Advanced Television

SK Telecom 5G-ATSC 3.0 mobile demo success

June 4, 2019

Korean cellco SK Telecom, together with Sinclair Broadcast Group and Harman International Industries, has successfully demonstrated next-generation TV broadcasting by combining ATSC 3.0-based broadcast network and SK Telecom’s 5G network.

ATSC 3.0 is a suite of new broadcast TV transmission standards that deliver not only UHD video and improved audio, but also enables targeted advertising and advanced emergency alerting. ATSC 3.0, which works over the air, can also be converged with mobile networks to create a broadcast-broadband hybrid stream. Since broadcast TV is a one-way signal, broadcasters will be able to enhance customer experience by combining ATSC 3.0 with mobile networks that support two-way data communication.

SK Telecom has demonstrated two-way media services by interconnecting 5G network and ATSC 3.0 broadcast network to Harman’s in-car infotainment system for the first time. The company showed different kinds of advertisements playing on each of the three in-car screens while the car was running. The 5G network is the enabler of this highly-targeted advertising as it can recognize the user of each screen. To date, terrestrial TV viewers are provided with the same advertisement. However, with the adoption of this solution, the US broadcasting industry will be able to expand the broadcasting advertising market and improve viewer convenience and benefits. In addition, upon entering a specific zone, the vehicle automatically received live traffic and popular restaurant information updates via the ATSC 3.0 network.

Meanwhile, SK Telecom showcased its multi-view service, which enables users to watch terrestrial sports broadcasting from many different angles simultaneously. Here, the ATSC 3.0 network transmits video taken by the main camera, while the 5G network streams live feeds from other cameras for multi-view display.

The joint venture company between SK Telecom and Sinclair Broadcast Group now expects to create more opportunities in the ATSC 3.0 market in the US. With the intention of providing ATSC 3.0 solution to 191 broadcasting stations of Sinclair Broadcast Group, the joint venture company will first provide the solution to 32 Sinclair broadcasting stations by 2020.

It is projected that all US broadcasting stations will migrate to ATSC 3.0 over the next decade. SK Telecom, together with Sinclair Broadcast Group and other major US broadcasting companies, is set to play a leading role in accelerating the adoption of ATSC 3.0 and become a major solution provider in the US market.

“In the era of autonomous driving, we will witness a fierce competition in the in-car media service market,” said Park Jin-hyo, Chief Technology Officer and Head of ICT R&D Center of SK Telecom. “Armed with 5G media technologies, SK Telecom will secure a competitive edge in the next-generation broadcasting market in the US and gradually expand its business in the global markets.”

“With this announcement, Sinclair is continuing to partner with market leaders to further develop next-gen broadcasting solutions,” said Chris Ripley, President and CEO of Sinclair Broadcast Group. “We are excited to be working with Harman and SK Telecom, two prominent international technology leaders, to progress 5G connected ATSC 3.0 automotive solutions and experience. This collaboration focuses on developing key mobility enhancements of ATSC 3.0 and 5G as a potential value creator for Sinclair and other US broadcasters.”

Meanwhile, in January 2019, SK Telecom, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Harman entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to work together to provide market leading technology and grow market share in the US market.

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