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” For more than 20 years. v . In recognition of their inquisitive nature. my graduate school students have made me remember the information that sign at IBM conveyed. at the IBM Corporation in upstate New York. this book is dedicated to the students of Georgia College and State University. when I commenced work at my ﬁrst full-time job. many desks were most notable by the placement of a sign that simply stated the word. A long time ago.Dedication Over the past two decades I have had the privilege to teach a series of graduate courses focused on various aspects of communications technology for Georgia College and State University. “Think. Teaching graduate school has enabled me to both convey information as well as learn from the inquisitive minds of students.
........................................ 127 vii ..................85 4............................................................................................2 2......2 Delivering IPTV ...............49 3............................64 4 The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV ...........3 The Potential Impact of IPTV...................1 Analog Television ....... xiii 1 Introduction to IPTV ...................................................................................................................................85 4..................57 3.................................................. ix Acknowledgments ...................16 2 Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure .................Contents Preface .............35 Convergence of Voice... 116 5...............................................................................1 The Concept of IPTV ..................................3 Lossy Compression ........22 The Pay-TV Market......21 2......................................................................................................... 105 5 Last Mile Solutions .........1 1...............................................................................................................................................................1 VDSL ..........2 Distribution into the Home .......4 Telephone Company Landline Erosion.... Data..........................................................................115 5.......................................2 Digital Television ....................................2 Applications................................3 2........1 2............................ xi About the Author.....49 3................................................................................................................................................... and Video ............................................................44 3 Television Concepts ................................................1 1.........11 1.........................................41 Evolution of Video Compression ............................................1 The TCP/IP Protocol Suite................................................................................................................
...... 145 7 Software Solutions..................................................................................................3 Summary..................................2 7...3 7..................................................................................................................................4 Microsoft’s Windows Media Player ....................... IPTV ........................................... 173 Summary.........................viii Contents 6 Hardware Components............153 7...................................... 177 8................ 165 Other Media Players ...................3 Servers ..1 7..........................1 Internet Television vs....2 Internet Television .. 143 6............................................................... 135 6.......................177 8......................135 6..........................................................................1 Set-Top Boxes .............. 154 Apple Computer’s QuickTime ...................................................... 174 8 Internet Television ...................................185 .................................................................................................. 184 Index ...... 178 8..........................................2 Media Center and Center Extenders .................................................................................................................................................................................
Although the acronym IPTV represents the “Internet” as its ﬁrst character pair. which is the subject of this book. a new one has appeared. I review both television concepts and the TCP/IP protocol suite in separate chapters in this book. obtain training. That acronym. the use of which is integral to enabling the large number ix . operate our personal computers. represents an emerging technology that could change the manner by which we receive home entertainment. Because readers can reasonably be expected to have diverse backgrounds. overthe-air broadcast stations. but it can also represent a series of technologies that provide television services to screens ranging in size from cell phone displays and personal computer monitors to large plasma and LCD televisions mounted on walls in homes or hung from the ceilings in airports.Preface Just when we thought we had mastered modern communications-related acronyms. In this book the reader will obtain a solid understanding of IP television in the form of IPTV. The text focuses on how IPTV operates. movies. That content can include conventional television shows. and the hardware and software that will make it a reality. IPTV refers to the use of the Internet Protocol that is required to be used to deliver television content. IPTV. how it may reach the home or ofﬁce. and even use our cell phones. and satellite television. I will also review several popular compression standards. In my review of television concepts. music videos. The acronym is an abbreviation for television transmitted over an Internet Protocol (IP) network. Instead. that term merely references the protocol used to transport television and does not mean that content has to be delivered over the Internet. and other types of combined audio and video offerings. how it will compete with traditional cable.
however. As an emerging technology. Because IPTV represents a series of technologies that can be used over any type of IP network.com. I will attempt to answer all persons within a week or two. Let me know if I dwelt too long on a particular topic or if I should add material on a particular topic. Thus. including the Internet. or any other comments you may wish to share with me. the concluding chapter of this book provides examples of the use of IPTV that will illustrate the potential of this evolving technology. Last. Because I frequently travel. any examination of the technology would not be complete without also discussing industry players and alliances. Gilbert Held Macon. or via e-mail to gil_held@yahoo. As a professional author. the development of IPTV resulted in a number of industry alliances as well as individual companies focusing their efforts on this technology. GA .x Preface of channels we can select for viewing when we subscribe to certain types of television services. Please feel free to write me either in care of my publisher. this discussion will provide the reader with a ﬁrm understanding of companies that are working with the technology and how their efforts can alter the manner by which television content is delivered. but not least. This examination will include so-called “last mile” solutions that in actuality can represent the manner by which communications organizations connect homes and ofﬁces to their infrastructure either directly via ﬁber or via short spans of a few hundred to a few thousand feet of copper cable. whose address is on the jacket of this book. I may not be able to immediately answer your letter or e-mail. we will examine the operation and utilization of hardware and software components required to view television content delivered over different types of IP networks. I truly value reader comments. Although this is an area that can be expected to undergo considerable change over the next few years.
I became aware of the many persons involved in the book production process. after I completed my ﬁrst manuscript.Acknowledgments A long time ago. my penmanship leaves a lot to be desired and makes me truly grateful for the efforts of my wife. From the typing of an initial manuscript to the editing process and the production of galley pages. Beverly. Beverly now uses Microsoft Word under Windows XP on both desktop and notebook computers to not only type this author’s manuscripts. as long as I have paper and pen I do not have to worry about whether or not I can use my computer on an airline or if my outlet converter will mate to the receptacle used in a hotel. the differences in electrical outlets and airline policies do not have an effect on pen and paper. I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge their efforts. there is a literal army of men and women whose efforts are crucial in producing the book you are now reading. through the cover design process and binding effort. every book idea will come to naught unless an author works with an editor who has the foresight and vision to back an effort focused on an emerging technology. Although this method of manuscript generation may appear awkward in today’s era of electronic gadgets. The preparation of a manuscript is a long and lengthy pr ocess. soul mate. Once again. xi . Commencing her effort on a 128kB Macintosh to type my ﬁrst book almost 30 years ago. and excellent typist. Regardless of where one travels. Although this author has many laptop and notebook computers. but also to type the index for each book. Of course. long ago he gave up modern technology for pen and paper. I am indebted to Rich O’Hanley at CRC Press for supporting my writing efforts. First and foremost.
. I would also like to thank the Taylor & Francis/Auerbach team in Boca Raton. Concerning that process. Once again. I am indebted to Claire Miller for guiding the manuscript through the book production process. Florida.xii Acknowledgments Once a manuscript reaches the publisher a number of behind-thescenes efforts occur. for their efforts in reviewing and editing my manuscript as well as for guiding the reviewed galley pages into the book you are reading.
xiii . he twice received the Karp Award for technical excellence in writing. that number includes second. Over the past 30 years. Gil earned an MSEE degree from New York University and the MSTM and MBA degrees from The American University. Georgia-based organization that specializes in the application of communications technology. Presently Gil is the director of 4-Degree Consulting. Although the number of books Gil has authored may appear to be quite high. Gil has also received awards from the American Publishers Institute and Federal Week. third. a Macon. In recognition of Gil’s writing talents. Gil has authored approximately 100 books and 300 articles focused on communications technology and personal computing.About the Author Gilbert Held is an award-winning author and lecturer who specializes in the application of communications technology. After earning a BS in Electrical Engineering from Widener University. and even fourth editions of several books that were researched and written over a long period of time.
So. In concluding this chapter we will examine the potential impact of IPTV. 1. including standard over-the-air. including television.Chapter 1 Introduction to IPTV The purpose of this introductory chapter is to acquaint the reader with the technology the book will focus on. Because IPTV represents a series of technologies. we will primarily focus on the delivery of television shows. and similar content via private IP-based networks. we will compare that deﬁnition to other television delivery methods. digital satellite.” This deﬁnition of IPTV not only is very simple but also stresses that the Internet does not need to play a role in the delivery of television or any other 1 . we will conclude this chapter by examining the existing and potential utilization of IPTV. that is delivered via the use of the Internet Protocol (IP). let’s grab a soda and perhaps a few munchies and begin our exploration of IPTV.1 The Concept of IPTV We can deﬁne IPTV as representing “digital video content. Using the preceding information as a base. This information will enable us to obtain an appreciation for how IPTV can be used as well as allow us to note the advantages and disadvantages associated with its use. Once that is accomplished. beginning with a deﬁnition of the technology. and cable television. prior to doing so. we will examine the network elements common to different types of IPTV services to obtain an appreciation for the general manner by which video content can be delivered to consumers over both public and private IP-based networks. movies. However.
This means that our brief deﬁnition of IPTV covers a wide range of both existing and potential activities. registered U. As previously mentioned. Prior to discussing in more detail a few examples of the delivery of video content via IP-based networks. football games. represent the free broadcast of a video stream.” That mnemonic should not be confused with IP/TV. rock concerts. Thus. television shows. Instead. There are literally hundreds of examples of the use of this technology on the Internet.2 Understanding IPTV type of video content. let’s turn our attention to two major Internet-based video services. the term IPTV does not restrict content to that provided by broadcast television nor does it imply that delivery of content has to occur over the Internet. full feature movies. such as boxing matches. and full feature movies to various types of special events. the company best known for its routers. Because IPTV requires the use of the IP only as a delivery mechanism. As we will note both later in this chapter as well as in other chapters throughout this book. IPTV can operate over any IP-based network. Public IP-Based Network Utilization In this section we will turn our attention to the delivery of video content via the Internet. and a variety of special events. . IPTV represents a broad term used to reference the delivery of a wide variety of video content using the IP as a mechanism for transporting content. or even Broadway musicals. which represents a public IP-based network. including the Internet. Other examples of the use of IPTV on the Internet range from the downloading of music videos. Examples of IPTV content can range in scope from music videos to television shows. Some of those activities could include downloading a movie or music video via the Internet for viewing now or at a later date or subscribing to a television service that will be delivered to a homeowner via the installation of a private network that will provide the delivery of television content through the use of the IP. IP can be used to deliver various types of content over both the Internet and private IP-based networks. a few words are in order concerning the mnemonic “IPTV. To obtain a better appreciation for the operation of IPTV over the Internet.S. Cisco uses IP/TV to reference a series of products developed to transport television content over the Internet or via private IP-based networks. Some examples. IPTV refers to the use of the IP as a delivery mechanism that can use the Internet. which is an active. such as the now famous Victoria’s Secret annual fashion show. trademark owned by Cisco. such as the launch of the Space Shuttle to the movement of the Mars lander when it made its ﬁrst steps on the Red Planet. or IPTV can be used to deliver video content over a private IP-based network.
CinemaNow was founded in 1999 and is ﬁnancially backed by several key companies. Blockbuster. CinemaNow offers legal content from a library of more than 6500 movies. Thus. Inc. Although the term “IP video” is probably better suited for the delivery of all types of video via an IP network. live events. including Lions Gate Entertainment.” because IPTV can be used to deliver movies. represents one of two key players in the delivery of IPTV content to consumers over the Internet. Concerning the latter. and Microsoft. we will follow industry practice and use the term IPTV to refer to the delivery of all types of video content. including television.movielink. Those Internet-based video services are operated by CinemaNow and MovieLink. users could download and select from approximately 550 feature-length titles and 200 music videos that are available for compatible portable video players or connect their video players to a television set for viewing.Introduction to IPTV 3 Currently. Although both CinemaNow and MovieLink offer thousands of movies on an on-demand basis.. including television. television programs. we will now look at each organization in more detail. TV shows. In the latter part of 2005 CinemaNow announced the availability of high-deﬁnition content and support for portable media devices. Because CinemaNow and MovieLink are representative of public IP-based content delivery. Under the agreement. this explains why our deﬁnition of IPTV included the phrase “digital video content.com) or as streaming content. CinemaNow announced in September 2005 that it would make its download service available on new portable video players from the French consumer electronics manufacturer Archos as well as bundle new players with two free downloads from the company.cinemanow. whose Web address is www. and in general a wide range of videos that have in common the fact that delivery occurs via an IP network.com. and music videos from more than 200 licensors via downloading from its Web site (www. CinemaNow CinemaNow. music concerts. Cisco Systems. Currently. MovieLink represents an online video-rental service that was founded by . two major Internet-based video services provide on-demand digital content to people operating personal computers via a broadband connection. as of the time this book was prepared they were not providing the typical content associated with a television viewing audience. MovieLink A second major player in the IPTV market where delivery occurs over the Internet is MovieLink.
Featuring a 2.S. the new iPod. and Warner Brothers. director. Paramount. it takes approximately 80 minutes to download a movie.5-inch color display. ME. Sony Pictures. such as Windows 2000.com/itunes) began offering the latest episodes of ABC and Disney television shows. the availability of thousands of video music and television shows should signiﬁcantly increase the use of the Internet for various types of IPTV operations. including Lost and Desperate Housewives. The Web site also allows customers to select from a list of more than 2000 music videos. at which point the ﬁlm is automatically deleted. for $1. a program that controls the movie downloading process as well as its playback. a public-based IP network. Users can also search for movies by actor. Currently the MovieLink Web site is accessible only to U. its consumer-friendly ability to store and replay video makes it a market driver for the use of the Internet to download video onto PCs and then transfer the downloaded video content onto the new iPod. drama. in 2005.apple. Universal. they have 24 hours to ﬁnish viewing it. or Oscar ﬁlms. which can be purchased with either a 30-GB or a 60-GB disk.99 per title to download a ﬁlm and store it on their computer for up to 30 days. residents who have a broadband connection with a minimum data rate of 128 kbps. is capable of storing up to 150 hours of video. with 2 GB of free disk space. Renting a movie requires that you ﬁrst download and install the MovieLink Manager. In addition. a few words are in order concerning Apple Computer’s newest iPod that became available to the consumer during October 2005. or XP. In September 2005 MovieLink had a library of approximately 900 ﬁlms.4 Understanding IPTV ﬁve major movie studios: MGM. Private IP-Based Network Utilization We have discussed a few IPTV-related applications that are occurring over the Internet. Apple Computer’s iPod In concluding our brief examination of IPTV occurring over the public IP-based network. the computer must run a version of Windows at or above Windows 98. Once they begin viewing the ﬁlm. Apple Computer’s iTunes Web site (www. such as action. The MoveLink Web site allows customers to search for movies by category. In fact. According to the company. Although iPod downloading was in its infancy at the time this book was written.99 per show. Although the iPod does not transmit video. Viewers pay from 99 cents to $4. MovieLink allows users to purchase an additional 24 hours of movie viewing and supports both RealPlayer and Windows Media formats. In this section we will examine . or title.
a few words are in order concerning the rationale for ﬁrms we think of as telephone companies entering the IPTV marketplace.” Similarly. Over the past ﬁve years. prior to doing so. either to the neighborhood or directly to the customer’s premises. who. Through the installation of ﬁber. which operate large private IP-based networks. In comparison. conventional telephone companies are experiencing a signiﬁcant loss in both customers and revenue that could be replaced by providing an IPTV service in competition with cable television and satellite television. and the addition of unlimited long distance typically increases the phone bill by another $20 per month. video. cable television providers have introduced Voice-over-IP (VoIP) on their cable networks. so too has the number of homeowners and apartment renters who have disconnected their landlines. telephone companies are entering the IPTV market because that’s where the money resides. Thus. Thus. sufﬁcient bandwidth becomes available to provide television services in competition with cable television and satellite operators. However. When subscribers add high-speed Internet access and VoIP telephone service to their cable TV bill. local telephone service typically costs the consumer between $30 and $40 per month. For example. A second reason for providing an IPTV service resembles the response of the famous criminal Willie Sutton. basic cable TV video service costs more than $40 per month. As wireless phone usage has grown. Projections indicate that by 2010 more than 10 million Americans will have either disconnected a second telephone line or dropped their primary landline altogether in favor of VoIP or wireless cell phone service or due to the use of both technologies. said he did so because “that’s where the money is. with digital video adding approximately $20 per month to one’s cable TV bill.Introduction to IPTV 5 some examples of the use of private IP-based networks for the delivery of video content. At the time this book was prepared both SBC Communications and Verizon. were in the process of installing several billion dollars’ worth of ﬁber communications in their service areas as a mechanism to provide voice. which now have approximately two million subscribers. and data communications services to their customers. Rationale Conventional telephone companies are under a gun that is causing them to lose their customer base. when asked why he robbed banks. In this section we will brieﬂy discuss the plans of SBC Communications and Verizon concerning the delivery of video services over the ﬁber networks they are in the process of constructing. the bill approaches or exceeds $100 per month. telephone companies that can develop .
multimedia interactive programming guides. 2005. SBC Communications began testing an IP-based television service built on Microsoft’s TV IPTV Edition platform in June 2004. The FTTN service will provide 20 to 25 Mbps of capacity to each customer whereas the FTTP service will enable up to 39 Mbps of capacity to the customer. TVs. such as IP television. let’s turn our attention to the services being rolled out by SBC Communications and Verizon. SBC Communications had not renamed itself by the time this book was developed. video on demand. customers will be able to access all services over a single network connection as well as have the ability to share access to those services from any number of IP-enabled household devices. customizable channel lineups. Although the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) approved SBC Communications’ takeover of AT&T and Verizon Communications’ purchase of MCI on October 31. such as PCs. For example. the company expects to connect 18 million homes to its network by the end of 2007. VoIP. Under Project Lightspeed. Because SBC Communications’ IPTV offering will occur via two-way broadband communications. SBC Communications announced its Project Lightspeed in early 2005 to take advantage of its collaboration with Microsoft. it is able to transmit alerts and notiﬁcations to customers watching television beyond the simple setting of program notiﬁcations available from cable television and digital satellite. SBC’s Project Lightspeed represents the company’s initiative to deploy ﬁber closer to customer locations to enable provision of a variety of IP-based services. and telephones. Thus. SBC Communications had announced that it would adopt the AT&T name once its planned acquisition of that company was approved. According to SBC. SBC Communications could conﬁgure its system to allow customers to enable the display of caller ID and instant messaging on their TV screens.6 Understanding IPTV a competitive IPTV service can look forward to a potential revenue stream in addition to retaining a portion of their customer base that is migrating to cable television. For both services . Now that we have an appreciation for the reasons why telephone companies are expanding into providing IPTV. event notiﬁcations. PDAs. and other features. digital video recording. and ultra-fast Internet access. set-top boxes. using both ﬁber-to-the-neighborhood (FTTN) and ﬁber-to-the-premises (FTTP). The IP-based TV service is expected to include instant channel changing. SBC Communications At the time this book was written. and both companies began ﬁeld trials of IPTV during mid-2005. this author will refer to the company by both its pre-merger name and its anticipated post-merger name.
cable television. In addition to IPTV. including highdeﬁnition TV (HDTV). including more than 20 in high deﬁnition. represents a large former Regional Bell Operating Company (RBOC) that has signiﬁcantly grown in both service area and offerings since its divesture by AT&T during the l980s.95 per month.Introduction to IPTV 7 IPTV will allow up to four high-quality TV str eams. The speed of the connection governs the number of multiple TV services (different programs) that can be viewed at the same time. A standard-deﬁnition set-top box can be rented for $3. The third type of set-top box combines high deﬁnition with a digital video recorder and can be rented for $12.95 per month. we will discuss SBC Communications’ Lightspeed offering in additional detail. For customers with deep pockets. In addition. we can compare its general capability to a trio of competitive television delivery services — over-the-air broadcast television. Texas. when we turn our attention to industry players and alliances. Verizon was expanding its service to several other cities in Texas as well as expanded its offerings to cities in Florida. a city 30 miles west of Dallas. a 5-Mbps connection may enable the viewing of only a single channel while using the Internet.95 per month. Later in this book. During September 2005 Verizon began selling its IPTV service after commencing the construction of ﬁber connections to homes in half of the 29 states where it offers telephone service. a 30-Mbps connection is available at a preliminary cost of $200 per month. and satellite television. whereas an HDTV set-top box is rented for $9. now that we have a general appreciation for IPTV. Marketed under the name “Fios TV. . for $39. whereas the 15-Mbps connection should provide the ability to simultaneously view three or four different programs on different television sets while another person in the home is surﬁng the Web. Verizon offers three set-top boxes. Virginia. FiOS for the home provides a 15-Mbps connection for $45 per month. and a 5-Mbps connection costs $35 per month.95 per month. Although video compression can signiﬁcantly reduce bandwidth requirements. like SBC Communications.” the service offered customers more than 180 digital video and music channels. However. Verizon’s FiOS service was ﬁrst launched in Keller. Along with its FiOS service. Verizon expanded its offerings to 1800 video-on-demand titles by the end of 2005. Verizon Verizon. the single SBC Communications customer connection will support VoIP and data services that will provide a 6-Mbps downstream and 1-Mbps upstream capability. and California. We will discuss Verizon’s offerings in more detail later in this book.
Comparison to Other TV Delivery Methods
We can subdivide our comparison into two areas: ﬁnancial and technical. Thus, we will compare and contrast IPTV delivered over a private IP-based network to over-the-air broadcast television, cable television, and satellite television by brieﬂy examining the ﬁnancial and technical aspects of each. Of course, later in this book we will probe much deeper into the technical aspects of television in general and, speciﬁcally, the manner by which IPTV is delivered to customers.
From a broad ﬁnancial perspective, IPTV delivered over a private IP-based network represents a subscription service that requires customers to pay a monthly fee for service plus the monthly cost for one or more set-top boxes. Although over-the-air broadcast television is a free service to consumers, it is paid for by advertising revenue. In addition, unless a consumer is located in a large metropolitan area, the number of over-the-air broadcast stations that may be viewable through the use of built-in television or rooftop antennas is usually very limited. This explains why a high percentage of homeowners subscribe to cable television and satellite television services. That is, such services provide access to hundreds of television channels. IPTV is best compared and ﬁnancially equivalent to cable television and satellite television. Concerning cable television services, although most cable operators offer a basic package of analog stations without requiring the homeowner to rent a set-top box, such boxes are necessary to subscribe to digital and premium services. If a homeowner subscribes to satellite television, because all offerings are in digital format, a set-top box or decoder is required for each television. Table 1.1 provides a general ﬁnancial comparison between IPTV delivered via a private IP-based network and the troika of existing television delivery methods.
Table 1.1 Financial Comparison of IPTV to Existing TV Delivery Methods
Financial Feature IPTV Over-the-Air Broadcast TV Cable TV Satellite TV
Monthly subscription fee Set-top box fee Digital channel fee
Yes Yes No
No N/A No*
Yes Yes Yes
Yes Yes No
* Existing over-the-air analog broadcasting is scheduled to terminate within two years, to be replaced by digital broadcasting. Analog television sets will then require a converter box to receive over-the-air digital broadcast signals.
Introduction to IPTV
From a technical perspective, over-the-air broadcast television stations, cable television operators, and satellite television providers operate similarly, broadcasting television channels at predeﬁned frequencies, which enables subscribers to tune their television sets or set-top boxes to the channel they wish to view. Figure 1.1 illustrates an example of the manner by which a subscriber would view a channel when subscribing to a cable television or satellite service. In this example, note that both cable television and satellite operators simultaneously broadcast all of their channel offerings over a range of frequencies. Customers control a tuner built into their television or set-top box directly by pressing up and down buttons on the TV or set-top box or they use a remote control unit that turns the tuner on the TV or set-top box to a different frequency range when they change the channel. Because analog television channels require approximately 6 MHz of bandwidth, when you use the remote control to switch from channel 2 to channel 3, in effect your timer is switched to display a different 6 MHz of bandwidth on the coaxial cable that provides cable television service to your home. If you subscribe to a satellite television service, switching from channel 2 to channel 3 also switches the bandwidth. However, satellite operators provide an all-digital service in which data compression reduces the bandwidth of each channel, which reduces the frequency that is switched. Although both cable television and satellite operate very similarly with respect to the use of a tuner to select the fr equency for a particular channel, IPTV is a completely different technology with respect to the delivery of video content. IPTV can be considered to represent a softwarebased “pull–push” technology. Here the term “pull” represents the subscriber transmitting via an IP a request for a particular TV channel, movie, video musical, or similar product. The request is received by the IPTV provider, which pushes the video stream from a server to the requestor using the IP address of the requestor as the destination address. Note that because a single video stream ﬂows in response to a request, this
Figure 1.1 Viewing a cable television or satellite television channel.
minimizes the bandwidth required for the delivery of a television channel. Whereas cable television and satellite operators broadcast a large selection of channels at the same time, which requires the use of a tuner to select a desired channel, IPTV can be considered to represent an on-demand service, although as we will note later in this book, some types of video may be transmitted as broadcast streams to selected locations within an IPTV network. Thus, in most cases the 600+-MHz bandwidth required by cable television and satellite operators can be signiﬁcantly reduced by an IPTV provider. In fact, according to SBC Communications and Verizon, a typical home with a 15- to 20-Mbps data channel connection to the network can receive between three and four simultaneous television channels via IPTV as well as obtain a VoIP capability and a high-speed Internet connection. Although the amount of bandwidth required to provide an IPTV capability is signiﬁcantly less than the bandwidth provided by cable television and satellite operators, it is still more than that available from many types of Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) facilities provided by RBOCs. This explains why SBC Communications and Verizon are currently installing extensive ﬁber-optic-based networks as a mechanism to provide IPTV-based subscription services. The higher bandwidth of ﬁber-optic cable routed either to the neighborhood or to the customer premises enables each subscriber to obtain sufﬁcient bandwidth to view three or four different television channels while receiving a VoIP capability and a high-speed Internet connection.
Potential IPTV Features
Because IPTV represents an all-digital service that can have its video presentation scaled to different types of monitors, it has the ability to provide features beyond the capability of other television distribution mechanisms. For example, IPTV set-top boxes via software could enable the simultaneous placement of four pictures on the screen that represent four customer channel requests. In addition, incoming telephone Short Message Service (SMS) messages, e-mail, and caller ID could be displayed on a customer’s television at a predeﬁned location. Combine this with the ability to enable customers to select the viewing of video rentals and a virtually unlimited number of high-deﬁnition content and IPTV could represent a quantum leap over existing television delivered via over-the-air broadcast stations and cable and satellite operators. This probably explains why many forecasting organizations predict that by 2008 as many as 20 million homes will subscribe to an IPTV service. If we use a fee of $50 per month for the IPTV service, to include one set-top box, the revenue stream from this emerging service could be approximately $12 billion per year in a few years. Thus, any way one examines the potential of IPTV, it is hard
Introduction to IPTV
not to note that it provides the potential to enable the RBOCs to negate the revenue loss associated with what until recently represented their core revenue market, the home telephone. Otherwise, without IPTV, it is possible that the telephone companies we grew up with could go the way of the companies that delivered ice blocks to homes prior to the development of the refrigerator. Now that we have an appreciation for the lower bandwidth requirements of IPTV in comparison to the conventional manner by which we view television, let’s turn our attention to some of the applications that can be supported by this relatively new technology.
Although there are many “ﬂavors” of IPTV, we can view the technology as a mechanism for delivering high-quality digital video content over public and private IP-based networks. Because IP-based networks have a bidirectional communications capability, developers can create IPTV technology that enables customers to select what they want to watch as well as when they want to watch it. With the preceding in mind, let’s turn our attention to a few of the potential applications that IPTV can support.
First and foremost, IPTV represents a technology that will enable telephone companies to compete with standard over-the-air television, cable television, and satellite operators for the entertainment budget of homeowners. Although homeowner entertainment is expected to represent the largest application of IPTV in terms of both subscribers and revenue, it is just one of a series of applications that can be supported by the technology. Table 1.2 lists eight IPTV applications, including the general category of
Table 1.2 Potential IPTV Applications
Homeowner entertainment Digital television On-demand video Business TV to the desktop Distance learning Corporate communications Mobile phone television Video chat
homeowner entertainment, that can be expected to achieve signiﬁcant growth over the next few years. In the remainder of this section we will brieﬂy describe and discuss each of the other seven applications.
As previously discussed in this chapter, IPTV can be considered to represent a pull–push technology whereby a subscriber makes a request to a service provider for a particular video stream. Because digitized television is both a very popular entertainment provider as well as very suitable for being compressed and carried via IPTV, it represents the primary application for the technology. In addition, because a service provider may have to transmit only what is requested, unlike cable and satellite, IPTV could theoretically provide an unlimited number of viewing channels, which would enable the service provider to offer a more diverse content than conventional competitors that simultaneously broadcast every channel regardless of whether anyone is watching them. Thus, the architectural difference between IPTV and broadcast television enables the former to offer a more diverse content, assuming the service provider can acquire signiﬁcant content to match subscriber requirements.
Although subscribers to cable and satellite television have been able for many years to obtain pay-per-view movies and sporting events, that capability pales in comparison to on-demand video that can be provided through IPTV technology. The key reason why IPTV on-demand video can be considered far superior to pay-per-view resides in the fact that the former can provide virtually unlimited program content whereas the latter is restricted to a handful of broadcast channels. One recent example of IPTV on-demand video is the Apple Computer iTunes Music Store, which in October 2005 began selling episodes of the hit television series Lost for $1.99 the day after the show aired on broadcast television. In a deal with Walt Disney Co., the parent of ABC Television, Apple also offers past and current episodes of Desperate Housewives, Night Stalker, and That’s So Raven to its customers. By the end of October 2005, Apple Computer Company was offering more than two million songs, 20,000 podcasts, 2000 music videos, and a variety of ABC and Disney television series that customers could download to their Mac or PC and then synchronize the content onto their iPod. Apple’s newest iPod, released in October 2005, could be obtained with either a 30-GB
Introduction to IPTV
or 60-GB disk and a 2.5-inch 320 × 240 pixel Thin Film Transistor (TFT) display, enabling customers to store up to 25,000 photos, 15,000 songs, and up to 150 hours of video.
Business TV to Desktop
Although the primary market for IPTV is the individual consumer and household, the technology is also well suited for business applications. One such application is streaming business television to the desktop. In a business environment, each LAN workstation can be assigned a distinct IP address. Doing so makes it possible for different video streams to be directed to different employees. For example, some employees might require instant access to CNBC whereas other employees could require access to Bloomberg, Reuters, or another ﬁnance-oriented program. Because IPTV can be scaled on a screen, it also becomes possible for employees to view the requested business channel or channels while performing other computer operations using a different portion of their PC screen.
In an academic environment it is possible to be in two places at the same time through the power of distance learning facilities. In fact, this author has used distant learning to teach a data communications course in Macon, Georgia, that was simultaneously broadcast onto video monitors located in Millegeville, Georgia, the home of Georgia College & State University, and the learning center at Robbins Air Force Base. Although distance learning can be accomplished through the use of conventional teleconferencing equipment, when performed through the use of IPTV the efﬁciency associated with reaching students at distant locations can signiﬁcantly increase. This is because conventional distance learning that is based on the use of teleconferencing equipment results in a central monitor at distant locations. Not only do all students have to focus their attention on a single monitor, but in addition, a microphone has to be passed around by a proctor at each distant location to the students who wish to talk to the instructor giving the lecture. In comparison, the use of IPTV can signiﬁcantly improve distance learning because the image of the distant instructor can be directed onto the PC monitor of each student workstation while a microphone connected to each computer enables students to converse with the instructor without having to wait for a microphone to be passed through the classroom.
Another signiﬁcant advantage of IPTV within a distance learning environment is the fact that, similar to the previous discussion about business TV to the desktop, it can be scaled on a PC screen. This would allow distance learning courses on programming and other topics to have students both view and hear the instructor while they perform different exercises. Because software can be developed to enable an instructor to view student activities, it’s possible for a student’s work to be viewed by the instructor. Similarly, with appropriate programming, the instructor could display the efforts of one student on a designated portion of each student’s PC screen, which would signiﬁcantly enhance instructor–student interaction.
In most organizations, the president or a corporate ofﬁcer often needs to address employees. In a conventional environment this requirement is commonly satisﬁed by scheduling the use of one or several auditorium sessions during which the corporate ofﬁcer explains the reason why earnings went up or down, the effect of a new product line, changes to the employee beneﬁt plan, or another subject that needs to be disseminated to a broad range of employees. The conventional use of an auditorium to announce a new policy or shed light on a recent event can require a signiﬁcant amount of time and effort. If the auditorium was previously scheduled for another event, then the logistics of moving that event to a different time and venue could be considerable. In addition, there can be a considerable loss of employee productivity because the use of an auditorium requires time for employees to arrive and depart from the site as well as time for employees to move through the facility to a seat. In comparison, the use of IPTV can result in corporate communications being only a mouse-click away from any employee. That is, a corporate ofﬁcer can tape a message that becomes available for downloading via IPTV. Employees could then be alerted to the availability of the newly created video via an e-mail containing a URL to click. Then, employees could view the video at their leisure, with no need to stop what they are working on to visit the auditorium or a conference room. Thus, the use of IPTV for corporate communications can signiﬁcantly enhance employee productivity.
Mobile Phone Television
Currently, mobile phone television is being developed to allow reception of broadcast television. This means that the ﬁrst generation of mobile
motels. it becomes possible for users to download video content into their phone. Then. ranging in scope from American Idol and current events to science and education. Thus. Chat rooms are used primarily to discuss a variety of topics. A variation of video chat can be expected to result in a change in the commonly used “messenger” programs offered by Yahoo and other Web portals. and other communications capabilities to the product. users with that type of phone will be limited with respect to the content they can watch. allowing each user to scroll through the screen to view other members of the chat room as well as to click on the image of a person to display that person’s image on the full screen. especially when the chat facility requires individuals to provide identiﬁcation prior to being able to access the facility. hotels. Through the use of IPTV it becomes possible to develop a video chat facility. Although people usually enter a chat room anonymously. and other locations where mobile phone operators can connect to the Internet. In addition. mobile phones can be expected to be used in hot zones at airports. Similar to current chat programs. each person could mount a camera with a built-in microphone on their monitor that would transmit audio and video to the video chat room operator. through the inclusion of either a secure digital card slot or a miniature disk drive. WiFi. messenger . they could view the content at their leisure. As this action occurs. we can reasonably expect the addition of higher capacity secure digital cards. Video Chat One of the more popular features associated with the use of the Internet is chat rooms. Starbucks. perhaps miniature disk drives. Although chat rooms are a popular mechanism for exchanging ideas and political views. the need to type responses signiﬁcantly delays the interaction between people. which allows certain other people to communicate with that person via text messages. Once a person joins a chat room they can observe the identiﬁers of the other members currently in the room as well as what they are saying in the form of typed text.Introduction to IPTV 15 phones with a television viewing capability will be limited to viewing over-the-air broadcast television offerings. this is not always true. a user’s screen could be subdivided to display a number of chat room participants. Using a messenger program. commonly hosted by different Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and Web portals. similar to the manner by which users of the relatively new Apple Computer video iPod can view video. a person creates a “buddy” or “friends” list. Through applicable software. As mobile phones with television viewing capability evolve. This capability will enable mobile phone users to obtain access to signiﬁcantly increased content.
16 Understanding IPTV programs depend on the skill of the people typing queries and responses and could be signiﬁcantly enhanced through the use of a video capability. and the home or residence network.2.2 illustrates the relationship of the IPTV network elements and the data ﬂow from the content provider to the consumer. .2 Key IPTV network elements. For example. 1. it is important to note that the network elements can be provided by more than a single vendor. Those elements include a video headend.3 The Potential Impact of IPTV In this introductory chapter we brieﬂy examined the concept behind IPTV and a few of its existing and potential applications. Figure 1. Each of the applications mentioned has significant advantages when performed through the use of IPTV instead of conventional video services. if a consumer is using IPTV simply to download a movie or music video via the public Internet. Summary In this section we brieﬂy looked at eight existing and emerging applications that could occur via IPTV. In concluding this chapter we will focus attention on the network elements required to provide an IPTV system that can compete with cable and satellite providers and the impact the technology can be expected to have on both the consumer and the industry. the use of IPTV technology can be expected to be driven by the advantages it provides in convenience and worker productivity. In examining the relationship of the four key IPTV network elements shown in Figure 1. a service provider’s access network. Network Elements An IPTV system can be considered to represent four major elements that are both generic and common to any system provider’s infrastructure. the video headend could represent one company and the service Figure 1. a service provider’s IP network. Thus.
a series of TV channels in the form of data streams is simultaneously broadcast over each link of a network. the video headend. Now that we have an appreciation for how different organizations can provide different elements of an IPTV system. which can be thought of as representing a conventional TV channel. if the consumer were accessing a movie or TV show via a private IP network. so it can ﬂow onto the branch. and service provider access network would be provided by a single company.Introduction to IPTV 17 provider’s IP network could consist of a series of IP networks interconnected at a peering point to form the Internet backbone. Each data stream is copied only when there is a network branch. the service provider’s access network could represent an ISP. In comparison. After encoding. let’s focus our attention on each of the elements and their function. popular IPTV channels are more than likely transmitted as IP multicast data streams. The headend takes each data stream and encodes it into a digital video format. Then. The Video Headend The video headend represents the point within a network where content is captured and formatted for distribution over the IP network. Customers on each network branch then join a multicast group. the IP network video headend could be connected to satellite receivers to receive broadcast television and premium television. is encapsulated into an IP data stream and transmitted to a speciﬁc IP destination address in response to a customer request for a particular channel. it is quite possible that that company would provide an end-to-end service. Later in this book we will examine several MPEG standards in some detail. and the home network could consist of a router and wireless LAN products obtained from one or more manufacturers. which are broadcast via satellite. MPEG is a mnemonic for Motion Picture Experts Group. In fact. each data stream. which minimizes the amount of data that ﬂows over the network. That is. with a single copy of each data stream ﬂowing over the network. With multicast transmission. which is technically referred to as unicast transmission. Other programming could be received via a terrestrial ﬁber-based connection or occur via the use of DVD or hard disk servers to provide a content-on-demand service. service provider IP network. including any required home networking equipment. an organization that develops standards for compressing still and moving images and audio. As an alternative to the transmission of TV channels to individual destinations. which enables multiple customers to view a single data stream that ﬂows . such as HBO and Showtime. such as MPEG-2 or MPEG-4. The video headend for an IP network is similar to the headends used by cable television and digital satellite systems.
the channel lineup ﬂows in the form of encoded video streams. a specially requested movie could be transmitted directly to a single subscriber via unicast transmission. Over the service provider network. Multicast transmission can signiﬁcantly reduce the ﬂow of data over the network.3 compares three popular methods of IP addressing: unicast. a service provider can transmit one IP data stream per broadcast channel from the video headend through the IP network onto the service provider’s access network. Then. Those ﬂows can consist of data transmitted as unicast. and broadcast transmission. multicast. The TV guide that ﬂows to each subscriber could be a broadcast transmission. whereas with broadcast addressing data is read by every station. In comparison. Instead of having separate data streams of the match sent to each individual subscriber.3 Comparing addressing methods. . tens of thousands of subscribers could tune into the match by joining the multicast group that carries the match. The Service Provider Network The service provider network can be considered as a delivery system that enables data to ﬂow from the core of the network that is connected to the video headend to the network edge. With unicast addressing data is sent to a speciﬁc destination. over a majority of the IP network. which minimizes transmission on the backbone as well as represents a TV channel under an IPTV service. Figure 1. requiring stations to become a member of a multicast group in order to view an IPTV multicast transmission. Thus. and multicast. the IPTV operator could transmit the match as a multicast broadcast.18 Understanding IPTV Figure 1. broadcast. consider a heavyweight boxing match that tens of thousands of people may wish to view. For example. multicast addressing can be viewed as falling between the two. Using multicast transmission.
convergence. such as SBC Communications (AT&T) and Verizon. the home network is in an evolutionary stage of development. VoIP. the access network is commonly referred to as the “last mile” connection. Currently. That connection will enable multiple television channels. The Home Network The last major network element in an IPTV environment is the home network. Because telephone companies. the method used for the transport facility on the access network corresponds to the offering of RBOCs. The Access Network The access network provides connectivity from the customer’s premises to the backbone network operated by the service provider. let’s focus our attention on the potential impact of this evolving television service. The home network is responsible for distributing IPTV services throughout the home. . Now that we have an appreciation for the major network elements associated with an IPTV service. Those areas are content. such as passive optical networking (PON). Wireless Ethernet can provide data rates up to approximately 100 Mbps. Impact of IPTV The impact of IPTV on the delivery of video can be expected to be most pronounced in three areas. the service provider will use the access network to the subscriber’s premises to provide a single high-bandwidth connection. and high-speed Internet access to be provided over a common connection to the service provider’s network. The endpoints in the home network are telephones. very-high-bitrate Digital Subscriber Lines (VDSL). and the HomePlug AV speciﬁcation enables data rates up to 200 Mbps to be transmitted over the electrical wiring in a home or ofﬁce. with a transition occurring from wired Ethernet to wireless Ethernet and HomePlug audio-visual (AV) equipment. the home computer or computers. are the primary developers of IPTV networks used to transport television content along with movies and other types of video content. In telephone terminology. In an IPTV environment. and different types of ﬁber-optic technology. and interactivity.Introduction to IPTV 19 whereas the popular channel lineup could ﬂow to all subscribers via multicast transmission. Those offerings include several versions of Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Lines (ADSL). and the set-top boxes that are required for each television.
such as meter reading. IPTV enables the consumer not only to select television channels but also to choose from a virtually unlimited number of movies. This makes it possible to use a television remote control. and other types of content that will be delivered on demand. or perform other functions that currently represent items on a drawing board rather than reality. Interactivity Interactivity represents the third major impact that IPTV can be expected to have on the existing industry method of delivering television. Thus. other applications. game console. initiate a video chat session. the bidirectional capability of IP networks can be expected to result in the development of applications that would otherwise be difﬁcult or impossible to perform with conventional television delivery systems. This means that the ability to promote the advantage of IPTV will require the service provider to negotiate agreements with broadcast television and movie studios to offer an expanded content above and beyond that available from conventional television delivery entities. or other device to select viewing content. that provide only a handful of on-demand programming. Convergence Through the installation of a high-speed access line. videos. An IP network provides a bidirectional transmission facility. in effect promoting the convergence of applications onto a common transport facility. it becomes possible to provide customers with the ability to receive video content access the Internet and use VoIP via a common connection to the service provider’s network. such as cable television and satellite television operators. Thus. may eventually occur over the common access line. computer keyboard. we can reasonably expect available content to be several orders of magnitude beyond what conventional television now provides. In addition. answer a telephone call through the speakers of a television.20 Understanding IPTV Content As previously explained in this chapter. the use of an IP network can be expected to facilitate many applications to occur over a single service delivery network. Assuming IPTV service providers are successful. .
the convergence of voice. Commencing our effort by revisiting problems that are eroding telephone company core wireline voice communications services. we will also examine several additional drivers. and competition. we brieﬂy examined the rationale for telephone companies beginning to offer television-type services to their customers. the evolution of broadband and video compression technologies. we will also examine the IPTV infrastructure being developed or used to provide different types of IPTV services.Chapter 2 Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure In Chapter 1. we will describe and discuss several new technologies and marketing techniques of competitive companies that serve as market drivers for different types of IPTV services. where voice 21 . which introduced the different applications associated with IPTV technology. Those drivers include the pay-TV market. In addition. which will have two standarddeﬁnition televisions (SDTVs) and two high-deﬁnition televisions (HDTVs) as well as a high-data-rate Internet connection. In doing so we will examine the requirements of what this author considers to represent the home of the future. data. the home of the future will make use of a Voice-over-IP (VoIP) service. In this chapter we will probe that reasoning a bit further as well as expand on our examination of market drivers for different types of IPTV applications. Concerning the latter. As we describe and discuss different market drivers. and video services.
With more than a million telephone customers. Some RBOCs. such as Bell South and AT&T (formerly known as SBC Communications until SBC acquired AT&T). Cox Communications has signiﬁcantly eroded the customer base of RBOCs where it provides cable service. call forwarding. but the addition of call waiting. Georgia. and unlimited long distance within the United States increased the monthly cost to approximately $45. Overview The telephone company. 2.1 Telephone Company Landline Erosion In Chapter 1 we discussed several reasons why the telephone landline business is contracting. faces a series of competitive technologies that are eroding their “bread and butter” in the form of revenues they receive from landlines or wired telephone service. This in turn has resulted in consumers abandoning their second telephone line and. For other consumers. their primary landline because wireless cell phones and Internet access via cable television operators can be used to satisfy their data and voice communications requirements. or more accurately the Regional Bell Operating Company (RBOC). Competition from wireless cell phones and cable television Internet offerings has signiﬁcantly reduced the use of dial-up Internet access. In fact. Cox Communications.70 per month for basic telephone service. the ability to obtain telephone service via VoIP offerings from their cable television operator allows them to obtain their required communications services from a vendor other than their local telephone provider. which is the local cable television operator in Macon. in some cases. the RBOCs are not standing still nor are they letting the attack on their revenue stream occur without countermeasures.22 Understanding IPTV conversations are digitized at a data rate signiﬁcantly below the 64-kbps data rate used by conventional telephone services. In this section we will review those reasons as well as focus our attention on revenue retention measures telephone companies are conducting in the form of using technology to both minimize their revenue loss as well as enter the IPTV market. . Revenue Retention Measures Although the traditional telephone company landline business is under attack by wireless cell phone and cable television companies. beginning in January 2006. began offering telephone service to its customers at rates as low as $14.
1 standard. Figure 2. and television delivered via satellite. Under that standard. This is because one HDTV show or movie when compressed requires between 8 and 10 Mbps. Bell South was also offering potential customers up to $150 cash back if they signed up for two or more services. ADSL enables a maximum data rate of approximately 8 Mbps over twisted copper wire less than 14. Unfortunately. To sweeten the pot.000 feet in length.dmt by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and designated as the G. the RBOC uses copper-based Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Lines (ADSL) or veryhigh-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Lines (VDSL) to cover the “last mile” from the termination of the neighborhood ﬁber into the subscriber’s premises.1 illustrates the subdivision of the twisted wire telephone line by frequency to accommodate the transmission and reception of data . As the distance between the serving telephone company ofﬁce and the customer’s premises increases. the maximum achievable data rate signiﬁcantly decreases. are installing ﬁber-to-the-neighborhood (FTTN) or ﬁber-to-the-premises (FTTP) as the backbone infrastructure necessary to offer IPTV to their customers as well as provide a mechanism to take subscribers from cable television and satellite television operators. Thus.992.000 feet. operations at data rates up to 8 Mbps downstream to the subscriber and up to 768 kbps upstream to the telephone company are supported at distances up to 18.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 23 entered into agreements with satellite television operators and their cell phone afﬁliates to offer bundled discounts for telephone. which exceeds the capacity of ADSL at distances commonly encountered between a ﬁber hub and a subscriber’s premises. Because most homes have multiple televisions. conventional ADSL service does not provide a sufﬁcient data transmission rate at long distances to transport IPTV. Use of Fiber When FTTN is employed to route ﬁber into a neighborhood. In actuality. although it enables high-speed Internet access. reaching approximately 1. ADSL The original ADSL standard was referred to as G.5 Mbps at distances of approximately 18. customers who need to simultaneously view two or more HDTV channels or a single HDTV channel and an SDTV channel cannot obtain the necessary bandwidth through the use of ADSL. telephone companies using FTTN in their rollout of IPTV are using ADSL2+ to provide an enhanced capability into customer premises. such as Verizon and AT&T.000 feet. Other RBOCs. cell phone.
the downstream frequency band is signiﬁcantly larger than the upstream frequency band. Data bits are modulated using QAM on each subchannel. CAP results in the same form of signal as QAM. CAP was the de facto standard for ADSL use until the mid-1990s. it does not require in-phase and quadrature components of the carrier to ﬁrst be generated. however. with up to 15 bits per subchannel being encoded when transmission occurs over a good quantity line. Note that the voice channel of approximately 4 kHz is not affected by the data channels because the latter uses blocks of frequencies well beyond the 0 to 4 kHz of frequency used for voice. a double-sideband suppressed carrier signal is constructed from two multilevel pulse amplitude modulated (PAM) signals applied in phase quadrature to one another. and now represents the preferred modulation method. Under QAM. Modulation There are three modulation methods used by ADSL for encoding data onto the local loop: carrierless amplitude and phase (CAP).lite standard. Under DMT the upstream and downstream bands are subdivided into a sequence of smaller frequency ranges of approximately 4 kHz that are referred to as subchannels. under ADSL concurrent with voice communications. when DMT usage increased.24 Understanding IPTV Figure 2.1 ADSL frequency utilization. CAP modulation can be considered to represent a nonstandard version of quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM). Because DMT enables the transmission bandwidth to be divided into a sequence of subchannels that may or may not be used depending on the quality of the line. this . discr ete multitone (DMT). Also note that because the data rate is proportional to bandwidth. and a simpliﬁed DMT technology used by equipment adhering to the G.
992. This modulation method enables the achievement of higher data rates for extended distances when the signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio is low. Both the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and the ITU have speciﬁed DMT as the standard modulation method for full-rate ADSL and a modiﬁed version of DMT for G. ADSL2 The two versions of the ADSL2 standard.lite.lite and G. Framing Overhead Reduction A second feature of ADSL2 that facilitates a data rate and transmission distance improvement is a reduction of framing overhead.bis was approved as the G. 16-state trellis-coded and 1-bit QAM constellation is employed. ADSL2 was developed to improve the data transmission rate and transmission range of ADSL.lite.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 25 modulation technique allows the distinct characteristics of each line to have a maximum transmission rate. Fortunately. higher coding gain. G.4 standard.3 represents ADSL2 for full-rate ADSL. a reduction in framing overhead. respectively. RBOCs will have to upgrade customers using that technology as well as many ADSL lines if they want their subscribers to participate in the rollout of IPTV services.992.992. the original versions of ADSL .bis. This framing reduction is accomplished by providing a frame with a programmable number of overhead bits.992.2 standard and a revision to the standard referred to as G.992. This improvement is accomplished by an enhanced modulation efﬁciency. referred to as G. Because G. Enhanced Modulation Under ADSL2 a four-dimensional.lite.lite was approved by the ITU as the G.bis and G.4 represents the splitterless version of the more modern standard.dmt. and the use of enhanced signal processing algorithms. In comparison. Both ADSL2 standards were approved by the ITU in 2002 and supersede previously developed ADSL standards. were standardized by the ITU as G. whereas G. G.bis do not have the capacity to transport multiple video channels.992. most modern ADSL modems support CAP and several versions of DMT.4.lite. Concerning the latter.3 and G. which may facilitate the upgrading of customers. G.lite provides a maximum transmission rate of approximately 4 Mbps downstream and 512 kbps upstream.
extra or “redundant” bits are added to each block of digital data. which represents a block-based method of error correction. Coding Gain ADSL2 speciﬁes the use of Reed–Solomon coding for forward error correction. Under ADSL2. a Reed–Solomon decoder processes each block and attempts to correct errors and recover the original data in the block. Codewords A Reed–Solomon codeword is speciﬁed as RS(n. . At the receiver. Under Reed–Solomon coding. of which 223 represent data and 32 bytes represent redundant parity bits. In this example the codeword is referred to as a systematic code because the data is left unchanged while parity symbols are added. up to 28 kbps of additional bandwidth can be used for payload data. Figure 2. One popular example of a Reed–Solomon code is RS(255. This means that a Reed–Solomon encoder takes k data symbols of s bits each and adds parity symbols to make an n-symbol codeword.2 illustrates a typical Reed–Solomon codeword. where 2t = n – k.2 A Reed–Solomon codeword. Thus. which in turn improves the ﬂexibility and programmability in the construction of Reed–Solomon codewords. A Reed–Solomon decoder can correct up to t symbols that contain the errors in a codeword.26 Understanding IPTV used a ﬁxed number of overhead bits per frame that consumed 32 kbps of transmission. there are n – k parity symbols of s bits each. Figure 2. Because ADSL2 enables overhead bits to be programmed from 4 to 32 kbps.223) with 8-bit symbols. Here each codeword contains 255 bytes. a higher coding gain occurs from the use of Reed–Solomon coding due to improvements in the framing.k) with s-symbol bits.
223) Reed–Solomon code can be shortened to (200. In a Reed–Solomon coding environment. in effect. For example. The second method that can be used to enhance the bit error . Enhancing channel capacity. t = 16 In this example the Reed–Solomon decoder can correct any 16 symbol errors in the codeword. a (255. expressed in terms of 1-bit error in 10x bits transmitted. First.223) codeword. errors anywhere in the codeword that do not exceed 16 bytes in length. At the decoder. k = 223. One of the key properties of Reed–Solomon codes is that they can be conceptually shortened by setting a number of data symbols to 0 at the encoder. Thus. the maximum length of a code with 8-bit symbols (s = 8) becomes: n = 28 – 1 or 255 bytes Key properties. s = 8 2t = 32. add 55 zero bytes to create a (255. the ratio of the probability of an error occurring if Reed–Solomon coding is not used to the probability of an error not detected when Reed–Solomon coding is used is referred to as the coding gain. where the capacity of a channel (C) in bits per second (bps) is proportional to the bandwidth (W) in hertz and S/N ratio. Her e the Reed–Solomon encoder would operate on blocks of 168 data bytes.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 27 For this code: n = 255. but transmit only the 168 data bytes and 32 parity bytes. The maximum codeword length (n) for a Reed–Solomon code is n = 2s − 1 where s represents a given symbol size.168). and then reinserting them at the decoder . the bit error rate of a communications system. the signal strength of the transmitter can be increased. the 55 zero bytes would be added to the received data. which increases the S/N ratio. From Shannon’s Law. C = Wlog2 (1 + S/N) An increase in the S/N ratio will boost the capacity of the channel in bits per second. can be enhanced in two ways. Thus. skipping their transmission.
ADSL2+ represents a signiﬁcant improvement with respect to the transmission rate obtainable at distances of 5000 feet or less. Figure 2. which reduces both near-end echo and cross-talk levels and the determination by the receiver of the DMT carriers used to transmit initialization messages.28 Understanding IPTV rate is through the addition of Reed–Solomon coding or. ADSL2+ approximately doubles the bandwidth used to transport data.2 MHz under ADSL2+. This increased gain occurs due to improvements in the ADSL2 frames that enhance the construction of Reed–Solomon codewords. Returning to our discussion of ADSL2. Other Improvements In addition to the previously mentioned improvements of enhanced modulation efﬁciency.3 illustrates ADSL2+ frequency utilization. with the downstream frequency band extended from 1. Doubling the available bandwidth while . its coding gain. which avoids channel nulls from bridged taps as well as narrow-band interference from AM radio and improvements in the determination of training signals. and higher Reed–Solomon coding gain. Frequency Utilization To obtain a higher data transmission rate. on long lines where data rates are lower. ADSL2 obtains higher coding gain fr om the use of Reed–Solomon coding. As a result of the additional improvements and features added to ADSL2. reduced framing overhead. Some of those additional improvements include power reduction capabilities at each end of the telephone line. more speciﬁcally. such systems can provide a 50-kbps increase in data rate and approximate 600-foot transmission extension in comparison to ADSL. Comparison to ADSL2 Previously we noted that under Shannon’s Law the data rate obtainable on a channel is proportional to available bandwidth and the signal-tonoise ratio on the channel.1 MHz under ADSL and ADSL2 to 2. ADSL2+ Whereas ADSL2 represents a small improvement over ADSL. ADSL2 provides many additional improvements over ADSL that result in an increased data rate being obtained by ADSL2 systems.
0 25.000 3. with the increase in the downstream data rate of ADSL2+ decreasing as the length of the local loop incr eases.000 6.5 12. this option may not be important for most ADSL2+ subscribers.5 6.000 8.000 12.5 9.2 MHz.000 10.3 ADSL2+ frequency utilization.0 10. ADSL2+ includes an optional operational mode that can be used to double upstream bandwidth. holding the S/N ratio constant results in the obtainable data rate on the downstream channel of approximately double on the local loop at distances up to 3000 feet.1 provides an approximate comparison of the maximum obtainable data rate of ADSL2 and ADSL2+ with respect to the length of the local loop.5 12.5 12.0 15.0 .5 7.000 5. In addition to increasing the downstream frequency band to 2.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 29 Figure 2. However.5 12.5 12.5 7.0 9.000 7.0 26. because Web surﬁng and the use of IPTV results in relatively small upstream queries followed by larger delivery of downstream data.000 9.5 20. Table 2.5 24.5 6.000 2.1 Comparing ADSL2 and ADSL2+ Maximum Data Rates (Mbps) Downstream Local Loop Distance (ft) ADSL2 ADSL2+ 1. Table 2.0 26.5 11.000 4.
the future home with four televisions. the simultaneous transmission of two HDTV signals would require between 16 and 20 Mbps of bandwidth.30 Understanding IPTV FTTN and ADSL In concluding our discussion of the different versions of ADSL. Thus. SDTV. . In comparison. the use of two SDTVs would require between 2 and 4 Mbps. it is important to note that the price of both plasma and LCD TVs are rapidly dropping. would require between 18 and 24 Mbps of bandwidth. Similarly. Because compressed HDTV can currently be transported at a data rate between 8 and 10 Mbps. Within a few years the price of a 32-inch high-deﬁnition LCD TV may be under $400. Although readers may question the number of HDTVs in a typical home of the future due to their current cost. Figure 2. the total bandwidth required to support the home of the future can be expected to be between 20 and 28 Mbps. we will examine why telephone companies will need to support ADSL2+ if they intend to provide IPTV services via FTTN. and digitized voice requires signiﬁcantly less bandwidth than the 64 kbps required by a conventional landline telephone system. In examining Figure 2. of which two will be high deﬁnition.4 IPTV bandwidth requirements. Thus. Figure 2. which would result in a mass market for this type of ﬂat-panel television.4 illustrates the approximate bandwidth capacity required to deliver HDTV. high-speed data (HSD) between 2 and 4 Mbps should be more than sufﬁcient for Webbased activities.4. note that the typical home of the future will probably have four televisions. assuming all four televisions were in use simultaneously. of which two are HD and two are SD. and digitized voice into a typical home.
all active components between a telephone company central ofﬁce and the customer premises are eliminated when a PON is employed. their use is practical only if the subscriber does not require the ability to view HDTV in real-time. multiplexers. Through the replacement of active components by passive devices. processors. it wasn’t until 1987 that early ﬁeld trials in the use of the technology occurred.1. for FTTN to be successful. Such devices have neither power nor processing requirements. and in 1999 Bell South completed its beta testing of PON architecture to 400 homes in the Atlanta area. Because ADSL and ADSL2 support lower data rates. note that ADSL2+ can support a data rate at or above 20 Mbps at distances up to 5000 feet. the service provider eliminates the need to power and service active components in the transmission loop. This in turn reduces the service provider’s cost of operations. PON technology has rapidly increased in use and provides a reasonable-cost method for RBOCs to create the backbone infrastructure necessary to deploy FTTN or ﬁber-to-the-curb (FTTC).Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 31 From Table 2. Overview Today most telecommunications networks are constructed using active components. As a result. such as routers. and other devices that are active and process information. In 1993 Deutsche Telekom began the installation of PON architecture on a massive scale in Eastern Germany. In comparison. Thus. the mean time between failures (MTBF) of a PON is . Based on the success of numerous ﬁeld trials around the globe. Employment of a PON results in the installation of passive optical components that guide communications trafﬁc based on splitting the power of optical wavelengths to endpoints along the route. Passive Optical Network Although the passive optical network (PON) was invented at British Telecom laboratories in 1982. Such components operate by consuming power and normally consist of memory. In this section we turn our attention to PON to obtain an understanding of how the technology operates. the ﬁber terminal point within a neighborhood needs to be positioned such that the maximum local loop into a potential subscriber’s premises is less than or equal to 5000 feet. and line drivers. Equipment The backbone of a PON is couplers and splitters that passively restrict or pass light.
and a set of associated optical network terminations (ONTs) and optical network units (ONUs) are installed at locations where optical ﬁber terminates at the neighborhood (FTTN) or at a building (FTTB). which consists of ﬁber.5 illustrates the potential use of a PON to interconnect a telephone company central ofﬁce and subscriber premises by providing a backbone to neighborhoods where ADSL2. where the light signal ﬂows until it reaches an applicable ONU or ONT.5. turning our attention to Figure 2. and couplers. enabling ﬁber’s large data transmission capacity to be routed directly to National hub Regional hub Regional hub Local hub Local hub Local hub Local hub To subscribers Figure 2. ADSL2+. ONTs are used when the ﬁber extends into the customer premises.32 Understanding IPTV virtually unlimited.5 Using a passive optical network as a backbone linking ADSL2 connections. The OLT either generates light signals on its own or receives SONET (synchronous optical network) signals. . or VDSL can be used to provide short-distance but high-speed transmission over existing copper into subscriber homes and ofﬁces. such as an OC-12. a single ﬁber can be split several times. Thus. Figure 2. The OLT then broadcasts trafﬁc through one or more outbound ports. which further lowers the operating cost of this type of network. note that the ONTs are shown when ﬁber is routed into a building (FTTB) whereas ONUs are employed when ﬁber is routed to a neighborhood (FTTN). Between the two ﬁber endpoints is the optical distribution network (ODN). passive splitters. As illustrated in Figure 2. whereas ONUs are used when ﬁber terminates outside the customer facility. which then converts the optical signal into an electrical signal. from a colocated SONET crossconnect.5. At the central ofﬁce an optical line terminator (OLT) is installed.
Although in general the technology remains the same. The main ﬁber run on a PON can occur at 155 Mbps. In a PON upstream direction. a version of ADSL or VDSL is used to enable high-speed communications over existing metallic wiring into the subscriber’s premises. when data is transmitted toward the customer premises. this ensures that transmissions from different ONTs do not collide.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 33 buildings where multiple ofﬁces and apartments are located as well as into neighborhoods. 1. Operation The transmission of data between the central ofﬁce and customer premises differs from the manner by which data ﬂows from the customer premises to the central ofﬁce. In comparison. .2 lists four common types of PONs. Thus. 622 Mbps. the use of different upper layer protocols results in the use of different physical layers. PON represents a strong complement to ADSL and VDSL that can be used within buildings or within a neighborhood. Types of PONs Today communications carriers employ several types of PONs. In the downstream direction. the PON backbone is shared among many customers. the ability to use existing metallic wiring instead of providing individual ﬁber connections to subscribers further reduces the cost associated with establishing a PON. Because the time slots are synchronized. Table 2. a PON that delivers 622 Mbps downstream to users might provide a 155-Mbps upstream capacity. This is because transmission of each ONT to the OL T needs to be coordinated to avoid the occurrence of collisions. For example. it is broadcast from the OLT to each ONT. lowering the overall cost of deploying the optical network. with each ONT processing the data destined to it by matching the address located in the protocol header. In addition. data is transmitted using a time division multiple access (TDMA) protocol.5 Gbps. The end result is that the transmission rates obtainable on different types of PONs can vary considerably. with the key difference among types being the upper layer pr otocols used. At each terminal’s location by or in a building or neighborhood. or 2. Because movies and Web surﬁng involve relatively small user upstream requests that are followed by large downstream transmissions. Due to the need to synchronize upstream transmissions. PONs normally represent an asymmetrical transmission method.25 Gbps. upstream transmission is a bit more complicated due to the shared media functionality of the ODN. where dedicated transmission slots are assigned to each ONT.
. Because that term could be misleading (that only ATM services could be provided to end users).” The extensions to Ethernet’s physical layers included optical ﬁ ber and unshielded twisted-pair (UTP) copper cable used for point-to-point connections. These extensions were developed to enable the use of Ethernet for subscriber access networks. Data rates up to 620 Mbps symmetrical and 1240/622 asymmetrical have been standardized by the ITU in the G983.34 Understanding IPTV Table 2. For both APON and ATM used by BPON a 53-byte ATM cell is used to transport data. such as an Internet service provider’s premises.2 Common Types of Passive Optical Networks ATM PON (APON) Broadband PON (BPON) Ethernet PON (EPON) Gigabit PON (GPON) APON An ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode)-based PON operates similarly to an ATM network.x series of standards. That is. BPON The initial PON speciﬁcation used ATM as its signaling protocol.3 Media Access Control (MAC) and MAC sublayers with a family of physical (PHY) layers. and Gigabit Ethernet. A number of VCs are bundled into a virtual path (VP) for faster switching through the carrier’s network. EPON is based on the use of the Multi-Point Control Protocol (MPCP). the Full Service Access Network (FSAN) group decided to broaden the name to Broadband PON (BPON). which is referred to by the phrase “Ethernet in the ﬁrst mile (EFM). which represents a new function deﬁned within the MAC sublayer. EPON Ethernet-based PONs (EPONs) evolved from the set of extensions developed by the IEEE for its 802. Ethernet. resulting in the term APON being used to reference this type of network. This name can reference the use of ATM. subscribers establish virtual circuits (VCs) across the APON to a speciﬁc destination. resulting in EFM providing support for EPONs in which a pointto-multipoint network topology is implemented through the use of passive optical splitters and couplers.
TDM.984. messages and timers are used to control access to the point-to-multipoint networks. Although GPON is not backward compatible with BPON because its goals to operate at higher data rates required a modiﬁed physical layer.5 Gbps downstream and 1. GPON The fourth type of PON is based on the use of high-speed Ethernet. the GPON system standardized as G. referred to as Gigabit Ethernet. music videos. GPON provides support for Ethernet 10 Mbps and 100 Mbps.3 standard.1 through G. resulting in the term GPON being used to reference this network access method.25 Gbps symmetrically as well as 2. which was ratiﬁed during 2003 and 2004. Overview The pay-TV market has evolved from cable television and satellite TV providers to a variety of businesses that offer television shows and movies over the Internet. EPON was standardized by the IEEE as the 802. Although revenues from cable television and satellite TV providers were greater than $50 billion in 2005.984. a profound market shift is based on the following four factors: The substitution of broadband access for dial-up service The introduction of the video iPod and similar products The availability of TV shows for sale by major television networks The growth in the number of Internet sites offering the sale and rental of movies. 2. ATM. whereas the rentals and sales of movies and television shows over the Internet are currently less than $50 million.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 35 Under MPCP.25 Gbps upstream. and SONET connectivity.2 The Pay-TV Market A second market driver for IPTV is the pay-TV market. GPON provides support for data rates of 622 Mbps and 1. In this section we will discuss both the conventional pay-TV market as well as evolving competition for consumer funds and the effect of this driver on the emerging IPTV infrastructure. and television shows .4 uses the work of BPON to develop this new standard.
such as directly onto a video iPod or by creating a DVD that can be viewed on their television using a DVD player or while traveling by using a portable DVD player. for example. or approximately 46. either for direct viewing on their computer or for transfer to another device. music videos.175 GB of data to be received. this activity would require: 1. which can be used for Web surﬁng but is still impractical for downloading full-length videos in a timely manner. At a download data rate of 56 kbps. . television shows.6 hours! This relatively long time to download a onehour video via dial-up explains why dial-up Internet access makes it almost impossible to download anything but relatively short video clips. DSL Offerings In comparison to dial-up. Downloading a one-hour television show or relatively short movie could require 1. Cable Modem Offerings Cable modem subscribers more often than not are offered a low-speed data rate similar to those provided to DSL subscribers for competitive purposes. a key difference between DSL and cable modem rates is in their high-speed offerings. Most cable modem high-speed offerings begin at data rates where DSL offerings stop. Dial-Up Delays Until broadband transmission became commonly available at a relatively low monthly cost. consumers were restricted to using dial-up. This in turn has created a growing market of consumers who download movies. and videos of special events. However.36 Understanding IPTV Broadband Access The substitution of broadband for dial-up Internet access resulted in millions of subscribers being able to download large data ﬁles within a reasonable period of time. with. where the maximum data rate was 56 kbps.175 Gbytes × 8 bits/byte = 167. DSL subscribers can select from a variety of offerings ranging from a slow service at 256 kbps.857 seconds The above computed download time is equivalent to 2797 minutes. to faster services that can provide data rates as high as 20 Mbps at distances up to approximately 5000 feet from a central ofﬁce or ﬁber termination point.
whereas at a data rate of 8192 kbps only approximately a third of an hour is required.32 0.08 .384 kbps 32.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 37 Cablevision announcing during November 2005 that it was increasing the maximum download speed to 15 Mbps from 10 Mbps. the download time is reduced to slightly more than a half hour.3. it is obvious that the higher data rates provided by broadband communications signiﬁcantly lower the time required to download a video. both are reasonable time periods. the growth in the number of people subscribing to broadband Internet access increases the potential of those subscribers to download different types of video for viewing on their PC or on another device. Verizon.27 0. and other regional phone companies resulted in an increase in DSL data rates as the copper “last mile” is either shortened by FTTN or replaced by the routing of ﬁber to the premises. Thus.3 Download Time for One-Hour Video Data Rate Hours Required 56 kbps 256 kbps 1024 kbps 2048 kbps 4096 kbps 8192 kbps 16.16 2.768 kbps 46.64 10. This action has resulted in some locations now being offered DSL download speeds from 5 to 30 Mbps.16 0. Download Time Comparison The rollout of IPTV services by AT&T (formerly known as SBC Communications). Download times are shown in terms of the approximate number of hours required to download the one-hour video at each data rate. Note that at a data rate of 4096 kbps which is representative of high-speed DSL and medium-speed cable modem services. In examining the entries in Table 2. which was already higher than most DSL offerings.54 1. especially when compared to almost 46 hours when downloading occurs via dial-up.64 0. For many consumers. Table 2.3 compares the time required to download a onehour video at a 56-kbps dial-up rate to seven popular DSL and cable modem rates. Table 2.
10-. it is just one of many types of portable video products to reach the market. whereas viewing video at a different location is referred to as video-shifting or view-shifting. If you travel by train or airplane. This technique of viewing previously recorded video at a different time is referred to as time-shifting. then NBC and CBS announced deals with cable and satellite providers in November 2005 that would commence operation at the beginning of 2006. Although the shows would include commercials. CBS Shows Under the deal between Comcast and CBS. Availability of TV Shows A third factor that is facilitating a market shift away from conventional pay TV is the signiﬁcant increase in the availability of TV shows. Although the majority of people currently using portable DVD players view purchased or rented DVDs. Currently. customers of the cable television ﬁrm with digital service would be able to purchase episodes of four primetime shows beginning in January 2006 starting a few hours after the shows aired on the network. the majority of portable video players are DVD devices with 5-. or 11-inch displays. cable and satellite providers would be able to watch popular shows anytime after those shows were aired. chances are high that you will see several people in the railway car or the airplane cabin watching a video using a portable video player. 7-. Under the deals struck with CBS and NBC. for the foreseeable future they will more than likely represent the preferred method for viewing videos in a mobile environment. the ability to download many types of video via the Internet as well as to use a digital video recorder (DVR) to create DVDs for later viewing can be expected to alter the use of players. The announced deals allow viewers to order episodes of such primetime shows as Law & Order: Special Victims Unit and Survivor for 99 cents apiece. First there was Apple Computer’s agreement with ABC in October 2005 to make several television programs available for downloading via the Internet. .38 Understanding IPTV Introduction of Video Products Although the introduction of the Apple Computer video iPod in October 2005 received considerable press attention. viewers would be able to fast-forward through them. Because portable DVD players have a larger screen than the Apple Computer video iPod and a virtually unlimited storage capacity because multiple DVDs are easily packed and do not take up much storage space.
vintage television shows made by Warner Brothers. most of which represent free content. Whereas DirecTV’s offering is not a conventional on-demand offering. video delivery will occur via video feeds. the fact that the Warner Brothers offerings cannot be time-shifted or place-shifted leaves questions about its viability. NBC agreed with Direct TV to make a series of programs available. the AOL–Warner Brothers service will include 15-second commercials that viewers cannot bypass.” this service was scheduled to commence in January 2006 with six channels providing shows ranging from comedy to drama. Kotter. I would be remiss if I did not mention an agreement between AOL and Warner Brothers that was announced in mid-November 2005. and USA. Under the announced agreement by these two divisions of Time Warner Inc. NBC is making available commercial-free shows. how many people will want to watch an entire TV show on their PC screen. The other disk space in the recorder will be used to store approximately ﬁve hours per week of NBC primetime television shows as well as other programming transmitted by DirecTV. Customers can then purchase and view the stored programs. That is. The DirecTV VOD service will be available to subscribers who obtain a new set-top box and have a TiVo set-top DVR. . which will prevent viewers from recording shows. will be offered free online by AOL. Because Comcast’s infrastructure includes many on-demand channels. such as Sci-Fi. In addition. but only 100 hours will be available for consumers to use. including some that air on its cable channels. the AOL–Warner Brothers agreement at a minimum will increase the availability of TV shows on the Internet.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 39 NBC Shows In a separate agreement that was announced at the same time. Bravo. Unlike CBS. AOL and Warner Brothers In concluding our discussion of the availability of TV shows. although their offerings pale in comparison to the potential of virtually unlimited offerings that can be expected to be provided by IPTV systems. Although it is difﬁcult to compete with a free product. and will decades-old fare be a draw? Although such questions may take awhile to be answered. such as real estate listings. and Kung Fu. The recorder will have 160 hours of recording capacity. with each show being billed at 99 cents. its subscribers have more ﬂexibility than the subscribers to DirecTV. Comcast is providing a more ﬂexible strategy by adding TV shows to its library of 3800 on-demand offerings.. Referred to as “In2TV. Although it will be free to view the programs. such as Welcome Back. Wonder Woman.
it’s quite possible that hundreds of small-screen TV channels could become available. because each IP datacast-ready cell phone would have a unique IP address. In fact. it becomes possible for cell phone users to select a particular program that they could view on an “on-demand” channel. a single voice mailbox would be available for both the cellular and the wired phone. many movies that made . the amount of content available for watching on certain types of cell phones would signiﬁcantly increase. and customers would be able to watch shows stored on their home DVRs as well as program their home recorders via their cell phones. the availability of videos on the Internet was more than likely from “hacker” Web sites that provided free copies of movies prior to the release of the movie on DVD. This reduction in the required data rate permits approximately 30 smallscreen TV channels to be broadcast over the bandwidth now used to broadcast a single analog channel. Although it is still premature to discuss the fees that will be associated with cell phone television. and high-speed Internet access. that lets the cable companies sell Sprint wireless services along with their own TV. In addition. With IP datacast. including Comcast. the majority of television viewed on cell phones will be broadcast TV. phone. Because analog transmission will be phased out over the next few years. the quantity of data transmitted to represent a TV channel is reduced to between 128 and 384 kbps because the screen on which the video will be observed is smaller than a regular television.40 Understanding IPTV Cell Phone Television Another area of pay television that is emerging as a market driver for IPTV is cell phone television. and Time Warner. subscribers can expect to pay between $99 and $250 for an applicable cell phone and approximately $15 per month for the ability to view television on the “small screen. Growth in Internet Video Content Just a few years ago.” IP Datacast Initially. Cox Communications. However. in the future we can expect a combination of digital broadcast and the IP to provide a new broadcast technology referred to as IP datacast over DVB-H (digital video broadcast — handheld). In November 2005 Sprint Nextel Corporation announced a deal with several of the largest cable television companies. resulting in the development of another screen version of wireless IPTV. which for simplicity is referred to as IP datacast. Under this deal.
such as an Apple video iPod. providing tens of thousands of music videos. such as a home computer. and video can be stored on a common device. movies. which resulted in some rather interesting movements when the person making the bootleg copy had an itch to scratch. and other content providers. Although the technology used for each submarket differs. TV networks. Because traditional telephone companies are investing billions of dollars in IPTV. data. 2. and video. Because each can be represented in digital format. Because AT&T (previously known as SBC Communications) and Verizon also operate cell phone service. and Video Another key market driver for IPTV is the convergence of voice. with the latter term adding fax to . voice. most have a similar capability in that they allow a subscriber to time-shift a video to a more convenient time. Voice Until a few years ago the primary buzz when discussing convergence was VoIP. a television set-top box. also referred to as IP telephony.3 Convergence of Voice. or another addressable device. and television shows. Data. The growth in Internet video content enables diverse subscriber viewing habits to be accommodated and provides the developers of IPTV with a potential revenue stream once the infrastructure is developed to enable rapid downloads of content as well as negotiate the availability of content from movie studios. one can expect the various types of pay TV mentioned in this section to represent benchmarks for IPTV delivery. including video on demand and TV shows delivered to cell phones. Summary The pay-TV market consists of a series of submarkets. Today the number of pay-video sites offering legitimate ﬁrst-rate movies has signiﬁcantly expanded. Thus. to be successful they must be competitive. it is both possible and easy to transmit voice.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 41 their way to the Web were the result of a person visiting a movie theater with a hand-held digital camcorder. In this section we will note how each individual data stream can be transported within a common IP data stream. it is reasonable to expect their IPTV delivery to eventually provide a mechanism by which subscribers can download video into their homes as well as onto their cell phones. data. At their destination. data. or they can be delivered to a destination deﬁned by an IP address. and video over a common network infrastructure.
expressed in milliseconds (ms).723.4 Popular Voice Coding Standards Standard Description Data Rate (kbps) Delay (ms) MOS* G.4. . In examining the entries in Table 2. representing a subjective scale from 1 (bad) to 5 (excellent) of the perceived clarity of a conversation.723.728 G. and MOS. 24.98 4. 6. The codec delay time is extremely important because it is one of several delays that cumulatively need to be less than 150 ms to obtain a high MOS. ** LD-CELP variation.5 10. their digital data rate.12 5 37.4.3. When digitized voice is transmitted over an IP network an analog conversation is digitized through the use of a voice coder into a digital data stream.12 5 0. as the data rate required to transport a digitized voice conversation decreases. note that PCM and ADPCM are used primarily by RBOCs when calls ﬂow through their legacy switches.726 G. The coder converts voice at a speciﬁc data rate based on the type of coder employed.1 Pulse code modulation (PCM) Adaptive differential PCM (ADPCM) Algebraic codebook excited linear predictor (ACELP) Low-delay codebook excited linear predictors (LD-CELP) Conjugate-structured algebraic CELP (CS-ACELP) Multipulse maximum likelihood quantizer (MP-MLQ)** 64 16.1 G. The other voice digitization standards are used primarily in a VoIP environment because they signiﬁcantly reduce the data transport needed to convey a voice conversation.2 4.2 3. Table 2. As you might surmise from examining the entries in Table 2.0 30.5 * Mean opinion score. and a mean opinion score (MOS).3 16 8 5. Other delays include the egress and ingress data links and the delay time packets experience ﬂowing through a network. and the quality of the conversation in terms of its MOS degrades.8 4. its delay increases.0 4.3 0.729 G. Associated with the use of each coder is a delay time. digitized voice as being capable of being transmitted over a public or private IP data network. 32 5.2 3. delay.4 lists six voice coding standards.711 G.5 2.42 Understanding IPTV Table 2.
and video) from one vendor. the troika of services does not ﬂow over a common IP network. Internet access [data]. video must be delivered with minimum delay so that frames are not distorted in time.” Data Both RBOCs and cable television operators offer subscribers various Internet access offerings. being distinguished from one another by the header in each packet that will indicate the type of data carried. . and data to their customers over a common IP network. when a video is downloaded. data.4 is only a portion of the end-to-end delay that can adversely affect VoIP. AT&T and Verizon are rapidly constructing a large ﬁber-based backbone to provide the capability to deliver voice. Because RBOCs provide this service over their existing last mile line and cable television operators provide a similar capability within their coaxial cable routed into homes. Today cable television operators are providing a VoIP service to entice subscribers to obtain a troika of services (voice. when viewing a real-time video stream. voice. To ensure high-quality voice communications requires both sufﬁcient bandwidth to minimize transmission delays as well as routers within the network that can prioritize voice trafﬁc. In comparison.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 43 The delay listed in Table 2. However. and video will share a common bandwidth. true convergence will occur in an IPTV environment. which enables routers to reduce delay by giving voice trafﬁc a higher priority than data. Video The convergence of video onto the same pipe with voice and data is similar to the delivery of voice under certain situations and data under other conditions. although voice. ranging in monthly price and data rate from a minimal monthly cost at a data rate ﬁve times dial-up to more costly and higher data rate offerings. In comparison. This is broadly referred to as quality of service (QoS). the ability to provide convergence can be summed up as “bandwidth. where data. This means that real-time video packets must be tagged to enable routers to prioritize the content of such packets. and video ﬂow over a common coaxial cable. we can say that technically data is physically converged on the same “pipe” into homes. That is. Whereas the driving force behind real estate pricing is location. However. with the latter requiring such trafﬁc to be tagged to indicate its need for prioritization. video. delay between frames is not an issue because once the video is downloaded it will then be viewed from disk.
Figure 2. so will the probability of a customer ordering a pay-per-view video or subscribing to the service due to the content matching the subscriber’s preference. As their digital library expands. This facility would receive national and local content from a regional hub. The national hub would encode and compress video as well as serve as a central repository for VOD content. regional.4 Evolution of Video Compression In concluding this chapter we will brieﬂy discuss the key technology that enables IPTV to be a reality. the local hub would insert more localized advertisements as well as transmit content directly to the subscriber. Regional Hubs Regional hubs would receive national content from the national hub as well as connect to and receive local content and insert local advertisements. National Hub At the national level a central bank of servers connected to terrestrial and satellite feeds would provide national video content. With the ability of IPTV to provide a virtually unlimited number of shows. Video Distribution Network The ability to deliver requested content will require the development of a video distribution network. In addition. 2.6 illustrates the video distribution network hierarchy described. That technology is video compression. and local level. providers must license applicable material. Local Hub The lowest level in the video distribution network would be the local hub.44 Understanding IPTV A second constraint concerning the convergence of video is not technical but concerns content availability. such as new pay-per-view movies. the regional hub would temporarily store popular movies and other content. In addition to facilitating delivery of VOD content. That network will consist of a three-tier series of hubs at the national. .
which is insufﬁcient for video. two professors who worked at the Technion. in which repeating strings of the same character are replaced by a trio of characters that indicate compression has occurred. most data compression techniques were developed to operate on text data. The problem with these techniques is the fact that their typical compression ratio is between 2:1 and 3:1. Lossless vs. That is. Overview Prior to the development of digital video. One common text-based data compression technique is run-length encoding. Israel’s equivalent of MIT. In comparison. the character that was compressed. compressed data can be decompressed into its original data stream. A second popular text-based data compression technique is actually a series of string-based techniques based on the work of Lempel and Ziv. and the number of characters that were compressed. Lossy The two previously mentioned text-based compression techniques are referred to as lossless compression.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 45 ONU FTTN ONT FTTB Telephone central oﬃce ADSL2+ OLT ONU FTTN ADSL2+ ONT FTTB Legend: OLT: Optical line termination ONU: Optical network unit ONT: Optical network terminal FTTN: Fiber to the neighborhood FTTB: Fiber to the building Figure 2. lossy compression was .6 Video distribution network hierarchy.
492. lossy compression is not fully reversible. whereas one of several HDTV standards requires 1920 × 1080 pixels. Thus. a technique referred to as true color. Thus. Examples of lossy compression techniques include Joint Photography Experts Group (JPEG) for still photos and the Motion Picture Experts Group (MPEG) series of compression techniques used for digital video. A high-quality image would use 3 bytes (or 24 bits) per pixel to represent color. at a frame rate of 30 frames per second (fps). The width and height of each digital video image comparable to analog television is 640 × 480 for SDTV.000 bps The preceding computations for SDTV and HDTV makes it obvious that the ability of an RBOC or another service provider to enable subscribers to access multiple television channels over a common access line is severely limited without the use of a lossy compression method.000 bps For HDTV. and different frame rates are used for different types of digital video applications. each of which is a two-dimensional frame made up of picture elements (pels) or pixels. 3 bytes (or 24 bits) are required for HDTV. This is because the use of copper-based ADSL2+ is limited to allowing a data . the noncompressed data rate becomes 30 × 1920 × 1080 × 24 or 1. where luminance represents a pixel’s intensity and chrominance represents the color of the pixel.456.97) and European television’s frame rate is 25. North American television has a frame rate of approximately 30 (29. whereas 2 bytes (or 16 bits) can be used for SDTV color depth. Compression Requirements We can think of digital video as representing a sequence of images. Here the images are referred to as frames. Whereas movies use a frame rate of 24. This makes lossy compression more suitable for compressing digital video.992. We can think of digital video as a sequence of images displayed to convey the illusion of motion. Each pixel has a luminance and chrominance value. Because blocks of pixels are compared to one another and assumed to be equal even when they differ by a few pixels. the noncompressed data rate for SDTV becomes 30 × 640 × 480 × 16 or 147. lossy compression has a signiﬁcantly higher compression ratio than lossless compression.46 Understanding IPTV initially developed to reduce the storage and transmission requirements of pictures under which blocks of pixels are compared and assumed to be equivalent even if they differ by a few pixels. In addition.
In the next chapter we will examine compression in much more detail.Market Drivers and Developing IPTV Infrastructure 47 rate of approximately 25 Mbps at distances up to 5000 feet. The purpose of this section was to brieﬂy examine the evolution of compression and the rationale for the use of lossy compression for delivering digital video. we can note that advances in the development of different data compression techniques made it possible for the transmission of video to the desktop and into subscribers’ homes in the form of IPTV. . For now. whereas the use of PON enables a bandwidth of approximately 30 Mbps into the subscriber’s premises.
3. As we examine basic television concepts we will become familiar with a variety of terms associated with the technology. frames. In this chapter we turn our attention to obtaining an understanding of television concepts. the next chapter will focus on the IP.1 are also applicable to a digital television system. Figure 3.1 Analog Television The original development of television was based on analog technology. receivers would translate the received formatted signal and present the results on the television’s display. and interlacing and how they affect bandwidth. Thus.and high-deﬁnition television. 49 . In actuality. By obtaining an appreciation for the bandwidth requirements of standard. including pixels. when we replace an analog video camera with a digital camera and use digital formatting. we will note the need for lossy compression. First we will reacquaint ourselves with analog television concepts and the evolution from analog to digital television.1 illustrates the major components of an analog video television system. Television shows were created using an analog video camera to create a video signal that was then formatted and transmitted via a broadcasting station. the components shown in Figure 3. In the home analog television. in concluding this chapter we will examine several data compression techniques whose use enables IPTV to become a reality.Chapter 3 Television Concepts An understanding of IPTV depends on knowledge of basic television concepts and the Internet Protocol (IP) used to transport television as a sequence of packetized frames.
Canada. Russia 4. In the United States. Japan. Japan. Mexico Great Britain Austria.0 . and ex-French colonies. Two additional analog color systems are used in many countries: PAL and SECAM. Note that the Table 3. and Mexico analog television is formatted based on standards developed by the National Television Systems Committee (NTSC). The Séquentiel Couleur à Mémoire (SECAM) standard was developed in France and is used primarily in that country. two FM subcarriers are used to transmit a color-difference component. Italy France. and green (RBG) primary colors and a luminance signal such that they are transmitted at certain frequencies. Germany. instead of using a high-frequency subcarrier according to the NTSC standards.0 5. Canada.1 represents a standardized method of taking analog camera signals represented by red. The Phase Alternating Line (PAL) standard is similar to NTSC but uses a subcarrier alteration technique that results in certain types of transmission errors appearing as if they have canceled each other out. blue.2 5.1 compares the bandwidth requirements of the three previously mentioned analog color television systems in megahertz.50 Understanding IPTV Figure 3.1 Major components of an analog television system.5 6.1 Analog Color TV System Bandwidth System Country Bandwidth (MHz) NTSC PAL PAL SECAM United States. PAL is used in most of Europe but not in France and Russia. Table 3. Under SECAM. Russia. Signal Formatting The signal formatting shown in Figure 3.
are derived from the primary color components. Scanning Scanning represents the process of converting optical images into electrical signals and is used by all types of video systems.Television Concepts 51 table contains two entries for PAL. the amplitudes of each signal are proportional to the spectral energy in the scene being viewed. The term “interlaced” refers to the fact that the screen is ﬁrst scanned on all evennumbered lines. At the end of the image the sensing spot snaps back to begin a new line. referred to as I and Q signals. and blue visual components of the scene being viewed. Federal Communications Commission (FCC) in July 1953. A complete scan of the image area is referred to as a frame. Five months later this analog broadcasting system was approved for use. The later signal components. because different systems require slight differences in bandwidth. As the sensing spot begins a new line. scanning occurs in a television camera via the movement of an electronic sensing spot across the image from left to right horizontally to form a scanning line. This means that the picture is created by scanning across the screen horizontally from left to right with 480 lines. As we probe further into analog television we will primarily reference the NTSC system. NTSC Operation The color broadcasting scheme standard developed by the NTSC was proposed to the U. Under this system a video camera generates three primary signals referred to as ER. it does so slightly below the previous line until it reaches the end of the last scanned line. this is referred to as retracing. 480 interlaced lines are used to create a picture.S. and EB. using it as a basis for comparison. then a vertical synchronization pulse returns the electron . At this point the sensing image performs both horizontal and vertical retrace operations. a luminance signal based on the relative sensitivity of the human eye to the primary colors is generated as well as two chrominance signal components. which results in the sensing spot returning to its original position in the upper left portion of the screen. Under the NTSC system. green. The sensing spot converts each image point it sees into an electrical voltage.2 illustrates the scanning process. EG. Because camera signals at that time were analog. Under the NTSC television system. Figure 3. These primary signals are the electrical analog values of the red. In addition to the three primary signals.
Figure 3.2 The scanning process.
beam to the top of the picture tube, after which all odd-numbered lines are scanned. The vertical synchronization pulse can be viewed as an inter-frame timing gap equal to about the time required to scan 45 lines. During this timing gap the television that will display the transmitted image has time to receive the next frame; however, no picture information occurs. Instead, this time gap is used to transmit control information, such as closedcaption data. Thus, the total number of lines in each video frame can be thought of as being 525, but only 480 contain active video information that is displayed. Sometimes this standard analog TV format is referred to as 525i, which means 525 interlaced lines. However, because only 480 lines are displayed, another common term used is 480i. Each scan of even and odd lines occurs in one-sixtieth of a second, resulting in one full picture being displayed every one-thirtieth of a second. Thus, the frame rate is 30 frames per second (fps), whereas in a movie theater a slightly different rate of 24 fps is used. As previously noted, the 525 lines speciﬁed by the NTSC television format actually result in 480 lines of resolution. This is because during the timing gap interval equivalent to 45 lines, 22 lines ar e used for transmitting test signals, vertical synchronization of the picture, closed captioning, and program guides, and a few additional lines are used for the mask of the picture. The term 480i, which is used to reference 480 lines of interlaced scanning, represents what is referred to as analog standarddeﬁnition television (SDTV). Standard analog television has been in use for approximately 55 years, during which time it has provided a reasonably good-quality picture.
However, to obtain a good-quality picture, a television set must be relatively small. As television sets reached the market with 30-, 32-, 40-, 42-, and even 50-inch diagonally measur ed screens, the scan lines used in analog television have become mor e visible. Although one solution to the image quality problem is to move to a digital television format that provides additional lines of resolution, which will be discussed later in this chapter, many manufacturers of large-screen televisions use double painting to enhance the analog image. With double painting, each of the 480 lines ar e displayed twice, with each line slightly offset from the prior line, improving image clarity. With double painting it becomes possible to obtain a decent analog image on a large-screen TV.
Overcoming Bandwidth Problems
The amplitude of the three primary colors — R (red), G (green), and B (blue) — represents a bandwidth hog. To conserve bandwidth, RGB is converted into a more compact format referred to as component video. Component video consists of three signals. The ﬁrst component video signal is luminance, which indicates the brightness of the original RGB signal. Luminance is referred to as the “Y” component. The second and third signals are color difference signals, which indicate how much blue and red there are relative to luminance. The blue component (B-Y) and red component (R-Y) are mathematical derivatives of the RGB signal. Because green can be determined from the Y, B-Y, and R-Y signals, it does not have to be transmitted as a separate signal. Thus, once video information is converted into a component video for mat, bandwidth requirements are reduced by a factor of 3 to 2. All of the component information is then broadcast as a single signal that combines amplitude and phase modulation, reducing required bandwidth to 4.2 MHz under the NTSC system. This single signal, known as composite video, is broadcast to the TV’s antenna or onto the coaxial cable routed into the home. The yellow “video out” jacks on the back of the VCR or DVD player represent composite video signal sources.
Video Image Information
Seven types of electronic information are used to deﬁne a video image when the NTSC format is used. Together, these seven types of electronic information that form a television composite waveform are commonly referred to as composite video (Table 3.2).
Table 3.2 Electronic Information That Forms Composite Video
Horizontal line sync pulse Color reference burst Reference black level Picture luminance Color saturation Color hue Vertical sync pulse
Horizontal Line Sync Pulse
The purpose of the horizontal line sync pulse is to set the electronic beam to a locked position. Doing so ensures that each line of picture information commences at the same position during scanning. Thus, the horizontal line sync pulse is generated before each line is scanned. In addition, it controls a horizontal blanking interval. Within that interval are both the horizontal sync pulse and the color reference burst.
Color Reference Burst
The purpose of the color reference burst is to ensure standard hue and color saturation. To accomplish this task, a 3.58-MHz color reference burst in the form of a sine wave is added before the picture information on each scan line.
Reference Black Level
The reference black level represents the level corresponding to the speciﬁed maximum excursion of the luminance signal in the black direction. Black level is also referred to as “setup” or “pedestal” and is deﬁned as 7.5 IEEE units.
Picture luminance describes the brightness level and ranges from 7.5 IEEE units for black to 100 IEEE units for peak white.
Color has three distinct properties, referred to as hue, value, and saturation. Hue represents the spectral color name whereas value represents lightness or darkness. Saturation represents brightness or dullness. Under the NTSC format, color information is interleaved with picture luminance information through the use of a 3.58-MHz subcarrier. The saturation of the colors is determined by the amplitude of the subcarrier.
As previously noted, hue represents the spectral color name. Color hue is also present in the 3.58-MHz subcarrier signal used to transport color information and luminance.
Vertical Sync Pulse
The purpose of the vertical sync pulse is to control the length of time the television screen is blanked between the end of one ﬁeld and the beginning of the next ﬁeld. This delay is necessary because the electron beam, which is controlled by a magnetic ﬁeld, cannot instantly reposition itself to the ﬁrst line of the television screen. This delay period is referred to as the vertical blanking interval and is sometimes used for the insertion of time code, automatic color tuning, and captioning information into the video signal.
Comparison to PAL and SECAM
The major difference between NTSC and PAL and SECAM color television resides in their use of subcarrier frequencies, phases, and formats, which affect the required bandwidth in megahertz per broadcast channel. Table 3.3 provides a comparison of the three analog color television standards.
Table 3.3 Comparing Analog Color Television Standards
System Aspect Ratio Interlace Frames per Second Total of Active Lines Bandwidth (MHz)
NTSC PAL England Japan SECAM
4:3 4.3 4:3 4:3
2:1 2:1 2:1 2:1
30 25 29.97 25
525/480 625/580 525/480 625/580
4.2 5.5 4.2 6.0
a color monitor that has a VGA (Video Graphics Array) capability will have a resolution of 640 × 480 pixels and its color depth would be 24 bits. Each picture element or pixel has a third dimension referred to as color depth.255) (255.2-MHz NTSC color television signal.255.0) (0. Data Rate Requirement Although an analog video system does not use pixels. For example.4 24-Bit True Color Coding Examples (0.0. Pixels In a digital system an image consists of a series of digital values that represent individual points or picture elements along the path taken to scan the image. In this section we will ﬁrst review the concept of pixels.255.0. many times it is beneﬁcial to consider the required capacity of analog television in terms of a data rate necessary to convey the signal.0) (255.0) (0.255) (255. Thus. Next we will compute the data rate required to convey a 4. Table 3.4 provides eight examples of RGB values encoded as 24-bit true color.255) Black Red Green Blue Yellow Cyan Magenta White .255.0. sufﬁcient to provide a display of approximately 16 million colors. it is convenient to consider the concept of pixels when referring to such systems.56 Understanding IPTV Comparison to Digital Although an analog television system uses a continuous carrier for modulation instead of discrete values. and blue intensities that range between 0 and 255.255.0) (0.255) (255. which is referred to as true color.0. the resolution and color capability of a digital system depend on both its pixel count and the number of bits used to deﬁne the color representation capability of each pixel. We can do this by deﬁning the width of a pixel as one-half the cycle of the highest video Table 3. green. The 3 bytes used for true color represent red.
734 × 0. the number of pixels per line (PPL) becomes PPL = 2B/FH *CH where B = bandwidth in Hz FH = horizontal scanning frequency CH = fraction of the horizontal scanning interval used to signal transmission For the analog color NTSC television system with a bandwidth of 4. Thus. 3. .2 MHz.2 Digital Television On a simpliﬁed basis.200. Because NTSC operates at 30 fps. Unlike analog television. the data rate required to transport an analog color television signal as digital data is 215.040 × 30 or 6.Television Concepts 57 frequency. Broadcasters were initially given a ten-year transition period. a number of compressed digital television program streams are multiplexed into one transmission stream. which was r ecently extended to February 17. the pixels per frame (PPF) becomes PPF = 448 × 480 or 215.040 because 480 represents the number of visible scanning lines.84 = 448 Thus. let’s turn our attention to digital television. which uses one UHF or VHF channel to broadcast each television channel.299 bps Now that we have an appreciation for the fundamentals of analog television. In December 1996 the FCC mandated the conversion of analog television into a digital broadcast TV standard. digital television can be considered to represent a method of transmitting video and audio by turning them into a sequence of 1s and 0s associated with computerized data. 2009. This results in a combined transmission stream carrying multiple television channels and greatly increases the transmission of digital TV over analog television.000/15. and the height of a pixel can be considered to represent the height of one scanning line. the PPL becomes PPL = 2 × 4.451.
480 active lines are used to paint a picture on the television receiver. In addition. the ability to compress digital television permits a number of compressed program streams to be transmitted while minimizing bandwidth requirements. Some of the listed features may require a bit of explanation. In comparison. and sound transported. Thus. Thus. In an analog TV system. however. for now we can note that 480. Today most cable television and satellite operators transmit digital TV to subscribers by ﬂowing content into a settop box that unbundles and decodes programs for viewing.58 Understanding IPTV Overview Digital television refers to the transmission of a television signal and its reception on a digital TV or a set-top box that will convert the picture and sound so it can be displayed and heard on an analog set. Comparison to Analog Previously. color. Table 3. Resolution Resolution plays an important part in the clarity of a picture. several key differences exist between conventional analog color television (SDTV) and digital television. Those differences include the resolution. Some newer digital televisions have an equivalent set-top box built in. allowing them to directly view digital content. we noted several advantages associated with the ability to digitize television. digital television signals result from the direct transmission of digital camera output or from the transformation of analog video camera output through the process of sampling and quantization of the analog signal. resulting in the latter providing both a superior picture and superior sound. Advantages The conversion of an analog signal to digital enables data to be easily manipulated. . picture scanning.5 provides a general comparison between analog and digital television. Thus. This in turn allows the development of compression techniques that minimize both the transmission bandwidth and the storage of information. digital television has 18 formats that we will examine later in this chapter. Sampling refers to how often an analog-to-digital converter samples the signal and quantization references the number of discrete levels to which an analog signal can be converted. let’s brieﬂy discuss each one.
Aspect Ratio The ratio between the width and the height of a picture is the aspect ratio. 480 for digital standard TV Interlaced or progressive 16:9 (or 4:3) Frame sync signal Color Sound Color included in data Six-channel Dolby 5. Picture Scanning Analog television is limited to interlaced scanning. the aspect ratio is 4:3 (1.3.…) and even lines (2.Television Concepts 59 Table 3.5 Comparing Analog and Digital Television Feature Analog Digital Resolution 525 lines with 480 active Interlaced 4:3 Horizontal and vertical sync pulses. Under progressive scanning. This results in 60 frames produced every second. which creates a smoother. In interlaced scanning a frame is subdivided into two ﬁelds: odd lines (1. This aspect ratio was initially selected to match the ratio used in cinema ﬁlms that were popular when television was initially developed. For analog NTSC.4. Combining the two ﬁelds results in the creation of a frame every one-thirtieth of a second.2. various digital television for mats include support for both interlaced and progressive scanning.1 surround sound 720. with the latter two representing highdeﬁnition television (HDTV) resolutions. more vivid picture with considerably less ﬂicker than analog television.3. During the latter part of . This results in an NTSC analog frame rate of 30 fps.4.6.…). Odd-numbered lines are scanned in the ﬁrst one-sixtieth of a second and even-numbered lines are scanned during the second onesixtieth of a second. and 1080 lines are supported. vertical blanking interval Color added as a separate carrier Two-channel FM sound on separate carrier Picture scanning Aspect ratio Synchronization 720 and 1080 lines for HDTV.…) every one-sixtieth of a second for several popular digital formats. the odd and even lines of a picture are scanned sequentially (1. In comparison.5.33:1).
including television and data. Sound The last major difference between analog and digital television is sound. aspect ratio. which was well received for use in many westerns and biblical-themed movies. movie studios gravitated toward widescreen aspect ratios to distance their products from television as well as to provide a more panoramic vision. enhanced-deﬁnition television (EDTV). In comparison. Recognizing the advantages of being able to provide a panoramic view. we need to note that there are a total of 18 digital television formats. NTSC analog television uses horizontal and vertical sync pulses as well as a vertical blanking interval to keep the output of a camera in step with the television r eceiver’s display. in a widescreen format. digital TV uses frame sync signals to pr ovide a similar capability. Color In an NTSC analog system. and HDTV. its availability indicates a growing preference for the ability of consumers to view information.60 Understanding IPTV the 1950s. color information is added as a separate carrier that is multiplexed with monochrome. Widescreen television and cinema has now spread to computing. Table 3. In comparison. of which six are considered to represent HDTV. digital television uses six-channel Dolby 5. . and the type of television system the previously mentioned parameters represent.1 surround sound. digital television can be classiﬁed as SDTV.6.5. Synchronization In the area of synchronization. refresh rate in Hz. Analog television uses two-channel FM sound modulated on a separate carrier. This technique enables color broadcasts to be received on a legacy black-and-white television. In comparison.6 summarizes the 18 ﬂavors of digital television. many modern laptops provide a 16:10 aspect ratio. digital television transports color information in each pixel. Digital Television Formats In examining the entries in Table 3. including their vertical and horizontal resolution. digital television manufacturers began using an aspect ratio of 16:9 (1. Although not matching the 16:9 ratio of digital television.85:1). As indicated in Table 3.
this digital format is also often referred to as 480i/30. Both 4:3 and 16:9 aspect ratios are supported as well as refresh .6 Digital Television Formats Format Index Vertical Resolution Horizontal Resolution Aspect Ratio Scan Type Refresh Rate System Type 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 480 720 720 750 1080 1080 1080 640 640 640 640 704 704 704 704 704 704 704 704 1280 1280 1280 1280 1920 1920 4:3 4:3 4:3 4:3 4:3 4:3 4:3 4:3 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 16:9 Interlaced Progressive Progressive Progressive Interlaced Progressive Progressive Progressive Interlaced Progressive Progressive Progressive Progressive Progressive Progressive Interlaced Progressive Progressive 30 24 30 60 30 24 30 60 30 24 30 60 24 30 60 30 24 30 SDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV EDTV HDTV HDTV HDTV HDTV HDTV HDTV Standard-Deﬁnition Television The ﬁrst digital TV format shown in Table 3. Because SDTV uses a data rate between 4 and 7 Mbps. It is used when bandwidth is a larger concern than picture quality. Enhanced Deﬁnition Television Enhanced-deﬁnition television (EDTV) consists of 11 formats. including both progressive and interlaced screen painting. because its refresh rate is 30 fps.Television Concepts 61 Table 3. Because it uses 480 lines of vertical resolution that are interlaced. between three and six SDTV channels can be multiplexed into the same bandwidth required to support one HDTV channel. This SDTV digital format is equivalent to the interlaced output of DVDvideo in a 4:3 aspect ratio. it is referred to as 480i.6 represents SDTV. The vertical resolution is limited to 480 lines. In addition. with horizontal resolution varying from 640 to 704 lines.
which represents almost a seven-fold improvement in picture detail over SDTV. 30. 30. Such plasma TVs typically are limited to supporting EDTV and although they produce a brilliant color picture with very good clarity they are not as good as a true HDTV. which has a resolution of 480 × 640. in reality only a handful of channels are broadcast in HDTV mode. If you subscribe to cable or satellite television service and enroll in their HDTV service. you will receive an HDTV set-top box that has a monthly rental approximately twice to three times that of the provider’s regular digital box. Each of the digital television formats listed in Table 3. that resolution is used primarily for interlaced scanning due to current limitations of broadcasting equipment and consumer television products. each providing a picture superior to SDTV and EDTV. Although Table 3. two independent HDTV channels that show movies and special events. Because an EDTV set lacks the electronics to generate 720 or 1080 lines of resolution. resulting in a display consisting of 307. The 1080p format can be viewed as providing a path for future growth as imaging and display technologies evolve. and a sports channel in high deﬁnition. color resolution is also improved over SDTV by a factor of two. In addition to an enhanced resolution. EDTV is used when a better picture quality than SDTV is desired but bandwidth constraints preclude the use of true HDTV. providing a widescreen view. High-Deﬁnition Television HDTV has six distinct formats. In addition. assuming you subscribe to one or more premium channels.073.6 indicates that both interlaced and progressive scanning are supported in a vertical resolution of 1080 lines. and 60 fps. At its highest resolution of 1080 × 1920. Typically. such as HBO in high deﬁnition. When a 720-line vertical resolution is employed. HDTV offers an image consisting of 2. Although the box is billed as an HDTV set-top box.600 pixels.6 uses MPEG-2 for video compression. they cost less than sets with an HDTV receiver.200 pixels.62 Understanding IPTV rates of 24. scanning occurs progressively and refresh rates of 24. the HDTV set-top box will allow you to view one or more high-deﬁnition premium channels. Later in this chapter we will discuss the use of . If you visit an electronics store you may notice many low-cost plasma televisions available for purchase. your television provider will carry the three major networks. and 60 fps are supported. All six HDTV formats are in a 16:9 aspect ratio.
Although this mandate will not affect analog television sets connected to cable or satellite television.Television Concepts 63 compression to minimize the bandwidth required to transport a digital television signal. HDTV Reception Although you can receive HDTV through the use of an appropriate settop box when you subscribe to a cable or satellite television service. A second type of HDTV receiver is emerging in popularity due to the FCC mandate that will require all broadcast analog television stations to convert to digital on or before February 17. which makes it possible to connect the receiver to any of the three types of digital televisions available for purchase. That technique is lossy compression. Under what many people refer to as NTSC legacy analog television. digital television supports Dolby Digital audio encoding for all 18 digital TV formats.1-channel (four speakers and woofer) surround-sound format. Although Dolby Digital is familiar to readers who have a home theater or visit the movies. In addition.0 channel (mono) and 2. 720p. Now that we have an appreciation for analog and digital television. more than 30 million analog television sets in use do not have cable or satellite service. those television sets will not be able to receive any TV signal unless they use a conversion box that receives digital TV signals and converts those to analog. or 1080i. 2009. 2009 arrives.0 channels (stereo) when the original programming being transmitted has only a mono or stereo soundtrack. which is the focus of the third section of this chapter. we will conclude this chapter by examining the technique that enables digital television to be transported using considerably less bandwidth than its unaltered series of frames requires. Most HDTV receivers allow you to specify the output format. such as 480p. sound is provided through two-channel FM that is transported on a separate carrier from the TV signal. Dolby Digital can scale upward to 6.1 extended surround sound. Dolby Digital represents a scalable digital encoding algorithm that supports 1. it is also possible to receive HDTV via over-the-air broadcasts. it is actually more ﬂexible than just a 5. . because the set-top box performs any required conversion. Sound One aspect of digital television commonly overlooked is its sound quality. To do this you normally will need to connect your antenna to an HDTV terrestrial receiver that tunes and decodes all 18 digital television for mats. When February 17. In comparison.
As we will note later in this chapter. Associated with each pixel are two values — luminance and chrominance. green. developed a series of standards for the compressed representation of audio and video. Thus. Parts of MPEG-1 MPEG-1 was primarily developed for the coding of moving pictures and associated audio for digital storage media at up to approximately a data . One method is by specifying an appropriate mixture of the three primary colors (red. to paraphrase a popular tune from The Sound of Music.3 Lossy Compression As brieﬂy indicated in Chapter 2. The majority of digital video broadcasting (DVB) uses MPEG-2 compression. Characteristics of Digital Video Digital video can be viewed as a sequence of images. can be much greater than the ratio obtained when a lossless compression method. This ratio. since its founding in 1988. a working group of the International Standards Organization (ISO) that has.64 Understanding IPTV 3. lossy compression provides a mechanism to considerably increase the ratio of noncompressed original data to its compressed equivalent. Another method is to specify the luminance (Y) and chrominance (U and V). in this section. Several methods can be used to represent the color of a pixel. technically referred to as the compression ratio. “we will begin at the beginning” our examination of MPEG by ﬁrst turning our attention to MPEG-1. is used. and blue). the YUV system allows color to be approximated using only two variables and represents one of several mechanisms by which lossy compression obtains a high compression ratio when operating on a digital video stream. This standard was used for the development of such products as the video CD and MP3 players. MPEG-1 MPEG-1 represents the ﬁrst of a series of MPEG standards developed by the Motion Picture Experts Group. each of which represents a two-dimensional frame of picture elements that are commonly referred to as pixels or pels. where the term MPEG refers to the Motion Picture Experts Group. which returns data to its exact original form. The luminance is a value proportional to the pixel’s intensity and the chrominance is a value that represents the color of the pixel.
Television Concepts 65 Table 3.7. we will focus our attention on Parts 2 and 3 of the standard.5 Mbps Deﬁnes a coded representation that can be used for compressing both mono and stereo audio sequences Deﬁnes how tests can be used to verify if bitstreams and decoders meet the requirements of the prior parts of the standard A technical report that provides a full software implementation of the ﬁrst three parts of the standard rate of 1. and the discrete cosine transformation (DCT) operates on 8 × 8 pixel blocks to organize redundancy in the spatial direction. and other data are Huffman coded using ﬁxed tables. which deﬁne techniques used to compress video and audio. motion vectors. quantization parameters. Although this is important for transmission and storage. Each frame represents a still image. which results in strings of 0s suitable for compression. a search is performed for a close match to that block in a previous or future block.7. The standard is deﬁ ned in ﬁve parts. note that Part 1 of the standard represents an important function because it enables audio and video to be stored or transmitted as a single entity. resulting in many coefﬁcients being 0. which are summarized in Table 3.7 The Parts of the MPEG-1 Standard Part Description 1 2 3 4 5 Addresses the problem of combining one or more data streams from the video and audio parts of the standard with timing information to form a single data stream Deﬁnes a coded representation that can be used for compressing both 525 and 625 lines to bit rates of approximately 1. I frames are intra-frames whereas P (predicted) frames are produced from the most recently reconstructed I or P frame. and B. for each 16 × 16 pixel block in the current frame. Motion is predicted from frame to frame in the temporal direction in the luminance (Y) channel on 16 × 16 blocks. In this section we will ﬁrst examine each of the encoding processes speciﬁed under . In examining the entries in Table 3. Although images are in color. the DCT coefﬁcients.5 Mbps. B frames. Then. P. are predicted from the closest I or P frames. respectively. they are converted into YUV space (luminance and two chrominance values). The DCT coefﬁcients are quantized. Thus. Overview The MPEG-1 standard covers three types of coded frames: I. or bidirectional frames.
each pel is represented as Y. which consists of red (R). where neighboring samples on a scanning line are similar. The color of each pel is deﬁned by three components: Y (luminance). each pel in a picture.3. green (G). MPEG-1 uses coding techniques to reduce both spatial redundancy. Figure 3. with each picture treated as a two-dimensional array of pixels (picture elements or pels). where neighboring images in a video sequence are similar. and Cr (second chrominance component). the average pixel value is substituted in the appropriate location in the approximated image. Next. Cr. Cr. and blue (B) components.G. subsampling by 2 in both the x and y directions results in every second line and second column being ignor ed.B. This second technique is more complex but normally results in better quality images.66 Understanding IPTV the MPEG-1 standard. video is represented as a sequence of pictures. that component is encoded with full resolution. whereas the CbCr components are subsampled. Because human sight is more sensitive to Y. This results in a reduction of data without affecting the visual quality of the image. the luminance component remains intact. It reduces the amount of data by simply discarding some of it. Under MPEG-1. While the color component of the image is subsampled by 2 in both directions. Once this is accomplished. Cb. This is done because human vision is much less sensitive to chrominance than it is to luminance. is converted to Y. we will tur n our attention to how intra-frame and inter-frame coding are performed under the standard. This is less correlated than R.3 illustrates the subsample process. Video Compression In the MPEG-1 standard. A second method requires ﬁrst computing the average pixel value for each group of several pixels. To obtain a high compression ratio. The ﬁrst method involves copying the original image but only using a portion of the original pixels. which means that the former can be coded more efﬁciently. Color Space Conversion Under the MPEG-1 standard. Subsampling represents the most basic of all image compression techniques. and temporal redundancy. There are two primary methods of subsampling. In Figure 3. Y’s resolution is four times the resolution of the CbCr subsample. Cb (ﬁrst chrominance component). . Cb. Subsampling After the previously mentioned conversion.
j]) occurs. Then. Quantization Once color space conversion and subsampling of chrominance information are completed. Thus. Thus. In the MPEG-1 standard. Each time a pel’s matrix (X[i.j]) is used to deﬁne quantization steps.j]) . To do this. the values of the missing in-between pixels can be approximated through interpolation.3 An example of the subsample process. subsampling color images in this manner reduces the number of bits required to specify the chrominance component by three fourths. the next step is to reduce the resulting data through the process of quantization. Although the subsampling process relies on the ability of human visual perception to ﬁll in the gaps. quantization refers to the process of approximating the continuous set of values in an image so that they have a ﬁnite set of values.j]/Q[i. Because we can round a real to an integer.j]) = Round (X[i.j]). As a refresher. Subsampling is obviously nonreversible and thus lossy. the use of quantization enables a lesser number of bits to represent a continuous set of values. we obtain (Xq[i. the pel matrix is divided by the quantized value matrix (Xq[i. the receiver or decoder can attempt to restore pixels that were removed due to subsampling. a quantiﬁer matrix (Q[i.Television Concepts 67 Figure 3. adjacent pixels of the subsampled image are compared.j]) with the same size as (Q[i.
Discrete Cosine Transform Under the MPEG-1 standard. Through the careful design of Q[i. the visual quality of the quantized image will appear to the human eye reasonably similar to the original image. and two-dimensional DCT is required for the analysis of two-dimensional signals. The inverse of quantization is referred to as inverse quantization.4 illustrates an example of the quantization process on an 8 × 8 block based on Q[i. such as speech waveforms. The DCT represents a technique for converting a signal into elementary frequency components. A onedimensional DCT is used in processing one-dimensional signals. The difference between the actual and reconstructed values is referred to as the quantization error and explains why MPEG-1 is referred to as a lossy compression method.j] equal to 2. 8 × 8 pel blocks are converted to another 8 × 8 using the discrete cosine transform.j] * Q[i.j] equals 2.j] = Xq[i. which is expressed mathematically as follows: X1[i.j] Because the quantization equation uses the round function to obtain the nearest integer value.j]. such as images.4 An example of the quantization process when Q[i. For an m × n matrix S. Figure 3.68 Understanding IPTV Non-Quantized 487 1 3 2 1 2 3-3 -5 1 2 1 4 1 0 0 21311125 -2 -1 0 1 1 2 2 2 -1 -2 0 0-1 0 1 2 2 -1 0 0 1 1 2 1 3 -1 0 0 0 0 1 0 -1 -1 -2 -1 0 0 1 0 Quantization Result 293 0 1 1 0 1 1-1 -1 0 1 0 1 0 0 0 10100012 -1 0 0 0 0 1 1 1 0-1 0 0 0 0 0 1 10000010 10000000 0 0 -1 0 0 0 0 0 Figure 3. the . the reconstructed or dequantized value will not be the same as the original value.
we obtain S(u. y = 0. =1 otherwise For the two-dimensional 8 × 8 pel DCT transform. the transform of S is S(u. For sequences of 0s. This action retains a high level of precision. 1…7 C(u) = 2–1/2 for u = 0.2) where: u. x. value) pairs. RLE is used only on the AC component. the other coefﬁcient values are called AC coefﬁcients.Television Concepts 69 two-dimensional DCT is applied to each row of the matrix S and then to each column of the result.v ) = 2C(u ) nm ∑ ∑ S(x. where “skip” represents the number of 0s and “value” is the next nonzer o value encountered. differential pulse code modulation (DPCM) is used. run-length encoding (RLE) is used to compress the results of the DCT and quantization process.0) in DCT is referred to as the DC coefﬁcient. DPCM can be viewed as an extension of pulse code modulation in which the difference between the previous output and a new source are encoded . then frequency domain data results in low-frequency data being larger and high-frequency data being smaller.…m C(u) = 2–1/2 for u = 0. After the application of the DCT process and quantization. a majority of the AC values will be 0. For the DC component. the bitstream is encoded as (skip.…n v = 0. The coefﬁcient location (0. v. data in the time domain is converted to data in the frequency domain. In comparison. Thus. To do so.y )Cos y =0 x =0 m −1 n −1 (2 x + 1)uΠ Cos(2 y + 1)uΠ 2n 2m (3. the resulting coefﬁcients. We can view the DCT as changing the representation of data as an array of 64 values (8 × 8) into a varying signal that can be approximated by a set of 64 cosine functions with a series of amplitudes that can be represented as a matrix of coefﬁcients. resulting in large quantization steps being used to quantize AC coefﬁcients whereas small quantization steps are used to quantize the DC coefﬁcient.y )Cos(2Π + 1) 16 Cos(2y + 1) 16 y =0 x=0 7 7 uΠ vΠ (3.v ) = 1/ 4 2C(u )C( v ) ∑ ∑ S(x. when scanned in an applicable zig-zag order. Although the DCT process by itself does not result in compression.1) where: u = 0. If there is little variation of data in the time domain. tend to be good candidates for compression. otherwise C(u) = 1 Through the use of DCT.
. –1. Once the zig-zag process is applied to the block.. At this point a zig-zag scan process is used to gather more consecutive 0s. The value 293 is the DC coefﬁcient and is not coded. 1.6 A portion of a zig-zag scan. 1. 1. 0. data is further reduced through motion estimation.5 Differential pulse code modulation. 0. Note that by encoding the difference instead of the new source values a lesser number of bits is required.. After the application of DCT and quantization. Figure 3. 1. most AC values will be set to 0.5 illustrates the creation of differences between a previous output sequence and a new source sequence. A frame is selected as a reference and subsequent frames are predicted from the reference. 0. instead of the actual values of the new source. 0. . DPCM is used to predict the DC coefﬁcient. Motion Estimation Under the MPEG-1 standard. 0. 0. Motion estimation is used to predict the values of a block of pixels in the current picture. Figure 3. This process of video compression using motion estimation is also referred to as inter-frame coding.70 Understanding IPTV New Source Previous Output Differential Values 132574103 012483012 1 2 0 1 -1 1 0 -1 1 Figure 3. 0. Instead. 1. value) pairs. –1. Figure 3.. 293 0 1 –1 0 1 1 0 1 –1 0 0 0 –1 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 –1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 –1 0 0 1 2 1 1 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 Zigzag data: 293. the resulting bitstream is encoded as (skip.6 illustrates a portion of the zig-zag scanning process applied to an 8 × 8 block and the resulting data.
During the decoding process the decoder uses this information to reconstruct frames. Under the MPEG-1 standard. In this example. the encoder computes motion vectors and their associated prediction errors. motion compensation is the inverse of motion estimation. Figure 3.7 shows an example of the motion estimation process on a 4 × 5 pixel block for ease of illustration. the reference frame is used to predict the current frame based on the use of the motion vectors. This vector is referred to as the motion vector and the difference between the two blocks is known as the prediction error. a vector that denotes the displacement of the macroblock in the reference frame with respect to the macroblock in the current frame is computed. Motion Compensation During the reconstruction process. MPEG-1 speciﬁes the use of variable-length coding (VLC) as the last step of the encoding process. Thus. this technique is referred to as bidirectional prediction.7 can also be considered to represent a forward prediction process. Each macroblock is then compared to a macroblock in the reference frame and the best matching macroblock is selected. Frame N serves as a reference for motion estimation on Frame N + 1. typically 8 × 8 or 16 × 16 pixels in size. the prediction is referred to as backward prediction. Variable-Length Coding As a mechanism to further reduce data redundancy. Figure 3. In comparison. When both forward and backward predictions are used together.7 Motion estimation example. When a previous frame is used as a reference. when the reference frame represents a future frame. As you might surmise. Next. Variable-length coding can be considered to represent a statistical coding technique in which short codewords are used to represent .Television Concepts 71 Frame N 76 81 79 80 81 78 82 79 80 81 79 82 83 79 80 80 81 81 80 80 Frame N+1 79 80 79 81 81 79 81 79 80 81 80 81 82 80 80 80 81 82 81 80 Motion vector 3 –1 0 1 0 –1 1 –1 –1 0 –1 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 Figure 3. a process referred to as motion compensation. Inter-frame coding or motion estimation occurs by dividing the current frame into macroblocks. the prediction is referred to as forward prediction.
and the second entry stores the corresponding codewords for each data symbol. let’s assume the following binary data occurs at the receiver: 01101110010… This binary string is instantly decoded as s1. with the latter predicted from the closest I or P frames. s4. The actual encoding of an . s3. To illustrate its instantaneously decoding capability. s2 When we assign codes to symbols based on the probability of symbols occurring in data we create the well-known Huffman code. consider a VLC with ﬁve symbols. Under the MPEG-1 standard. The basic coding unit of the I frame is a block.72 Understanding IPTV frequently occurring values and longer codewords are used to represent less frequently occurring values. When I frames are coded only the spatial redundancy is reduced because the frame serves as a reference for P and B frames. s1 through s5. If the code alphabet is binary we can assign the following values to s1 through s5. so that we obtain an instantaneous code in which no symbol is a pr eﬁx of any other symbol and a decoding tree is easily constructed: s1 = 0 s2 = 10 s3 = 110 s4 = 1110 s5 = 1111 The preceding code is an instantaneous code because no symbol is a preﬁx of any other symbol. encoding and decoding employ the use of a code table with two entries. one of Cb chrominance. in the source code 5. Thus. One entry represents the possible symbols or original data. For example. whereas a macroblock consists of six blocks: four of luminance. Intra-Frame Coding An I (or intra-) frame is a frame coded as a still image without any past history. we can view an I frame as a beginning or reference for predicted (P) frames and bidirectional (B) frames. That block is an 8 × 8 matrix. and one of Cr chrominance. s1.
9 lists the steps required to perform inter-frame encoding. Note that the encoder has to make a series of decisions when it performs motion compensation. the coding of P and B frames is mor e complex than for I frames because motion-compensated macroblocks may be created. the dif ference between the motioncompensated macroblock and the current macroblock is transformed through the use of two-dimensional DCT. use VLC to encode it Use RLE to encode AC value. resulting in the creation of an array of 8 × 8 transform coefﬁcients. Once the frame coding method is determined. which can take advantage of the fact that motion estimation can signiﬁcantly reduce the amount of data required to represent P and B frames. When this occurs.8 Intra-Frame Encoding Steps Decompose image into RGB components Convert RGB to YCbCr Divide image into macroblocks Perform DCT on each block Quantize each coefﬁcient in block Gather AC value Use DPCM to encode DC value.or predicted frame. use VLC to encode it I frame follows an eight-step process. As you might expect.8 summarizes the steps involved in encoding an I frame. First. Thus. it has to decide how to divide the picture into macroblocks. Table 3. Intra-frame coding does not examine the differences between frames. it is not as effective as inter-frame coding. the encoder must then determine how to set the quantizer scale so that a balance is obtained between the level of compression obtained and the quality of the decompr essed frame. it focuses on reducing the data required to represent a single frame.Television Concepts 73 Table 3. . Table 3. Inter-Frame Coding Inter-frame coding represents the process by which P and B frames are created. The resulting coefﬁcients are quantized and then encoded using a run-length data compression technique. it needs to determine the best motion vectors to use. similar to the manner by which JPEG operates. although intra-frame coding can obtain a signiﬁcant degree of compression. Instead. Once this is accomplished the encoder must decide whether to code each macroblock as an intra. Next.
8 illustrates the relationships among I. Figure 3. 1 for Cr) Perform DCT on each block Quantize each coefﬁcient Gather AC value Reconstruct frame and store it in frame buffer Apply DPCM to encode DC value and use VLC to encode it Use RLE to encode AC value and then use VLC to encode it B-Frame Coding The B (or bidirectional) frames are predicted from the closest two I or P frames — one in the past and one in the future. The encoder searches for matching blocks in those frames. the encoder computes a forward vector and a backward vector and averages the two blocks from the future and past frames. . trying three different approaches to determine which approach works best. B. and P frames. 1 for Cb. B.8 Relationships among I.74 Understanding IPTV Table 3. That is.9 Inter-Frame Encoding Steps Decompose image into three RGB components Convert RGB to YCbCr Perform motion estimation between encoding frame and reference frame Divide image into macroblock consisting of 6 blocks (4 for Y. subtracting the average from the block being coded. Note that P frames use motion to deﬁne the dependence between continuous Figure 3. and P frames.
inter-frame coding reduces the encoded bit rate by coding frames with respect to the previous encoded frame (P) and sometimes the subsequent (B) frame. After this. each coefﬁcient is quantized and AC values are gathered via a zig-zag scan process. Next. Coding decisions. The coding of the B frame involves a series of decisions. when both forward and backward motion vectors are present. which are used as a reference for the creation of B and P frames. Concerning delay. Summary As indicated in this section. after which DPCM is applied to encode the DC value. MPEG-1 Audio Previously. First. One advantage associated with B frames is that they reduce noise at low bit rates. and buffer requirements are negative aspects associated with the use of B frames. the encoding process requires more types of macroblocks to be considered. after which VLC is used to encode the compressed AC value. This method of coding results in a higher compression ratio than intra-frame coding but requires a large computational effort. the MPEG-1 standard deﬁnes 12 types of macroblocks for B frames. bandwidth. Intraframe coding can be considered to represent a starting point for further reduction of data because this results in compressed I frames. MPEG-1 uses intra-frame and inter-frame coding to reduce the quantity of data that needs to be transmitted. However. a DCT operation occurs on each block. the computational complexity. delay. additional delay is introduced in the encoding process because the frame used for backward prediction has to be transmitted to the decoder before the intermediate B frame can be decoded and displayed. which provide additional types over P frames due to the introduction of a backward motion vector.Television Concepts 75 frames whereas the B frame functions as a mechanism for increasing the frame rate without having to signiﬁcantly increase the bit rate. Once a motion compensation mode is selected and required computations are performed. This requires an averaging process to form an interpolated motion-compensated macroblock. In addition. . we focused on MPEG-1 video. VLC is used to encode the DC value and RLE is used to encode the AC value. In this section we turn our attention to the manner by which sound is digitized under the MPEG-1 standard. In comparison. Thus. the motioncompensated macroblocks need to be constructed from both future and previous frames.
Although Layer III supports a variable bit rate. In Layer I. Under the MPEG-1 audio standard. Those modes are mono. and III. which is divided into data blocks.76 Understanding IPTV Coding Schemes There are three different coding schemes for digitized sound under the MPEG-1 standard. The well-known . After removal of the portions of audio signals that cannot be heard. an MPEG-1 audio encoder transforms sound signals into the frequency domain and eliminates those frequency components that cannot be heard due to their masking by stronger frequency components. Each block is encoded within an MPEG-1 audio frame. the remaining audio is quantized into a bitstream. and whether the frame is Cyclic Redundancy Check (CRC) protected. . most MPEG-1 audio decoders support variable bit rates for all layers. Four different audio modes are supported by the standard. with an MPEG-1 audio stream consisting of a series of consecutive audio frames. The header is then followed by the encoded sound data. Stereo Mode Support MPEG-1 audio supports one.and two-channel audio signals. II. lower layer support is optional. Bit Rate Support MPEG-1 audio supports a wide range of bit rates from 32 kbps to 320 kbps. an audio frame consists of a header that contains such information as the MPEG layer. perceptual coding eliminates those parts of a sound signal that are not applicable to the human ear. Audio Layers MPEG-1 audio layers increase in complexity and coding efﬁciency as they progress from Layer I to Layer II and then to Layer III.mp3 ﬁle extension was created with the development of MPEG-1 Layer III encoder and decoder software for the Windows operating system. In effect. blocks consist of 384 audio samples. Similar to video frames. Those coding schemes are referred to as Layers I. the number of channels. whereas in Layers II and III there are 1152 samples in a block. the type of information an encoder has to produce and not the encoder is standardized. Perceptual audio coding occurs instead of lossy coding. A low sampling frequency extension included in MPEG-2 extends the data rate downward to 8 kbps. the sampling frequency. However.
Goto. Parts 4 and 5 of MPEG-2 correspond to Parts 4 and 5 of MPEG-1. The r esulting MPEG-2 standard is capable of encoding SDTV at bit rates from approximately 3 to 15 Mbps and HDTV at bit rates from 15 to 30 Mbps. MPEG-2 has nine parts. This extension to the MPEG-1 standard dates to 1990. when the Motion Picture Experts Group realized it was necessary to develop a requirement for coding video broadcasts at higher data rates than MPEG-1’s support of bit rates up to 1. ranging from coding high-bit-rate data to pictures with different color resolutions. and audio. Part 3 of MPEG-2 represents a backward-compatible multichannel extension of the MPEG-1 audio standard. Fast Forward. which has ﬁve parts. Digital Storage Media Command and Control (DSM-CC). . Overview Similar to MPEG-1. video. Part 6 of MPEG-2. However. as are the algorithms used to process video. joint stereo. unlike MPEG-1. A syntax for controlling VCR-style and random-access disks is deﬁned. and Part 5 contains an example C language software encoder and compliant decoder for video and audio. MPEG-2 extends the stereo audio capabilities of MPEG-1 to multichannel surroundsound coding. Part 4 deﬁnes the meaning of conformance for system. and so on. In addition. The primary purpose of Part 1 is to deﬁne a syntax for transporting packets of audio and video bitstreams and a syntax for their synchronization. with the latter providing two independent channels that can be used to support two languages. represents a set of protocols that controls MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 bitstreams. Parts of MPEG-2 Part 1 of MPEG-2 addresses how one or more elementary video and audio streams as well as other data can be combined into one or more data streams suitable for storage or transmission.5 Mbps.Television Concepts 77 stereo. including such commands as Still Frame. Part 2 also deﬁnes a series of proﬁles that offer different functionalities. MPEG-2 MPEG-2 is the most commonly used method to compress audio and video signals. Part 2 of MPEG-2 builds on the video compression capabilities deﬁned by the prior MPEG-1 standard. Under Part 2 the header and bitstreams are deﬁned. MPEG-2 is a standard with many parts. and dual channel.
This proﬁle is suitable for low-delay applications. Work on Part 8 was discontinued due to a lack of industry interest.10 provides a summary of the key differences between MPEG-2 and MPEG-1. a proﬁle represents a subset of algorithmic tools and a level identiﬁes a set of constraints on parameter values. Part 9 of MPEG-2 deﬁnes the speciﬁcation of the Real-Time Interface (RTI) for transporting video-on-demand control signals between set-top boxes and headend servers. Referred to as proﬁles and levels. such as the picture size or bit rate. The main proﬁle adds support for B frames and is the more widely used proﬁle. Part 7 removes the constraint of having audio that is backward compatible with MPEG-1. however. The simple proﬁle uses no B frames. simple and main. Proﬁles With MPEG-2 a small number of subsets of the complete toolkit ar e deﬁned. Thus. which reduces both processing requirements and the delay associated with the computations. Thus. Part 8 introduces a 10-bit video extension whose primary application is for studio video that requires 10 bits of sample precision. MPEG-2 video represents an extension to MPEG-1 video.10 MPEG-2 Additions Deﬁnes nonscalable and scalable proﬁles Deﬁnes four levels of coding parameters Supports interlaced or progressive video sequences Changes meaning of aspect ratio information variable . such as videoconferencing. MPEG-2 provides extra algorithms beyond those supported by MPEG-1 that can be used to efﬁciently code interlaced video at a wide range of data rates. there are no backward or interpreted predictions. Table 3.78 Understanding IPTV Part 7 of MPEG-2 represents a speciﬁcation for a multichannel audio coding algorithm that is not backward compatible with the MPEG-1 audio speciﬁcation. where the overall endto-end delay is approximately 100 ms. Under MPEG-2 two nonscalable proﬁles. it adds Table 3. are deﬁned. Using B frames increases video quality. Comparison to MPEG-1 As previously mentioned.
Table 3. adds support for coding a 4:2:2 video signal. Video Sequencing Under the MPEG-2 standard. The SNR proﬁle can be used for digital terrestrial television as a method of providing for graceful degradation. The SNR proﬁle adds support for the enhancement layers of DCT coefﬁcient reﬁnement by using a signal-tonoise (S/N) ratio scalability tool. MPEG-2 also supports two scalable proﬁles. and buffer size required for each level. referred to as the high proﬁle. A third proﬁle. Levels MPEG-2 deﬁnes four levels of coding parameter constraints. the spatial proﬁle provides a way to broadcast HDTV with a main proﬁle-compatible SDTV service. Note that SDTV requires main level. referred to as the SNR proﬁle and the spatial proﬁle.2 Mbps. maximum bit rate. frame rate. both interlaced and pr ogressive video sequencing are supported. MPEG-1 is limited to the support of progressive sequences because the target application was the compact video disk. . In comparison. including frame resolution. where the terms represent the sampling structure of the digital picture such that chrominance is horizontally subsampled by a factor of 2 relative to the luminance.11 lists the upper limits of the constraints for each level.Television Concepts 79 Table 3. whereas HDTV requires a high-1440 level. which required a data rate of 1. The spatial proﬁle adds support for enhancement layers that transport coded images at different resolutions. The main proﬁle is backward compatible with MPEG-1 video. the simple proﬁle is not.11 MPEG-2 Upper Limit Coding Parameter Constraints Level Frame Width (Pixels) Frame Height (Pixels) Frame Rate (Hz) Bit Rate (Mbps) Buffer Size (Bits) Low Main High-1440 High 352 720 1440 1920 288 576 1152 1152 30 30 60 60 4 15 60 80 475136 1835008 7340032 9781248 approximately 120 ms to the coding delay to support frame reordering.
80 Understanding IPTV Aspect Ratio The MPEG-2 standard changed the meaning behind the variable used to deﬁne aspect ratio information as well as signiﬁcantly reduced the number of deﬁned aspect ratios. or 2. Another difference concerns the support for scanning quantized coefﬁcients. The display aspect ratio can be 4:3. vertical and horizontal range speciﬁers. In addition to the zig-zag scanning process that is supported by both MPEG-2 and MPEG-1. also known as the sample aspect ratio (SAR). where a square pixel used in computer graphics has a pixel aspect ratio. such as 4:3 or 16:9. Because the purpose of this chapter is to become acquainted with the manner by which the MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 standards reduce the data transmission requirements of digital video signals. The relationship of the width and height in pixels to the SAR and DAR is as follows: Width/height = DAR/SAR Frame Rate Another difference between MPEG-1 and MPEG-2 is the meaning of the variable used to deﬁne the frame rate. which are rectangular. The pixel aspect ratio should not be confused with the display aspect ratio (DAR). In comparison. have an aspect ratio of width:height (W:H). under MPEG-1 the variable references the coded frame rate. under MPEG-2 two new variables were deﬁned that can be used with the frame rate variable to specify a much wider variety of display frame rates. where W and H are not equal. of 1:1. In addition. the latter describes the shape of the physically displayed image as measured with a ruler. Those differences include the concept of the slice. In fact. there are a signiﬁcant number of minute differences between the two standards. we will . the MPEG-2 speciﬁcation uses the video stream header to specify the intended display aspect ratio instead of the pixel aspect ratio. video pixels. In comparison. which were added under the MPEG-2 standard. under the MPEG-1 standard the aspect ratio refers to the particular pixel.21:1. aspect ratio information refers to the overall display aspect ratio. 16:9. the former added support for an additional scan pattern that is used to scan quantized coefﬁcients resulting from interlaced source frames. Under MPEG-2 the variable references the intended display rate. Other Differences In addition to the previously mentioned differences between MPEG-2 and MPEG-1. and the ability to perform nonlinear macroblock quantization. With MPEG-2.
we will brieﬂy discuss a video coding standard developed by both the ISO/IEC (International Engineering Consortium) and ITU-T (the Telecommunication Standardization Sector of the International Telecommunications Union). Overview The H. including both ﬁxed and wireless operations. including providing DVD-quality video at a data rate under 1 Mbps.264 standard supports both IP and non-IP-based operations.Television Concepts 81 not probe deeper into the differences. In comparison.264 multimedia compression standard is similar to its predecessors in that its design is based on a sequence of actions referred to as building blocks. such as quarter-pixel motion accuracy. Referred to as the H. Goal The primary goal of the H.264 standard. The result is the achievement of an approximate 50 percent reduction in the bit rate required to transport multimedia in comparison to previously developed standards. which increases its computational complexity in order to obtain a greater compression capability. Thus. H.264 standard . Where it differs from its predecessors is in additional algorithms. the H. The NAL is r esponsible for packing coded data based on the characteristics of the network that will be used as the transport facility.264 standard is a video compression standard that provides a signiﬁcantly greater compression capability than its predecessors. this standard is also known as MPEG-4 AVC (advanced video coding). The H. the VCL is responsible for generating an efﬁcient representation of the data. Layers The H. the NAL manages transport over the network and the VCL represents a networkindependent interface. Many books and Internet-accessible white papers specialize in this information. In effect.264 In concluding our discussion of lossy compression.264 standard has two distinct layers: the network abstraction layer (NAL) and the video coding layer (VCL). The H.264 standard is to obtain a high compression ratio while preserving video quality.
264 standard. Up to seven modes of variable block sizes and 16 motion . eliminating the transform mismatch between the encoder and decode that occurs when a conventional ﬁxed-point DCT is used. the block size of the transform is reduced to 4 × 4. Use of an Integer DCT-Like Transform The H. which enables a better quality result to be obtained during decoding.12 lists some of the more prominent features associated with H.264 standard deﬁnes the use of an integer DCT-like transform.12 Key Features of H.264 standard is similar to other multimedia compression techniques because it uses the spatial and temporal redundancies within and between frames to reduce the quantity of data. Intra-Prediction To exploit the spatial redundancies between adjacent blocks of a picture. In addition. Operation The H. Table 3. Nine different intra-prediction modes for macroblocks are supported by the H. coding the difference between the actual value and the predicted value.264 standard predicts the pixel value of a block from adjacent blocks. DVDs.264 video coding. and content delivery servers streaming data to set-top boxes.264 standard differs in the techniques it uses.82 Understanding IPTV Table 3.264 Video Coding Grouping of macroblocks for intra-prediction Use of an integer DCT-like transform Variable-block motion compensation Quantization parameters can be considered a Swiss Army knife of multimedia compression capability because it can be used with PDAs. the H. the H. This transform is an approximate of the conventional DCT designed to enable its core functions to be computed via adders and shifters. motion compensation occurs using variable block sizes. satellite. However.264 standard. Variable Block Motion Compensation Under the H.
with an approximate 12 percent increase in the magnitude of the step size from one quantization parameter to another.Television Concepts 83 vectors are supported for each macroblock.264 standard to have an increased level of implementation. a total of 52 quantization parameters are supported by the standard. its higher complexity than MPEG-2 resulted in the vast majority of current set-top boxes supporting the earlier standard. a nonlinear quantization process is supported. In addition. Under the H. which enhances the coding gain obtainable in the quantization process. we can reasonably expect the H.264 standard. Although the use of variable block sizes improves prediction capability. it also increases the complexity of its codec computations. Although the H. Quantization Parameters Perhaps the most important factor in a multimedia compression speciﬁcation is the coding gain obtained due to quantization.264 standard supports a wide range of network operations from ADSL to cable television. As the processing power of chips increases. .
This section will focus on the TCP/IP protocol suite. The ﬁrst type of video. video iPod. we will then examine the network and common transport layer headers included in the protocol suite.1 The TCP/IP Protocol Suite When we discuss the TCP/IP protocol suite and IPTV it is important to note that there are two types of video that can be delivered through the use of the TCP/IP protocol suite. Those types of video can be categorized as realtime and stored for replay. First.Chapter 4 The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV The purpose of this chapter is twofold. or other device does not require the use of a jitter buffer. we will use our knowledge of the protocol suite to obtain an understanding of the manner by which video can be transported in a TCP/IP environment. In comparison. video that will be stored and later viewed on a PC. Once this is accomplished. requires the use of a jitter buffer to smooth out delay variations experienced by packets as they ﬂow through an IP network. Commencing with a review of the architecture of the TCP/IP protocol suite and its comparison to the well-known seven-layer reference model. real-time. 85 . we will review the major characteristics of the TCP/IP protocol suite. 4.
Figure 4. are a single application layer in the TCP/IP protocol suite. the destination port number indicates the application because a receiving device will “listen” on predeﬁned port numbers to support one or more predeﬁned applications associated with certain port numbers. the TCP/IP protocol suite deﬁnes a series of address resolution protocols (ARPs) that enable the network layer’s addressing to be adapted to operate on the Media Access Control layer (MAC layer) supported by a particular LAN. . the source port is normally set to either a value of 0 or a randomly selected value.1 illustrates the ﬁve layers of the TCP/IP protocol suite during the formation of a LAN frame as well as the relationship between the layers in the ISO reference model and the TCP/IP protocol suite.1 TCP/IP encapsulated in a LAN header. Both TCP and UDP headers include a source and destination numeric port number identiﬁer. typically either a TCP (Transmission Control Protocol) or UDP (User Datagram Protocol) header. In addition. In actuality. As a LAN frame is formed in the TCP/IP protocol suite. Figure 4. note that the TCP/IP protocol suite does not deﬁne a physical layer (layer 1).1. a transport layer header. is preﬁxed to application data. presentation. In examining Figure 4. layers 5 through 7. In comparison. but it predates that model and consists of ﬁve layers. which indicates the type of application data being transported. which represent the session.86 Understanding IPTV Overview The TCP/IP protocol suite represents a layered protocol similar to the International Standards Organization (ISO) Open System Interconnection (OSI) seven-layer reference model. Instead. and application layers in the ISO reference model.
sequencing of packets.1. as more subscribers select this service. the . whereas the data link layer can be a form of Ethernet or another type of network. Because early trials of IPTV had more than enough bandwidth devoted to the video streams. Both the formation of TCP segments and UDP datagrams occur at the transport layer of the TCP/IP protocol suite. However. Because data ﬂows through routers. we come to the transport layer. the IP header denotes the sending and receiving interfaces through the use of source and destination address ﬁelds.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 87 Segments and Datagrams Several terms are used to reference headers preﬁxed onto application data units. But UDP can be considered an unreliable protocol that depends on the upper-layer application for error detection and correction. As we probe deeper into the relevant ﬁelds of the protocol headers that must be considered when transporting video through ﬁrewalls and routes. it is not suitable for digitized voice and data. and other actions that developers may elect to add to the application. which identify the application being transported through the use of destination port numbers. Moving up the protocol stack. Although many traditional Internet applications use TCP for the transport layer protocol. In comparison. this layer is sometimes referred to as the routing layer. the preﬁx of a TCP header to an application data unit is referred to as a TCP segment. the physical and data link layers are responsible for transporting raw data in the form of binary 1s and 0s. the probability of packets becoming lost was virtually zero. or a wireless link. when TCP is used. The physical layer can be twisted-pair. First. When an IP header is preﬁxed to a TCP segment or UDP datagram. Thus. which causes latency that adversely affects realtime applications. That delivery can be reliable. ﬁber. The network layer is responsible for delivering data to its destination over one or more router “hops” based on the destination IP address in the IP header. both an IP header as well as a TCP or UDP header are required to identify both the type of data transported by an IP datagram and the originator and receiver of the datagram. which represents layer 4 in the ISO reference model. Thus. the preﬁx of a UDP header to an application data unit results in the formation of a UDP datagram. or unreliable and possibly out of sequence when UDP is used. In comparison to TCP and UDP headers. we will note some of the well-known ﬁeld assignments. the result is an IP datagram. Returning our attention to Figure 4. which is responsible for the delivery of packets. IPTV primarily uses UDP at the transport layer. As indicated in Figure 4. this action occurs at layer 3 in the ISO reference model. This is because TCP corrects for lost packets and transmission errors by retransmission. in sequence.1.
2. Thus. an IP datagram is formed. This means that an ICMP message is preﬁxed with an IP header.1. Through the preﬁx of an IP header. Thus. ICMP messages convey error and control information such that they represent an integral part of the TCP/IP protocol suite. The IP Figure 4. ICMP is used to generate the well-known and frequently used echo request and echo reply messages that are collectively better known as ping messages. we will note how encapsulation of data through a sequence of headers is used to control the ﬂow of video. in the future UDP will more than likely be used in conjunction with the Real-Time Transport Protocol (RTP). In addition. Both raw UDP and RTP will be discussed later in this chapter. Both routers and hosts use ICMP to transmit reports concerning received datagrams back to the originator.2 An ICMP message is transported by the preﬁx of an IP header to the message. it is similar to the physical layer in that both are not deﬁned in the TCP/IP protocol suite. The Network Layer Because the data link layer represents a transport facility on a LAN or serial communications on a WAN. ICMP Messages Although not shown in Figure 4. the transport of an Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) message warrants mention. which provides time stamping and sequencing. we will commence our investigation of the operation of the TCP/IP protocol suite at the network layer. . although what is referred to as “raw UDP” is sufﬁcient for delivering video today. ICMP messages are transported as an IP datagram.88 Understanding IPTV probability of packets being dropped by routers can be expected to increase. as shown in Figure 4. resulting in the encapsulation of an ICMP message within an IP datagram. As we probe deeper into the use of the TCP/IP protocol suite to convey video.
3 The IPv4 header. Note that this header consists of 12 ﬁelds plus optional options and padding ﬁelds. We will also focus on IP addressing and the subnet mask because several methods based on addressing can be used to deliver video over an IP network. Because IPv4 is currently used by more than 95 percent of all TCP/IP users. Those are the identiﬁcation. in a video operating environment. and routers between the source and destination to agree on the format of the datagram. the time-to-live ﬁeld. recipient. header includes a series of ﬁelds that controls the delivery of data. and fragment offset ﬁelds. we will focus our attention on the IPv4 header even though the more modern IPv6 header is considered to represent a replacement for the prior network layer protocol. ﬂags. . but also enables the originator. the value of the version ﬁeld is binary 0100 or decimal 4. we will limit our discussion of the header ﬁelds to the delivery of video.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 89 Figure 4. Thus. Although all of the ﬁelds in the IPv4 header are important. Fragment Control Fields Previously we noted that three ﬁelds in the IP header control fragmentation. ﬂags. and fragment offset). The ﬁrst ﬁeld in the header is a 4-bit version ﬁeld. The IPv4 Header The IPv4 header is illustrated in Figure 4. Those ﬁelds include three that provide fragmentation control (identiﬁcation. For IPv4.3. the protocol ﬁeld. and the source and destination address ﬁelds. we need to concentrate on several IP header ﬁelds. This ﬁeld not only speciﬁes the version of the IP in use.
the value of the TTL ﬁeld is decremented by 1 as the datagram reaches a router.” The third ﬁeld associated with fragmentation is the 13-bit fragment offset ﬁeld. Time-to-Live Field The original intention of the time-to-live (TTL) ﬁeld was to specify how long. Because it is extremely difﬁcult to time synchronize all routers. When the value of the TTL ﬁeld reaches 0. the protocol ﬁeld will have a value of 6 when it transports TCP. .90 Understanding IPTV The 16-bit identiﬁcation ﬁeld contains a unique number that serves to identify the datagram. The value of this ﬁeld is speciﬁed in units of 8 bytes. The ﬁrst bit setting is used to denote if a datagram can be fragmented. a datagram could remain on the Internet. Because setting this bit to binary 1 indicates that the datagram should not be fragmented. Thus. Similarly. The next ﬁeld in the IP header that is associated with fragmentation is the ﬂags ﬁeld. That is. When a datagram is fragmented. The two low-ordered bits in this 3-bit ﬁeld are used to control fragmentation. Now that we understand the use of the three ﬁelds of the IP header associated with fragmentation. the receiving device will reassemble the fragments based on the identiﬁcation and source IP address ﬁeld values because the contents of both ﬁelds uniquely identify a sequence of fragments generated by a common source. At the destination. the protocol ﬁeld will have a value of 1 when IP transports an ICMP message as an IP datagram.” The low-ordered bit in the ﬂags ﬁeld indicates whether the fragment is the last one or if more fragments follow. whereas a value of 17 would indicate it is transporting UDP. Thus. The purpose of this ﬁeld is to denote the offset of the fragment from the original datagram. with the initial value being 0. in seconds. Protocol Field The purpose of the 8-bit protocol ﬁeld is to identify the higher-layer protocol that is transported by the IP header as a datagram. this bit is referred to as the “do not fragment bit. to indicate the ﬁrst fragment of a datagram. the TTL ﬁeld provides a mechanism to prevent a datagram from continuously ﬂowing over the Internet due to a variety of erroneous conditions. this bit is referred to as the “more fragments bit. the TTL ﬁeld is used to denote the number of router hops a datagram can traverse. let’s move on and discuss the TTL ﬁeld. each fragment is preﬁxed with an IP header that has the same number in the identiﬁcation ﬁeld. For example. the datagram is sent to the great bit bucket in the sky.
note that a Class A address is identiﬁed by a binary 0 in its ﬁrst bit position. Figure 4. where source trafﬁc is transmitted to multiple receivers as a bandwidth conservation method. and C addresses are subdivided into network and host address portions and are collectively referred to as classful IPv4 addresses. a Class B address is identiﬁed by a binary 1 followed by a binary 0 in its second bit position. this reduces the number of Class A networks to a maximum of 127. As we move from a Class A network address to a Class B and then a Class C address. Class A.0. B. the network portion of the address increases while the host portion of the address decreases. Class D addresses represent multicast addresses. the ﬁrst three bits in a Class D address are set to indicate that the address represents a multicast address. In examining Figure 4. The ﬁfth type of IPv4 address is a Class E address. Because the protocol ﬁeld in the IP header is an 8-bit byte.0 through 239. However. Because the ﬁrst bit in a Class A network is set to a binary 0. Thus. Source and Destination IP Address Fields Both the source and destination IP address ﬁelds are 32 bits in length under IPv4.1 lists seven examples of the assignment of IP numbers.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 91 Table 4. Those IP addresses are further broken down into ﬁve classes. . this enables 256 (0 through 255) protocols to be assigned. a Class A address has the smallest number of deﬁnable networks but the largest number of deﬁnable hosts. which is used for experimental purposes. referred to as Class A through Class E.4 illustrates the three classful IPv4 address formats. Similarly.1 Examples of IPv4 Protocol Field Assigned Values Decimal Value Keyword Protocol Deﬁned 1 6 8 17 41 46 58 ICMP TCP EGP UDP IPv6 RSVP IPv6 = ICMP Internet Control Message Protocol Transmission Control Protocol Exterior Gateway Protocol User Datagram Protocol IPv6 Resource Reservation Protocol ICMP for IPv6 Table 4.255. Class D addresses used for multicast fall into the address block 224.255. and a Class C address is identiﬁed by the bit sequence 110 in its ﬁrst three bit positions.0. Thus.4.255. whereas a Class C address has the largest number of deﬁnable networks but the smallest number of deﬁnable hosts.
further reducing available Class A network addresses to a maximum of 126. the general structure of a Class B address becomes (N) (N) (H) (H) Similarly.92 Understanding IPTV Figure 4. the 127. the general structure of a Class C address becomes (N) (N) (N) (H) Due to a signiﬁcant increase in the number of devices being connected to the Internet. classful addresses have become a rare and valuable resource.4 Classful IPv4 address formats. Thus.0. each successive classful address byte increases the number of hosts that can be deﬁned on a network while decreasing the number of unique networks that can be deﬁned.0. Although such techniques as network address translation (NAT) .0 address represents the well-known loopback address. we can note the general structure of a Class A address as follows: (N) (H) (H) (H) As previously noted. General Classful Address Structure Using N to represent a network byte and H to represent a host byte.
let’s turn our attention to these topics. Without subnetting. Figure 4.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 93 and the use of private IP addresses behind a NAT device have extended the useful life of IPv4. the maximum number of distinct hosts that can be supported on a Class C network address is reduced by 2 to 254. Subnetting Subnetting represents the process of subdividing a classful IPv4 address into two or more separate entities. the process of subnetting has allowed organizations to considerably conserve on the use of IP addresses. consider an organization that has two LANs — one with 15 workstations used by accountants and one with 20 workstations used by engineers. The key to the ability to assign a common IP address to multiple networks is the process of subnetting and the use of the subnet mask. the organization would use two Class C addresses. for the previously mentioned organization with two LANs. because a host address of 0 could be confused with the basic network address and a host address of 255 is reserved as a broadcast address (hexFF or all 1s is 255). each permitting 256 unique hosts (0 through 255) to be identiﬁed. Thus.5 The subnetting process converts a two-level address into a three-level address. Thus. with the network portion of the address remaining as is. further extending the useful life of IPv4. which could be used to support up to 254 additional workstations. However.5 illustrates the Figure 4. This in turn would save one Class C address. Thus. . The subnetting process results in the subdivision of the host portion of a classful IPv4 address into a subnet portion and a host portion. subnetting has no effect on routing on the Internet because the network portion of the address is not modiﬁed. the use of a single Class C address would accommodate the 35 workstations of the two LANs. For example.
01001110 .01000000. let’s focus our attention on how that one Class C address can be subnetted. 78. we can have up to 2 6 – 2.01001110.6 An example of the relationships among the Class C network address of 198. or 62.11xxxxxx Figure 4.00xxxxxx Subnet 1 11000000. Thus.0. four subnets. Because a subnet is similar to a classful network address in that it cannot have a host address of all 0s or all 1s. we need two bits for the subnet. distinct hosts on each subnet. which is formed by a sequence of binary 1s to extend . In examining Figure 4.6. Thus.01000000. which would eliminate the need for three additional Class C addresses. which is more than sufﬁcient for each LAN.5 it is obvious that as the number of subnets increases the number of hosts that can reside on each subnet decreases.01000000.6. and host portions of the Class C address would appear as illustrated in Figure 4. Because there are four LANs. From Figure 4.01000000. The Subnet Mask Although the process of subnetting a classful IPv4 address is relatively straightforward.01xxxxxx Subnet 2 11000000. The answer to this question is the use of the subnet mask. which converts a two-level classful address into a threelevel address. Assuming the Class C IP address provided to the organization is 198. then the relationships among the network address. 64.0. reducing the number of bits used to represent a host on each subnet to 6 (8 – 2). this reduces the number of hosts on each subnet to 26 – 2. As an example of the use of subnetting. subnetting process.94 Understanding IPTV Network 198.01001110. with a maximum of 25 hosts on any network. 0 Subnet 0 11000000.78.64.78.01001110. note that the host portion of each subnet is represented by six bit positions indicated by Xs. subnet. resulting in 64 distinct values that range from 000000 to 111111.64. Let’s further assume that your organization can obtain only a single Class C address. and the host portion of each subnet. or 62. an unanswered question concerns how one determines the subnet within an address. let’s assume an organization has four LANs located in a building.10xxxxxx Subnet 3 11000000.
the subnet mask required to have a two-position subnet becomes: 11111111.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 95 the network portion of a classful address through the subnet series of bits. Examining the subnet mask.0. This enables the router to examine the ﬁrst two bits in the host portion of the address to determine the subnet onto which the datagram should be routed. The receipt of a datagram with the network address 198. Because ICMP messages are used to perform a variety of functions ranging from providing the foundation for the well-known ping test to determining the subnet mask.192. by examining the destination address in the IP datagram in conjunction with the subnet mask. the router notes that it has 26 set 1 bits. a logical follow-up is to move up the TCP/IP protocol stack to the transport layer. let’s turn our attention to this topic. Thus. This indicates that the address is a Class C address and tells the router that the network portion of the address is contained in the ﬁrst 24 bits or 3 bytes. it is also true that preventing all ICMP messages from ﬂowing through routers and ﬁrewalls can result in lost productivity. this also indicates the initial subdivision of the addr ess between its network portion and its host portion. For example. the subtraction of the number of bits in the network portion of the address from the number of 1s in the subnet mask indicates the number of bit positions in the subnet. First. the router obtains the ability to transfer the datagram onto the correct subnet.0 by a router to which the previously mentioned LANs are connected initiates a series of steps to ensure trafﬁc ﬂows to the correct subnet. we need to turn our attention to a special type of IP datagram that we brieﬂy discussed previously in this chapter. the router examines the ﬁrst byte of the network address. Understanding ICMP Messages Although it is true that some ICMP messages can be used to exploit network defenses. Because the ﬁrst few bits in a classful IPv4 address identify the address type. the router determines that the subnet is 2 bits in length.11111111. That IP datagram consists of an IP header used to transport an ICMP message.255.78. prior to doing so.78. Then. However.11000000 In dotted decimal notation the subnet mask would be entered as 255. Now that we understand the use of the IP header. In this . Then. Thus. consider the previous example in which the network address was 198. noting that the ﬁrst two bits in the byte are set.11111111. By subtracting the number of bits in the network address (24) from the length of the set bits in the subnet mask (26).64.255.64. it is important to obtain an appreciation of the capability of ICMP messages.
A host or router will transmit an echo request to a distant device. That device. which may provide additional information about a particular message type. This review will make us aware of the beneﬁts associated with ICMP messages as well as provide us with a better understanding as to why we may wish to allow certain messages to ﬂow through routers and ﬁrewalls. The reason the destination was unreachable is . Destination Unreachable An ICMP message with a type ﬁeld value of 3 represents a destination unreachable message. Concerning the latter.96 Understanding IPTV Table 4. and a 16-bit checksum ﬁeld.2 lists 13 actively used ICMP messages and their type ﬁeld values. The three ﬁelds common to each ICMP message include an 8-bit type ﬁeld. which deﬁnes the ICMP message. Echo Request and Echo Reply The ICMP echo request (type 8) and echo reply (type 0) messages are used to test if a destination is active and reachable. Both echo request and echo reply messages are used by the well-known ping application. if both reachable and active. will respond with an echo reply. which is used to provide integrity for the message.2 ICMP Type Field Values Type Field Value Deﬁned ICMP Message Type 0 3 4 5 8 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 Echo reply Destination unreachable Source quench Redirect Echo request Time exceeded Parameter problem Time-stamp request Time-stamp reply Information request Information reply Address mask request Address mask reply section we review the operation of 13 actively used ICMP messages. each ICMP message commences with the use of three common ﬁelds. with the remaining ﬁelds in a particular message structured based on the speciﬁc message. Table 4. an 8-bit code ﬁeld. In the following paragraphs we will discuss the use of ICMP messages.
That is. routers and hosts will transmit one source quench message for every datagram they discard. Sometimes a bit of coordination with security personnel can result in the unblocking of one or more ICMP messages.3 lists the code ﬁeld deﬁned values and their meanings for a destination unreachable message. Typically. Table 4. the packet arrival rate from two domains destined to the third may exceed the packet processing rate of the router.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 97 Table 4. Source Quench An ICMP message type of 4 represents a source quench message. To understand the use of source quench. This explains how packets can be lost. many organizations conﬁgure their routers and ﬁrewalls to block all or most ICMP messages. which will enable you to obtain the results you seek from the use of such messages. assume a router connects two large domains on the Internet to a third. When this situation occurs. At various times throughout the day. the device discards them. The router then is forced to discard or drop packets.3 Destination Unreachable Code Field Values Code Field Value Meaning 0 1 2 3 4 5 Network unreachable Host unreachable Protocol unreachable Port unreachable Fragmentation needed Source route failed further deﬁned by a numeric entry in the message’s code ﬁeld. The type ﬁeld in the resulting ICMP message identiﬁes the message as a destination unreachable message and the code ﬁeld value deﬁnes why the datagram could not be delivered. This message is used by routers and hosts to control the ﬂow of data. Routers can be conﬁgured to transmit a network or host unreachable message when they cannot route or deliver an IP datagram. note that when datagrams arrive at a device at a rate higher than its processing rate. By default. If this situation occurs it will adversely affect your ability to determine certain conditions by which ICMP messages could explain why datagrams could not reach their destination cannot be determined. . which informs the source to slow down its datagram transmission rate. the device that discards the datagrams transmits an ICMP source quench message.
The information request message is used to obtain an IP address for a network to which a device is attached. When a router detects that it is using a non-optimum route. the ﬁelds within these messages can be used to estimate the transit time of datagrams between two devices. Time-Stamp Request and Reply From Table 4. A router or host that encounters a problem in interpreting the ﬁelds within an IP header will return an ICMP parameter problem message to the source. Parameter Problem An ICMP type ﬁeld value of 12 is used to deﬁne a parameter problem. In addition. whereas a value of 1 denotes that the fragment reassembly time was exceeded. Both messages are used to synchronize the clocks of two devices. another pair of ICMP messages are types 15 and 16. Because many hackers use this message to play havoc with an organization’s network.2. a router will both discard the datagram and transmit an ICMP time exceeded message back to the source when this situation occurs.2 you will note that ICMP message types 13 and 14 represent time-stamp request and time-stamp response messages. Because the time-to-live (TTL) ﬁeld in the IP header is decremented by 1 when a datagram ﬂows through a router and is discarded when the value reaches 0.98 Understanding IPTV Redirect A type ﬁeld value of 5 in an ICMP message denotes a redirect. This message will include a pointer that identiﬁes the byte in the IPv4 header that caused the problem. this ICMP message serves as an alternative to the use of . Information Request and Reply From Table 4. Thus. it is commonly blocked by routers and ﬁrewalls. respectively. A second reason for the transmission of a time exceeded message is when fragment r eassembly time is exceeded. information request and information reply. Time Exceeded The ICMP time exceeded message is generated by a router when it has to discard a datagram. it will transmit an ICMP redirect message to the host. A code ﬁeld value of 0 indicates a time-to-live count value was exceeded.
where the IP header is added to form an IP datagram. As an example of the use of TCP and UDP. connection-oriented protocol that includes a ﬂow control mechanism. That transmission can be either as a broadcast if the device was not previously conﬁgured with the router’s IP address or as a unicast message if it was conﬁgured with the address. the transport layer protocol includes a destination port ﬁeld in which a numeric entry deﬁnes the application data being transported. the transport layer resides above the network layer but below the application layer. Thus. In comparison. TCP vs. The transport layer permits multiple applications to ﬂow to a common destination. UDP is an unreliable. The information reply message functions as a response to the information request. UDP Although the protocol ﬁeld within the IPv4 header is capable of deﬁning 256 transport layer protocols. Once encapsulated. For this . receiving application data. either from the same source IP address or from different source addresses. two protocols account for the vast majority of transport layer activity: TCP and UDP. the TCP segment or UDP datagram is passed to the network layer. which is then encapsulated with a transport header that identiﬁes the application. let us move up the protocol stack and turn our attention to the transport layer. A device ﬁrst transmits an ICMP address mask request to a router. Now that we have an appreciation for ICMP messages as well as the ﬁelds within the IP header. This pair of ICMP messages enables a device to learn its subnet mask. we can consider Voice-over-IP (VoIP). Address Mask Request and Reply The last two type ﬁeld values listed in Table 4. The Transport Layer In our prior examination of the ﬁelds within the IP header.2 represent an address mask request (17) and an address mask reply (18) message. we noted that the 8-bit protocol ﬁeld deﬁnes the transport layer protocol header that follows the IP header. To accomplish this task. TCP is a reliable.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 99 a reverse ARP. For either situation the router will respond with the address mask in an ICMP address mask reply message. best-effort protocol that depends on the application layer to add such functions as error detection and correction and ﬂow control.
Included in the header are source and destination port ﬁelds.100 Understanding IPTV application. reliable protocol. connectionless protocol. The sequence number ﬁeld enables datagrams received out of order to be correctly sequenced. UDP. say.7 illustrates the ﬁelds within the TCP header. a response from the destination is required and the dialed digits arrive error free. which is an unreliable. . The UDP Header Previously we noted that the UDP protocol represents a best-effort transport protocol that depends on the application layer for such functions as Figure 4. Because TCP is a connection-oriented. with the destination ﬁeld used to deﬁne the application being transported. TCP would be used to transport the dialed number and UDP would be used to transport digitized voice as a sequence of small periods of digitized data. we will limit our discussion of TCP and UDP headers primarily to their source and destination port ﬁelds. For the purpose of this book. In comparison.7 The TCP header. The TCP Header Figure 4. and other ﬁelds in the header perform ﬂow control (window and acknowledgement) and data integrity (checksum). allows digital voice to ﬂow to its destination and small snippets of. 20 ms of voice can be lost without adversely af fecting the reconstructed conversation at the destination. let’s examine the headers of each. Now that we have an appreciation for the difference between these two popular transport layer protocols. which is focused on IPTV.
Later. which are common in both headers. the source and destination ﬁelds are each 16 bits in length.8. Because there are three types of port numbers that can be used in the TCP and UDP port ﬁelds. as you might expect. let’s turn our attention to those two ﬁelds. enabling port numbers to range . Source and Destination Port Fields For both TCP and UDP. Similar to the TCP header. ﬂow control and error detection and correction.8 illustrates the ﬁelds in the TCP header. the UDP header is streamlined in comparison to the TCP header. Port Numbers Both TCP and UDP headers. let’s examine port numbers in more detail. most source port ﬁeld values are either set to 0 if the source port is not used or represent a random number generated by the originator. the destination port ﬁeld contains a value that identiﬁes a user process or application for the receiving station whose IP address is denoted by the destination IP address ﬁeld value in the IP header. For example. The source port ﬁeld number is supposed to denote the application associated with the data generated by the originating station. when a station initiates an HTTP session. Thus. the HTTP session could be followed by a Telnet session. as illustrated in Figures 4. contain 16-bit source and destination port ﬁelds. In comparison. the use of the port ﬁeld enables multiple applications to ﬂow to a common destination.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 101 Figure 4. However. the UDP header includes 16-bit source and destination ports that identify the process or application being transported. it would place port number 80 in the destination port ﬁeld.8 The UDP header. with the originating station placing port number 23 in the destination port ﬁeld. Thus. Because a pair of origination and destination address data ﬂows can occur on multiple destination port numbers. Figure 4.7 and 4.
That is. For example. resulting in port number values from 1024 to 49151 allocated for registered ports.102 Understanding IPTV in value from 0 to 65535. Dynamic Ports Dynamic ports begin where registered ports end. Well-Known Ports Well-known ports are also referred to as assigned ports because their assignment is controlled by the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA). it becomes a relatively easy task to both adjust a router access list or ﬁrewall conﬁguration to enable the ﬂow of datagrams used by the new application as well as purchase and use other vendor products that perform a similar function through the use of the same registered port. such as ﬁle transfers (FTP) and remote access (Telnet). registered ports. resulting in their use of ports 49152 through 65535.4 provides a few examples of well-known and registered port numbers. Ports used by TCP typically provide connections that transport relatively long-term connections requiring error detection and correction. However. Table 4. To alleviate this potential problem. which are subdivided into three ranges referred to as well-known ports. Although a vendor can register an application or process with the IANA and obtain a port number for the use of the process or application. and dynamic or private ports. A second common use of dynamic port numbers is for NAT. Port numbers in this range are commonly used by vendors implementing proprietary network applications. Well-known or assigned ports are in the range of 0 to 1023. the registration does not carry the weight of law. Such ports are used to indicate the transportation of standardized process and for the most part have the same assignments for both TCP and UDP. the IANA allows vendors to register their use of port numbers. providing 1024 possible assignments. doing so in a haphazard manner could result in incompatibilities between vendor products. Although some services and applications may be familiar to . which we will discuss in the next section because it can adversely affect certain IPTV operations. registered ports primarily allow other vendors to develop compatible products and end users can conﬁgure equipment to use such products. when a new application uses a registered port number. This results in a “universe” of 65536 port numbers. Registered Ports Port numbers beyond 1023 can be used by any process or application.
. because large ﬁles. it makes more efﬁcient use of bandwidth. are broken into smaller pieces. A central server. In addition. the use of Bit Torrent enhances the availability of popular ﬁles. instead of an “all or nothing” approach to downloading. coordinates the actions of peers. such as videos.323 host call MSN Messenger Yahoo Messenger: voice chat Yahoo Messenger Yahoo Messenger: Web cams AOL Instant Messenger Bit Torrent RTP-QT4 (Apple QuickTime) RTP TCP TCP and UDP TCP TCP TCP TCP TCP TCP and UDP UDP TCP TCP TCP TCP and UDP TCP and UDP 5 7 17 20 21 23 25 53 69 79 80 443 548 1214 TCP TCP and UDP TCP and UDP TCP TCP and UDP TCP TCP TCP TCP and UDP UDP UDP 1352 1677 1720 1863 5100–5001 5050 5100 5190 6881–6889. referred to as a tracker.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 103 Table 4. a few deserve a bit of explanation. Because Bit Torrent enables uploads and downloads to occur simultaneously. 6969 6970–6999 16384–32767 readers.4 Examples of Well-Known and Registered TCP and UDP Services and Port Utilization Service Port Type Port Number Well-Known Ports Remote job entry Echo Quote of the day File transfer (data) File transfer (control) Telnet Simple Mail Transfer Protocol Domain Name Server Trivial File Transfer Protocol Finger Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure HTTP AppleTalk Filing Protocol Kazaa Registered Ports Lotus Notes Novell Group Wise H. Bit Torrent represents an application and peer-to-peer File Transfer Protocol (FTP) that sends portions of ﬁles from one client to another.
which provides end-toend network transport functions suitable for applications transmitting realtime data. havoc would result. Instead of assigning each workstation a scarce IPv4 public address. over multicast and unicast network services.255. Those address blocks. are also deﬁned in RFC 1918. using an address translator. without a technique to differentiate one translation from another.0. Because only a portion of an organization’s workstations might require access to the Internet at a particular period of time.16.255 192. Next.104 Understanding IPTV a ﬁle may be split into hundreds of pieces that can be obtained from many sites. the ability of organizations to obtain IPv4 addresses became more difﬁcult.168. it became possible to conserve IP addresses. the use of a classful IP address could result in wasting many host addresses on a network. Then.0. to ensure each translation is unique. which are listed in Table 4. your organization would translate RFC 1918 addresses to a single public IP address.255. Obviously. Network Address Translation Network address translation (NAT) was originally developed as a tool to extend the life of scarce IPv4 addresses.255 172. the address translator converts the Class C public address in the IP header’s destination IP address ﬁeld to the Table 4.0–10.255.31.5 RFC 1918 Reserved IPv4 Addresses Address Blocks 10. noting the RFC 1918 address associated with the port number. you could use ﬁve private IP Class C network addresses from Table 4. By combining an address translator to map or translate unregistered. the address translator uses or assigns a high port number to the source port in the TCP or UDP header and enters the RFC 1918 IP address and the port number into a table. Then.0.0–192. A second protocol worth noting is the RTP. For example. the address translator notes the port number returned in the header and uses that number to perform a table lookup. Thus.0–172. each with 200 workstations.5.0. suppose your organization has ﬁve LANs.255.5. such as audio and video.255 . Recognition of the fact that some organizations would not directly connect their workstations to the Internet resulted in three address blocks being reserved for private Internet use. private IPv4 addresses into a registered address. As the use of the Internet expanded. when a response occurs.168.
which precludes real-time viewing. with the outer IP header operated on by NAT.2 Delivering IPTV Now that we have an appreciation for the TCP/IP protocol suite. because doing so would result in routing problems on each network. Because the ﬁle transfer of video. This type of translation is referred to as port-address translation and is performed by many routers and ﬁrewalls. Delivery Methods There are three basic methods by which video can be delivered via an IP network. this section will also explore its use. Because the MPEG-2 standard is the most common method used for the delivery of video over an IP network. and video on demand (VOD). Thus. we will focus our attention primarily on this topic. concert. we will turn our attention to the delivery of video via that protocol suite. because the RTP is essential for the delivery of video. I will simply state that the transfer can occur via FTP or through the use of the previously described Bit Torrent application. In this section we will ﬁrst discuss the two major delivery methods used by IPTV. or other type of visual performance. This means that you could not interconnect two networks that use the same RFC 1918 private network addresses. Broadcast When video is broadcast. Although NAT can considerably economize on the use of scarce IPv4 addresses. Those methods include delivery as a ﬁle transfer. Instead. it can create problems when some type of tunneling is employed and the inner IP datagram remains as is. each feed is provided a unique channel number to enable a set-top box to select the feed the person controlling the box . The latter two methods are used for the real-time viewing of a movie. although representing a transfer of data over an IP network. you would need to change the network address on one of the interconnected networks. This will be followed by a discussion of the different standards used to encode and deliver video. is used for playback and not immediate viewing.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 105 recently obtained RFC 1918 address and forwards the datagram to the private IP network. 4. In addition. in the remainder of this section we will focus our attention on the use of broadcast and video-on-demand technologies to provide an IPTV capability. broadcast. television show.
. The top portion of Figure 4.9 IPTV can be delivered via broadcast and unicast video-on-demand (VOD) transmission. The broadcast source can be movies previously stored on a server as well as a live feed from an on-air television station showing the Summer Olympic basketball ﬁnals. In addition to billing subscribers.106 Understanding IPTV Figure 4. (STB. or another show. a soap opera. eliminating the need for all digitized channels to ﬂow into the subscriber’s home.9 illustrates the delivery of video via the broadcasting of channels. which packetizes the video stream. Because billing for services represents an important aspect of any IPTV operation. when a person uses the set-top box to select a channel the box will establish a multicast connection to the broadcasted channel. Each source is input into a broadcast encoder. a subscriber management system is used to perform that function. as they now do when cable TV is used. set-top box) wishes to view. such as providing selected content to subscribers as a VOD product. In actuality. The broadcast system can be thought of as a series of media servers that host a number of broadcast streams. the subscriber management system will normally provide such additional functions as broadcasting an electronic programming guide and supporting interactive set-top box features. including setting a channel number and multicast address group to which set-top boxes will join whenever a viewer selects a channel using the box. The media servers support the delivery of both multicast and unicast. with the latter used for VOD operations.
from slow-speed dialup to high-bandwidth ﬁber-to-the-home connections. Philips. In fact.264 standard and is equivalent to the MPEG-4 part 16 standard.9 illustrates the integration of VOD into an IPTV communications system. Although both MPEG-4 and H. Because VOD responds to a query generated by a subscriber through the set-top box or PC. Video Delivery Standards Several standards can be used for providing an IPTV video delivery system. the subscriber management station will display a list of VOD events from which a subscriber can select a program. However. some satellite television systems. the response ﬂows as a sequence of unicast datagrams to the IP address of the set-top box or personal computer.or H. which can list hundreds of events. MPEG-4 scales to transport media at any data rate. In fact. the ﬂow of IP datagrams will represent a unicast transmission to the subscriber’s set-top box or personal computer. Now that we have an appreciation for commonly used .The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 107 Video on Demand The lower portion of Figure 4.264 provide a considerable enhancement over MPEG-2. IBM. In 2002 Apple Computer added support for MPEG-4 to its QuickTime technology and worked with such leading vendors as Cisco. For either method. they are much more computing intensive. MPEG-4 is designed to deliver DVD-quality video similar to MPEG-2 but at lower data rates.264compatible devices can be a difﬁcult task. The international version of MPEG-4 is better known as the H. can be more readily served with this newer technology. have adopted MPEG-4 for the delivery of digital television due to its picture quality at lower data rates. enabling more channels to be delivered within the frequency spectrum they are authorized to use. Sun Microsystems. The two most popular standards are MPEG-1 and MPEG-2. which was ﬁnalized in 1998 and became an international standard in 2000. In comparison. it’s also possible for an IPTV operator to insert a card with the subscriber’s monthly bill. with the latter representing a modiﬁcation to the earlier standard that is commonly used in cable TV set-top boxes due to its enhanced data compression capability. and an access code to retrieve selected events. and 20 other companies to form the Internet Streaming Media Alliance (ISMA) to ensure that an MPEG-4 media stream created with one vendor’s product will run on another vendor’s player. This means that for existing cable providers that have a large installed base of MPEG-2 set-top boxes. their viewing cost. Typically. whose customers are just receiving new set-top boxes or will use Pentium 4 or dual-core-based PCs to view video. such as Direct TV. newly emerging IPTV providers. the upgrade to MPEG-4. A newer MPEG standard is MPEG-4.
When this situation occurs. including Sender changed Missing synchronization bytes Incorrect packet size Time-outs Excessive jitter Improper UDP bit rate Figure 4. it is important to note that video can also be transported directly in UDP packets without the use of RTP. . several error and informational conditions can be detected. UDP/RAW and UDP/RTP Although Figure 4. When UDP/RAW is used. UDP can optionally use the RTP to provide applicationlevel framing that identiﬁes the payload being transported and provides a sequence number for each RTP data packet. let’s turn our attention to the manner by which video is delivered when MPEG-2 is used as the compression scheme. Using MPEG-2 One of the most popular methods used to deliver IPTV is through the encapsulation of MPEG-2 using UDP at the transport layer. When this encapsulation occurs. the transport stream is referred to as UDP/RAW.10 illustrates the use of RTP for transporting MPEG-2based IPTV.108 Understanding IPTV video delivery standards. which allows packet loss to be detected.10 Delivering MPEG-2 via IP.
or approximately 5. This allows detection of several additional error conditions beyond those detectable when UDP/RAW is used. The IP. the overhead at the network layer becomes 28/1316. Then we will investigate the protocol in detail. the overhead at the network layer is 40/1316. Figure 4. When UDP/RAW within an IP datagram ﬂows on an Ethernet network. because the next received frame may or may not be considerably different from the repeated frame. the resulting overhead . the resulting overhead becomes 70/1316.1 percent. If the IP datagram ﬂows on an Ethernet network that has a 26-byte header and 4-byte trailer.10. and RTP headers result in 40 bytes of overhead while 1316 bytes of video are transported via MPEG-2. or approximately 2. Thus. These newly detectable error conditions using UDP/RTP include Determining packets received out of order Detecting duplicate packets Determining if a packet is lost Determining packets that have an incorrect size Although both UDP/RAW and UDP/RTP can be used to transport video.3 percent.10. packets can be time stamped and identiﬁed through the use of a sequence number. Depending on the software used by a receiver. or duplicate packets. during which time the screen will appear blank or repeat the previously received frame. note the overhead of the protocol at the network layer. UDP. packets of incorrect size.10 illustrates the encapsulation process that enables MPEG-2 video to be delivered via IP datagrams. the latter provides the ability to compensate for such error conditions as packets being received out of order. With the 12 bytes of the RTP header eliminated. or approximately 3 percent. it also allows a receiver to compensate for the occurrence of lost packets. First we will examine the overhead associated with the use of this protocol. let’s turn our attention to this protocol. In addition. Concerning the latter. RTP Overhead In examining the encapsulation of an MPEG-2 data stream. it may do nothing. as shown in Figure 4. the RTP header is eliminated. Because RTP is an integral part of the delivery process that enables lost packets transporting video to be reconstructed. A time stamp enables a receiver to perform synchronization as well as to resolve jitter due to delays a packet experiences as it ﬂow through a network.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 109 When RTP is used with UDP. the result could be either a smooth or jerky transition. because UDP/RTP enables a receiver to determine if a packet is lost. When UDP/RAW is used. as shown in Figure 4.
The Real-Time Transport Protocol (RTP) RTP is identiﬁed in the UDP header with a value of 5004 in the port ﬁeld. RTP version 1 is currently limited to legacy operations. it does not address the reservation of resources nor does it guarantee quality of service (QoS) for real-time data.11 illustrates the RPT version 2 header.0 2. and all modern applications are written for version 2. Note that for both the network and data link layers the difference in overhead between UDP/RTP and UDP/RAW is less than 1 percent. which is not backward compatible with version 1. Table 4. the addition of RTP to the protocol stack does not result in an excessive amount of overhead. Now that we have an appreciation for the overhead resulting from the use of RTP. .4 percent. or approximately 4.1 5.3 4.110 Understanding IPTV Table 4. As previously mentioned. Version (Ver) Field The ﬁrst two bits in the header represent the version ﬁeld. The RTP version 2 header consists of ten ﬁelds. this ﬁeld is always set to binary 10 or decimal 2. it is incumbent on network operators to conﬁgure routing queues to prioritize predeﬁned trafﬁc to enable real-time video to reach its destination with minimal delay. and simulation data via multicast or unicast network services. video. Although RTP provides sequencing and time stamping of data. each of which we will brieﬂy discuss.6. RTP provides end-to-end network transport functions that facilitate the delivery of such real-time data as audio. As noted in Table 4.6 Comparing Overhead of UDP/RAW and UDP/RTP Protocol Network Layer Data Link Layer UDP/RTP UDP/RAW 3. For RTP version 2. Thus.4 becomes 58/1316.6 compares the overhead associated with the use of UDP/RAW and UDP/RTP. let’s focus our attention on the protocol itself. The RTP Header Figure 4.
CSRC (CC) Count Field This 4-bit ﬁeld indicates the number of contributing source (CSRC) identiﬁers that follow the ﬁxed header.11 The RTP version 2 header. the value of this ﬁeld is set to 0. Otherwise. This ﬁeld is set to a binary 1 when one or more additional padding bytes that are not part of the payload are added to the packet. the receiver uses this value to determine the number of padding bytes to ignore. The last byte of padding contains a count of the number of padding bytes. is interpreted by a proﬁle. Marker (M) Field This 1-bit ﬁeld. Padding (P) Field The padding ﬁeld is 1 bit in length. For example. Extension (X) Field This 1-bit ﬁeld is set if the ﬁxed header is followed by exactly one header extension. setting this bit enables frame boundaries to be marked in a stream of packets. . when set. Up to 15 contributing sources can be deﬁned.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 111 Figure 4. Thus.
261 video is identiﬁed by a PT ﬁeld value of 31 whereas H.112 Understanding IPTV Payload Type (PT) Field The purpose of this 7-bit ﬁeld is to identify the format of the RTP payload so that it can be correctly interpreted by the application. Thereafter. A mixer is placed .263 video is identiﬁed by a PT ﬁeld value of 34. If they do. Sequence Number Field The 16-bit sequence number ﬁeld has an initial randomly selected value. A mixer is an RTP-level relay device that enables a variety of bandwidths to be used for listening to and/or viewing a common channel. the sequence number can be used to ensure that multi-part video frames are correctly reassembled at the receiver. For video. which explains why a frame that needs to be transported by a series of RTP packets will have the same time-stamp value in each RTP packet header. such as the identiﬁers of all sources mixed together to create an audio packet. using the SSRC identiﬁers of contributing sources. so those packets may have the same time stamp. For example. The value of the time-stamp ﬁeld reﬂects the sampling of the ﬁrst byte in the RTP data packet. The value for this ﬁeld is randomly selected so that two synchronization sources within the same RTP session will have a very low probability of having the same value. Contributing Source (CSRC) Field This 32-bit ﬁeld represents an array of 0 to 15 CSRC elements. CSRC identiﬁers are inserted by mixers. H. the sequence number increments by one for each transmitted RTP data packet. a frame may be split across several RTP packets. Up to 16 CSRC elements can be included and identify the contributing sources for the payload contained in the packet. Synchronization Source (SSRC) Field This 32-bit ﬁeld identiﬁes the synchronization source. Thus. The primary purpose of the sequence number ﬁeld is to detect packet loss. all RTP implementations must be capable of detecting and resolving collisions. Time-Stamp Field The 32-bit time-stamp ﬁeld is used to place audio and video packets in their correct timing order.
As previously noted. RTP data is to be transported on an even UDP port number. if the application transmits every frame at a ﬁxed frame rate. For example. RTCP The Real-Time Transport Control Protocol provides information about the participants in an ongoing session as well as a mechanism to monitor the quality of service. In a video environment. the time stamp depends on the ability of the application to determine the frame number. for example. audio coding used on a high-bandwidth connection to an encoding method more suitable for the lower bandwidth connection. That is. For situations where the frame number cannot be determined. Port Number Utilization Under the RTP speciﬁcation. and it translates. RTCP operates via the periodic transmission of control packets to all members of a session. the time stamp is governed by the frame rate. Because the primary function of RTCP is to provide feedback on the quality of the . Other examples of video mixers include devices that translate video streams from IP/UDP into a different protocol or translate video streams from individual sources without performing resynchronization or mixing. port numbers 5004 and 5005 represent registered ports for applications that elect to use them as the default pair. the time stamp would increase by 3600 per frame. the system clock value will be used to compute the time stamp. whereas Real-Time Transport Control Protocol (RTCP) packets are to be transported on the next-higher odd port number. Time-Stamp Computations For video applications.The TCP/IP Protocol Suite and IPTV 113 near a low-bandwidth area and resynchronizes packets to maintain the spacing generated by the originator. following the same distribution method as that used for data packets. a mixer could be designed to scale the images of individuals in separate video streams into a single composite stream to simulate a group scene. Although applications can use any UDP port pair. the time-stamp value in each header will be the same. at a frame rate of 30 frames per second (fps). when a frame is transmitted as a series of R TP packets. the time stamp would increase by 3000 for each frame. Information about the participants in a session can vary from situations where there is no explicit membership control to sessions that require detailed membership control. whereas at a frame rate of 25 fps.
if not compensated for. where such buffers enable jitter to be removed from packets transporting digitized voice conversations. Without the use of jitter buffers. This random delay represents jitter and. information provided by RTCP can be used to determine where bottlenecks reside when multicasting occurs. Jitter Considerations One of the major problems associated with the real-time delivery of video over an IP network is the displacement of packets transporting frames from their original position. from which they are extracted at applicable times such that their display eliminates movements that would otherwise appear due to the displacement of packets from one another as they ﬂow through a network. however. Assume the packets transporting frames arrive at a receiver one after the other. Those delays can be caused by distance or propagation delay as well as router processing delays. will result in the display of frames appearing awkward. In fact.002 seconds. assume a frame rate of 30 fps.0333) of a second for its display. Perhaps the most popular use of jitter buffers is in VoIP applications. the displacement of packets from their ideal position by time in a sequence of packets would result in some periods of reconstructed voice sounding awkward. A jitter buffer can be thought of as an area of memory used to compensate for delays in the ﬂow of packets through a network. . with a jitter buffer. the frames would ﬁrst ﬂow into the buffer and then be extracted in a time sequence that minimizes the displacement of frames fr om one another. which facilitates the problem resolution process. it functions as an integral part of RTP’s role as a transport protocol.114 Understanding IPTV data distribution. the delay between packets appears random. This means that each packet requires onethirtieth (or . Jitter buffers have been used for many years. This displacement of packets is referred to as jitter and is normally compensated for through the use of a jitter buffer at the receiver. ranging from 0 to 0. For example. However. Packets ﬁrst enter the receiver’s jitter buffer.
Thus. we will discuss a version of digital subscriber lines referred to as VDSL (very-high-bit-rate DSL) that can provide very high bandwidth for relatively short distances and may offer an alternative or supplement to the use of various versions of ASDL. in this chapter we will examine the use of the technology in conjunction with several methods of installing ﬁber cable to central locations where groups of homes and ofﬁces are clustered. we need to expand the last mile to include the home network used to distribute IPTV within a residence. we normally reference the connection between a central ofﬁce and a subscriber. However. In addition. Although we covered the use of different versions of ADSL in detail earlier in this book. the second portion of this chapter will examine home networking methods that can be used to distribute IPTV within a residence. We noted their use in the literal “last mile” to provide communications connectivity from a home or ofﬁce to ﬁber located in the neighborhood or on a direct run to a telephone company central of ﬁce that was in close proximity to the customer. When we discuss last mile solutions. in an IPTV environment. 115 . including ADSL2 and ADSL2+. we will commence our examination by focusing on that topic.Chapter 5 Last Mile Solutions Previously in this book we discussed several variations of ADSL (Assymetrical Digital Subscriber Line). Because understanding VDSL will provide a foundation for discussing alternative last mile solutions.
as the distance increases the obtainable data rate decreases. with the latter more suitable for businesses where the connection of servers or transfer of general data between locations requires bidirectional data rates to be balanced.1 VDSL Transmission Rates and Range Data Rate (Mbps) Downstream/Upstream Transmission Distance Over 26-AWG Copper (ft) 52/30 54/13 26/26 22/13 13/13 10/10 6/6 16/1 1000 1000 3000 3000 4500 4500 6000 6000 . Although the table provides an indication of transmission support over 26-gauge copper wiring. Table 5. Thus. although the transmission distances shown in the referenced table are accurate for 26-AWG twisted-pair wire. usually between 1000 and 4500 feet.1 indicates the data rates supported by VDSL technology running over 26-gauge copper wire.116 Understanding IPTV 5. There are several versions of VDSL. Data Rate Support Table 5. including asymmetric and symmetric. This results in a lower gauge wire diameter increasing. providing support for data rates up to approximately 50 Mbps on a single telephone twisted-pair wire for relatively short distances. According to the American Wire Gauge (AWG) speciﬁcations. which reduces its resistance and enables a greater transmission distance.and 24-gauge wiring.1 VDSL VDSL represents the most powerful member of the xDSL family of products. as the gauge number decreases the diameter of the cable increases. telephone companies also use 22. it is possible for some locations that were installed using a lower gauge twisted-pair wire to achieve slightly longer transmission distances. As you will note from examining the entries in the table.
VDSL uses the frequencies beyond those used for telephone service on the same twisted wire pair. transmission can occur simultaneously in both directions. Although FSAN is not a standards body. Because it supports both symmetric and asymmetric operations and is approximately ten times faster than ADSL. and France Telecom are members of FSAN. it works with many international. Companies ranging from Bell South and US West to Bell Canada. and ETSI/ANSI Plan 998. which is essential for delivering such real-time services as voice and video. Korea Telecom. Frequency Utilization VDSL is based on the use of frequency division multiplexing (FDM). so upstream and downstream data channels are separated from the 0 to 4 kHz frequency used for telephone service. it is a technology well suited to transport video into residences from several types of backhaul ﬁber that can be routed into a neighborhood. regional. ETSI Plan 997. with ﬁ ber in the core network and the use of copper for the last-mile access network. enabling a guaranteed quality of service (QoS). Through the use of separate upstream and downstream channels. VDSL represents the highest rate of all xDSL types of technology. to the curb. and country-based standards committees to promote the development of standards. an international consortium referred to as the Full Service Access Network (FSAN) consortium has been actively pursuing the standardization and deployment of both narrowband and broadband full-service access networks. Similar to other DSL technologies. into a building. enabling the telephone company to utilize the existing copper wire infrastructure for the delivery of broadband services. there are three types of frequency band allocation standards deﬁned for VSDL: 10 Base-S. . Currently. VDSL Access Technology Currently.Last Mile Solutions 117 FSAN Since June 1995. or into a home or ofﬁce. The consensus of FSAN members resulted in the organization specifying ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) as the primary transport technology. The FSAN consensus is based on the fact that ATM can provide a guaranteed bandwidth.
75-MHz frequency spectrum is used for downstream transmission and the 3.1 to 7. As indicated in the ﬁgure.to 3. frequencies from 0.118 Understanding IPTV Figure 5. ETSI/ANSI Plan 998 The ETSI and American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Plan 998 is similar to the ETSI Plan 997 with respect to the use of two upstream .138 to 3. the 0. Currently.05 MHz are allocated for downstream transmission and 3.05 to 12 MHz are allocated for upstream use. 10 Base-S is the most popular of the three VDSL standards. You can view 10 Base-S as a combination of Ethernet’s simplicity and VDSL technology that results in a symmetric transmission capability. as a mechanism to extend 10-Mbps full-duplex Ethernet over an existing copper-based infrastructure up to approximately 4000 feet. ETSI Plan 997 The European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) Plan 997 speciﬁes the use of four bands for VDSL.2 illustrates the ETSI Plan 997 frequency allocation. a leading VDSL chip vendor. Upstream (US1 and US2) and downstream (DS1 and DS2) bands differ in their frequency width and can support both asymmetric and symmetric transmission.1 MHz and 7.0 to 5. 10 Base-S 10 Base-S was developed by Inﬁneon.to 8. Figure 5.9. Figure 5.1 10 Base-S frequency allocation. Under 10 Base-S.75.0 MHz and 5.1 illustrates the 10 Base-S frequency allocation.0-MHz frequency spectrum is used for upstream transmission.
.Last Mile Solutions 119 Figure 5. Similar to the prior plan. Ham Band Notching The VDSL frequency spectrum covers a number of ham radio bands. Figure 5.3 ETSI/ANSI Plan 998 frequency allocation.2 lists ham radio bands deﬁned for VDSL notching.3 illustrates the ETSI/ANSI Plan 998 frequency allocation. To prevent such interference. Figure 5. notching capability is included in VDSL frequency spectrums in 10-Hz steps that can be enabled or disabled. and two downstream channels. it differs from the prior draft standard in the use of frequencies that are optimized for asymmetrical transmission. the use of VDSL could cause interference with amateur radio operators. ETSI/ANSI Plan 998 is currently a draft standard. Thus.2 ETSI Plan 997 frequency allocation. However. Table 5.
Although symmetric VDSL can be expected to ﬁnd a viable market for telemedicine.800 kHz (ETSI).84 Mbps.810 kHz 3. the synchronous digital hierarchy (SDH). which .96 becomes 3 (38.2 HAM Radio Bands Deﬁned for VDSL Notching Start Frequency Stop Frequency 1.16 Mbps. Web hosting.4.3 lists the ANSI T1/E1. First. the technology can support one or more high-deﬁnition (HD) TV shows as well as high-speed Internet access.000 kHz (ANSI) 7. the modulation method packs 4 bits per baud (51. I believe several items warrant discussion. we will concentrate our attention on the asymmetric version of the xDSL technology. which is supported by both SONET and SDH. and 51. In examining the entries in Tables 5.300 kHz (ANSI) 10. 7.When the bit rate is 38.4 Committee deﬁned a series of upstream and downstream data rates for VDSL derived from submultiples of the synchronous optical network (SONET) and its European equivalent.84 Mbps represent fractions of the Optical Carrier 3 (OC-3) data rate of 155. when used up to a range of approximately 4500 feet.96). 4. Although the data rate of VDSL decreases with distance.150 kHz Applications Through the use of VDSL it becomes possible to support digital broadcast television data streams. distance learning. and other applications that require high-speed bidirectional transmission. then the number of bits transported based on a baud rate of 12. which is the focus of this book. because asymmetric VDSL is better suited and more economical for supporting IPTV.84/12.4 downstream rates for asymmetric VDSL and Table 5.100 kHz 2. the bit rate of 29.3 and 5.52 Mbps.120 Understanding IPTV Table 5.100 kHz (ETSI).92. and several standard-television-type channels.96.3 you will note that at the highest downstream bit rate of 51. Those submultiples of 12. video on demand (VoD). and other applications via a common wire pair that is already routed into most homes and ofﬁces.500 kHz 7. Table 5. high-speed Internet access. if you turn your attention to Table 5. teleconferencing. ANSI Developments Recently.000 kHz 3.96). 25.88 Mbps.4 lists the upstream data rates for asymmetric VDSL services. Similarly.88/12. the ANSI T1/E1.000 kHz 10.
92 22.86 4.43 1.86 3. Similarly.16 25. the 0. ranging from a low Table 5.Last Mile Solutions 121 Table 5.24 2.48 5. we will note that at a data rate of 6.72-MBd signaling rate.24-Mbps operating rate at a 0.44 16.24 3.405 0.68 19. also results in 3 bits being conveyed by each signaling change.81 0.48 4.43 1.405 0.96 12.81-MBd rate results in 8 bits being packed into each symbol.92 25.3 Downstream Line Rates for Asymmetric VDSL Service Range Bit Rates (Mbps) Baud Rate (MBd) Short range (1000 ft) Medium range (3000 ft) 51.24 3.405 0.405 .96 9.72 12.86 6.67 6.405-MBd rate results in 8 bits being packed into every baud change.96 12.4 Upstream Line Rates for Asymmetric VDSL Service Range Bit Rate (Mbps) Symbol Rate (MBd) Short range (1000 ft) Medium range (3000 ft) Long range (4500 ft) 6.48 3.05 4.4.68 3.96 6.20 14.4 you will realize that the mixture of data rates and baud rates results in the number of bits per baud.44 19.81 0.24 Long range (4500 ft) requires a 9.405 0.3 and 5.48 12.58 12. for long ranges the 3. If we turn our attention to Table 5.62 0.24 2.72 6.48 4.84 38.96 9.88 29.48 Mbps. If you carefully examine Tables 5.405 0.24 3.81 0.
Under the VDSL Alliance DMT method. let’s turn our attention to this topic. such as the fast Fourier transform (FFT). CAP directly generates a modulated signal whereas QAM requires the generation of a quadrature carrier signal. CAP and QAM are both single-carrier modulation methods. signals occur on 247 subchannels. a battle occurred during the early turn of the century concerning VDSL modulation. DMT appears to represent a better choice.122 Understanding IPTV of 2 to a high of 8. three variables deﬁne the use of QAM: the center frequency. DMT uses multiple carrier frequencies referred to as subcarriers to modulate data. similar to the ADSL battles a decade ago. In a VDSL environment. modulating the carrier with a varying number of bits based on the S/N ratio. The VDSL Alliance — a partnership between Alcatel. to modulate data on as many as 4096 subcarriers. a lesser number of bits are modulated. each 4 kHz in width. Because VDSL DMT modems maximize data throughput by dynamically adapting the power level and number of bits modulated on each subcarrier to match impairments on the line. Texas Instruments. That is. the constellation size (QAM2 to QAM256. Although the standards bodies are looking at both QAM and DMT. One factor that can be expected to inﬂuence the standards debate is the action of the VDSL Alliance. which deﬁnes the number of different phase and amplitude combinations). For VDSL. Modulation Similar to the debate over ADSL modulation that occurred during 1993. especially in the presence of noisy conditions. VDSL DMT modems determine the signal-to-noise (S/N) ratio on each subcarrier. whereas a higher S/N ratio results in more bits being modulated on a subcarrier. on the other side were developers of discrete multi-tone (DMT) technology. as the S/N ratio becomes low. An unanswered question concerns the modulation scheme used by VDSL. Thus. In comparison. as illustrated in the top portion . We have just determined the number of bits per baud that need to be modulated. During the initialization process and periodically thereafter. Although VDSL single-carrier modulation modems can be manipulated by changing their constellation size. with the latter deﬁning the bandwidth requirements. and symbol rate. they provide a higher throughput than CAP/QAM. and the symbol rate. under adverse conditions they are not as ﬂexible as VDSL DMT modems that can alter the number of bits and power level on each subcarrier. Although they are similar to one another. and other vendors — has announced support for DMT. DMT uses digital signal processing techniques. carrier frequency. In one camp were proponents of carrierless amplitude and phase modulation combined with quadrature amplitude modulation (CAP/QAM).
QAM occurs once on one upstream channel and once on one downstream channel.Last Mile Solutions 123 Figure 5.4 illustrates the use of CAP and QAM. In addition. When CAP is used. it is important to remember Shannon’s Law.4. Voice conversations occur over the 0. In comparison. if the quality of the channel becomes impaired beyond a threshold. under CAP. each subchannel is monitored and. a mathematician who deﬁned the highest data rate a communications channel can support.5 MHz. Periodically. QAM can occur simultaneously on up to 247 subchannels. The lower portion of Figure 5.to 4-kHz band. Both DMT and CAP use QAM.to 160-kHz band is used for the upstream data channel. Comparing QAM on DMT versus CAP. training signals enable the VDSL modems on each end of the copper media to perform synchronization and equalization. In 1948. with the key difference being the manner in which QAM is applied. Shannon’s Law was formulated by Claude Shannon.4 Comparing DMT and CAP. Under Shannon’s Law. Under DMT. and the downstream data channel begins at 240 kHz and extends to a maximum value that varies with such conditions as line noise and line length but that can be no greater than approximately 1. the bandwidth of the copper wire is subdivided into three distinct entities. the signal is shifted to another channel. of Figure 5. c = B* log2 (1 + S/N) where c = maximum data rate (in bits per second) obtainable on a communications channel B = bandwidth of a channel (in Hertz) S/N = signal-to-noise ratio on the channel . The 25.
from an economic perspective.5 – . Deployment Options When we discussed ADSL earlier in this book we noted that its maximum range was approximately 18. several telephone companies are using ﬁve ﬁber deployment alternatives. it is too costly in most situations. and its use to transport HDTV and a few SDTV channels is limited to approximately 3000 feet. which would be costly. Thus. Although the best network architecture to support nonconstrained IPTV. Those situations primarily refer to existing developments. This means that. VDSL can be deployed over existing copper wiring at distances up to approximately 4500 feet. In actuality. Those alternatives include: Fiber-to-the-exchange (FTTEx) Fiber-to-the-cabinet (FTTCb) Fiber-to-the-neighborhood (FTTN) Fiber-to-the-curb (FTTC) Fiber-to-the-building (FTTB) FTTEx Fiber-to-the-exchange (FTTEx) references the use of ﬁber to the central ofﬁce. Instead. the tradeoff between DMT and CAP becomes one of having up to 247 4-kHz subchannels used for both upstream and downstream operations versus the use of 135 kHz (160 – 25) for upstream and 1. VDSL’s maximum range when used to transport standard television is approximately 4500 feet.24) for downstream operations. the transmission distance would be signiﬁcantly lowered to approximately 1000 feet.124 Understanding IPTV The function log2 represents the base-2 logarithm. if no HDTV services are required. From the central ofﬁce. Bandwidth plays a vital role in the capacity of a communications channel. . compared to ADSL. If HDTV support is required. such that the base-2 logarithm of a number x is the number y and 2y = x. In comparison. driveways to be tunneled under.000 feet.26 kHz (1. or ﬁber wires to be installed on overhead lines. VDSL can be used to provide a “last mile” solution for several SDTV channels and high-speed Internet access at distances up to 3500 feet. the deployment of VDSL is more dependent on ﬁber being routed closer to the customer. where the expense of running ﬁber cable from the neighborhood or the curb into the home would require lawns to be dug up. is through the use of ﬁber-to-the-home (FTTH). which would enable a home viewer to see many HDTV programs at the same time.
5 illustrates how FTTCb can be used to extend the distance from the central ofﬁce to subscribers and still allow service over existing copper wiring. In an IPTV environment. the DSLAM should support multicast transmission.5 are the Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexers (DSLAMs) that reside at central ofﬁces that directly serve many xDSL subscribers. Figure 5.5 FTTEx vs. If it does not. The function of the DSLAM is to connect subscribers communicating via twisted pair to the backbone network. for which a central ofﬁce must be located within 4500 feet of a subscriber. This action can result in congestion at the DSLAM input when a popular program is requested. In comparison. Figure 5. .Last Mile Solutions 125 FTTCb Fiber-to-the-cabinet (FTTCb) is a method to serve subscribers more distant from a central ofﬁce. The upper portion of the ﬁgure illustrates the use of FTTEx. FTTCb. the lower portion of Figure 5. Not shown in Figure 5. In this situation ﬁber is run from the central ofﬁce to an optical network unit (ONU). if the DSLAM supports multicast transmission. from which data ﬂows to the subscriber over the existing copper wiring.5 compares FTTEx and FTTCb. the switch or router located at a central ofﬁce will need to replicate each multicasted TV channel to subscribers requesting to view the channel. In comparison. it will have to receive only one data stream for each channel as input. then replicate the data stream for all subscribers who used their set-top box or PC to select the channel.
which can result in the need to burrow ﬁber cable through roads and driveways. FTTC represents a good solution for home developments where roads and curbs are in the process of being prepared. if half a dozen medium-rise apartment buildings each consisting of 20 units are located on a 1-acre track. it also can provide the highest level of . Although this minimizes the distance for the use of twisted-pair wiring. ﬁber is routed from a central ofﬁce to locations within neighborhoods. FTTB Another option that can be considered to facilitate the use of VDSL is to route ﬁber directly into a building. ﬁber cable is extended to the curbs of homes and ofﬁces. which is also known as ﬁ ber-tothe-node. This will allow subscribers to be migrated to more capable ﬁber technology as demand for HDTV and other technologies increases. For example. results in the use of ﬁber directly into the home or ofﬁce. FTTH The last deployment option that warrants attention is ﬁber-to-the-home (FTTH). as its name implies. In an FTTN environment. this method of ﬁber deployment represents a practical solution for multi-dwelling units. then FTTN may represent a better deployment method. Typically. has similarities to FTTCb but is also different. FTTH. FTTN would have the capability to be upgraded in the future to enable optical ﬁber to be supported directly into homes and ofﬁces. If a neighborhood is already established. FTTB would be a more suitable solution than if the buildings were in a rural area and each property was located on a 5. the density of multi-dwelling units within the area to be served will be a signiﬁcant factor in determining if economics justiﬁes this type of deployment. Although FTTH represents the most expensive method used for last mile connectivity. Of course. it increases the use of ﬁber. Referred to as FTTB. FTTC In a ﬁber-to-the-curb (FTTC) deployment.126 Understanding IPTV FTTN Fiber-to-the-neighborhood (FTTN). Although this is similar to FTTCb. such as apartment buildings.or 10-acre track. as well as for businesses. which minimizes the distances of copper wiring routed into a group of homes and ofﬁces.
We will examine how video and audio can enter a customer’s home on a single ﬁber or twisted-pair metallic conductor and be routed to television and stereo devices and personal computers located throughout the residence. . In several ﬁeld trials. Those factors include the manner by which the data stream was transported and the distance from the subscriber to the nearest communications carrier ofﬁce or ONU servicing the subscriber. although in many instances that rate represents a maximum physical capacity. the gateway performs optical-to-electrical and electrical-to-optical conversion. a VDSL gateway is typically located where the ﬁber terminates and provides analog-to-digital and digital-to-analog conversion for a series of twisted-pair wires routed from subscriber homes and ofﬁces to the gateway. As a single ﬂow of data transporting this mixture of recreational activities and potential business connectivity reaches the subscriber’s premises. Instead. FTTH has resulted in a data rate of 155 Mbps to the consumer. If FTTN is used.2 Distribution into the Home In concluding our discussion of last mile solutions we will note how IPTV can be distributed within a subscriber’s home. Introduction The basic distribution of IPTV can be expected to be bundled with music channels and high-speed Internet access. By deploying FTTN or FTTC. Summary Because VDSL can provide a relatively high transmission rate over existing copper-based twisted pair. a VDSL modem can be placed in the home or ofﬁce and connected to existing telephone wiring.Last Mile Solutions 127 bandwidth to subscribers. with the average data rate to the endpoint limited to between 10 and 40 Mbps. 5. telephone companies can avoid the cost of digging up lawns and gardens as well as burrowing through driveways. the manner by which the data ﬂow can be distributed will be based on several factors. This is because VDSL is similar to other DSL technologies in that it is based on the use of modems that perform analog modulation. telephone companies can replace many of their main feeds with ﬁber-optic cable without having to route the cable directly into homes and businesses. In actuality.
because communications carriers are in business to make a proﬁt. including VDSL. In comparison. the data rate decreases. some subscribers currently without HDTV or willing to forgo that service may be able to be supported at a greater distance than subscribers who expect HDTV to be part of the package offered to them. Those factors include the type of set-top box installed by the telephone company. In addition.128 Understanding IPTV Versions of xDSL Currently there are several versions of xDSL that can be used to transport a high-speed data streams containing video. they will more than likely use a version of passive optical network (PON) technology to split the capacity of a ﬁber routed to the neighborhood. audio. and VDSL. does not result in a similar limitation. and Internet access into a subscriber’s premises. which will result in ﬁbers routed into subscriber premises having an overall data delivery rate less than 50 Mbps. Although this rate is considerably less than the theoretical capacity of the ﬁber. each version of xDSL. has a transmission rate inversely proportional to the transmission distance over the copper media that connects a DSLAM in a central ofﬁce to a subscriber’s xDSL modem. FTTH. some modern ﬂat-panel television sets are being manufactured with a USB interface. Inside the Home In addition to outside factors. the use of ﬁber directly into homes and ofﬁces will more than likely remain as a small fraction of all last mile solutions because an equivalent bandwidth can be provided by VDSL for most subscribers at a lower implementation cost for the communications carrier. the capability of a “routing gateway” typically installed by the homeowner. several factors inside the subscriber’s premises will govern the delivery of IPTV. Now that we have a general overview of how IPTV can be distributed to a subscriber’s home or ofﬁce. let’s turn our attention to speciﬁcs. . which represents an extension of ﬁber from the central ofﬁce to the subscriber’s premises. This means that as the distance increases. which in turn is cabled to the television via its USB port. However. and the type of home networking technology used or to be installed by the subscriber. As discussed earlier in this chapter as well as in Chapter 3 when we reviewed the three version of ADSL. ADSL2+. Thus. such as the distance to telephone company equipment and transmission method used. ADSL2. Thus. Those versions of DSL include ADSL. it is sufﬁcient to transport several channels of SDTV and HDTV as well as enable a member of the household to surf the Web. which facilitates the distribution of IPTV either to home networking equipment connected directly to the TV or to a set-top box.
6 indicates the integration of a set-top box into an xDSL modem. Thus. In comparison.6 enables a routing gateway to be built into the xDSL modem or directly attached to the device at the point of entry of the service into the home. this method of termination using an xDSL modem with a built-in set-top box might be appropriate for apartments and other small residences. The key difference between the two illustrations shown in Figure 5. In the lower portion of Figure 5.6 an optional routing gateway is shown built into the xDSL modem. . we can easily note the manner by which any type of DSL service is terminated in the home or small ofﬁce.6 illustrates the manner by which a serial data stream ﬂowing over an xDSL connection can be terminated. Figure 5.6 is the fact that the integrated set-top box with the xDSL modem provides users with the ability to connect a standard or HD television without requiring a home network or a routing gateway. The top portion of Figure 5.Last Mile Solutions 129 IPTV and the Home Network Because all versions of ADSL and VDSL terminate at the subscriber in a similar manner. with the subscriber providing an optional routing gateway to distribute IPTV to other locations in the home. the lower portion of Figure 5. This conﬁguration enables subscribers to locate their computers closer to the point of xDSL service entry while using a home network to distribute SDTV and HDTV Figure 5.6 Distribution of an IPTV data stream.
Thus. Thus. The ﬁrst two extensions to the initial 802. When a wired Ethernet is used as the home network.11 standard are referred to as the 802. this network solution requires set-top boxes or televisions with client software and an Ethernet connector to receive the broadcast stream and select the appropriate portion of the data stream for viewing. The 802. From the hub.11a and 802. the majority of home networks using wired Ethernet will more than likely be new homes that are sold as “pre-wired” for highspeed communications. home. referred to as 802. operated at only 1 or 2 Mbps and is not suitable for distributing IPTV within the home. will be connected to the Ethernet hub that forms the home network. In this section we will brieﬂy examine the advantages and disadvantages associated with each type of home network. Also known as 100 Base-T. apartments.11.4-GHz frequency band as well as one method for operation in the 5-GHz frequency band.11a standard deﬁned data . any discussion of the delivery of the technology would be incomplete without a discussion of home networking. Wired Ethernet Wired Ethernet needs to provide a 100-Mbps transmission capability because 10-Mbps Ethernet is too slow and Gigabit Ethernet has a very short range when transmitted over copper wiring. 100-Mbps Ethernet needs to operate on category 5 (CAT5) or better wiring. which normally includes between three and four switch ports. A variety of home networking solutions are currently available for selection by the consumer. Network Options Because the home network represents the key to the delivery of IPTV within homes. and small ofﬁces.11b standards. Those networks range from wired and wireless Ethernet networks to networks that operate over existing electrical wires and are referred to as broadband over power lines (BPL). The ﬁrst wireless LAN standard. or ofﬁce. data will be broadcast onto each Ethernet endpoint. Wireless Ethernet Over the past decade the IEEE has standardized a number of wireless transmission methods for operation in the 2. which can be expensive to install after a building is constructed.130 Understanding IPTV to both set-top boxes and televisions located throughout an apartment. the router gateway.
11a standard operates at almost twice the frequency of 802. most vendors advertise a throughput of 110 Mbps for their 802. their transmission range can be expected to cover the area of an average home or apartment. although the maximum data rate of 54 Mbps for 802. and equipment manufactured to be compatible with the 802. this standard is well suited for a home network that requires support for a mixture of audio.11n standard. Recognition of the need to improve both the data rate and transmission distance resulted in the development of the 802. The newest member of the IEEE 802.4-GHz frequency band as well as implement spatial diversity through the use of multiple antennas.11n standard is extremely well suited for providing a home networking capability in an IPTV environment.11 series of standards is the 802. whereas the 802.4-GHz frequency band. which will have multiple HDTVs. Because 802.11n products.Last Mile Solutions 131 rates up to 54 Mbps in the 5-GHz frequency band. A second emerging HomePlug Powerline Alliance standard is the HomePlug AV speciﬁcation.11b equipment.0 speciﬁcation many years ago.11g standard. and Internet access . Thus. video.11g-compatible equipment operates in the lower frequency band. Under this standard.11a technology can transport a mixture of SDTV and HDTV.11b standard deﬁned a maximum data rate of 11 Mbps in the 2. This standard builds on previous standards by adding a multiple-input.4-GHz frequency band. In comparison. This speciﬁcation deﬁnes the transmission of data over existing electrical wiring at data rates up to 12 Mbps. Although a theoretical data rate of 540 Mbps appears possible. its transmission distance is limited compared to equipment compatible with the 802. Powerline The HomePlug Powerline Alliance completed the HomePlug 1. because it operates in the 5-GHz band. Because 802. wireless LANs can communicate at data rates up to 54 Mbps in the 2. Although an 11-Mbps transmission rate is capable of carrying a single standard television broadcast. equipment that supports the IEEE 802.11n products operate in the 2. This is because higher frequencies attenuate more rapidly than lower frequencies.11b standard. multiple-output (MIMO) capability in which transmitters and multiple antennas allow for increased data throughput. The HomePlug AV speciﬁcation deﬁnes a 200-Mbps channel rate at the physical layer that is capable of delivering 150 Mbps at the data link layer. Designed for the home of the future. it does not have the capacity to transport multiple SDTV broadcasts and provide high-speed Internet access or a single HDTV broadcast throughout the home. its transmission range is normally sufﬁcient to cover most areas of a typical-sized home or apartment.
apartment.000 ft being delivered to different locations within the home.11g 802.11n — 802.11a — 802. we turn our attention to comparing the service rates and distance support of the various ﬂavors of xDSL to the operating rates of different home networking technologies. Access Technologies vs.11g 802. Because most rooms have multiple electrical outlets.11n — 802. which plugs into an electrical outlet and has either a USB or Fast Ether net connector.11n .11 — 802. Home Networking In concluding this chapter. Table 5.11a — 802.000 ft 24 Mbps 2 Mbps 9.000 ft 12 Mbps 1 Mbps 12. a router could be connected to the electrical power line in the home and data distributed to four locations at a cost of $375 for ﬁve power line adapters.11g 802.11n — 802.11g 802. it appears that the evolving HomePlug AV standard may provide the most practical method to deliver the high-speed data stream consisting of a mixture of standard.5 xDSL Capacities and Constraints Version of DSL Feature ADSL ADSL2 ADSL2+ VDSL Downstream data rate Upstream data rate Maximum distance 8 Mbps 640 kbps 18.and high-deﬁnition television channels as well as high-speed Internet access to locations throughout a home.6 Home Networking Technologies That Can Support Different xDSL Access Technologies Type of DSL Downstream Data Rate Home Networking Technologies ADSL 8 Mbps Wired Ethernet ADSL2 12 Mbps Wired Ethernet ADSL2+ 24 Mbps Wired Ethernet VDSL 52 Mbps Wired Ethernet 802.11a — 802. With an expected retail price of under $75 per adapter.132 Understanding IPTV Table 5.11b 802. or small ofﬁce.000 ft 52 Mbps 6 Mbps 1.
In comparison. As previously noted in this book. the bandwidth provided by the home networking equipment should be at least equal to the download speed provided by the xDSL technology used to provide the access line. one can see that only ADSL2+ and VDSL have the capacity to support both several SDTV channels and high-speed Internet access. Thus.6 provides a comparison of home networking data rates and access technologies. including high-speed Internet access. a single channel of HDTV can require up to approximately 20 Mbps under MPEG-2. .5. Table 5. indicating the potential home networking technologies that can be used to support different xDSL access technologies. Home Networking The type of home networking method can be consider ed to be as important as the access technology because the former provides a mechanism for delivering received data streams throughout a home or apartment. they need to consider the programming mix they will sell against the distance of subscribers from the nearest central ofﬁce and the operating rate of the service. the delivery of just one channel of standard-deﬁnition television requires between 2 and 6 Mbps under MPEG-2. Thus. only VDSL provides the bandwidth necessary to support several SDTV channels plus HDTV channels and high-speed Internet access. In addition.Last Mile Solutions 133 Access Technologies As telephone companies deploy IPTV services. Comparing those data rates against the various ﬂavors of xDSL shown in Table 5. service providers will more than likely have to tailor their product mix to the access technology used to provide subscribers with a connection to their central ofﬁce.
we have only brieﬂy mentioned a number of hardware components. This is because the basic functions of hardware devices such as servers and set-top boxes are well known. you are using a set-top box. examining their functionality in an IPTV environment. which will be connected to your television. and archive servers. content managers. That set-top box converts analog. depending on the set-top box.1 Set-Top Boxes If you subscribe to a cable service to obtain the ability to view channels beyond a basic low-cost analog bundle. Similarly. In this chapter we will probe deeper into IPTV hardware components. broadcast servers.Chapter 6 Hardware Components Up to this point in the book. and may also convert digital channels if you subscribe to that offering. 135 . we will examine the differences between a cable TV set-top box and an IPTV set-top box as well as the functions performed by a media center and media center extender. without any signiﬁcant explanation of their functionality. from predeﬁned frequencies that channels are broadcast on the cable to either channel 3 or channel 4. if you subscribe to a satellite service you must install a set-top box. 6. For example. This set-top box converts a digital compressed signal into the television format suitable for being displayed on your screen on either channel 3 or channel 4.
136 Understanding IPTV Evolution Both analog and digital set-top boxes trace their origins to the later 1960s and early 1970s when cable companies began to offer premium channels. Basic Functionality In an IPTV environment a good portion of the functionality of set-top boxes is similar to the set-top boxes of cable and satellite operators. . telling the purchaser that they should inform their cable company of its use.” and an active market for such products developed. China. Later versions of these early set-top boxes performed a rudimentary scrambling of both video and audio by shifting portions of audio and video frequencies. By 2006. but this is expected to change as new manufacturers ramp up production of IPTV set-top boxes based on contracts initialed with vendors providing IPTV service. the world’s potentially largest cable market. This technology at ﬁrst simply distorted the premium channel picture by broadcasting the channel with modiﬁed vertical and horizontal synchronization. global shipments of set-top boxes were approaching 15 million per year. Together. channel scrambler technology was incorporated into the ﬁrst generation of set-top boxes. It turned out to be quite easy for some hobbyists to develop “descramblers. Market Leaders Currently two companies dominate the digital set-top box market — Motorola and Scientiﬁc Atlanta. Since the early rollout of set-top boxes. many stores continue to advertise the sale of descramblers. In addition. the latter acquired by Cisco Systems during 2006. analog technology has rapidly been replaced by digital technology. with many incorporating such functions as personal digital recorders that store up to hundreds of hours of television and provide a high-deﬁnition viewing capability. remains a great unknown with respect to the relationship between installation of cable TV and IPTV services. Thus. Today the vast majority of set-top boxes are digital. Although technically illegal. they account for more than 80 percent of worldwide shipments. Because premium channels could be viewed by subscribers who did not want nor did not wish to pay for the service. This relationship probably favors cable due to the fact that the majority of the Chinese mainland telephone system would require a considerable infrastructure upgrade to support IPTV. early set-top boxes simply added the missing synchronization signal to premium channels to enable an applicable undistorted series of TV frames to appear on the subscriber’s television.
Some set-top boxes will include a hard drive. Through a signiﬁcant amount of software or ﬁrmware coding. on demand. With this added capability it becomes possible for subscribers to transmit recorder programs within their home or ofﬁce to a PC similarly equipped with a network-compatible device. or other selected methods as well as provide information about a selected show. In comparison. IPTV set-top boxes can support Web browsing both for the Internet and as a mechanism to quickly cycle through guide data. which enable support of WiFi communications or attachment to a home network.Hardware Components 137 For example. For example. conventional set-top boxes will shift the frequency of a selected channel residing on a coaxial cable or received via a satellite dish to channel 3 or 4. the set-top box transmits a request to join a multicast group when the subscriber simply changes the channel from one standard channel to another. transmitted within IP datagrams. the set-top box will. IPTV set-top boxes also support additional features that are neither available nor possible to add to conventional cable and satellite set-top boxes. Another feature built into the software of the set-top box is the ability to transmit unicast requests to the network when the subscriber selects a premium video-on-demand event. channel. they recognize and act on UDPs (User Datagram Protocols). Then. for all types of services the set-top box represents a dedicated computer that provides an interface between the television set and the service provider. The browser can also be used to view e-mail and e-mail attachments. interface . In addition to decoding signals. and more recently developed set-top boxes including one or more USB ports. another difference between the two that deserves mention is the elimination of the need for an IPTV set-top box to perform frequency shifting. IPTV Set-Top Box Added Functionality Although IPTV set-top boxes have similar basic functionality to boxes developed for cable and satellite providers. Perhaps the major difference between IPTV and conventional set-top boxes resides in the added functionality the former provides and which we will shortly discuss in some detail. In addition. enabling the subscriber to record programs for later viewing. However. The request will ﬁrst ﬂow to a billing and management server. which will verify that the subscriber is not in arrears on his or her bill and then add the selected event’s cost to the current bill prior to transmitting the event as a series of IP datagrams. subscribers can elect to watch TV on their computer screen or burn a DVD and view the show on a television that does not have a built-in hard drive. provide a guide listing of shows by time. This is because the input to the IPTV set-top box is a digital data stream that the set-top box will output on either channel 3 or channel 4.
including conventional cable and satellite operators. IPTV Set-Top Box Developers Worldwide a large number of hardware and software developers are working on IPTV set-top boxes.138 Understanding IPTV with various types of home networks via gateways. we will ﬁrst discuss that company’s efforts in developing set-top boxes. and games to set-top boxes and TV devices. let’s turn our attention to a series of set-top boxes developed over the past six years. when the company began to explore the display of video with its Windows Media player. we will obtain an appreciation of the overall effort by focusing our attention on several vendors. news. Some manufacturers may produce a series of products that incorporates additional features as subscribers move up their product line. and evolving telephones that combine telephone audio with a camera that enables parties to a conversation to see one another. sports. Microsoft Microsoft’s IPTV efforts date to before the turn of the century. In June 2000. the company introduced Microsoft TV Foundation Edition. Now that we have an appreciation for the general features and functionality of the IPTV set-top box. This TV platform enabled network operators to offer video on demand. which represented a new digital television platform. videoconferencing. Initial Market Focus The initial target markets of the Microsoft TV Foundation Edition were cable operators with tens of millions of installed low-end or legacy set-top . readers should recognize that not all of these functions and features will be incorporated into each box. What was particularly interesting about Microsoft’s announcement was the fact that the company made its software platform scalable to support current and future-generation set-top boxes. Although the IP set-top box functions are considerable. Other manufacturers may decide to incorporate only certain features and functions into a standard product. commencing with Microsoft’s early efforts at enhancing conventional set-top boxes for cable companies and then discussing Microsoft’s efforts and those of other software and hardware developers in the IPTV set-top box area. Because Microsoft has been very active in this development area. as well as provide support for real-time Voice-over-IP (VoIP). Although space constraints preclude a full listing of all companies in this ﬁeld. weather.
with the ability for economies of scale to reduce its costs to below $50 by 2007. Microsoft’s Prototype Set-Top Box In late 2003. and middleware developed for delivering content and services to a higher performance set-top box. which were manufactured during the prior decade. according to Microsoft. video on demand. Microsoft unveiled plans during October 2003 to develop an end-to-end IP television delivery solution. and multiple picture-within-picture capability on standard television sets that lack that capability. Microsoft’s Advanced Solution was based on an embedded operating system (Windows CE). Other features would include digital video recording. a TV graphical user interface (GUI). an enhanced digital rights management capability that would secure video assets and television shows. single-chip IPTV set-top box processor as well as a hardware decoder for Windows Media 9. at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Telecom World exhibit in Geneva. which.or 20-MHz processor and as little as 1 to 4 MB of memory.” which was targeted toward what were then high-end set-top boxes. and.NET. Microsoft announced its “Advanced Solution. Microsoft’s prototype IPTV set-top box assumed the availability of a low-cost. such as a 15. the company announced a series of updates to its IPTV . This solution would include set-top boxes based on Windows CE. Among those features were instant channel changing. .Hardware Components 139 boxes. to placate video providers. Although Microsoft’s efforts in the area of IPTV took a back stage position relative to its Windows and Ofﬁce suite developments. Switzerland. at SuperComm 2005. normally contained minimal hardware. and an embedded version of the XP operating system. Also included was Windows Media 9 audiovisual technology. In addition to targeting the low-end set-top box market. IPTV Effort A few months after introducing its Foundation Edition and Advanced Solution. Such boxes. This would enable the company’s cost per box to be initially around $150. Microsoft’s announcement of its end-to-end IPTV delivery solution was accompanied by a brochure touting the next-generation features subscribers could expect to receive through its use. Such set-top boxes typically included a 100-MHz processor and between 8 and 32 MB of memory. Microsoft demonstrated its IPTV set-top box solution targeted at high-end boxes. multimedia programming guides with integrated video. has approximately three times the efﬁciency of MPEG-2 and twice that of MPEG-4.
whose businesses include consumer electronics. it appears that Microsoft will be the major player behind the deployment of IPTV. which control more than 80 percent of the set-top box market. The ﬁrms mentioned included Motorola and Scientiﬁc Atlanta. the French subsidiary of T-Online International. in concluding our discussion of set-top boxes. Referred to as the STB810 IP set-top box. the only certainty about certainty is uncertainty. including both network operators and set-top box manufacturers. Royal Philips Electronics is one of the world’s largest electronics companies. DVD playback. semiconductors. joining T-Online of Germany. In France. In addition. which will provide support to approximately 18 million homes by the end of 2007. which had previously announced its selection of a Windows CE–based set-top box for its IPTV service. improved picture algorithms. data storage. as well as Harmonic and Tandberg. lighting. it can also be obtained with an embedded Linux operating system. appliances. Because SBC Communications (now known as AT&T) previously agreed to use Microsoft’s IPTV Edition platform in its Project Lightspeed. However. Thus.140 Understanding IPTV Edition software platform. IPTV Efforts During 2005 Royal Philips Electronics introduced a new IP set-top box that targets both IP and broadcast set-top boxes. Microsoft announced several partners that planned to use its IPTV software. and medical products. which could result in an attractive price because this would alleviate the necessity to pay royalties to Microsoft. . Royal Philips Electronics Royal Philips Electronics dates to 1891. announced that it had selected Microsoft’s IPTV Edition software platform to run trials of next-generation television. which includes a MIPS32 central processing unit (CPU) core along with dual Tri Media media processing cores. The updates were developed to facilitate the creation and delivery of video services. T-Online France. we will look at several additional vendors and their products. when Ger ard Philips established a company in the Netherlands. it supports such advanced features as video telephony. Today. to borrow a well-known phrase. Although the STB810 can be obtained with Windows CE. timeshift recording. and personal video recording. The Philips STB810 IP set-top box uses a multi-core system-on-chip (SOC) processor. Another key announcement at SuperComm 2005 was by Microsoft concerning the names of set-top box manufacturers that agreed to imbed Microsoft’s IPTV Edition client-side software into their set-top boxes.
The company currently offers decoding for high-deﬁnition MPEG-4. By January 2006 Sigma Designs introduced a line of set-top boxes based on its SMP8630 family of chipsets that includes a 300-MHz MIPS core and a 200-MHz memory interface. including MPEG-2 and H.Hardware Components 141 Sigma Designs Sigma Designs is a company that specializes in the development of siliconbased MPEG decoding ﬁrmware for consumer products. The new family of chipsets initially announced included the SMP8630 and SMP8634. Sigma noted that its new pr oduct is the ﬁrst to integrate decoders for all major digital video formats. Similar to the Royal Philips Electronics set-top box. Opera Software announced that it will port its Opera browser as well as its Opera browser software development kit to the new Sigma Designs chips. would launch an IP set-top box based on Sigma’s media pr ocessors that would use Windows CE as its operating system.264. a second highdeﬁnition decoder. HDMI (High-Deﬁnition Multimedia Interface). a Tatung subsidiary. and H. and other compressed video standards. MPEG-1. the higher end SMP8634 targets multi-stream high-deﬁnition applications. The SMP8630 provides a 7. Sigma Designs markets complete reference designs for various markets.10 as well as MPEG-4. The SMP8630 tar gets single-stream highdeﬁnition or multi-stream standard-deﬁnition applications. allowing the set-top box to use either operating system. The basic SMP8630 supports up to 256 MB of 32-bit RAM.264. and a second digital signal processor as well as a graphics input port. In addition.1 home theater capability. whereas the higher end SMP8634 will support up to 512 MB of 64-bit RAM and 256 MB of 8/16-bit ﬂash memory. and a dedicated smartcard bus. Both Sigma Designs chips provide support for video decoding up to 1920 × 1080 pixels at 30 progressive frames per second for MPEG-2. IPTV Efforts In June 2005 Sigma Designs announced that TIS Net. According to Sigma Designs. Sigma Designs announced that both Windows CE and Linux will be ported to the SMP chips’ MIPS cores. its SMP8630 . a second video input. MPEG-4. and IPTV settop boxes. In comparison.0 stereo output in addition to a 7. an Ethernet MAC (Media Access Control) controller. including networked DVD players.1 home theater audio output and a single video input along with a shared smartcard bus. The higher end SMP8634 adds 2. The chips also support picture-in-picture window operations as well as a range of audio decoding compatibility from Dolby Digital through the three audio layers of MPEG-1 and MPEG-2. MPEG-2. portable media players. In addition.
it is obvious that a quantum leap in the technology and capability of set-top boxes has occurred. If you compare the previously mentioned set-top box features and functionality to set-top boxes manufactured during the 1980s and 1990s. from 32 to 128 MB of RAM. four USB 2.1 provides a summary of the features of each of the three initial announced set-top boxes. the basic hardwar e platform supports 250-. Tables 6. In addition. Talegent In concluding our examination of set-top boxes. includes a 10/100-Mbps RJ45 Ethernet port. and a DVD player/recorder. S-video. which is shared by all three Talegent set-top boxes.11) and Bluetooth wireless communications using the Mini PCI card slot. and RCA stereo jacks for audio out.142 Understanding IPTV would be available in samples in March 2006 and the SMP8634 would follow in April 2006. IPTV Efforts Recognizing the need to satisfy different markets.0 ports. and S/PDIF. 280-. 250-GB hard drives. HDMI. Talegent announced during late 2005 three models in its Evolution 1 series of set-top boxes. The Talegent Evolution 1 series is based on the Philips STB810 platform. composite video. a photo printer. Both chips were scheduled to reach production availability by mid-2006. In addition to offering the Evolution 1 series of set-top box platforms directly. video out support for PAL or NTSC. and 16 to 64 MB of ﬂash memory. Those plans include the addition of WiFi (802. Basic hardware. Not resting on its laurels. Talegent has indicated that it plans to extend the capabilities of its settop boxes. a Mini PCI slot for expansion. we will discuss Talegent’s Evolution 1 series of set-top box platforms.1 Talegent Evolution 1 Series Comparison Feature TG200 TG400 TG600 DVB front end Hard drive connection DVD connection One No No Two Yes Yes Two Integrated 160-GB drive Integrated . and 310-MHz CPUs. Table 6. each of which can be attached via a USB port. an asynchronous serial port. Telegent plans to manufacture them for private labeling for sale or lease by third parties.
Optional hardware allows users to connect the media center to one or mor e televisions in the home to display a comprehensive guide of program listings. creating documents. Functionality In addition to managing video. In fact. and a program that turns the hard drive in the media center computer into a sophisticated video recorder that allows the . a media center will provide users with the ability to manage audio and photographs. users may be able to record video to disk. Microsoft’s Media Center.2 Media Center and Center Extenders One of the more interesting types of computers to reach the market over the past few years is a device sold as a “media center. Once the media center is capable of displaying infor mation on one or more televisions via a home network. one could use the media center to present a slide show of photographs from a family vacation. a program that facilitates the creation and playback of movies. basically controls the market for media center-based PCs. or even forward a previously viewed show to a friend at another location or to other television receivers in the home. download a movie acquired from the Internet.Hardware Components 143 6. it can be used to control the presentation of information. or even show a PowerPoint business presentation. which is based on a special version of Windows XP. burn a DVD. Microsoft’s Media Center Software Currently. Depending on the permission associated with the digital content and operating system software. Microsoft’s software supports a large number of third-party plug-ins that can add a considerable amount of functionality to its media center. an online TV listing guide that can be customized. and performing other computer-related activities. Some examples of plug-ins include software for displaying and distributing caller ID on other devices connected to the home network. Overview The media center represents a PC with a television tuner that allows users to view real-time television while performing such traditional computer operations as sending and receiving e-mail.” This is the ﬁrst PC developed to operate via a remote control and reside on a shelf in the den or living room along with other audio-visual equipment.
Overview Media Center Extender technology was announced by Microsoft at the International Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas during 2004. it is the Media Center Extender that makes the distribution of information a reality. whereas use of the 802. the transmission range is roughly . Through the use of Microsoft and third-party software.144 Understanding IPTV user to record speciﬁc shows or even a series of shows on any PC with Web access.11g communications. Use of the IEEE 802. because high frequencies attenuate more rapidly than lower frequencies. announced its ﬁrst product in late 2004. and resume watching the show from the point where you initiated its recording. a subsidiary of Cisco Systems. Marketed as a media center extender. the Media Center Extender’s objective is to extend the reach of the core systems to television displays located in various areas and ﬂoors in a home. control. Although the 5-GHz frequency band has less interference. when watching a video or television show. Media Center Extender Although the Media Center PC was developed as a mechanism to record. Based on Windows CE embedded software. the capability of the Media Center PC can considerably expand. If you decide to take the call you could then use a remote control to record the show while activating a microphone and routing the caller output through the television or computer speakers. Linksys.4-GHz band.11g standard results in communications occurring in the 2. the Linksys product connects to home entertainment devices using such standard cable connectors as RCA plugs that ar e inserted into a device’s jack. The Media Center Extender connects to a home network via wired Ethernet 10/100 BASE-T or wireless Ethernet. hang up the call. you could have the caller ID of an inbound telephone call displayed on your PC monitor.11a standard results in communications occurring in the 5-GHz band. Product Operation One of the ﬁrst products to use Microsoft’s CE embedded software is the Linksys Wireless Media Center Extender. and display audio and video content throughout a home. supporting either IEEE 802. Once the call is completed you might then press a few keys on the remote to deactivate the microphone.11a or IEEE 802. For example.
and even select and listen to hundreds of Internet radio stations via a stereo system connected to the extender. whereas the extender could be located in the den along with your audio-visual equipment. you will notice many similarities and a few differences. its use allows the device to be located most anywhere in the home. The differences result from the fact that we are now taking a more in-depth examination of the role of servers in an IPTV environment. as its name implies. timeshift broadcast server. also alleviating . The Linksys Media Center Extender includes S-video. If you compare the servers just mentioned to the servers discussed in Chapter 4 and previously illustrated in Figure 4. pictures. users can operate a remote control to make their way through a series of menus to obtain access to digital movies. this function could be accomplished via software on a “media” server. 6.3 Servers The set-top box. digital video server.4-GHz cordless telephones used by teenagers. download and view digital movies.11a device to minimize interference. and transmit the content onto an IP network for delivery to subscribers. if you use a microwave oven and have one or more 2.4-GHz range. format the content for distribution. if the telephone line comes into the home in the kitchen and bedroom you could locate the Media Center PC on a desk in the kitchen or bedroom. and media center extender represent devices located in the home or ofﬁce. and pause live television shows.9. a timeshift broadcast server enables a service provider to broadcast prerecorded video at different times. and subscriber management system. extends the range of the media center.Hardware Components 145 half of the 2. For example. At the opposite end of the IPTV network are a series of servers that acquire content. Because the media center extender. If the service provider does not offer this feature it would not need this type of equipment. However. In addition. component video. Users can also watch. record. you need to become aware of their functionality. or music previously stored on their Windows Media Center PC. and composite video output along with a digital audio port and left and right audio ports that can be connected to speakers. we will discuss the role of the broadcast server. TV shows. you will probably want to use the Media Center Extender’s wireless capability as an 802. Although not all IPTV operations include every server listed in this section. In this section we will focus our attention on the operational characteristics of a series of servers that form an integral portion of an IPTV infrastructure. media center. Thus. Commencing with the headend server. Once the extender is connected to a television.
The captured broadcasts are then converted into multicast data streams using preselected television channel associations for transmission over an IP network. A corporate broadcast server is designed to enable organizations ranging in scope from single to multiple locations to broadcast live video. this section will focus on the additional functions that may be included in a broadcast server used in a corporate environment.” Both the media server and the broadcast encoder shown in Figure 4. Assuming it does. Returning our attention to Figure 4. For either action the set-top box will transmit a request to join the multicast group associated with the selected channel. the digital br oadcast frames are streamed via multicast addressing using selected protocols. the two terms can be synonyms or antonyms. with the DSLAM transmitting the requested channel in the form of a received multicast transmission being transmitted as a unicast transmission over the copper connection to the subscriber.146 Understanding IPTV the need for a separate server. however.9 are equivalent to a headend server. The conversion process includes receiving streaming video broadcasts as a series of frames and converting the frames from each broadcast into a digital broadcast format. the subscriber could either directly change channels or use the guide facility to select a channel. such as a series of . the service provider will more than likely employ a “division of labor” by moving certain functions to separate servers.9. which is the focus of this section. Headend Server One of the more important types of servers used in an IPTV environment is the headend server. Broadcast Server Another name for a headend server is a broadcast server. This request will ﬂow from the set-top box to the Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexer (DSLAM) in a DSL environment. The headend server resides at the central facility of the service provider. such as RTP under UDP or UDP RAW. Then. such as MPEG-2 or MPEG-4. Because we previously discussed the main functions of the headend server. note that the generic “media server” is shown accepting a variety of broadcast sources and then transferring data to a “broadcast encoder. as the number of IPTV subscribers increases. terrestrial (DVB-T). and different types of presentation data. audio. However. and cable (DVB-C). This server captures direct video broadcast streams transmitted via satellite (DVB-S). The headend software must obviously support the set-top box installed at the subscriber’s premises.
while a different sequence of frames could be directed to a room where several Rembrandts and Van Goghs are on display. the video broadcast server does not convert broadcast streams into multiple multicast transmissions. the DVS is typically a smaller and less powerful server than a headend device and allows organizations to create content that is displayed within a predeﬁned area.9. the three main differences between the broadcast or headend server and the VOD server can be categorized by their accessibility. most if not all of its functionality can be included in the generic media servers shown in Figure 4. museums. hotels. Of course. Unlike a headend server. the DVS might transmit information about modern art to a museum room housing Jackson Pollock works and the work of similar modern artists. This server supports the capture. Thus. Digital Video Server A third type of server that warrants a degree of explanation is a digital video server (DVS). such as on displays within a museum or airport. . Those addresses can represent employees in the central ofﬁce. and transmission of digital video. or customers. and cost. transmission method. storage. and corporations. Unlike a conventional digital video server. it can also be located at any point on a network. contractors.Hardware Components 147 PowerPoint slides. libraries. Designed for use by schools. editing. Video-on-Demand Server The video-on-demand (VOD) server functions as a repository for shows. to selected IP addresses. through the use of hardware and software it becomes possible to take the video feed generated on a PC and move it via a wired or wireless network onto a large-screen display for viewing by a group of employees. where each transmission is assigned to a television channel. the video broadcast server is commonly designed to generate a single feed at a time. it was not shown in Figure 4.9. such as a school or museum. Although this server can be located at the headend of a transmission system. whose broadcasts will appear the same on all screens. movies. a DVS that is IP capable can transmit different frames to different IP addresses. which is viewed through the use of a browser operating on a desktop or laptop computer. and other types of video events that subscribers may wish to view at any time and for which a fee is usually associated. Thus. or area ofﬁces or even customers and subcontractors. nor does this server work in conjunction with one or more types of set-top boxes. Because a DVS is commonly used in a closed IPTV system. regional ofﬁces. Instead. However.
Then. a VOD server will transmit selected movies. sports. Assuming the billing server approves the request.9 as a subscriber management system and will be discussed in more detail later in this section. archive servers are manufactured in a variety of conﬁgurations. depending . Thus. the multicast-capable DSLAM will transmit one sequence of datagrams to each subscriber who previously joined the multicast group by turning the channel in their set-top box. Thereafter. This may require the IPTV operator to ﬁrst have VOD requests transmitted to a billing server that could also check the status of the subscriber’s account. and other information in response to a speciﬁc subscriber request. but also transmit a message that ﬂows through the subscriber’s set-top box and is displayed on the computer or television screen informing the subscriber of the reason for the rejection of the VOD request. A recognition of the fact that both headend and VOD servers can easily lack the capacity to store thousands of hours of programming resulted in the development of video archive servers. What sets them apart from headend or broadcast and VOD servers is the fact that the archive server is designed speciﬁcally to support an extremely large amount of online storage. the headend or broadcast server transmits each video stream as a multicast message that ﬂows as a single sequence of datagrams to a DSLAM or equivalent device that serves many subscribers. where. Archive Server One of the key differences between data and video is the fact that the latter requires considerably more storage. Concerning the transmission method. typically in the tetrabyte range. In comparison. In addition. and at least one subscriber has requested a speciﬁc content.148 Understanding IPTV Whereas programs from the headend or broadcast server are transmitted at predeﬁned times. the archive server will normally store video using a Redundant Array of Independent Disks (RAID). consider a description of a movie or television show versus its actual stored content. information stored on the VOD server is transmitted in response to speciﬁc subscriber requests. the VOD server transmits such information directly to the requesting subscriber as a sequence of unicast datagrams. television reruns. Similar to conventional servers. after updating its records that server would then forward the request to the VOD server. if the account has been in arrears for more than a predeﬁned threshold or time duration. A third difference between a headend or broadcast server and the VOD server resides in the fact that a subscriber will normally have to pay a fee to view a VOD performance. the billing server might not only refuse the request. That billing server is shown in Figure 4.
However. either performance or fault tolerance or a combination of both are improved. enhancing performance while providing a good level of fault tolerance.2 RAID Levels Level Description Level 0 Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Level 4 Level 5 Level 6 Level 10 Striped disk array without fault tolerance provides data striping or the spreading of blocks across multiple disk drives. uses asynchronous. Table 6. allowing for the failure of a single disk. Note that RAID represents a category of disk drives . Although this improves performance. but Level 10 requires a minimum of four drives and has a high overhead and limited scalability. it does not provide any fault tolerance capability. on the RAID level employed. Error-correcting coding stripes data at the bit level. Cache is arranged into multiple levels and a processor manages the array asynchronously. Although similar to RAID Level 4. A disadvantage of Level 4 is similar to that of Level 3 in that the parity disk can create write bottlenecks. Mirroring and duplexing provide a duplicate copy of data and twice the read transaction of single disks while the write transaction rate is unchanged. and fault tolerance occurs due to a dedicated parity disk. A combination of RAID Levels 0 and 1. Level 10 was not one of the original levels. Block-level striping with distributed parity stripes both data and parity across three or more drives. Under Level 10 the array is initially set up as a group of mirrored pairs (Level 1) and then striped (Level 0). Upon retrieval. which is written along with data.2 provides a brief description of both standardized and proprietary RAID levels. This improves performance while maintaining fault tolerance. cached striping with dedicated parity to enhance Levels 3 and 4. This proprietary method. Both performance and fault tolerance are high. RAID Level 5 is perhaps the most popular version of RAID. allowing a single bit error to be corrected on the ‘‘ﬂy. Level 5 removes the need for a dedicated parity drive. Redundant bits are computed using a Hamming code.Hardware Components 149 Table 6. Block-level striping with dedicated parity improves performance by striping data across many disks. which is also a trademark of Storage Computer Corporation. performance is degraded by the need to write to the parity disk when data is striped. If a data disk fails. the parity disk is used to create a replacement disk.’’ Bit-interleaved parity results in a byte-level striping using a dedicated parity disk. data and the error correcting code are read.
some IPTV providers may ﬁnd it convenient to acquire programming via satellite or terrestrial communications and store such programming on a separate server for broadcasting at predeﬁned times.9. this capability is usually implemented on a dual-processor system connected to a RAID that provides a high degree of fault tolerance. satellite providers. Because high-deﬁnition video requires considerably more bandwidth than standard-deﬁnition television. Because a billing and management capability is critical to the operation of the IPTV service. fault tolerance.150 Understanding IPTV that use two or more drives together to enable a degree of increased performance. but it is particularly useful when used with a video archive server in an IPTV environment. sometimes the IPTV service provider will acquire and store video on a separate server for broadcasting at a speciﬁc time. the archive server can be connected to a LAN. or video server. broadcast. or both. Timeshifting is most often considered to represent the operation of a subscriber using a DVD or VCR recorder. Similarly. This conﬁguration ensures that the failure of a processor or disk can be compensated for. In addition. certain popular premium channel programming is commonly rebroadcast several times after its initial showing. Although time-shifting can be performed through software on a headend. and cable operators may use dual-processor systems on a single . A RAID can be attached to most types of servers. the timeshift broadcast server can also store premium channel rebroadcast standard-deﬁnition and high-deﬁnition programming. That veriﬁcation as well as billing and other management functions can be performed on a separate server. the server is commonly referred to as a timeshift broadcast server. Billing and Management Server In previous discussions. where it can provide a backup storage capability to other servers connected to the local area network. Timeshift Broadcast Server Timeshifting represents the transmission of a video at a time other than when it was originally scheduled. we just brieﬂy mentioned that access to video on demand might require the status of a subscriber’s account to be veriﬁed. Thus. When this occurs. Although smaller IPTV providers as well as some telephone companies. but it can also represent the operation of an IPTV provider. Because an archive server can function as a back end to other types of servers it can be used as auxiliary storage for any of the generic media servers shown in Figure 4.
This system can also include the ability to accept payments via electronic bank transfer or selected credit cards. The billing and management server is shown as a “Subscriber management system” in Figure 4. In addition.9 may include telecommunications connections to several major credit card organizations as well as a connection to perform transfer of funds via electronic banking. most operators will more than likely elect to maintain their billing and management system on dual servers that are interconnected and operate in tandem.9.Hardware Components 151 server. . the data captured by the billing and management system is used to create a monthly subscriber bill that may be either transmitted via e-mail or sent as a postal delivery to each subscriber. Thus. the subscriber management system shown in Figure 4. The functions of a billing and management server can include veriﬁcation of the account status of subscribers to preclude those in arrears from ordering new pay-per-view shows as well as generating applicable messages to remind subscribers when payment is due or overdue.
and Macromedia’s Flash Player. Because Microsoft’s Windows Media Player and Apple Computer’s QuickTime account for the vast majority of media players currently used. all four products handle both video and audio and are capable of displaying certain types of stored images.Chapter 7 Software Solutions In the previous chapter. In this chapter we will turn our attention to software in the form of media players that enable both corporate and individual users to view a variety of video data streams retrieved from the Internet. The differences between each of the four products have to do more with their functionality. Apple Computer’s QuickTime. examining how a media player can enable users to view and hear a range of media events. At the time this book was written. because they basically perform the same types of operations differently. directly from the Internet or previously stored as a ﬁle on the computer. we will primarily discuss these two products in this chapter. 153 . we will illustrate the use of IPTV. we will brieﬂy touch on the other two media players to ensure readers are aware of all four media players. Although the four products possess many similarities. In doing so. Concerning similarities. including movies and other types of video media. there are also some differences. we will describe and discuss several of the more popular media players. four media players accounted for the vast majority of PC usage: Microsoft’s Windows Media Player. we focused on the key hardware components that cumulatively provide an IPTV solution. As this is accomplished. However. Real Networks’ RealPlayer.
7.1 Microsoft’s Windows Media Player
Microsoft’s Windows Media Player has been continuously updated since its initial release over a decade ago. Now in its tenth edition, this software enables users to organize and play multimedia. Users can listen to a variety of audio, including Internet radio; copy music to portable devices; view different types of media, including pictures and movies; and copy and play DVDs, CDs, and eventually high-deﬁnition (HD)-DVDs. As Microsoft likes to remind its software users, Windows Media Player can be considered to represent a combination of a radio, television, and photograph viewer combined into a single application. In this section we will ﬁrst turn our attention to Windows Media Player 9. Once we are familiar with its functionality, we will then focus on the latest version of Windows Media Player, version 10. Both versions 9 and 10 are signiﬁcant upgrades from prior versions of Windows Media Player and support the transfer of video to portable devices as well as the viewing of video streams.
Windows Media Player 9
Figure 7.1 illustrates Microsoft’s Player 9 with its Media Guide button selected. Clicking on the Media Guide button results in the periodic display of options for movie trailers, new DVD releases, and music videos. As can be seen in Figure 7.1, the menus associated with the Media Guide button allow users to select Music, Movies, Entertainment, Radio, Current Events, Site Index, and WindowsMedia.com. Although most of the menus are self-explanatory, a couple deserve mention. Selecting Site Index results in the display of the site index for the WindowsMedia.com Web site. In comparison, selecting WindowsMedia.com results in the display of that Web site’s home page, which, when performed by this author, was the same as selecting Home or Movies.
On the left side of the viewing window shown in Figure 7.1 are a series of buttons, with the Media Guide button selected. The top button, labeled Now Playing, allows users to use accelerator keys (Tab + Enter) for visualization, a term Microsoft uses to reference splashes of color and geometric shapes that change in tandem with the beat of the audio being played. Thus, users would ﬁrst select the Radio Tuner button to hear a selected radio station, and then they would select the Now Playing button to display changing shapes and colors as they listened to the selected radio station.
Figure 7.1 Windows Media Player 9, with its Media Guide button selected, displays a periodically changing collection of movie clips and radio listening options.
The third button on the left side of Windows Media Player 9, labeled CD Audio, provides users with the ability to listen to an audio CD. Users can also copy music as well as display artist and album information.
The fourth button, which is labeled Media Library, allows users to create and manipulate the contents of playlists, a term used to represent a collection of audio and video titles that collectively form a library. The items on or added to the playlist can include the audio or video ﬁ le currently being played as well as other ﬁles either on the local computer or residing on another computer, with the latter referenced through the use of a URL. Users can add and delete items from a playlist and even delete a playlist from the library, including all items previously added to the playlist. Users can use the CD Audio button to create a CD from any playlist they have created. However, the playlist cannot be more than 74 minutes long, and only .mp3, .wav, .asf, .wma, and .wmv ﬁles are supported.
Table 7.1 Windows Media Player 9 Audio and Video File Support
File Format Description
.wav .wma .wmv
Also referred to as .aifc and .aiff, this audio speciﬁcation came from Apple Computer and is used on Silicon Graphics computers. The MPEG Layer 3 audio format is the most popular format for downloading music. By eliminating portions of the audio ﬁle that are not essential, mp3 ﬁles are compressed to approximately one-tenth the size of an equivalent pulse code modulation (PCM) ﬁle. This is the standard audio ﬁle format used by Windows PCs. Stores uncompressed (PCM) CD-quality sound ﬁles. The Windows Media audio format provides the ability to apply copy protection to ﬁles. The Windows Media video ﬁles represent advanced system format (.asf) ﬁles, which include audio, video, or audio and video compressed with Windows Media Audio (WMA) and Windows Media Video (WMV) codecs.
File Format Support
Table 7.1 provides a brief description of the audio and video ﬁle formats associated with the ﬁle extensions supported by Microsoft’s Windows Media Player.
The ﬁfth button on the left portion of the Windows Media Player is labeled Radio Tuner. This button can be used in a manner similar to the preselected station, search, and seek buttons on a radio. Figure 7.2 illustrates the initial Windows Media Player 9 main window when the Radio Tuner button is selected. The left portion of the window lists featured stations and the right portion of the window lists groups of stations that will result in a list of stations that belong to each group. When users select a featured station they can add it to a station list, be directed to its Web site if given the option to do so, or hear its broadcast by selecting Play. Selecting the Find More Stations entry on the upper right portion of the window allows users to search by keyword or zip code to locate a list of stations.
Figure 7.2 The Radio Tuner button allows users to listen to and record audio from stations around the world.
Portable Device Support
The sixth button, which is labeled Portable Device, provides users with the ability to copy audio and video ﬁles to a variety of devices, including products that use ﬂash memory, as well as onto a disk, CD, or DVD.
Windows Media Player 10
Prior to examining the operation of Windows Media Player 10, a few words are in order concerning its privacy options (ﬁrst shown during the installation process) and its new interface.
Figure 7.3 illustrates the default privacy option settings display that appears during the installation of Windows Media Player 10. Note that users can obtain detailed information about the privacy options by clicking on the More Information link. By default, media information from the Internet is enabled, music ﬁles are updated, licenses for protected content are automatically
2. to protect user privacy.3 The Windows Media Player 10 default privacy options preclude it from transmitting the player ID to content providers and usage information to Microsoft. However. . consumers’ transmissions from the player to content providers in the form of unique Player ID and usage information to Microsoft are disabled.158 Understanding IPTV Figure 7. acquired. Figure 7. each of the ﬁle types listed in a table during installation will be opened by Windows Media Player 10. Windows Media Player 10 includes a new visual interface. and ﬁle and URL history is saved. Another option that deserves mention concerns the selection of Windows Media Player 10 as the default player for 13 types of audio and video ﬁles. Screen Display As previously mentioned.4 illustrates the initial Windows Media Player 10 screen display. Unless unchecked. Note that the left panel buttons used in Windows Media Player 9 have been replaced by a series of tabs across the top of the screen as well as the use of the ﬁle menu entries across the top portion of the new Player. The audio and video ﬁle types directly supported by this player that are enabled by default are listed in Table 7.
4 Windows Media Player 10 replaced the buttons of Player 9 with tabs across the top of the screen. .Software Solutions 159 Table 7.2 Windows Media Player 10 Default File Types Windows Media Audio ﬁle (wma) Windows Media Video ﬁle (wmv) Windows Media ﬁle (asf) Microsoft Recorded TV Show (dvr-ms) DVD video Music CD Playback MP3 audio ﬁle (mp3) Windows Video ﬁle (avi) Windows Audio ﬁle (wav) Movie ﬁle (mpeg) MIDI ﬁle (midi) AIFF ﬁle (aiff) AU audio ﬁle (au) Figure 7.
5 The Windows Media Player Library tab provides the ability to select music and videos from a tree-type menu. and playlists. however. In examining the top portion of Figure 7.160 Understanding IPTV Now Playing Tab As its name implies.4.5. . this resulted in a blank screen. Figure 7. In this example I used the Library tab to view titles stored in my playlists. videos. An example of the use of the Library tab is shown in Figure 7. Library Tab The Library tab can be used to easily access music. clicking on the Now Playing tab results in the display of a selected video (or of a visualization effect if an audio ﬁle is selected). note that the tab labeled Now Playing was selected. television shows. because at the time the screen was captured no entries in the video playlist located on the right portion of the screen were selected.
Other types of ﬁles may have a protection feature that requires users to purchase a license that “unlocks” the ﬁle and allows it to be copied and played. By default. Those ﬁles typically include . including the CinePlayer DVD decoder from Sonic Solutions. DVD Decoder Plug-Ins At the time this book was written the Microsoft Windows Media Player 10 Web site offered three DVD decoder plug-ins.asf.wma. the NVIDIA DVD decoder from NVIDIA. and the Power DVD SE for Windows XP from CyberLink Corp. Video Operations Using the latest version of Windows Media Player. the Rip tab gives users the ability to copy songs from CDs onto the computer. we will brieﬂy discuss the features of two of these products. .. which was Windows Media Player 10 at the time this book was prepared. . as well as access a utility program to check the compatibility of DVD decoders on your computer.mp3. Burn. Now that we have an appreciation for the Windows Media Player 10 defaults and new interface. let’s examine its use for viewing videos. . and Sync Tabs The Rip tab can be considered to represent the opposite of the Burn tab. Once they copy one or more songs onto the computer. when you obtain a PC with a DVD drive or install an internal or external DVD drive. this author was able to both listen to CDs and play DVDs on his computer. and JPEG images. point your browser to the Microsoft Windows Media Player 10 Web page (www. To do this. they can use the Burn tab to create a CD or the Sync tab to synchronize and download previously stored ﬁles onto a portable device.Software Solutions 161 Rip. .wmv. To play DVDs using Windows Media Player requires that both a DVD-ROM and a software or hardware DVD decoder be previously installed on the computer. you will more than likely install a DVD decoder that is designed to work with the hardware.com/windows/windowsmedia/mp10). That is. Concerning burning and synchronization operations. Windows Media Player (including the most recent version) does not include a DVD decoder.microsoft. only certain types of ﬁles can be transferred to a CD or portable media player. To provide readers with an indication of the capabilities of Windows Media Player 10 bundled with a DVD decoder plug-in. its functionality should be checked to avoid potential problems. Inc. including a DVD decoder plug-in. where you can add a variety of plug-ins. Although the DVD decoder will work with Windows Media Player 10. However.
Thus. Offered for a price of $14. such as synchronizing (copying) recorded TV shows to a portable media center or another device. Referred to as the Windows XP Video Decoder Checkup Utility. this utility could be used to determine whether the computer has a compatible MPEG-2 decoder. This warning is most useful because it could eliminate many hours of attempting to determine why . Although each DVD decoder plug-in included a slight variance in features from other products. because some IP set-top boxes now provide support for high-deﬁnition video.162 Understanding IPTV The CinePlayer DVD decoder from Sonic Solutions. Video Decoder Checkup Utility In addition to the previously mentioned plug-ins. The ﬁlename for the utility program provided by Microsoft is dvdchecksetup. This ﬁle can be downloaded from several Web sites in addition to Microsoft. this program determines if an MPEG-2 decoder is installed on your Windows XP computer and whether or not the decoder is compatible with Windows Media Player 10 and Windows XP Media Center Edition. and as such was indicated as the preferred decoder.95. including the numerous movie trailers available for viewing on the Web. if a computer user encounters a problem. it appears that software development is lagging behind hardware. all of the decoders were limited to supporting MPEG-2 video streams. Microsoft now provides a free DVD and MPEG-2 utility designed for computers operating Windows XP with Media Player 10.99.1 soundtracks to two channels for video playing on a computer limited to two speakers. it was not compatible with the synchronization features of Windows Media Player 10. In examining the display resulting from the execution of dvdchecksetup..6 illustrates the result I obtained when I executed the utility program on one of my desktop computers. this software provides support for the playback of DVD movies and MPEG-2 video ﬁles. In addition to playing DVDs.exe. is priced at $14. Inc. the Power DVD SE provides support for Dolby Digital audio decoding and provides a downmix of 5. This product claims to offer the industry’s “best DVD navigation” as well as provide the highest quality DVD playback on PCs. Figure 7. to synchronize MPEG-2-encoded content to a portable device the display warns the user to obtain an updated version of the MPEG-2 decoder. A second plug-in that deserves a few words is the Power DVD SE for Windows XP from CyberLink Corp. Also note that although the CyberLink Video/SP Decoder was shown as compatible with Windows XP Media Center Edition.exe. the CinePlayer DVD decoder includes an MPEG-2 decoder that enables the playing of video ﬁles. In addition. note that two DVD decoders were located on my computer. Thus.com. Thus.
(If you have never seen it. and selected the Now Playing tab. or audio visualization. DVD.7 shows a still picture from that video of Jack Webb beginning the famous skit. the transmission of video from desktop or laptop to a portable device is failing using the preferred decoder. you would select the item from a playlist if the target is on your computer or referenced to a location via a URL. the video began playing.6 The Microsoft DVD utility program checks your computer for MPEG2 decoders and their compatibility with Windows XP Media Center Edition as well as support for ﬁle synchronization. clicked on its entry. Viewing Video To view a video. I once received via e-mail the famous “copper clappers” short video from a friend. however. the kleptomaniac from Cleveland. I was amazed that both Mr. it would normally play automatically. After I added it to my playlist. Figure 7. or selecting a menu entry. Check it out and you’ll see. Webb and Mr. In Windows Media Player 10 you can .Software Solutions 163 Figure 7. The skit concerned the theft of copper clappers by Claude Cooper. clicking on a button. Watching this video. If you are using a DVD player. this is from an episode of The Tonight Show in which Johnny Carson performed a skit with Jack Webb of Dragnet fame.) Manipulating the Video Display Users can manipulate the viewing area using a key pair. Carson were able to perform the entire skit without bursting into laughter. if it does not begin to play you could click on the Library button and select and click on the drive that contains the disk.
or select Full Mode from the View menu to expand the video onto the full screen. Although most DVDs look ﬁne when viewed in full-screen mode. The full-screen button (icon) is shown in Figure 7.7 at the top right but to the left of the playlist. most video shorts and movie trailers do not have sufﬁcient resolution to be viewed in that manner.7 A still shot from the “copper clappers” video short viewed using Windows Media Player 10.164 Understanding IPTV Figure 7. Pressing the ESC key restores the player to its original size. Skin Mode In concluding our tour of Windows Media Player. Figure 7. A word of caution is in order concerning full-screen viewing. click on a View Full Screen button.8 illustrates the default Windows Media Player 10 . press the ALT + Enter keys. A skin can be considered to represent a new surrounding added to Windows Media Player that changes its appearance. I would be remiss if I did not brieﬂy discuss skin mode.
because it includes support for creating videos using the H. QuickTime 7 Pro allows users to record audio for podcasts (a term used to reference radio shows downloaded over the Internet). Apple also offers an upgrade to QuickTime 7 Pro for $29. Although most skins incorporate basic player functions such as Play. . and convert media into more than a dozen formats. which is similar to a labeled spaceship that contains a video display area. which in effect is MPEG-4. version 7. Most skins by default use only a small portion of a display and represent a convenient method for viewing a video or listening to an audio while working at your PC.8 The default Windows Media Player 10 skin looks like a spaceship connected to a viewer. Next. Although the basic bundle is free. and Volume Control. some skins provide added functionality. This version of QuickTime converts users from video watchers to video makers.2 Apple Computer’s QuickTime Apple Computer has long been the leading producer of hardware and software innovations. is bundled with iTunes 6 for Windows 2000 and Windows XP based computers. Stop. create movies that can be viewed on an Apple iPod.Software Solutions 165 Figure 7.99 from their Web site. Previous. skin.264 codec. Note that the default skin has a series of buttons over which the user can move the cursor to obtain a display of their meaning. Its current QuickTime player. 7. In addition.
The H. which provides a signiﬁcant advance in compression technology over MPEG-2. with some options that were very interesting. as more Internet HD programming becomes available for user access. informing the user that the installation was completed without error. Once the user clicks on the button labeled Finish at the bottom of the dialog box. The ﬁrst box can be used to search the My Music folder to ﬁnd songs already stored and add them to the iTunes music library.264 compression standard was selected for use in HDDVDs and enables users to watch video that is crisp. and a Setup Type dialog box gives the option of enabling or disabling the installation of desktop shortcuts and the use of iTunes as the default player for the audio ﬁles stored on the computer. Installation Although Apple provides users with the ability to download QuickTime as a standalone entity. followed by an “Installation Successful” message displayed in a new dialog box. The user either accepts the default location for installing iTunes and QuickTime or selects another location. a series of iTunes setup boxes will be displayed. including system requirements and new features incorporated into each program. First. with the default being English.166 Understanding IPTV Overview Both QuickTime 7 and QuickTime 7 Pro include built-in support for H. one can expect that other media players will likely obtain a similar capability. The next dialog box generated by the iTunes Setup Assistant concerns organizing the iTunes music folder.264. after which the installation process commences. I selected the bundled version of QuickTime and iTunes. A second interesting portion of the installation process is the appearance of a dialog box that provides a summary of information about iTunes and QuickTime. iTunes Setup Assistant iTunes can play both mp3 and aac music ﬁles as well as automatically convert unprotected Microsoft wma ﬁles to aac ﬁles. The user selects the button labeled Next. Although QuickTime Pro’s support of MPEG-4 represented a method of media player differentiation. Users can choose . which is common to a sequence of dialog boxes. and colorful in a window that is up to four times the size of windows typically used to view video when an MPEG-2 codec is used. users can select from 14 languages. clear. The download process and program installation were straightforward. whose ﬁrst dialog box by default selects adding mp3 and aac ﬁles to the iTunes music library and converting wma ﬁles to aac ﬁles. This conversion is performed by the iTunes Setup Assistant.
creating lists of songs. A third iTunes Setup Assistant dialog box allows users to select whether to allow the program to take them to the iTunes Music Store or the iTunes Library. . which has the heading Source.9 illustrates the iTunes display after I allowed the default iTunes Setup Assistant settings to convert existing wma ﬁles to aac ﬁles and add those ﬁles to the iTunes Music Library along with mp3 and aac ﬁles already in the My Music folder on my desktop PC. File Conversion Figure 7. By selecting that entry and using the ﬁle menu to input a previously stored video. Figure 7.9. which will cause the program to rearrange and rename their music ﬁles and folders or they can choose to be in charge of changing ﬁle and folder names. viewing videos. In the left column of Figure 7. note the entry labeled Videos.Software Solutions 167 to keep the iTunes music folder organized. and burning CDs and DVDs.9 iTunes can support listening to CDs and radio stations.
one ﬁle incompatibility is the inability of QuickTime to open Microsoft wmv video ﬁles.10 Through the iTunes File menu. which illustrates the use of the Import command in the File menu. File Support Previously we described ﬁle types supported by Windows Media Player 7. as we will note. as indicated by the icons to the left of each video name. by default iTunes looks in the My Music folder. the support of certain ﬁle types represents a problem. Apple Computer developed ﬁle formats referred to as mov and qt for .168 Understanding IPTV Figure 7.10 will result in an error message: “The ﬁle ‘copper clappers. However. note that this author previously stored four videos in the wmv format. Because a friend previously e-mailed me the copper clappers video.10. Video Incompatibility When the user selects Import from the iTunes File menu. In Figure 7. we can note one ﬁle type incompatibility by selecting that ﬁle. users can import video and audio ﬁles.wmv’ cannot be imported because it does not appear to be a valid exported ﬁle.” Thus. you can use iTunes to view videos. Clicking on the Open button shown in Figure 7. which operated under Windows Media Player.
version 7. Only QuickTime ﬁles version 2.0 added support for music soundtracks.0 for the Macintosh. with a Windows version released in July 2005.0 for the Macintosh.0 for the Macintosh was released in February 1994 and represents the only version of this media player that did not have a free version. Apple has used a series of minor releases to ﬁx bugs and improve H. The latest release of QuickTime.0. which included support for viewing full-screen QuickTime video through iTunes.0 or earlier can be played in the Microsoft Windows Media Player.0 for the Macintosh was released in April 2001.Software Solutions 169 QuickTime to create. let’s turn our attention back to QuickTime. opened in iTunes’ movie source). In June 1999 Apple released QuickTime 4. In May 2005 Apple released iTunes 4. publish. Now that we understand the reason why a short video that was viewable in Windows Media Player 7 could not be viewed in QuickTime (or. Apple Computer released QuickTime 6. and view multimedia ﬁles. and a range of editing features. QuickTime 2. and aac ﬁle types.0 for Windows. which included additional features.8. a version for Windows became available. provided the basic architecture to include multiple movie tracks. The original video codecs included what is referred to as “road pizza” (used for normal. This dual-release policy of a free and Pro version of QuickTime has continued through version 7. and a version for Windows was released in November 1994. Shortly after its Macintosh release. referred to as QuickTime 1. This release included both a free version and a Pro version.264 performance. edit.x. MPEG-4. QuickTime 5. In addition. more accurately. Between July 2002 and October 2004 Apple Computer added nine minor releases to include support for iTunes 4. The next release of QuickTime. extensible media type support. and a graphics codec. In July 2002.0. an animation codec. Evolution The ﬁrst version of QuickTime. occurred in March 1998. which included support for MPEG-2. occurred in April 2005. Similarly. Apple released QuickTime 1. live-action video). This release added skins to the QuickTime player and support for multiprocessor image compression. version 3. in the opposite direction. . Apple Computer’s QuickTime cannot be used to view Windows Media ﬁles. This version of QuickTime added a second video codec and support for large movie ﬁles. Since then. a full-screen video mode was added to the Pro version of the player.5 for the Macintosh in 1992 and contracted with an outside company to develop QuickTime 1. QuickTime 2. Later versions of QuickTime require the proprietary Apple QuickTime player.
In addition. QuickTime supports mov ﬁles. video. effects. each of which stores a particular type of data. However.11 QuickTime’s normal size display. users can operate QuickTime as a separate program. QuickTime 7 supports most of the H. . Operation As previously noted. This size is what Apple refers to as “normal. as illustrated in Figure 7. which function as multimedia container ﬁles that contain one or more tracks.” Through the View menu. or text used for subtitles. Figure 7.170 Understanding IPTV Currently. Each track contains track media as data reference to a ﬁle or as a digitally encoded media stream created using a speciﬁc codec. Notice the default size of QuickTime in relation to the size of a PC screen. which includes built-in support for full-screen display of video. the Pro version of QuickTime is needed to obtain a full-screen viewing capability. Apple Computer has integrated some elements of QuickTime and iTunes that enable movies to be viewed in iTunes. users can also select Half and Double Size.11.264 standard as well as MPEG-4 ﬁles. unlike Windows Media Player 7. such as audio. In addition.
13 illustrates the beginning of the movie preview for Basic Instinct 2. When this occurs the source is shown as the Movie Store. Clicking on the Trailer option in Figure 7. If you click on a movie trailer or select a video with a compatible ﬁle format and have iTunes 4. the Apple Computer Movie Store offers consumers the ability to purchase a wide Figure 7.11.12 Selecting a trailer in QuickTime results in iTunes being initiated to allow the trailer to be played from the Music Store. you can browse and watch videos in iTunes.12.11 and you will notice a list of movie trailers that were transmitted from the Apple Computer Web site when the QuickTime program was initiated.8 or later. a term used to represent the iTunes Web site. Note that the iTunes display screen is initiated as a response to the QuickTime selection. .Software Solutions 171 Watching Videos Examine the top right column shown in Figure 7. Figure 7.13 results in the selected preview being displayed in iTunes. An example of this is shown in Figure 7. which illustrates the result obtained by clicking on the Basic Instinct 2 trailer shown in the upper right column of the QuickTime player shown in Figure 7. with the selected trailer appearing as being from the Music Store. As indicated earlier in this book.
however. which encourages users to spend a nominal $29. only QuickTime Pro allows them to save or export ﬁles. In fact. Apple Computer has limited the basic capability of QuickTime. or another type of video whose ﬁle format is supported by QuickTime you can open that URL for viewing in a QuickTime player.172 Understanding IPTV Figure 7. variety of television shows. if you know the URL of a movie. . it can also operate as a standalone video player.95 to purchase a license to use QuickTime Pro. it will be interesting to observe the effect of a recent ABC announcement (April 2006) that that network intends to make available many shows for downloading for free. TV show. Because those shows include several ABC hits. QuickTime is highly integrated with iTunes. Returning to QuickTime As previously noted. viewers will receive each show free from ABC with commercials. Although users can open ﬁles and URLs.13 Watching a trailer in iTunes whose source is the Movie Store. Although such shows will include many hit series now sold on the Movie Store. including Lost. Thus.
7. with the leftmost icon displaying privacy settings. full-motion. Figure 7.Software Solutions 173 Plug-In Components Similar to Microsoft. which are not compatible with Windows Media Player and QuickTime. RealPlayer and RealPlayer Plus support RAM ﬁle types. travel. The basic RealPlayer supports all major media formats and supports the transfer of music to more than 100 portable devices. which are referred to as plug-ins by Microsoft. The four icons on the bottom edge of the settings box determine which settings can be viewed and changed. The microphone icon controls the record volume. and hospitality organizations from IPIX. E-commerce. Flash Player A second media viewer that warrants attention is the Macromedia Flash Player. Apple Computer’s Web site lists a series of components that can be acquired from third-party vendors to enhance QuickTime. Many Web sites.3 Other Media Players In addition to Microsoft’s Windows Media Player and Apple Computer’s QuickTime and iTunes. include a full-screen. Although Real Networks includes support for many popular video ﬁle formats. Examples of components. . RealPlayer Similar to Apple Computer. Those players are the Real Networks RealPlayer and the Macromedia Flash Player. two other players deserve mention. The ﬁle folder icon allows a user to control how much information can be stored on the user’s computer.14 illustrates the playing of ABC’s Commander-in-Chief program within a Macromedia Flash Player. with a slight charge associated with the Plus version of the player. with the settings box displayed in the middle of the player. including abc. TV-quality codec from On2 as well as 360′ × 360′ images useful for real estate. support the use of the Macromedia Flash Player. and the camera icon allows camera controls if the user’s computer is connected to that type of device. it currently has a small portion of the market for media players. Real Networks offers a free and a Plus version of RealPlayer.com and Yahoo News.
enabling video conference calls. it will primarily ﬂow to a set-top box. in addition. which will then distribute the selected channel via a home network to an applicable television located anywhere in the home that has a connection to the home network or to a TV directly connected to the box. as PCs and TVs converge there exists the possibility that the media player will evolve to not only display video on televisions but. 7. Although a media player is not required to view video on a television.174 Understanding IPTV Figure 7.4 Summary In this chapter we looked at two media players in detail and brieﬂ y discussed two additional players. including displaying caller ID information. and supporting to be developed applications that are limited only by one’s imagination. the media player is required to view video only on a PC. When IPTV enters the home on a DSL or ﬁber connection. combining the capabilities of media players with the display and audio capability of modern television. allow many other features.14 Viewing the ABC network hit Commander in Chief using Macromedia’s Flash Player. it becomes possible for IPTV data . In an IPTV environment. For example. permitting remote gaming.
convergence of PC and TV technology along with a broadband Internet connection offers the potential to alter the manner by which we view video as well as when and where we view video. Thus.Software Solutions 175 streams to be manipulated for the convenience of the consumer to include recording shows with less commercial breaks on a network drive available for viewing on any television in a home connected to the home network. .
IPTV When we talk about Internet television and IPTV we tend to treat them as synonymous terms because Internet television represents a stream of IP datagrams that delivers MPEG frames generated by a television station. and TV shows from television stations that add an Internet interface to their over-the-air broadcasts. Internet Television Internet television refers to the broadcast of news. examining how we can view television broadcasts on our PC from stations located around the world. weather.1 Internet Television vs. most 177 . there are some signiﬁcant differences between the two that we will discuss in the ﬁrst section of this chapter.Chapter 8 Internet Television In concluding this book. 8. we will examine what we can consider to represent an evolving industry — television delivered via the Internet. Thus. in reality they should be used to describe two different technologies. In the second section we will turn our attention to Internet television. Although the two terms can be treated as synonyms. The Internet interface either takes selected station videotapes and converts them into a sequence of IP datagrams transporting. let’s focus on the true meaning of each technology to obtain an appreciation for how they actually differ from one another. Although television delivered via the Internet represents IPTV.
an Internet television station. is not mandatory for viewing video. which was described earlier in this book. represents a private IP network that will deliver television. television. and concerts. In this section we will look at a few individual Internet television sites as well as a Web site for connecting to and viewing tens of television stations located around the globe. although desirable. Project Lightspeed. a broadband connection to the Internet. Viewing of station broadcasts on the Internet is accomplished via a media player. Probably one of the most mentioned IPTV projects is Project Lightspeed initiated by SBC Communications (which acquired AT&T and assumed its name during 2006). or Real Networks’ RealPlayer. Because media players support buffering of IP datagrams. MPEG-2 frames.178 Understanding IPTV commonly. we will conclude this chapter by examining the evolving industry represented by Internet television. the term’s intended usage is to describe the transmission of video. which in effect represents a conventional television station that also broadcasts video via an Internet connection. or provides a “dawn-to-dusk” broadcast via the Internet of the station’s over-the-air transmission.2 Internet Television From a handful of television stations viewable via the Internet a few years ago. Now that we have an appreciation for the similarities and differences of Internet television and IPTV. Apple’s QuickTime Media Player. video on demand (VOD). at a high speed that enables subscribers with an applicable set-top box to view events on a television without buffering. Now that we have a general appreciation for Internet television. such as Microsoft’s Windows Media Player. including movies. . Typically. this industry has exhibited explosive growth to the point where hundreds of stations were available for viewing during 2006. and high-speed Internet access to millions of homes. the set-top box is an integral hardware component associated with IPTV whereas the media player represents an integral software component associated with Internet television viewing. Video will be decoded by a set-top box and delivered either directly to a connected television or via a home network to a remote television. Thus. IPTV Although IPTV can be viewed as Internet television. The media player supported provides the interface required to view the stream of IP datagrams on a desktop or laptop computer. limits its support to one type of media player. 8. let’s turn our attention to IPTV.
1 The home page of NBC10.com. a 20-year veteran of the television news business. consider NBC10. Internet Broadcasting produced more than 70 television Web sites that cumulatively received more than 12 million unique visitors monthly. Figure 8.Channel4000. and the McGraw-Hill Companies.com enables visitors to view a video or read the top stories.com.Internet Television 179 Evolution Internet television dates to the mid-1990s. Its ﬁrst television station Web site. and images to present the news. which became partners of Internet Broadcasting. when Reid Johnson. Pennsylvania. www. text. founded the ﬁrm Internet Broadcasting.1 illustrates the home page of NBC10 from the morning of Figure 8. including becoming number one in TV news in 18 of the top 25 markets in the United States. its Web sites use a mixture of video. This expansion caught the attention of such media companies as the Hearst Corporation. By 2000. Although Internet Broadcasting has achieved signiﬁcant success. went online during 1996. . The success of Channel 4000 became a model for expansion into additional markets. which is the Web site operated by Internet Broadcasting in Philadelphia. For example. the Washington Post.
including different types of video. As other companies developed Web sites to broadcast video. the term “Webcasting” evolved. and other forms of audio-visual entertainment. because distant cable companies could negotiate deals that enabled television stations located in one area of the country to be carriers in a cable territory located in another portion of the country. Currently. or view images. which became known as a “super station” due to the large number of cable companies that carry its programming. NBC10 limits its support of video to Windows Media Player. Thus. In an Internet environment it becomes possible for television stations to become “global super stations” because any user connected to the Internet via an applicable high-speed connection becomes capable of viewing the features of the site. which is the manner by which television stations obtain the majority of funds for their operation. news. 2006. Advantages A conventional television station is limited by the FCC as to its broadcast power. Later. This limitation affects advertising. This term was initially used to reference the broadcasting of television programs. movies. it also becomes possible for television stations to expand their advertising base to national and international companies. which will result in the display of a series of videos by pr edeﬁned category. this newly expanded deﬁnition included music videos. the term was expanded to reference the electronic transmission of audio and video data over the Inter net in realtime in the form of streaming audio and video. the conventional television station can be considered to be limited to a speciﬁc geographic market. In addition. Thus. such as soap operas. under the “News” column on the left portion of the Web page visitors can select the “Video” entry. read the story. Thus. over the Internet. . Among the ﬁrst television stations to break the geographic barrier was WTBS in Atlanta.180 Understanding IPTV April 18. The development of satellites allowed television stations to br eak their former geographic barrier. and comedy shows. other organizations began to realize the potential of broadcasting movies and television shows. Webcasting At approximately the same time Internet Broadcasting was placing television stations on the Web. A user can elect to watch a video of the top story.
let’s turn our attention to television portals. Through the BeelineTV. To view certain stations using Windows Media Player. Currently.” “Q time. citizens located in the United States view copyrighted television programming originated in a foreign jurisdiction.com. most programming has licensing and distribution agreements that may be applicable to a geographic area or a country. If you scroll down the site’s home page.com Web site you can view television stations located in more than 20 countries.S. some legal issues must be considered. Canada’s CBC. you will note a number to the left of each television station entry.” which identiﬁes the type of media player required for viewing the station’s streaming media. whose home page is shown in Figure 8.2. will result in Windows Media . the appeals process may require several years until this issue is fully resolved. rulings indicate that copyright infringement occurs when U. One such portal is BeelineTV. you will need to run an ActiveX control. a key question is whether the station is now violating its licensing and distribution agreement. and “Media” identiﬁes Microsoft’s Windows Media Player. Looking at Figure 8. When a television station offers such programming to Internet users. Another question that warrants consideration occurs when a foreign television station obtains foreign rights to programming produced in the United States and allows Internet users in the United States to view such programming. law? Although some initial U. The BeelineTV. and from the United States. when accepted.com Web site will prompt you with an applicable message that.S. When this occurs. To the right of the station entry you will see the word “Real.2.S. Internet Television Portals One of the more recent developments in the wonderful world of Internet television is the establishment of portals that provide users with access to hundreds of Internet television stations located around the globe. including England’s BBC News. Now that we have an appreciation for the evolution of Internet television and some of its legal issues. Those legal issues are associated with copyrighted material. Here. is the foreign television Webcaster accountable for copyright infringement under U. “Real” identiﬁes Real Networks’ RealPlayer. “Q time” identiﬁes Apple Computer’s QuickTime Media Player. AFTV Movie Classics and NASA TV.” or “Media.Internet Television 181 Legal Issues Although the transmission of television Webcasting may appear to be simple. you encounter more than 35 stations listed under the “English TV” category. That number identiﬁes the Internet connection (in kilobits per second) required to view streaming video from the station.
broadband video content from major news . Figure 8. we can reasonably expect more stations to offer MPEG-4 streaming video and media players to eventually support the technology by default. it will look awkward when switching to a larger screen size.com Web site you can access more than 100 Internet television stations. As more users begin to view video over the Internet.182 Understanding IPTV Figure 8. If your codec supports MPEG-2 and the station transmits streaming video in a lowresolution format.2 From the BeelineTV. Depending on the media player’s codec.com and other portals provide access to a large amount of free content. it may or may not be a good idea to increase the screen size or change the view to full-screen mode. if your media player supports MPEG-4. there is an H. Note that from the new window in which the programming is displayed you have the option of viewing the channel schedule and doubling the screen size.264 movie station you can access to view movies on a full-screen basis with very good clarity. However.3 illustrates the window that opened after this author selected the AFTV sci-ﬁ/horror station. Other Portals Although BeelineTV. Player opening in a separate window.
Individual Internet Stations In addition to the use of a portal. Thus.israelnationaltv.com). which enables users to view press brieﬁngs and various scientiﬁc-related clips without cost. Figure 8. including subscription-only stations.3 Viewing an AFTV sci-ﬁ/horror station broadcast on the Internet. As the industry matures it will be interesting to observe the difference in the growth of advertiser-supported Internet television versus subscription-based Internet television. For example. stations and other stations can be viewed only via a subscription service. some portals now charge a monthly or annual fee to view hundreds of stations. A second example of Internet television viewing is Israel National TV (URL: www.Internet Television 183 Figure 8. you can dir ectly access various Internet television sites that may or may not be available for access via a portal. the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Web site provides a link to NASA TV.4 illustrates the home page of this .
4 The home page of IsraelNationalTV.184 Understanding IPTV Figure 8. and Internet television stations convert to H. As more capable codecs are added to media players. . interviews. Note that you can choose to view news. 8. As this occurs. which illustrates how stations can tailor a media player to satisfy their operational requirements.264-compatible streaming media. This site envelopes Windows Media Player with a series of selections and text-based news. we can reasonably expect its use to signiﬁcantly increase. evolving technology will change this situation for the better.com. Web site.3 Summary Today we are at the start of a revolution concerning the manner by which we access and view television stations connected to the Internet. Although current Internet connection speeds and media player capabilities make most Internet television viewing feel similar to viewing a modern television show on a TV set produced during the 1960s. higher speed Internet access becomes more economical and available. and other types of video as well as purchase programming. Internet television will join the ranks of other types of entertainment that on a daily basis compete for our attention.
144 802. 22–23. 140.144–145 802.11g 131–132. 178 AWG 116 B Beeline TV 181–182 Bell South 22–23. 12–13. 19. 64. 10. ADSL2) ATM PON (see APON) C Cable TV operation 9–10. 78 Billing and management server 150–151 Blockbuster 3 BPON 34–35 British Telcom Laboratories 31 Broadband access 36 Broadband PON (see BPON) Broadcast server 146–147 Broadcast transmission 18. 31 B-frame coding 74–74. 15. 46–47.11n 131–132 AT&T 6–7. 105–106 Business TV to desktop 13 A Access network 19 Active components 31 Address mask request message 99 Address mask reply message 99 Address resolution protocol (see ARP) ADSL 19.11b 130–132 802. 132 American National Standards Institute (see ANSI) American Wire Gauge (see AWG) Analog television 49–56 ANSI 25. 122–124 Carrierless amplitude phase (see CAP) CBS 38 Cell phone transmission 40 Channel 4000 179–180 Chrominance 46. 37. 80 Asymmetrical Digital Subscriber Line (see ADSL. 132 ADSL2 25–28. 51.Index 10 Base-5 118 802. 36–37. 43 CAP 24. 30–32. 66 Cinema Now 3 Cisco Systems 2–3. 120–122 AOL 39 Apple Computer 4.11a 130–132. 132 ADSL2+ 28–32. 165–173 APON 34 Archive server 148–149 Archos 3 ARP 86 Aspect ratio 59–60. 23. 136 Codec delay 42 Coding gain 27 Color hue 55 185 . 38.11 130 802. 30–32.
992.lite 25 G. 60–63 Headend server 146 High deﬁnition television (see HDTV) Home network 19.dmt 23–24 G.bis 25 G. 95–99 Information request message 98–99 . 23 Full Service Access Group (see FSAG) Full Service Access Network (see FSAN) G Gigabit Ethernet PON (see GPON) GPON 35 G. 36 DSLAM 146 DVD decoder plug-ins 161–162 Dynamic ports 101–102 Fiber-to-the-curb (see FTTC) Fiber-to-the-exchange (see FTTEx) Fiber-to-the-home (see FTTH) Fiber-to-the-neighborhood (see FTTN) Fiber-to-the-premise (see FTTP) File format 155–156. 23. 164 F Fiber-to-the-building (see FTTB) Fiber-to-the-cabinet (see FTTCb) I ICMP 88. 63 DSL 10. 45. 128–134 Horizontal line sync pulse 54 Hotzone 15 Huffman coding 65. 126 FTTP 6.186 Understanding IPTV Color saturation 55 Color reference burst 54 Colorspace conversion 66 Comcast 38. 168–170 Financial comparison 8–9 FiOS TV 7 Flash player 173–174 Fragmentation 89–90 Frame rate 80 FSAG 34 FSAN 117 FTTB 32. 159.lite.992. 46–47.3 standard 25 G. 122–124 Dolby 60.1 standard 23–24 G. 30–35. 72 H.4 standard 25 E Echo request 96 Echo reply 96 EDTV 60–62 Enhanced deﬁnition television (see EDTV) EPON 34–35 Ethernet-based PON (see EPON) ETSI Plan 997 118–119 ETSI Plan 998 118–119 European Telecommunications Standards Institute (see ETSI Plan 997. 126 FTTCb 125 FTTEx 124–125 FTTH 126–127 FTTN 6.264 81–83.992. 30–31. 68–70 Discrete multitone (see DMT) Distance learning 13–14 DMT 24–25. 23. 45. 40 Component video 53 Composite video 53–55 Constellation size 122 Convergence 42–44 Corporate communications 14 Cox communications 40 D Data link layer 86–87 Destination unreachable message 96–97 Deutsche Telecom 31 Dial-up delays 36 Digital Subscriber Line (see DSL) Digital Subscriber Line Access Multiplexer (see DSLAM) Digital television 57–63 Digital television formats 60–61 Digital video server 147 Discrete cosine transform 65.2 standard 25 G.992. Plan 998) H Ham band notching 119–120 HDTV 221. 126 FTTC 31.
64–83 Luminance 46. MPEG2. 166–172 Mobile phone television 14–15 Motion compensation 71 Motion estimation 70–71 Motion picture expert group (see MEG1.45 Optical line terminator (see OLT) Optical Network unit (see ONU) J Jitter buffer 85.138–140. 114 P PAL 50.154–165 .Index 187 Information reply message 98–99 Interlaced 51.107.140 Movie link 3–4 MPEG1 64–77. 115–135 Lossless compression 45–46 Lossy compression 45–46. 73–74 Internet 1–2 Internet Control Message Protocol (see ICMP) Internet television 177–184 Internet television portals 181–182 Intra-frame coding 72–73 iPOD 4.160 PON 31–35 Port numbers 101–103 Powerline Alliance 131–132 Private IP–based network utilization 4–5 L Last mile 19.143–145.77–81.146 MPEG4 17. 50–51.55 Parameter problem message 98 Paramount 4 Passive components 31 Passive optical network (see PON) Pay-TV 35–41 Phase Alternating Line (see PAL) Physical layer 86–87 Picture luminance 54 Picture scanning 59 Pixels 56–57 Playlist 155–156. 166 IP address ﬁelds 91–92 IP datacast 40 IP datagram 87–88 IPTV Applications 11–16 Deﬁnition 1 Delivery 105–110 Features 10–11 Home network 129–133 Impact 19–20 Market drivers 21–28 Network elements 16–20 Potential impact 16–20 TC/IP protocol suite 85–115 Television 177–184 IP/TV 2 IP video 3 IPv4 Reader 87–92 Israel National TV 183–184 iTunes 4.107 MPEG1 audio 76–77 MPEG2 17. 66 M Mean time between failure (see MTBF) Media center 143–144 Media center extender 144–145 Messenger program 15 MGM 4 Microsoft 3. 59 Inter-frame coding 71.166 MTBF 31–32 Multicast transmission 17–18 N NAT 104–105 National Television Systems Committee (see NTSC) NBC 38 Network address translation (see NAT) Network layer 88 NTSC 50–55. 12. 38. 184.108.40.206–60 O OLT 32–33.45 On–Demand video 12 ONU 32–33. 12–13. 15.107–109. MPEG4) Motorola 136. 64.
178 Public IP-based network utilization 2–3 Q QAM 220.127.116.11–61 SECAM 50.123–124 Sigma Designs 141–142 Signal to noise ratio (see S/N ratio) S/N ratio 122 SONET 120 Sony Pictures 4 Sound 60.23.173 Real time protocol (see RTP) Real time video 85 Real time transport control protocol (see RTCP) Reed–Solomon coding 26–28 Reference black level 54 Regional Bell Operating Company (see RBOC) Registered ports 102–103 Reserved IPv4 network address 104–105 Resolution 57–58 Royal Philips Electronics 140 RTCP 113–114 RTP 108–113 Set-top boxes 135–142 Shannon’s Law 27–28.188 Understanding IPTV Progressive scanning 59 Project Lightspeed 6–7. 32–33.23. 181–182 R RAID 148–150 Raw UDP 88 RBOC 22–23.63 Source quench message 97 Sprint Nextel Corporation 40 Standard deﬁnition television (see SDTV) Stored replay video 85 Subsampling 66–67 Subnet mask 94–95 Subnetting 93–95 Symbol rate 122 Synchronization 60 Synchronous digital hierarchy (see SDH) Synchronous optical network (see SONET) T Talegent 142 TCP 86. 99–104 UDP/raw 108–109 UDT/RTP 108–109 Unicast transmission 18 Universal 4 User datagram protocol (see UDP) S SBC Communications (see AT&T) Scanning 51–52 Scientiﬁc Atlanta 136.99–104 Telephone company landline erosion 22–28 Time exceeded message 98 Timeshift broadcast server 150 Time stamp request message 98 Time stamp reply message 98 Time-to-live 90 Time Warner 40 Transmission control protocol (see TCP) Transport layer 86–87. 116–124. 140 SDH 120 SDTV 21.99–105 U UDP 86–87. 132 VDSL alliance 122–123 Verizon 7.30–31.43 Real Player 4.37 .10.55 Sequential Couleur a Memoire (see SECAM) Servers 145–151 Service provider network 18–19 V VDSL 19.19.123 QoS 43 Quadrature amplitude modulation (see QAM) Quantization 67–68 Quantization error 68 Quality of service (see QoS) Quicktime 165–173.
147–148 Video-on-demand server 147–148 Video sequencing 79 Voice coding standards 42 Voice over Internet Protocol (see VoIP) VoIP 5.39 Webcasting 180–182 Well known ports 102 Windows Media Player 4.138–139.Index 189 Vertical sync pulse 55 Vertical synchronization 51. 181–182 Windows Media Player 9 154–157 Windows Media Player 10 157–165 Wired Ethernet 130 Wireless Ethernet 19.21–22 W Warner Brothers 4.130–131 Y Yahoo 15 .55 Very-high-bit-rate Digital Subscriber Line (see VDSL) Video chat 15–16 Video compression 45–48 Video content 2–3 Video decoder checkup utility 162–163 Video distribution network 44–48 Video headend 16–18 Video-on-demand 107.
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