Avid’s long-planned shift in product strategy reached a major milestone this week with the release of a new, streamlined and fully web-accessible version of the company’s MediaCentral enterprise software suite for media production and management.

Implemented on Microsoft’s Azure cloud service, the new MediaCentral platform opens up the options for broadcast and post-production facilities looking to modernize through cloud-based or virtualized deployments. It’s also a critical opportunity for Avid to develop its software-as-a-service business through cloud and AI technology.

Key to the offering is MediaCentral Cloud UX (above), a unified user interface that will allow searching, editing, collaborating on and publishing media from Windows and OS X computers running Chrome and Safari browsers, or from iOS and Android devices running Avid’s Cloud UX apps.

The MediaCentral platform includes separate modules for different types of collaborative workflow. The Editorial Management module allows smaller teams in post and broadcast access media via Avid Nexis storage and to share folders, projects, bins, media and metadata using any web browser via Avid’s new HyperBin architecture. Avid said assistants or producers can use the Cloud UX interface to perform asset management tasks — adding metadata, creating subclips — and relieve some of the burden on the editor toiling on the timeline by making media more easily accessible.

The Production Management module targets large-scale broadcast and media production with an eye on simplifying production management and workflow automation. Remote Media Composer editing is enabled via a feature called Cloud Remote, and the module works with Avid’s Publish app and Distribute distribution service to publish content across platforms and devices.

The Asset Management module includes asset-management and content-analysis that creates an index of metadata that can be searched from the MediaCentral Cloud UX or from integrated MediaCentral panels within Avid Media Composer and Adobe Premiere Pro CC. Avid said that, because MediaCentral is an open platform, support can be developed for other third-party NLEs.

The Newsroom Management module is customized for broadcast newsrooms, with remote access and content distribution tools to match, including the ability to access remote footage from the field, integrate social media, and create graphics to go along with news stories.

One more MediaCentral module, Graphics Management, is still planned for future release, targeting mainly template-based graphics generation for news and sports production.

Avid MediaCentral diagram

A graphic visualization of the complete Avid MediaCentral platform. Click to see full-size image

“Our next-generation MediaCentral production suite gives creative teams across news, sports, post-production and live production the power to create and deliver more content to all their media outlets in less time than ever before,” said Avid Chief Product Officer Dana Ruzicka in a prepared statement. “MediaCentral’s total deployment flexibility accommodates the unique ways that our customers want to set up and manage their operations and easily supports how their teams do their work. The platform positions content creators for increased creativity, productivity, and agility as they evolve to take command of their next opportunity.”

Avid MediaCentral: www.avid.com