Connectivity and Communication: Assessing the Advantages of Bonded Cellular Technology

“Bonded cell technology allows us to cover much more news than ever before,” says Scotty Smith, an NBC affiliate production manager.
Author:
Publish date:

With its ability to connect crews with their stations via low-cost cellular, Ethernet or Wi-Fi networks, bonded cellular transmission technology has made live remotes more accessible and affordable.

“Bonded cell technology has allowed us to economically expand our Montana stations’ coverage to encompass the entire state, rather than being limited to a few larger urban areas,” says Neal Boling, station manager of Spokane, Wash.-based NBC affiliate KHQ-TV. “Thanks to our LiveU bonded cell transmitters, our Wake Up Montana morning show has live content from all of them every day.”

The biggest appeal of bonded cell technology is the low-cost reach it provides to crews. “With our Comrex units, which connect via 4G to Verizon, we can do live news shoots all over San Francisco,” says Arnie Loleng, operations manager for Ohlone TV, a closed circuit/streaming TV channel operated by Fremont, Calif.-based Ohlone College’s broadcasting facility.

Image placeholder title

KHQ-TV uses LiveU bonded cell transmitters for live remotes on its Wake Up Montana morning show.

KTUU-TV, the NBC affiliate in Anchorage, Alaska, uses a mix of Comrex, Dejero and LiveU bonded cellular technology. “Since cellular coverage is largely limited to urban areas, we use bonded cell connected via Ethernet or Wi-Fi to send back live shots from remote communities,” says Scotty Smith, KTUU’s production manager. “This allows us to do a far better job of covering Alaska live than we were able to do before.”

Burnsville Community TV in Burnsville, Minn., connects a Comrex bonded cell unit to its mobile production truck: “We shoot a lot of high school football games,” says Jay Golden, television production specialist for BCTV. “The Comrex allows us to send a switched live feed to our headend as a backup to our local cable TV system.”

Image placeholder title

Alaska’s KTUU-TV uses Dejero solutions like the LIVE+ GoBox mobile transmitter, which is shown here in use at Network Ten Australia.

Bonded cellular is also recognized for its ease of use. Compared to the complexities of connecting microwave and satellite trucks, “bonded cell is pretty much plug-and-play, even when you are doing long-distance live shots, as we did using LiveU from San Francisco to our station, WOIO [CBS], in Cleveland during the 2015 NBA Finals,” says Bob Maupin, regional director of technology for Raycom Media. “Our people were pretty much able to shoot and broadcast from anywhere within the arena.”

Another advantage is that the low cost of bonded cell transmission compared to satellite and microwave allows smaller stations to compete with deeper-pocketed rivals. A case in point: South Florida’s América TeVé relies on its AVIWEST bonded cell transmitters to help produce eight hours of live news daily. “When it comes to covering local news, AVIWEST lets us take on the big networks and be on the same page,” says Gerd Rieger, senior engineering manager for the Miami-based independent Spanish language TV station.

“It has just changed and enhanced the way we do live remotes,” says Raycom’s Maupin. “Bonded cell doesn’t fit every application, but it fits the majority of them at a lower price and with much simpler technical requirements than microwave or satellite.”

Image placeholder title

AVIWEST’s DMNG PRO video uplink solution is available in a backpack configuration.

“The biggest advantage of bonded cell is that you can get your people to many more locations than you could with the transmission alternatives, simply because you can afford to buy and deploy more units,” says Jim Ocon, vice president of engineering for the Dallas/Ft. Worth FOX affiliate. “The tradeoff, of course, is that you are sharing your bandwidth with other cellular users.”

“Bonded cell technology allows us to cover much more news than ever before,” notes Smith. “At the same time, it does so at a price that fits our budget.

Related

More than 55 of the 2018 Fall Television and Streaming Series Rely on Blackmagic Design

More than 55 of the 2018 Fall Television and Streaming Series Rely on Blackmagic Design

Blackmagic Design today announced that the company’s production and post products were used to complete many of the fall 2018 season’s new and returning television shows and streaming series. More than 55 shows rely on Blackmagic Design’s digital film cameras; Fusion visual effects (VFX), compositing, 3D and motion graphics software; and DaVinci Resolve editing, color correction, VFX and digital audio software; as well as its switchers, routers, monitors and capture and playback devices.

Luxul_AMS-1208P

Jingle All the Way: Luxul's XMS-1208P Managed Gigabit Switch is Available for All CI Integrators this Holiday Season

Luxul, the leading innovator of IP networking solutions for AV integrators, today announced that it's giving CI integrators the gift of enterprise-level performance at affordable price points this holiday season. It doesn't matter if they've been naughty or nice, the company's XMS-1208P 12-port/18 PoE+ managed Gigabit switch — that delivers high-speed performance while enabling simple network expansion — is now available for all. And to ring in the new year, Luxul will begin shipping its AMS-1816P 18-port/16 PoE+ L2/L3 managed Gigabit switch in early January.

HoverCam_VV1

HoverCam Transforms Classrooms Fit for Future-Ready Students at Val Verde USD

HoverCam, an innovative technology leader in the digital education market, announced that Val Verde Unified School District (USD) in Parris, California, successfully installed HoverCam's Pilot digital teaching stations and CenterStage interactive flat panels (IFPs) in new STEM labs in the elementary schools, with plans for an eventual rollout to the district's middle and high schools. As part of the district's goal to create future-ready students, Val Verde USD chose HoverCam digital education solutions to address the rising challenge of updating classrooms and introducing curriculum with advanced systems that will prepare students for a rapidly changing career landscape.

ScreenShot2018-12-11at2.41.29PM.144822

The Sigma Holiday Sale Is Back!

Nothing makes gift giving as enjoyable as special prices on award-winning Sigma lenses and accessories; get the lens you’ve always craved or surprise a fellow shooter with the perfect present.

Riedel-Ruptly-Vans-3

Global News Agency Ruptly Relies on Riedel's MediorNet and Artist on Board New OB and DSNG Vehicles

Riedel's MediorNet real-time media network and Artist digital matrix intercom are providing the decentralized and redundant signal routing and communications backbone on board two all-new, state-of-the-art OB vehicles for Ruptly, a Berlin-based international news agency. Qvest Media, a world-leading system architect and integrator for the broadcast and media industries, designed and built the new broadcast van and DSNG vehicle.