Quantel is preparing to launch a live studio highlights system by the end of the year.

Quantel and recent acquisition Snell are working on combining their product sets, but chief executive Ray Cross said the company was also keen to develop more tools to service live productions, with the outside broadcast market one of the areas that could be addressed by the as-yet-unnamed highlights system.

Quantel expects to demonstrate a control panel for the system at IBC in September, ahead of a wider launch later this year.

The move will put Quantel into direct competition with EVS and its LSM software and remote controller, which dominates the live replay market. Cross described the panel as “the start of a wider product set”.

He said: “It’s down to customer demand. They feel a bit captive and they want us to address their needs.”

Customer feedback from the various iterations of Quantel’s LiveTouch system will be incorporated into the highlights system.

LiveTouch, which allows users to cut highlights and play out from a single workstation, was first touted at IBC in 2011 as part of the company’s Filespeed software for its Enterprise SQ news and sport production system. It has been developed with US sport broadcaster Fox Sports Media, which uses the software in conjunction with Quantel’s sQ View and sQ Edit systems.

“Customers want to be able to control any port across any number of servers,” said Cross. “So the ability to use a highlights system across a business and not just in one location is important.

Also, once a clip has been produced, it is useful if it is available instantly anywhere on an organisation’s network. That will provide a lot of the advantages that Quantel’s SQ brings, but on a wider basis.”

“Quite a few [broadcasters] want to take a beta version of the panel, which will be ready around September time,” Cross added.