TVB Tech Alert: Samsung Unveils Single Mobile DTV Chip

SEOUL, SOUTH KOREA: Samsung Electronics is rolling out its silicon for the ATSC M/H mobile DTV standard. The company combined radio frequency and digital chip components into a single 65 nanometer-scale chip. Samsung said the single-chip configuration would simplify device manufacturing, allowing for smaller and more efficient handheld receivers.

Samsung announced the availability of its chip just days after the Advanced Television Systems Committee approved its mobile DTV broadcasting standard. Samsung was active in the development of the technology that led to the standard.

“Prior to Samsung`s technical demonstration at the 2006 NAB Show, industry experts believed that the compatibility of mobile TV broadcasting technology with the existing ATSC broadcasting system was not possible,” said Byung Duck Cho, executive vice president of the Digital Media and Communications R&D Center of Samsung Electronics. “In early 2005, Samsung Electronics decided to apply significant resources to ATSC standardization.”

Nearly 70 U.S. TV stations are expected to be beta testing ATSC M/H by the end of this year.

“The goal is to prepare for formal broadcasting tests to North American consumers beginning in early 2010,” Samsung said.

LG Electronics is also producing chipsets for ATSC M/H compatible devices; Nokia reportedly has receivers ready for market. Another chip maker, Vishay of Malvern, Penn., announced a multilayer chip capable of receiving several transmission types, including MediaFLO, DVB-T, DVB-H and ISBD-T. ATSC M/H was not specifically mentioned, though Vishay did say the chip was capable of receiving the “entire UHF band.”

More on ATSC M/H:
October 16, 2009: “Mobile DTV Standard Adopted”
A/153, also known as ATSC M/H, defines the technical specifications necessary for broadcasters to provide new services to mobile and handheld devices using their digital television transmissions.