The biggest show last week in Las Vegas was not at Mandalay Bay or the Bellagio. It was instead the NAB show. The NAB is the advocacy group for American broadcasting, and the show was one of its biggest ever. Over 17 thousand exhibits regaled ninety-eight thousand attendees with the latest audio and video production and distribution technology.
Across 35 football pitches of floor space, companies wowed attendees with the latest broadcasting innovations for content production, distribution and monetization. One company showed off their aquatic satellite relay stations, while another displayed acoustical nano-dongles for noise filtration. Nielsen, a global leader in measurement and information, specifically of how consumers interact with media - announced their upcoming digital-ad-attribution system. This project will help big brands place a value on ad-engagement, and shift more ad dollars online.
One high profile pavilion inside the show featured 27 tech startups and was sponsored by such iconic media brands as Disney, Gannett and Google. It was interesting (and telling) to see a Hearst Newspaper executive literally embrace a Googler on the stage. The startups there are solving issues and exploiting opportunities created as vast troves of video are delivered digitally through the internet. For example, one startup called Tomorrowish displayed a type of social media DVR where video is time shifted, shared, commented on, personalized and curated by vast audiences.
The NAB selfie
Overall, the show was an impressive display of the extensive supply chain that creates and delivers great content. As a side note, Wifi access was a prohibitive $80 per day. Without it, I couldn’t interact with all the important show content. To me, this symbolized old distribution models that restrict access to great content. Next time I’ll hope to engage the NAB on all my devices with free personalized, interactive programming, and sponsored by partners and a long chain of digital value-adders. Unleash and Expand!
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