Competition isn't always a good thing. From VHS vs. Betamax all the way to SACD vs. DVD-Audio and most recently Blu-ray vs. HD DVD, competing formats have always been controversial. In the case of SACD and DVD-Audio, it could be said that the war killed off both sides. In an interesting display of peaceful coexistence, Korean corporations LG Electronics and Samsung are setting aside differences to work together to present a standard for mobile digital television systems. The two companies will join forces to present their jointly-developed technology to the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), which is looking to set the standard for North America's mobile DTV format. There's interesting speculation on why the two are suddenly working together.
According to an article in Broadcasting Cable, a meeting is about to take place that will compare the main three contenders in the North American mobile-DTV market. One is from LG, one from Samsung, and a third from Thomson and Micronas Semiconductor. LG's MPH service uses a slightly lower data rate than the A-VSB service from Samsung. It's been suggested that the ATSC was leaning towards one, but with a joint collaboration, both companies stand to win as they work together moving forward. A single standard isn't just good for the companies, it's good for the entire US mobile-DTV industry - consumers included. -Leslie Shapiro