Tim Felstead, Head of Product Marketing, SAM
In an ever-changing and evolving market, the challenge for vendors like SAM is to create the production and delivery tools needed to enable multi-format simultaneous workflows to manage the complexity of producing SD/HD/UHD/HDR for delivery to multiple platforms in parallel. At the same time, there is a need to understand the business models and opportunities this fragmented media landscape offers. All this must be done while keeping costs under control – and this is before IP comes into the equation.
Our customers need to be more robust and flexible than ever to meet the challenges of a market that has never been more fragmented. SAM is committed not only to delivering agile and innovative solutions that help them to meet the challenges of today, but also to enable them to make riskless investments in new technologies that will allow them to meet their future business needs.
Irrespective of the format or technology (SD, HD, UHD, etc.), or how broadcasters are looking at delivering content – via over-the-top services (OTT), to social media in the case of news channels, or in the form of traditional linear broadcast – SAM has developed technology solutions to help. It does not matter at what stage in the migration process they are – whether they are moving from analog to digital, SD to HD, SDI to IP, or HD to UHD, SAM has developed a range of technologies that enable broadcasters to make this transition as painlessly and as cost effectively as possible.
For broadcasters looking to migrate to new technologies or workflows, it is not just the cost of the physical equipment that they need to bear in mind. The management, deployment, and support of that equipment outweighs the ticket price quite considerably. It is critical that they work with technology suppliers that have a clearly defined migration path so that their investment is protected in the longer term. SAM puts a lot of effort and investment into making sure that it has a very strong product roadmap. It is very important to both us and our customers that they can migrate at a speed that works for them, and that they can not only control their costs, but also make sure any future transitions or upgrades are as smooth as possible.
SAM's work with IP is a good example of how we collaborate with customers to make their migration as riskless as possible. SAM customers are already using IP solutions, making use of that infrastructure to handle everything from HD to 4K/UHD. We have earned a reputation for understanding the business needs and challenges that our customers face, and for technology that is both flexible and scalable.
The other part of our strategy is to address the broadcast and media industry as a whole, and we now deliver solutions for a wide range of applications and verticals. Historically, Quantel and Snell (the companies from which SAM was formed) were active in the high-end market, primarily addressing the Tier-1 broadcasters. We still service this end of the market, but through our product development we have also opened up access to the latest technologies that would have been out of many customers' reach until recently.
Whether this is in the form of the Kula production switcher, the ICE CiaB offering which comprises everything a smaller broadcaster needs to get three to four channels to air, or our new highly cost-effective production package for the small to mid-sized broadcaster, these solutions address a variety of production applications, including live sports, houses of worship, outside broadcasting, and education.
SAM's strategy is very much technology agnostic. We are all about addressing the needs of broadcasters – of all sizes – and helping them to make the transitions to face the challenges of a market that is more competitive than ever before.