I agree with Craig except for the statement that it is not the modulation today. If we had a working modulation today, that is worked mobile and fixed like the better COFDM based modulations, we would also have today that 30 channel OTA offering and more. We would have a number of new innovative OTA services like the IP based datacasting service we proposed in early 1998. We and others would be delivering non real time content to storage devices in your TV set, your cell phone and probably your Ipod. We would be delivering HD, ED and SD with ED becoming a bigger part of the mix by now. Real time would be limited to sports and news shows in prime time or whenever they happened. Much of the content would be free. Much of it would be PPV and some of it would be by subscription though the difference between PPV and subscription would be little. Can you imagine the stampede by manufacturers to get into this market if a COFDM modulation was OKed? Even back in 1999 we were wined and dined by every manufacturer we approached who thought there was the possibility of the US switching. They all thought it was inevitable but all were afraid to speak up. Exceptions being that Nokia sent a letter to the House Subcommittee on Telecommunications during the hearings and Pace had a witness who was very polite. They all told me that they thought it was inevitable that the US would change and that they could only get in trouble by speaking up. The US would have more OTA receivers than households today if DVB-T had been allowed in 2000. There would be 150 manufacturers of such receivers and 1000 or more different models or devices that could receive it. OTA would be interesting and would include HD which it would have helped promote far more than the present disaster. Bob Miller On 12/12/06, Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
At 10:20 AM -0500 12/7/06, Manfredi, Albert E wrote: >Bob Miller wrote: > >> My point is absent anyone using the OTA spectrum why not >> sell it off? That is what Congress is going to be thinking >> after the analog turnoff and all the media attention is >> focused on the pathetic numbers that will be very public >> then about who is using OTA DTV. > >As an actual user of OTA and HDTV, the idea that you distort the >usership numbers downward and that the real issues with OTA TV are >hidden behind this nonsensical modulation "debate" is really getting >old. > >We have a perfect example of what ails OTA TV in the Gainesville market. >Craig says 93 percent cable penetration. Gee, what a surpise. They don't >even provide the major networks OTA. Is it really that hard to figure >out why Gainesville TV customers don't care much about their ATSC tuner? Gainesville is a small television market, adjacent (but not close enough) to three major television markets (Jacksonville, Orlando and Tampa). There are good reasons that we do not have local affiliates for all of the major networks. The main reason is that the major network affiliates in adjacent markets were able to expand their markets by cutting deals with Cox cable to import them. We only got CBS when Channel 4 in Jacksonville dropped their affiliation agreement with CBS, and WESH in Orlando (NBC) has a deal that prevents NBC from signing up an affiliate here - they have microwave links to get their signals to Ocala and Gainesville from Orlando. Actually, our situation is not that different than yours, but for a few miles difference. You have the unique benefit of being close to two Major TV markets, so you get multiple versions of the major networks. The reality, however is that most of the programming you get is duplicated, so while you can claim access to many more channels, in reality the only major difference is that you get NBC OTA and we can't. You may get a few additional independents as well, but frankly, I don't watch most of the network crap when it is first run, much less watching 24/7 re-runs. Bob is right on the mark in terms of his analysis of the U.S. OTA market- you are a buggy whip Bert, not the average U.S. TV consumer. Bert is correct that the core issue here is not "modulation." people have abandoned NTSC in droves, and it basically works. Broadcasters do not need to be competitive with cable and DBS because they rely on cable and DBS to reach their viewers, and get paid extra for reaching their viewers in this manner. Everyone winds, except for Bert (and the rest of the laggards), who choose not to pay extra for TV. Perhaps there is a better way to explain this... Bert claims to be satisfied with the programming choices he has - no need for additional specialty channels. So I have a great "test" for Bert. Let's change the business model for the U.S. OTA service, providing real competition for cable and DBS - at least 30 unique channels with most of the popular cable networks. Then we can give Bert several special receivers that are hard wired so that he can only get the OTA channels he can receive today. Do you think that Bert will complain that he cannot access the new channels that virtually everyone else watches (the 85% factor)? After all, he doesn't know what he is missing... Maybe what we need to do is chip in together and give Bert a free three month trial of cable. This might help bring him into the 21st century, and gain an appreciation (and perhaps desire) for a broader spectrum of content. Now to the crux of the matter. If we did as I suggest, "modulation" WOULD become a significant issue. Why? Because people might actually use the new service - as they are doing in droves in the UK. When people start using the OTA service they will expect it to work. The broadcasters will want it to work, and they will want to use the spectrum more efficiently (i.e. SFN's), so that they can offer even more choice to improve their competitive position relative to cable and DBS. So Bert, you are correct that modulation is not the problem today. It is the problem that must be solved if OTA is to survive as a competitive service. Regards Craig ---------------------------------------------------------------------- You can UNSUBSCRIBE from the OpenDTV list in two ways: - Using the UNSUBSCRIBE command in your user configuration settings at FreeLists.org - By sending a message to: opendtv-request@xxxxxxxxxxxxx with the word unsubscribe in the subject line.
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