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Kick-starting enhanced DTV

The new standard for broadcasters' interactive and other enhanced-TV digital content will get its first major
tryout in late spring when South Korean networks and manufacturers launch a
trial in World Cup soccer coverage.

Although the service is being unveiled overseas, the U.S. industry will be
watching closely because the same set of interactive standards are expected to
be included in this country's digital standard, which is overseen by the
Advanced Television Systems Committee.

The ATSC developed the DTV Application Software Environment (DASE) to standardize
software used in digital-TV receivers and allow transmissions of ancillary data to be
displayed in a consistent way.

DASE has been in the works for years, and it was designated an ATSC "candidate
standard" in January.

The ATSC encourages industry players to implement candidate standards on a trial
basis in order to obtain technical feedback.

Information gleaned from the trials will be used to develop enhancements that
will be incorporated into a formally proposed standard.

ATSC officials said a universal standard for all digital-TV receivers and set-tops is
vital to consumer acceptance.