SMPTE and IMF User Group forge alliance to advance media standards

SMPTE and the IMF User Group have announced a collaboration aimed at advancing the Interoperable Master Format (IMF) family of SMPTE Standards. The IMF User Group, established in 2016 under the Hollywood Professional Association (HPA), serves as a global forum for end-users and implementors of IMF standards.

IMF, outlined in SMPTE ST 2067, streamlines the storage of audio-visual content necessary for creating various distribution versions across multiple territories and platforms. This format facilitates business-to-business content exchange among content owners, post facilities, and distribution platforms, playing a crucial role in modern content fulfillment. It has significantly contributed to transitioning from tape-based to file-based workflows in television and streaming, emerging as the preferred UHD media delivery format for numerous content providers.

The IMF UG’s mission is to promote IMF adoption by bringing together content owners, service providers, retailers, and equipment/software vendors. Through member meetings, workshops, plugfests, and best practice publications, the group fosters collaboration and knowledge sharing. Members actively contribute to shaping the long-term roadmap of IMF standards.

“We are honored to become the home for the IMF User Group and thankful to our colleagues at HPA for all they’ve done to administer the user group to this point,” said SMPTE Executive Director David Grindle. “Community organizations, like IMF UG, are vital to keeping our standards updated with the feedback from those using the systems.”

“IMF is a true example of how a standard was developed in one organization, deployed into the industry and then gathered a community of users via the HPA and now SMPTE,” said SMPTE President Renard T. Jenkins. “As a longtime member of the UG and SMPTE, I am excited that the user group and the standards community are coming together to continue its growth and further its development.”

According to both companies’ statements, the collaboration between SMPTE and the IMF User Group signifies a strategic partnership aimed at furthering the adoption and development of IMF standards, ultimately benefiting media professionals, technologists, engineers, and stakeholders across the industry.

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