Next month commemorates the two-year anniversary of Digital TV DesignLine. The subject of Digital TV could not be timelier than it is today as the analog TV transmission cut-off date is less than two years away as manufacturers have to come up with new products and chipsets that accommodate a new high definition signal standard. And, this problem is not isolated to the U.S., but it's a worldwide concern. Digital TV DesignLine covers Advanced Video Architectures, Advanced Display Technologies, DRM, Set-Top Box design, HD Recording, Voice/Data Networking among other key topics. There are other topics that are of great concern these days including the emerging areas such as Mobile TV and Internet Protocol TV.
At last week's NAB Show, which was held in Las Vegas, LG Electronics unveiled their new 6th generation ASTC Digital TV broadcast receiver chipset, which will be incorporated into all of their 2007 flat-screen televisions and digital TV receivers and set-top boxes. The DTV circuitry can decode both vestigial sideband (VSB), the North American standard for terrestrial digital over-air broadcasts, and quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM), the North American standard for digital cable broadcasts. As well, this newest chipset is designed for use in high-definition and standard-definition digital TVs, set-top boxes and computer digital TV tuner cards. It is being integrated into DTV products sold in the United States, Korea and Canada, which all use the ATSC DTV Standard. LG also plans to supply the chipset to DTV makers around the world. This one introduction alone capsulates the growth and timeliness of DTV.
According to Jupiter Research, there will be 47 million households in the United States that will have high-definition TV sets by the end of year and growing, which is up from 35 million in 2006. According to CEA, there were 13 million HDTV sold in the U.S. in 2006, and they estimate another 24 million in 2007. Many local broadcast stations are starting to convert their facilities to offer news and other local programming in high definition. As a result, consumers with HDTVs can receive high definition programming by simply using an over-the-air antenna. They can also access a station's multicast programming with any over-the-air antenna. HD is coming to cable more and more, and satellite providers like DirecTV boast the possibility of offering 150 HD channels by the end of the year. High-definition is everywhere.
Also at NAB, Mobile TV is viewing as an emerging way to view TV shows. At the start of 2006, about 2.5 million people in the United States subscribed to video service on their mobile phones (Telephia). By the end of the year that number had swollen to 6.2 million, a nearly three-fold increase, according to mobile research firm Telephia. To that end, nine of the largest U.S. television broadcast groups, which represent 280 television stations in the U.S. covering 95 million households in 49 of the top 50 markets nationwide, announced at NAB 2007 the launch of the "Open Mobile Video Coalition," an industry alliance to accelerate the development of mobile digital broadcast television. Broadcasters jointly announcing the Coalition today are: Belo Corp., Fox Television Stations, Gannett Broadcasting, Gray Television, ION Media Networks, the NBC & Telemundo Television Stations, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Tribune Broadcasting Company.
This only highlights the fact that Digital TV DesignLine has a broad appeal, and not just to engineers but to technically-savvy individuals worldwide. Readers need to be informed and have the opportunity to go to a site where they can get news, information, and learn about technology and trends. And that's what we're all about. Digital TV DesignLine is happy to celebrate its 2nd anniversary.