We asked IBC attendees what gear they wished someone would make

IBC crowd exterior
Neal Romanek
October 2nd 2017 at 10:07AM : By Neal Romanek

What does IBC really want? Teleportation devices!

In our annual "IBC Musings" survey, we asked media tech professionals headed to IBC2017 what technology/product/equipment they wished someone would invent. The answers were provocative, funny and, at times, inspiring.

Without naming names, here is what your industry colleagues wish you were providing:


How about a universal operating system across all hardware devices that could seamlessly integrate software from any source? We may never see this in our lifetimes, but it would surely simplify software implementations and expand the power of the enterprise.

A translation tool that works like the Babel Fish from The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy, so that we British people abroad don’t seem quite as pompous and ignorant. Rocket boots. A robot butler like the one in Rocky 4.

This is a pretty low-tech response, but it would be nice if someone could invent a neat low-cost solution for installing multiple standalone power supplies into equipment racks so that they could be installed with the same degree of care and tidiness as the rest of the infrastructure in the rack and not take up valuable space on the cable tray.

The all IP broadcast station in a box - ready to go.

Selfishly, I wish someone would come up with some truly quality wireless Bluetooth earbuds for the long flight!


IBC Booth with VR


Further integration of “control” throughout the entire broadcast process - from early production throughout editing and the final broadcast.

Unified and commonly agreed protocol standards for audio, video and data over IP - and also for metadata. I would like to see an end to proprietary standards for audio, video and metadata distribution formats so that everybody is able to use them in any direction.

It’s difficult to think of anything that hasn’t already been done. I think further advancements in VR would be cool, but at a more affordable price.

Lightweight, travel friendly production equipment to meet the demands of traveling broadcast professionals!

An end-to-end quality assurance platform.

A video editor that is both easy-to-use and functional. The products out there thus far haven’t been able to do that. The “easy” products get the job done, but when you try to do fine cutting, it’s like doing it with a chainsaw while wearing mittens.

A proper playout channel-in-a-box that can be virtualised in the cloud, mixing live feeds and with sophisticated graphics. Oh, we’ve already done that!


IBC crowd interior


A platform for development of content - software which can manage, manipulate and edit images, video assets and script elements starting at the very earliest stages of project. Various story assets could be used in various data views, including a linear timeline, 3D modelling, gantt charts, collages or mindmaps. It would be a kind of writer / director / producer/ designer think-space, to be used all the way through production, into post and even into marketing. Naturally, it would interface with other scheduling, production and post production software. Since it would be a tool used from the very earliest stages of idea generation, before commissioning, it would have to be low-cost and freelance-affordable.

Apps that allow you to drive broadcast software tools from a tablet.

A magical non-broadcast related machine that could make children be seen and not heard, especially before 8am on a Saturday

A working IP control system.

A camera that would automatically add codecs to it as they were released. 

I would like to see the internet remain free and open. A 4K iPhone with interchangeable lenses would also be swell!

A teleportation device so international travel could be made simpler.

A device that acts as your primary entertainment hub for all content sources and also looks great so you’re proud to have it in your living room when friends come over.

Tiny video drones :)

A cost effective, easy to use, expandable and flexible production control system for video servers and ancillary equipment. Hang on. That's what we make.

It's hard to ignore the rise of AI. As consumer 'big data' develops, imagine bringing this into the media supply chain workflow - all the way back to acquisition - so content could be automatically created on shot, frame or angle popularity with the consuming audience. We'll end up consuming content that we know we want to engage with in a more personalised manor - not just at a 'programme level', but a personalised version of each programme type, and edit just for me and my preferences. It might sound crazy to some right now, but you watch - this will happen!


IBC Booth discussion


A real life Portal Transporter, so we don’t have to fly for 12 hours to Japan or USA. It could be something along the lines of Elon Musk’s ‘Hyperloop transport’, or better still, the in Star Trek. I would even settle for Willy Wonka’s Mike Teavee transportation if it worked!

None, we are already making what everybody needs - or soon will!                     

A device that will allow you to transmit low voltage DC power over a fibre cable.

I’m looking forward to a new calibration solution for monitors, as continuing to improve colour accuracy performance for our monitor is critical.

Apart from the obvious wish for pills that take away the effects of jet lag and a machine to make the fifth day of the IBC show magically disappear, the industry needs to continue to define and refine the standards to make IP video easy for manufacturers and customers to implement.  There’s a whole area of traffic management that has yet to be tackled so that, as an industry, we can ultimately merge all of the IP traffic for video, audio, control, timing, file transfer, newsroom systems, and even email onto a single highly reliable COTS switch – and have that interoperability between vendors.  It’s a big ask, but if we don’t deal with this, customers are going to be locked into specific vendor solutions just as they’re trying to realise the perceived freedom of COTS.

VR glasses that tell you who’s a client, who’s a competitor and who’s a waste of space when they approach your stand at IBC.

One singular API for everything to connect easily!

A holographic projector so I can be in three different places at once.

Real and true focus assistance for camera operators.

We’re already working on it - come to IBC2018 and we’ll show you!