Due to more digitalization, the television industry was facing a lot of challenges. The playout chain of TV was becoming more complex, and broadcasters were investing money and time to simplify the process. The channel-in-a-box systems which are unsegregated playout system are developed to handle the complex process of playout virtually. These IT-based playout systems can handle the complex working of the television via media asset management system which has rich graphics, an amalgamation of live as well as prepared contents or audios of different languages. The systems performed automated content preparation are provided with great functional properties like switching, spanning automation, graphics and signal processing. Let us now see why automated content preparation is necessary and what were the challenges faced by manual creation.

Challenges Faced By Traditional Way

  • Increase in File Format

There has been an exponential growth in the number of file formats and the delivery of non-linear content. Most of the incoming resources are delivered as files in the multichannel and there are more than 50 formats of these resources which are to be managed. They come in file wrapper formats or even codec formats with multiple spanning. All these files need to be checked after ingesting them and normalized to ensure they can be supported on different platforms. Doing it manually increases the risk of losing metadata. Problems like aspect ratio errors, audio track issues or excessive noise were faced. Scaling the complex real-time signals was difficult.

  • Preparation of VOD

The range of VOD is increasing ever since. Generating so much VOD content was becoming difficult and could have been solved by increasing staff which needed more budget.

  • Less Response

New media platforms were emerging and to respond back to them dynamically was becoming difficult. As broadcast workflow is isolated from others, there was a time lag.

How Automated Content Preparation Solved the Problems?

New broadcast systems were designed which could use pattern recognition. There were some rules laid out based on which there would be an automatic validation of content, and it would be playout-ready. Even machine learning is incorporated into the software to ensure they could work efficiently in the future. The entire workflow can be established by scheduling and covering the content. Let us see how it has helped in details:

  • Managing File Formats

The automation software is tightly coupled to simplify the workflows. The normalization can decrease the staff needed for QC and the errors in QoS, thus improving its quality. The normalization process of the automated software is adapted to the origin of the resource. This ensures efficient processing of the files. If the files have already been standardized, the content doesn’t need to be evaluated manually and can be sent to processing grid directly. The automated review is received from there, and the errors are reported. But, if the files are coming in an unknown format, it needs to be assessed manually to decide the normalization it needs. The audio tracks, format and other factors like loudness are checked to understand optimal processing that needs to be done to make it compatible.

  • Preparation of VOD content

The demand for personalized content has grown drastically, and there is an increase in new formats. The broadcasters have come up with ‘TV-Everywhere approach’ to cope up with the demand. They allow viewers to watch the content and doing payment in personalized devices at any time. VOD has become far more complex nowadays as the broadcaster provides the content in multiple languages along with subtitles. The volume can be controlled, AFD, SCTE triggers can be added. The lastest VODs have automated software which helps the broadcasters to make it simple. The segments are identified, and the assets are stored efficiently to ensure detection of any errors.

Technology is developing exponentially and to maintain viewership’s, it becomes extremely important to incorporate new software. The automated content preparation has simplified the tasks and helped the broadcasters to provide with great content.

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