France Plans DVB-H Network By Mid-2008

France is pushing to launch a mobile TV service before the Beijing Olympics, with the countrys minister of economy and finances and the minister of culture expecting a DVB-H service to be launched by summer 2008, reports Rapid TVNews. The technology isn’t a surprise (although French companies are the strongest backers of the satellite DVB-SH project) but priorities of the government are. In October a call for bids will be issued for the broadcasters which will use the platforms — the French government is pegging 15-17 channels for the service, and can set aside some for public channels independently of the bidding. However, the actual network isn’t sorted out yet: “There are questions still to be resolved, such as the opening of mobile TV to telecom operators or the business model between free or pay-TV channels.” The article says the new mobile TV market will create about 10,000 new jobs in France, although this is unattributed.