Quantel unveils remote workflow production platform

Quantel (www.quantel.com/) has launched QTube, a virtual production platform that leverages IP infrastructures to enable creative people using the company's Enterprise sQ servers to work collaboratively from anywhere in the world. With QTube, media assets can be securely accessed from the server within seconds from anywhere there's an Internet connection.

The company said that QTube is not just a single technology. It's a combination of the latest off-the-shelf IT (hardware and software) components and Quantel's FrameMagic technology. It uses Microsoft Smooth Streaming adaptive bit rate technology to maintain high image quality on a second-by-second basis at all times. The Virtual Quantel File System (VQFS) enables instant access to the content via Smooth Streaming.

QTube offers the ability to perform metadata editing, quality downloads and frame-accurate editing using files accessed over the Internet. It can be used to handle a variety of project types, in all stages, from a work in progress to finished clips, with low latency and full security thanks to Microsoft IIS authentication and SSL encryption. QTube works with SD and HD, and is completely scalable, supporting as many users as required.

The QTube system is made up of three main components: the QTube Browser, a Microsoft Silverlight-based viewer, enabling the user to search the Quantel Enterprise sQ system and find, view and edit metadata on content remotely — ideal for producer/director review; QTube Edit software, which is an Internet-enabled version of the standard Enterprise sQ desktop editor; and QTube Transformer, the server that provides the interface between the sQ system and the QTube clients. It handles security, encryption and on-the-fly file manipulation needed to deliver a smooth user experience over the Internet.

QTube also has an open API, supporting both Microsoft Smooth Streaming and Apple Live Streaming. At NAB, Quantel showed Apple iPads accessing remote content using this API.

QTube deliveries will begin in May. Systems are being beta tested with broadcasters around the world.

Ray Cross, Quantel CEO, said the company has shown QTube to more than 300 broadcasters around the world "and the reaction has been fantastic," he said. "The frontline applications such as remote viewing and editing have been readily understood with many broadcasters immediately beginning to plan how QTube can streamline their workflows and save money and time."

He said QTube heralds a change for broadcasting that is as significant as the introduction of the mobile phone. "With QTube you stay connected to your content when you are out of the office; you are never out of touch," he said.