SK Telecom forms a U.S. broadcasting venture

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SK Telecom forms a U.S. broadcasting venture

SK Telecom established a joint venture with the Sinclair Broadcast Group to target the U.S. market.

The mobile operator on Sunday said Cast.era, the new joint venture, will broadcast over the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) 3.0 digital television system in the United States in the first half of the year.

ATSC 3.0 is a version of ATSC standards for television broadcasting. Used in Korea since 2017, it is said to be able to deliver high-quality video at a faster speed. ATSC 2.0 is commonly used in the United States.

Kevin Gage from Hunt Valley, Maryland-based Sinclair has been named chief operating officer of the venture. SK Telecom’s Park Kyung-mo has been appointed chief technology officer.

Sinclair Broadcast Group is a telecommunications conglomerate that acquired the Fox regional sports networks. Fox Sports Networks has the relay rights for 42 teams, including those in the MLB, NBA and NHL.

SK Telecom plans to merge its telecommunications technologies with Sinclair’s broadcasting infrastructure to offer broadcasting cloud infrastructure, over-the-top services and personalized ads that could be featured on internet protocol television.

SK Telecom will build ATSC 3.0 broadcasting cloud infrastructure by utilizing its cloud infrastructure management technologies and virtual network technologies on Sinclair’s broadcasting system.

Once the infrastructure is in place, broadcasting stations in the United States can be centrally operated, instead of each regional broadcasting station operating independently.

BY JIN MIN-JI [jin.minji@joongang.co.kr]

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