MPEG-H Audio enables personalized viewing experiences for football fans in Korea

SBS, the Korean broadcaster and media partner for the FIFA World Cup 2022 debuts a streaming service with MPEG-H based interactive audio during the upcoming football tournament to offer personalized viewing experiences  

SBS, the leading South Korean broadcaster, will offer the world’s first regular MPEG-H Audio streaming service with personalizable audio for all football fans in Korea. The service will allow users of the SBS mobile app to select between different audio presets such as “Basic”, “Enhanced Dialogue”, “Site” and “Dialogue Only”. It is the first time that users are offered such a level of personalization options in a live sports streaming service. The “Basic” preset is equivalent to the audio representation on normal TV sets, the “Enhanced Dialogue” preset provides a more vivid commentator, the “Site” preset conveys the pure stadium atmosphere without commentator at all. These personalization options are possible due to the unique features of the object-based audio of the MPEG-H Audio system. Although all of the features were demonstrated during numerous trials in the past, the SBS service is the first regular live streaming service worldwide.

MPEG-H Audio, substantially developed by Fraunhofer IIS, is the industry’s most advanced audio system for UHD-TV and streaming. It supports both immersive sound and the ability for users to adjust audio elements to their preferences. MPEG-H has been on air since 2017 on all TV networks in South Korea under the ATSC 3.0 standard. It was selected as the sole audio system for Brazil’s next-generation TV 3.0 broadcast service in December 2021 and has been on air in regular broadcast over ISDB-Tb since then. Fraunhofer offers MPEG-H software implementations for many popular CPU, SoC and DSP platforms. It is widely deployed today in TV sets, premium soundbars, and high-end smart speakers.

“We are committed to supporting our partner SBS to enable the most advanced user experiences. We are excited to see the successful integration of our MPEG-H Audio system into SBS’ state-of-the-art streaming service,” says Stefan Meltzer, Chief Business Development Manager at Fraunhofer IIS.

“The FIFA World Cup 2022 is the perfect opportunity for us to introduce new attractive services to our users and MPEG-H Audio offers all the features needed to support us with this,” says Sang-Jin Kim, CTO SBS. “SBS’s top-notch digital media technology, such as streaming and AI, will be expanded to various media services.”

Users of the SBS mobile app can watch the games of the international football tournament in Qatar, taking place from November 20, 2022 until December 18, 2022.

Header image (C) Adobe Stock: Sinsee Ho

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