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The DVB reviews its processes for a new age

In taking on the chairmanship of the DVB Project from Phil Laven, Peter MacAvock said: “I care greatly about what happens to this organisation.

It has achieved many important things, and it can continue to do so.”

MacAvock had been executive director of DVB for 14 years until he became head of delivery, platforms and services with the EBU eight years ago. That continues as his day job: how has DVB changed since his first tenure?

“Due to mergers and acquisitions and tough economic times there are fewer members. Back in 1993 DVB was formed to develop the technical standards for analogue to digital transition, but we are now into a different set of problems.”

Job one will be to assess whether the long-established DVB process of setting its standards remains sharp to the task. “The broadcast industry is changing rapidly, and is DVB still as relevant in terms of its processes?” asked MacAvock.

The many phases of 4K have been slowed by endless “complex conversations” but then MacAvock is clear about why it is best to wait: “DVB is the place it is going to happen. Other organisations have quite simply not been able to come to a consensus concerning the detailed specs.”

The things on MacAvock’s radar are OTT, open source software and the accelerating modernisation of the whole pay-TV sector. The DVB is already running a study mission on VR.

“We are trying to understand what the technical issues are associated with VR, to see what useful work could be done. VR is certainly at the forefront of discussion among DVB members,” he added.