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Qligent Applies Cloud Monitoring Platform to Changing Over-The-Air TV Landscape

April 5, 2016

MELBOURNE, Florida, April 5, 2016 — Qligent, a specialist in cloud-based, enterprise-level media monitoring and analysis, has a message for North America broadcasters facing repack: Be prepared to understand the impact that UHF channel sharing or moving to VHF will have on your headend distribution, signal throughput and program quality.

“The FCC-driven spectrum auction may take another 20 RF channels from TV broadcasters, which would leave only 17 UHF and 12 VHF DTV channels,” said Ted Korte, COO, Qligent. “That compression will invite congestion, particularly in large to major markets. In many cases, broadcasters remaining in the UHF spectrum will share the same 6MHz RF channel they use today. Until ATSC 3.0 migration happens, that means two broadcasters sharing 19MB of over-the-air bandwidth for HD/SD channel delivery, using MPEG-2 compression.”

Broadcasters will have similar challenges moving from UHF to VHF, which will present significant infrastructure changes around transmitters and antennas. Both the UHF channel-sharing and UHF-to-VHF scenarios require establishing a headend strategy for bitrate optimization, distribution, coverage, and uptime to deliver the best possible quality of experience.


At the 2016 NAB Show (April 18-21, Las Vegas Convention Center), Qligent will demonstrate how its Vision cloud monitoring platform can provide detailed visibility into channel-sharing configurations, as well as optimization of bandwidth-challenged VHF and UHF scenarios. With self-hosted and managed service deployment options, Vision gives broadcasters a flexible platform to monitor, analyze and troubleshoot signal health and program quality throughout every step of air chain—from the studio to headend, and onto the last mile.

Vision’s pay-as-you-go OPEX model is an attractive option for broadcasters in channel sharing scenarios, whether deployed via a self-hosted or monitoring-as-a-service (MaaS) configuration. The latter option, branded as Qligent’s Oversight MaaS platform, removes the monitoring onus from TV stations while ensuring broadcasters remain compliant with service-level agreements. Qligent’s 24/7 team of skilled experts support all QoS and QoE-related monitoring tasks offsite, freeing broadcasters to focus on multichannel programming strategies and technology transitions—both of which may include infrastructure changes associated with ATSC 3.0 readiness.

“The ATSC 3.0 standard will bring greater spectral efficiencies to broadcasters via increased bandwidth in the area of 25MB, and the latest compression technology—both of which will be of great appeal to broadcasters in channel-sharing agreements,” said Korte. “There will certainly be a gap between the end of the repack process—expected to take a minimum of three years—and any transition to ATSC 3.0. However, that migration will require infrastructure changes to support ATSC 3.0’s native IP transport and connectivity, and the various new business opportunities like 4K delivery, targeted advertising, second screen experiences and mobile broadcasting that will come with the transition. As a cloud-based platform with native IP layer monitoring, Vision is ideally suited to help broadcasters seamlessly adapt to changing these broadcast environments.”

Qligent will demonstrate Vision and its benefits for over-the-air TV monitoring, analysis and troubleshooting at Booth N1011.