PlayBox Neo Ltd reports a buoyant 2019 with strong demand for its Channel-in-a-Box and software-based TV channel branding and playout systems. Total unit deliveries reached and surpassed 18,500, supported by product demonstrations at NAB Las Vegas, Broadcast Asia, IBC, NAB New York and regional events in various countries.
“Our Channel-in-Box series, refined over 20 years, continues to sustain us as one of the strongest performing companies in the global playout solutions market,” says PlayBox Neo CEO Pavlin Rahnev. “Success in the media playout sector stems from paying close attention to the industry’s needs. The primary demand in the playout sector is for operational flexibility. PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box can be configured from a wide range of software modules to match practically any workflow and any required level of backup security. With our SaaS-based Cloud2TV offering, we also offer great flexibility in the way channel managers can handle supplementary aspects such as intelligent archiving, event-specific channels and emergency recovery.
“Channel-in-a-Box and Cloud2TV can be operated independently or as an extremely powerful and scalable hybrid. All PlayBox Neo products are supported by our engineering team working with our various offices around the world plus a global network of distribution partners. The market has responded very positively to our current-generation Neo19 software. We have also seen increasing demand for 24/7 support and software upgrade services which we offer as an option, including server maintenance contracts with some of the industry’s large playout facilities such as BHS and ViewMedia.”
In the MENA market, one of the largest PlayBox Neo projects completed during 2019 was a broadcast playout system with 37 servers for Nilesat at its headquarters in Cairo. Nilesat provides a wide range of satellite-based facilities including transmission of over 700 television channels, 600 of which are free-to-air. The new system was provided by PlayBox Neo channel partner Modern Broadcast Center which is based on the west bank of the Nile directly across from downtown Cairo.
In the USA, PlayBox Neo playout system expansion was completed at the headquarters of US public service broadcaster WLVT-PBS39 in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. This forms the second phase of a project commenced in Q4 2017. Phase 1 centered on the installation and commissioning of a three channel AirBox Neo19 for master control, a ProductionAirBox Neo19 for live news and live production, plus two channels of CaptureBox Neo19 as the basis of a major upgrade to the channel’s media manipulation and delivery system. Phase 2 system expansion added a second ProductionAirBox Neo and two extra channels of CaptureBox Neo.
A playout solution was produced for BTES Tennessee, one of the USA’s leading IPTV service providers. Forming its core are Neo-series Channel-in-a-Box servers which are now being used for the management and playout of BTES Power 7 at the broadcaster’s headquarters in Bristol, Tennessee.
It Is Written invested in a playout system from PlayBox Neo at new ministry headquarters in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Neo gives IIW the freedom to transmit live as well as provide on demand content so viewers can choose to watch what they want at whatever time works best for them.
A broadcast-quality playout system was provided for Northwestern University at its main campus in Evanston, Illinois. The installation comprises a Production AirBox Neo, TitleBox Neo graphics and a twin-channel CaptureBox Neo. NWU’s challenge was to find a versatile, efficient and operator-friendly solution that would integrate easily with the newsroom. The university made a careful study of all the playout solutions currently on the market and identified PlayBox Neo as the logical choice.
Canada’s first over-the-air religious television station, Miracle Channel, expanded its PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box playout system to power an additional channel for cable and satellite viewers. Station staff control playout on a fully prescheduled basis while at the same time having the ability to transmit live. Selecting the same system for the new channel delivered advantages in terms of staff training and enables operators to work with total confidence right across the network.
APAC projects included a new installation for Life TV Asia which chose PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box as the heart of its broadcast playout system at Marikina City in the Philippines. The installation forms the central part of an infrastructure upgrade designed to maximize the station’s operating efficiency. It includes two 1U Channel-in-a-Box servers to allow full transmission via terrestrial digital, direct-to-home satellite and cable. These provide the full channel branding and playout capabilities Life TV Asia needs to transmit live and scheduled content in standard definition and high definition.
Thai broadcaster Mono Plus upgraded to latest-generation PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box playout. The upgrade includes two HD Channel-in-a-Box systems, each with SafeBox Neo19 for automatic content/playlist transfers, configured as main and backup. These have integral encoders allowing direct export in XDCAM-MXF file format. PlayBox Neo also provided refresher training to demonstrate the extra versatility of the latest-generation software.
A PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box playout system was completed for Indonesian high-definition television broadcaster BeritaSatu. Integrated into the network’s Jakarta headquarters, it replaces earlier third-party equipment as part of a technical modernization program.
Expansion of an existing playout system was completed at the Jakarta headquarters of Biznet which owns and operates Indonesia’s largest telecommunication and multimedia data center. Four PlayBox Neo Channel-in-a-Box servers form the core of the system, three existing units powering HD satellite and terrestrial channels plus a new 4K UHD server.
Rajamangala University of Technology in Thailand chose a Neo-19 series Channel-in-a-Box playout system as the heart of a new online TV channel. Operated by staff and students of the university’s Mass Communication Technology faculty, the channel forms a basis for training in the techniques of broadcast television content production and distribution. In addition to its broadcast training role, the channel functions as a central hub for content relevant to the university’s various academic courses for students to access streaming and on-demand resources wherever they choose.