From the outset of the project, it was essential that the MPAT tool would not just be used in the testing labs, but that pilots would take place in a broadcast environment under real production conditions.
While the specifics of the pilots couldn’t be foreseen when the project was planned, as the project has no influence on broadcast schedules, the opportunity arose to have an early pilot providing an HbbTV application for the Band Camp Berlin series.
Band Camp Berlin is was a daily documentary soap, broadcast on KI.KA, Germany’s nationwide public service TV channel for children. It aired from 21 November to 22 December 2016. (It will be re-broadcast in Summer 2017) Five 17 year olds were cast to form a band, compose their own music, create their own style and take their newly-formed band on stage.
A supporting HbbTV application was created, which covered, showcased and tested a wide range of the features provided by MPAT, including a traditional “view previous episodes” and interview archive, a connected slide flow application sequentially guiding viewers through the stages of creating the band’s first music video (from the choice of the song, the planning and selection of their outfits, to setting up the stage, to the actual shoot of the music clip) and special features like a sing and play “karaoke” feature, as well as the first public 360° video playout for Smart TVs.)
Following the successful first pilot, rbb started a second pilot.
“Brandenburg Aktuell” is a daily regional magazine, produced and broadcast by rbb. It provides news and information about events in the state of Brandenburg. It was first broadcast on May, 2nd 1992.
For the 25th anniversary of the magazine, a special HbbTV application was launched, allowing viewers to watch supplementary video material, such as the first episode of “Brandenburg Aktuell”, behind the scenes videos and highlights from the 25 year run. The application was promoted as part of the regular magazine broadcast, providing a link between the TV programme and the additional material.
As an MPAT use case, it is a good example for the value of the MPAT tool. While a 25th anniversary of a regional magazine is a success for a broadcaster, it is usually not considered a significantly large event to justify the creation of a specific application. The comparatively low cost and low effort due to producing the application with MPAT enabled this.
In the third pilot rbb is testing a SmartTV application for Täter – Opfer – Polizei (Culprit – Victim – Police), a magazine broadcast twice a week covering real crimes, including crime prevention advice and the police requests to the public for help in finding suspects and information about criminal activities. The application which offers video clips and information from the TV program was launched on 24 May and will remain on air until early June. Following a summer hiatus the application will hopefully become a constant addition to the series when it returns in autumn.