Rough going as EU declares DVB-H as mobile TV standard

While the EU has stated that DVB-H will now be added to the official list of standards, support is far from unanimous within the member states, as some call for 'technology neutrality', with DVB-H being no more than a non-mandatory standard among other options.

Despite these rumblings, the EU Commissioner for the Information Society and Media, Viviane Reding, has called for all 27 members of the EU to back the move. She claims that it provides broadcasters, content creators, service providers and handset manufacturers the certainty they need to begin rolling out mobile TV services across the continent from next year onwards.

Reding commented that Europe risks losing its competitive edge unless it moves fast. "South Korea has a mobile TV penetration rate of 10 percent while Italy, the EU's most advanced market, has less than 1 percent."

DVB-H already has the backing of Nokia, Motorola, Philips, Ericsson and Samsung, as well as Vodafone, O2 and T-Mobile, and has been commercially launched in Italy and Finland and was recently trialled in Ireland by O2.

However, there are other technology alternatives, such as MediaFlo developed by Qualcomm. The company has been lobbying for Europe to adopt a technology-driven approach based on whatever proves to be most superior. Verizon in the US has already launched a MediaFlo service, with other North American operators committed to follow.

For more on this : The Register and xinhuanet