HbbTV set for commercial launch

From Colin Mann in London

Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV (HbbTV) devices are likely to be launched commercially at the end of the summer, according to Thomas Wrede, VP Product Management Media at SES Astra. The HbbTV initiative is aimed at harmonising the broadcast and broadband delivery of entertainment to the end consumer through connected TVs and set-top boxes.

Wrede told delegates at the Broadcast and Beyond Conference that hybrid flat screen TVs were already available. In the short term, there would be implementation of an HbbTV standard by standards body ETSI, followed by the development of test beds for devices. “There will be a consumer market introduction in September at the IFA consumer electronics trade fair in Berlin,” he said.

He noted that Humax and Videoweb both had conformant products and that at the recent ANGA Cable trade fair in Cologne, 12 manufacturers exhibited HbbTV devices, with another six working on product introduction. There will come onto the market between June 2010 and the first quarter of 2011,” he predicted.

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