ATSC 3.0: NAB Calls on FCC to Authorize Next Generation TV

In a 21-page petition, a group comprised of the NAB, America’s Public Television Stations, the Consumer Technology Association and the AWARN Alliance is asking the FCC to authorize use of the new ATSC 3.0 transmission standard — what the collective refers to as “Next Generation TV” — in order to improve delivery of 4K broadcasting, streaming to smartphones and tablets, personalization features and IP-based services. ATSC 3.0 “will create the bedrock for continuing innovation by the television industry for decades to come,” claims the petition.

According to TVNewsCheck, the petitioners recommend “the FCC should authorize the standard’s use on a voluntary basis, claiming that it will require few rules changes and will not disrupt the current broadcasting service.”

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“By allowing voluntary use of this new transmission standard now, the commission will give broadcasters and manufacturers the certainty they need to invest in equipment to support innovative new technologies as part of the repack of broadcast spectrum following the incentive auction,” explains the petition (available online in PDF form).

“Next-Gen TV will provide broadcasters with the voluntary option of offering a higher-quality viewing experience, an IP-based infrastructure and greater interactivity with viewers,” said NAB president Gordon Smith. “We believe our viewers will be the beneficiaries of new services ranging from breathtaking picture quality to in-depth emergency alerts and more personalized program content.”

Among the benefits of the new standard, according to the petition:

  • Broadcast programming with multiple consumer-friendly features, such as interactivity and personalized audio, which exceed those available through the current broadcast standard.
  • Seamless integration of broadcast programming with other Internet Protocol (IP) services, with the ability to provide state-of-the-art security that content owners depend upon.
  • Advanced emergency alert information backed up with live, professional reporters and connecting public safety officials with the public.
  • Datacasting that will offer a new broadband data pipe into the home, thereby giving content providers another means for distributing large video and other digital files to consumers, and providing enhanced opportunities for essential public services including education and public safety.
  • The ability to geo-target news, weather and other programming to better serve the public.

ATSC 3.0 capabilities will be demonstrated at next week’s NAB Show in Las Vegas. Check back with ETCentric for more NAB news as it unfolds.