5G broadcast trial starts end of March 2020

Tuesday, March 17, 2020, 12:00 Uhr

With the ultimate goal of expanding the ecosystem for media distribution, ORS is setting up a 5G broadcast testbed in Vienna. In the current issue of the EBU tech-i magazine, Michael Wagenhofer (CEO) talks about the upcoming tests in Vienna.

EBU tech-i magazine about 5G broadcast test operation in Vienna.
The March issue of the EBU tech-i magazine reports on the upcoming 5G broadcast test operation of ORS.

Final preparations for 5G broadcast testbed

The March issue of the European Broadcast Union’s (EBU) tech-i magazine primarily focuses on media distribution. On page 7, ORS CEO Michael Wagenhofer provides an outlook on the ORS 5G Broadcast trial operation, which will start at the end of March 2020 and was approved by the media authority KommAustria in November 2019. The new 5G Broadcast technology FeMBMS will be tested in two phases over the next few years at two high-power, high-tower transmitters in Vienna (Kahlenberg and Liesing).

First test phase until mid 2021

In the first phase until Q2 2021, the mobile transmission technology FeMBMS (Further evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service) will be compared with the current transmission standard for terrestrial television, DVB-T2. One advantage of FeMBMS is that it is possible to distribute media content to both, set-top boxes for TV and  mobile devices such as smartphones or tablets. Thus, it will allow broadcasters to significantly expand their media ecosystem.

Simulations and mobile measurements on the roads through Vienna

In cooperation with the ORS, the Vienna University of Technology (TU Vienna) expanded their link-level simulator for FeMBMS capabilities. Simulations with a multitude of parameters were performed to get data rates and reception quality for different coverage situations. The results from the simulations are will be compared with field measurements in summer. At the moment, the ORS is preparing their measurement fleet to bring them on the road in Vienna to verify at different walking and driving speeds the reception quality with the simulations.

Another important advantage is the possibility to distribute new media formats, such as HTTP Live Streaming (HLS) over FeMBMS which will also be investigated.


Call for 5G Broadcast Testbed participation for the second phase

For the second phase of the trial (starting in 2021), it is the plan is to test future applications including hybrid services with interaction between broadcast network operators and mobile network operators as well as the distribution of disaster and crisis information together with collaboration partners.

ORS invites interested parties to participate in the 5G Broadcast Testbed. Especially universities, broadcasters, mobile network operators, chipset and set-top box manufacturers are invited to test their devices, applications within the existing test environment. Questions about participation can be submitted to Dr. Johann Mika, project manager oft the 5G Broadcast Testbed Vienna.

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