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Report Lists New Mobile TV Services

Washington — The Open Mobile Video Coalition (OMVC) released a report on Wednesday detailing new levels of services using non-real-time content broadcasters can deploy over the Mobile TV system.

A standard for delivery of non-real-time content, recently finalized by the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), broadens the scope of Mobile TV by allowing viewers to preload favorite shows into the memory of a mobile device for playback later, among other uses.

“This is a natural evolution of the Mobile TV standard,” explained Sterling Davis, the OMVC’s Technical Advisory Group (OTAG) chairman. “Storing programs in memory, clipcasting, digital signage, video-on-demand [VOD] and micro-websites are ways for the broadcast industry to improve the array of services provided to users of Mobile TV. These are examples of Mobile TV functionality that we have outlined in the use case document,” Davis added.

Clipcasting would consist of short-form video and audio clips, similar to podcasts that are broadcast periodically by the broadcaster and captured in the consumer’s device. 

The viewer would select from Clipcast Services in a preference menu and be alerted when new content is available.

Clips are tagged with title and metadata information.  The Mobile TV standard supports the ability to do both subscription-based and advertiser-supported clipcasting, with content automatically refreshed and deleted if not played in a timely manner or when a newer version has been captured.  Viewer measurement and ad targeting are also possible.

VOD from TV broadcasters would allow the user to choose content that will be transmitted to a Mobile TV device and stored on that device for later viewing. Content might include short-form videos, sports or news programs; standard-length TV shows and movies; and articles, e-books and even video games.

Mobile TV can also deliver data to populate micro-website pages, viewable on the portable device.

Information can be broadcast to populate a station’s micro site without having to rely on traditional Internet connectivity.

Digital signage is supported by Mobile TV as digital signs in public transportation offering local news, advertising, weather and other information delivered by local TV stations.

Mobile TV has other applications and could be used to deliver software updates to devices or to manage centralized utility or local government needs by remote transmission.

The ATSC is now completing standardization of a Mobile Emergency Alert System via Mobile TV.

The system would deliver headline overlays as warnings, rich media transmissions such as video or weather updates, and specific instructions during weather emergencies or other homeland security situations.

Both the real-time and non-real-time capability of the Mobile TV standard would augment existing emergency alert mechanisms used by TV broadcasters and mobile network operators.