UltraHD Appears to Hit Setback in France

The future of UltraHD TV, on DVB-T2, does not look bright in France. According to Barry Flynn of Inside Satellite TV, the CSA, the French regulator, has been cagey about the platform. Few of the responses to a survey in January, dealing with UltraHD TV, have been published – and those that have deal with HD, with no mention on the higher resolution.

None of the responses to one of the two main scenarios from the January consultation have been published: to consolidate all of France’s DTT channels into five multiplexes, and to run the sixth mux in DVB-T2/HEVC. Such a move would enable the early launch of an all-UltraHD DTT multiplex in France.

A second consultation, underway now, aims to gather views from TV stakeholders ‘in the light of the possible publication of a request for proposals for the terrestrial spectrum that will become available [in April 2016]’.

The consultation proposes a change in the law to adjust the proportion of each multiplex taken up by a DTT channel. Currently, SD MPEG-4 channels are allowed about a tenth of the capacity on a multiplex. This would continue to be the case after MPEG-2 switch-off, but HD MPEG-4 channels would be allowed just under a fifth.