Hi,

I'd like to ask the Webkit developers their opinion on providing some support 
for HbbTV [1] within Webkit. Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV or "HbbTV", is a 
major new pan-European initiative aimed at harmonising the broadcast and 
broadband delivery of entertainment to the end consumer through connected TVs 
and set-top boxes.  The HbbTV standard is proving to be very popular, TVs and 
STBs supporting HbbTV are shipping in huge numbers throughout Europe.  HbbTV is 
built on top of OIPF [2], which in turn is based on portions of CE-HTML [3].

Our lab, Samsung Electronics Research Institute (SERI), has been heavily 
involved in HbbTV and our current solution is based on Webkit. We would like to 
provide our changes back to the community.

I know that support requests for CE-HTML have been briefly touched upon in the 
past. As I understand it, the main objection to providing support within WebKit 
is that the CE-HTML specification is not freely available, and thus restricts 
the number of developers who can fully understand it and therefore provide 
fixes / support.

In reality, much of the CE-HTML specification simply profiles which parts of 
the W3C standard behaviour are mandatory, optional and/or recommended. OIPF 
then profiles CE-HTML (dropping some requirements, extending others to match 
W3C/HTML5), HbbTV profiles out even more of CE-HTML.

Other parts of OIPF and CE-HTML do not need to be implemented within Webkit 
itself. Some can be implemented as object plugins (e.g. AV Control and local 
video), while others, such as the JavaScript classes required, can be inserted 
into the JavaScriptCore at runtime.

What I propose is to provide the basic support required within Webkit in order 
to at least load the XHTML portions of HbbTV applications and provide the 
correct key handling to drive them. In order to provide 'full' HbbTV support, 
implementations would need to provide the plugins and additional JavaScript 
classes to complete the picture.

For instance, by simply adding support for the document mime type handling of 
application/vnd.hbbtv.xhtml+xml and application/ce-html+xml, many HbbTV 
applications will load and display the main page, and several will also 
correctly navigate around the application correctly.

Regards,

Mark.

[1] Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV - http://www.hbbtv.org/
[2] Open IPTV Forum - http://www.oipf.tv/
[3] CEA, CEA-2014-A, Web-based Protocol Framework for Remote User Interface on 
UPnP Networks and the Internet (Web4CE)


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