WNET Group Announces Plans to Bring NextGen TV to New York City

New York
(Image credit: Getty)

NEW YORK—New York City Public Broadcaster WNET has revealed its plans to launch ATSC 3.0 (aka NextGen TV) in New York City, the largest television market in the United States, with approximately 7.45 million TV households. The WNET Group's WLIW21 will serve as the host station for ATSC 3.0 broadcasts for the three major PBS member stations in the New York metropolitan area: THIRTEEN, WLIW21 and NJ PBS.


(Image credit: WNET Group)

WLIW21 says in preparing for the launch, it has completed extensive engineering testing and operational planning, co-located its broadcast facilities to One World Trade Center in lower Manhattan, installed a new transmitter and related equipment, and upgraded to the station's physical plant, all of which have already been completed. The transition is subject to FCC approval, and The WNET Group says it will make a separate announcement upon the launch.

"The WNET Group is excited to announce this significant undertaking with NextGen TV, which will modernize the New York City broadcast market infrastructure to deliver high-quality broadcasts with the latest technology available," said Neal Shapiro, President & CEO of The WNET Group.

The WNET Group, is home to New York's PBS stations THIRTEEN and WLIW21, operator of New Jersey's statewide public television network NJ PBS, and Long Island's only NPR station WLIW-FM.

WLIW21 will carry high-definition programming from both WLIW21 and THIRTEEN, along with several standard-definition commercial sub-channels and the THIRTEEN PBS Kids service. WNET Group says viewers "may expect features including 4K, interactivity, HDR, advanced emergency messaging, additional CC and audio languages, and more, all of which are in the works."

"The WNET Group's NextGen TV Broadcast Initiative will be a shining example of how public media can lead the broadcast industry into the future. The WNET Group's WLIW21 will help bring about the full capabilities of the NextGen TV broadcast standard to the nation's largest television market," said ATSC President Madeleine Noland.

Supporting organizations for The WNET Group NextGen TV include:

  • AGC Systems LLC (Aldo Cugnini)
  • AWARN Alliance
  • BIA Advisory Services
  • Centralcast
  • Lerman Senter PLLC
  • Public Media Venture Group
  • Skip Pizzi Media Consultant LLC (Project Management)
Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched digitalbroadcasting.com for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (www.tvtech.com), the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.