With the confusion in the UK over terrestrial spectrum, the HD Masters 2007 conference (June 25-26) could not be more timely. It seems Ofcom is determined to auction off analogue bandwidth to the highest bidders after the UK's analogue switch-off. This is despite a vigorous campaign from the HDforALL consortium that backs the addition of HD on the Freeview platform, and highly vocal backing from the likes of Mark Thompson (BBC DG) and Michael Grade (ITV CEO), writes Chris Forrester.
HD Masters 2007 will be covering terrestrial HD and the availability of spectrum at the time when Ofcom still has its 'Digital Dividend Review' underway. Whilst there is a recent sense that Ofcom's position was moderating in favour of satisfying network broadcaster's requests, delegates will also know that at the same time Shaun Woodward, the UK government's broadcasting minister, has very recently said that there would be no special treatment for terrestrial networks seeking gifted capacity for HD transmissions, and expressed a view that mobile TV was more important.
Greg Bensberg, Ofcom's principal advisor on broadcasting, and Simon Fell, ITV's controller/emerging technologies (and an enthusiastic supporter for HD on Freeview) will be amongst those discussing this in-depth at HD Masters 2007. Other expert speakers will also debate this hottest of hot topics, and whether the proposed Freesat plan, backed by Britain's public broadcasters, can fill this gap.
Just Announced: An exclusive lunchtime SMPTE Standards Workshop hosted by Jim Wilkinson. There are few people in the industry who know more about SMPTE standards for television than Jim Wilkinson and he will lead the delegates through the myriad of HD standards so they have a thorough overview. This session is vital for anyone involved in the development, specification, procurement or maintenance and operation of HD equipment.
Held at the prestigious Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) conference centre right in the heart of London on June 25/26, HD Masters 2007 has been created by CMPi and is a co-presented by TVBEurope, BKSTS and SMPTE.