Posted on March 5, 2020 in ATSC News
As NEXTGEN TV powered by ATSC 3.0 launches across the United States this year, ATSC is working on two important roadmap projects with significant opportunities for member involvement. One is to determine the expected rollout plan for various ATSC 3.0 features over the coming years in the U.S., and the other is to determine how the ATSC 3.0 standard should be developed as technology advances and marketplace demands evolve. With the annual product release cycle in mind, the feature rollout plan is currently a focus for ATSC members.
South Korea has provided an example feature roadmap. ATSC 3.0 was launched in Korea in May 2017 with its main feature being 4K spatial resolution. This was a key goal, especially in anticipation of the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang. Korea also prioritized the hybrid broadcast/broadband portal branded as TIVIVA. A joint effort among the three primary broadcasters, KBC, MBC and SBS, TIVIVA enables viewers to easily discover and access on-demand content offered by the broadcasters via their internet streaming platforms. Through TIVIVA, the broadcast audience seamlessly toggles between over-the-air linear viewing and over-the-top on-demand viewing. Moving forward from these two initial features, South Korea began use of the advanced emergency messaging features in 2019 with broadcasts to digital signage as an initial use case. Today, exploration of additional features – including consideration of mobile, automotive, high dynamic range, and more – is ongoing.
For the U.S. market, Planning Team 7 on ATSC 3.0 Service Evolution Roadmap (PT-7) is focused on the feature rollout plan for ATSC 3.0 services in the U.S. Led by two ATSC Board members, Jim DeChant of News Press & Gazette (Chair) and Jon Fairhurst of Samsung (Vice Chair), PT-7 is seeking to reach consensus on the 2021 feature set for the U.S. in the coming weeks. The team’s findings will represent a consensus opinion among ATSC members who span the ecosystem from networks to broadcasters to vendors to receiver makers and so on. While requirements and implementations are beyond the scope of PT-7, consensus among these contributors will be a meaningful statement that represents a likely deployment scenario.
As PT-7 members confer, they are keenly aware of the annual receiver development cycle. Many receiver makers release products on an annual cycle, and in order to prepare for an upcoming cycle, certain criteria must be met. A primary goal is the development of the Consumer Technology Association (CTA) logo conformance program. Together with NAB, CTA manages the ATSC 3.0 conformance test suite, which is required to obtain the NEXTGEN TV logo license for receiver products. As the feature set grows, so must the conformance test suite. Test suite development is a multi-step process that includes developing test items, test assertions, test materials and more. It all starts with a common understanding of the desired feature set, which needs to be completed in time to address the remaining steps in the process. PT-7 is working to provide a draft report to the ATSC Board of Directors shortly.
We thank Mr. DeChant, Mr. Fairhurst and all the members of PT-7 who are working together to develop the Service Evolution Roadmap for the U.S. PT-7 is open to all ATSC members. More information can be found on the ATSC website about PT-7 and about ATSC membership. If you’re not yet involved, now is a great time to join us!
Madeleine Noland, ATSC President
Posted in ATSC News
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