Today's broadcasters are reaching millions of viewers with a whole gamut of content from linear television, pay-per view, on-demand to streaming.

They are tasked with delivering thousands of hours of high quality content, while meeting regulatory requirements on multiple platforms such as televisions, web and mobile devices. Broadcasters have to ensure high quality across all the variants that consumers are digesting these days.

Playout is a term for the transmission of radio or TV channels from the broadcaster into broadcast networks that delivers the content to the audience.

Quality control (QC) operations are evolving. A decade ago, QC was strictly a manual-based process. In more recent years, broadcasters have relied on file-based, automated QC workflows to speed up operations and ensure the accuracy of video and audio content.

Automated QC

Automated QC can alleviate these day to day challenges for broadcasters and TV networks. The system allows users to not just QC outgoing content but also incoming content, from various providers prior to transcoding them into various variants. It can automatically ensure the content is played back smoothly on broadcaster specific set top boxes checking for standards compliance, frame rates, bit rates, resolution, scan type, scan order, VOD compliance, loudness compliance, as well as checking for adaptive bit rate content such as smooth streaming, Apple HLS either pre- or post-encryption. BATON can easily be configured using test plans to meet each user's unique and custom requirements. Users can setup different test plans for VOD, IPTV and mobile & web streaming, whilst easily integrating into the workflow using smart folders or workflow solutions.

Automated QC solutions are an essential part of file-based workflows. They have the capability to check content for conformance, metadata, and different kinds of audio video quality issues. However, it’s not a perfect or complete process. A few issues cannot be detected by automated QC solutions. Moreover, if detection is supported, it is not fully accurate.

BATON hybrid QC platform, enables broadcast operators to perform auto and manual QC checks in parallel from a single platform. While the biggest advantage of this approach is accuracy, simplicity is also a factor, as a broadcast facility's entire QC policy can be implemented in a single solution.