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Education HE / FE

Planet DV has supplied broadcast video and media streaming technologies into higher and further education for many years. By combining technologies from leading manufacturers in the industry with our own products and expertise, we provide a unique resource covering the complete spectrum of creative media, from content acquisition and re-purposing, right through to archiving and distribution. The vast majority of our educational clients are further education colleges and higher education institutions and we excel at working with these clients to ensure that the products we develop and specify for them and the creative spaces that we plan are genuinely relevant to their teaching and learning needs. It is Planet DV’s experience in both the broadcast video and education sectors that give us a unique perspective that our HE and FE customers benefit from. We have always been complimented on our ability to blend complex technology with teaching and learning needs to provide a seamless workflow. In many instances, this unique ability has delivered a competitive edge, resulting in us being awarded a number of recent high profile and high value contracts.

Within the last twelve months Planet DV has won and commissioned two large television studio contracts with the higher and further education market. The first was a completely new HD TV studio as part of a new building for the new University Centre Grimsby. This had to be a functional studio for teaching broadcast disciplines as well as having the ‘wow’ factor to compliment their building’s contemporary style. It comprised two physical studios, one being a green screen studio with a motion capture facility and the second a soft studio in the style of a breakfast news facility. Both studios are controlled by one control room/gallery. Having two physical studios meant the cabling and infrastructure had to be meticulously planned and commissioned. Lee Howard their Technical Development Manager told us that what had impressed him most about Planet DV was that we had looked at the installation from a teaching and learning perspective and not just a broadcast perspective.

Another recent project was carried out at Leeds Trinity University College. Leeds Trinity is a member of the North Eastern University Purchasing Consortium (NEUPC) and in spring 2011, they issued a tender opportunity to deliver digital tapeless video production and to upgrade their existing TV studio to HD. The objective of the project was the decommissioning and replacing of the legacy video tape based acquisition and storage equipment traditionally used for video production by the Media Centre. The remit was to specify, supply and install a digital acquisition, storage, editing and delivery solution plus a full HD infrastructure upgrade to the existing TV studio, providing seamless integration and facilitating a transparent and intuitive workflow for the users. Attention to detail, adherence to the customer’s specification, a comprehensive support package and competitive pricing landed Planet DV this contract. It also meant that we were made one of 5 official suppliers to the North Eastern Universities Purchasing Consortium (NEUPC) Broadcast Video Framework.

We have also been involved in a large number of media streaming, IPTV and Lecture Capture projects within the HE and FE sector during recent years and have deployed solutions nationwide as well as in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. We work with our clients on their media streaming and content management projects to ensure that we fulfill their current requirements and continue to develop our product in line with their future requirements and needs. We have a continually ongoing development schedule with our Planet eStream suite of products and have recently added subtitle support, streaming to mobile devices, digital signage, iOS support and video upload applications for android and iOS over Wi-Fi or 3G. You can see some of our recent case studies here.

A particular project involving media streaming and lecture capture was carried out at Bolton Community College. They had a vision for capturing lectures when planning their £70 million new build and Paul McKean Learning Resources and ILT Development Manager trialed Planet eStream as a potential contender for this application. Having completed a successful trial, the core product along with a large number of Lecture Capture Encoders were installed at Bolton CC during the winter of 2010. This project has since expanded over time as further lecture theatre installations have now been implemented. The lecture capture facilities enable tutors to broadcast ‘live’ and record demonstrations, presentations and important excerpts of lessons. Planet eStream then facilitates the availability of this material to learners via the college’s Virtual Learning Environ-ment (VLE). This technology enables tutors to provide up to date and relevant learning resources which stu-dents can access from home as well as from inside college. This enables them to prepare in advance for lessons catch up on missed sessions and progress at their own pace supporting personalised learning.

We have also been involved in an ongoing media streaming, archiving and off air recording project at the Uni-versity for the Creative Arts. The university uses our Planet eStream product primarily for the creation of a 24/7 on demand teaching and learning resource for students and lecturers. UCA staff have captured free to air television and radio broadcasts using the Planet eStream Freeview Scheduler and then archived with custom-izable meta data fields to the central Planet eStream database for on demand access, both on campus and remotely. They are now also working on digitising their extensive physical collection of material to the Planet eStream database for ease of access and to ensure future preservation. Planet DV software developers have worked closely with the UCA library team and the suppliers of their library cataloguing system, SirsiDynix, helping to integrate the data from Planet eStream into the SirsiDynix Enterprise system, to facilitate centralised access for all of their library material.

Planet DV offer a wealth of expertise and experience in the areas of broadcast video and media streaming and distribution, we understand the challenges that our educational clients face and are therefore a perfect video technology partner for Further Education Colleges and Higher Education Institutions.