Weber Shandwick Chooses Facilis TerraBlock for Cutting Edge 4K, VR/360 Workflows

Hybrid storage delivers highest performance and greater capacity with both SSD and traditional hard disks
Publish date:

HUDSON, MA (October 19th, 2017)Facilis, a leading international supplier of cost-effective, high performance shared storage solutions for collaborative media production networks today announced that Weber Shandwick’s Boston office is using Facilis TerraBlock storage for cutting edge 4K and VR/360 workflows. Part of the Interpublic Group, Weber Shandwick is a leading global communications agency in 79 cities across 34 countries, with a network extending to 127 cities in 81 countries. The firm’s diverse team of strategists, analysts, producers, designers, developers and campaign activators have won the most prestigious awards in the world for innovative, creative approaches and impactful work. They work for some of the leading brands and organizations worldwide on projects ranging from brand anthems, docu-narrative storytelling, social-focused content, 360-degree VR video, to live-streaming with their proprietary GoLive technology.

In the Boston office, one of the primary focuses has been growing their video practice and capabilities over the last five years. “When we first started, we had editors working on client projects which resided on bare hard drives that would just sit on a shelf in each editor’s office,” said Victor Oates, Technical Site Lead, CMG Information Technology, Boston. CMGGRP, also owned by Interpublic Group, provides IT resources for Weber Shandwick. “If we needed editors to collaborate on the same project, we would have to spend hours copying footage to duplicate hard drives, so that each editor could have a copy of the project and its files to work on.”

The older workflow created a lot of barriers and problems for the team, the biggest of which was spending large amounts of time keeping projects and hard drives in sync, as well as tracking who had the latest version of every edit. If an editor wasn’t in the office, it was difficult to keep track of which specific hard drive each project lived on, so that other editors could make changes. The team was looking for a solution that would mitigate all of these issues, while also improving the speed/efficacy of every editor.

“After a thorough vetting of competing systems, we found Facilis to be the most cost-efficient system that could deliver the performance we wanted. We also found Facilis’ support team to be incredibly solid,” said Oates. “Over the years, they have had a relatively low turnover which is a huge plus for us, as not only it tells us that people like working there but it also means that our IT professionals have been able to build a relationship with the Facilis techs which has been very helpful.”

Using the Facilis TerraBlock shared storage network, all editors can access the same footage simultaneously and it provides a central repository of the latest versions to everyone, so there is less versioning and copies of media being stored. “We started with a 12TB 24EX system, and then in the last year we upgraded to a new Hybrid24 System with 136TB of total space,” said Oates. “The server has 128TB of traditional “spinning disks” giving us an approximately 11x increase in data storage. With the Hybrid24 system, we also have an additional 8TB of fast SSD storage dedicated purely to our 4K/VR/360 jobs. The SSDs lets us edit 4K footage in real-time, which is a great feature and saves us hours. The Hybrid24 system was the same price as what competitors were asking for non-hybrid smaller units. The ability to edit 4K footage more efficiently made this an easy sell to the organization.”

The Weber Shandwick team is continually on the cutting edge and pushing the boundaries of their creative work, which places high demands on their tools and infrastructure. They’ve been working on high-bandwidth 4K projects for the last couple of years, exploring VR with 360-degree video, and utilizing on-site, same-day video edits that help brands take advantage of short news cycles in a timely manner. The team moves very fast, and they expect their editing systems to keep up.

“Since we brought a Facilis system on board, we have increased our speed and quality of our work immeasurably. A project that in 2011-2013 was taking us 15 days or so to take from start to final export, is now being completed in approximately 7-10 days,” says Oates. “Our speed has increased, we are more flexible in workflows, and able to take on more projects than ever before. Additionally, we are able to take our projects to a higher quality than ever before, as the right people can now collaborate together on projects.”



Black Box Radian Flex Software-Based Video Wall Platform Earns ISE Best of Show Award

Black Box, an industry-leading provider of pro AV connectivity and signal distribution systems, today announced that the company's Radian Flex software-based video wall platform won an ISE Best of Show Award from AV Technology Europe, a Future Publishing magazine. Of the more than 1,000 exhibitors at ISE 2019, only 15 — including Black Box with Radian Flex — earned this award, which recognizes achievements and innovations in product and service development.


Luxul to Bring Reliability and High Performance to IBS 2019 With Latest Networking Solutions for the Smart Home

Luxul, the leading innovator of IP networking solutions for AV integrators, today announced its technology line-up for the NAHB International Builders' Show (IBS), taking place February 19-21 in Las Vegas. In the Legrand booth SU614, the company will exhibit a wide range of solutions for home builders that deliver reliable, high-performance networks in smart homes, including Gigabit switches; the next generation of wireless controller technology; indoor and outdoor wireless access points (APs); wired and wireless routers; intelligent network power distribution units (PDU); and the Wi-Fi Assurance Program exclusively for builders.


HoverCam's Pilot Series and ClassFusion Learning Platform Land Big Wins at TCEA 2019

HoverCam, a leader in innovative, interactive, and engaging education solutions, announced that the company's digital classroom solutions received three major honors from Tech & Learning at the recent Texas Computer Education Association (TCEA) 2019 Conference in San Antonio. At the show, HoverCam's Pilot 3 digital teaching station received the Award of Excellence in the District category, while the company's new Pilot X podium and ClassFusion software platform both earned Best of Show honors. The awards were presented on Feb. 6 at a special ceremony held at Casa Rio restaurant in San Antonio.


College Football Playoff Uses Veritone's AI and Digital Asset Management Solutions to Enable Richer Media Coverage

Veritone Inc. (Nasdaq: VERI), the creator of the world's first operating system for artificial intelligence, aiWARE™, today announced that the College Football Playoff (CFP) leveraged an expanded deployment of Veritone solutions and services for the 2019 CFP National Championship to give members of the media even faster and richer access to its content resources. In addition to the CFP's Digital Media Hub, a white-label digital asset management portal from Veritone, the CFP also utilized Veritone's Live Event Services and aiWARE artificial intelligence platform for the first time. With aiWARE, the CFP was able to apply artificial intelligence to video footage and still images of press conferences, interviews and other Media Day events to produce transcriptions, automated facial recognition of players and coaches, logo identification, and other tasks enabling expedited and enhanced coverage of the 2019 College Football Playoff National Championship. For the first time, the CFP was able to make Media Day press conference clips and images available for search and immediate download within minutes of delivery. Following the success of this deployment, CFP has renewed its agreement with Veritone through the 2020 championship game in New Orleans.