Leading the pack with eMBMS

Staff writer
21 Jul 2015

Most Innovative Video Service Project

KT, Olleh TV Mobile

Last year's winner:N/A
CEO: Chang-Gyu Hwang
Business segments:Wireless/LTE, fixed-line, broadband, media (IPTV, satellite TV)
Key stats (end of 2014):

Consolidated operating revenues of 23.4 trillion won ($21 billion), down 1.6%; Net loss of 965.5 billion won; 10.8 million LTE subscribers, 5.9 million IPTV subscribers

Look at any data traffic forecast for the next five years, and you’ll see a common theme: video is already a key driver of data traffic, and will only get bigger. In the mobile segment alone, conservative forecasts expect that over half of mobile data traffic will come from video before 2020.

That’s why Telecom Asia created the Most Innovative Video Service Project ”this year, and our inaugural winner is KT for its Olleh TV Mobile service, powered by “evolved MBMS” (eMBMS), a.k.a. LTE Broadcast.

Some 20 operators worldwide are currently trialing eMBMS, but KT was the first to introduce live commercial services with it. Olleh TV Mobile officially kicked off service in late January 2014 via network equipment provide by Samsung. The service was initially offered to owners of Samsung’s Galaxy Note 3 via a software upgrade.

LTE Broadcast has the advantage of being a relatively simple upgrade for any LTE operators, because it’s already built into the 3GPP standard and doesn’t require any new spectrum or chipsets. It also allows cellcos to efficiently send multiple video streams to viewers simultaneously.

But while most other operators envision LTE Broadcast applied to things like live sporting events (i.e. providing live multi-angle video streams of the event to fans in the stadium), KT has taken a straight linear broadcast approach, offering two HD channels from its IPTV service (as well as VOD). That’s a strategy it could arguably afford to take, as Korea is one of the few markets where mobile broadcast TV has been relatively successful in terms of uptake, with some 25 million people regularly using the country’s two mobile broadcast TV systems.

Judges’ comment

“In a world where other operators are still trialing LTE-Broadcast, KT has already moved ahead with a full commercial launch. Whether others follow KT’s example remains to be seen, but they get points for blazing the trail.”


Telecom Asia Awards 2015 Winners:

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