HDTV over Internet2

Results showed clear, seamless transmissions from a network that communicates up to 45,000 times faster than modems currently in use.

Internet protocol, commonly called IP, is something broadcasters should become familiar with, especially if the quality and utility of Internet2, a high-bandwidth network for research and educational institutions, demonstrated in two recent tests becomes standard.

At the University of Pennsylvania and the University of Grenoble in France, students put the network through its paces. Results showed clear, seamless transmissions from a network that communicates up to 45,000 times faster than modems currently in use, without the audio delays, frozen screens or jerky motion familiar to most who use conventional ISDN-type circuits.

The moderator of the Penn presentation, Lauder Institute director Richard J. Herring, sees this as the beginnings of future international video-conferencing. Penn is considering whether to participate in similar projects with universities in Germany, Finland and Britain.

Other tests of this type have been conducted between Intel in Silicon Valley and the University of Washington in Pullman, WA, but this is reported to be one of the first international efforts.

In a separate demonstration in early May, 2netFX demonstrated the commercial use of this technology by generating and decoding an HDTV broadband Internet stream that made Ethernet inventor and 3Com founder Bob Metcalfe a live part of Intel CEO Craig Barrett's keynote address at the Networld+Interop show in Las Vegas. Metcalfe was in Cambridge, MA.

What made this event different was that 2netFX was able to remotely control its HDTV streaming server, located at MIT in Cambridge, from the show floor in Las Vegas using a remote interface to manage and start the live HDTV stream of Metcalfe.

“The use of streaming HDTV in a large public forum by these two giants of the technological revolution signifies that HDTV-over-IP has arrived,” commented William Reed, 2netFX's vice president of marketing.

The HDTV stream required 20Mb/s, or nearly 20 times the capacity used by typical broadband video streams on the Web today. A continuous HDTV multicast rebroadcast, on a StreamRider player, followed the live presentation.

The broadband Internet stream that made the demonstration possible was delivered via Abilene, an Internet2 backbone network that connects more than 180 universities and research laboratories across the country. Abilene was deployed through a partnership among Qwest Communications, Cisco Systems, Nortel Networks, Indiana University and the University Corporation for Advanced Internet Development.

HDTV-over-IP offers an alternative means of sending and receiving HDTV content. It provides the means for anyone to enjoy the high-quality audio and video offered by HDTV and to be a broadcaster of HDTV content.

For additional information about Internet2 visit the website at www.Internet2.edu. For more on 2netFX, go to www.2netfx.com.