Belo CTO Craig Harper had his career figured out at an early age.He fell in love with TV as a nine-year-old after touring KWTX in his hometown of Waco, Texas, and he started working there when he turned 16. But his dream job was at Belo’s flagship station WFAA, up the road in the big city of Dallas. At 29, Harper’s dream became a reality.
The TV antenna manufacturer’s many clients are wondering who will service their existing RF systems and who will emerge to sell them new ones. Demand could shoot up greatly if the FCC OKs band repacking following a spectrum auction. Possible solutions could be current U.S. competitors to Dielectric as well as a number of foreign firms.
While the growing momentum behind so-called channel-in-a-box technology is intriguing and makes a lot of sense, some broadcast engineers say tech vendors have jumped the gun, racing to market with technology that is not mature enough for American TV station operations. “The single box units are now being utilized more for cable channels than anything else,” says Sinclair’s Del Parks. “At the end of the day, a TV station is probably a little more complex to the degree that it may need some specific pieces of equipment.”
Belo’s Tech VP Craig Harper is overseeing the group’s staggered rollout of mobile DTV. He will be going to this year’s NAB Show with that on his agenda. Other action items for Harper and Belo include upgrading field acquisition and editing at eight stations and looking to improve news ingestion in multiple video formats and quickly make it available for broadcast, for the Web and any other medium.