DVB-H near collapse in Germany, authorities demand licence back

German media authorities have insisted that the mobile TV operator, Mobile 3.0, immediately return its DVB-H licence. The Commission for Approval and Supervision of the Media Authorities (ZAK) stated that Mobile 3.0 had failed to implement its overall concept and had not succeeded in signing any sales or marketing partners.

The chairman of the commission, Henry Thomas Lang, maintained the licence should be returned by the end of this month when it might be possible to restart DVB-H transmissions. The likelihood of a new company wanting to enter the DVB-H arena has improved since Germany agreed to a new legal situation--Rundfunkstaatsvertrag, or national broadcast framework--which makes possible the issuing of a national licence rather than state-by-state licences.

Mobile 3.0 launched DVB-H test transmissions in four large German cities, but no commercial service followed with reports that shareholders were unhappy with the prospects and wanted to pull out of the venture.

The situation was not helped by mobile operators launching competitive DVB-T broadcasts, having failed themselves to win DVB-H licences, and not wanting to share revenues with Mobile 3.0.

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