1). Electronic Service Guide (ESG) - Overview
§ An electronic program guide (EPG) or interactive program guide (IPG) or electronic service guide (ESG) is a digital guide to scheduled broadcast television or radio programs, typically displayed on-screen with functions allowing a viewer to navigate, select, and discover content by time, title, channel, genre, etc. by use of their remote control, a keyboard, or other input devices such as a phone keypad.
§ Electronic Service Guide (ESG) is very similar to the EPG service provided by many digital-TVs.
§ Migration from EPG to ESG: The term Electronic Service Guide (ESG) is attributed to the
2). Electronic Service Guide (ESG) – Service Discovery
§ Electronic service guide (ESG) is a service discovery tool for both user and client applications on the mobile terminal.
§ The ESG enables the user of a mobile TV–capable device to automatically discover all the service platforms and services available in the usage area.
§ This allows the user to select the services in which she or he is interested thanks to an ESG browsing application on her or his terminal.
§ The on-screen information may be delivered by a dedicated channel or assembled by the receiving equipment from information sent by each program channel.
3). ESG with PDC, DVR, PVR, PPV, VOD, etc.
§ By navigating through an EPG on a receiving device, users can see more information about the current program and future programs.
§ When EPGs are connected to personal video recorder (PVR), they enable a viewer to plan his or her viewing and record broadcast programs to a hard disk for later viewing.
§ Typical elements of an EPG comprise a graphical user interface (GUI) which enable the display of program titles, descriptive information such as a synopsis, actors, directors, year of production, and so on, the channel name and the programs on offer from sub-channels such as Pay-Per-View (PPV) and Video-On-Demand (VOD) services, program start times, genres and other descriptive metadata.
§ It is possible that network operator, service operator, terminal manufacturers and content aggregators could all have their own ESG.
4). Data / Information in ESG / EPG
The information provided by ESG is categorized in two types:
- user attraction information and
- content acquisition information.
§ In developing EPG software, manufacturers must include functions to address the growing volumes of increasingly complex data associated with programming.
§ This complex data includes program descriptions, schedules, ratings, user configuration information such as favourite channel lists, and multimedia content.
§ Available services are displayed to the user with short descriptions.
§ The user can also acquire more detailed information about the services of interest.
§ The terminal device also needs information for launching the service.
§ Hence, the necessary details for service acquisition, and the technical description of the service content for displaying it properly are provided in the ESG.
§ To meet this need, some set-top box software designs incorporate a
§ For broadcasting on-line services in DVB networks, there exists also the TV-Anytime concept, which introduced an XML-based data model for describing the content of services and other useful metadata.
§ The ESG data model is partly based on the TV-Anytime model.
5). Subscriber browsing the ESG/EPG with the 3 different following views:
§ The bouquet view (what’s on air now): a table of channels included in the bouquet with, for each channel, the current program title. Depending on the terminal capabilities and screen size, the table can also present a picture associated to the program and the schedule.
§ The channel view: a table of programs with the start time scheduling.
§ The program view: a specific layout including the channel logo, the program title, the program picture and a description.
§ The latest revolution in EPGs is a personalized EPG which uses semantics to be able to advise one or multiple viewers what to watch based on their interests. An EPG can be completely personal.
6). Two major ESG standards: DVB IPDC (IP Datacast) and OMA BCAST.
6.1). DVB IPDC ESG is defined by one of the DVB specifications for IP datacasting published as formal ETSI standards called “IP Datacast over DVB-H: Electronic Service Guide”.
§ DVB IPDC is also known as DVB CBMS.
§ This is the purpose of the electronic service guide (ESG) defined in ETSI TS 102 471, and TS 102 592 for ESG Implementation Guidelines
§ The document elucidates the data model, the representation format, the encapsulation and the transport of the ESG of DVB-H.
§ Basic ESG operations in DVB IPDC standard are comprised of three parts: ESG bootstrap, ESG acquisition and ESG update.
The available IPDC services in different ESG layers are
§ Described by the ESG Instance based on the data model using XML Schema.
§ Partitioning the ESG Instance into ESG XML Fragments.
§ Encapsulated ESG XML fragments (ESG metadata) into ESG containers
§ Transported by FLUTE to enable the optimal delivery of containers as files.
6.2). OMA BCAST is an open global specification for mobile TV and can be adapted to any IP-based mobile content delivery technology.
§ ESG is called as Service Guide in OMA BCAST.
§ The standard is initiated by a standards body called Open Mobile Alliance (OMA), who is focusing on developing open standards for the mobile phone industry.
§ A variety of features were specified in OMA BCAST 1.0 including ESG, file and delivery, service and content protection using the smart card or DRM profiles, terminal and service provisioning, interactivity and notifications.
§ Meanwhile, OMA BCAST is designed to support broadcast technologies such as DVB-H, 3GPP MBMS, 3GPP2 BCMCS and mobile unicast streaming systems as well.