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29th Program

The 29th AES Conference, Audio for Mobile and Handheld Devices, will convene September 2 to 4, 2006 on the beautiful campus of Seoul National University, Seoul, Korea. It will be the first official AES conference to be held in Asia and the first AES conference dedicated solely to audio for mobile and handheld systems (the 18th Conference in 2001 was devoted to audio for information appliances); these systems are becoming a significant sector of the audio and music industries.

This three-day conference will bring together researchers and developers in the fields of both audio engineering and mobile telecommunications. Recently, the market for audio for personal and handheld applications has expanded significantly. The broad consumer use of MP3 players has had a profound impact on the industry, as MP3 players have now become the must-have personal music system for people of all ages and lifestyles.

The evolution of mobile phones from just simple voice communication tools to multifunction multimedia devices has made personal audio systems even more ubiquitous. The music industry is changing accordingly; sales of music downloads via the Internet or wireless phone networks have skyrocketed. John Oh, 29th Conference chair, and his committee believe that this timely conference will help people from different disciplines share current state-of-the-art technology and audio research in the fastest growing sector of the industry.


Sang-il Park and Kyungwhoon Cheun, papers cochairs, have organized the program into seven sessions.
The conference starts on Saturday morning with a session on coding, including an invited paper, “Multichannel Goes Mobile: MPEG Surround Binaural Decoding,” by a group of authors that includes Jeroen Breebart and Jurgen Herre. This presentation outlines a significant addition to the MPEG Surround specification that enables computationally-efficient decoding of MPEG Surround data into binaural stereo, which facilitates high-quality surround sound reproduction on mobile devices, such as cellular phones.

This session will also include the paper “Bandwidth Extension for Scalable Audio Coding” by Eunmi Oh et al. The next session will be comprised of three papers on speech processing. The final session on Saturday will be on a critical component in the manufacture of low-power-consumption handheld audio systems: class-D amplifiers. This session includes the invited paper “Full-Digital Amplification in Handheld Audio Systems” by John Oh.

The first session on Sunday morning will start with a session on implementation, which includes three papers on hardware and software issues related to mobile and handheld audio systems. After the coffee break, Nick Zacharov will present the invited paper “Audio Quality in Mobile Phones,” followed by a paper by Simon Wun and Andrew Horner on synthetic audio. On Sunday afternoon attendees will be treated to a tour of Gyeongbokgung Palace (see description below).

Implementation, Part 2 is the first session on Monday morning. Included in this session will be the paper “SLIMBus: An Audio Data and Control Interface for Mobile Devices,” by Juha Backman and colleagues. This paper introduces the collaborative efforts of the Mobile Industry Processor Interface (MIPI) alliance.

The second session in the morning focuses on 3-D audio issues, followed by a session in the afternoon on coding issues. Click here to view the conference calendar and complete program with abstracts.


Seoul is an ideal locale for a conference on audio on mobile and handheld audio systems. The city has a rich historical heritage, with many ancient sites of historical significance (as displayed in the accompanying photo of Changgyeonggung Palace). At the same time it is a very modern city on the leading edge of IT innovation; the percentage of it’s population with broadband Internet access is one of the highest worldwide.

DMB (Digital Media Broadcasting), the world’s first handheld digital TV network, and the WIBRO, the world’s first mobile broadband Internet service are already in operation. The first MP3 players were designed and built here. On the streets and trains of Seoul you will see many young people typing text messages on advanced, feature-rich mobile phones while listening to music on their MP3 players. Seoul is one of the best cities in the world for seeing and experiencing the most advanced implementations of mobile and handheld devices.

Conference attendees will also get a chance to experience one of Seoul’s cultural treasures, with a tour on Sunday afternoon to Gyeongbokgung Palace, which was the king’s residence in the Chosun dynasty (1392-1910). The palace is a spectacular example of the unique architecture of the Chosun dynasty; and the National Folk Museum and the National Museum are situated on the palace grounds.

After touring the palace, attendees will be treated to a banquet with impressive traditional Korean music and a performance by a dance company that has been designated a national treasure by the Korean Government.

Mark the dates, September 2 to 4, on your calendar and plan now to attend the AES 29th International Conference, Audio for Mobile and Handheld Devices, in Seoul, Korea.

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(C) 2006, Audio Engineering Society, Inc.