Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) is a rapidly growing technology for the delivery of digital television service and other media services over a secure, end-to-end operator managed broadband IP data network. IPTV broadly encompasses a rich functionality that ranges from the acquisition, encoding and decoding, access control and management of video content, to the delivery of digital TV, movies on demand, viewing of stored programming, personalized program guides, and a host of interactive and multimedia services. IPTV technology, integrated with the higher speed digital subscriber line (DSL) access technologies (ADSL2,ADSL2+ and VDSL), offers attractive revenue-generating opportunities for the telecom service providers, enabling them to compete effectively in the “triple play” market space with the delivery of voice, data and video services to residential and business customers.
What is IPTV ? IPTV (Internet Protocol Television) describes a system where a digital television service is delivered using the Internet Protocol(IP) over a network infrastructure, which may include delivery by a broadband connection. IPTV enables the broadcaster to deliver high-quality video in conjunction with many advanced features like VoD (Video on Demand), games, Interactivity and Personalized services. Following are example of IPTV > Competitive TV services over managed IP networks with two way connection > Broadcast Television > Video on Demand
What is not IPTV ? IPTV is distinctly different from “Internet Video” that simply allows users to watch videos, like movie previews and web-cams, over the Internet in a “best effort” fashion with no end-to-end service management and quality of service considerations. Following are not IPTV >Video streaming over internet >Watching TV on your PC(Personal Computer) >Best Efforts video services >Unproven Business models for media and TV serivces
Why IPTV ? Consumers always want more and higher quality. Nowadays most of TV are analog with one way data transmission and limited channel. IPTV provides all digital, two way connected, unlimited channels, integrated(DRV,HDTV,PIPs, VoD) and personalized TV. IPTV enhances the TV offer and delivers in a new way to provide better experience to watch TV in a simple, personalized and in a advanced way. Simple EPG(Electronic Program Guide) that allows easy navigation, quick program informations,PIP (Picture in Picture) and PPV(Pay Per view) capabilities. Personalized IPTV enables you to personalized your view, profile and events. You can attach your TV with other devices such as Digital cameras to view personal pictures or photos on your TV. You can also personalize your profile, parental controls, television and account settings.
Advanced With the help of EPG your DVR or PVR can be scheduled to make recordings of your programs either once or on a recurring basis. Get live TV notifications such as Caller ID, SMS and e-mail notification while you watch TV. It also provides program search capabilities. To enhance the quality IPTV provides following advanced features >Advanced Multimedia Program Guide >Integrated Broadcast, VOD and DVR >Fast scrolling & navigation >Live picture-in- picture. >Channel slide show >Software-based tuning >Advanced Video Applications with multiple PIP(Picture-In-Picture) >Instant channel changing with richer navigation >Quick and Responsive EPG for HDTV and SDTV >Integrate Web based services >Cross device applications and services
IPTV Delivery Model IPTV use broadband path for content delivery from CP (Content Provider) to Viewer. Infrastructure for content delivery is based on Business Model used by CSP (Content Service Provider) and ISP (Internet Service Provider). In a very simple level content deliver from CSP via ISP(Service Provider) and Access network to Home network as shown in diagram
IPTV : A Marriage of Collaborative Technologies “ IPTV is not a single technique or technology” Most of IPTV Solutions are based on a combination of standard and proprietary technologies. To implement IPTV end to end solution there are several components involved, based on the business model. Major components are Head-end (encoders and streamers) , VoD Server, CAS system and DRM agent, IP service provider and access network, IP based middleware, DSL modems and IRDs. IPTV : Review of Home Equipments/Technology With increase of IPTV services there is a heavy shift in the home equipments and technology. IPTV replaces the standard TV with advanced HDTV and IP based or Hybrid Set top box. IPTV enables you to do multimedia home networking. IPTV : Review of Access Network/Technology The Access Network is the path from the Service Provider to the viewer. Sometimes referred to as “last mile”, viewer can be connect to Service Provider in many ways using various technologies and medium. Telecom service providers use DSL (digital subscriber line) to make path till consumer/ viewer. They can also use fiber optical technology like PON (passive optical networking) to reach them. IPTV networks path (Access Network) will use variants of Asymmetrical DSL (ADSL) and Very‐high‐speed DSL (VDSL) to provide the required bandwidth to IPTV services. The service provider will place a IP based device (like a DSL modem or IP Based STB) at the customer end to make connection and deliver contents.
IPTV : Transport Protocol for IPTV There are many protocols are involved in delivering IPTV media playout. Following diagram show the transport protocols which are involved in IPTV media playout delivery.
IPTV : Headend Equipments/Technology IPTV Headend infrastructure is very similar to Digital TV Headend. It is composed of MPEG Encoder, Streamer, CAS Headend, VoD (Video on Demand) Server, EMS, EPG Server and so on. TV Headend provides MPEG2 or MPEG4 Live TV contents to STB. IPTV Headend receives, decode and decrypts video, audio and data content from a variety of sources, such as satellites, terrestrial, studio and storage media and convert it through compression techniques into IP multicast encapsulated MPEG streams. Encoder, the core part of Headend, implements real-time encoding and transcoding of MPEG2 and MPEG4 through the hardware or software component based on business model. Basic components of IPTV solutions are shown in diagram
IPTV : Middleware IPTV Middleware acts as the IPTV core platform. It implements IPTV by providing TV-Portal/EPG, user managment, interactive service, channel/package and program together with pay TV solutions. The middleware provides API interfaces to integrate with the other components and deliver IPTV services in a large scale and faster way. In addition, it integrates with VOD system, Headend, CA/DRM, STB and the network realizing automatic service deployment and user access control Content Security CAS - Conditional Access System CAS (Conditional Access System) is just for decision making when the stream should be play or not at the subscriber requested. So, CA decides all about just display or not the requested stream just after the subscriber changes channel DRM - Digital Right Management DRM (Digital Right Management) is for the managing the life cycle of the given digital media. So, the DRM can manage the given media on conversion to other CODEC, edit of some or all part of the given media, re-distribute to other device or other users, playing time or duration of the given media, transfer the playing rights to other users, etc
Cp - Copy Protection CP (Copy Protection) controls only when the user request copy to other storage, read and conversion via other CODEC, or re-transferring to other networked location. Sometimes it can protect even from the Analog Hole Service Creation Video on demand - VoD Video on demand (VOD), enable you to watch video which you want to watch. Video-on-Demand is an ideal application for broadband IP networks. It provides entertainment-on-demand by taking advantage of the network's two-way communication capability. IP-based VOD systems are commonly distributed to make efficient use of broadband IP infrastructures such as DSL. In these environments it is important to reassure content owners that their content is protected, both while in transit over the backbone and while sitting on remote VOD server installations
Interactivity and T-commerce Interactive television allows viewer to interact with television content i.e. there is two way connection with Content provider and viewer. Generally It is known as iTV. T-commerce enables you to buy products from TV. T-commerce comprises TV shopping, Direct response TV, Travel shopping and Interactive TV applications Follow Me TV IPTV enables user to have same experience anywhere as they have in home while watching TV. IPTV allows users to store their personal preferences at Service Provider end so that they can use any where. They can also share their personal preferences with others. Collaborative/Shared Viewing IPTV enables you to share viewing between digital home equipments. IPTV allows you to do Home Networking i.e. you can connect your any device like DVD player, STB, VCR, Digital Cams, PC or any other devices with your TV using IP to share or store content between them.
IPTV : Challenges Most of the Television industry is based on analog or receive analog signals. Broadcasters have invested billions of dollar on analog infrastructures. Changing the infrastructure from Analog to IP based digital infrastructure is hard, expensive and time consuming but sure “Better TV “ IPTV will come and dominate the entertainment market in coming years. IPTV will grow in coming future because of its powerful strengths, like personalized and two way connectivity. IPTV managed by a Service Provider will dominate in the delivery of IP-based video consumption for at least the next decade due to quality, Integration and economic values. Eventually the boundaries will blur due to Bandwidth limitations and increases Improved Internet Quality of Services QoS.
IPTV Standards IPTV solutions are based on a combination of standard and proprietary technologies. There is no existing standard which cover all IPTV needs but there are multiple standards which could fulfill certain requirement of IPTV. MPEG : MPEG standards can be used for Content Encoding, Streaming and delivering. MPEG-21. DSL-Forum : For remote management protocol TR-069 and for Qos TR-098 can be used. CEA (Consumer Electronic Association) and DLNA (Digital Living Networks Alliance) : defines some standards for home equipments. And DVB standards are used for delivering the contents. There are other standardization bodies which are doing efforts for IPTV like, The IPTV Interoperability Forum/ Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (IIF/ATIS). ITU-T IPTV Focus Group formed Apr 13th, 2006 to coordinate the IPTV global standardization efforts. Strong push from Korea with Telecommunications Technology Association (TTA), China with Communication Standards Association (CCSA), and Japan with Association of Radio Industries and Businesses (ARIB)
What is Next : IPTV NGN IPTV with NGN is a future of IPTV. A Next-Generation Network (NGN) can be describe as a telecommunications packet-based network that handles heavy traffic (such as voice, data, and multimedia). NGN architecture enables content providers to deliver their heavy media content across the network. It allows them to move beyond IPTV/Multimedia to develop and deliver a various integrated media services to Multimedia Home Networks it also provide unparalleled linkages among the network, middleware and video/IPTV services. Summary/Conclusion IPTV enables broadband service providers provide the “triple play” to users, open opportunity to takeover TV market and earn money. On the other hand viewer will get advanced and on demand entertainment. An IPTV offers you a advanced multi channel high definition TV (HDTV) as well as on demand entertainment. IPTV technology promises to give better and more contents available, Because of two way connection between viewer and service provider will know the views personal preferences and entertain them accordingly. IPTV Middleware providers gives focus on making more content available to viewers, easy to use and portable solutions.