Collaboration in the cloud: The next leap forward for live video production

Collaboration in the cloud: The next leap forward for live video production

IABM Journal

Collaboration in the cloud: The next leap forward for live video production

Scott Lunn, Head of Content, Grabyo

Wed 20, 04 2022

We’re living in a time of seismic change across the broadcast and media industry. The rise of OTT, the dominance of social media platforms and the advancement of cloud technology have transformed the landscape into an almost unrecognizable state than that of a decade ago.


With so many new platforms to choose from, consumers are watching video across more screens and channels than ever before. For media organizations, this has presented both challenges and opportunities.


The foremost challenge is keeping up with consumer demand – winning, and keeping, the attention of your audience. To do this, today you must execute a comprehensive multi-platform video content strategy that spans almost every medium and format available.


But how? First, you must look to your supply chain and video production workflows.


These must be designed to harness all of your available resources and manpower to collaboratively create quality video content at scale, and in a timely manner.

Fostering true collaboration


Traditional video production hardware and software can limit you in this task. Firstly – in order to collaborate effectively you’ll need to have invested in an expensive production studio, equipped with lots of highly trained personnel using hardware with a limited shelf life. Even when you’re all set up, distributing video across multiple digital, social and broadcast platforms requires you to replicate workflows and create managed archives with more equipment and personnel. Instead of allowing production teams to focus on what they do best, they are often waiting to receive assets from further up the supply chain to edit and re-format for distribution.


This workflow is also difficult and expensive to scale; you’ll always need more physical space, more equipment, and more people with more training.


This is where the cloud comes in. Companies like Grabyo are building truly collaborative workflows that streamline the entire end-to-end process and help production teams do even more with less.


The key to collaboration is flexibility. Producing content requires your team to have access to everything they need at the right time and place.


Grabyo’s cloud-native platform enables anyone, using just a web browser, to access their live video feeds, VOD assets, graphics and their archive to produce live and real-time video content from anywhere in the world, at any time. Instead of replicating workflows, you are able to deliver video content to multiple channels and platforms simultaneously.


The truly collaborative nature of the cloud enables all production roles – from technical directors, to graphics operators, A1s, marketers, remote guest contributors and beyond, to be in the same virtual studio at the same time, even from opposite sides of the globe if necessary.


Video production workflows hosted in the cloud work slightly differently when it comes to scaling – instead of adding new hardware or software, you are able to ‘spin up’ a new production environment in the cloud, like opening a new virtual studio, which is accessible from anywhere almost instantly.


All of the heavy lifting is done behind the scenes – in Grabyo’s case, in the cloud servers of Amazon Web Services (AWS) – so the weight of video processing, rendering and distribution is taken away from a local machine. This is designed to enable remote and decentralized production workflows, further untethering production teams from the studio.


Modern production technology like Grabyo’s also follows the industry trend of being focused on the user experience. Ease of use has become a necessity, as it removes those restrictions for finding a production crew with years of training, while opening up opportunities to collaborate with talented producers all over the world.

Lessons from the pandemic


While it is well-worn ground, the impact of the global COVID-19 pandemic was a litmus test for all video production workflows, asking questions of reliability and flexibility. The lessons will not soon be forgotten.


When teams were denied access to studios or offices, collaborative working for many was reduced greatly. Many turned to the cloud to fill those gaps – be it fully virtual cloud production, or remote access software.


Those using cloud-native platforms such as Grabyo were unaffected – these production environments are accessible anywhere using just a laptop/PC, and could easily be scaled to service any new requirements. With no live events taking place, these organizations were able to quickly build and experiment with new live shows, without using any additional resources. This flexibility brought about new formats and video content that continues to engage audiences to date.


Installing new remote access software did enable organizations to keep content on-air, but in the long-term, they do not allow companies to scale their production supply chains as seamlessly as solutions built in the cloud, due to their dependence on local hardware and software.


Decentralizing production and the future


The 2022 NAB Show will be a marked occasion, not just because we are able to return to the Las Vegas Convention Centre after a two-year hiatus, but because we will get a sneak preview of what is to come. This year’s NAB will mark a significant step in Grabyo’s mission to build a decentralized, fully-fledged broadcast production system in the cloud.

At booth W3500, Grabyo will be showcasing the latest advancements it has made to its live production platform, including the ability for users to produce end-to-end broadcast-grade live video, in SRT and Zixi format.


Grabyo was one of the first companies to build a robust digital and social video production platform. Its live clipping and publishing service has led the market for many years and it has strong partnerships with the likes of YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Twitch and Snapchat. In 2022 it partnered with Instagram and TikTok to add to its native distribution tools, having been selected in an exclusive group to launch TikTok’s Video API.


Boasting major clients such as UFC, Univision, The Television Academy, Arizona Cardinals and FOX Sports, Grabyo’s disruptive technology has laid the foundation for collaborative live video production in cloud, and is used by a number of distributed teams across the world, who are delivering localized real-time and live video content to multiple markets.


Its mission to bring the full functionality of traditional production hardware to the cloud is not an easy one – it will be the first cloud-native platform to offer end-to-end production and distribution to broadcast, digital and social platforms and remains committed to delivering on this vision.


Truly decentralized production will bring new levels of reliability, creativity and collaboration to video workflows. It’s the next big leap for video production that will revolutionize the broadcast and media industry once again.


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