Viodi View – 04/14/14

NAB 2014 Notes and Pictures

Large 4K displays will create immersive experiences and interactive billboards (think billboards that change based on the audience).
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The “B” (broadcasters) in NAB was somewhat smaller in scope compared to the innovation surrounding the capture, post-production and digital distribution of video that years ago used to be sent exclusively over-the-air. NAV would be a more appropriate acronym for the multi-day conference that NAB hosts in Las Vegas each spring. Video (and audio to a lesser extent) is the common denominator to the sessions and the vendors that populate the massive exhibit floor.

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Ultra HD 4K Here Today

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Ultra HD 4K video was everywhere at NAB 2014. Netflix’s launch of its House of Cards TV series in this format, which offers 4 times the definition of current high-definition programming, indicates that it is rapidly moving from camera to eyeball. Parks Associates research reinforces the idea of relatively fast consumer acceptance of Ultra HD 4K video when they suggest, ”That within the next 2-3 years, 4K televisions will reach mass-market pricing, which will be a major driving force between an increased adoption rate in American households.”

Click here to view this interview with Dave Foley of Nanotech who foretold the rise of Ultra HD 4K earlier this year, as he explained their product offering which includes a studio to consumer offering of content and devices.

The Thin as a Tablet OTA & OTT DVR

A picture of Channel Masters' booth at CES 2014.
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As thin as a tablet, this Digital Video Recorder, DVR+ from Channel Master enables consumers to cut the video cord. This recently introduced device integrates over-the-air and certain over-the-top content (VUDU at launch) into a common guide. The secret to its thin profile is that a hard-drive is not included; external USB storage is required for recording. Similarly, WiFi connections require a USB adapter (there is an Ethernet interface for hard-line connections). Channel Masters’ pricing is unique in that there is only a one-time cost, with no ongoing subscription fees.

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Our Time Is Now, #Summit21

Ken Pyle interviews Matt Polka at the 2014 ACA Summit.
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“To come to Washington, to move the agenda forward and really try to achieve the reform we have been fighting for, for 21 years,” said Matt Polka, as he described the objective of this year’s ACA Summit. As Polka predicted at last year’s summit, there has been movement in the regulatory realm since last year’s event. He points to this week’s FCC’s order preventing top-4 broadcast stations from negotiating retransmission consent as a single entity in a so-called joint services agreement. He discusses this an other topics that will be top of mind in the next couple of days, including net neutrality, Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act and the Comcast acquisition of Time-Warner.

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Dare to Fail

Ken Pyle and Matt Polka at the ACA Summit 2014.
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A phrase like, “Dare to Fail,” isn’t typically expected to fall from the mouth of a government worker. Tom Wheeler, cited that phrase – which also happens to be a chapter title from his book – Take Command!: Leadership Lessons from the Civil War – as one that would describe his approach as FCC Chairman. Given his background as an entrepreneur, venture capitalist, wireless and cable trade association leader and historian/author, Wheeler brings a broad and deep perspective to his relatively new role as the chief U.S. telecommunications regulator.

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Question All Assumptions

Dave Fridley of Farr Technologies discusses how broadband operators can do more with less.
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The use of Google Maps as an engineering tool is one of the many ways, Farr Technologies has been able to re-engineer, the engineering process. Started just 18 months ago, Dave Fridley and his partners have greatly exceeded their own growth plan. In his MTA presentation, he spoke of the idea of questioning all assumptions, as it is imperative that operators build multiple new revenue streams from the broadband pipes they have installed.

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The Korner – 73 Magic Management Words + 2: Book Review

Everett Christensen and one of his quotes from his new book.
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MTA 2014 was a great source of learning for me, as I had a chance to interview many subject matter experts discussing how broadband operators’ can provide even better service to their customers.

Someone who would appreciate this idea of not resting on one’s laurels and providing better service is Everett Christensen, as to quote him, “We need to appreciate what we have, but not be satisfied with it.”

This happens to be the title of one of the chapters of Everett’s latest book, 73 Magic Management Words +2.

As frequent ViodiTV viewers know, Everett is also the owner of Christensen Communications, a broadband operator out of Madalia, MN. Christensen Communications is just one slice of the very rich life he has had in the banking industry, as an HR Director, as a professor of management and as owner of multiple businesses, including a movie theater.

Unfortunately, Everett wasn’t at this year’s conference, so I didn’t get a chance to interview him about the book. The above video provides a flavor for the exhibit hall at this year’s MTA, while providing a mini-review of his latest work.

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