back to article DVB-H is the official mobile-TV standard

Brussels has now officially endorsed DVB-H as the mobile TV technology of choice in Europe. This means that member states are now required to "encourage" use of the technology, though the commission has no advice as to how to encourage punters to tune in. The ruling is no surprise - as it was proposed in July last year and got …


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  1. EmperorFromage

    Will only work in Germany

    From what rumors I picked up at MWC it seems that the DVB-H pushers will move traditional access control mechanism from satellite TV smart cards and stick them in the cellphone SIM. There are a couple of problems with this approach though.

    1) Punters will not want pay a full subscription for a service they use 5 minutes every 3 months.

    2) Watching TV while roaming is out.

    For this reasons DVB-H will only work in Germany, where consumers have enjoyed free satellite TV since the inception. Thus asking punters to pay a subscription fee is out of the question, and DVB-H will have a modest chance of seeing any uptake.

  2. Christian Berger

    Business model?

    What's the use for a business model? People pay the TV-tax and the Beep gives them programming. Simple, isn't it.

    Keep in mind it's television.

  3. auser

    There are two technologies here...

    This is the case of broadcast tv versus ip tv. The first offers a more limited choice of channels but it's free for everyone. The second offers everything but can be controlled by the network operator, who can (and will) charge money for content. So the first is limited and the second is expensive. Imho, the best would be to give broadband access to everyone and let them download whatever they want from the internet. Of course this would be less profitable for big mobile network operators, but good for everyone else. (and you don't need new standards or protocols for that, imho the web is just good enough)

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    Call me a luddite...

    ...but TV on a phone is a waste of time fad. Flame away...

    Paris 'cause she'd want one (and that says it all really)

  5. paul


    Isn't DVB-H one of the excuses the money grabbers at Off-com have for not giving the old analog TV siginal back to DVB-T (freeview)?

  6. Steve
    Thumb Down


    Handheld TVs have been around since the days of Clive Sinclair, and Casio LCD ones are as cheap as MP3 players.

    Do any of you know anyone who has one?

    No, nor do I. Apart from an apparent desire to watch Sky News presenters getting overexcited over the increasing bodycount next time some tw@t jumps a red signal, what makes the phone companies think this will be a success? It's just another case of the technology driving the product, and it will be just as expensive a flop as usually happens in such cases.

  7. Ben Bradley
    Thumb Down

    Waste of space

    Waste of valuable data space in the spectrum if you ask me.

    The only time I would vaguely be interested in mobile TV would be whilst commuting in mornings and evenings.

    So mobile TV would deliver me... This Morning, Animal Park, Neighbours, Richard & Judy etc? Pfft.

    Sports news? Perhaps. But the BBC WAP site is excellent.

    I have a PSP so I can shove anything I want to watch on there and watch it.

    Make mobile providers charge less for their data packages instead, now that's a good idea!

  8. Daniel Bell

    What about TDTV?

    My understanding is that TDTV is a better option, Brussels may be pushing DVB-H but Nokia are piloting TDTV with Next Wave Wireless Networks here in London so I guess the Fins have a better Idea!

    TDTV makes more sense (for the operators) it has a wider spectrum 10mhz as oposed to DVB-H's 8mhz and can therefore support 28 channels to DVB-H's 16.

    Furthermore less people are in the value chain so more cash for those that are......although I agree why would people use it? Ipod Videos are availible and I would say 1 person per carriage uses them to watch a film on my tain from waterloo each evening.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Oh, just bloody fabulous... @Christian Berger

    I don't have a TV license. I don't want one. I don't watch TV. By your reasoning I should now pay TV Licenses their mob-protection-money, just because I have a TV-capable phone (why on earth I'd want to watch TV on a tiny 2" screen is beyond me).

  10. dervheid



    I'd not be tempted in the slightest to have a phone with TV access, just don't see it as enhancing my life in any way. I do commute, but have to drive, so NFU there; have more than adequate TV at home, so NFU there.

    Oh, and I HAVE A LIFE!

    Rather have a phone with more practical features, like GPS. Not vital, but a damn site handier than daytime TV!

  11. Mage


    Use it for Radio, instead of DAB.

    It works very well for Radio. More sense Mobile while walking, cycling or driving.

  12. Jared Earle


    Why should we care about a costly broadcast infrastructure when we have video on demand through the magic of iTunes, BitTorrent or Handbrake? I'm not alone in watching movies/TV on a PSP/iPod/iPhone/whatever while commuting, and you can pause TV-on-Demand when you change transport vectors.

    The sooner we realise we won, the better.

  13. Ian Michael Gumby


    I actually happen to have a B&W LCD TV that's something like 20 years old.

    Got it as a present from my brother. Its sitting in a drawer somewhere.

    Came in handy when you were sitting somewhere that you *had* to be, but wanted to catch the game.

  14. John Latham

    Pointless and anachronistic

    Presumably this will just give us live TV. Which is only necessary for breaking news and sports events. But ball sports will be unwatchable on a tiny screen, and news is better delivered using a web/RSS browser.

    Video on a small device is fine (and a good entertainment alternative to a laptop for times when you can't get a seat on a train and don't have a book), but given that mobile devices can be had with multi-GB storage I wonder whether this whole broadcast mobile TV thing has missed it's window of usefulness.

    Better to focus efforts on STB/PVR/flash memory integration to deliver convenient access to timeshifted content.

    If I was Sky I'd be working with Nokia etc al to deliver Sky+ branded multimedia phones which sync with a STB over wifi. Mark selected programmes in the EPG as "Sync with mobile" and have the content pushed to your phone overnight while you sleep and your phone charges. Mind you, if Anytime on PC is anything to go by, it would crash your phone regularly and purge the content before you'd had a chance to watch it.


  15. Macoute

    Maybe read the document before getting excited

    DVB-H is now on a list of standards that EU states have to encourage. This listing only covers mobile TV over broadcast networks, not mobile TV over 3G so should 3G operators be worried?

  16. Simon Brown

    Surely there's an easier way

    Do we really need a specific DVB format for mobile phones?

    Surely it would be simpler to create a suitable chip to go inside mobiles that can receive and decode current DVB-T broadcasts?

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