ATSC Unveils Candidate Standard for Interactive TV

The Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) has announced that its A/105 "Interactive Services" system has been elevated to the level of a Candidate Standard.

A/105 is a key component of the emerging ATSC 2.0 standard that will help broadcasters meld with Internet-delivered and broadcast content and the announcement that it has become a Candidate Standard is a key step in the technology coming to market.

From here, A/105 is expected to become a “Proposed Standard” and then the group could make it full-fledged ATSC standard. "Viewers are consuming television content on a variety of devices -- whenever, wherever and however they want it," said ATSC President Mark Richer in a statement. "Consumer demand for video has resulted in an increasing number of paths to deliver content to viewers. The ATSC 2.0 Interactive Services system allows the broadcaster to connect broadcast programming with additional services related to that programming."

When the standards process for A/105 is completed, it would allow broadcasters and vendors to develop products that would provide interactive TV offerings using the Internet, second screen applications, personalization, service usage reporting, receiver access to web-based servers, and support for automatic content recognition. Those services would, however, need ATSC 2.0 enabled TV sets, which may not hit the market before 2015.