In a significant convergence of wireless and broadcast technologies, DISH Network on Sunday revealed that it has successfully completed the trial of transmission and reception of the new broadcast ATSC 3.0 standard as part of the Spectrum Consortium’s “Next Gen” deployment project in Dallas.
Using its 700 MHz E Block spectrum (former broadcast TV channel 56), DISH deployed on Spectrum Co.’s Garland, Tex., Single Frequency Network (SFN) site as part of the country’s first major market conversion to the Next Gen broadcast standard.
DISH EVP/Corporate Development Tom Cullen said, “This trial helps us not only pursue opportunities with ‘Next Gen’ TV technology, but also helps us to identify synergies with our Internet of Things and future 5G plans—for example, broadcasting data to connected cars.”
DISH’s 700 MHz E Block is uniquely positioned to provide coverage to 95% of the license areas in the U.S. Additionally, DISH’s uplink spectrum assets could be used to provide a unique, dedicated reverse link channel for broadcast data applications.
Spectrum Co. President John Hane said, “DISH’s involvement underscores that ATSC 3.0 is much more than the most transformational upgrade of broadcast television technology in history: It’s the foundation of a robust new ecosystem of advanced services. The wireless economy is quickly outgrowing one-size-fits-all solutions. We look forward to working with DISH, broadcasters and others to bring exciting new capabilities online.”
DISH joins Nexstar Media Group, Sinclair Broadcast Group, Univision and American Tower in the Dallas SFN project.
Broadcast Group and American Tower Corp., “working within a memorandum of understanding that will help shape future joint activity,” deployed and are commissioning multiple sites that will support multiple channels as part of this SFN network.
Two 6 MHz channels have been committed by market broadcasters (Univision and Sinclair partner Cunningham Broadcasting Corp.) to Next Gen service transmission infrastructure that will also accommodate DISH’s licensed E-Block spectrum.
“DISH is participating in this important Spectrum Co. project, and will be able to share in and benefit from the understanding that evolves during the operation of this pilot deployment,” the company says.
Vendor partners in the Dallas “Next Gen” rollout include Hitachi COMARK (transmitters), ATEME (encoders), Enesys (gateway resource scheduler), Digicap (ESG and signaling), Dielectric (band-pass-filters, transmission line and antennae), Monroe Electronics (EAS Digital Alert Systems), TestTree (monitoring and control), Acrodyne Services (integration), ONE Media (configuration and design) and Progira (SFN coverage modeling).