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D-Book 12.5: DTT Requirements for Interoperability


The first terrestrial television service to launch in the world requirements for interoperability were set out by industry in the DTG D-Book in 1996. This exceptional cross-industry collaboration continues to reflect innovation in technology and market needs with a new annual edition. It is uniquely implemented across the entire distribution chain, from playout through to the television, set-top box or recorder.

Principally, and in the interests of international harmonisation, the D-Book references international technical standards. Where these are unavailable or not yet stable, the DTG publishes full UK technical requirements in advance of contribution where appropriate of these to the relevant international standards development organisation by the DTG or one of its members. Where it is later possible to reference an ETSI or other standard in subsequent editions the specific D-Book section will be simplified.

As a set of critical implementation guidelines, the D-Book ensures that there is a wide choice of consumer electronics devices available in the market from a range of international manufacturers.

DTG Testing is an independent industry test facility that allows manufacturers to have prototype products verified for interoperability against the D-Book. DTG Testing supports the consumer electronics sector by ensuring device interoperability at the prototype stage. It continues this support when receivers are sold by testing new services across receivers in the DTG Zoo; a fully connected and operational receiver collection.

As the complexity of the platform increases, the importance of interoperability and conformance against tests is greater than ever. Good interoperability underpins the ongoing success of Freeview and Freeview Play.

The D-Book has successfully supported the introduction of HD, DVB-T2 as well as the clearance of the 700 MHz band – which was completed in August 2020.

Past editions of the D-Book introduced HbbTV references for Freeview Play and the MHEG to HbbTV transition. In addition, support for HEVC and HDR for IP delivered services was introduced.

The D-Book continues to support the development of products and services, including enhancements to coexistence testing; defining the profile of UHD; supporting compatible receivers for broadcast; and bringing the HbbTV requirements up to date with recent work by the HbbTV Association and DVB.

D-Book 12 removed requirements that were no longer needed for the evolution of DTT platforms, such as SD receiver profiles. This evolution continues in D-Book 12.5, mainly reflected in the “SI Rules of Operation” chapter and an update of the Errata of the HbbTV Specification. In addition, an overhaul of the structure has improved navigation throughout the document and an effort to unify language and layout.

The DTG welcomes contributions from members on the evolution towards hybrid distribution systems which will feed into the development of future D-Books. The DTG continues to ensure European and international harmonisation wherever possible while meeting the needs of the rapidly developing and highly successful UK TV market.

Yvonne Thomas
Strategic Technologist
November 2020

Yvonne Thomas graduated in Television Technologies and Electronic Media Engineering from University of Applied Science Wiesbaden (HSRM), Germany, in Oct. 2010. She received a prominent award of the ARD/ZDF Academy for her thesis in September 2011 at the IFA in Berlin.

Following these studies, she started at the beginning of 2011 to work at the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) in the Technology & Innovation Department as Project Manager. She was responsible for projects and strategic programs on 3D and Future Television technologies, such as UHDTV or LED studio lighting and highly involved in its standardisation.

In September 2015, Yvonne joined Arvato Systems’ Broadcast Solution division. As a Product Manager, she was responsible for the journalistic frontend “MediaPortal” of the Video Production Management Suite and included trends like AI and machine learning.

At NAB 2017, Yvonne was presented with the annual Technology Women to Watch Award from TVNews Check.

Since September 2019, Yvonne has been appointed the DTG´s Strategic Technologist overlooking the IPTV and UHDTV workstreams. She is active in various industry bodies (e.g. as former SMPTE Education Director and current Governor EMEA & Latin America) and works together with DTG members to explore the best viewing experience and strategies to move to an All-IP world.


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