[LINK] Digital TV falls into the wrong hands
rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
rchirgwin at ozemail.com.au
Fri Jun 24 18:34:31 EST 2005
Marghanita da Cruz wrote:
> The debate is really about how the government licenses the spectrum.
> You could look at this another way. Is there any reason why we need to
> have special purpose broadcast licenses?
Well, hostorical artefact comes to mind... the problem I guess is that
once the business model is built, if the government dismantles the
model, it also has to compensate the owners of spectrum.
> Would it work if there was a single license which permitted service
> providers to offer broadcast of picture/audio, wireless data and voice
> services. This is already happening to some degree. NTL now Broadcast
> Australia owns the transmitters which deliver the ABC and SBS(?).
I wonder. Radio broadcasts would surely still gravitate to the lower
frequencies; partly because of the tyranny of the installed base (which
is now causing the problems in digital TV); partly I think because if
all you need is an audio band, why do you need a GHz carrier? (In fact,
broadcasting is limited by the behaviour of radio waves. Why try
broadcasting on a line-of-sight frequency?).
Data services gravitate to higher frequencies because you want decent
bandwidth for lots of users (nobody seems much interested in generic
"broadcast data". Why is that?).
And it's probably worth remembering that regardless of what you can do
with electronics, the atmosphere gets in the way of very very high
frequencies. Which means spectrum remains limited. That doesn't mean
"there is only one way to manage it"...
> We could speculate on alternate models and the evolution of technology.
> What if/Could the Internet with suitable compression and streaming
> technology to offer video and audio on demand.
> Then again, if this kind of communication became a reality would be be
> socialising over the Internet rather than watching anonymous unrelated
To a degree happening already ... but there seems to be rather a lot of
people who still watch the TV. While TV and the Internet are to a degree
time-exclusive (ie, people don't multitask all that well!),
person-to-person communications media don't exclude people seeking
"passive" entertainment as well.
Yes, TV viewing is falling (and was doing so in the pre-Internet era).
It's under time competition. It's suffering from a restructure of how
people live; as well as compeition from DVDs; and a host of other things.
> Glen Turner wrote:
>> I'm not so sure about Alan's commentary though. He assumes
>> there's a world of people ready to become broadcasters, all
>> they need is the spectrum. There might be one or two (including
>> the SHM itself), but there are huge running costs in transmission
>> and huge regulatory overheads. I wonder if we'll see some video
>> variant of podcasting, where the TiVo downloads the content from
>> the net of the stuff you're interesting in watching.
>> Anyway, digital TV is an interesting experience in the risks of
>> picking winners, so I'm not going to be so foolish as to
>> speculate further about the long-term future of TV.
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