NAB 2019: a major success for Bridge Technologies
“The time has come,” the Walrus said, “to talk of many things: of shoes, and ships and sealing-wax, of cabbages and kings— and why the sea is boiling hot, and whether pigs have wings.”
That’s always been one of my favourite poems – The Walrus and the Carpenter, by Lewis Carroll. It’s just so wonderfully absurd. I thought about it recently flying home from a hugely successful NAB show for Bridge Technologies, because I was wondering whether, for Bridge; for our long time advocacy of all the good things IP brings to broadcasting; and especially for the VB440 – our time really has come?
Let me tell why I was thinking that, and why NAB was such a successful show for us – the best so far. But: where to start? With the awards we won? Our participation in the IP Showcase? The visitors from all over the world who flocked to our booth? The excellent dinner with our business partners?
I’ll start with the awards we won at NAB – because those are, in my view, evidence of the industry agreeing that what we have is something very special. (Well, we’ve been telling them long enough…) That’s particularly true of the VB440. The VB440 IP Probe won not only the TV Technology Best of Show Award, but also the NAB Show 2019 Product of the Year Award, which recognizes the most significant and promising new products and technologies being showcased by exhibitors. That’s wonderful recognition. Who doesn’t like winning awards? And winning two is even better.
Still at the show: we again took part in the IP Showcase. What was really enjoyable about that was not just helping to demonstrate to the industry that IP is here and now and delivering not only the interoperability it’s always promised, but real business benefits too – it was that we were being sought out by visitors who wanted to know more about 4KoIP. I’d like to think that’s because we’re known as the industry experts on that topic.
Of course, our participation in the IP Showcase followed hard on the heels of the VB440 being used as part of the Test Plan devised by JT-NM (the Joint Taskforce on Networked Media) which will see vendor equipment assessed for conformance with the SMPTE ST 2110 and SMPTE ST 2059 standards. For the VB440 to be used, in effect, as an industry reference is an enormous accolade.
Back to the show… I mentioned that we had many visitors to our booth, which featured a representative sample of our growing product range. Inevitably, there was much focus on the VB440 – but the VB330 was also attracting a lot of attention too. No surprise there, given its unique support for Remote PHY/L2TP. And: if any of our visitors were under the illusion we were just a two product company – well, our NAB booth put them right. We were quick to remind them that all our probes – the VB120, the VB220, the VB288 and the rest – are all IP probes. And then, of course, we were also showcasing NOMAD, Instrument View and Remote Data Wall to show them we’re not just a probes company either – we’re a network solutions company.
The number of visitors to our booth was rewarding – but what gave us even more pleasure was the quality and diversity of those visitors. These weren’t tire-kickers, come to pass some time and drink some of our excellent 4K cappuccinos (served by an even more excellent barista). Our visitors were from all around the world – and many of them were key industry players from the various regions. Suffice it to say: we have a lot of following up to do, now we’re back home. That’s a very reliable indicator of a great show.
And then there was dinner with our business partners. That’s always one of the great things about shows like NAB and IBC: they also provide an opportunity for us all to get to get together. We held our dinner at the world-famous Stratosphere – and also enjoyed an excellent time at Golf World, where things got so competitive that, even in a chilly (for Las Vegas) 15°, there was plenty of sweating…
To all our business partners, our customers and those who visited our stand: a very big thank you.
So, yes, a great show for us – that in many ways echoed what we’ve been seeing and hearing in the marketplace since NAB 2018. IP now has real momentum – and our IP message and expertise are resonating with the industry, as are products like the VB440 that provide unique support to the industry as it makes the transition.
It’s safe to say that our time has indeed come.
By Simen K. Frostad, Chairman of Bridge Technologies