BBC World is contemplating introducing for South Asian viewers of the news and current affairs channel a dual feed, which will offer programmes with voice-overs in Hindi. BBC will also go digital from the current analogue mode by November when it migrates to PAS-10 satellite from PAS-4.
The Indian unit of BBC is in the process of putting together a business plan which will examine the feasibility of having an additional feed of BBC World for South Asia in Hindi, specially where longish current affairs programmes are concerned.
BBC World is poised to launch a service in Spanish language and has a successful running service in Japanese.
In addition to the existing BBC World channel in English, currently tunable in over 10 million Indian cable and satellite homes, viewers can have the option of watching BBC programmes which may be dubbed or have voice-overs in Hindi. However, news bulletins may continue to be in English.
Another reason for toying with the idea of a dual BBC World feed in Hindi is also to give advertisers an option. The Hindi feed can become possible once BBC World migrates to PAS-10 and converts into a digital channel.
PanAm Sat Corporation, 81 per cent owned by Hughes Electronics which is part of General Motors, recently announced that its newest satellite PAS-10 was launched successfully and was on its way to the prime orbital slots more than 22,000 miles above the Indian Ocean region.
Channels which are expected to migrate from PAS-4 to PAS-10 satellite include some of Doordarshan’s channels, BBC World, ESPN, MTV, Nickelodeon, Sony, Discovery and CNN.
These customers will rely on the satellite to reach audiences throughout the expansive footprint covered by the satellite, which includes roughly 60 per cent of the planet’s land mass.