One in a series about exhibitor plans at the 2021 NAB Show.
Doug Ferber is Tieline’s VP sales for the Americas.
Radio World: Doug what looks to be the most important tech trend at the NAB Show?
Doug Ferber: The first thing that comes to mind is the continued or expanded use of long-term remote broadcasting from home. Radio broadcasters will want higher-quality setups now that a decision has been made that more talent will be working from home permanently. Because of this, flexibility to add new air talent from anywhere using scalable, high-capacity AoIP solutions will also be imperative.
Technological consolidation and centralization will begin to take on momentum. The trend towards more consolidation will have a profound effect on the size and buildout of the main studio.
Tomorrow’s main studio will be significantly smaller or eliminated completely. If not eliminated, it will have a mix of higher-capacity hardware and cloud-based solutions to reduce rack space requirements and provide more support for remote contribution.
There will be renewed talk and focus on failover, redundancy and backup. And I would not be surprised to hear that analog’s days are now numbered.
RW: What will be your most important news or theme?
Ferber: Our engineering team never stops innovating and has been extremely busy in the last 12 months enhancing Gateway codec streaming capabilities.
Initially compliant with AES67 and SMPTE ST 2110-30 for audio transport, in a few short months we have added compliance with NMOS IS-04 and IS-05. These standards deliver discovery, registration and ultimately control for ST 2110 AoIP streaming.
We have added support for WheatNet-IP in a continuation of our partnership with the folks at Wheatstone. Most recently we added support for phase-locked 6 channel (5.1 or 6.0) or 8 channel (7.1 or 8.0) surround sound streams, and phase-locked 4 channel audio streams. An upcoming release will also deliver Ravenna interoperability and other exciting new features, so stay tuned for more.
RW: How is your latest offering different from what’s available on the market?
Ferber: With the introduction of the Gateway 4-, 8- and 16-channel codecs, Tieline now has a “leaner” product line than in the past. I equate the Gateway to the space shuttle, while all the rest are merely Sputnik. It has the channel density to consolidate your studio hardware, more failover than can be imagined, and the ability to syndicate to enough locations to allow you to get rid of the expensive satellite delivery service that you may have been using. AES67 out of the box, WheatNet friendly and overall feature-rich.
I’m confident in saying that there is nothing on the market today that can challenge the Gateway on quality, capability, and bang for your buck.
RW: How has the pandemic affected Tieline’s business?
Ferber: Between the pandemic and the introduction of the Gateway in December, we have been very busy. Our fiscal year ends June 30, so in the Americas — including Canada, the U.S., Mexico, Central America and South America.
— our business last year was up, likely as a result of the increase in remote broadcasting equipment needs as well as the introduction of the Gateway line. Sales of the Gateway have been robust from the start.
Globally, sales have not been affected much by the pandemic, even though there have been challenges in various markets such as travel restrictions, lockdowns, etc.
RW: In what way will your booth plans or customer interactions differ because of the pandemic, if any?
Ferber: We will be making NAB decisions right up until we are at the airport headed to Las Vegas. Our team from Australia won’t be with us this year, as it’s logistically difficult for them to travel, but the entire team from our U.S. office will be there on the floor of the convention center. As far as customer interactions are concerned, we will be following CDC guidelines and will have plenty of free hand sanitizer available. We want to meet with as many of our customers as possible while in Las Vegas.
Each year Tieline has a codec giveaway, so come by to see the new Gateway, pick up some cool Tieline swag and let us scan your NAB ticket to enter in the codec drawing.