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MediaTech Radar – Content Creation and Production

By Lorenzo Zanni, Head of Knowledge, IABM

Thu 10, 03 2022

MediaTech Radar is a bi-weekly newsletter put together by IABM’s Head of Knowledge Lorenzo Zanni. It focuses on a spotlight topic in MediaTech and reflects on a series of past, present, and future business developments in the industry. In this edition, our spotlight topic is Content Creation and Production.

MediaTech Spotlight: Content Creation and Production

A spotlight topic in MediaTech.

  • We recently published a new Content Chain Trends Report focused on Content Creation and Production. It is a 65-slide analysis of trends in this part of the content supply chain and their effects on media technology spending.
  • In the previous newsletter, I talked about supply chain disruption and its impact on media tech deteriorating between 2021 and 2022 – see our recent report on this. This has had an impact on content creation and production technologies such as cameras as well. For example, we reported that Sony has suspended orders for several recently launched camera models due to supply chain disruption. In December 2021, Sony announced on its website: “With regard to digital imaging products, parts procurement is delayed due to the effects of global semiconductor shortages,” following a series of announcements concerning temporarily discontinued products.
  • In the first MediaTech Radar, I talked about the creator economy – see our recent Briefing on this. This was evidenced as a growth driver in content creation and production technology. Public media tech businesses such as Avid and Blackbird cited the creator economy in their recent calls with investors as highlighted in our study.
  • In 2021, major technology spending drivers such as sports events and scripted productions made a comeback – see the graphic below. In the report, we showed that this had an impact on demand for content creation and production technology, whose outlook grew in 2021 compared to 2020.

  • Despite the return of physical spending drivers, spending on transformational technologies such as cloud has not slowed in this part of the supply chain.
  • The report analyzes many more topics relevant to content creation and production. I have included its table of contents below to provide you a visual snapshot of what it covers. Do get in touch with me if you have any feedback on the report (you can find my email at the end of this newsletter).

 

MediaTech Watchlist: Atomos, Remote Working, Netflix and more…

A watchlist of selected past, present and future business developments in MediaTech.

  • Atomos announced its H1 FY22 results on 15 February 2022. Revenues were up 25% compared to H1 FY 2021. The company highlighted the impact of supply chain disruption on its expenses as well as increasing investment in inventory to ease this issue. It also outlined that its future growth strategy hinges on its new “Series 2” technology platform, which “will introduce connectivity of devices and more software applications across more devices. Connectivity allows for different software solutions, for example cloud-based offerings.” Atomos’ CEO Estelle McGechie said: “Now Atomos is evolving the company through software-enabled products and applications. We’re building on an ecosystem. In the past, we were a hardware-only company with solid growth of 30% per annum average over 4 years. Now we have evolved, and 2 out of 11 products are software enabled. Next, we are building on this ecosystem as every product will have a richer offering, further distinguishing us as innovators in the market, and that is our hardware evolutio We call this next phase of Atomos’ evolution Series 2. In the past, we engineered each product individually. Now we have Ninja and Ninja V+ software enabled. And soon, we will launch Series 2 unifying all engineering on a single platform.” A single platform will lead to more seamless development of new product features, hence making the offering more versatile to different customers and use cases, according to McGechie. McGechie added that this philosophy will affect hardware design as well. This is consistent with IABM’s research arguing that content creation equipment is becoming more integrated and versatile.
  • A few weeks ago, I had a look at LinkedIn job posts from broadcast and media companies to quickly assess remote, hybrid and on-site hiring patterns in the industry (worldwide). There were about 20K job openings out of which 9% were remote, 10% were hybrid, and 81% were on-site. Yes, most job openings are on-site, but is this just for onboarding new (or more junior) employees? When looking at seniority, remote working seems to decrease as seniority goes up while hybrid becomes a bit more significant – though on-site still makes up the largest percentage of job posts. There was no way to control for tenure, unfortunately, as this exercise was focused on job openings only. Of course, this is just an imperfect snapshot of hiring trends at a specific point in time, though it does give us some clues as to what the direction of work is. Certainly, hybrid and remote will play an important role, particularly as they pose important management challenges, though the office does not seem like it is going to disappear any time soon. Again, feel free to share your thoughts on this via email (you can find my email below). This is a roundup of remote working stats compiled by Findstack in case you want to dig deeper.
  • Netflix announced at the start of March that it would be acquiring Next Games for $72m. Next Games had collaborated with Netflix on the game based on the “Stranger Things” series. As reported previously by IABM research, Netflix is trying to build a gaming offering that complements its streaming offering and content portfolio. The company is still however at an early stage of development of its gaming offering, which is signposted on the Netflix app on mobile devices but takes viewers outside of it to play the games.
  • SportsPro Media published a survey on sports media businesses’ technology priorities in mid-February 2022. Data analytics and fan engagement were primary technology priorities in the sports industry – this is consistent with IABM’s research; have a look at our briefing on this. Interestingly, 37.7% of respondents said that the most important factor in developing a successful digital strategy is having “in-house skills/dedicated digital department.” IABM research has often highlighted that the development of direct-to-consumer (DTC) platforms produced a disconnect between media technology demand and supply that ultimately led to more insourcing. This seems to increasingly apply to the sports industry as the sector’s move to DTC has been accelerated by the impact of the pandemic.
  • Last week, I attended Mobile World Congress 2022 (MWC22) for one day – the second day of the show. MWC22 attracted about 50K visitors and 1.5K exhibitors, down from 2019, when there were 110K visitors and 2.4K exhibitors. Still, the exhibition seemed very crowded to me, particularly in the afternoon, and particularly when its attendance is compared to the reports from CES 2022, which was held just about a month and a half earlier. Aside from the mask-wearing, it really seemed like going back to a pre-pandemic trade show. I found the digital experience at the show seamless. I was able to enter the venue easily through a digital badge that was created pre-show. Also, the mobile app worked well, as it was easy to use and even sent me notifications for things I was missing or had forgotten to do. On the other hand, I had more issues with physical experiences such as finding a bottle of water to carry around the show. Cafés provided water in a cup while the few vending machines I found were out of service. Though it might seem like a trivial detail, it made me think that the dialogue at the show reflected this dichotomy between digital and physical. As expected, there was a lot of talk about the metaverse in multiple conference sessions I attended, while, on the show floor, 5G capabilities were spotlighted on most booths. Everything was about digital and while a plethora of shiny new tech gadgets were still highlighted by many exhibitors, they arguably didn’t take their usual center stage.

Thank you for reading this newsletter. If there are topics you would like me to cover, or have information/ideas you’d like to share, please get in touch with me.

Lorenzo Zanni

Head of Knowledge

IABM

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