Featured: LASER MPS for DTT

Digital Terrestrial TV (DTT) networks are rolled-out around the world as part of Analog Switch-Off (ASO) programs. Depending on the countries, either DVB-T/T2, ATSC or ISDB-T is selected as a standard - the most prevalent being DVB.

By nature, DTT networks are build based on a network of DTT towers to cover the populated areas - the networks may be as small as dozens of towers for limited coverage to thousands of towers to cover a large country (like Russia with almost 15,000 transmission points throughout the country). Most of the DTT networks in the world are based on a free-to-air model which is mostly sponsored by advertisement revenues to fund the roll-out and maintenance of the network (and at times may also require subsidy from governmental bodies). For DTT operator around the world, it is therefore critical to maximize advertisement revenues.

IDC's LASER™ solution is designed to perform ad & program insertion at each receive point to achieve regionalization content. In a DTT network, LASER MPS is installed in DTT towers to allow regionalization at the tower level. In concrete terms, deploying the LASER solution enables having a different set of ads or programs for each tower if desired (i.e. for all viewers that receive content from that tower, irrespective of the model and capabilities of the Set-Top Boxes/DTT-capable TV sets). The LASER solution is flexible and also allows to manage content insertion campaigns at different levels such as:

  • At city level (i.e. group of DTT towers covering the city)

  • At region level (i.e. group of DTT towers covering the region)

  • for the entire network

  • Anything in between (grouping defined by the operators)

The ability to regionalize content is a key asset to operators going forward as:

  • it allows selling unsold national ad-slots on a regional basis

  • it allows for content relevance in an increasingly connected and personalized world - regionalization of programs is used to match location (programs specific to the city or region), to match cultural or language differences

  • it allows meeting content rights rules such as specific content that should (or should not) be available in specific locations - for example sports event in a given city should not be available in that city to encourage people to go to the stadium

  • it allows rolling out targeted emergency alerts (such as potentially incoming natural disaster) 

LASER MPS is a high-performance fit-for-purpose unit that implements everything required to perform regionalization of content (such as a content distribution system, ad server and frame accurate splicer). It is designed to be easily to insert into existing broadcast infrastructure either at the front (using the LASER's Satellite receiver capability) or in between existing equipment (ASI in / ASI out):

Its innovative design based on open standards such as DVB and SCTE enables content regionalizion in the compressed domain to ensure 100% frame accuracy and no degradation of quality (no-reencoding being performed). Thanks to this patented design, each LASER MPS unit supports up to 4 concurrent channels regionalization and is fully deterministic to allow use in the most demanding network configurations such as Single Frequency Networks (SFN). LASER MPS is a future-proof investment for the network given that it supports MPEG-2, MPEG-4 and HEVC - with resolutions up to Ultra HD (4K).

IDC's solution is the most advanced Ad & Program solution in the market, allowing central management & delivery of regional content in-band or through a return-path, thanks to IDC's Datacast XD™ which can reliably deliver content to each unmanned remote location. If a return-path is available at each location, each LASER MPS unit reports to IDC's Production Manager head-end on regionalized content delivered, as well as affidavit of regionalization:

IDC's LASER solution can be implemented to allow full automation from content ingestion (regional ads and programs) up to affidavit of regionalization that can be provided to advertisers and programmers.