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New ATSC Standard Would Allow OTA DTV Receiver Upgrades

The Advanced Television Systems Committee, Inc. (ATSC) has published Candidate Standard 97. The proposed standard is based on the ATSC Data Broadcast Standard A90 and can be used to update the software or firmware residing in consumer set-top boxes or DTV receivers, including operating system software, device driver software, native application software, and middleware. Jerry Whitaker, ATSC V.P. of Standards Development, commented, "The Software Download Candidate Standard will allow receiver manufacturers to dynamically upgrade their products in the field," said Jerry Whitaker, ATSC Vice President of Standards Development."

According to Michael Dolan, Chair of the ATSC Specialist Group that developed the Candidate Standard CS/97 "specifies the mechanisms for announcement, signaling, and encapsulation for the delivery of a download data service in the ATSC transport while allowing the specific details of the software download payload to be defined by each manufacturer."

The ATSC news release announcing the CS/97 said it was " an explicit call for implementation and technical feedback."