challenges and opportunities

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  • 1. Digital Convergence: The Challenges and Opportunities for BTs Future in Networked Multimedia Services Li-Qun Xu BT Research and Venturing, Group Chief Technology Office

2. Talk outline

  • Introduction to BTs research & venturing
  • BTs digital media services provision ( examples )
  • BT Vision BTs broadband powered TV
  • Research issues in future content and media
  • Discussion

3. Strategic ResearchBroadband Mobility ICT Network Transformation Customer Experience & Systems Broadband Applications CTOResearch CentresVenturesBusiness Support Partner & Supplier Relationship Broadband Applications IT (Infrastructure & Applications) Networks Pervasive ICT Foresight Security Intelligent Systems Asian Mobility Centre External Venturing IPR LicensingCentre for the Customer Strategic Research IT (Infrastructure & Applications) Networks Pervasive ICT Broadband Applications Foresight Security Mobility Applied Technology Centre Innovation Central Generation of Innovation Dividend1. BT Research & Venturing organisation Internal R & D only Open innovation 4. Open Innovation also means working closely with academic partners

  • Research relationships with 23 UK academic institutions
  • Research relationships with 13 Global academic institutions

ResearchRelationships with GlobalAcademic Institutions

  • Research programmes with DTi, MoD and EU 6 thFramework
    • - DTI project on Traffimatics
    • - EU project on spectrum-agile cognitive wireless access radio protocols
    • - MoD project on information fusion
  • BT CMI Collaboration:MIT, Cambridge, UCL and Oxford Universityworking together in three research centres:
    • -The Centre for Competitiveness and Innovation
    • -The Communications Research Network group
    • -The RFID and Supply Chain group

Formal Innovation Collaboration

  • Global PhD students funded to support breakthroughtechnologies and innovations
  • Global Masters and undergraduate students funded to supportbreakthrough technologies and innovations

Focused Project Specific Funding

  • MIT: Customer Advocacy - how to radically improverelationships with customers
  • UC Berkeley and Stanford: Communications Architecture futurerequirements for a global networking architecture
  • Cambridge University: Transportation Information MonitoringEnvironment how to support large-scale customers withcomplex information requirements in the future

Example Areas of Research 5.

  • BT PodShow This is BTs entry into thesocial networkingspace, the service is accessible to all UK Internet users and enables creative individuals, media production companies and record labels to share music and video content, giving aspiring rock stars and movie makers a worldwide audience.
  • BT Digital Vault-the free service which allows people to store music, video, photos and virtually any other filessecurely online .
  • BT Fusion - the fully convergedfixed-mobile servicefor residential users as well as corporate institutions.
  • BT Movio TV on the move , is the first wholesale offer in the world to combine live TV, DAB digital radio, a 7-day programme guide and red button interactivity for mobile phones. TV content partners for the service include BBC1, ITV1, E4, Channel 4 Shortcuts and ITN.
  • BT Vision A unique triple-play entertainment offer in addition to Freeview channels.

2. BTs digital media services provision(examples) To ensure the QoS delivery as well as have a constant stream of innovative services forbusiness ,professionalandpersonallife, providing digital experience that are intuitive, engaging, and relevant. 6. 3. BT Vision broadband powered TV BT Visionis delivered through a new set-top box - theV-box . This contains a PVR able to store up to 80 hours of content, pause or rewind live TV and record programmes at the touch of a button. BT Vision combinesdigital terrestrial TVwithbroadband-poweredentertainment on demand including film, music, childrens programming and interactive services. BT Visionalso features a "replay TV" service, allowing customers tocatch upwith some of the broadcast TV programmes they may have missed during the previous week. They will also have access to the242 near liveon-demand FA Premiership games secured by BT earlier last year. That meansthree-quartersof all FA Premiership games will be available in full to BT Vision Sport customers. BT Visionwill also launch a sports service this summer. Following a deal with Setanta (Irish pay-TV firm), BT Vision Sport customers will have access to the Setanta Sport channel and its46 liveFA Premiership games,60 livegames from the Scottish Premier League and other sports. Soft launch on 4 thDecember 2006 7. BT Vision a home hub and applications platform? BT Vision promises to shake up the broadcasting industry by offering a mixture of top-flight football, movies, music, classic TV shows and other on-demand services without a monthly subscription, wroteThe Guardian .

  • BT Visionwill shortly also use broadband to deliver morespecial interest programming . And there will be newinteractive servicesbased around audience participation, voting, gaming, gambling andcommunications- enabling customers to chat with each other or use video telephony to talk face-to-face whilst watching programmes.
  • BT Visionwill also provide a platform foruser-generated contentso that customers can share their videos, photographs and music with a wider audience.
  • BT and its partner Vodafone UK are working together to enhance the recently announcedVodafone at Homeservice by offering these customers a version of BT Vision.

8. 4.Research issues in future content and media Driving BTs innovative media services in business and consumer markets 9. Broadband TV research challenges

  • Interactivity and Personalisation
    • Broadband has the potential to delivernew forms of interactive and personalisedTV programmes, but how will these be created, how will consumers interact, what kinds of personalisation do they want, and will such formats be compelling?
  • Personal content
    • Through digital video, consumers have been empowered as producers; through broadband they will be able to create theirown TV channel . But what tools will they and their subscribers - need in order to make sense of the massive amount of personal content that is being created?
  • Search and retrieval
    • How can we help consumers deal with the problem oftoo much choice ? Can we identify means by which it becomes straightforward to rapidlydiscoverprogrammes that interest me from a global pool of available content?
  • Broadcast + Broadband?
    • How can we enable advertisers and creative professionals to leverage the rich interactivity available from aset-top box platformwhich seamlessly combines both digital broadcast and broadband content delivery?

10. Some research issues

  • Implicit semantics extraction and affective content modelling
    • Certain semantic concepts are implicit as well as difficult and time-consuming to annotate. Advanced tools are in need to automatically acquire these elements (e.g., prevailing mood of a clip, emotion-based segmentation, highlights, abstraction, violent, romantic, etc).
    • The understanding of video content and affective states in this way will facilitate automatic matching/insertion/flagging of suitable commercials with the video context as well as meeting the users affective request of video content.
  • Network-aware multimedia processing and delivery
    • In the era of network and multimedia convergence, a QoS guaranteed video delivery service will need to consider two aspects concurrently concerning both what to deliver (content characteristics) and how to deliver (network architecture, work flow, routing, etc).
    • Network-aware methods make use of the network characteristics in their design, to intelligently take advantage of infrastructure and content characteristics. Network-aware delivery aspects include solutions with emphasis on a stronger integration among higher layers of protocol stacks including application layer.


  • User preference and interactive behaviours modelling
  • How to build a comprehensive profile of a user through analysis of his/her request/access of/to particular videos with both
    • Explicitly available ofcreation metadata(e.g., genre, director, leading actors, story description, comments, rating, etc, that could come as part of the video document or searchable from other on-line web sources) and
    • Automatically extractedimplicit semantic annotations(e.g., highlights, video summary/skimming, story segmentation, prevailing mood, fast or slow tempo, etc)
  • as well as the on-line (dynamic) behaviours such as
    • the way the userwatches/interactswith the video content, i.e. if he or she watches the video (the narrative story) in a linear fashion or


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