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Science and Creativity at IBC 2017 Awards
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Science and Creativity at IBC 2017 Awards

One highlight at the 50th IBC in Amsterdam was the presentation of the the winners of the IBC 2017 Awards. Dolby was the recipient of the IBC International Honour for Excellence for 50 years of innovation in audio. Founder, Ray Dolby presented one of the technical papers at the very first IBC in 1967. Other winners are BT Sport, Mediacorp and Groupo Media TFO.

“Dolby is dedicated to advancing the science of sight and sound to create and enable spectacular experiences,” said Dolby senior VP and CTO Craig Todd. “The broadcast industry is one of our most important partners in this work, and so this recognition is particularly meaningful for us. All of us at Dolby are very honoured.”

The Awards Ceremony was hosted by scientist and broadcaster Dr Helen Czerski, whose enthusiasm lit up the Auditorium. She introduced 11 finalists for the three IBC Innovation Award categories.

BT Sport won the new Content Everywhere category, for its remarkable, multi-layered coverage of the UEFA Champions League final. “We are very proud that our unique partnership approach allows us to consistently drive high quality technical and editorial innovation that is aligned with our strategic vision to be at ‘the heart of sport’,” said BT Sport COO Jamie Hindhaugh.

Three other projects were highly commended in this category. ESL was shortlisted for its coverage of the 2017 Intel Extreme Masters e-sports tournament, Google for the newest, VR version of Google Earth, and Renfe, Spain’s national railway operator, for its provision of live connectivity, including entertainment channels, on its 300 km/h trains.

Groupe Média TFO, which specialises in content for children, took not one but two trophies back to Toronto. Its Laboratoire d’univers virtuels uses the incredible power of the Unreal games engine from Epic to produce as many as 40 short videos, in real time, each day, from a single studio. It took the Judges’ Prize as well as the Innovation Award for Content Creation.

“Wow! What an honour, as a not-for-profit broadcaster and content creator, to win the IBC Innovation Award 2017!” said CTO Éric Minoli.

Highly commended in this category were the new headquarters for Mediacorp in Singapore – Helen Czerski noted that the list of technology partners was probably the largest ever seen at the IBC Awards– and ITV in the UK for its ITV Phoenix project, which automates the production of trailers and marketing campaigns.

Viacom 18 claimed the award for Content Distribution. Its VOOT service has reinvented the way that video on demand is delivered to mobile devices, tailored carefully to the specific requirements of the Indian market.

“We at VOOT are delighted that IBC has recognised our initiative to fundamentally change content delivery via progressive web apps,” said Rajneel Kuma, Senior Vice President and Head of Product & Technology at Viacom 18. “We hope to keep innovating and taking initiatives that help transform the market.”

The other finalists in this category included Arena Television, for the all-IP Ultra HD outside broadcast truck, used by BT Sport for its Champions’ League coverage. Local broadcast delivery specialist DMC, based in Amsterdam, was shortlisted for its new, cloud-based approach to serving 700 million viewers; as was Sinclair Broadcast Group in the USA, which has seized the advantages of the new ATSC 3.0 standard to move to a more cellular transmission infrastructure.

IBC Best Conference Paper

One of the most important awards is given to the authors of the technical paper which, in the opinion of the peer reviewers, both presents important new work and does so in a clear and engaging way. This year the prize went to Marcelo Souza and his colleagues Jo?o Castellani, Daniel Monteiro and Carlos Octávio Queiroz from Brazilian broadcaster TV Globo.

The paper looked at big data in three ways: using public data to drive the news agenda; using business analytics to understand audiences; and using machine learning to recommend content to viewers.

The judges were also impressed with the readiness to share extensive details with the IBC audience, in the true spirit of sharing knowledge.

Exhibition Stand Design Awards

Each year IBC gives three awards for the most attractive, practical and effective exhibition stands. This year the award for the Best Use of Shell Scheme Space went to Blue Lucy for its fun and eye-catching graphics. Foam Conversion Audio was highly commended.

For its “journey to Mars” theme, HP took the award for the Best Smaller (less than 100 square metres) Free Design Stand. Honoured at the ceremony and highly commended were FilmLight and Sennheiser.

Clean lines, living moss and a solitary rose were the design features that brought Ruwido the award for the Best Larger Stand. High commendations went to EVS and SAM.

Full details of all finalists and winners at the IBC2017 Awards can be found at show.ibc.org/awards. (9/17)

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