Displaying items by tag: Tata Communications
Telecom Review virtual panel discusses instrumental role of wholesale industry in navigating the crisis
Telecom Review, the leading global telecoms news platform, held a virtual panel on 21 July, attended by 346 participants, to discuss the latest and most pressing issues in the wholesale and capacity space. Telecom Review mobilized an impressively unique panel with representatives from Etisalat, MTN GlobalConnect, PCCW Global, Tata Communications, SES, Orange and GBI.
Following the success of its previous virtual events, the panel titled, ‘Capacity and data traffic: Enabling a seamless experience’, was held at 16:00 UAE time on July 21st.
The session was moderated by Founder of Telecom Review and CEO of Trace Media, Toni Eid, and the panelists included: Ali Amiri, Group Chief Carrier & Wholesale Officer at Etisalat; Frederic Schepens, CEO of MTN GlobalConnect; Marc Halbfinger, CEO of PCCW Global; Vaneet Mehta, AVP & Region Head- MECAA at Tata Communications; Elias Zaccack, EVP of Global Sales at SES; Cengiz Oztelcan, CEO of GBI and Emmanual Rochas, CEO, International Carriers at Orange.
The globally renowned panelists discussed the management of the sheer amount of data which was generated throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the role of the cloud in ensuring a seamless remote experience and the challenges that COVID-19 posed to the wholesale industry.
Ali Amiri, Group Chief Carrier & Wholesale Officer at Etisalat, said, "Organizations were less concerned about security and remote working because of cloud readiness. Everyone has to be cloud equipped and this showed during the pandemic. This was really quite important that people could connect from anywhere and from any device.”
Frederic Schepens, CEO of MTN GlobalConnect, stated, “When COVID-19 hit our operations, we already had more backups and strengthened networks. In certain markets, we saw 30-35% growth. Voice also increased because people were calling each other to make sure everyone was OK. As an industry, we can do a lot of good to make sure we support all these changes with a reliable, robust infrastructure and also ensure that we facilitate the digitization process.”
Marc Halbfinger, CEO of PCCW Global, said, “The one thing that I’m certain of as a result of COVID-19 is that I’m not certain of anything. The situation has made forecasting an art form. We need to consider as many possibilities as may exist. We don’t know when this issue will be resolved or how governments will deal with it. COVID-19 has demonstrated that anything that is driving new age automation is necessary.”
On the business Impact of COVID 19, Vaneet Mehta, Region Head, Tata Communications, mentioned, “In terms of wholesale segment, we had growth in data traffic, on account of OTT content consumption. But the enterprise segment saw decision making getting delayed.”
Vaneet, was still bullish on the enterprise segment, in markets like Saudi Arabia, UAE and certain select countries of Africa. He also touched upon the recent news of the recent Tata Communications local telecom license in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Elias Zaccack, EVP of Global Sales at SES, said, “Without dismissing the severity of COVID-19, we are seeing is a lot of opportunities. One of those opportunities is digitization. A lot of countries are moving a lot faster to digitization. What we have realized is just how essential satellites are to the global infrastructure.”
“For many years we’ve been talking about digitalization, we also learnt that most governments are nowhere near being digital especially during the lockdown. We suffered a lot of time wastage in terms of organizing basic processes. Also, security is currently in the back burner because people are just trying to be connected. It’s a good time for us to think about this, but the market will demand better security eventually,” commented Cengiz Oztelcan, CEO of GBI.
Emmanual Rochas, CEO, International Carriers at Orange, said, “This crisis has been dramatic in terms of human impact. It also had a massive impact on our international wholesale business. We have experienced a very strong shift in usage in terms of our businesses. Our networks have either been emptied or overloaded. We have seen an increase in domestic voice whilst international voice suffered. We had a very strong increase in public networks due to increase in consumption of entertainment.”
World’s first live 360º video trial conducted at Formula 1 Singapore Grand Prix
The world’s first test of truly live 360º video at the 2017 Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix was conducted by Formula 1 and Tata Communications on Sept. 25 to show how the F1 racing experience could be augmented for fans worldwide by enabling them to experience the show in action almost as if they were there.
To-date, any 360º video experiments in sports have been hampered by a 30-second delay between the 360º video and live TV feeds, preventing a widespread adoption of the technology. This proof-of-concept by Tata Communications and Formula 1 is the first time when the live 360º video feeds and TV broadcast have been shown in complete sync.
There were two 360º cameras at the Marina Bay Street Circuit in Singapore in the trackside and paddock to show how viewers at home could immerse themselves in the world of F1 and experience these exclusive areas through a virtual reality (VR) like environment via the Official F1 App.
For example, during a Grand Prix build-up, fans could use their tablet to access a live 360º video feed from the paddock and see the biggest names in the sport. Or, during a race, as a driver pulls into the pits for a tyre change, fans could complement the action on TV with a 360º view of everything that is happening in the pit lane in real-time.
“We’ve done this test to show how a fan could watch Lewis, Sebastian or any other drivers coming into the pits on TV, grab their tablet and get a second, completely in sync 360º view of everything going on around him while he is there - not 30 seconds after he has driven off!” said John Morrison, Chief Technical Officer, Formula 1.
“We want to unleash the full potential the F1 fan experience through the latest digital technologies,” said Sean Bratches, Managing Director, Commercial Operations, Formula 1. “Through this proof of concept, we’ve explored how live 360º video, and next VR, could transport fans from across the globe to the middle of the thrilling world of F1® and enable them to immerse themselves in each Grand Prix™ like never before.”
The live 360º video proof-of-concept follows close collaboration between Tata Communications and Formula 1 during the last five seasons to lay the foundations for the sport’s digital transformation, testing in action technologies such as UHD video and live broadcasting over the Internet (OTT), which could enable fans to experience F1 in new ways too.
“This proof of concept shows the potential of live 360º video to augment the F1 TV viewing experience and bring VR mainstream in live sports and entertainment,” said Mehul Kapadia, Managing Director of Tata Communications’ F1 Business. “Eliminating the delay in 360º video means that, for the first time, it’s possible to offer fans truly live 360º video experiences on a global scale. This will enable sports and entertainment organisations to engage with their audiences in new ways and generate new revenue streams – helping the 360º video and VR market achieve its USD $60 billion potential.”
How could IoT revolutionize the F1 Grand Prix experience?
Tata Communications, the Official Connectivity Provider to Formula 1, unveiled the second challenge of the 2017 F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize. The Internet of Things (IoT) themed challenge has been set by Formula 1, asking the F1 and technology communities to come up with ideas for solutions that could enhance the trackside experience for fans at each Grand Prix through IoT and mobile technologies, and embedded connectivity.
“We want to see how through IoT solutions we could enhance the F1 racing experience for the millions of fans who attend the Grands Prix all over the world – from before they even arrive at the track till the end of the race weekend,” said John Morrison, Chief Technical Officer of Formula 1.
“Through a mobile app connected to sensors at the track, fans could tune into customised live video feeds based on their favourite team or driver, take part in live polls and synchronised cheering, and interact more seamlessly with other fans on social media. Fans’ emotions could also be tracked to create aggregate emotion charts on large displays at the circuit, creating a more interactive, immersive and thrilling race experience.”
“F1 is the most technically advanced sport in the world, yet we’ve barely scratched the surface of what can be achieved with digital technologies,” said Ross Brawn, Managing Director of Motorsports, Formula 1. “By harnessing fans and tech enthusiasts’ brainpower and passion, we look to accelerate the digital transformation of F1, as the way people want to watch and engage with their favourite sports continues to be shaped by technology.”
The Grand Prize of the F1 Connectivity Innovation Prize is a cheque for USD $50,000. The judges pick three winners from each of the two challenges set by Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport and Formula 1. The six winners from both challenges will be awarded trips to the 2017 FORMULA 1 ETIHAD AIRWAYS ABU DHABI GRAND PRIX, where the jury will announce the Grand Prize winner.
In addition, one person from one of the three winning teams of this challenge will be given a special prize: they will get a chance to work alongside the technical team of Formula 1 at a Grand Prix of the winner’s choice for a unique behind-the-scenes experience. The closing date for this challenge is August 2nd 2017.
“Fans at home are able to enjoy an immensely rich Grand Prix experience by using technologies such as Ultra High Definition (UHD) video, complementing the live action on TV with stats and videos on formula1.com, and engaging with other fans in real-time on social media,” said Julie Woods-Moss, Tata Communications’ President and Chief Innovation and Marketing Officer.
“As Formula 1 explores opportunities to transform the sport through digital technologies, we look forward to seeing how the trackside experience could be made more captivating for F1 fans through cutting-edge IoT-enabled mobile apps and real-time data analytics.”
During the last five seasons, Tata Communications has been working closely with Formula 1 to lay the foundations for the sport’s digital transformation by harnessing the company’s global connectivity and cloud computing capabilities. Together they have tested in action technologies such as UHD video and live broadcasting over the Internet (OTT), which could enable fans to experience F1 in new ways.
Skylab chooses Tata Communications as its cloud partner to help enterprises adopt IoT
Tata Communications and Skylab, a Singapore-based technology solutions provider, recently announced a partnership to help more enterprises adopt the Internet of Things (IoT). Skylab provides advanced data harvesting, processing and delivery solutions to its customers over a scalable platform called Data Logistics Cloud (DLC). Skylab has chosen Tata Communications as its cloud partner to ensure high levels of flexibility and reliability for customers through Tata Communications’ IZO Cloud Enablement Platform and leading global network and partnerships.
“The digital disruption of enterprises continues as the user journey remains firmly at the forefront of business success. As the IoT starts to become a reality, real-time assimilation and analytics of data require superior network reliability, highly available cloud platforms, security, scalability and flexibility,” said Srinivasan CR, Senior Vice President, Global Product Management & Data Centre Services, Tata Communications. “Tata Communications’ pioneering IZO Cloud Enablement Platform harnesses our technology partnerships, global network and data centre infrastructure, making us the perfect partner to help Skylab’s customers accelerate their organisation-wide digital transformation.”
Gary Kwang, CEO, Skylab Group, said: “Skylab provides critical IoT data transmission solutions to enterprises helping them gain insights and drive proactive actions on asset optimisation and resource management. As we strengthen our data gathering and delivery platform, we have been building private advanced network infrastructure to address challenges such as latency, security and scalability. We are pleased to partner with Tata Communications to address our growing need for higher levels of system and network availability, and cost-effective storage.”
The partnership comes on the heels of successful deployments of Skylab’s solutions in the region, notably for customer Sunseap’s solar farm projects across Southeast Asia. Frank Phuan, Co-founder and CEO, Sunseap Group, said: "Sunseap provides full spectrum clean energy solutions. We require an innovative approach to monitoring our solar systems performance and reliably reporting under energy regulations. We partnered with Skylab to leverage their technological capabilities and strong partnerships to drive Integrated Energy and Networks Operation Control Center with real-time performance dashboard and accurate reporting."
Tata Communications, Formula One and Sky test UHD broadcasting at 2016 Singapore Grand Prix
Tata Communications, the official connectivity provider of Formula 1, Formula One Management, and Sky have tested in action live Ultra High Definition (UHD) broadcasting at the 2016 Formula 1 Singapore Airlines Singapore Grand Prix. Following this first ever end-to-end broadcast of an F1 race in UHD, Sky will show all races of the 2017 season in UHD.
The successful proof of concept involved the installation of multiple state-of-the-art UHD cameras at the Singapore circuit. The footage from these was mixed in the FOM Broadcast Centre onsite, and the UHD output distributed live to Sky’s HQ in Osterley in the UK using Tata Communications’ Video Connect service. Video Connect enables broadcasters to deliver live video feeds over the world’s largest wholly-owned subsea fibre network, ensuring the highest quality experience for viewers.
“This proof of concept with Sky and Tata Communications demonstrates our ongoing commitment to make F1 the ultimate sports experience by harnessing the power of cutting-edge broadcasting technologies,” said John Morrison, Chief Technical Officer of Formula One Management.
“Delivering the race action seamlessly in UHD from any Grand Prix location to homes requires superfast, reliable connectivity on a global scale,” said Mehul Kapadia, Managing Director of F1 Business at Tata Communications. “And, other game-changing technologies like virtual reality will rely on ubiquitous, superfast connectivity too. As the break-neck speed of technology innovation continues, we’ll work with Formula One Management to enable fans to experience the exhilarating world of F1 in new ways.”
“We pride ourselves on being an extremely forward-thinking F1 broadcaster with a special focus on innovation,” said Keith Lane, Director of Operations at Sky. “UHD offers four times higher resolution than HD, making F1 a more powerful, immersive experience for fans than ever before. The success of this proof of concept in Singapore shows that we’re on track to show every race live in UHD next season using our next-generation Sky Q home entertainment service, and to continue to give our customers the action-packed F1 experiences that they crave.”
The UHD test in Singapore follows a series of other ambitious proof of concepts by Tata Communications and Formula One Management around live Over the Top content delivery and 4K broadcasting.
Tata Communications selected by Sky to broadcast Grand Prix live across the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy
Tata Communications, the official connectivity provider of Formula 1, recently announced that it has been selected by Sky to deliver the live broadcast feeds of all 21 Grand Prix starting with the 2016 FIA Formula One World Championship season over its global superfast fibre network – the world’s only wholly-owned fibre network encircling the globe.
The deal, which is part of Sky’s strategy to create Europe’s leading entertainment company following its acquisition of Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland, will ensure a seamless race experience for viewers in the UK, Ireland, Germany, Austria and Italy, regardless of Grand Prix location.
All video feeds of the 2016 FIA Formula One World Championship season will be distributed live in high-definition to Sky viewers using Tata Communications’ Video Connect service. Sky teams based in the UK, Germany and Italy will work in close collaboration with Tata Communications’ experts at race tracks and its remote operations teams, ensuring a seamless delivery of each race to people at home.
Video Connect enables broadcasters to deliver live video feeds from anywhere in the world over Tata Communications’ IP network, with connectivity to over 240 countries and territories. Underpinned by the world’s largest wholly-owned subsea fibre network, it ensures the highest quality viewing experience for F1 fans.
“The integration of our operations in Europe is focused on accelerating innovation and serving our viewers better – and Tata Communications’ global fibre network will help us do just that,” says Keith Lane, director of operations at Sky.
“It’s crucial that we’re able to bring our viewers action-packed, high-quality F1 racing experiences from Grand Prix around the world. And, as the way people experience F1 is constantly evolving thanks to technological advances that rely on superfast connectivity, there is scope for us to tap into Tata Communications’ global fibre network as we continue to drive innovation in F1 broadcasting.”
“With half a billion viewers globally, F1 is the world’s most popular annual sporting series – but with races in locations as diverse as the streets of Singapore, the hills of São Paulo and the deserts of Abu Dhabi, it is also a hugely challenging environment for broadcasters,” says Mehul Kapadia, managing director of F1 business at Tata Communications.
“Bringing fans brilliant, glitch-free viewing experiences requires more than just reliable, superfast connectivity on a global scale. As fans increasingly want to be part of the action unfolding on the track, we look forward to exploring future game-changing technologies with Sky to drive innovation in F1 broadcasting.”
The deal with Sky builds on Tata Communications’ expertise in F1 content delivery and highlights the company’s central role in the F1 ecosystem, working in close partnership with Formula One Management, The MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS Formula One Team, and many leading F1 broadcasters.
Last year, the company was also chosen by Formula One Management to provide broadcast services globally for the GP2, GP3 and Porsche Supercup racing series.
“This deal cements Tata Communications’ position as a world-class media services provider,” says Rangu Salgame, chief executive officer of Tata Communications’ Growth Ventures and Service Provider Group.
“Our success lies in our razor-sharp focus on innovation, delivering cutting-edge services for live sports and entertainment, and harnessing our global superfast fibre network to usher in a new era in the media industry.”