Inmarsat has received media industry recognition for its Broadband Global Area Network (BGAN) services thanks to CNN winning the top prize at the influential IBC Innovation Awards. The award was presented for the company's innovative digital newsgathering system, which is powered by BGAN.
The CNN-led team won both the IBC Innovation Award for Content Creation and the Judges' Award at the ceremony in Amsterdam.
CNN's digital newsgathering (DNG) solution is based on combining highly-portable video technology with the small, lightweight BGAN units for IP-based transmission. It enables immediate live and video FTP submission, realtime content monitoring, editing, and simultaneous voice and data communication. Journalists, able to carry all the equipment in a single backpack, filed hundreds of stories from the moment the DNG solution went live during the Israeli-Hezbollah conflict in July 2006.
In its award submission, senior CNN journalists and executives explained that BGAN is now an essential tool for any news crew working in the region.
Michael Butler, president and chief operating officer for Inmarsat, said: "We worked extremely closely with CNN throughout the development of BGAN, from the initial design stage to the testing and commercial roll-out. It was their willingness to work together, and the effort they put into our collaborative partnership, that resulted in the polished solution that BGAN delivers today. CNN's DNG solution makes full use of the unique benefits of BGAN, and is the perfect showcase for the attributes and ability of the service."
CNN harnessed the expertise of a range of Inmarsat partners including BGAN terminal manufacturer Hughes Network Systems, distribution partner Vizada and solutions provider Streambox. The team also included Apple, Galaxy-1 Communications and L-3 Global Communications Solutions.