The U.S. Department of Telecommunications (DoT) and Prasar Bharati, India’s public service broadcaster, are investigating the viability of a technology that would enable video and other forms of multimedia content to be broadcasted directly to mobile phones, bypassing the requirement that these devices have an active internet connection.
The technology, which is known as “direct-to-mobile” (D2M) broadcasting, has the potential to enhance the utilization of spectrum as well as the consumption of broadband.
What exactly is meant by the term “direct-to-mobile broadcasting”?
Mobile phones will be able to receive terrestrial digital TV as a result of this technology, which is founded on the convergence of broadcast and broadband. It would be very similar to the way that people listen to FM radio on their phones, which involves a receiver that is built into the phone and has the ability to tap into radio frequencies. With the help of D2M, multimedia content can also be transmitted directly to users’ phones.
The concept driving the development of this technology is that it has the potential to be used to directly broadcast content that is focused on citizen-centric information. Additionally, it has the potential to be used to combat the spread of fake news, issue emergency alerts, and assist in the management of disasters, among other applications. In addition to that, it can be utilized to broadcast live events such as news, sports, and other types of programming onto mobile phones. In addition to this, the content should stream in its entirety without any buffering of any kind and without consuming any internet data.
What kind of effects could this have on both businesses and customers?
For consumers, this kind of technology would mean that they would be able to access multimedia content from platforms that provide Video on Demand (VoD) or Over The Top (OTT) content without having to use up all of their mobile data, and, what’s more important, for a fee that was not prohibitively expensive. People living in rural areas, where internet access may be limited or nonexistent, will also be able to watch video content thanks to this technology.
One of the primary advantages of the technology is that it enables telecom service providers to offload video traffic from their mobile network onto the broadcast network, which in turn assists them in decongesting valuable mobile spectrum. This is one of the primary benefits that the technology offers to businesses. This will also improve the utilization of mobile spectrum and free up bandwidth, both of which will help reduce the number of call drops that occur and increase data transfer speeds, among other benefits.
What steps is the government taking to make the D2M technology more accessible?
DoT Secretary K Rajaraman announced on Wednesday that the department’s Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has established a committee to investigate the viability of a spectrum band for directly offering broadcast services to users’ smartphones. The DoT committee will study whether or not such a band is possible. “It is anticipated that band 526-582 MHz will work in conjunction with broadcast services as well as mobile services. According to him, DoT has established a committee with the mission of researching this band. At the moment, TV transmitters located all over the nation make use of this band, which is allocated for that purpose by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.
The public broadcaster Prasar Bharati had announced the previous year that it would be collaborating with the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur to investigate the viability of the technology.
What are some potential obstacles that could arise during the rollout of the technology?
The CEO of Prasar Bharati stated that bringing key stakeholders onboard, such as mobile operators, will be the “biggest challenge” in launching D2M technology on a wide scale, despite the fact that the technology is still in its infancy stage. A mass roll out of the technology will require changes to be made to the infrastructure as well as some changes to the regulatory framework, according to Apurva Chandra, the Secretary of the Information and Broadcasting Ministry.
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