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NAB Exhibitor Viewpoint: Isabelle Sost, Netia

The continued evolution of media consumption demands innovation on the part of radio broadcasters

The spring NAB Show is approaching. Between now and then Radio World will conduct several short Q&As with manufacturers about their plans and offerings, to help you get the most out of the big annual trade show. Isabelle Sost is communication and field marketing director for Netia.

Radio World: How has business been for the company since last year’s NAB Show?
Isabelle Sost: Since the conclusion of the 2015 NAB Show, business has been strong and our ongoing development efforts very fruitful. Last year we introduced the Netia Media Assist software suite at the NAB Show, and this powerful solution has been embraced worldwide by media facilities such as ABC News radio here in the United States, Mediaworks in New Zealand, Sky in the United Kingdom and the Public National Radio of Algeria in North Africa, to name a few. We’ve seen an expanding array of Netia deployments in both new and existing markets, and we have supported this success with key appointments internally and a variety of new partnerships that strengthen our global presence.

RW: What new goodies will your company be showing? Why should attendees visit your booth?
Sost: Netia will highlight at our booth N3435, the AirPlayList 2.0 module for the Netia Media Assist software suite. AirPlayList 2.0 facilitates automated playout of multiple radio channels simultaneously and with guaranteed redundancy. Making it easy to launch and maintain Web radio services, the module provides targeted encoding of audio streams for CDNs such as Shoutcast and Icecast and — in parallel to Web radio playout — leverages Media Assist AirPush datacasting functionality to deliver associated metadata such as artist, title, album and more. The audio over IP-compliant module enables broadcasts using a traditional physical sound card or IP-based virtual drivers, and its intuitive Web-based interface enables convenient monitoring.

Also new at the 2016 NAB Show is an on-demand media logging feature targeting users who need a simple solution for simultaneous capture and review of numerous audio and video feeds, whether from a broadcast, public debate, internal meeting, or other production. Valuable in applications ranging from legal review to security, this feature makes it possible to perform high-volume real-time recording and monitoring locally through the rich-client platform or from anywhere via the software’s Web-based interface. Recorded content can be indexed and enriched with additional metadata to speed retrieval and review. Because it is fully IP-based, this feature requires no additional infrastructure or hardware.

RW: What is the biggest problem or challenge facing users in your market segment right now?
Sost: Fast delivery of content in multiple formats via multiple platforms is a daily challenge. The Netia workflow engine, part of our media asset management system, addresses this problem and helps customers deliver content and monitor distribution seamlessly throughout the day.

RW: What do you anticipate will be the most significant technology trend at the 2016 NAB Show?
Sost: Some of the significant technology trends we’ll see at the show will reflect the advance of Internet-delivered content into the mainstream and the increasing use of IP infrastructure to create and distribute this content. This year’s NAB Show will offer an exciting array of technologies and solutions that acknowledge the new status of nonlinear platforms, as well as the eventuality of IP-based infrastructure supporting entire content creation and delivery workflows. For our part, we look forward to showcasing technology that enables flexible playout of multiple FM or Web-based radio channels using a traditional physical sound card or IP-based virtual drivers.

RW: How has IP technology affected your company?
Sost: IP technology has come to play a critical role within the broadcast industry, and Netia has developed the new AirPlayList 2.0 module based on this technology. IP means less equipment and less dedicated hardware for broadcasters. It frees our clients from needing massive infrastructure, and it opens the door to virtualization of production.

RW:What do you think about the new hall/floor layout this year?
Sost: We will see when we get there. It will be our first time in the North Hall.

RW: You’re a show veteran, what’s your favorite thing about the show? Least favorite thing?
Sost: The NAB Show conference and exhibition always gives us a valuable opportunity to demonstrate our products for a broad and engaged audience, and it also allows us to highlight key developments from the past year. Although full days at the show booth can get long, we always are rewarded with the chance to reconnect with existing customers and to speak with potential customers about the exciting benefits that Netia solutions can bring to their businesses.

RW: Social media is the new marketing frontier these days. Is it affecting the way your company does marketing/business?
Sost: Certainly. Netia takes advantage of social media outlets to connect with new and existing customers, provide timely news, and offer insights related to our products and the industry. However, we still feel that the best way to build relationships is through direct, personal interaction, and for this reason Netia remains an enthusiastic participant in the NAB Show and other regional shows that facilitate face-to-face meetings.

RW: What are you hearing from your customers about their business outlook this year?
Sost: The continued evolution of media consumption demands innovation on the part of radio broadcasters, who must adopt transformative technologies in order to increase both their market share and their listener pools. We’re hearing confidence from broadcasters that feel that their radio automation solutions will enable them to offer extended services that will lead to greater exposure and revenues. We’re also hearing from our customers that agility in bringing timely content to their audiences will be another indicator of business success in the coming year.

RW: In what areas should we expect growth or the most interesting projects?
Sost: The integration of cloud-based processing into radio automation solutions promises to transform the way journalists and reporters work. With the shift of demanding processing tasks to the cloud, key operations such as transcoding, rendering, mastering, encryption, quality control and proxy generation can more readily be triggered and managed from the field. As result, the entire news production team — working in the field or facility — can play a more valuable role in the timely creation and delivery of unique content.

NAB Show Booth: N3435

Radio World invites you to register for a free NAB Show Exhibits-Only pass using our VIP code: LV9443.

To see more show Q&As visit our NAB Show 2016 Web page.