Astucemedia, a pioneer in real-time broadcast graphics and data integration, has provided Asharq News, the leading multiplatform economic and political news service, with highly advanced technological solutions — complete with dynamic, data-driven graphics — to create an immersive news experience.
With central offices at the Dubai International Financial Centre (DIFC) and Washington, D.C., and studios in Cairo and Abu Dhabi, the newly launched Asharq News provides 24/7 news coverage across the Arab world and beyond with a focus on regional and global economic affairs.
Astucemedia has built the news channel’s robust graphics infrastructure that is among the most advanced in the Middle East. In line with the news channel’s slogan “Connecting the dots,” the Astucemedia team worked between its offices in Dubai, Montreal, and Europe to create a sophisticated brand identity for Asharq News, including sonic branding.
In close collaboration with the client’s creative and technical teams, Astucemedia’s skilled designers and engineers delivered advanced graphics for augmented reality, touchscreen, and videowall (including floor) as well as the sprawling atrium inside the DIFC facility across four floors with 26 layers comprising 1,527 LED tiles.
Alongside financial graphics, Astucemedia’s solutions for Asharq News cover finance, weather, sports, social media, and other news streams as well as standard graphics elements, such as channel ident, menu boards, and tickers. In addition, the broadcast technology provider delivered a world conflict scenario application, where the presenter can use the touchscreen and illustrate the scenario in the studio via augmented reality.
Building on its long-standing relationship with Bloomberg, Astucemedia provided Asharq News with a robust data platform to support more than 40 stock markets around the world with 10,000-plus security subscriptions for real-time updates. The highly sophisticated data platform displays live quotes, intraday tick-by-tick, and minute data for charting, including candlesticks and heatmaps.
Astucemedia prides itself on offering solutions that support real-time financial data. By deploying its data management platform at Asharq News, it has enabled the end user to integrate real-time data streams from multiple sources into a unified workflow that simplifies the addition of data-driven graphics to any real-time graphic system, web, or mobile application. The data is consolidated into the central platform and shared seamlessly to the Vizrt system.
The Astucemedia teams worked closely with Steven Cheak, director of brand, creative and digital at Asharq News, to incorporate the brand into the shows and the digital platform.
Commenting on the project, Cheak said, “In a competitive market, it was important that Asharq News was able to stand out and differentiate itself. Design was a big part of that objective when we embarked on this project, and Astucemedia was integral to the setup of Asharq News. Before the pandemic, their design and support staff worked tirelessly on site and remotely to prepare for the launch. From design and integration of show templates, augmented reality, and the ticker to the animation of the production elements of some shows, their attention to detail and continuous support played an instrumental role in the successful launch of Asharq News.”
Alexandre Leclerc, CEO of Astucemedia, added, “The Asharq News project was one of our most challenging projects with regard to scale, ambition, and deliverables. The key was to seamlessly integrate real-time data in various shows while also being creative with data visualisation. The channel’s partnership with Bloomberg is critical to this project; we had to be mindful of creating a new brand identity for Asharq News that can easily adapt to the business need of displaying the Bloomberg data and content.”
Dr. Nabeel Al-Khatib, general manager of Asharq News, said, “Astucemedia has equipped Asharq News with state-of-the-art digital infrastructure that is unique in the region, especially in terms of the latest graphics, augmented reality, and virtual reality systems as well as a motion-tracking system that allows high fluidity while displaying visual content. Astucemedia was the ideal choice to execute our pioneering vision for leveraging artificial intelligence to offer an unmatched user experience in the Arab world. For the first time in the region, Asharq News has implemented complete IP technology — the future of the broadcasting industry — on an ST 2110 TV broadcast system scale.”
Astucemedia has entered a multi-year agreement with Asharq News to provide round-the-clock support for the news channel’s data infrastructure.