It’s official: SMPTE ST 2110 has arrived!

SMPTE 2110

After plenty of discussion and much anticipation, it is great news to hear about the publication of the first standards within SMPTE ST 2110, Professional Media Over Managed IP Networks – a standard which Nevion has been actively involved in defining.

In some ways, it feels as though we’ve been waiting for this moment to arrive forever, but in fact, the standards work on ST 2110 has been remarkably fast – less than 18 months. We heard at IBC 2017 that the standards had officially been approved, but we still had to wait for them to be published. Now, however, the day has arrived, and it signifies a significant step forward for the adoption of IP within the broadcast industry.

To recap, the ST 2110 standards suite specifies the carriage, synchronization and description of separate elementary essence streams over professional IP networks in real time for live production, play-out and other professional media applications. Now that the standards have been published, the industry has the means to ensure compatibility and interoperability between products in IP production, which of course means vendor-choice for broadcasters and service providers.

As a pioneer of IP technology in live broadcasting, and a strong supporter of standards, Nevion is obviously delighted to see the industry agreeing to ST 2110. It all looked so very different just two years ago, when Nevion, together with four other leading suppliers, founded the Alliance for IP Media Solutions (AIMS). At the time, there were several competing and somewhat proprietary approaches to essence-based transport over IP, being promoted by some vendors. AIMS ensured that the industry moved to open standards instead.

A lot of the specific benefits around SMPTE ST 2110 come down to the technical details. An article on the Broadband TV News website explains this particularly well:

SMPTE 2110 standards make it possible to separately route and break away the essence streams — audio, video and ancillary data. This advance simplifies, for example, the addition of captions, subtitles and teletext, as well as tasks such as the processing of multiple audio languages and types. Each essence flow may be routed separately and brought together again at the endpoint. Each of the component flows — audio, video and ancillary data (there may be multiple streams of each type) — is synchronized, so the essence streams are co-timed to one another while remaining independent.

With ST 2110 now finally in the public domain, you can be sure that it will be the talking point at all the major conventions next year. We also expect equipment vendors to add full support of the standard over the course of the year. Nevion already has full or partial ST 2110 support on all its relevant products, and has used parts of the standard in some deployments, e.g. TV 2 Norway.

We’ll no doubt be talking about SMPTE ST 2110 a lot more in the coming weeks and months, so be sure to keep an eye on our blog for more!