EBU @ IBC 2010

Visitors to this year’s EBU stand at IBC (10.D21) were treated to demonstrations showing the depth of media technology innovation and experience amongst EBU Members.

3DTV was a major technology innovation on display at IBC. EBU Members and staff have been familiar with this technology since the 1980s, and EBU leads part of the DVB’s current work in this domain. But much remains to be learnt. How can we build 3D into a modern production chain at reasonable cost? What are the production grammar issues for 3DTV? Are the future systems beyond stereoscopic 3D viable? What is the impact of viewing stereoscopic 3DTV for long periods? The EBU’s work has endeavoured to address many of these questions to ensure that the viewers' interests are best served by this new and exciting technology.

To aid the assessment of HDTV systems, the EBU has produced a number of test sequences shot in 1080p/50 which were available for download at IBC ‘10. 'Barrier-free' access to TV and radio and multimedia remains an important dimension when planning digital and hybrid techniques in production and distribution. Representing public service broadcasters, the EBU gives this domain a high priority and this year’s IBC saw access services demonstrations from the BBC, RAI, DTV4ALL and NHK - helping broadcasters address the needs of those with disabilities.

Analogue TV switch-off is on the horizon for many European countries, and Hybrid Broadcast Broadband systems are being deployed now by broadcasters, consumer electronics vendors and IPTV networks. It’s an exciting time for the innovations, and IRT, RAI and others demonstrated some of the HBB options for TV broadcasters. Radio is also critically important, and hybrid techniques will have just as far-reaching impact on the radio stations of the future: With the help of Canadian Communications Research Centre and Global Radio, EBU showed an entire radio production chain broadcasting using some of the major digital radio standards and offering hybrid functionality all for modest capital investment.

Another important issue is that of 'loudness'. The EBU has been successful in bringing together broadcasters and the audio industry and this has led to a Recommendation that  promises to bring real benefits to the viewer/listener. Understanding the impact of the work was the topic of regular presentations on the EBU stand. It was something no broadcaster could afford to miss.

EBU is a reference point for industry professionals seeking to understand the details behind the headlines in industry developments. Our remit is to build the communities of industry professionals and to bring tangible benefits to the broadcasting consumer. With 3DTV, access services, HBB on radio and TV and our work with loudness, EBU remains at the centre of media innovation.


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