HD usage in the Middle East will depend on availability

Most vendors seem to think that the Middle East is not ready for High Definition. But as Rida Jaafar, VTR Beirut’s systems and IT manager, says more people in the region would prefer to use HD equipment if it was available here.

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By  Vijaya Cherian Published  August 29, 2005

|~||~||~|High Definition is the new buzz phrase in the industry and it seems to sum up the gist of a good bit of what we have witnessed in the past few months in terms of both product launches as well as regional installations. In the Middle East, we have had the advantage of having a very young broadcast industry, which means it has been easier for us to make a decision to go with HD as Al Jazeera and VTR Beirut have done. But vendors are so busy selling their HD wares to the West and Europe that they don’t have enough equipment to bring to the Middle East as well. Rida Jaafar, VTR Beirut’s systems and IT manager, says if the HD market has yet to take off in the Middle East, it is because of a lack of HD production equipment such as HD cameras here. “If suppliers put more HD production equipment out there, directors would be more inclined to use HD cameras. They have the power to drive this market,” he says. Over the last few months, I have asked several vendors if they are targeting the Middle East and the answer in most cases, is “Not yet” or “We are looking to do so in the future”. Here is one region that did not succumb to the pressures of the global depression and was happily investing in solutions at a time when the rest of the world was cutting back on expenditure. If vendors have not seen this opportunity so far, IBC will be a good place to begin. A significant number of decision makers from the Middle East will be coming to IBC to look at HD equipment and make no mistake, they will be a well-informed lot. Vendors that see the advantage in this market and bring their products and support to this region quickly will benefit immensely. ||**||

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