IP Datacast Test Network Launched In Helsinki
10 September 2002
RTT Oy (Radio- ja Televisiotekniikan Tutkimus), the Finnish research firm, that focuses on radio and television technology has launched an IP Datacast (IPDC) test network in Helsinki, Finland.
The research will be conducted by the leading media houses, teleoperators and network technology companies in Finland. The test network will allow for the possibility to broadcast IP data to mobile terminals with high speed, even 12 Mbit/s, by using television broadcasting technology.
The IPDC network enables the wireless high speed transmission of data services to large audiences simultaneously even when the terminals are moving. Sending mobile data to several or all customers at the same time is part of the evolution that digital television technology and the powerful use of frequencies enables. Mobile data can be seen as one potential form of services when preparing the national and international legislations and use of frequencies.
By way of the test network, RTT is testing IPDC technology and services with different kinds of terminals, beginning with PCs and additional equipment connected to them. Actual mobile terminals containing IPDC technology are not yet commercially available. Because the broadcasting being used in this research is based on IP data, the services cannot be received with the regular digi-tv receivers designed for watching television but rather, for the time-being, a separate special receiver is required to receive the IP Datacast signal.
In addition to the Finnish case, research into IPDC technology and services is also being conducted in a number of other countries. Examples of typical services are: Internet based video streaming that can currently be done with a laptop, or the simultaneous transmission of files to many receivers, such as online newspapers, games, video and voice files, computer software.
The new RTT test network covers a big part of the Helsinki downtown area within a few kilometres radius. There are also four ‘gap-fillers’ with a few kilometres reach placed around Helsinki. When receiving data with a fixed device, the operating range can be the approximately the same as in the digi-tv network — around 50 kilometers. In a network designed for mobile receiving, the operating radius of one transmitter can only be a few kilometres.
RTT has rented the test network and the technology from one of its members, Digita Oy, and has purchased the server system for the transmission from Nokia. The costs for the test system are low and the trial will be for three years. There are similar terrestrial IPDC test networks in use for Germany and plans for similar tests exist in some other European countries as well.
The IPDC project, led by RTT Oy, has participation from the companies mentioned below. RTT Oy is a non-profit institution owned by Nokia, Sonera, Teleste and Yleisradio. Tekes, the National Technology Agency, has partially financed the research activities of RTT Oy and thus the research work related to the IPDC test network.
RTT Oy Ari Ikonen
RTT Oy ja Yleisradio Oy Martti Saarelma
Alma Media Oyj / MTV3 Oy Juha Mustonen
Digita Oy Esko Huuhka
Elisa Communications Oyj Pauli Kuosmanen
Nokia Ventures Organization Communications
Sonera Oyj Pekka Pesari
SWelcom Oy Eskoensio Pipatti
Teleste Oyj Petri Sainio
Yleisradio Oy Kalevi Rantala