Core Zenith Technologies
Building on nine decades of innovation leadership, today’s Zenith develops core technologies that enable content security, robust transmission and future broadcast standards.
Pro:Idiom® Digital Rights Management System
The Zenith-developed Pro:Idiom system is a robust, highly secure Digital Rights Management (DRM) system. It provides high-quality security to facilitate rapid, broad deployment of HDTV and other high value digital content to the hospitality and healthcare markets. Zenith, which is the creator and exclusive licensor of Pro:Idiom technology, has made licenses available to qualified companies around the world.
Unlike other DRM approaches, Pro:Idiom has been designed specifically for the hotel and healthcare industries, resulting in lower costs, and reduced maintenance. Its world-class encryption technology, large installed base of more than 3 million devices, integrated design and attractiveness to interactive system providers make Pro:Idiom the clear choice for delivering HDTV services to hotel guests and hospital patients with confidence.
Mobile Digital Television Technology
As co-developer of the core technology behind the ATSC A/153 Mobile Digital Television Standard, Zenith helped pave the way for the robust transmission of digital television broadcast signals to mobile and handheld devices. Beginning in 2007, together with LG Electronics and Harris Broadcast, Zenith engineers devised the MPH (Mobile-Pedestrian-Handheld) transmission system. This technology augmented the Zenith-developed, industry-standard VSB (Vestigial Side Band) digital TV transmission system and used key elements of the Zenith-developed E-VSB (Enhanced VSB) broadcast standard.
In 2009, following extensive industry-wide field tests and laboratory evaluations, the Advanced Television Systems Committee adopted the Zenith MPH technology as a core element of the A/153 Standard. As a passionate advocate for mobile TV, Zenith has worked with broadcasters throughout North America to assist in their implementation of mobile TV service. While still in its infancy, mobile TV promises to deliver live, local content to viewers on the go, offering significant benefits to consumers and broadcasters alike.
Mobile Emergency Alert System
Zenith is one of the key players behind the Mobile Emergency Alert System (M-EAS), a new broadcast standard that harnesses the power of terrestrial broadcasting to significantly enhance the nation’s emergency preparedness for the public and first responders. M-EAS is designed to leverage mobile digital TV broadcasting to deliver reliable, rich media alerts anywhere, anytime.
Adopted as a broadcast standard by the Advanced Television Systems Committee in spring 2013, M-EAS is ideal for next-generation alerting because it bypasses bandwidth bottlenecks that overload current cellular-based systems and has the ability to reach millions of devices – and people – simultaneously. Mobile EAS transmits rich-media alert messages with video, photos, graphics, maps and evacuation routes, radar images, text and audio (including text-to-speech.) Mobile EAS can also geographically target alerts to devices and citizens who need them.
M-EAS is moving rapidly from the laboratory to the marketplace, building on the successful conclusion of a nationwide field trial and development program spearheaded by Zenith, along with PBS, LG Electronics, Harris Broadcast and NAB Labs.
ATSC Digital Television Broadcast Standards
As the inventor of the digital VSB (Vestigial Side Band) transmission technology at the heart of the ATSC A/53 Digital Television Standard, Zenith has proudly helped lead the nation’s transition to all-digital broadcasting.
The Zenith technology was chosen by the Digital HDTV Grand Alliance as its transmission system, recommended in 1995 by the FCC Advisory Committee on Advanced Television Service, and adopted in 1996 by the Federal Communications Commission as the U.S. standard for digital TV broadcasting – enabling transmission of HDTV, multi-casting standard-definition television and data broadcasting.
Zenith holds essential patents for the U.S. broadcast standard ATSC A/53 and licenses its intellectual property on a reasonable and non-discriminatory basis. In fall 2007, Zenith formed a licensing pool with several other companies to collectively license their patents essential to the ATSC standard. MPEG LA, LLC (www.mpegla.com) is the administrator of the pool and has the authority to grant a single license under the essential patents of all the pool members, including Zenith
Looking to the future, Zenith technical experts, in conjunction with LG engineers are involved in the development of backwards-compatible enhancements to the A/53 DTV standard, collectively known as ATSC 2.0. Working closely with LG engineers, Zenith also is developing next-generation television technologies to be considered as part of the emerging ATSC 3.0 standard, expected to provide a flexible, extensible new platform for content delivery to mobile and fixed received in the years ahead. Zenith engineers also are playing an active role in the Future of Broadcast Television (FoBTV) global standards initiative.