Sony Pixel Power calrec Sony

How the BBC used a private 5G network for its Commonwealth Games coverage

18/08/2022

Ian Wagdin, senior technology transfer manager at BBC R&D, talks to TVBEurope about the broadcasters recent deployment of a private 5G network, and the lessons learnt

By Jenny Priestley

Published: August 18, 2022

Ian Wagdin, senior technology transfer manager at BBC R&D, talks to TVBEurope about the broadcaster's recent deployment of a private 5G network, and the lessons learnt

target=_blank title=Share on LinkedIn class=share-linkedin>

During the Commonwealth Games, the BBC tested 5G standalone non-public networks to provide live pictures from the centre of Birmingham.

Ian Wagdin, senior technology transfer manager at BBC R&D, talks to TVBEurope about what happened, and the lessons learnt.

Why did you take the decision to trial using 5G during the Commonwealth Games rather than an event like the Women's Euros? The Commonwealth Games is an ideal event with lots of activity over a long period from a fixed location. We knew we would have the ideal test conditions but also the ability to plan ahead and work with various teams to deliver their requirements. We started thinking about this trial before Christmas and worked with multiple teams both internally and externally to deliver a complex trial.

Had you done any testing before The One Show broadcast? We worked with BT and Vislink/Mobile Viewpoint to test the theory in the labs. We have also done some work on our own NPN in partnership with the University of Strathclyde. Up until now, these have been more focused on low latency applications for radio cameras, rather than the contribution workflow and how you might deploy this type of solution to support newsgathering and colour pieces around a major event. We have also piloted similar projects in partnership with the IBC Accelerators, but all of these have been one-off isolated trials using bespoke technologies and not a multiday deployment using commercial equipment.

The One Show's Richie Anderson live in Birmingham Was that the first time 5G has been used on a non-sport broadcast? We have used the public 5G networks since they became available in 2019, but this is the first time that we have deployed a standalone non-public network of this type. Public networks do provide a step up in the current technology, but they suffer from some limitations in that they are often reliant on 4G cores as well as being used by the public. By deploying the network in this way, we can guarantee quality of service as well as tune the network for greater uplink capabilities. We are also able to tune our coverage area so we can be sure of where our cameras will work and where they may be less reliable.

Who were your partners on the trial, and why did you choose to work with them? The network has been provided by BT Media and Broadcast and the camera encoders by Vislink's Mobile Viewpoint. BT are keen to explore the commercial and regulatory model for this type of solution and Mobile Viewpoint have a long history in bonded networks as well as the Vislink expertise in broadcast radio cameras, which means we could test multiple aspects of the solution.

Were you able to use network slicing? We did not need to deploy network slicing as part of this trial as we only had two devices with a dedicated uplink of 150 Mbps and there would have been no benefit in slicing the network. We are working on other projects that do benefit from slicing both on public and private networks.

How did the trial go, were there any surprises? The trial went better than expected with coverage proving more robust than we had anticipated. We were also able to explore behaviours such as cell hand over and roll over to the public network. As with all experimental technologies we wanted to measure a lot of edge use cases. Mobile networks behave differently from traditional broadcast diversity networks and this led to some issues with cell handover - we are working to better understand how this could be managed.

The BBC's network is in N77 spectrum centred on 4050 MHz, which enables it to tune for better uplink What was the biggest challenge? The biggest challenge with this type of project is to define and keep within scope. We took some conscious decisions to work on areas that had not been tested to date and not replicate previous work that has been done previously. As an industry, we have been very joined up with lots of sharing of outcomes though groups such as 5G MAG and the IBC Accelerators, and we are working with multiple partners to identify what worthwhile tests and trials look like.

Did you have RF backup in case of any problems? As this was an R&D trial, we were clear from the beginning that we were not broadcast critical. The BBC deployed both RF and bonded cellular over the period of the games to support its broadcast requirements.

Do you have plans to test the technology again soon? If so, when and what for? We are working on several 5G projects including the 5G Records project, which we will show on the EBU stand at IBC, as well as on some IBC Accelerator trials that build on what we have learnt from previous years. We also have our own NPN which we would like to use. We have proven the technology but there are some commercial and regulatory issues that need to be better understood to support this type of deployment. We are in close conversations with several broadcasters on how this technology may be deployed in the future.

What do you view as the future of 5G in broadcast production? There are several areas where 5G could benefit production. 5G is an IP based technology and while traditional RF is very well understood, as we move from digital to IP based workflows we want to start to take advantage of this. We want to explore how we may be able to use the backhaul for reverse channels such as camera control, talkback, prompters, tally lights etc, as well as how we can integrate wit
LINK: https://www.tvbeurope.com/media-delivery/how-the-bbc-used-a-private-5g...
See more stories from tvb

More from TVB Europe

23/09/2022

IMAX acquires streaming technology company SSIMWAVE

IMAX's technology and post production teams will work with SSIMWAVE's engineering team to develop new solutions for delivering IMAX-quality video experi...

23/09/2022

Meet the director of product management

Ateliere Creative Technologies Eric Toulain discusses why the media industry is more fun than any other industry hes worked in, and even though its a big indust...

23/09/2022

BFI pledges 7.3 million to support testing, development and delivery of new solutions for screen sector

Screen Culture 2033 details how the BFI aims to build a diverse and accessible s...

22/09/2022

A timely migration to the cloud for motion compensated frame rate conversion

James Shepherd, CTO, InSync Technology, takes a look at how frame rate conversion can help broadcasters meet the ever-growing demand for high-quality content B...

22/09/2022

disguise announces cloud-based end-to-end remote collaboration solution

The solution will provide teams with all the apps required to store, preview and review high-resolution media, tag content and leave comments on projects in the...

22/09/2022

Cooke Optics opens new UK production facility

The Crest Rise facility has been specifically commissioned to facilitate a fast introduction of the companys new S8/i FF T1.4 range By Jenny Priestley Publish...

22/09/2022

Bertelsmann puts M6 up for sale following failed TF1 merger

Bertelsmann CEO Thomas Rabe said the company has been inundated with expressions of interest after the news that the merger with TF1 had been called off By J...

21/09/2022

Video Europe adds Canon's CN8 lens to inventory

Video Europe said it expects to take delivery of the first 20 lenses at the end of November 2022 By Jenny Priestley Published: September 21, 2022 Video Eur...

21/09/2022

25.2 million virtual production studio to open in Belfast in 2024

The 57,000 sq ft building will include two large-scale virtual production stages with in-camera visual effects stage, a motion capture stage, a 3D scanning stag...

21/09/2022

Enfield-based London Film Studios officially opens its doors

The complex has been deliberately designed from a gaffer's perspective By Jenny Priestley Published: September 21, 2022 The complex has been deliberate...

21/09/2022

Rise co-founder Carrie Wootten set for SMPTE honour

Oscar-winning director Ang Lee who will receive SMPTEs honorary membership because of his extensive pioneering innovation in deployment of new technologies to e...

20/09/2022

Culture secretary re-examining business case' for privatising Channel 4

Michelle Donelan said the new government is making sure it agrees with the decision to privatise the broadcaster By Jenny Priestley Published: September 20, 2...

20/09/2022

TF1, M6 abandon merger

In a statement, the companies said the French Competition Authority had failed to take into account the speed and extent of the changes sweeping through the Fre...

16/09/2022

European Union proposes new rules for media company mergers

Should the Media Freedom Act make its way into law, it would require regulators to examine whether the merging companies would remain economically sustainable w...

16/09/2022

Meet the research and development technical lead

Pebbles Edmund Lewry says anyone looking to enter the media industry should treat it with the same level of importance and curiosity as the software industry, a...

15/09/2022

Watch: What caught our eye at IBC 2022

TVBEurope rounds up some of the technology that stood out to us at IBC 2022 By TVBEurope Staff Published: September 15, 2022 TVBEurope rounds up some of th...

15/09/2022

Stephen Pagliuca appointed Deltatre chairman

He is co-chair of Bain Capital as well as managing general partner and co-owner of the Boston Celtics and Italian football club Atalanta By Jenny Priestley Pu...

15/09/2022

Meet the creative director and producer

From reading comics as a kid, to directing feature films and TV projects for Disney, Hasraf HaZ' Dulull details why he loves the creative challenges offere...

14/09/2022

UK's Film and TV Charity announces tools to help freelancers with cost of living crisis

The Charity has released three tools, including a budget planner, bills prioriti...

13/09/2022

MRMC increases PTZ capabilities with acquisition of full Slidekamera product range

MRMC has already integrated its AI system Polymotion Chat with Slidekamera's...

13/09/2022

IBC celebrates successful return

Pre-booking for IBC 2023 has already seen an extra hall added to next years footprint By Jenny Priestley Published: September 13, 2022 Updated: September 14...

13/09/2022

Meet the head of studios

dock10s Andy Waters discusses the importance of mentoring, and why anyone looking to enter the media industry should be practising their skills on a mobile phon...

12/09/2022

It's about the next stage of growth for us': Gravity Media's MD on the new White City Production Centre

TVBEurope talks to Gravity Medias managing director Ed Tischler about the compan...

12/09/2022

I've never seen anything like this': Avid's Jeff Rosica on the changes going on in the media industry

Rosica was speaking at The Circle Societys Industry Leaders Panel Discussion at ...

11/09/2022

Best of Show at IBC 2022 winners announced

The winning entries in the TVBEurope category of this years Best of Show at IBC awards programme have been revealed By TVBEurope Staff Published: September 11...

11/09/2022

Spain's Atresmedia upgrades remote editing systems with Avid

The new agreement offers the broadcaster the immediate flexibility and scalability that the creative teams require to stay ahead of the shifting demand for cont...

11/09/2022

Steve Kruger joins Gravity Media as executive director of technology

By Jenny Priestley Published: September 11, 2022 Updated: September 12, 2022 Former head of technology at ITV Studios Entertainment Steve Kruger has joine...

11/09/2022

Is digitally-driven disruption in the media industry starting to slow?

Newly launched Content Connect Initiative plans to work with the media industry to explore perspectives on the evolution of the industry and the priorities for ...

09/09/2022

September edition of TVBEurope out now

Our September 2022 issue offers the latest insight on UHD and HDR capabilities, as well as a look at he restoration of early Morecambe & Wise shows By TVBEurop...

09/09/2022

Blackmagic debuts four new Ultimatte models

The Ultimatte 12 4K and Ultimatte 12 8K models feature advanced 12G-SDI connections so users can operate with current HD video formats as well as future Ultra H...

09/09/2022

Sony updates VENICE 2 motion picture camera system

The VENICE Extension System 2 is a tethered extension system that allows the camera body to detach from the actual image sensor block with no degradation in ima...

09/09/2022

Riedel acquires SimplyLive

The company said the acquisition underlines its commitment to keep bringing innovative and futureproof technologies and scalable workflows to its customers in t...

09/09/2022

Grass Valley's Louis Hernandez: We have to support the communities that supported us'

Trade shows are fighting for the rights of an industry that we all care about B...

09/09/2022

Broadcast industry supports Ukrainian women's football

The Go Fund Me page is aiming to help the team re-enter Ukraine and play in the upcoming season of the Ukrainian Women's Premier League By Jenny Priestley ...

08/09/2022

If a single picture is worth 1,000 words, how valuable is video?

Andre Torsvik, VP marketing strategy and planning at Vizrt Group, argues that for broadcasters worldwide the competitive environment is increasing and the numbe...

08/09/2022

Research: Global broadcast and media software and SaaS market worth $43.5 billion

Caretta Research has broken down the figure by category, with content connectivi...

08/09/2022

Continuing to operate during a war: Ukraine's inext keeps growing in uncertain times

TVBEurope meets inext chief commercial officer Pavel Sidorov to find out how the...

08/09/2022

Meet the technology principal

How a poster in the Student Union led Merapars Chris Birkinshaw to the media industry, and how a TV outage during election coverage made her realise how importa...

07/09/2022

Canon unveils raft of new products for broadcast, including five 4K camcorders and PTZ camera

New products include the CN8x15 IAS S E1/P1, Canon's latest Cine-Servo lens ...

07/09/2022

Tellyo helps stream 42 hours of live content from European Universities Games

The event organisers worked with the companys Stream Studio cloud production solution to create livestreams, highlights packages and clips By Jenny Priestley ...

07/09/2022

Drones, time-lapse cameras, and rebreather diving technology capture Frozen Planet II

The series involved 2188 filming days in the field across three years, with film...

07/09/2022

Michelle Donelan appointed UK's secretary of state for culture

Donelan takes over from Nadine Dorries who resigned yesterday after less than a year in the job By Jenny Priestley Published: September 7, 2022 Updated: Sep...

07/09/2022

Twickenham Film Studios' CEO Cara Sheppard joins Streamland Media

She will lead a worldwide team on delivering colour, editorial, dailies, and mastering and restoration services By Jenny Priestley Published: September 7, 202...

07/09/2022

Vizrt Group acquires HTML5 graphics platform Flowics

Flowics platform gives users simple control over the creation, integration, and playout of HTML5 graphics for fast-paced productions and digital or multi-screen...

06/09/2022

Sony unveils world's first' full-frame image sensor PTZ camera

Sony believes the FR7 will be used on reality TV, in stadiums, on drama and film production, music videos, in studios By Jenny Priestley Published: September ...

06/09/2022

Zinc Media Group announces new climate-conscious post production service

Bumblebee is described as a climate-conscious, work-anywhere post solution, that will offer dedicated upload hubs at Zincs nationwide facilities, flexible remot...

06/09/2022

Coronation Street becomes first continuing drama to use virtual production

The ITV series has employed virtual production for a special rooftop sequence set to air this week By Jenny Priestley Published: September 6, 2022 Updated: ...

06/09/2022

UK set for seventh culture secretary in five years

Both Penny Mordaunt and Kemi Badenoch have been linked to the role following Nadine Dorries resignation By Jenny Priestley Published: September 6, 2022 Upda...

06/09/2022

Cobalt Digital promotes Dr Ciro Noronha to CTO

Noronha is a founder of the RIST Forum, and currently serves as its president By Jenny Priestley Published: September 6, 2022 Noronha is a founder of the R...

06/09/2022

Former BBC CTO joins M2A Media as non-exec director

Matthew Postgate joins the company to provide independent insight and help shape its strategic direction By Jenny Priestley Published: September 6, 2022 Upd...