I arrived yesterday morning for the final 2 days of the NAB (National Association of Broadcasters) show here in Vegas. The size and scope of this show is overwhelming; 110K attendees and thousands of exhibitors of “all things digital content”. The show is so large that it takes up the entire, multi-building Las Vegas Convention center. I quickly traded my leather “hard” shoes for tennis shoes and set out to explore.
NAB has done a good job of bringing together a colossal number of exhibitors, yet organizing them so they are grouped by “community”.
Here are the community groups:
Acquisition & Production
Cameras, Lenses, Capture Accessories, Capture, 4K, Virtual Production, Set Design, Motion Picture/Film, ENG Vehicles, Workflow Solutions.
Home of: 3D, Lighting and Grip, French Pavilion, Belgian Pavilion, Bavarian Pavilion, KOTRA Pavilion
Content Aggregators, Syndicators, Studios, Content Publishers, Advertising and Commercials, Motion Picture: Film and Documentary, News/Weather/Traffic, Short-form Programming, Sports, Stock Footage, Videogames, UGC.
Home of: Content Theater, Content Lounge
4K, Digital Signage, TV Sets, Monitors, Projectors, Projection Screens, Video Display, Ultra HD.
Distribution & Delivery
HDTV, 4G, Antennas, Transmitters, Towers, Broadband Connectivity, IPTV, Digital Cinema, Mobile Video, Mobile DTV, Microwave/RF Accessories, Cable Equipment and Headend, Test and Measurement, Fiber to the Home, Telepresence, Streaming, Software/Applications/Middleware, Wi-Fi/Wi-MAX.
Home of: Satellite Technologies, Brazil Pavilion, French Pavilion
Management & Systems
Digital Asset Management, Storage, IT/Network Infrastructure and Security, 3G B/S, Signal Management, Systems Integration, Cloud Computing, Routers, Master Control, Newsroom Automation, Video/Content Servers, Multicasting, Workflow Solutions.
Home of: Cloud Computing Pavilion, International Research Park, Mobile DTV Pavilion, UK Pavilion c/o Tradefair, ATSC Tech Zone
Interactive Television, OTT, Content Delivery Networks, Encoding, Streaming, Advertising Platforms, VOD. more
ENG, SNG, DSNG Vehicles and Services, Mobile Production Studios, Outdoor Signage, Power Generation, Satellite Uplink. more
Animation and VFX, Digital Intermediate, Editing Software/Hardware, 3D Technologies, Motion Graphics, Mastering and Duplication, Character Generation, Music and Sound Libraries, Subtitling and Closed Captioning, Encoding, Format Conversion, Workflow Solutions.
Home of: Post PIT, Plug-in Pavilion, Sound Track Central
5.1, Audio Editing, Mastering, Mixers, Effects, Production, Post-Production, Encoding, Recording, Compression Technologies.
Home of: Pro Audio PIT
Analog, Digital and Streaming Technologies, HD Radio, Antennas, Transmitters, Towers, Automation, Master Control, News and Weather Services, Advertising/Media Sales Solutions, Encoding, Microwave/RF Accessories, Scheduling Software, Signal Management, IT/Network Infrastructure and Security, Web, Mobile and Video Applications.
Being a data storage nut, my favorite area was the Management and Systems. Storage for the great “Content Shift” demands high-speed systems with built-in resilience. I saw many of the traditional players like EMC Isilon, NetApp, DataDirect Networks and Nexsan but was surprised by the large number of small newcomers. I also met several companies like Active Storage that are native to the broadcasting industry and seem to have a great story for high-performing storage.
I was also hoping to meet the folks from Starboard Storage and Nexgen but they were no-shows. I suspect there was just not enough time to handle the logistics given their recent launch status. Likewise, I also wanted to see either Xsigo or Virtensys of virtualized network fame but, again, they were no-shows.
The goal today is to get out of my storage comfort zone and check out some of the 3D booths. This place makes me dream of a day when you can virtually travel without being at the mercy of late planes! From the looks of things here, I’d say we are pretty close.