[opendtv] French HDTV developments

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Fri, 25 Jul 2008 18:04:46 -0400


Yesterday the French CSA issued a status of HDTV over the French DTT
network (that they call TNT).

The most interesting news is that as of 1 December 2008, all TV sets and
recording devices labeled as HDTV must incorporate a receiver capable of
HDTV TNT reception. HDTV in France, and Norway apparently, uses H.264
and DVB-T. There has been no mention of DVB-T2.

The report goes on to say that the full effect of this law will be
realized in time, because by the end of this year, they expect that the
majority of TVs sold will be HDTVs, and by 2010, virtually all will be.

Another point they make in this report is that the 2007 two-stream HDTV
transmissions over the experimental multiplex (multiplex R5) in Paris,
Lyon, and Marseilles, suggested that a third HDTV stream could also be
made to fit in the HDTV multiplex. This will occur starting the end of
October 2008. Two commercial networks and a public TV network, over this
multiplex R5.

Then, this year, the CSA has allowed a fourth HDTV stream to be
transmitted over the R4 SDTV multiplex, and a pay channel to convert to
HDTV on SDTV multiplex R3. And the CSA inquired about other nets on the
TNT that want to convert to HDTV. They say that there's no room on the
TNT for additional HDTV channels, but it is feasible to inquire about
conversion from SD to HD.

Wow. We'll see how this ambitious conversion to HDTV goes. I wouldn't
expect SDTV broadcasters to jump at the opportunity to *convert* to HDTV
because, obviously, that would guarantee a loss of viewership in the
short term. But clearly, the CSA sees its DTT evolving into a mixed SDTV
and HDTV system, without depending on SD and HD simulcasts, much as it
is here.

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