International Airwaves Roundup

South Korean committee reaffirms nation’s commitment to ATSC standard

The South Korean Digital TV Transmission Method Committee has agreed to maintain the ATSC standard for digital television as its transmission scheme. A debate erupted four years ago between some Korean broadcasters and Korean electronics manufacturers over use of the standard. Korean broadcasters had favored dumping the standard in favor of DVB-T; however, the electronics manufacturers contended that doing so would make their substantial investment in manufacturing sets compatible with the ATSC standard meaningless. With the dispute settled, it’s expected that 80 percent of the South Korean population will be watching high-definition digital transmission by the end of 2004.

NGT buys Crown Castle to gain foothold in 3G, digital broadcast market

National Grid Transco will purchase Crown Castle International, a mobile telecommunications company offering 3G service.

The acquisition will make NGT a major player in terrestrial digital TV and radio in the UK due to the breadth of Crown Castle’s transmission infrastructure. NGT will merge its Gridcom subsidiary with Crown Castle under the new name Crown Castle UK.

China delays decision on DTV transmission standard

China has pushed back the deadline for Hong Kong’s digital television transmissions until 2007.

Evaluation of technology needed for the digital terrestrial television service will continue until it has proven its stability, the government said.

China has been evaluating digital television transmission standards for national use with an eye to establishing the service prior to the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

The announcement pushes the deadline back by a year, but still gives the nation an opportunity to meet its timetable to deliver digital television transmission of the Games.

Point.360 buys International Video Conversions

Point.360 recently completed the purchase of International Video Conversions, a large independent HD and SD digital mastering and data conversion facility, serving the motion picture and television industry.

The IVC acquisition expands Point.360's revenue base and adds to the company’s pool of technical and operating talent.

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