The task force results had already been available and discussed quite a bit, so all I see new here is the list of companies who have responded to the request for proposals. That list is pretty long which is somewhat encouraging that so many companies have ideas. My own feeling is that the current system still isn't good enough so some compatible enhancements would be nice.
I am concerned about the request for enhancements for mobile applications, though. I don't think mobile is possible unless they reduce the payload somewhat and I see that as a threat to HDTV. There is a definate tradeoff between reception robustness and payload. In order to provide robust mobile reception, I think it is unlikely they would be able to carry the high payloads we HDTV advocates want (19+ Mbps in 6 MHz).
Therefore we really need to ask ourselves if the need for mobile outweighs the need to carry as many bits as possible. We have been fortunate that the current standard allows a pretty high bitrate, but it comes at the expense of occasionally difficult indoor and mobile reception. I don't want that to change and I think we all need to carefully watch these developments.
DBS Consumer Guide Author
[This message has been edited by Rich Peterson (edited 04-17-2001).]
This begins to make me think that HDTV is in a sense being held hostage by those who threaten to kill it, if "mobile enhancements" and other special interest agendas are not satisfied. It's akin to congressional bills that have pork barrel trade-offs tied to their coattails.
I'm just cynical enough to believe there are more than a few behind closed door meetings of those who think quality TV is wasted on what they perceive as the great unwashed masses. Why give them something they won't appreciate, when there's so much money to be made with a business model that foregoes HDTV? Of course, these are the same people who'd spray paint the Sistine Chapel lime green if they could make a buck off it...
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