Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Setting up a new TV distribution systems for companies such as telephone companies involves many complicated systems and skills. IPTV operators need to obtain good content sources, transport the content to headends, and delivering it to viewers. To do this, IPTV systems use a substantial amount of costly equipment. During the Set Top Box 2010 conference, Vern Smith from Echostar explained to me that it is possible for an IPTV system operator to quickly setup an IPTV system with limited capital expense by using an IPTV system that uses satellite TV signals that are ready for redistribution. The operator installs a satellite receiver in their distribution system (the virtual headend) which receives and simply redistributes the satellite signals (no need for an expensive head end decoding and switching system). In addition to reducing the initial system equipment cost and simplifying the system, Echostar can also help the IPTV broadcaster to obtain and negotiate licenses for TV content that can be distributed in their system.