Sinclair Launching ATSC 3.0 Datacasting Pilot Bringing Content to Vehicle Charging Stations

NextGen TV

Sinclair Broadcast Group said it is working with USSI Global to launch a datacasting business that will use ATSC 3.0 signals to deliver content and advertising to electric vehicle charging stations.

Sinclair and USSI called their pilot program the first commercial datacasting service using the NextGen TV broadcast standard. 

Station groups have pointed to estimates by BIA Advisory Services that businesses using the new ATSC 3.0 technology to generate as much as $15 billion in incremental revenues for stations.

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“Predictions of broadcasters supplementing their programming businesses with ancillary services have captured the imagination of all broadcasters,” Sinclair CEO Chris Ripley said. “It’s been a part of the ‘digital promise’ since we began the conversion from analog transmissions 25 years ago. Everyone has been waiting for the promises to be fulfilled. That has now arrived with our partnership with USSI Global, which opens wide the door to an enticing array of new services that enhance the choices for businesses and individuals alike.”

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The business Sinclair and USSI are putting together will test their ability to wirelessly send dedicated content to electric vehicle charging stations over the air in select markets. The broadcast signal will also be used to collect audience data. The test is designed to refine the system design and validate financial assumptions.

The companies will see if the system will scale. The U.S. Transportation Department aims to have 500,000 changing stations nationwide by 2030.

“USSI Global’s experience in the broadcast and digital signage industries uniquely positions us to power datacasting services for EV Charging stations, one of the fastest-growing business opportunities for DOOH,” USSI CEO Anthony Morelli said. “Our strong partnership with Sinclair in the broadcast market makes the pivot to datacasting a natural progression. USSI Global’s ecosystem allows us to build out a multitenant EV charging network.”  ■

Jon Lafayette

Jon has been business editor of Broadcasting+Cable since 2010. He focuses on revenue-generating activities, including advertising and distribution, as well as executive intrigue and merger and acquisition activity. Just about any story is fair game, if a dollar sign can make its way into the article. Before B+C, Jon covered the industry for TVWeek, Cable World, Electronic Media, Advertising Age and The New York Post. A native New Yorker, Jon is hiding in plain sight in the suburbs of Chicago.