BBC Wales Innovation Lounge Visit

BBC Wales Innovation Lounge Visit

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By Chris Johnson (Journalism student, University of South Wales),
Monday, 9th February 2015
Innovation Lounge equipment
Innovation Lounge equipment

Innovation! Innovation! Innovation!

Iain Tweedale

Adapt, survive and flourish.  That was the message for television producers from Iain Tweedale (right), the Head of Interactive and Learning at BBC Wales.  The BBC may be wary of future competition from video-on-demand services such as Netflix but Iain said, "Our competitors in the future are not necessarily going to be primarily ITV and so on, it's going to be Google, Netflix, Amazon, those are our competitors and we have to be in that space".

Iain was speaking at RTS Wales's 'Keeping up with the Kids' event at BBC Wales on the 5th February, where guests learned about the ever-changing broadcast environment and what the BBC is doing to ensure it stays a central part of it.

The audience of students, producers, trainees, and RTS members were shown the latest innovations in multi-format production, mobile applications, social media and the new 'MyBBC' app.  The app, which will work similarly to Netflix and Amazon, uses recommendations and watch history to generate personalised media for the user and is expected to be launched very soon.

Michael SurcombeGuests were also told about additional services on smart phones and social media for programmes like Doctor Who.  With a following of over 1.2 million on Twitter, teams are now producing content for the programme even when it is off-air to keep audiences engaged with the brand.  However, while believing the BBC is heading in the right direction, Iain was quick to acknowledge the rate at which technology is growing and the challenges that now face broadcasters.

"What we're seeing is that the speed is increasing, the rate of change is increasing and we can't keep up with it," he said.  "What we need to do is to innovate fast, and then not worry about stuff if it doesn't quite work," he added.

Following the presentation, guests were given a demonstration of the latest technology being used at BBC Wales by Michael Surcombe (left), who discussed the growing use of drones, new live broadcasting kit and innovations in sound technology.

See also our report of Tim Hartley's recent talk, Technology and TV - A threat to traditional viewing or a challenge to the Industry?


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