[opendtv] Re: Fw: Re: Post on alt.tv.tech.hdtv of interest today

  • From: "Manfredi, Albert E" <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: "OpenDTV (E-mail)" <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Mon, 11 Apr 2005 11:28:32 -0400

Craig Birkmaier wrote:

> Agreed. But PORTABILITY is a major consideration for
> WiFi networks.

Agreed. And it should also be a consideration for DTT. Just
as it has been with analog TV around the world. I've
certainly never suggested that DTT should rely only on
large, high gain, fixed antennas.

By the way, just as a point of comparison, I read an
article in EE Times not long ago that said that to cover
the area or NYC completely, with Wi-Fi signals, would take
"tens of thousands" of access points. And similarly,
Verizon uses "about 1000" cell towers to cover NYC.

So this is the tradeoff to consider.

> While TV and driving do not mix well, there is no reason
> to limit the transmission system to fixed receivers. We
> do not do this today with NTSC.

Not sure what you're saying here. NTSC in moving vehicles
is awful. Possible, but awful. Even if DTT in moving
vehicles were not possible, we wouldn't have given up much
compared with analog TV. And I'm not saying ATSC in moving
vehicles isn't possible.

> While you (and Doug and Bob T) may find the ability to
> receive distant stations useful, in most cases there is
> little expansion of choice...mostly duplication of the
> same programming.

But we've been over this already. As Bob T explained,
content is not always duplicated. Also, reception of
distant stations becomes mandatory in large markets, for
ubiquitous coverage. Sometimes you have no choice but to
pull in a distant station. This whole idea of "local
stations" has to be tempered with reality. If you live in
Elkton, MD, where are your "local stations"?

> By the way, with such a system it is likely that you
> would always have access to those important network
> shows. The network affiliate relationship is crumbling
> anyway.

As you know, I have no problem with a system of national
networks. In that event, people would use whatever signal
comes in stronger, which is mostly what I do now anyway.
National networks make the idea of "local station"
irrelevant. "Local station" *can* become simply the most
accessible repeater or translator. Where it makes sense,
a region might have a more autonomous local station, from
which the regional news is originated. In a country the
size of the US, there would be quite a few of these
regional hubs in every OTA network.

> With the spectrum utility idea, the networks will be
> able to bid directly for access to your market.

No need. Networks bid for spectrum. With DTT even more
than now, these networks can each act as a mini utility.
If someone comes up with content that is more lucrative
than infomercials, the mini-utility can air that content
instead of the infomercials they seem to love now. With
DTT, this alternative content can even be aired during
prime time, alongside their own shows, if the extra
content does not compete directly with the network's own
fare. And if these independent content providers become
wealthy enough, with NTSC shut off, they might be able
to acquire a 6 MHz slice of their own.

> IF there is a good business reason to continue an
> affiliate relationship in your market, then the station
> and network can bid together.

In my model, if there's a reason to continue the
relationship, the network will continue the relationship.
Without having to deal with another middleman. I'd say
that PBS does a very good job at airing content from
multiple sources, mixing local and network-wide content,
and all without a spectrum utility.

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