Source = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J Taking the hotel experience way into the future, Novotel has teamed up with Microsoft to launch the world first; hotel room of the future.Unveiled earlier this week, the room called 3120 will be housed at the Novotel Paris Vaugirard Montparnasse and will be equipped with technology yet to be released in the market.Including voice recognition, a fitness interface and a Surface multimedia table, parent company, Accor explained in a statement the room was fit for both the business traveller and family trips. “We wanted to reinvent the hotel room experience by harmoniously melding design and new digital technologies,” global chief marketing officer Grégoire Champetier explained. “It’s crucial to take our customers’ changing habits and expectations into account. “In particular, this means rethinking our rooms in digital terms.”Working with architecture firm, Naço, the hotel room has been described to have a “unique ambience” upon entry and designed to be a “decompression chamber” between the outside world and a spacious sensorial environment.Majority of technology cannot be seen to the naked eye, according to Accor, so as to not overwhelm the guests by its technological surrounding.The room is also divided into two sections, entertainment and the rest, and making a clear division between the parents’ space and the children’s.Both sections are equipped with an Xbox 360 console with Kinect, with a fold up bed for the adults while the youngeon’s play in a more playful and colourful room with a tatami mat that rises up on one side to form a bench.“The two environments co-exist and echo each other with extruded volumes,” Accor’s statement read. Other new features also include the Surface table, which responds to the user’s hand gestures and allows them to browse through the web, play board games or search interactive maps. Also the Sensorit interactive mirror looks like an ordinary mirror but displays a variety of information in graphic and text form.It allows users to check the weather or a range of multimedia content, play the radio as well as access new through the simple wave of the hand. “Novotel and Microsoft will continue their partnership through the deployment of specially-designed Kinect Experience stands in public areas across the Novotel network,” Accor’s statement continued. “They are also considering the possibility of offering the game console in rooms so that guests can benefit from an ultimate entertainment experience during their stay.”The hotel was designed to accommodate two adults and two children under 16 and is available for general reservations for a three month period from 14 February 2012.
February 4, 2011Welcome to the first workshop of the year 2011:[from left]Anthony Weston [ seminar week]Guy Flagg [construction intern]Tony D’Archangel [scholarship program]Colin Evans,Dahong Choe from South Korea,Edwina Harrison from Australia [seminar week],[seated]Special guest Paolo Soleri.
The EBU is conducting a series of subjective tests to gauge the impact of higher frame-rates for UHDTV services in Munich this week.The tests, conducted by the EBU’s Broadcast Technology Futures group, make up of the heads of research labs of the BBC, IRT, Rai and NHK, is conducting tests at he IRT’s facilities.The move follows subjective UHDTV resolution tests last February that revealed that higher resolutions would not be enough to create a clearly perceptible difference compared to HDTV.The latest round of tests coincides with work being carried out to investigate other parameters required to generate a more immersive experience with UHDTV. These include include higher dynamic range and extended colour space as well as frame rates.The tests are designed to address questions including whether the current UHDTV standard specified by the ITU, which includes only the 120Hz higher frame rate, needs to be revised to incorporate other rates that are multiples of 50Hz. The EBU said that early indications supported the idea that higher frame rages are more appreciated by observers than higher resolution.
Intelsat’s next-generation EPIC class of satelliteSatellite operator Intelsat has agreed to merge with affordable internet provider OneWeb, in a deal backed by a large investment from Japan’s SoftBank Group.Intelsat and OneWeb will merge in a share-for-share transaction, with Intelsat also agreeing a share-purchase agreement with OneWeb investor SoftBank.SoftBank will invest US$1.7 billion in newly issued common and preferred shares of the combined company – a move designed to help reduce Intelsat’s debt by approximately $3.6 billion. This will result in SoftBank taking an approximate 39.9% voting stake in the combined business.The investment comes after SoftBank committed to invest US$1 billion in OneWeb in December, to help support OneWeb’s vision of delivering affordable, high-speed, low-latency internet to rural and remote communities around the world.“We believe that combining Intelsat with OneWeb will create an industry leader unique in its ability to provide affordable broadband anywhere in the world,” said Intelsat CEO Stephen Spengler.“As an early equity investor in OneWeb, we recognised a network that was a complement to our next-generation Intelsat EpicNG fleet and a fit with our long-term strategy. By merging OneWeb’s LEO satellite constellation and innovative technology with our global scale, terrestrial infrastructure and GEO satellite network, we will create advanced solutions that address the need for ubiquitous broadband.”Spengler said that the deal will “significantly strengthen” Intelsat’s capital structure and help it to accelerate into new areas, such as providing connectivity for connected vehicles.OneWeb founder and CEO, Greg Wyler, said: “With SoftBank’s support we will build the world’s first truly global broadband company, accelerating our mission of bridging the digital divide by connecting the four billion people without access today. While there are numerous growth paths available to OneWeb, we are very excited at the prospect of working with Intelsat on this shared objective.”SoftBank chairman and CEO Masayoshi Son added: “This combination is consistent with SoftBank’s strategy of investing in disruptive, foundational technologies that are building the infrastructure for tomorrow, and this proposal offers a win-win opportunity to accelerate OneWeb’s mission while enhancing the Intelsat balance sheet.”The deal is expected to close late in the third quarter of 2017.
Colin McLeodFormer NBCUniversal (NBCU) European channels chief Colin McLeod will succeed Jeff Ford as managing director of Fox Networks Group UK.The new post comes just over a year since DTVE sister title TBI revealed McLeod was leaving NBCUniversal International Networks after a decade.McLeod begin his new post today in a part-time capacity before transitioning to a full time role in the spring.Previous UK channels chief Ford remains with the 21st Century Fox-owned broadcaster in a supporting capacity as a first original drama, Deep State, launches. He will retire after that has rolled out across Europe and Africa.At NBCU, McLeod was most recently MD of the UK and emerging channels, overseeing a 150-strong team and channels brands such as Universal Channel and Syfy.He had joined NBC when it bought UK-based channels group Sparrowhawk Media in 2007, where he was commercial director, and has also worked for BBC Worldwide and Travel Channel in marketing and affiliate sales.McLeod remained working for NBCU in a consultancy capacity after he left his post. Lee Raftery replaced him as MD of the UK and emerging markets.“Colin’s blended background offers a well-rounded and hugely valuable experience to our business and we have no doubt he will step into the role and immediately have an impact,” said Diego Londono, COO of Fox Networks Group Europe and Africa.The news comes soon after DTVE sister title TBI revealed former Fox programming chief Toby Etheridge joined Warner Bros. International Television Distribution. Shoshanna Wilson has replaced him.Fox’s UKpay TV business includes the Fox channel, National Geographic, Nat Geo Wild and BabyTV.The wider regional business operates 151 channels and has 25 offices.