Radio Computing Services
|Headquarters||White Plains, New York, United States of America|
|Products||GSelector, Selector, Linker, Zetta, NexGen Digital, Master Control, Aquira, RCSnews|
|Parent||Clear Channel Communications|
RCS, originally called Radio Computing Services, is a provider of scheduling and broadcast software for radio, Internet and television stations. The company was established in 1979 by Dr. Andrew Economos. On January 26, 2006, Clear Channel Communications purchased RCS as a subsidiary company.
Music Scheduling Software
The first product developed by RCS was Selector, a music scheduling system. The original Selector was developed on a PDP-11/03 under RT-11 and was programmed in Fortran and FMS-11. The goal of Selector is to help music directors of radio stations to handle day-to-day operations such as daily schedule generation, maintenance of music library and format hours (also known as clocks). As of 2013 RCS has approximately 10,500 clients worldwide and, according to the company, this makes it one of the world's largest broadcast software companies.
RCS also provides a scheduling system for non-musical elements (jingles, promos, etc.) called Linker, a digital automation system for broadcasting from PC called Master Control, a commercial (spot) trafficking system known as Airwaves and software for radio newsrooms called RCSnews.
In April 2006, RCS introduced new music scheduling software for radio, satellite, DAB, HD and internet stations called GSelector. The original Selector system used Rules to determine what songs can be scheduled at given schedule positions: do not play two rock songs in a row (Sound Code rule); do not play a Beatles song in less than 2 hours (Artist Separation rule); do not play certain songs in the morning (Daypart Restriction rule) and many more. In GSelector, music director sets goals (hence the GSelector name) of what should happen; instead of rules the system provides a set of controls allowing to easily adjust (increase/decrease) balance and demand of a variety of music attributes: tempo, energy, mood, artist occurrence, etc.
Apart from goal-based scheduling GSelector also offers a new approach to music libraries. Unlike the previous system which maintains one library per database (whereas database usually refers to a single station), GSelector allows to operate individual stations (with individual schedules) that share one music library within a single database.
Studio Automation Software
NexGen is a digital automation system originally developed by Prophet Systems, Inc. Prophet Systems was founded in 1989 by Ray & Kevin Lockhart of Ogallala, Nebraska to develop a system that would run their radio stations. Prophet Systems went on to become a subsidiary of Clear Channel Communications in 1997. On January 19, 2007, Prophet Systems and RCS merged.
NexGen allows for voice tracking, remote control, and complete station automation; as well as dual redundancy, an emergency control room system, and satellite control. Alongside many other media organizations, Sirius Satellite Radio uses Nexgen to manage some of its programming.
Introduced in 2011, RCS Remote for NexGen is the latest application in the RCS/NexGen platform of products. RCS Remote for NexGen is the first application developed by RCS for the iOS platform to allow for remote control of a station in a NexGen system. The application is designed for the iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad, and iPad2.
Master Control is an automation playout system used in over 100 countries worldwide. Master Control integrates with RCS's other products, such as Selector music scheduling and Linker promo scheduling.
RCS's latest automation system is known as Zetta. This new automation system uses the latest technology to provide a great user experience. Zetta consists of an eye-catching user interface, floating modules, and an innovative play technology. Zetta is used in a variety of different countries, including France, Germany, Italy, UK, Jordan, China, Taiwan, South Africa, Poland, Singapore, South Korea, India, Japan, Sweden, Australia and the United States.
Traffic System Software
Aquira is a scalable platform that centrally supports single station to multi-station or multi-location broadcast groups. The database allows the user to manage scheduling and billing of advertising orders across multiple stations from one location. The log management tool allows the user to open multiple logs at the same time and drag and drop spots from one day to the other.
RCSnews is a radio newsroom system. The software was first released by Prophet Systems in 2004. After the merge with RCS, the product was officially renamed to RCSnews. Since that time, RCSnews has become common in newsrooms around the world. RCSnews allows for a transition for file transfers to NexGen, Zetta, and Master Control. One of the features of RCSnews is the robustness of the wire copy process, where sources such as HTTP, FTP, RSS, and Email are supported.
RCS iPush is the first application developed by RCS for the iOS platform. The application provides for audio recording with the unique ability to send the audio to NexGen, Zetta, or RCS News. Many users have found iPush to be useful for recording voicetracks.
- "Clear Channel Buys RCS". Radio Magazine Online. 2006-01-26. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
- "Clear Channel - form 10-K filing". SEC Info - Fran Finnegan & Company. 2007-03-01. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
- "RCS and Prophet Systems to Merge". Radio Magazine Online. 2007-01-23. Retrieved 2008-08-06.
- "Broadcasters Flock to NexGen Digital". Digital Broadcasting. 2001-06-29. Retrieved 2009-04-17.