[opendtv] Re: Freeview realities

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 17 Nov 2006 11:59:57 -0500

At 10:49 AM -0500 11/16/06, Bob Miller wrote:

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.

It was neither a flop, nor widely successful. IT was simply another marketplace option for a paid subscription service. As such it was able to attract a segment of the audience. In reality it helped BSkyB, by forcing peo0ple moving from FreeTV to a paid service to make a buying decision. It was only AFTER the system became Freeview that it started taking viewers away from the paid multichannel services.

The real success of Freeview cam when a viable multichannel service was offered in the clear.



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.

There will always be room for differentiation of services when the consumer is paying for a service. There is strong debate today about what is having a greater impact on radio broadcasting...

Satellite radio or iPods.


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.


These things are all critical. We will never see a viable digital broadcast system in the U.S. until we decide to build the infrastructure properly. The starting point is to improve spectral efficiency, rather than tying up half the spectrum to prevent interference.

Regards
Craig


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