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Wednesday, 25 January 2006 04:27

Another contender for broadcasting TV to mobiles

IPWireless has announced technology claimed to enable mobile operators to use existing unpaired 3G spectrum to broadcast video to mobile phones.

TDtv combines IPWireless' commercial UMTS TD-CDMA technology and the newly defined 3GPP Release 6 Multimedia Broadcast and Multicast Standard (MBMS) and is claimed to offer operators "a number of significant strategic, performance, and economic advantages over alternative mobile TV solutions [such as DVB-H and Qualcomm's Flo]."

The company says that a number of operators around the world have already committed to pilot the TDtv solution in the first half of 2006.

TDtv operates in the universal unpaired 3G spectrum bands that are available across Europe and Asia at 1900MHz and 2010MHz. IPWireless says that several operators in Europe are expected to announce TDtv trials in their 1900MHz unpaired 3G spectrum during the first half of this year.

In most jurisdictions the unpaired spectrum was sold with the 3G spectrum. Australia was one of the few countries to licence it separately and Personal Broadband Australia (iBurst), rather than the cellular operators, holds this spectrum in all the main metropolitan areas.

In Japan, IPMobile plans to trial the technology for their services in their recently awarded 2010MHz spectrum. The solution will also be made available to operators in the other frequency bands that IPWireless supports globally, including the 2.5GHz band.

TDtv is claimed to deliver up to 50 channels of TV for standard mobile phone screens, or 15 higher quality QVGA channels, within the 5MHz band. TDtv "leverages MBMS to allow an infinite number of customers to watch the same channel or use the same network bandwidth." Operators can also deliver digital audio or other IP data cast services to enhance their service offerings.

IPWireless says it is partnering to integrate TDtv into existing WCDMA devices at very low cost. "Initial two-chip TD-CDMA/WCMDA handsets or larger screen devices will be able to reuse much of the WCDMA RF to lower cost and reduce size. Ultimately, TDtv will be integrated into WCDMA chipsets. Because TD-CDMA can reuse many of the existing WCDMA stacks, this adds a very minimal cost to the device."

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