Samsung shows new mobile broadcast TV technology

It's called Advanced Vestigial Sideband (AVS) technology, and Samsung Electronics says that it’s a way for TV broadcasters to offer digital programming to a wide range of portable devices, including mobile phones, laptop computers, portable media players and car video displays.

Scheduled for demonstration with content from Sinclair Broadcast Group at CES 2007 in Las Vegas, the transmission technology is being targeted to TV broadcasters as a way to compete with a new generation of video services for mobile phones.

Reuters reported that the South Korean electronics manufacturer said it was not yet ready to release commercial products based on the technology, but expected it to become a technical standard in the first half of this year. Standardization efforts with the Advanced Television Systems Committee began in December 2005.

For the technology to work, broadcasters would have to transmit a separate and unique over-the-air signal to mobile devices equipped with a Samsung chipset. The incentive for stations to transmit such a signal would be additional advertising revenues.

Any type of portable device could pick up the broadcaster’s signal as long as it had a compatible video display and was equipped with the special Samsung chipset.

Implementing such a system, however, would not be easy. Beyond getting broadcasters to support the concept, strong resistance is expected from mobile carriers that have invested a significant amount of time and money into their own video services — such as Verizon’s V-Cast and MobiTV, which offers live programming for Cingular and Sprint Nextel.