NJTV News with Mike Schneider integrates LiveU’s portable uplink solutions into weeknight newscast; portable camera units help make news in any weather – from Hurricane Sandy to recent snowstorms

February 20, 2014 – Montclair, NJ – NJTV, New Jersey’s public television network, extends the reach of its weeknight newscast, NJTV News with Mike Schneider, in all types of weather using technology from LiveU, the pioneer and leader in portable live video-over-cellular solutions.   It works so efficiently, the news programming is adding a fourth piece of equipment to its equipment roster for 2014.

LiveU backpacks, which act essentially as satellite trucks in a compact backpack, provide portable, robust uplink system for HD-quality coverage of breaking and local news, and opens opportunities for new types of reporting.  A single reporter can go on location with a LiveU backpack and shoot, edit and upload stories where the news happens.

“The LiveU backpacks have greatly extended our reach, making our small correspondent team have a bigger presence throughout the state,” said Phil Alongi, executive producer of New Jersey public television’s weeknight news program NJTV News with Mike Schneider. “The technology enables us to be nimble when it comes to covering breaking news, press conferences, and on-site interviews anywhere they are happening.  And they help us tell our stories in any weather, from hurricanes to this winter’s snowstorms.”

NJTV’s Ian Elliott takes a LiveU through stormy weather to cover Governor Chris Christie’s inauguration in Trenton, NJ January 2014. Photo courtesy NJTV.

LiveU units have proven instrumental in NJTV’s special live coverage like Hurricane Sandy, Election Night and breaking-news scenarios like the recent Seaside Park’s fire and the early January snowstorm. They are being used throughout this winter’s stormy weather, from correspondent Lauren Wanko’s report on how the New Jersey town of Manalapan dealt with the season’s first major snowstorm to making the Governor’s Inauguration coverage visible as visibility outside the War Memorial in Trenton became worse.

“On days of bad weather, like the Governor’s inauguration ceremony, it’s so much easier to carry a backpack than worry about a satellite truck set-up,” said Alongi.

NJTV was able to obtain three LiveU backbacks in 2012 through the generosity of FJC – A Foundation of Philanthropic Funds and three other New Jersey foundations, after happenstance brought their use into the media spotlight.  The network had the units on loan for trial use during the 2012 election season when they were rerouted by Hurricane Sandy hitting the region. The LiveU’s were used to cover the storm’s impact and aftermath on New Jersey from Jersey City to Cape May, and their success was shared with a New York Times reporter.

“We were interviewed about our Sandy coverage and made reference to the LiveUs being critical to keeping stories going throughout and after the storm,” said NJTV General Manager John Servidio.  “After reading about what we had accomplished with them and our desire to purchase the units, funders called us and said they wanted to make it possible.  We’ve been grateful ever since.”

“Over the past few years LiveU has changed the way commercial broadcasters acquire live video, by removing the physical limitations of traditional satellite uplink and creating a cost-effective alternative,” said Ken Zamkow, Head of US Marketing, LiveU. “We are very excited to see that public television stations like NJTV are also increasingly able to leverage our technology for the benefit of viewers and local communities.”

The LiveUs have proven so useful that funds have been found to bring an additional one on board for the news team in 2014.

To see LiveUs in action, tune in to NJTV News with Mike Schneider any weeknight at 6pm, 7:30pm and 11pm on NJTV (check local listings) or log on to their website at njtvnews.org.

“We expect LiveU and NJTV to continue a very fruitful relationship for many more stories to come,” said Alongi. “So as they say, let it snow!”


About NJTV

NJTV brings quality public television programs and resources to communities throughout New Jersey and its tri-state neighbors, including acclaimed national PBS series like American MastersNatureCharlie Rose, and BBC World News America and state-focused news, arts and public affairs shows, including Reporters Roundtable with Michael AronOne-on-One with Steve Adubato, Tales of the Jersey ShoreDue Process and State of the Arts. The station’s week-nightly news broadcast, NJTV News with Mike Schneider, features stories from across the Garden State. NJTV complements its growing news staff by partnering with state-wide media and higher education institutions. The network’s website, https://www.njtvonline.org posts the latest local news, information and program schedules, and its education section offers local educators free, classroom-ready, digital resources through VITAL NJ.

NJTV is comprised of WNJN, WNJS, WNJB, and WNJT, which collectively broadcast throughout NJ. Formerly New Jersey Network (NJN), NJTV is operated under an agreement with the state of New Jersey by Public Media NJ, Inc. (PMNJ), a non-profit affiliate of WNET, parent company of award-winning New York public television stations THIRTEEN and WLIW21. Network sponsorships and partnerships are available.

About LiveU

LiveU is the pioneer of broadcast-quality, video-over-cellular solutions that allow live video transmission from any location around the world. With top-tier customers in 60+ countries, LiveU’s solutions have been used for breaking news and high-profile events, including the 2013 Sochi Winter Olympics, 2012 US Presidential Campaign, London 2012 Olympics, Hurricane Sandy, 2011 British Royal Wedding, Japanese Tsunami, GRAMMY Awards® and Super Bowl. From backpacks to smartphones, LiveU offers a complete range of devices for live video coverage. LiveU’s solutions include multiple 4G LTE/3G, HSPA+, WiMAX and Wi-Fi cellular.


NJTV's Ian Elliott takes a LiveU through stormy weather to cover Governor Chris Christie's inauguration in Trenton January 2014. Photo: courtesy NJTV.

NJTV News with Mike Schneider correspondent David Cruz covers a story via LiveU in Newark, NJ. Photo courtesy NJTV.

LiveU logo

NJTV logo