05 Jan 2022

BASE & Veritone a Year in Review 2021

Throughout 2021, base and Veritone have continued to innovate under difficult circumstances. Implementing a landmark solution for Extreme E and attending the Broadcast Sport Tech Innovation Forum were the highlights of the year.

Extreme E implemented a fully remote production for the global race series, which includes live coverage across race weekends, highlight shows, 30 minute race previews and over 300 VOD films for digital. It was a truly global operation with on-site content capture from locations such as Saudi Arabia, Senegal and Greenland, to a Barcelona-based AI system managing the car telemetry with AR and VR overlays in the Netherlands.

The base and Veritone partnership enabled Extreme E to manage content, with the ability to upload from anywhere into a centralised storage location as well as manipulate, search, view and download. Veritone’s Digital Media Hub (DMH), a cloud-native storage and content distribution platform, powers their operation. We manage this by integrating Digital Media Hub with our accelerated file transfer and cloud storage platform.

After transmission, all live programming and other content including highlights and digital content is uploaded to Digital Media Hub for rights holders to search, view, and use. More than 70 broadcasters have negotiated rights to Extreme E including Discovery, Sky Sports, Fox Sports, BBC, ProSieben Maxx, Disney ESPN and TV Globo.

“The benefits of cloud production and distribution with base and Veritone is a real 101 for us,” said Dave Adey, head of broadcast and technology for Extreme E. “It’s the initial building blocks that we needed.”

In November, base and Veritone co-sponsored the Broadcast Sport Tech Innovation Forum at the BFI Southbank in London. A highlight of the event was a live panel called Racing Through the Clouds. BASE and Veritone were joined by Rupert Williamson, Events Director, Gran Turismo Explore Studio, Polyphony Digital Inc.

Rupert spoke in detail about the work his team are doing to support the famous FIA Gran Turismo Championships. Digital Media Hub, integrated with base’s accelerated file transfer and cloud storage platform, is used to support the production and distribution of all broadcast and event content around the world. With the combined technology, we brought together multiple production partners, teams, drivers, and other key stakeholders.

A key reason for success was the way that Digital Media Hub supported remote content upload from more than 50 drivers located all over the world during the World Finals. It was a COVID-19 related challenge that was overcome by the base and Veritone powered cloud-native solution.

“The Veritone and the base partnership is so successful because we have common business values and goals—in simple terms, we speak the same language.” said David Candler, Senior Director of Customer Solutions at Veritone. “We were both very early cloud adopters and continue to take full advantage of key cloud-native innovations and working practices. We also fully understand the enormous opportunity for Artificial Intelligence to assist in virtually every customer use case that we come across on our travels together. We look forward to continuing our combined success story for years to come.”

Building on our success with products like Digital Media Hub, base, and Veritone aim to expand their portfolio in the media and entertainment space with Enterprise AI solutions. With our consultative approach with customers, we can work with Veritone to uncover new use cases for artificial intelligence, growing our offerings together in 2022.

base is proud to be working with Veritone on our distribution services for sports, ad agencies and gaming brands. It has been fantastic working on Extreme E and the FIA Gran Turismo Championships in 2021 against a complex market backdrop and we look forward to pushing new boundaries in enterprise AI for our global customer base in 2022 and beyond” concludes Ben Foakes, base CEO.

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22 Nov 2021

“We put a terrific 24/7, 4K channel on air across the globe in less than six months”

67 Pall Mall is a private member’s club that brings together people who have a passion for wine and fine dining. The club has recently launched 67pallmall.tv, a free channel available to anyone. The channel’s content is created by wine lovers, for wine lovers. Live and on-demand, the channel’s content includes virtual wine tasting and programmes featuring winemakers, experts and industry leaders. To launch the channel, 67 Pall Mall needed a central platform to store, edit and manage the content.

Managing content for the new channel across the globe created numerous challenges. Transferring files from the shoot location to the central London office, a way to manage the content that included an approval system and a custom workflow that enabled assets to be exported from their MAM to a third-party playout system, Veset Nimbus. The editors, production staff, and producers all needed to be able to access the content remotely, with minimal friction, and collaborate seamlessly during the editing process.

base conducted a digital workflow audit to identify the most effective and cost-efficient way to solve these challenges, without compromising on the user experience for the team. Storage was managed first, with a centralised cloud storage solution, erasure coding data across three UK data centres for additional peace of mind. To enable super-fast file transfer in and out of the cloud, base deployed a UDP accelerated transfer service with an easy-to-use branded web interface. With enterprise-grade security, users on-location could upload rushes directly to the base storage platform at Internet line speed, accessible for all 67 Pall Mall approved system users. A customised Iconik Media Library solution was integrated by base which automatically scanned, indexed, and transcoded viewing proxies of the content for users to view.

Several other custom base features were included in the solution, improving the experience for the 67 Pall Mall team. This included metadata tagging with custom fields, Ai-powered automated transcription, and a review and approval feature which allowed time-based commenting by authorised users. Each of these features enhanced the digital workflow and enabled the 67 Pall Mall team to store, collaborate and deliver efficiently.

base created a bespoke integration with 67 Pall Mall’s third-party playout system, Veset Nimbus enabling the 67 Pall Mall team to export an individual file from the Media Library with a custom sidebar XML metadata file and share the asset via the central cloud storage platform, ready for playout to 67pallmall.tv.

base’s team of media and cloud experts provided comprehensive training and onboarding services for all users, to ensure the 67 Pall Mall team could take full advantage of the new bespoke workflow.

There are numerous benefits for 67 Pall Mall working with their new cloud-based digital workflows. Each element of the media management process can be scaled up and down depending on their needs. If content capture and creation increases, so can the storage and file transfer capacity, and the same applies if it were reduced. With content securely stored in the base cloud storage platform, the 67 Pall Mall team can access their content from any location, whenever it is needed. Unlocking a new way of working has enabled the 67 Pall Mall team to bring their members the finest food and wine content directly into their homes.

Richard Melman – “We put a terrific 24/7, 4K channel on air across the globe in less than six months under full lockdown. I have no hesitation in saying that without base this simply wouldn’t have been possible. It has become an essential tool for the whole team and enabled us to review, change and approve edits within hours. Often taking programmes from rough cut to on-air on the same day.”

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19 Nov 2021

BASE accredited as Adobe Video Solutions Partner

Digital media cloud solutions experts, base, receive Adobe recognition by being named an Adobe Video Solutions Partner. Expanding on a close relationship between the two companies, the new program will see base receive privileged access to knowledge-sharing, training and developer tools from Adobe, whilst supporting Adobe customers with their move to the cloud.

 

The program will continue to build on the expert cloud and media workflow knowledge of the team at base. With a customer base of over 80 global companies, base has seen a huge uptake of Adobe Creative Cloud by its end-user base and has developed a number of 100% cloud-native solutions and integrations with Adobe. These include backup, shared storage, media asset management and fully virtualised post-production facilities services.

 

Michael Gamböck, Senior Strategic Development Manager, Creative Cloud Video comments on the partnership, “We are pleased to have base join our network of Adobe Video Solution Partners. We have been working together successfully for years, and we will intensify this cooperation. The already deep knowledge about our solutions has been enhanced through intensive training and a know-how transfer so that our customers can benefit from base‘s comprehensive service offering.”

 

As part of the new partnership, base is now investing in a number of deeper cloud integrations with Adobe’s software portfolio, including a forthcoming storage integration with recently acquired Frame.io.

 

The base partnership with Adobe has enabled a transformational shift in the working practices for content creation, production, and post-production. Utilizing base’s platform, custom integrations and portfolio of custom applications, base is able to seamlessly integrate Adobe remotely and empower its customers to transition into both hybrid and fully-remote working solutions.

 

Ben Foakes, base CEO said:“The whole team is really excited to be working with Adobe. It’s a major inflection point for base, being partnered with one of the world’s biggest creative software brands. We have been pioneering cloud-based solutions for digital media workflows since 2014 and this new partnership is going to further boost our cloud solutions portfolio, our growth strategy, and the supportive relationships we have with our global customer base”

 

 

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25 Aug 2021

BASE Media Cloud & Telstra Broadcast Services forge new sales partnership

Two leading companies link to offer the APAC market an impressive new range of cloud-native broadcast services.

Telstra Broadcast Services (TBS) is expanding its cloud-native services for the broadcast industry by entering into a sales partnership with UK-based BASE Media Cloud (BASE), a leading provider of cloud services for the digital media industry. These new services will allow their newly established Telstra MediaCloud to provide a complete end-to-end cloud-native workflow from ingest, cloud storage, file transfer and asset management through to virtual post-production and file delivery.

The new services will be initially rolled out to the Australian industry, with plans for expansion to the rest of APAC following soon after.

With interest in cloud-based workflows accelerating as a result of the pandemic, TBS is able to leverage BASE’s expertise to provide a production proven suite of tailored remote working services. These include cloud storage, file transfer, transcoding, and cloud-native asset management through to virtual Adobe editing, custom Artificial Intelligence, and content distribution SaaS services. All of these will be offered as part of the established Telstra MediaCloud package to Telstra customers.

BASE meanwhile gets to further drive its international expansion plans via a valuable strategic channel partner, building further on its established position in the UK market — where cloud subscription partners include BBC, ITV, Formula E, Little Dot Studios and LadBible Group — and strengthening footholds on both the US east and west coasts.

Leading cloud-based editing and post services represent the start of what we can do in our partnership with BASE,” comments TBS’ Paul Slowey. “Our new ability to deliver complete end-to-end workflows allows us to offer a more fully-featured cloud consultancy service than ever before, and gives us the capacity to cope with digital transformation and cloud-migration projects for broadcasters of any size.

We are delighted to be collaborating with Telstra Broadcast Services to roll out these new services first to the Australian market and then on to the rest of APAC,” says BASE Media Cloud’s founder and Managing Director, Ben Foakes. “We believe the combination of Telstra’s expertise in networking and infrastructure and our Software-as-a-Service subscription layer and media-focused cloud expertise provides a compelling solution as more and more broadcasters seek to take advantage of cloud-based workflows.

About Telstra

Telstra is a leading telecommunications and technology company. We offer a full range of services and compete in all telecommunications markets in Australia, operating the largest mobile and Wi-Fi networks. Globally, provide end-to-end solutions including managed media networksmanaged network servicesglobal connectivitycloudvoicecolocationconferencing and satellite solutions.

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23 Jul 2021

Content storage: Accelerating Cloud Migration In Search of Cost-Savings and Efficiencies

The pandemic appears to have provided the necessary impetus for more organisations to invest systematically in cloud-Based content storage.

When it comes to content storage and the cloud, there is plentiful evidence to suggest that the last 18 months have provided a ‘perfect storm’ in which an already present trend has been significantly accelerated. This applies as much to organisations already some distance down that road as to those at a more formative stage of the transition.

Raul Alba, Avid’s director of solutions marketing, points to two virtual events – held 12 mon apart – devised to help Avid keep in touch with its customers during lockdown.

“If we compare the discussions we had in both series of meetings, we have seen a significant change in the mindset,” he says. ths apart – devised to help Avid keep in touch with its customers during lockdown. 

In the most recent meetings, just weeks ago, every single customer we talked to has included clouds in its plans. Not all customers we talked to are at the same stage: some just want to be sure that any vendor they choose to work with has a roadmap to go to the cloud, while others already want to start migrating to the cloud as soon as possible.

Nonetheless, one can infer that the shift in viewpoint has been fairly dramatic in some quarters. 

For me, the most surprising aspect is how things that were seen as completely impossible or nonsense a year ago, today seem to be ‘plan A’ for many organisations,” says Alba.

Tailored solutions

As a leading innovator in the media cloud space, BASE Media Cloud has been well-placed to track the recent uptick in demand for cloud storage. Pursuing what it terms a ‘tailored cloud solutions’ approach for digital media companies, BASE Media Cloud provides clients with a central, cloud-Based media hub in which to store all their files and then seamlessly connects to a choice of pre-integrated Software as a Service tools. 

Working with media SaaS partners across multiple clouds – including AWS, Google and IBM Cloud – BASE can facilitate tasks such as automatic multi-site syncing for large files, accelerated global file transfer, remote Adobe editing, and sophisticated media asset management.

Ben Foakes is founder and managing director of BASE Media Cloud. He says that the company’s focus on “simplifying and packaging up” cloud storage and services has served it well. 

The way we work is that we don’t charge egress, retrieval or API call fees, and we have done all the network integration and behind-the-scenes work to do with running on multiple clouds. We started the business to simplify the cloud for media, and that continues to be [our primary objective].

Nonetheless, there is always room for improvement, and Foakes reveals that a current focus of development is “a self-service experience that means each client will have an app to access and automatically set up their environments and the way they want to work. It will make the cloud and related services more simplified for the actual users.” 

“There have been a lot of enquiries from companies over the last 18 months who are looking to close down their buildings, get rid of their hard drives and physical equipment, and go across completely to a virtual way of working for their creative teams,” he says. Meanwhile, for the more reticent organisations “who had previously been thinking about the cloud and adopting a more online, collaborative way of working, the pandemic has provided the necessary impetus to move ahead with their plans.”

Financial benefits

For Avid, Raul Alba has a clear sense of why migration of storage to the cloud is accelerating at this point: “The reasons why customers are moving – or considering moving – to the cloud are mostly related to flexibility in their operations, lower TCO [total cost of ownership] when all the factors (real estate, electricity, AC and maintenance) are considered, and the predictability of the financial cost of operations, tied to an Opex financial model.”

With this in mind Avid, continues to evolve a family of solutions that prioritise flexibility and dynamic storage of resources. These include Avid NEXIS | Cloud and Avid NEXIS | EOD, both of which are underpinned by the Avid NEXIS | File System (FS) running on cloud storage. The File System features a storage infrastructure that is managed and automated by intelligent software rather than by the storage hardware, and is virtualised into a single pool of shared resources which are allocated dynamically with the required composition of data services (such as capacity, bandwidth and protection).

Elaborating on AVID | NEXIS Cloud, Alba remarks that this “delivers tiered storage in the cloud, supporting online, nearline and archive storage for real-time media workflows. [Meanwhile] Avid NEXIS virtual storage workspaces allow complete control over the allocation of storage to individuals, teams and projects.”

Apples for apples?

Bob Bolson, director of solutions architecture at Imagine Communications, echoes many of the aforementioned factors behind the current growth in cloud storage, but also indicates that it has taken a while for the market to become more well-defined. 

At the start, he notes, “there was a lot of really expensive online storage as well as [storage solutions] that were almost like the equivalent of tape archives. But since then more tiers of solutions have become available, and that has given customers [more flexibility].

Indeed, at this stage, he points to an interesting “blurring of lines between different types of storage, so for instance a customer might want to dip their toe in the water for a certain service or type of production. It might also be that, in some cases, the price difference [between traditional and cloud storage] is not so dramatic that it immediately becomes [a must-have].

Increasingly, though, he believes that customers are likely to take a holistic approach to determining their storage arrangements. 

For instance, the benefits of cloud might become fully clear “when they drill down into the pricing, and consider the cost of the real-estate, cooling systems and manpower needed to keep [on-premise storage] up and running. They need to have a critical eye and speak with people who can give them the full story; it’s not just apples for apples.” Moreover, it is likely to be the cloud providers who can allow workflows to remain relatively unaltered who stand to benefit the most: “People like continuity, so the more you can make the workflows look and feel like those with which they are already comfortable, the better.”

Enabling content creators to carry on working in familiar ways is also a priority for Aveco, which announced the launch of its new GEMINI Media Asset Management (MAM) solution at the end of June 2021.

Designed for cloud, hybrid-cloud and on-premise use, GEMINI allows users to manage media and AI-enriched metadata, plus timeline annotations describing any frame or segment of an asset. Content assets are under control across all types of storage, including in the cloud, NAS and SAN, and video servers.

Pavel Potuzak, CEO of Aveco, says: “The introduction of the GEMINI MAM brings powerful tools that are easy to use, so people can concentrate on the task at hand, anywhere in the world and on any browser.

In terms of storage strategies, it’s clear that we are in a period of transition that may last several years yet. But with broadcasters wanting to access, process and distribute content more flexibly than ever before, it’s certain that the share of storage provided by the cloud will continue to grow steadily across the M&E industry.

By David Davis

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24 May 2021

Green Rock closes office to go fully virtual

Post house shuts Soho premises and adopts cloud-based software.

Green Rock post house has closed its physical office in favour of permanent virtual workflows as it embraces lockdown working practices for the long-term.

The 13 year old business, which has worked on post projects including Netflix’s Myths and Monsters (pictured above), has given up the lease on its Goodge Place office which contained six edit suites.

Its 12 staff will continue to work from home full-time, as has been taking place under lockdown, rather than dividing their time between working from home and the office as restrictions lift.

Green Rock founder and chief executive officer Simon Green said the industry is facing “a real wakeup moment” as businesses attempt to introduce flexible working regimes.

 

“As staff begin to return to offices, there will be a realisation that the solution isn’t flexible working,” he said.

Green Rock, which will make considerable rent-related savings, has invested in developing it’s own virtual edit system, Green Rock Virtual Creative Solutions (VCS), to enable the shift, working closely with BASE Media Cloud and Adobe.

Green said the model will allow the company to take on more work than was previously possible and help it navigate any future lockdowns more easily. Under lockdown, it was operating a hybrid system under which editors were having to download huge files from the physical edit suites to their desktop computers. However by shutting the suites it is able to fully embrace a virtual tech platform.

“I’m having conversations with bigger broadcasters and other companies on more ambitious projects,” he said. “Working in the cloud means we will have no limits.”

Cloud-based editing will also allow Green Rock to scale up and down more rapidly to react to demand, which Green said is a “huge benefit during the uncertainty of Covid”.

“The pay-as-you-go model gives us ultimate flexibility and scalability,” he added.

Green Rock has begun conversations with an Indian producer about an HBO series as going online-only helps it to win more international business without requiring execs to travel to its office.

Green said that working virtually is no less efficient or effective than face-to-face edits.

“There is a lot more productivity in the early stage as editors can really get their heads down on their own,” he said, adding that in the later stages of an edit, livestreaming video technology allows producers and directors to collaborate seamlessly.

By from Broadcast 

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