IMPALA - the International MHEG Promotion Alliance

MHEG-5 is a licence-free, market-proven public standard interactive TV middleware that allows the delivery of services over and above linear video. The connected TV (hybrid IP and broadcast) variant is called the MHEG Interaction Channel. MHEG is highly efficient from a receiver perspective and allows a wide range of TV-centric iTV services to be deployed; services that are proven to enhance viewer loyalty and “stickiness”. A highly structured conformance regime and country profile system allows vibrant receiver retail models to be established. The connected TV MHEG Interaction Channel augments broadcast services by providing IP-based connectivity in the same receiver allowing broadcasters to create additional revenue streams.

As well as being conditional access-agnostic, MHEG-5 is also platform-agnostic and has successfully been deployed on terrestrial satellite in the UK, New Zealand, Hong Kong,  Australia and Ireland. It is being trialled in many other countries.

MHEG forms a key part of the CI Plus security standard, providng the GUI that allows viewers to select VOD services using the technology.

MHEG-5 also has an active technology roadmap and is constantly being developed.

Freeview New Zealand took its lead from the successful Freeview UK platform in its business structure, brand positioning, and a number of technology decisions. It made sense for us to go with a cost-effect and proven open standard middleware platform – MHEG-5 - for interactive broadcast applications.

Steve Browning,
General Manager of Freeview in New Zealand