As a result of broadband service providers moving from offering connectivity to services, the discussion surrounding broadband entertainment has increased significantly. The Broadband Services Forum (BSF) membership has identified a number of services that require significant focus in this decade; one of these is Internet Protocol Television (IPTV).

IPTV, essentially, has two components: Part 1: Internet Protocol (IP): specifies the format of packets and the addressing scheme. Most networks combine IP with a higher level protocol. Depending on the vendor solution, user datagram protocol (UDP) is the most typical higher level protocol. The protocol establishes a virtual connection between a destination and a source. IP allows you to address a package of information and drop it in the system, but there¶s no direct link between you and the recipient. Part 2: Television (TV): specifies the medium of communication that operates through the transmission of pictures and sounds. We all know TV, but here we are referring to the services that are offered for the TV, like linear and on demand programming. Add the two components together (IP+TV) and you have: IPTV: specifies the medium of communication of pictures and sound that operates over an IP Network. It is important to point out that IPTV services usually operate over a private IP network and not the public Internet. In a private IP network specifically designed for IPTV, a service provider can ensure quality of service (QoS) for consumers. QoS refers to giving certain IP traffic a higher priority than other IP traffic. In an IPTV network, TV signals are given the highest priority. As a result, the TV service is instantaneous; there is no downloading involved for the linear or on demand content. An IPTV service model offers a complete broadcaster and ³cable programmer´ channel line up, including live programming delivered in real time. Additionally, it can offer a video on demand (VOD) service and enables the broadband service provider to develop new and unique services to differentiate their offering from competitors.


FIG 1.1




Traditional television was a service broadcast over the air, but today less than 12% of consumers TV sets receive TV services over the air from local broadcasters with roughly 60% of TV household subscribing to cable services and approximately 24% subscribing to digital Satellite TV services. Broadcast television services are undergoing major transitions from basic analog 4:3 television to, for example: a) Digital Television (DTV) as a result of various governmental mandates and market pressures, b) Multiple formats, e.g., NTSC Standard Definition (SDTV 480i), PAL Standard Definition (PAL-SDTV 576i), Enhanced Definition (EDTV 480p), and High Definition (720p or 1080i) and different aspect ratios (Wide Screen is 16:9, SDTV is 4:3), c) An environment where new ancillary devices, such as digital video recorders, are being widely deployed.


to one where the TV is one of several devices in an entertainment network. The consumer viewing environment is changing from simply having a TV in the living room to an environment where: a) 33% of US households have some form of Home Theater system. These services may include. service providers are looking to enter the video services arena by leveraging their broadband IP infrastructure. In this report IPTV is defined as the secure and reliable delivery to subscribers of entertainment video and related services. for example. advertisers and customers alike. the environment of the television set is changing from one where the TV is an isolated device encapsulating the service. These services are delivered across an access agnostic. packet switched network that employs the IP protocol to transport the audio. c) Video content can be received by mobile handsets and viewed by the consumer across the coverage footprint of major mobile wireless service providers. b) in vehicle video systems are becoming popular with 12% of new cars featuring screens and that expected to rise to 50% by 2010. In contrast to video over the public Internet. Video on Demand (VOD) and Interactive TV (I TV). 3 . with IPTV deployments. resulting in a compelling business environment for content providers.Furthermore. Live TV. These new services are generally referred to collectively as IPTV. network security and performance are tightly managed to ensure a superior entertainment experience. In this context of change. video and control signals.

The most common protocol used for switching channels in a SDV environment is IGMP (IP Group Membership Protocol).1 IPTV Network Elements . content video head end service provider core/edge IP network home network consumer FIG 2. This enables the service provider to have no theoretical maximum linear channel count. Figure 1 illustrates the two way nature of an IPTV network. IPTV vendors will have different variants of the SDV architecture. It should be noted that the IPTV network elements combine to form an architecture known as switched digital video (SDV): Switched digital video (SDV) ± Referencing the network architecture of a television distribution system in which only the selected channel(s) are distributed to the individual connected household. 4 .2. THE IPTV NETWORK ELEMENTS: An IPTV system is made up of four major elements. which contributes to many of the advantages IPTV has over traditional television service delivery models. all are generic are common to any vendor¶s (or combination of vendors¶) infrastructure. This is another advantage to using IP multicast for the broadcast television streams.

3 THE ACCESS NETWORK: The access network is the link from the service provider to the individual household. A head end takes each individual channel and encodes it into a digital video format. movies) content is captured and formatted for distribution over the IP network. however.. is transported over the service provider¶s IP network. This is the point in the network at which linear (e. an IPTV service requires a video head end.. 2. IP multicast has several perceived advantages because it enables the service provider to propagate one IP stream per broadcast channel from the video head end to the service provider access network. Typically. like MPEG 2. such as lower bit rate requirements for encoding both SD and HD television signals.g.2 THE SERVICE PROVIDER CORE/EDGE NETWORK: The grouping of encoded video streams. These networks can be a mix of well engineered existing IP networks and purpose built IP networks for video transport.g. After encoding. Each of these networks are unique to the service provider and usually include equipment from multiple vendors. the IP network connects to the access network. certain vendors make use of IP unicast streams as well. the broadband connection 5 . These channels are typically IP multicast streams. the head end ingests national feeds of linear programming via satellite either directly from the broadcaster or programmer or via an aggregator. as it has some advantages over MPEG 2. Some programming may also be ingested via a terrestrial fiber based network.1 THE VIDEO HEAD END: As with a digital cable or digital satellite television system. thousands of viewers tuning in to a sporting event). At the network edge. 2.2. This is beneficial when multiple users want to tune in to the same broadcast channel at the same time (e. which remains the most prevalent encoding standard for digital video on a worldwide basis.g. Sometimes referred to as ³the last mile´. representing the channel line up. Broadband service providers are also beginning to use MPEG 4 based encoding. broadcast TV) and on demand (e. each channel is encapsulated into IP and sent out over the network..

but IPTV requires a very robust high bandwidth home network that can only be accomplished today using wire line technology. The ease of managing multiple services is a function of the two way IP network. They also are beginning to use fiber technology like PON (passive optical networking) to reach homes. The middleware selection by a service provider can impact the IPTV network architecture. it defines how the consumer interacts with the service. and IPTV becomes just one of these applications. because of this. is the set top box (STB). There are many different types of home networks. Telecom service providers are using DSL (digital subscriber line) technology to serve individual households. IPTV networks will use variants of asymmetrical DSL (ADSL) and very high speed DSL (VDSL) to provide the required bandwidth to run an IPTV service to the household. Therefore. The differentiating factor in an IP service model is convergence. 2.4 THE HOME NETWORK: The home network distributes the IPTV service throughout the home. Because of the common structure for applications and services. 2. are all made available and controlled through the middleware. to which the television set is connected. The middleware controls the user experience and. applications and operations/business support systems (OSS/BSS). managing multiple services becomes a matter of 6 . For example. the user interface and services available to a consumer (such as the electronic program guide (EPG).5 MIDDLEWARE: THE IPTV ENABLER: The term IPTV middleware is used to describe the software packages associated with delivering an IPTV service. The end point in the home network. each with their own unique approach to IPTV. The service provider will place a device (like a DSL modem) at the customer premises to deliver an Ethernet connection to the home network. This IP architecture provides a standard for applications and services to be integrated into the network. VOD or pay per view service). convergence can be realized for network elements.between the service provider and the household can be accomplished using a variety of technologies. The middleware is typically a client/server architecture where the client resides on the STB. There are a variety of vendors in this space.

These video services may include: a. The access network portion of the IP network consists of different types of technologies for the physical transmission of the Layer 2 7 . b.g. quality of service and reliability as needed. Today¶s end-to-end IP network also has the following general characteristics: a. This end-to-end IP network transports the audio. IPTV: TODAY & TOMORROW: 3. Interactive TV (iTV) services. Today¶s IPTV services are delivered across a packet transport network based on the Internet Protocol with appropriate security. a home network.) c. Live broadcast video.g. The IPTV middleware controls the user interface and commercial experience/details of VOD and can also be extended to include services like subscription VOD and network based personal video recorder (PVR). an access network.. It consists of a number of sections between the end consumer and the content source. fast forward and rewind. a core network.6 IPTV VIDEO ON DEMAND (VOD): Video on demand(VOD) services operate in a different manner than linear television service as the IPTV system provides the subscriber with a unicast stream of programming with VCR like controls including pause.1 IPTV TODAY: Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) today is a collection of video (and related) services primarily delivered to consumers for entertainment purposes. video and control signals between the content source and the consumer. 3. Content on Demand c. Ethernet frames. e..managing the same services through the network and distributing them to multiple end user environments. b. 2. The IP packets may be encapsulated by some layer 2 transport (e.

) e.g. businesses and communities).. it is envisioned that it will simply be one of many new applications supported by the Next Generation Network (NGN). b. point to point data cabling (Cat 5 or 6).g. In particular.2 IPTV TOMORROW: Going forward. requiring delivery from many different content creation sources and easier customization. Any video services originating from the public Internet. Two-way video conferencing. Today. Thanks to the NGN. the term IPTV does not encompass: a. It is envisioned that more pervasive delivery and ease of content creation will enable IPTV to be used 8 . Ethernet over Coax. Specialized point-to-point video services such as Instructional Television Fixed Service (ITFS) 3... Distribution to cinema e. d. Other IP enabled services may be delivered in parallel to the current IPTV services using the same access. The home network portion of the IP network consists of different types of technologies for the physical transmission of the Ethernet frames (e. IPTV is seen as a broader application than today¶s definition encompasses. c. This view of IPTV extends beyond the home delivery model that is the focus of today¶s IPTV and also includes additional options for distribution of IPTV to wherever the consumer may be. the domain of applications for IPTV will broaden to other environments (e. various versions of DSL. Transmission of ³contribution´ video between studios. Ethernet over electrical wiring and/or in-premises wireless options.Protocol Data Units (e. Other devices may be operating in the home network in parallel to and/or interacting with the current IPTV devices.g.) d. f. fixed wireless and optical fiber.

MPEG-4) rather than simply a single video format. education. Specifically this interface would share bandwidth with other NGN services such as VoIP. The interactivity functionality should be capable of evolving into a rich communication context in order to enable a customer perception of communication with content. like holding real-time conversations or chats.. MPEG-7) will also be key in enabling IPTV service evolution. In addition.for complementary services other than pure infotainment (e.g. the video information is to be transported over IP. and intuitive multimodal-multimedia user interactions that can all be delivered in combination with the content by relying on well-coordinated NGN resources and devices capabilities. 4.. IPTV entertainment services are thus poised to provide not simply a broader distribution of existing content. and multimedia interactive services. augmented reality and virtual environments for other communications services. sharing the experience through conferencing mechanisms (with appropriate business models in place). IPTV AT THE NETWORK INTERFACE (NI): At the network Interface between the operator¶s network and the subscriber¶s network. High Speed Internet. The IPTV concept should be flexible enough to support the evolution of entertainment service concepts from the linear video formats of yesteryear to rich media environments supportive of interactivity and consumer engagement.g. 9 . a more general interpretation would consider the IPTV service as consuming fungible bandwidth within a larger IP access facility. healthcare. While a specific infrastructure could be dedicated for the service.g. but to enable a broader range of entertainment service options such as interactive games.) As an NGN application domain IPTV will also benefit from communicationsoriented capabilities. In order to accommodate this broad range of content. the IPTV concept should be further expanded to include delivery of content to portable devices over various types of wireless networks. It may also include using the mobile handsets to do some of the interactive features and control. IPTV will need to support a framework for multimedia data types (e.. The availability of metadata concerning the content (e. and security.

Pt-Pt or xPON) or wireless (e.e copper (e.g. Uncontrolled redistribution of license restricted content is not to be supported 10 . etc.. The service architecture should be the same regardless of the nature of the physical layer is i. The IPTV application domain should be independent of how the IPTV signals are transported. A given service provider will operate a content library that they deem economic.There may be a variety of NI's used for the IPTV service. fiber (e.g.g. WiFi. An effective Network-to-Network Interface (NNI) is required to enable this ³long tail´10. Several operators currently have copper infrastructure in place with future upgrade plans for fiber infrastructure. the aggregate service becomes significantly more attractive to consumers. bonded xDSL links. Vlog) In each case the content is expected to be appropriately protected by the DRM scheme. The architecture should recognize that access network and terminal capability constraints may require adaptation of the video formats. as both residential and professional users will traverse the boundaries of access networks. 3G.. IPTV should also enable a smooth transition between the mobile and Fixed world.g. By enabling 3rd party content providers.. Consumers must be able to access video services from a variety of sources. Figure 2 shows an IPTV service deriving content from a variety of sources ± a) Traditional satellite broadcast downlinks b) Commercial video server farms c) Smaller scale video publishers ( e. WiMax). xDSL. IPTV AT THE NNI: The value of an IPTV service (compared to traditional TV services) for the consumer lies in its ability to enable a wider selection of content than can be enabled by any one operator.). 5.

FIG 5. The location of the content storage is another option. the IP infrastructure is not a broadcast medium. cached. (How much of the content is buffered before playback). NETWORK SRVICE MODELS FOR IPTV While most commercial TV content is delivered via broadcast service.1 MULTIPLE CONTENT SOURCE MODEL FOR IPTV 6. This storage could be centralized. or distributed across the CPE in a peer-peer 11 . Where streaming IPTV services may be thought of as ³live´ or ³continuous´ services. bulk data transport mechanisms to deliver the content to the customer prior to its use. but may use traditional non-real time. A Video on Demand (VoD) IPTV service is not always required to stream the content. the difference is one of degree. a VoD service is essentially relying on stored content. while other content will be so widely watched that multicast offers significant network efficiencies. Both streaming and VoD services rely on storage for buffering. Some content will be relatively specialized and provided as a unicast stream. The choice of whether to provide streaming IPTV content as unicast or multicast as well as the proportion of either mode should be an operator¶s choice.

Distributed storage may be required for reasons of network performance ± e. It is expected that as new IPTV services evolve. For example. the content must be suitably protected by the DRM scheme. It should be key for the IPTV application architecture to rely on open standards interfaces to set-top boxes (and other end point devices) that can be exercised so that application logic can get distributed and well coordinated across the application and device planes. In the NGN context. Portable media players and game terminals could also be considered examples of NGN terminals. WiFi or 3G connected PDAs and cell phones should be able to receive. decode and display content (within their resolution limits). functional modules.g. With appropriate software enhancements. new terminal types will come to market.). Delivering a compelling end to end IPTV service will also require operators to manage the multivendor customer premises equipment like the set-top boxes described above. 12 . 7. the variety of terminals of interest may be considerably larger.or grid fashion. including various forms of mobile terminals. Additional service models for IPTV are expected. IPTV ASSUMPTIONS: 7. DRM keys. The IPTV applications (including derivative or enhanced IPTV services) would have access in a network-agnostic way through the NGN service plane to the same capabilities (or profile of capabilities) for diverse terminal and access specificities. this should be considered as a critical area of need for creation and use of open standards (managing applications. quality of experience. this type of device should be able to access the NGN IPTV service.1 IPTV TERMINAL ASSUMPTIONS: IPTV is commonly assumed to terminate in a set-top box attached to a TV screen and this may well be the initial deployment model. jitter reduction or error correction.. etc. Where content is stored in distributed arrangements (refer Figure 4 for potential scope of distribution).

Note that advertising supported business models may require additional architectural features to support the delivery of the advertising content to the customer as well as viewership metrics to the advertisers. The IPTV service would also benefit from a more customized or personalized content experience. personal video recorders and other NGN terminal equipment must be available as retail consumer electronics devices and yet be identifiable as interoperable with the IPTV service. duration of viewing models. Traditional advertisers are reportedly moving towards media and advertising techniques where greater consumer interactivity is 13 . It may be required to support multiple modes of advertising. but is also threatened by increasing adoption of digital video recorder technology. for example.. at the user. pay -per-view models. While the consumer aspect is probably of widest interest initially.g. These regulatory and licensing issues may come to play in a mobile IPTV environment. in the Ku band satellite television. professionals can get access to their Enterprise channels while customers premises «). the narrowcasting capabilities inherent in the IPTV service may make it attractive for niche content delivery in a variety of other business settings. The traditional timeslot insertion approach used by the MSOs is well understood by the advertising value chain participants. community or enterprise level as the NGN brings the capability to separate the issue of IPTV delivery from geographical or access network limitations (e. multi-service bundles. advertising supported models. consumers can watch home channels over roaming networks. retail businesses such as restaurants and hotels. and interoperability. However. or some combination thereof. This should be facilitated by relying on open standards of content management.2 BUISNESS MODEL ASSUMPTIONS: The IPTV service may be offered using a number of business models. the FCC has placed restrictions on where the local broadcast networks can be received. To facilitate consumer adoption of the service. These may include subscription models.g. authoring.7. Hence Operators can enable a wider set of customers to be creating content and send them to other communities/people not really 'local' to them. it is expected that standardized set-top boxes. IPTV services may also be of interest to various business segments e.. watching home channels outside the home geographic area may impose some regulatory or licensing issues. The IPTV service is primarily considered a consumer service.

video and high-speed data services .assured. advertising impact is more measurable. packages and bundles will serve as a major competitive tool for operators and thus be an important success factor in the evolution of IPTV in general. A recent survey. It is. the bi-directionality of IP enables the completion of transactions. which can serve as an additional source of revenue. Further.voice. the advertising material could be dynamically inserted in the media stream and rendered as part of the scene. and better returns can be achieved from their advertising expenditures.from a single provider. broadcast) nature of IP to enable the use of TV based targeted advertising for small/medium business that cannot afford television advertising today. and by limiting and targeting ads (low placement cost) to a pre-defined audience (by geography. special interest) it will be possible to offer small advertisers the ability to shift their marketing dollars to TV advertising and therefore generate new revenue streams for carriers. anything from connecting the consumer to the advertiser for a voice call to completing a purchasing transaction for material or digital goods. The architectural capability for service integration between communication and entertainment services creates the potential for a variety of new business model and service bundling arrangements. yet feature rich. the ability to offer consumers simple. Alternative mechanisms for advertising insertion may thus be required in the IPTV context. a fairly safe assumption to make that service bundling will play a major role in the evolution of IPTV. By enabling low production cost advertising similar to Internet advertising (static or animated graphics). An important new angle on IPTV advertising is the utilization of the unicast/multicast (vs. therefore. For example. conducted by Insight Express. Completing a transaction could mean in this case. 14 . In addition. found that 82% of broadband users are interested in receiving "triple play" services .

8. The IP STB is connected by a cable to the television.1 REQUIREMENTS ON THE CONSUMER: In order to use an IPTV service. 8 Mbps has become the standard minimum requirement.1 IPTV CUSTOMER EQUIPMENT 15 . consumers need a broadband connection and modem. Consumers can connect their computers and VoIP service equipment to a broadband modem. which is only suitable for receiving a digital television service that is compressed to the IP network. IPTV FROM THE CONSUMER¶S PERSPECTIVE: 8.RECIEVER STEREO BROADBAND CONNECTION IP STB BROADBAND MODEM KEYBOARD FIG 8. The broadband modem is connected by an Ethernet cable or by a wireless connection to the IP STB. T. The IPTV service does not place special requirements on consumers¶ television sets. An IPTV service that is implemented using modern technology requires a connection with a data speed of 5 to 6 Mbps at least. and includes a connection to which it is possible to connect stereo equipment. because it enables consumers to use the Internet simultaneously to watching television.V. However.

communication etc. IPTV also enables TV program related interactive services. which means that IPTV enables televisiondisplay Internet services that require a return path right from the beginning. Other examples of on-demand services include games. however. and IP STBs are equipped with Internet browsers. With HD Ready LCD television resolution. Next-level services are dependent on service providers. For Conax decryption. On-demand services. These basic services include a television portal that may offer some extra features compared to traditional television. which means that pages have to be scrolled vertically and horizontally. in which case a pay television card is not required. pay television channels and a program guide. Most companies have started with a basic range of IPTV services that includes the typical digital television services: free television and radio channels. such as the opportunity to order additional services. Internet use. The large-capacity network-touser broadband connection and the existing return path provide versatile opportunities for implementing different services. which the user can use to order a movie for 24 hours at a desired time. companies are at different stages in the development of their IPTV service ranges. and have taken different approaches to IPTV. digital pay channels are encrypted using the Conax system. because they still lack support for higher resolutions and drivers and media players for using advanced Internet applications. Standard tube television resolution is too low for www pages. simpler 16 .2 DEVELOPMENT OF THE SERVICE RANGE: In global terms. which can also be utilized in IPTV. is somewhat restricted. email). At present. which the IPTV provider may have included in the customer equipment. and especially video-on-demand. music video clips and interactive advertising. designed to be used on computer displays.Consumers can use the television service by remote control or wireless keyboard. are considered the most essential IPTV services. customers must acquire a pay television card from the service provider. In Finland. but here the problem is caused by the IP STBs. IPTV uses a broadband connection. IPTV services also utilize software-based DRM encryption. IPTV¶s pay television content is encrypted so that only those customers who have paid for it can receive it. and does not meet the requirements of the ³power surfer´. www pages would look clear on the television screen. 8. The break-through of communication services into the living room and consumers¶ screens is also within the realm of possibility: at first. IPTV is perfectly suitable for normal Internet use (occasional information searches.

but this table illustrates the main differences between the channels. broadband. such as email and SMS will arrive. pay TV card Possible antenna network renewal and maintenance Satellite dish installation and in house network maintenance 17 . rent EUR 10-15 per month Cable TV conn. followed by highquality video calls. IPTV DVB-C Ok Numerous (50-90) Characteristic DVB-T Ok limited DVB-S ok Numerous (40-90) Basic TV channels Ok Numerous (40-90) Pay TV channels (number of channels) Immediate Interactivity interactivity Initial costs Basic digital STB Connection fees Other Operating costs EUR 298 EUR 0 Separate return channel EUR 109 EUR 197-652 Separate return channel EUR 79 EUR 0 Separate return channel EUR 79 EUR 50-130 Satellite dish EUR 75 Channel and content fees. around EUR 5 per month Channel and content fees.communication services. pay TV card Other Channel and content fees. possibly pay TV card Possible IP STB. IPTV Channel and content fees. 8. pay TV card Possible STB. rent EUR 10-15 per month Broadband connection EUR 4075 per month Triple Play package cost savings (VoIP. The situation may change in the future.3 IPTV IN COMPARISON TO THE TRADITIONAL DIGITAL TV DISTRIBUTION CHANNELS: Table compares IPTV to other digital television distribution channels from the consumer¶s perspective: the table is based on the television services currently available in Finland. fee.

The range of available channels is approximately the same as for satellite and cable transmission homes. IPTV is the most expensive option in principle. and it is possible to browse the Internet on a basic level using the television set. Compared to satellite and antenna reception of television broadcasts. IPTV is as effortless a solution as cable television. television and VoIP costs made possible by Triple Play packages. and the channels are not subtitled in Finnish. With regard to antenna reception. super teletext.g. it is advisable for consumers to rent an IP STB at first. some old houses may require changes or reconstructive work to be done to achieve digital capacity.g. Having a broadband connection eliminates the costs of installing and maintaining one¶s own antennas. one must consider the potential customer savings in broadband. Although it is true that several hundred foreign TV channels are available through satellite transmission. since service providers offer different service ranges. games. dish and installation in exchange for a 12-monthchannel package subscription. which is easy to do in the case of rental devices. With regard to the cost of use. other transmission channels require consumers to acquire separate return channels (e. so consumers will soon have to replace their STBs. but in the case of IPTV. cable modem or DSL connection) and a so-called hybrid STB (DVB-C/T/S digital STB with an Ethernet connection). to reach the level of IPTV. the reception of these channels requires special reflectors. On the other hand. Due to this. IPTV has the best future potential of all the transmission channels regarding interactive services since. They do this to lower the consumers¶ threshold for acquiring satellite television. IPTV does provide a significant number of additional pay television channels to homes covered by the terrestrial network. 18 . At present. Comparing the different distribution methods¶ costs for the customer is not straightforward. The interactive services currently available in the other transmission channels comprise television channel subscriptions by SMS message or telephone call.There are no significant differences between the transmission methods with regard to basic television channels. and a group of simple MHP services (e. chat). IP STBs are developing rapidly. cable transmission homes have to pay an initial subscription fee to join the cable television network. In addition to the purchase price. for which IPTV is a potential option. satellite providers Via sat and Canal + nowadays provide a satellite STB. Therefore. pricing and discounts. the correct installation of a satellite dish typically requires a professional technician. With respect to satellite transmission. IPTV enables immediate interactivity through a broadband connection. basic STBs cost substantially more in the case of IPTV. This fee is especially high for private houses (more than EUR 600). because it requires the consumer to pay monthly fees for a fast broadband connection.

video-on-demand and other additional services). broadband networks and an IP STB in the customer¶s home. 9. and satellite distribution homes. IPTV FROM THE TECHNOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVE: IPTV is still young with regard to its extensive commercial utilization.1 IPTV SERVICE ARCHITECTURE IPTV operators receive digital satellite channels by satellite antenna and digital terrestrial services by UHF antenna. The channels are routed to the transmission center¶s signal converter equipment. transmission centre. IPTV may challenge other television distribution channels in the future with its extensive range of interactive services (Internet. which converts the television content to an IP network-compatible format and transmits it into homes via operators¶ broadband 19 . we evaluate the technological development of IPTV with regard to the crucial elements required for providing the service. On the other hand. FIG 9.1 IPTV PRODUCTION SYSTEM: Fig 9.To summarize. the same features can be incorporated into the other channels. background systems. In this chapter. 9. especially to those antenna transmission households whose pay television options are limited to four channels.1 illustrates the components required for implementing IPTV services. the main components are reception. it could be stated that IPTV brings added value.

consumers cannot buy just any IP STB. and serves as the customer¶s television user interface. It also manages the opening and closing of services and channels for customers. This has resulted in compatibility problems with IPTV equipment. The IPTV system¶s most crucial component is the software that enables service and customer management in the transmission centre (middleware) and which integrates the different elements of the IPTV system into a single entity. which are distributed over the operator¶s broadband networks in the case of geographically large implementations and as the number of customers grows. IPTV services are received by an IP STB whose software and updates are managed by a configuration server located in the transmission centre.backbone and access networks. The rising level of costs ultimately shows in consumer prices. These also require an encryption solution for securing content and creating customers¶ rights of use. Several parties (e. for they must be adaptable to the service provider¶s IPTV system.2 DEVELOPMENT OF STANDARDIZATION: At the moment there is no standard covering the entire IPTV transmission chain. Nordig and ISMA) are currently creating IPTV standards. The divergence of different countries¶ and continents¶ digital television systems is another hindrance 20 . from the business sector¶s perspective. which restricts competition and choices regarding manufacturers and thus slows down the fall in equipment prices. and the first specification versions should be ready in 2007. Operators can enable their IPTV subscribers to access the Internet through broadband networks by way of routers. and the VoIP service to access the landline telephone network through gateways. the establishment of standards would be advantageous. Background systems enable invoicing.g. The software directs the traffic between the transmission centre and IP STB. This also means that service development and integration costs rise and service launch times become longer due to the construction of a consistent IPTV production system. ETSI. In homes. Also. encryption definitions are missing). so IPTV implementations have been customized solutions specific to IPTV operators. Thus. The problem is that current specifications do not offer definitions for the entire IPTV distribution chain (e. providing the TV program guide and a subscription system for additional services. 9. among other things. The IPTV system communicates with the background systems through middleware. IPTV¶s additional services are provided from separate distribution servers.g.

resulting in a compelling business environment for content providers. with IPTV deployments. IPTV operators could implement their services with decreasing system and development costs. the IEG has identified a considerable number of issues that may impede the adoption of IPTV. The second stage would include the standardization of technology that enables additional IPTV services. network security and performance are tightly managed to ensure a superior entertainment experience. we were unable to identify an organization that is providing a single venue for ATIS members to work the issues identified. In our brief time of existence. In contrast to video over the public Internet. advertisers and customers alike. Supported by these. These services are delivered across an access agnostic. However. The IEG has also identified a considerable amount of activity in various forums and standards development organizations (SDOs) that relates to IPTV.1 BACKGROUND: The TOPS Council commissioned IPTV Exploratory Group (IEG) has defined IPTV as service provider network subscriber services that deliver secure broadcastquality audio and video to devices for display and/or recording. solutions that enable free competition would be achieved. 10. 21 .to the development of shared standards. Services may include broadcast type services like Video On Demand (VOD) and Interactive TV (ITV) services. This development will take years at the very least. and may ultimately prove too much of an obstacle. Ultimately. and this would affect consumer costs as well. In this situation. IPTV EXPLORATORY GROUP RECOMMENDATIONS & NEXT STEPS: 10. packet switched network that employs the IP protocol to transport the audio and video signals. consumers could freely choose their IP STBs from retailers and the competition between manufacturers would translate into decreasing consumer costs here too.

interconnection.10. 22 . As efforts in the IEG continue. An industry overall reference architecture for IPTV. Coordinate standards activities that relate to IPTV technologies. technical reports. Develop interoperability agreements. and implementation of IPTV systems/services by developing ATIS standards and facilitating related technical and operational activities. 2. including interface definitions and support of multiple access technologies. This forum will place an emphasis on North American and ATIS Member Company needs in coordination with other regional and international standards development organizations. The scope of the work in the IIF includes the following areas: 1. 2.3 MISSION & SCOPE: The IPTV Interoperability Forum (IIF) enables the interoperability. Provide a venue for interoperability activities. 4. 10. 3. but may not have visibility to other aspects of the application. Best practices for rapid and complete restoration of IP layer (not just physical layer) connectivity following severe outages (or attacks) of heavily loaded networks. or other ATIS standards where appropriate. Creation of interoperability standards and testing requirements of components in the video delivery network.2 RECOMMENDATION: The IEG recommends that a body of subject matter experts be formed under ATIS to give focus to issues that may impede the adoption of IPTV. This includes providing a liaison function between the various SDOs and forums that are each working on important components for multimedia. To emphasize its focus on IPTV. other objectives may be identified. These issues will be deferred to the IIF as initial objectives. Creation of standardized metrics/requirements for content security (digital rights management) and the quality of content delivery (Quality of Customer Experience). we recommend it be named the IPTV Interoperability Forum (IIF). 4. Provide a venue for the assessment of IPTV issues in the context of NGN directions.4 OBJECTIVES (INITIAL): The IEG has identified an initial set of issues that need resolution. The following is a partial listing of these issues. 10. a complete list is found in Section 4 of the full report: 1. 3.

via a user group entity). Based on these elements. channel-switching delays. IPTV utilizes IP networks. theoretically. Operation during and recovery from commercial power outages. as is the case with the other distribution methods. and analyze the current status of IPTV in Finland and abroad. the major differentiating factor between IPTV and other digital television distribution channels is interactivity. IPTV is inherently bidirectional. enabling the provision of interactive television services and the Internet on television from the moment the service is introduced on the market. since broadband connections inherently include a return path. such as televisions.. especially multicast routing). using IPTV rather than other digital television distribution technologies. 8. SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS: The purpose of this study was to compare IPTV with ³traditional´ digital television distribution technologies from the perspectives of consumers and technology. mobile stations and portable computers. evaluate IPTV from a business perspective. allowing consumers to use the same IPTV service on several immobile and mobile terminal devices.g. Implemented in broadband networks. such as video-on-demand and HDTV transmissions.5. the realization of interactivity is least complicated with IPTV. 11. 9. 23 .. Assuring that satisfactory end-to-end IP performance is actually achieved. there are no restrictions on the number of television channels provided.g. However. Reliability and robustness of service components and critical protocols (e. the likely development of IPTV in Finland over the next few years was assessed. network server responses) comparable to what users have experienced with non-IPTV services. IPTV¶s distribution capacity can be increased flexibly and. 6. which could require seamless signaling of end-to-end QoS parameters across both network and user interfaces. 7. It is possible to realize IPTV-level interactive services in the other distribution channels using the socalled hybrid distribution model. IPTV can be used to provide consumers with a larger variety of content and services on the television screen than other digital television distribution technologies. routing. From the consumers¶ perspective. Path establishment (call set-up. It is easier to implement services requiring high data capacities. IPTV has good prospects both technologically and performance-wise. Establishment of user expectations (e. recognize the opportunities represented by IPTV and the obstacles to its development.

000 homes.5 to 2. China and the United States are most likely to become the leading countries in IPTV 24 .264). which will advance the spread of IPTV. Copyright questions and obtaining IPTV distribution licenses are some of the most fundamental factors inhibiting the development of IPTV. The most significant IPTV countries at the moment are Hong Kong. In all likelihood. The differences in the development of IPTV between different countries are due to the developmental stage of the pay television market. will cut the capacity requirements of television services by half. operators will invest heavily in marketing Triple Play. MPEG4 (AVC/H. many consumers have already acquired digital STBs for other distribution channels. Moreover. voice and television services in the same package. the prerequisites for the development of IPTV involve the largest operators becoming active and consumers¶ knowledge of IPTV increasing. the availability of content for IPTV distribution and regulatory authorities¶ decisions. IPTV has already proven that it can be the fourth distribution channel for digital television. which offers cost savings to consumers while providing data.5 million IPTV subscribers worldwide. A crucial push will be provided by Triple Play packaging.In terms of technological functionality. which is slowing down the implementation of IPTV technology. there were an estimated 1. and attracting such homes to become IPTV subscribers will prove challenging without offering an extensive range of content. In the future. raise the costs of service development and slow down decreases in equipment prices. a more efficient video compression technology than the current one. The use of MPEG4 coding is most likely to become more common in 2007. and some years of development work. The upgrading of the current broadband infrastructure to IPTV capacity will require an estimated EUR 400 million in investments in Finland. and will introduce an element of competition to the currently closed area of cable television networks. and constructing the high-capacity connections required by television services will prove challenging in sparsely populated areas. This technology will enable the provision of versatile digital television services to a larger group of users than before.000 to 450. There are still many hindrances to the development of IPTV. Finnish broadband networks¶ current IPTV capacity will enable the distribution of IPTV to an estimated 350. In 2005. In addition. France. the United States and Italy. meaning that IPTV is in its early stages in countries outside Finland. the small production volumes of IPTV equipment are maintaining high prices. Hence. which is likely to cause compatibility problems with equipment. The distance limitations of xDSL technologies are a problem. For the time being. there are no defined standards for IPTV.

REFERENCES: http://www.omnitele.org/wiki/IPTV Berlocher.in/search?hl=en&q=report+on+internet+protocol+telev ision+pdf+file&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq=&gs_rfai= http://www.pdf http://en. V.mocalliance. VIII.google.gov.acma.p df http://www.wikipedia.atis. IV.org/images/Pages/IPTV%20Explained. Greg and Freyer.org/tops/IEG/ATIS_IPTV_EG_RPT_final.co. III. II.12.au/webwr/_assets/main/lib310210/iptv_and_internet_v ideo_in_aust/ http://www.org/industry/white_papers/IPTV_White_Paper%5B1 %5D/ http://www. VI. 25 .fi/press_releases/00000018_IPTV http://www. I.broadbandservicesforum. "IP And Satellite: Communications Worlds Merging" Via Satellite January 2009 p24-28 VII. Dan.

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