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Stations to perform additional mobile DTV tests in the fall

The Open Mobile Video Coalition (OMVC), a consortium of more than 800 TV stations advocating a new mobile digital television standard, will join the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) to do further testing this fall.

The OMVC is providing additional funding to the ATSC for testing specs for a new mobile/handheld DTV system. It would enable stations to broadcast video and data to cell phones and other portable devices in the United States. Both organizations have said their goal is to have a final standard ratified no later than the second quarter of next year.

The OMVC’s support includes corroborative testing of the core transmission system, or “physical layer;” independent verification of the candidate standard; complete system validation; and on-air facility and interoperability testing.

The OMVC plans separate consumer trials of mobile DTV, which is not included in the ATSC process and is designed to gauge the business prospects for such a service. Stations in Dallas and Chicago have offered to host such trials, but plans are not yet set.