MWC 2019: 5G-Xcast showcases video over 5G


Joint demonstration by IRT, EBU and Enensys-Expway involves live video transmissions to multiple commercial end user devices based on 5G-Xcast concepts

5G-Xcast, a European research project involving the EBU and several partners, is conducting a live demonstration of video broadcasts over 5G networks at this year’s Mobile World Congress.

The joint demonstration by IRT, EBU and Enensys-Expway involves live video transmissions to multiple commercial end user devices based on 5G-Xcast concepts. The demo will be conducted at the Enensys booth.

Antonio Arcidiacono, EBU director of technology and innovation, said: “5G presents some exciting opportunities for the future distribution of media services. Tests and trials such as this one are essential to verify the potential of this technology for the whole media sector.”

The 5G-Xcastproject aims to develop technology that enables large scale distribution of audio visual media services over 5G networks, with a maximum of scalability, bandwidth efficiency, and sustained video quality on every end user screen.

The demonstration will show how a combination of 5G broadcast and unicast features can be used to deliver free-to-air live TV and on-demand content to both stationary TV receivers and smartphones simultaneously. Seamless switching between broadcast and unicast modes is achieved by means of MooD (MBMS operation on Demand).

“The ever-growing use of mobile video requires more efficient distribution mechanisms in order to keep control of network load and CDN costs. The industry trials jointly realised throughout this project demonstrate the impressive potential of 5G broadcast for media distribution”, said Michael Hagemeyer, managing director at IRT.

IRT provides a smartphone app that allows users to watch live TV programmes delivered over a 5G broadcast transmission with additional content provided when unicast connections are available. Expway provides an all-in-one system called eBox enabling broadcast capabilities powered by the Expway BMSC and Expway BPM in the core network and the Expway Middleware on the smartphones. The original content from the European Championships 2018 is provided by the EBU.

“The growth in demand for OTT video is showing no signs of abating. Multiple studies show that within the next three years, video will account for nearly four-fifths of all mobile traffic,” said Claude Seyrat, VP telecom market at Enensys-Expway.

“This video growth has a direct impact on bandwidth saturation during the busy-hours, mainly during the evenings and special events. 5G specifications will improve the end-user video experience during average traffic times when enough bandwidth is available. Only 5G Broadcast can give the boost these strained networks need during peak traffic time.”

5G-Xcast is a 5G-PPP Phase II project focused on broadcast and multicast communication enablers for the fifth generation of wireless systems. It has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement Nr. 761498.


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