Media Broadcast sees DTT in danger

J÷rn Krieger ęRapidTVNews| 26-02-2012

German technical service provider Media Broadcast is pleading for a preservation of the status quo in digital terrestrial broadcasting. This requires the long-term preservation of the frequency spectrum currently used for digital terrestrial broadcasting, the company announced in Bonn.
Following a decision at the recent WRC Global Broadcast Conference in Geneva, these frequencies are partially endangered, according to Media Broadcast. From 2015, around a third of the spectrum currently used for DVB-T terrestrial television (694-790 MHz) could be assigned in parallel to mobile networks. In the opinion of many market players, this endangers the prospects for the development of digital terrestrial television (DTT). It would also threaten the interference-free reception of DTT signals.
"Innovation requires planning reliability. Strong assertions about the long-term use of current broadcast frequencies are therefore urgently needed", said Bernd Kraus, CEO of Media Broadcast. "We call upon European institutions, the German government and federal states not to implement the WRC-12 stipulations regarding broadcast frequencies. With the agreements concluded in Geneva, the signatories are taking a hatchet to the roots of the digital terrestrial sector", warns Kraus.
The available frequency spectrum was already trimmed at broadcasters' expense in 2009: Around 20% of broadcast frequencies were assigned to mobile networks in Germany. A further mutilation would be biased and inappropriate, argues Media Broadcast.
DTT is a major component in digital television broadcasting, as is evidenced by regular new channel launches and contract extensions, according to the subsidiary of French TDF Group. The technology allows television viewers to receive the most-watched TV channels at a low cost, even in moving vehicles and on mobile devices. An additional loss of frequencies would not only be unacceptable from consumers' point of view, but it would also contradict the competition of infrastructures encouraged by regulators' policies, argues the company.
Media Broadcast says that it wants to make an important contribution to expanding the prospects of DTT in future. In conjunction with all market players, the company is evaluating the further development of terretrial broadcasting. The new transmission standard DVB-T2 offers the possibility of considerably increasing the number and broadcast quality of channels. Furthermore, hybrid offers are possible, bringing internet content to TV screens and enabling additional TV services.