ATSC 3.0 To Explore Next-Gen TV Standards

The new ATSC 3.0 Technology Group — TG3 — is designed to develop broadcast specifications for a range of new services including Internet-enhanced broadcasting and non-real-time and 3D broadcast standards, as well as ongoing support for the ATSC mobile DTV standard.

The Advanced Television Systems Committee Inc. (ATSC) has formed a new technology group to develop “ATSC 3.0,” a series of voluntary technical standards and recommended practices for the next-generation digital terrestrial television broadcast system that would serve viewers and TV stations for decades to come.

“ATSC 3.0 is a crucial long-term project that paves the way for futuristic terrestrial television broadcasting technologies,” said ATSC President Mark Richer.  “As we look to the horizon, the ATSC will be exploring technologies that perhaps haven’t even been invented yet.”

Because ATSC 3.0 is likely to be incompatible with current broadcast systems, it must provide improvements in performance, functionality and efficiency significant enough to warrant implementation of a non-backwards-compatible system, according Richer.  Interoperability with production systems and non-broadcast distribution systems should be considered by the new technology group, he explained.

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“The future of broadcast television is bright, both for the near- and long-term,” said Richer, referring to current work on ATSC 2.0, which includes Internet-enhanced broadcasting and non-real-time (NRT) and 3D broadcast standards, as well as ongoing support for the ATSC mobile DTV standard.

Formation of the new ATSC 3.0 Technology Group, called “TG3,” will allow the ATSC Technology & Standards Group (now called “TG1”), chaired by Dr. Richard Chernock of Triveni Digital, to accelerate its current activities including development of ATSC 2.0, NRT, 3D and mobile DTV.  TG3 was recommended by the ATSC Board of Directors in July and adopted by the membership on Sept 2.

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ATSC Board Chairman, Samsung VP John Godfrey, has appointed James Kutzner as TG3 chairman.  Kutzner, senior director of advanced technology for the Public Broadcasting Service, chaired the ATSC 3.0 Planning Team for the past year. At PBS, Kutzner manages engineering  and technology projects. An ATSC board member, SMPTE fellow and IEEE member, he also is vice chairman of the Open Mobile Video Coalition’s Technical Advisory Group.

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Chris Stone says:

September 6, 2011 at 6:54 pm

My real question has to be what I see as the obvious: Is our digital tv system so poorly developed that the “next generation” is not even compatible with what we are currently broadcasting??? How many times do they expect broadcasters–and the public—to buy new equipment just to watch tv, or is this a plan, to bankrupt over-the-air broadcasting???? Must be part of the “Obama/Genochowski Broadband Plan”.

Ellen Samrock says:

September 6, 2011 at 7:18 pm

Fancy new features and gee whiz technology is nice but the ATSC Committee is going to have to focus on the reality that we broadcasters will be working with ever shrinking TV band. The question before the committee should now and always be: how can we do the same or more with less.


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