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Brainstorm: Don’t dial in, beam in

Posted on May 4, 2023 by FEED Staff

Sponsored editorial

Distance is no object, in a new age of teletransport-enabled broadcast

It only took 60 years for Star Trek’s transporter technology to actually become reality. Beaming a remote talent into a broadcast studio – who can interact freely with onsite talent and environments – isn’t science fiction any more. 

This kind of teletransport is a quantum leap beyond old-school remote video connections. We’re talking about bringing a remote person into a set, as if that person was really with the production, creating enough realism that audiences will believe they are present in the room.

In teletransport, talent is captured in chroma in a remote, real environment, then integrated into a real set as an AR object, in a hyper-realistic virtual set, or an on-set LED screen which can present the talent in the correct size and perspective within the scene. For more seamless realism, the talent can interact with other digital elements like virtual lighting, or cast shadows on virtual elements in the scene. 

Brainstorm technology has demonstrated the possibilities of this feature both in public demonstrations and live shows created by real clients. These sometimes include other complex elements such as AR objects, placed or moving in front of or behind characters.

In its early days, this teletransport was carried out in real environments, with the character inserted in a remote location. New technology allows for a wider range of possibilities, including inserting a guest or character into an LED video wall to interact with an on-set presenter, so both can be seen not only by the audience at home, but a live studio audience, too. With Brainstorm’s 3D presenter technology, a remote character can interact with virtual objects on-set, casting shadows or even reflections. This makes for much more successful integration into the hyper-realistic virtual backgrounds generated  live thanks to new rendering techniques.

Teletransport takes telepresence to another level, allowing a person to move away from the prison of the 16:9 rectangle of a webcam or conferencing software. By chroma keying a remote character – which can be done with a smartphone – people can visit your set from anywhere in the world. 

Originally published in the spring 2023 issue of FEED magazine.

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