The first step to deploying fancy, shmancy Europe-wide mobile TV solution is a successful trial, of course, and Alcatel Lucent and SFR are happy to oblige on that end. The infrastructure firm tied up with the French carrier last year to demonstrate that DVB-SH was a viable solution -- despite the fact that SFR is really big on using 3G data for mobile TV, go figure -- by setting up a trial network in southwestern France. How do you fake a satellite-assisted network, you ask? Good question -- turns out it involves letting a helicopter chill way up there with a transmitter and pair it with a handful of repeaters strapped onto some of SFR's existing 3G towers. Basically, the companies found that DVB-SH worked like a champ with repeaters added to "only portions" of SFR's towers, making the setup a cost-effective alternative to DVB-H for wide-scale rollouts. It's still unclear whether SFR's actually interested in getting involved with a production network or whether it's sticking to its data-only guns, but regardless, other carriers are sure to benefit from the findings.

[Via mocoNews]

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Alcatel Lucent, SFR tout successful DVB-SH trial