RTÉ, BT, RadioScape Provide Live TV to Mobile Phone Users via DAB-IP

RTÉ, BT and RadioScape have teamed up to bring live digital TV signals to mobile phone users, with a technical trial of DAB-IP in the Greater Dublin and North-East areas.

RTÉNL, in cooperation with RadioScape and BT, is testing a limited service with two live TV channels (RTÉ One and RTÉ Two) and two live radio channels (RTÉ Radio 1 and RTÉ 2fm) on air via DAB-IP. The trial uses BT Movio, a BT service soon to be available in the UK, to bring live digital TV, DAB digital radio and TV & radio listings to mobile handsets.

On 1 January 2006, RTÉ Radio and RTÉNL began technical trials of DAB digital radio. DAB-IP is a development of this platform that allows delivery of TV as well as radio. As a “one-to-many” broadcast system, DAB-IP is proven as a very efficient means of broadcasting live TV and digital radio content to mobile users. It eliminates the network congestion issues associated with some existing mobile TV services and allows an unlimited number of users at any one time to access live digital TV and digital radio via mobile devices.

Many industry analysts believe that live multimedia represents the next growth area in mobile convergence. There are a number of systems for delivery of multimedia content to mobile users in development throughout the world and RTÉNL is committed to a series of trials in this area, including DAB-IP.

“RadioScape is delighted to be able to facilitate this trial with the broadcast technology required. Having worked closely with BT over the recent trial of DAB-IP in the UK, we were able to have the broadcast system in Dublin up and running in four hours,” explained John Hall, RadioScape’s CEO.

“DAB-IP is a very popular solution for Mobile TV networks and we are involved with many similar trials and full installations of end-to-end broadcast solutions around the world. The broadcaster infrastructure and frequencies for DAB Radio are already in place in most countries. It is a technology that has been proven in the field to be robust and reliable, and it can be easily extended to deliver video in a spectrum efficient way. There is also the synergy of being able to deliver DAB radio programmes to the same receivers, which has proved very popular with users during trials,” he continued.

“BT is pleased to have the opportunity to work with RTÉ on their DAB-IP trial,” Danny McLaughlin, CEO of BT Ireland, commented. “Our innovative BT Movio solution takes advantage of IP technology to efficiently distribute TV and entertainment services to today’s mobile audience. Developed for the UK market, it was an exciting challenge for us to work with RadioScape to configure the technology equipment for use in RTE’s trial.”

For RTÉ, Ireland’s Public Service Broadcaster, these platforms are an exciting opportunity to bring high quality content to audiences wherever they are and however they want it.

“We’re excited by the potential of DAB for Radio and RTÉ’s trials to date have been extremely encouraging. Perhaps it’s an indication of the multimedia future that a radio platform is now hosting trials of television in this new format. DAB-IP is an immediate proposition, it uses spectrum that is available now and it works very well. I’d suggest that all those involved in developing or considering mobile multimedia technologies should see DAB-IP for themselves,” said JP Coakley, Head of Operations, RTÉ Radio.

“RTÉNL welcomes the opportunity to participate in the development of this new technology. We see DAB-IP as a good example of efficient use of our extensive network for the future,” added Ray Maguire, Business Development Manager, RTÉNL.