Mobile operators O2, Orange, and Vodafone, have announced plans to jointly pilot a new mobile broadcast system capable of delivering data intensive services including mobile TV in a more efficient way.
The pilot will run for three months commencing in October in central London and Slough to assess how mobile broadcast services can be deployed using shared network infrastructure.Â The pilot will use IMB, a standardised 3GPP technology recently endorsed by the GSMA. According to the operators, as well as offering broadcast services to customers, it can seamlessly link with traditional unicast or on-demand services delivered over 3G.
The operators are exploring using the technology within a little-used tranche of 3G spectrum called Time Division Duplex (TDD) spectrum. This spectrum already forms part of the 3G licences held by many European mobile operators, but has remained largely unused because of a lack of appropriate technology. Currently, 3G TDD spectrum is available to over 150 operators across 60 countries covering more than half a billion subscribers.
IPWireless and Ericsson will deliver the end-to-end technology solution for the UK pilot. IPWireless will supply the core 3GPP broadcast technology. Ericsson will provide integration services and a media platform.