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5G test site for TV broadcasting in southern Germany

A 5G test site for broadcasting is being set up in the Bavarian Oberland region of Germany as part of the Bavarian research project ‘5G Today’. Under the leadership of the Institute for Broadcast Technology (IRT), project partners Kathrein and Rohde & Schwarz are investigating large-scale TV broadcasts in the Further evolved Multimedia Broadcast Multicast Service (FeMBMS) mode over 5G networks.

Wendelstein transmitter, Bavaria
Wendelstein transmitter, Bavaria

Wendelstein transmitter, Bavaria

Wendelstein transmitter, Bavaria
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The project is supported by associated partners Telefónica Germany and Bayerischer Rundfunk, the Bavarian state broadcaster who is operating the 5G FeMBMS broadcast network as a test site at its transmitter sites.

The new 5G network standard is a key technology for the future when vehicles become highly automated and devices are networked with each other in the Internet of Things. 5G also offers great potential for efficient distribution of media content. The introduction of 5G could open up a worldwide market with millions of smartphones and tablets acting as potential TV receivers able to combine live TV services, media libraries, social networks and many other media services. With the cooperation of European broadcasters and industry players, international standardization work to enable efficient broadcasting in large 4G and 5G networks was completed in June 2017.

First tests at the end of 2018

Large and smaller transmitter cells are combined to create a large coverage area. The first test broadcasts using TV signals are expected to take place at the end of 2018. They will be simultaneously broadcast on channel 56 from the BR's Wendelstein station and other locations in the Munich area. Until then, components for transmission and reception will be developed and installed, and theoretical studies and preliminary investigations will take place.

The 5G Today research project will be funded by the Bavarian Research Foundation over the course of 28 months.

Posted by Chris Dickinson, technology journalist and editor of the Always On blog. February 27, 2018.

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