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Qvest Media delivers Alarab news channel for the MENA region

Qvest Media has completed its delivery and implementation of all production, broadcast and distribution facilities for the Arab region's latest breaking-news channel, Alarab.

Qvest Media has completed its delivery and implementation of all production, broadcast and distribution facilities for the Arab region’s latest breaking-news channel, Alarab.

Due to go live later this year, Alarab will deliver a completely fresh style of presenting news from around the world that matters most to those living and working in the Middle East and North Africa. Based in Bahrain’s capital, Manama, the all-Arabic channel will include extensive news programming as well as regular news roundups and business information in association with Bloomberg.

Qvest Media managed all aspects of the project including design, planning and technical integration. The scope includes two studios with affiliated control rooms as well as the latest technologies for monitoring, video and graphics editing and editorial processes.

The project is one of the most advanced Qvest Media has delivered and will help Alarab deliver on its promise of creating a fresh style of programming for a new generation of viewers. End-to-end file-based workflows, a high level of automation for all production processes, a centralised media asset management system across all areas of production, as well as HDTV distribution for satellite, multi-platform live streaming and an IPTV solution are just a few of the key features that Qvest Media has planned and integrated.

“We want to change the way people think about news broadcasting,” said Jamal Khashoggi (pictured), general manager, Alarab TV. “A fundamental part of that is our delivery infrastructure and the solution delivered by Qvest Media will be a key part in our success.”

“We provide a highly future-oriented media infrastructure to Alarab for seamless management between all fields of news production,” added Peter Noethen, managing director of Qvest Media. “We take into account the most modern forms for IP-based content aggregation and multiple ways for broadcasting such as satellite and online. This helps Alarab to maximise the efficiency of news production and distribution.”

The solution features products and systems from international manufacturers. For example, the latest generation of scalable Avid ISIS 7500, Avid Interplay media asset management and iNews is installed for file-based production purposes and deeply integrated with a redundant central storage system from EMC². Realtime 3D graphics rendering and channel branding will be performed using technology from Vizrt.

The Alarab installation will be the first Viz Mosart installation which interlaces directly with Avid Interplay. Viz Mosart newsroom automation will cover the channel’s two studios. The larger studio will be used for 24-hours rolling news live broadcast, and the Viz Mosart studio automation will control equipment from Sony, Calrec, Avid, Vinten Radamec Robotics and Vizrt graphics, among others using preconfigured templates. In addition, a Viz Mosart system will integrate closely with Avid iNews as well as with the LSB Virtual Studio Management (VSM) switching and management system.

The second studio will be used to produce news features and packages to insert into the rolling news output, where Viz Mosart will interlace with the Avid Airspeed 5000 editing environment and Vizrt graphics., a leader in social TV solutions, will be used for the station’s social media output. With the integration between Vizrt and, Alarab will have the tools to embrace user-generated social content and integrate it easily and flexibly within Vizrt graphics and multiplatform distribution workflows. To preview, moderate and configure all incoming data feeds, an Astucemedia Data Platform will be used. It will work with the Vizrt graphics system to provide producers and template editors with a graphical way to browse and select data content, preview stock charts, monitor and approve social media feeds.

Operators, technical and editorial staff of Alarab are currently undergoing the final stage of training delivered by Qvest Media experts. The channel is scheduled to begin broadcasting in Q4 2014.

This story also appears on IBC’s Content Everywhere.