The European Commission will decide within the next 12 months on unifying the European Union’s divergent rules for television broadcasts to mobile phones, Information Society Commissioner Viviane Reding said Wednesday. In a speech, Reding said different national rules on on-demand contact and the lack of a consistent intellectual property regime are holding back mobile television.
A new law was being prepared, which would allow broadcasters to operate under their own national law and sell such mobile broadcasts through the 25-nation union, Reding said.
A new law will be required to resolve the question of divergent intellectual property rights.
Still to be decided are the exact standard to be used and how to divide up radio spectrum.
“The choice of a widely accepted standard – such as GSM for mobile telephony – is of paramount importance to get economies of scale,” Reding said. “I see this issue as a matter of urgency: decisions must be taken in the coming 12 months.”
The urgency is because the E.U. risks falling behind the U.S.
“While the U.S. content industry is already working on this – for example by adapting the most acclaimed TV series to consumption on a mobile phone – we seem to be lagging behind here in Europe,” Reding said.
“I am convinced we need an approach to interoperability for mobile TV that supports this important new market, rather than constraining it. Industry should take the necessary steps to make interoperability possible. I hope they will.”