ATSC 3.0 Fans Cheer FCC Action

Boosters talk of advancing public service via advanced standard

Those pushing the FCC to allow them to test the new ATSC 3.0 TV transmission standard were hailing the FCC's unanimous vote Thursday to begin that process.

The National Association of Broadcasters—along with the AWARN Alliance, America's Public Television Stations (APTS) and the Consumer Electronics Association—had petitioned the FCC last April to let broadcasters roll out ATSC 3.0.

"NAB commends the FCC and Chairman Pai for taking the first step towards approving the voluntary adoption of Next Gen TV. This innovative broadcast transmission standard offers free and local TV viewers the promise of higher-quality pictures and sound, mobile viewership, datacasting and lifesaving interactive emergency information," said NAB executive VP of communications Dennis Wharton. "With support from television manufacturers, public TV stations and the public safety community, NAB looks forward to Next Gen TV’s giant leap into broadcasting’s bright future."

“America’s Public Television Stations are delighted that the Federal Communications Commission under the leadership of Chairman Ajit Pai has adopted a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to implement the new ATSC 3.0 broadcast standard," said APTS president Patrick Butler. “We believe the new standard holds tremendous promise for enhancing the public service missions of public television – education, public safety and civic leadership – in addition to dramatically improving the viewing experience of our audience and providing critical mobile capability to first responders and the public as a whole.

“We commend Chairman Pai for making this proceeding a priority for the FCC, and we look forward to working with the Commissioners and staff to complete this process as quickly as possible and begin writing an exciting new chapter in the history of broadcasting.”

FCC chairman Ajit Pai says he is hoping to have a final framework in place by the end of the year. Fellow Republican Michael O'Rielly was looking to scare up support for an order by Halloween.

"We applaud the Commission for unanimously approving the notice of proposed rulemaking for voluntary adoption of ATSC 3.0. We also appreciate Chairman Pai and Commissioner Clyburn acknowledging advanced alerting as one of the key benefits of the new standard," said AWARN Alliance executive director John Lawson. "We are pleased that broadcasters and partners in the U.S. are now closer to making the Advanced Warning and Response Network (AWARN)  a reality – one that will undoubtedly save lives across the nation. Now, we have to begin addressing the many questions posed in the Notice."