Nexstar, Sinclair In ATSC 3.0 Datacasting Push

The two station groups' goal is to promote broadcast spectrum aggregation, innovation and monetization, in anticipation of the adoption of ATSC 3.0. They say they want to include other broadcasters in the effort to compete in wireless data transmission.

Nexstar Media Group and Sinclair Broadcast Group said today that they plan to establish a consortium that will “promote spectrum aggregation, innovation and monetization and enhance their abilities to compete in the wireless data transmission sector.”

The consortium, which will be jointly owned and controlled equally by Nexstar and Sinclair, has agreed to collaborate on a non-exclusive basis and the companies said the consortium “is intent on exploring the inclusion of other television broadcasting entities.”

Nexstar and Sinclair collectively own and operate television stations reaching approximately 60% of the country.

Unlike prior industry efforts that the two say were based on flawed technology, this consortium has been established in anticipation of the adoption of the ATSC 3.0 Next Generation broadcast transmission standard. The consortium, the companies said, “will promote innovation and develop and explore products and services associated with 3.0 and monetization opportunities such as spectrum utilization, virtual MVPD platforms, multicast channels, automotive applications, single frequency networks and wireless data applications, among others.”

Upon adoption of ATSC 3.0, consumers will be able to integrate video content and data across numerous “smart” devices. With the proper technology and data gathering methodologies, Nexstar and Sinclair say they expect to capture significant and meaningful information relating to consumers’ actual viewing and consumption behaviors. “As a result, broadcasters will no longer have to rely on expensive third party measurement services with small sample sizes and unverified results.”

The value of this captured data across all Next Gen-enabled devices and their users can be monetized several ways, they say. “For advertisers, it will provide greater efficiency for their spend with elevated addressability, personalization and accountability. Similarly, broadcasters will realize greater efficiencies in reaching and monetizing a significantly larger advertising market.”


Perry A. Sook, Nexstar chairman, president and CEO, said: “We are delighted to join forces with Sinclair who has led the industry in advancing the ATSC 3.0 broadcast standard and its adoption. By establishing a formal collaborative effort to advance the promotion of spectrum utilization, innovation and monetization through ATSC 3.0, we can more quickly bring its groundbreaking benefits to broadcasters, viewers and advertisers based on the new technology’s ability to deliver targeted advertising. With the near-term conclusion of the FCC incentive auction, Nexstar and Sinclair are leading the industry in ensuring that we bring our respective shareholders appropriate value from increasingly scarce and in-demand spectrum. In addition, we welcome the involvement of other broadcasters who share our enthusiasm for the new technology which will allow our industry to continue to thrive in today’s multi-platform world.”

Chris Ripley, Sinclair President-CEO, added: “Nexstar shares our vision for broadcast standard innovation and the benefits of knowing with precise accuracy who is viewing our programming, what they’re watching and when they’re watching. Data gathering, measurement and viewer behavior are critical considerations for advertisers and our collaborative initiative will ensure that Sinclair, Nexstar and perhaps other industry participants are out of the blocks quickly once ATSC 3.0 is launched. We believe this effort will maximize the value of our programming and ad inventory while creating new cross platform revenue opportunities that will benefit our respective shareholders.”

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