HbbTV upgrades Operator Application specification
An updated version of the HbbTV Operator Application specification has been released by the global initiative for providing open standards to delyver advanced interactive TV services through broadcast and broadband networks for connected TV sets and set-top boxes, HbbTV Association, as the company has recently announced.
When there is agreement between a platform operator and smart TV manufacturer, the HbbTV OpApp acts like a virtual set-top box inside the smart TV set, enabling operators to provide a uniform user interface across different manufacturers. This new version improves support for operator applications to render IP-delivered linear channels, including enabling regular HbbTV interactive (“red button”) applications to appear alongside IP-delivered linear channels and operator-managed user interface elements. It allows for a consistent and seamless viewer experience across broadcast and IP-delivered linear channels.
The updated specification also allows an operator application to manage the streaming and presentation of a collection of IP-delivered linear channels discovered from a DVB-I service list or equivalent. A key driver behind many of these new features are the requirements of UK broadcasters and manufacturers of TV receivers who together will be launching the new Freely hybrid TV platform in the UK in 2024. Freely is likely to be the first application using the new version.