order changes are performed seamlessly without stopping current playout session. Live productions are facilitated by a Live Show Clipboard which allows insertion and/or execution of various events or live streams. 


For automated playout AirBox allows fixed-time scheduling for weeks ahead. Resulting gaps or time overlaps are automatically resolved in order to ensure continuous operation even when conflicting timed events are present. Special facilities ensure uninterrupted operation if content files or even entire schedules are missing or misplaced. 

Playout sessions are logged for monitoring and control purposes. The log can be later used for extracting actual playout sequence with exact timings or identifying user intervention into the playout session. The logging and recovery options allow completely unattended remote operation.

Interactive graphics


TitleBox is an interactive graphics manager which creates, displays and controls multi-zone screens with rolls, crawls, animations, clocks, station logos and 3D objects. All running objects are mixed and blended to each other in realtime, including animations. The more CPU power, the more objects can be layered simultaneously. This ensures an unlimited amount of object combinations and unprecedented visual variety. Every CG object can be edited during the on-air session. Manual or automated changes of text contents, animation/rolling speed, position and properties can be done on-the-fly. Roll/crawl speed can follow a predefined speed curve. On-air changes can either be made directly to the on-screen running objects or on a dedicated preview output and then applied to the master output. All graphics are 24-bit true colour (16.7 million colours) with 8-bit Alpha channel (256 transparency levels). Field-based sub-pixel rendering ensures smoot hanimation and rolling text at any speed.


A fourth server is installed as a standby in case any one of the three mains servers fails. This is controlled by a Multi-Backup Manager. Three CaptureBox servers are available for ingesting new video material. QCBox checks the quality of the material ready for transmission and includes loudness monitoring. AlarmBox reports any urgent problems. Other system elements comprise 32 terabytes of network-attached storage (NES) and 8TB of Network-Attached Storage (NAS) as well as a further TitleBox for off-line preparation.


The AirBox playout and automation units, each equipped with a TitleBox, feed a total of ten outputs to a 64 x 64 Harris Platinum MX router. The router in turn feeds a PlayBox Technology CaptureBox HD. The system also incorporates a TrafficBox.


Commercials booking

TrafficBox automates and integrates the booking of commercials into the editorial context and thereby eliminates the most frequent sources of error. All required documentation such as order confirmations, schedules, campaign plans and invoices are generated automatically from TrafficBox. Traffic and billing are integrated with the client’s workflow. TrafficBox supports workgroups and synchronises multiple channels.


It uses a set of standard forms to create orders and offers. Operators simply enter the required information in the forms needed to book commercials, create schedules, invoices and so on. This information is aggregated to allow a single point of management of all the information.


Commercials arrive via an FTP server. Video from tape or data from Sony XDCAM are ingested to the NAS and every item is stored as a distinct file. The system has sufficient capacity to hold a year’s transmissions (football, basketball, interstitials and so on). In the low season, which is summer, a cleaning procedure ensures everything that no longer is needed is transferred to deep archive. 


The new MCR also includes a Predator multiviewer, Junger Audio C8000 modular processing, Yamaha 01V96i audio mixers for the commentary booths, Yamaha MSP5 speakers, Sony picture monitors for the multiviewers and the commentary booths, two HP editing workstations with Adobe Premiere editing software, Sony PDW-U2 disc drives and Matrox MXO2 interfaces, Riedel Performer intercoms,and Harris 6800+ modular frames (for VDAs, embedders, de-embedders, sync pulse generator and so on). Voiceover booths were also integrated for adding commentaries.

Antenna placed the contract with PlayBox Technology on the basis of performance, reliability and the expandable and flexible workflow, as well as for its competitive price. Currently all playout channels are running in standard definition but can be upgraded to HD when required. PlayBox Technology staff provided full training after installation and attended the first week of live operations.


Future plans

Antenna is now in talks with CYTA for the addition of an additional more sports channel. A sports studio is expected to be finalised by early 2014 as a next phase that is planned for May 2014. This will accommodate pre-game and post-game shows of the Cypriot football league.

ANT 1
ANT 1

CCTV CHOOSES PLAYBOX PLAYOUT AND GRAPHICS

London 24 May 2013 – PlayBox Technology has supplied and installed playout facilities for all three of Cambridge Community Television’s channels. These are currently running at SD but can be switched to HD when the channels migrate to the format later this year. The equipment includes three sets of playout and graphics servers together with a two-channel ingest system and a preparation server.

 

“CCTV chose PlayBox Technology for its range of features and competitive price”, comments Hakan Volkan, Area Sales Manager. He continues, “The system design was also seen as flexible, scalable and adaptable, and so able to meet the broadcaster’s expected future requirements”. CCTV cites the integration of TitleBox on-air graphics with AirBox automation and playout servers that allows the unattended, automated running of on-air for graphics, bumpers, ads and promos, as well as program material.

 

During installation, PlayBox Technology’s technical support worked with CCTV to develop custom workflows and special-case uses for the playout system. CCTV is pleased with the features including independent broadcast servers, network-attached storage, a library able to store rich metadata and the ability to prepare schedules in the library itself. Overall, this investment has increased the capacity of a small station to deliver rich media to the community.

 

The workflow starts with CCTV acquiring content from a wide range of sources including live studios, satellite feeds, traffic cameras, digital media files and DVDs. Playlists are prepared in advance and delivered to the AirBox playout systems for the unattended 24/7 broadcast. The on-air graphics are automated and presented live via the AirBox / TitleBox combination.

 

Cambridge Community Television in Massachusetts, USA, is a nationally recognized community media center that is the voice and vision of all residents, businesses and organizations in the city. CCTV provides tools and training to foster free speech and creative expression, and involves people from across the city as producers and viewers of media that is informative, engaging, and as diverse as the Cambridge community. Three local cable channels, 8, 9 and 96, feature programming produced by Cambridge residents, arts and cultural organizations and City agencies. CCTV offers hands-on media production and technology workshops, providing access to emerging technologies and state-of-the-art media equipment, to improve the capacity of our local producers to use media to engage in issues from their own perspectives.



PlayBox Technology
PlayBox Technology

PLAYBOX DELIVERS THIRD PLAYOUT FOR EUROCHANNEL

  

London 9 May 2013 – PlayBox Technology has supplied and installed a DVB playout system for Eurochannel television, complementing the existing two systems that have now been in operation for up to three years with the broadcaster. The new installation provides a fully redundant remote system for Eurochannel’s main platform, for viewers in Europe and Africa. 


The latest PlayBox Technology playout system includes two DVB channels, housed in a single 1RU server, each with +1 redundancy, and a DVB multiplexer. As with the previous two systems, the installation is at Intelsat's facility in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, and includes monitoring and support for the automated transfer of content, allowing the channels to be remotely operated from the Eurochannel HQ in Miami, Florida.


Eurochannel has now been using PlayBox Technology solutions for three years. Gustavo Vainstein, CEO, comments, “We had several choices and after analysing all the possible technology options, we decided that the PlayBox system was the most flexible and the perfect choice for our specific needs. Everything has been exactly as we expected and the servers proved to be very reliable, after the initial setup and onsite training that PlayBox Technology delivered. Most importantly for us, the PlayBox support team is always there to help us and to find creative technology solutions – even when the solutions are not easy to find.”


The first PlayBox deployment, completed March 2010 at the same location, included separate servers for two channels each with full backup. The channels are equipped with multilingual audio streams and DVB subtitles in five languages, delivered via a PlayBox DVB Subtitle Server. These allow viewers to select the high quality DVB subtitles in a choice of languages. The channel outputs are delivered to the satellite uplink for distribution to North America and Latin America.


In the following year PlayBox Technology completed its second Eurochannel installation, providing two IPTV channels for specific HD requirements. This was similar to the first installation but with subtitles embedded (open) in the video by a SubTitleBox module, a part of the PlayBox playout system. Again, the installation was designed to run as a fully independent, remotely controlled platform.


Eurochannel is a world television channel, dedicated to the promotion of European culture and lifestyle, delivering the most exciting and entertaining European content such as movies, series, music, documentaries, fashion events, arts programmes, etc. It covers Latin America, United States, Canada, the Caribbean, Angola, Mozambique, France, Poland, the Balkans, Portugal and Korea. The channel is now available to 15 million subscribers in 30 countries.

EuroChannel
EuroChannel

PLAYBOX AT NAB 2013 - PRESS PREVIEW

April 8-11, Las Vegas Convention Center Booth: N5435

London 21 March 2013– PlayBox Technology, the world’s leading Channel-in-a-Box manufacturer, is presenting its full range of products and services at NAB 2013. The introduction of ScheduleBox expands the company’s established range of products and modular options to meet the increasingly diverse applications for today’s playout channel needs.


The new ScheduleBox is a Web-based client/server solution for creating and managing advanced schedules. Operating within a web browser, the user-friendly GUI handles template-based TV broadcast planning, offering straightforward management of single or multiple TV channels.

Programme schedules with daily, weekly or monthly views, and programme block management per TV channel, are available. Gaps and overlaps are easily identified in the programme blocks. Monitoring and control of the different block statuses, such as Draft, New, Ready for publishing, is available at a glance. ScheduleBox, designed for easier control and information gathering, as well as better organisation, suits any TV channel supporting multi-format schedules with predefined and repeated blocks as part of the programme schema.


Popular complete workflow solutions on show include: 

EdgeBox offers fully redundant automatic remote playout anywhere in the world via the internet. It makes a TV station, complete with local branding and content, an economic reality – even for small audiences. The whole operation can run from an established broadcast centre, at a cost that makes sense. EdgeBox comprises two parts: one integrated at the broadcast centre with the existing traffic, storage, MAM, ingest, transcoding and file transfer systems, and the other at the remote site includes the playout equipment and monitoring.


TimeShiftBox provides channel delays with lossless quality, flexibility and PlayBox reliability for shifts including +1, +2, +24 to +1 week, meeting the needs of satellite teleports, telecoms, international broadcasters and TV networks for delayed TV channel playout. It offers delays from 10sec to 7days+ with logo overlay, multichannel audio, which is kept as AES/EBU data without re-compression, and preserves SDI ancillary data. Configurations include single-channel SDI and HD-SDI. RAID-protected media storage and redundant hot-swap power supplies that help to ensure reliability.


AdBox enables content owners to maximise their business potential by targeting commercials for specific audiences with ad insertion and Digital Programme Insertion (DPI) in both SD and HD, as SDI or DVB (ASI/IP). AdBox provides basic cost-effective digital ad insertion, scales to meet next-generation targeted advertising requirements, and provides a quick return on investment. It can be installed locally, or remotely at the headend, and monitored and controlled via the internet. If required, hundreds of hours of ad insertion and DPI can be scheduled, and an entire stand-alone solution provided, or it can be integrated into the content owner’s current workflows.


PlayBox Technology will be demonstrating all its solutions that include: AirBox, CaptureBox, TitleBox, ListBox, DataBox, SafeBox, QCBox, SubtitleBox, ScheduleBox, and more, as well as fully integrated workflow solutions including: EdgeBox, AdBox, TimeShiftBox, TrafficBox, PlayBox MAM and a technology preview of the future product NewsRoomBox.

PlayBox Technology
PlayBox Technology

BEYOND THE BOX: PLAYBOX AT BVE 2013

Stand B02 London Excel Centre 26-28 February 2013

 London, 23 January 2013 – PlayBox Technology, the world’s leading channel-in-a-box manufacturer, is presenting its new expanded product range at BVE 2013 that includes the launch of its latest module, ScheduleBox, presented alongside the latest versions of its established products. The Broadcast Systems Group is also on the stand to discuss wider requirements, from project concept to completion.


ScheduleBox is a Web-based client/server solution for creating and managing advanced schedules. Operating within a web browser the user-friendly GUI handles template-based TV broadcast planning, offering straightforward management of single, or multiple, TV channels.


Programme templates present per day, week or month views and schedule management by date per TV channel, to provide monitoring and control of all activities, from schedule creation to publishing for broadcast. Any number of users can access and collaborate, based on user rights, and there is full compatibility of programme schedules with the existing playlist format as used in AirBox playout servers and ListBox offline schedule creation. This solution is suitable for TV channels that use a block-based programme schema. It can operate with multi-format TV channels with predefined and repeated blocks as part of the programme schema, and is designed to provide easier control and information gathering as well as better organisation.


Ben Gunkel, UK Sales Director comments, “We have had a phenomenal year of continued strong growth. This is in part due to our Broadcast Systems Group that operates globally, and that we are evolving; now working beyond the ‘box’. Many of our customers want more; they want complete working systems. Yes, our boxes can do a lot but there is always the need for, at least, peripheral equipment. And when customers are looking for more, all the way up to complete MCRs and studios, we are now able to support them, wherever they are.”


PlayBox Technology is running one-to-one demonstrations presenting the latest developments and technology of its playout solutions. BVE visitors can also sit down and talk with the Broadcast Systems Group about complete workflows from a single-channel playout to a multi-channel broadcast centre with MAM, traffic and news. Other popular solutions include TimeShiftBox, lossless quality time delay for +1 channels, EdgeBox fully redundant automatic remote playout with local branding anywhere in the world via internet, and AdBox for local and remote advert insertion.

Ben Gunkel, UK Sales Director, PlayBox Technology
Ben Gunkel, UK Sales Director, PlayBox Technology

PLAYBOX ADDS TO OHTV

London 28 September 2012 – PlayBox Technology has supplied two AirBox playout and automation servers to London-based broadcaster OHTV. These add to OHTV’s existing channels, also supported with PlayBox Technology severs, as the broadcaster continues to expand its operations.


The new AirBox servers are to provide playout and automation for two new OHTV channels. These servers are the new compact versions that occupy one rack unit, rather than the alternative 3RU model. CEO Akin Salami has selected these as the best fit for OHTV’s requirements. “We have been relying on PlayBox Technology for the three years since we started hosting our own broadcast operations. Our first servers were the 3RU type but now we are tight on rack space and the 1RU versions are now perfect for us. These have a bit less storage capacity but our existing shared NAS more than makes up the difference. Now we can expand.”


Ben Gunkel, UK Sales Director, PlayBox Technology, comments, “When OHTV was starting out with its own playout it chose to put its faith in PlayBox Technology. Akin is a very hands-on CEO and really spent time to understand PlayBox Technology as a company before buying into the technology. Today we continue to help OHTV to grow its channels and are looking forward to supporting them for many years to come."


The first OHTV channel is on UK Sky channel 199. The second is beamed to Africa via Eutelsat. After two years a third was started on OHTV’s own IPTV platform for the OH BoX service. This plays out globally to Africa, USA, Australia, Canada and other regions. These three channels each have an AirBox and share a TitleBox live interactive multi-layer graphics server and ListBox offline schedule editor.


OHTV has a backup server that has assumed an extra role. Salami explains, “You can build all sorts of configurations around the PlayBox Technology solution. We run one AirBox as a shadow/backup player so, if a main channel fails, it can kick in and be switched to air via the router. But so far nothing has failed! Today its main use is to take over playout while we are updating the main equipment.”

OH Tv
OH Tv

VIEWSAT EXPANDS WITH PLAYBOX

London, 31 October 2012 – PlayBox Technology has supplied two playout channels to ViewSat, a leading provider of global broadcast and transmission services for television and radio channels. This brings the total of PlayBox Technology channels operating at ViewSat to 25 and continues a long relationship between the two companies.


The latest two playout channels each include an AirBox playout server and TitleBox interactive on-air graphics – the same configuration as most of the previous channels already in operation at ViewSat. Over the last 18 months, the continuing expansion at the satellite transmission service provider has meant that one or two more PlayBox Technology playout servers have been delivered every six-to-eight weeks.


ViewSat started working with PlayBox Technology when its operations began in 2006 and, according to ViewSat CEO, Awaes Jaswal, is now “broadcasting 85 channels and still growing.” Jaswal continues, “We have been using PlayBox because of its reasonable price and the good delivery times. The channel-in-a-box facility is important as it wraps everything we need, automated playout with interactive CG and graphics, into one.”


Jaswal highlights more reasons behind the choice for PlayBox Technology. “The user interface is important. It is straightforward and a lot of our customers are used to it, especially those in the Middle East, which makes training much easier. In addition the delivery is very good. We can get another server from PlayBox in two weeks, or even one sometimes.” 


Ben Gunkel, UK Sales Director, PlayBox Technology, comments, “We are delighted and very grateful to have this long-term business with ViewSat. Over the years we have come to know each other very well and the fact that they keep buying the same server configuration means we always know exactly what they want. That helps us to make quick deliveries.”


The range of capabilities is put to good use, as Jaswal points out. “Our customers use a variety of content mixes – including SMS call bars as well as advertising and the normal programme playout. And sometimes there are live feeds. So there’s quite a bit of variety and there’s also a variety of people that work on the ‘box’.”

ViewSat
ViewSat

PLAYBOX IBC2012 PRESS PREVIEW

September 7-11, Amsterdam RAI, Stand: 8.C30

 London 10 August 2012– PlayBox Technology is launching new products and presenting the latest developments of its established Channel-in-a-Box technology at IBC2012. These include providing new levels of freedom for TV playout by removing geographical barriers and offering greater efficiency and flexibility for all users.

Don Ash, PlayBox Technology Director, Sales comments, “Our plug-and-play file-based playout systems are now well established as low priced alternatives for traditional MCR and other equipment. Now we are perfectly placed to go further by leveraging the huge opportunities of increasingly powerful IT platforms and infrastructure. The aim is to offer customers scope to do more with our products and services worldwide. The EdgeBox remote playout system sparked a revolution; there is much more to come.”


New Multi Playout Manager

Multi Playout Manager (MPM) is a fully assignable monitoring and control system with rights management for multiple AirBox playout channels from one or more internet-connected PCs. Running in a web browser, MPM is a networked workflow solution that enables multi-channel playout centres to monitor and control all channels’ schedules, programmes, media files and more, and to make live changes to the output if required. It can assign full or partial rights for any of the TV channels to one or more people to remotely monitor and control the channels from any PC, tablet or smartphone.


More browser-based products

MPM is the first of a new series of planned browser-based products. These will extend to ingest control, quality control management, advanced programme scheduling and advanced content management. These solutions offer ways to build new low-cost geographically independent workflows for playout to anywhere, from anywhere.


New Global Consultancy Team

PlayBox Technology is expanding its range of services for both its dealers and customers. The new Global Consultancy Team is aimed at larger broadcasters and networks who need to develop systems that, typically, span several locations and have particular workflow and business needs. Such projects are complex and need specialists to develop the required technologies and workflows. Initially the Team will provide consulting for needs analysis, workflow, clarifying expectations and developing the right platform to meet the needs. To provide a consistent approach, it will also follow the project through its lifecycle.


This complements the established 24/7 customer support that can now offer remote monitoring and maintenance. Other available services include installation, commissioning and operational training while the recently formed Broadcast Systems Group supports complex turnkey projects and is already delivering the solutions customers want, on-time and on-budget.


DEMONSTRATIONS AT THE STAND

PlayBox Technology will be demonstrating all its solutions that include: AirBox, CaptureBox, TitleBox, DataBox, SafeBox, QCBox, SubtitleBox, etc. as well as the fully integrated workflow solutions including: EdgeBox, AdBox, TimeShiftBox, TrafficBox, PlayBox MAM and NewsAir.

Multi Playout Manager
Multi Playout Manager

NAUTICAL CHANNEL EXPANDS WITH EDGEBOX

  

London 2 August 2012 – PlayBox Technology has supplied and installed an EdgeBox remote playout system for the Nautical Channel. The equipment now operating at WRN Broadcast in London is providing playout for DISH in Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA.


The EdgeBox at WRN is a fully automated redundant playout solution that includes 1+1 AirBox playout servers along with other equipment. It is operated and supplied with all programme material, local channel branding, schedules, etc., via the internet, where programme contributions from around the world are accepted, edited and aggregated. The channel is relayed via fibre to New York and then onward to DISH in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The EdgeBox installation is a fundamental part of the Nautical Channel’s USA strategy of reaching over 70 million boating enthusiasts.


Laurence Hopper, Nautical Channel CEO, explains, “We were looking for the most cost-effective solution to meet the highest video standards and ensure that our U.S. viewers are delighted with the Nautical Channel. I’d read a lot about the success of PlayBox Technology and so I talked to them. They have a very flexible approach and were able to alter the system design to fit our needs and provide solutions for what we wanted to do.” Hopper adds, “I also liked the way the information was presented – in a clear up-front way. Other vendors started at a low price but they just got more and more expensive as we started to include all the bits and pieces that were needed to make the system work.”

Nautical Channel
Nautical Channel

PLAYBOX OFFERS MORE IN THE BOX AT BVE 2012

Stand B 14, Earls Court 2, London 14-16 February 2012

 London 31 January 2012– PlayBox Technology, the #1 international ‘TV channel in a box’ manufacturer, has been developing and refining its core playout technology for over 12 years. Offering broadcast performance at IT prices it provides reliable hardware-independent solutions that are easy to use, support and maintain. At BVE 2012 PlayBox Technology is giving one-to-one demonstrations of the latest products including the QCBox that now incorporates automatic loudness control, and new single-box multichannel systems.


UK Sales Director, Ben Gunkel comments, “We had a fantastic BVE last year and we’ve got more to offer our customers in 2012. A while back we reached the goal of providing a rock-solid playout platform for HD, SD, DVB and IP. That allowed us to build out, adding more features to provide full solutions to meet our customers’ needs for the complete workflow cycle. Now, with powerful Intel Core technology, we are liberated to do much more inside the box, and so offer much more to our customers.”


NEW FOR BVE 2012

Single Box, Multiple Channels

The latest multichannel-in-a-box products are on show with multiple channels running on one server. Multichannel one-box configurations are now available for AirBox fully automated playout servers, CaptureBox ingest servers and TitleBox interactive CG & graphics servers. A further ‘MPO’ version of AirBox can simultaneously output several formats of the same material. All these new products enhance the value for money for broadcasters, while also reducing overheads, including power and space.


The new multichannel products include:

Multi-Channel AirBox 

Multi-channel AirBox provides multiple video playout channels on one server. There is a wide choice of additional features including Live-in, audio re-mapping, Dolby Digital support and loudness normalization as a part of QCBox. Newly supported video file formats include AVC Intra and Apple Pro res.

Dual-Channel TitleBox 

Dual-channel TitleBox includes a new enhanced scripting engine that allows complete control over the properties of graphic objects, their sequencing and live execution for two video channels. The development of custom applications and 3D objects are also supported.

Multi-Channel CaptureBox

Multichannel CaptureBox provides multiple ingest channels on one server. The channels can be run independently accepting video and creating files. Besides SDI and HDSDI (for HD version) it provides high-quality capturing in variety of compression codecs MPEG 2, AVC/H.264/MPEG 4, DV, IP and more.

AirBox Multi-Parallel Output

AirBox MPO enables the running of two or more parallel outputs providing any combination of formats needed for the delivery of the content. For example, it can simultaneously output HD-SDI, SD-SDI (with real-time rescaling) and IP streaming in H.264 (MPEG-4) and MPEG-2.


MORE NEW PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

24/7 Monitoring and Support

PlayBox Technology in the UK is now making available round-the-clock technical monitoring and support services for all its clients worldwide. With all systems running on standard Windows platforms and the addition of AlarmBox and other monitoring, the status of the equipment can be monitored and, in many cases, fixed from the UK headquarters. This puts experts directly in touch and significantly reduces the need for local monitoring and support services.

Typically the remote services from the UK can supplement the work of existing on-station staff to provide expert assistance as and when needed. In cases where the playout systems operate remotely, such as with EdgeBox, 24/7 monitoring and support provides an appropriate, practical and well-suited service.

TitleBox Player

TitleBox Player is a new all-in-one box product for the automation, scheduling and playout of computer graphics, as well as for control. TitleBox Player allows designing a schedule, complete with graphic transition events, and provides local and remote control of playlist automation. It can be integrated with third-party scheduling solutions such as traffic and news.

QCBox

Following its strategy of constant quality improvement, PlayBox Technology launches a quality control solution that guarantees the successful playout of media files by AirBox. In addition QCBox sets the parameters used by AirBox for audio level control and so can provide automatic loudness control.


DISCOVER MORE AT BVE 2012

EdgeBox

EdgeBox enables fully redundant automatic remote playout anywhere in the world via the Internet. It makes delivering a TV station, complete with local branding and content, to anywhere in the world an economic reality, even for small audiences. EdgeBox enables the whole operation to be run from an established broadcast centre, at a cost that makes sense.

AdBox

AirBox enables content owners to maximise their business potential by targeting advertisements for specific audiences with ad insertion and Digital Programme Insertion (DPI) in both SD and HD, in either SDI or DVB (ASI/IP)

MultiChannel One-Box Solution
MultiChannel One-Box Solution