updated 10:30 am EDT, Mon September 11, 2006
DVB-H Mobile Television
Mobile television is a common sight on the streets of Japanese and Korean cities, but in North America video has been limited to pre-recorded clips. A suite of announcements Monday indicate that the technology will soon spread much further. The DVB-H format, or Digital Video Broadcast - Handheld, is capable of streaming video at a full frame rate despite the relatively limited bandwidth of celullar networks thanks to extremely efficient compression: mobile video chipsets such as NVIDIA's GoForce series can decode the video signal in a way which is virtually impossible for the actual cellphone processor itself. The technology saw its debut in mid-summer during the Italian release of the Samsung P910 (pictured); today, NVIDIA announced that US customers would get their first DVB-H mobile television through the HTC Forseer smartphone set to launch by the end of 2006 through the Modeo service. A parallel announcement was made by Motorola and Nokia today, which are partnering together to ensure that handsets from both companies can play DVB-H videos from each other's devices and services. The two cellphone makers expect services using their own phones to either deploy or begin testing in North America before the end of the year.