As IBC2015 gets closer, we continue our series of short Q&As with manufacturers about their plans and offerings, to help you get the most out of the annual trade show. Cam Eicher is director of Global Radio Sales for The Telos Alliance.
Radio World: How has business been for the company since last year’s IBC Show?
Cam Eicher: Business is great. Thanks to the incredible support of broadcasters, we continue to see the widespread adoption of IP within the industry. AoIP in the broadcast plant has very nearly become the de facto standard for new installations; IP codecs are increasingly widely accepted for on-location broadcasts. Despite recent concern over exchange rates and other economic forces, industry professionals continue to choose our products, for which we are very grateful.
RW: What do you anticipate will be the most significant technology trend at IBC2015?
Eicher: I think that IP inside the broadcast plant will continue to be the hot topic for at least the next five years, as more and more broadcasters see the advantages of in-studio networking. The growing trend we’re seeing within this larger wave is that AoIP is now being chosen on a consistent basis by operators of smaller facilities. The proliferation of low-cost, high-performance Ethernet switches, and low-cost mixing consoles with integrated switches, such as our own Radius and iQ desks, is helping broadcasters on tighter budgets to enjoy the advantages of studio networks for about the same cost as traditional analog gear.
RW: How has IP technology affected your company and its product development?
Eicher: We’re glad everyone has caught up! Seriously though, IP has been at the core of our company’s growth and development since 1999, when Steve Church first began researching the idea of networked audio in broadcast facilities. We’ve been at the leading edge of the IP wave, and our clients have rewarded us for this. We see a future where even more things are connected, where productivity and ease-of-use rise to even greater heights, and where we never stop innovating.
RW: What new goodies will your company be showing? Why should attendees visit your stand?
Eicher: Our engineers have been hard at work on some great new products in the audio processing field. We will be showing the new Omnia VOCO 8 microphone processor, which hosts eight independently-configurable mic processors in a single rackmount device. The new Omnia.7 has been attracting lots of attention for its combination of premium processing features and mid-range pricing. And our Z/IPStream family of software and hardware processing/encoding products for Internet audio streaming will be adding a new streaming appliance that integrates with a very large, well-known streaming services provider. Come to our stand to find out who!
RW: The Internet has changed the way people do business. Some would say that it has rendered shows such as the IBC obsolete. Is this true?
Eicher: It’s fair to say that the Internet has changed the way people gather information, but it hasn’t changed the need to inspect, to touch, to get a hands-on feel for the way a product looks and operates. It hasn’t changed the need for human connection either. Broadcasting is after all a business whose purpose is connecting people; we never want to diminish the value of the human touch — which is why, I think, our clients flock to our stands wherever we are.
RW: You’re a show veteran, what’s your favorite thing about the show? Least favorite thing?
Eicher: The best thing about the show is seeing all of our friends and renewing those personal connections! The worst thing is … baggage fees. Yuck.