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The number of people in the world working or living abroad, displaced, refugee or from multiple backgrounds is increasing rapidly. Indeed, having access to information from other cultures is vital for any world citizen. Up to now, only the major broadcasters have been able to address their expatriate franchise, and then mostly in adjacent regions only. We call this type of broadcasting content 'My Home Town Television'.
My Hometown TV project is all about delivering television programming to the homes of expatriate groups.
DiviTel delivers the promise of home town video by satellite and the internet. Satellite will be used both as a distribution medium, to get the broadcasters material to the service providers, and as a delivery platform for internet and DVB-based video. This solution creates a cost-effective and smart way for (third world) broadcasters to deliver content to their audiences across the world (mainly in Europe) by satellite.
Key issues in the project were the technical feasibility, usability and the consumer market for this type of content.
By creating the core environment for broadcasters to deliver their content to European markets, DiviTel opened up new business opportunities on an international level.
The MHT-TV project will create a solution for a total satellite distribution system taking care of the technical aspects as well as the software, administration, service and commercial aspects of the products and services distributed. The project has designed and prototyped a generic, turnkey scalable studio solution for satellite play out and delivery.
The system allows for several input streams (multiple feeds) to be edited, combined or otherwise manipulated. A simple uplink station distributes the signal to potentially multiple points on earth. The signal can be managed and redistributed locally as well. Our solution will enable users to switch between 'off line work' versus 'real time work'. This will ensure that broadcasters around the world can address worldwide markets through the most appropriate distribution methods, be it DTH, cable or IP-streaming.
The pilot system consists of a high end PC with a professional capture card, large storage and professional MPEG-4 coding software. For scheduling and sending, a highly efficient professional application is used in the background.
|The proprietary software developed by DiviTel for capture, editing, and scheduling for distribution is highly useable and efficient due to the graphical user interface that is represented on each one of the three screens. This enables broadcasters to contribute and send their MHT program feed with a relatively low knowledge barrier. For the project, DiviTel also prepared a PC-based reception and play out solution.
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The project has created a prototype environment that was tested in a pilot. It encompasses the central elements of the broadcasting value chain for this type of content.
Around 15 pilot users received a program from a broadcaster in their country of origin for the two month pilot period. They provided feedback through questionnaires and interviews on the precieved quality, usability and added value of the programming.
The pilot system for the My Home Town broadcaster solution including a proprietary graphical user interface was finalised and accepted by ESA. The pilot system consisting of a high end server with a professional capture card, large storage and professional MPEG-4 coding software was installed at Curacao, Dutch Antilles and content was transmitted over satellite to the European continent, where pilot customers have been able to watch content from 'home'.
Market research and business planning as well as research into legal matters were carried out. Also other applications for the platform than originally intended were identified. This clearly shows that the ESA Telecom SME programme can be a real enabler for further commercial development to a medium sized company like DiviTel.
The final solution produced is generally described at: www.divitel.com