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SK Telecom-Sinclair joint venture to commercialize next-generation broadcast solution this year

Entertainment 16:45 April 02, 2021

SEOUL, April 2 (Yonhap) -- Cast.era, a media technology joint venture between South Korea's top wireless carrier SK Telecom Co. and U.S. media giant Sinclair Broadcast Group Inc., will launch a next-generation broadcast solution that boosts television content quality this year, the South Korean company said Friday.

The telecom operator said Cast.era has completed testing of the 5G-ATSC3.0 platform, which boosts broadcast quality using SK Telecom's 5G cloud and artificial intelligence (AI) technology.

Cast.era is planning to commercialize the solution for the Sinclair Broadcast Group this year and is considering using SK Telecom's SAPEON chip, an AI semiconductor for data centers, for the service. It also aims to provide the solution to South Korean broadcasters.

SK Telecom Co.'s next-generation broadcast service is being demonstrated at Hotel Nanta in the southern resort island of Jeju in this photo provided by the company on April 2, 2021. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

The solution uses an AI upscaler, which can convert an HD resolution broadcast into Full HD, as well as turning a 30 frames per second (fps) footage into 240 fps, according to SK Telecom.

The broadcast solution incorporates ultra-low latency technology that leads to zero latency when watching live broadcasts on smartphones. SK Telecom said there is currently a transmission delay of around nine seconds for broadcast content on smartphones, compared with those on TV.

Cast.era's service also makes use of cloud technology that allows a main broadcast studio to remotely control and operate broadcast transmission systems in regional studios, compared with existing systems that separately require equipment and personnel in all studios nationwide.

SK Telecom and Sinclair Broadcast Group launched the joint venture in January last year.

yunhwanchae@yna.co.kr
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