[opendtv] Re: Freeview realities

  • From: "Bob Miller" <robmxa@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Thu, 16 Nov 2006 10:49:35 -0500

On 11/16/06, Barry Wilkins <barry.barrywilkins@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
I have listened and commented from time to time on this fascinating COFDM
versus 8 VSB debate and so it is apparent to me that there is a lot of deep
feeling about the issue, the evidence being there still IS a debate after
all this time (I've been reading this list for at least 5 years and I'm not
involved in broadcasting).

If, as you say Bob, "the reality in the US is virtually no one is even
interested in
OTA. Retailers, consumers and broadcasters are all showing little to no
interest in OTA." then what is the point of this discussion? Who IS
interested?

Aren't the broadcasters happy to piggyback off the cable companies?. Are the
consumers unhappy?

I am interested and others would be if we had the right tools. Big
problem is that broadcasters are "happy to piggyback". That is the
source of the problem, the indifference of broadcasters because they
do not depend on OTA broadcasting. Consumers are not happy with the
cost of cable and satellite IMO. That is if offered a real competitive
product many would opt for it.

Before UK started their DTV transition most predicted that the
commercial endeavor would be a flop. I predicted it would be wildly
successful. It was until it went under because of bad business
decisions. When its successor, Freeview, took over the pundits again
said it would be a failure. I again said it would be wildly
successful. It has been incredibly successful from day one.

When Sirius and XMRadio started I predicted super success for the same
reasons. I do have my doubts about Qualcomm and Crown Castle's OTA to
cell phone ventures in the US because of their concentration on cell
phones but they don't have to sell to a high percentage to do OK and
they could be incredibly successful IMO in the short run.

HiWire's offering if they ever get it off the ground is more like it.
They will use 12 MHz to go after the regular TV market but will be
receivable mobile and portable also. That is TV where ever you are
when ever you want it at a decent resolution. If they figure out how
to buildout this will be incredibly successful IMO. It is what we
wanted/want to do but can't because of 8-VSB. It is simple,
ubuiquitous reception with inexpensive receivers that will work in a
cell phone, laptop or TV set in our bedroom or boat. Then you can
decide whether you charge for it, offer it free or a combination.
Combo sounds right to me.

Modulation and codec are central. How to build the network is second.

Bob Miller


If the debate is concentrated to the purely technical it is quite clear the
issue has been well and truely decided and not in favour of ATSC.

That leaves all the political and commercial influence coupled with the
inability of the general public to know, let alone comment on, what is good
for them. So the public gets a system that may not be on further
consideration the best technical choice. Those who do not agree with this
point argue against the technical and commercial opinion of practically all
of the rest of the world's countries.

AGREED!

Of course this is all regrettable from the view of informed consumers in
many countries because had the USA embraced a very attractive technology
from a global perspective, it would have benefited us all in economies of
scale, the USA included.

With China coming on strong, having the best modulation and being the
place where most TV sets are made I believe they will make all
modulation discussions moot in a few years.

It is interesting to speculate if this debate will still be rageing in
another 5 years time.

It is only happening in the US and only because we made a bad choice.
Even with the bad choice if 8-VSB was minimally acceptable it would be
doing great. It may still do so. I hope not. I hope we get wise and
update sooner rather than later. I hope patches like A-VSB don't
prolong the agony.

Bob Miller

Barry Wilkins

On 11/16/06, Bob Miller < robmxa@xxxxxxxxx> wrote:
> It is not just that we don't have many STBs for sale here. You can say
> that most people want an integrated set.
>
> No
>
>
> In many other countries OTA is very much alive and GROWING.
>
> Bob Miller
>
> On 11/15/06, John Shutt <shuttj@xxxxxxxxx > wrote:
> > ----- Original Message -----
> > From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
> > To: < opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> > Sent: Wednesday, November 15, 2006 1:17 PM
> > Subject: [opendtv] Re: Freeview realities
> >
> >
> > > John Shutt wrote:
> > >
> > >> Choice of modulation is what allows Australia, a country of
> > >> 20 million people, to have "80 models of STBs for sale" while
> > >> we have almost none in ATSC.
> > >
> > > The funny thing is, in spite of all the evidence of global decoder
> > > chipsets, global tuners, and easily integrated 8-VSB demods, is that
you
> > > and Bob continue to believe that the reason for this is the modulation
> > > standard.
> > >
> > > How about, just for example, if the difference were that in Australia,
> > > the retailers are willing to market these boxes, while in the US, the
> > > retailers are encouraged to hide them? That's just a conspiracy theory
> > > example, but it illustrates that JUST MAYBE, it has nothing to do with
> > > modulation?
> > >
> > > Or just maybe, US consumers are truly unwilling to use OTA TV, whereas
> > > consumers in Australia know it exists?
> >
> > Bert, Occam's razor.  Australia has a ton of boxes.  They're a DVB
country.
> > Italy has tons of boxes.  They're a DVB country.  The UK has tons of
boxes,
> > too.  They are a DVB country.  The United States has very few boxes.
They
> > are an ATSC country.
> >
> > John
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
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