HBO partnered with Facebook to promote their newest sci-fi thriller, Westworld, in the form of a web show streamed directly to Facebook Live. The show featured 4 main actors from the show as well as its creators Jonathan Nolan and Lisa Joy answering questions from the host and audience members engaging in the livestream comments.
Technical production was managed by Soul Kitchen Creative (SKC), a production company based in Brooklyn, New York. To maintain a healthy stream with no hiccups in connection, SKC’s founder/director Michael Scalere decided to use cellular bonding to ensure Internet connections stayed up. To accomplish this, he chose Teradek’s Bond II.
Four Canon 5D digital cameras sent 720p video and audio feeds to a Blackmagic Atem 2 M/E 4K production switcher. The switcher then sent a feed to the Bond II which combined 4 USB 4G dongles (2 AT&T and 2 Verizon) and an Ethernet connection to transmit the feed directly to Westworld’s Facebook Page. Different carriers were used for extra security in case one carrier dropped.
Teradek Bond II
Bond II’s bandwidth redundancy and automatic failover provided the robust solution SKC needed to meet the demands of both Facebook and HBO. Scalere and his crew delivered a flawless stream which gathered over 325k views over 34 minutes.
“Facebook is trying to sell their live platform. If the stream were to drop during broadcast, it would be a disaster for everyone. The Bond II made sure no connections were dropped and helped us to stream with confidence,” said Michael Scalere.