German DVB-I partners recommend second phase for pilot

The German DVB-I Pilot, which ran from September 2022 to March 2023, aimed to develop a common view on the technical features of the DVB-I standard and on the opportunities and challenges for the German television market. The initiative involved 21 stakeholders from the media industry, including broadcasters, device manufacturers, software providers and research institutions.

A report published this week summarizes the results and contains recommendations for a second phase to consolidate outstanding points ahead of a possible market launch.

“Against the background of the successful “DVB-I German Pilot”, the broad support from the broadcasting industry and the positive national and international feedback, the members recommend an additional phase 2 in order to consolidate outstanding points for a possible market launch in Germany. Phase 2 could start at IBC 2023 and the pilot could be continued in its current organizational form for a limited period of time.”

From chapter 7 of the Phase 1 Report on the German DVB-I Pilot

The report explains why the stakeholders chose to embark on the project, testing DVB-I as a potential solution to the challenge of preparing for the future shift to pure internet-based distribution of television programming. Remo Vogel (rbb), project manager for the pilot, said that many expectations had been fulfilled.

The aggregation of the service lists of the participating broadcasting families into a central service list was successfully realised and presented on first prototypical TV devices and mobile apps,” he said. “The switching from broadcast to IP when disconnecting the TV sets from the broadcast network, moderate switching times between the IP streams as well as the fast integration of services such as HbbTV, content guides, playlists, DRM [digital rights management] sign-in, dynamically added event channels and Next Generation Audio were impressive.

Phase 2 plans

The report states that the current partners are collecting topics for a possible Phase 2 and mentions that there have already been requests from other manufacturers to participate.

Among the issues that could be addressed in a second phase are questions related to the administrative and regulatory frameworks that would be required for a possible DVB-I market launch, technical challenges related to service list updates, for example with special event channels, and concepts for DRM support in clients. Other areas for investigation include satellite parameters for tuning without an internet connection, new use cases like the use of playlists, and possible personalization and audience measurement concepts. The role of platform operators would also be considered.

The report is available in German and English from the DVB-I website.

New video from DVB Project

The publication of the report on the German DVB-I Pilot coincided with the release, by the DVB Project, of a video explaining the benefits of DVB-I.

(Automated subtitle translations are available via the YouTube video settings.)