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Viva Las Vegas: NAB 2013

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With over 1,600 exhibiting companies and more than 840,000 square feet of floor space, this year's show in Las Vegas will cement NAB as one of the industry's most important events.

It goes without saying that NAB is among the 10 largest trade shows in North America, as well as being the world's largest trade show for the media and entertainment sector. Last year, NAB saw over 91,000 attendees alone.

The appeal of NAB stretches beyond the USA. Nearly 30,000 international visitors are expected to make an appearance from over 150 countries, making up roughly 30% of the total attendance.

The show will host 60 international delegations, including Sri Lanka, Ukraine, Uruguay and Czech Republic, along with many first-time delegations from countries including Croatia, Israel, Malaysia and Norway.

There will be almost 600 international exhibitors, with pavilions from Belgium, Brazil, France, Germany, Korea and the UK, to name a few.

159 first-time exhibitors are expected to appear, from industry leaders such as Samsung, Deluxe Entertainment, Amazon Web Services and Corning.

The fact that these companies are coming to NAB for the first time is proof of its success, as well as its ability to evolve within what is a rapidly changing environment. After all, many of the first-time exhibitors are delivering technologies that have changed the way business is done. As if to make the point, the theme of this year's NAB is 'Metamorphosis: the Changing Face of Media & Entertainment'.

Other industry-leading brands exhibiting at this year's NAB will include: Accenture, AVID, Canon, Cisco Systems, Clear Channel Satellite, Dolby, Ericsson, Evertz, Fujinon / FUJIFILM, General Dynamics, Grass Valley, Harmonic, Harris Broadcasting, Hewlett-Packard, Hitachi, IBM, Intel, JVC, Microsoft, Motorola Mobility, Oracle, Panasonic, Ross Video, Sony, Toshiba, Verizon, and the Vitec Group.

Of course, many of the top companies keep relatively tight-lipped with regards to NAB exhibitions, saving the big news for the show itself.

Peter Savage, MD of Azule Finance says: "The big companies always save up their big news for NAB, but with so many cameras announced in the last 12 months I would be surprised if we saw another camera-heavy show. What’s interesting is that this year could mark the acceptance of 4K as a broadcast format and while it’s a long way from becoming the de-rigeur standard for all programming, NAB will see manufacturers making the case for 4K as a viable option for programming beyond natural history, high-end dramas, commercials and short films.

"It’s also back to businesses as usual for the UK broadcast industry, after last year’s disrupted shooting season. This year, with a wider choice of 4K cameras, tax breaks for UK-based productions and the continued tax relief for capital expenditure, we could see large scale investment from rental houses, dealers and freelancers into 4K cameras as they look to future proof their stock and the content they produce."

One company that extols the virtues of NAB is Sony.

Olivier Bovis, Head of AV Media, Sony Europe, commented: "In 2012, Sony cemented its role as an innovator that is making the future of broadcast possible today. We are at the heart of revolutionary changes in the industry. Sony’s F-series cameras and the dedicated XAVC codec are already on the way to bringing 4K content to new and varied audiences across the globe."

On top of well-known faces and big names, NAB also has a few new features and exhibitions in store for this year's attendees.

The Exhibit Hall will feature a new exhibition, entitled Connected Media World, featuring companies that specialise in IPTV, mobile, social and cloud technologies, devices and content.

The Enterprise Computing Pit will provide information on cloud computing, harnessing big data and collaborative and content management apps and middleware.

Visitors will also be offered the opportunity of attending TAP! (Technologically Advanced Publishing); a three-day, multi-track workshop focussing on digital publishing, marketing and monetising content.

On Sunday, the Encore Hotel will host Second Screen Sunday; a conference formed with the aim of addressing the latest business opportunities, creative case studies and technology innovations related to the creation of supplementary, synchronised and social TV content. The conference is being produced in partnership with 2nd Screen Society (S3).

And also at this year's show for the first time, NAB has announced Sprockit; a new program that gives ten 'game-changing' start-ups the opportunity to showcase new products and services directly to NAB Show attendees.

Oliver Bovis comments: "NAB 2013 will unite the industry once again and provides us with the perfect platform to engage with customers and show them how our technology can help bring richer viewing experiences to more and more people."

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