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The industry trade association and voice of 5G and LTE for the Americas, 5G Americas, has published new guidelines outlining the critical issues in online digital video delivery for licensed video content

The Mobile Video Ecosystem & Geofencing for Licensed Content Delivery report boils this down to two key areas: network and codec optimisation and geographical filtering for licensed distribution. 5G Americas says these strands of technology apply to the most predominant and fastest growing form of media transfer over the Internet today. The challenges related to video over the Internet will only become more complex and demanding with wider use of 3DTV, Ultra HD, augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR).

“Smartphones have become the predominant screen of choice of the ‘three screens’ for viewing various types of videos,” explained 5G Americas president Chris Pearson. “In addition to the opportunities this avails for many stakeholders, it also presents additional challenges for the progress of both mobile technology and video delivery standards, both imperative to support the continued growth of mobile video consumption and its quality of experience.”

The report highlights the perspectives of both the video content service provider and the mobile operator. It says that for video content service providers there are new delivery technologies being developed to improve the user experience while managing the required bandwidth to deliver a quality video experience. In addition, it notes that there is also a more rapid adoption of new video codecs, which 5G Americas says are at least 20-30% more efficient than legacy codecs. The trade association believes that mobile operators will also have more flexibility going forward with new standards that will allow policy decisions to be enforced in near-real time.

As regards geofencing, the report explores aspects such as the risk of location spoofing and the need for a trusted source to verify each device’s location. The paper notes the current lack of standards for communicating trusted network-based device location for a roaming device and concludes with recommendations towards a solution. The discussion emphasises the need for close collaboration between all stakeholders, especially the mobile operators, content owners, content distributors and third-party aggregators.

The report concludes with the hopes that the recommendations would be used to drive activity in standards development organisations such as Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) or Open Mobile Alliance (OMA) for developing standards-based solutions with global industry support. Yet 5G Americas cautions that only with broad global adoption of a standardised solution, vastly simplifying future implementations and upgrades that would surely be necessary, can a realistic solution to the problem be achieved.