Asia-Pacific Broadcasting (APB) August 2017 Volume 34, Issue 6 - Page 28

28 Utah Scientific routes the way to IP with Arista Networks The Leyard LED MultiTouch is a new interactive LED video wall developed by Leyard. Designed for narrow pixel pitch LED video walls, the Leyard LED MultiTouch is available in 0.9mm and 1.2mm pixel pitches. Using Leyard PLTS (Pliable LED Touch Surface) technology, the solution is able to provide a 32-point simultaneous interactive surface for a dynamic multi-user experience. Next Month @ X-Platform TV Everywhere PANELLISTS Mock Pak Lum CTO StarHub Michael Cronk Chairman, Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS) Peter Bithos CEO, HOOQ R Technologies are emerging to bridge the gap between broadcasters and their audiences, who are increasingly sharing their lifestyles and media experiences with other users of social media platforms. How are broadcasters and content producers approaching each of these individual platforms differently? Josephine Tan finds some answers … emember the time when American Idol first started? Millions of fans were fixated on their TV screens, with their phones and computers by their side. In order to get their favourite contestant into the next round, they were vigorously voting through telephone lines, Internet and SMS texts. That was in 2002, when the phenom- enal reality singing competition ushered in second-screen audience participation with the introduction of text-based and mobile voting, creating a point of interaction be- tween the broadcaster and the audience. While broadcasting may have led the interactive content wave for more than a decade, many of these interactions are being migrated to social media platforms such as Twitter, the World Economic Fo- rum pointed out in its white paper, Digital Transformation of Industries: Media, Enter- tainment and Information. The ubiquity of social media and smartphones, according to the 2016 report, empowers content creators with “greater power” to create new storylines, and with improved connectivity, data collection and analytics, content creators are able to take advantage of this to har- ness their audiences’ ideas when creating shows. The report also revealed that ena- bling audiences to interact with content creators has the potential to build more loyalty and engagement with the content — particularly if second-screen support for an interactive, community-based ex- perience can be designed. There is a need for media operators to establish a connection with their viewers in order to retain them on their platform, as viewers can be loyal to a platform if they feel included, or if they know that the operator is responding from the other end, says Marini Ramlan, general manager, innovation and distribution, Primeworks Studios, the content subsidiary of Media Prima. Interactive TV requires the viewer’s participation to influence the outcome of the main content, Marini tells APB. “As for social TV, it means that the viewer is commenting and discussing the content on social media platforms such as Face- book, Instagram and Twitter. Sometimes, content creators like us will create special content surrounding the main programme designed to engage with its communities.” For instance, Prime- works Studios and Wau Ani- mation have created two game apps for the Malaysian animated series Ejen Ali. Available for down- load on Android and iOS devices, the two games — Ejen Ali: MATA Training Academy and Ejen Ali: Emergency — are designed for users to play independently without the need to correspond with the actual animated series aired on TV. Marini explains: “Ejen Ali is the first animation series to be produced as the intellectual property (IP) of Media Prima. We developed the games to build our IP and create market awareness. The games also enable us to evaluate the interaction level among our targeted viewers aged between nine and 12.” In the early stages of the series roll-out, she reveals that an ex- periment was conducted to test the interactivity of cross-media. She elaborates: “The format was simple — during telecast, we ran TV bugs that displayed special codes, which can be used to unlock levels in the Ejen Ali game. However, the results were not too encouraging as we found that we needed a high frequency of on-screen graphic logos and promo- tions to encourage engagement. We also learnt that people who are playing our games are older compared to the children watching the series on our free-to-air (FTA) platforms.” To better understand its audi- ences, Primeworks Studios has shifted its concentration onto building the Ejen Ali community on social media platforms, and has been producing different types of content to suit each platform. “We have created Instagram Art for our global fans, YouTube tutorials for the communities, and episode reviews for our older fans on Facebook,” Marini says. “These kinds of special content helps keep Ejen Ali appealing for both ourselves as IP Leyard unveils interactive LED video wall Cultivating a comm engaged audiences Paving the way to IP broadcasting is Utah Scientic, who has been developing next- generation solutions that integrate it