Part of the Bashundhara Group, one of the largest conglomerates in Bangladesh, East West Media Group (East West) launched a 24-hour news channel aptly called News24 in March 2016. Slightly shy of its first anniversary, the fledgling TV satellite station is already making a big impact to its viewers.
With a population of over 160 million, Bangladesh is the world’s eighth most populous nation and is home to one terrestrial TV station and 28 satellite TV stations. Access to TV in both urban and rural areas is at an impressive 90 percent.
With a network-led market liberalisation sweeping across Bangladesh, TV viewership in Bangladesh is growing rapidly. It is against this crowded landscape that News24 was launched to cater to an audience looking for quality news coverage – both local and worldwide.
“Launching a brand new TV station has its benefits,” explained Rakib Alam, Deputy Head of Broadcast at News24. “For starters, we had no legacy issues to contend with. We chose Sony as a partner to build a TV station that is flexible, scalable and cost-effective, and ready to meet the challenges of tomorrow’s evolving media environment.”
Drawing on Sony’s track record of building and equipping many of the world’s TV networks, News24 worked closely with Sony, to choose the right equipment and provide technical expertise to help implement an efficient file-based workflow.
After careful review, News24 selected as the preferred platform as it met many of the station’s stringent requirements – especially in the area of speed, content sharing and forging a collaborative network.
“The future of broadcast production will depend on broadcasters harnessing the potential of a streamlined networked media workflow,” said Alam. “We liked Sony XDCAM’s concept of workflow innovation and its potential to accelerate our HD newsgathering and distribution in more ways than one.”
With XDCAM HD422 as its selected workflow, News24 acquired a wide range of Sony equipment for its TV operations. This included HD XDCAM compatible cameras: the HSC-100/100RF, HDC-P1, PMW-400, PXW-X160, and PXW-X70.
Forming the backbone of its studio operations, the HSC-100/100RF is rated as one of the best studio cameras. It incorporates 1.5Gbps optical fibre technology and is equipped with 16-bit A/D conversion circuitry and three ⅔-inch CCDs to deliver superb picture quality for signal transmission over a long distance.
For its outdoor coverage, News24 chose the PMW-400, PXW-X160 and PXW-X70 camcorders – compact but big on performance.
News24 also invested in the XDCAM Deck as well as the mobile recorder. The RX50 plays and records Full HD XAVC Intra and XAVC Long GOP, as well as MPEG HD 422 50 Mbps, MPEG HD 420 35Mbps, MPEG IMX and DVCAM, making it the ideal companion deck for XAVC camcorders.
Another key initiative was the implementation of Sony – a Blu-Ray optical disc based storage system that is impervious to temperature changes, dust, water resistant and with a shelf life of 100 years.
News24 acquired the ODS-L30M, a 30-slot master library unit that forms the basis for the PetaSite Optical Disc Archive scalable library for broadcast, post-production, editing and desktop operations.
“To succeed as a 24-hour news broadcaster you need more than just content,” concluded Alam. “You need a technology partner that will keep you up to speed at every turn. We see Sony as more than just an equipment provider but a solutions expert that helps us deliver better returns and navigate an evolving media landscape confidently.”