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Downingtown, PA
reply to ITALIAN926

Re: October is here.. Are those dozen HD channels coming?!?!

said by ITALIAN926:

Is MPEG4 even necessary?. Program the least viewed HD channels to start up as an IPTV streaming channel. It would take a second to start, it wont be instantaneous, but THESE are the less popular channels afterall.

It wouldn't be necessary... if they would go IP. I think that's the issue. Verizon is out of bandwidth for TV. They need to do SOMETHING to increase bandwidth if they want to add more channels. Their plan all along, I believe, has been IP. If they were to migrate channels to IP, then yes, they would free up bandwidth for new channels. But that plan got shelved, for some reason.

So, what's left? There are a couple options:

1) Higher mpeg-2 compression on some channels. They tried this and it got such negative response that the quashed the idea.

2) MPEG-4 conversion. Since mpeg-4 is so much more efficient than MPEG-2 at compression, and since Verizon is already getting some feeds in as MPEG-4, they can send out those feeds in MPEG-4, without affecting PQ at all, and free up some 50% of the bandwidth.

3) GHz QAM. This is a possiblity too, although, given the limitations of the hardware that they're using, I have to think this is probably the most expensive option (basically they would have to replace all the STBs/DVRs out there, as well as ONTs, and if they're going to replace all STBs/DVRs anyway... why not just go with option 2 - mpeg-4?

So, yeah, if they went IP they wouldn't need MPEG-4, but since they seem to be reluctant to go IP... their other options are limited if they want to expand bandwidth.

Melville, NY

1GHz RF plant isn't even being discussed.....

Downingtown, PA

said by nycdave:

1GHz RF plant isn't even being discussed.....

Yes, I realize that it's not. I just put it out there as one of the options that are available if they want to expand bandwidth without going IP. My point is - their options are limited, to answer the question that Italian asked, which is: why do you need mpeg-4 if you have IP? My answer was: you don't need MPEG-4... but if you also shelve the idea of IP... what else is there? So I listed them. There are probably a couple others, I guess. For one thing, they could 'cable-ize' their channel line-up, and scrap the idea of a common channel foot-print across all markets. That would allow some markets to use QAM that's currently off limits because it's reserved for things like locals and RSNs for a particular market. I don't see that as realistic either, nor do I see it as desirable.

MPEG-4 is mentioned so consistently because it's probably the biggest bang for your buck, in terms of options. Much of the equipment in the market can already handle it. That seems to be the most obvious next move for Verizon, again if they want to expand bandwidth for TV.