Top Story

e4m_logo.png

Home >> Media - TV >> Article

TRAI sets timeframe of 5 years to migrate to digital format

28-July-2008
Font Size   16
Share
TRAI sets timeframe of 5 years to migrate to digital format

TRAI has sent its final recommendations on revamping cable TV services to the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. If acted upon by the Government, it will not only revamp the cable TV industry but also put India on the map of developed countries with predominant share of digital transmission of entertainment content.

Once implemented, the recommendations would enable broadband Internet services to be accessible to all subscribers in the country – estimated at 76 million currently – leading up to the introduction of ‘triple-play services’ with a single operator provides television, Internet and telecom services to subscribers. India currently has 4.5 million broadband subscribers.

TRAI Chairman Nripendra Misra pointed out, “Unlike in the developed markets, only a very small portion of the 78 million TV homes in India have two-way digital cable. The rest of the industry is largely analogue. Analogue cable carries 40-80 channels, while digital cable has the capacity to deliver 300 channels. The Authority’s concern was that there is neither any technological upgradation nor any capital inflow into the industry.”

Looking for innovation and investments from within the country and overseas, the recommendations are in line with the consultation paper it had floated on restructuring of cable TV services as on March 4, 2008.

TRAI has recommended a well-defined and supportive framework to restructure the cable industry, which at present suffers from limited technological capabilities, with practically no scope for upgradation of the current analogue system to carry transmission signals. It has given cable service providers five years to migrate to the digital format and provide signal strengths as prescribed by the Bureau of Indian Standards. This recommendation to ensure digitalisation of the cable TV industry will go a long way in revamping transmission quality that users have been complaining about.

The regulator has recommended a separate licensing framework for cable TV operators (LCOs) and multi-system operators (MSOs), with separate entry fees for those providing services locally, at the state and national levels ranging between Rs 10,000 and Rs 1 lakh, respectively. It has also granted recognition to MSOs and mandated that they should be made to migrate from the analogue to the digital format in five years. Till now there was no distinction between a local cable operator and an MSO.

TRAI has also recommended that all cable operators must have a complaint redressal system in place and also provide detailed bills to their customers, which should include subscription charges, service tax and entertainment tax. Besides, it added that all cable operators would be mandated to send their records to the I&B ministry and TRAI at such intervals as specified by the Government.

Tags

Siddharth Kumar Tewary, Founder, Chief Creative, One Life Studios and Swastik Productions, on owning the IP on his most ambitious project 'Porus,' the risk of recovering its cost and his distribution strategy

Webscale plans to build the brand around smooth operations for the e-commerce sector and then move on to demand generation

Shriya Ghate, Business Head, Tinkle, spills the beans on the company's vision for its special line of merchandise launched to celebrate its 37th anniversary, its pricing, marketing strategies, and more

Vivek Patni, Director of Wonder Cement, on the current marketing strategies and challenges that brand owners face

Luis Fonsi, Rita Ora, Jain of Makeba fame , Dimitri Vegas, Jason Derulo, Charly Black and Dasu, J Balvin, Parineeti Chopra, Tiger & Jackie Shroff speak exclusively to the radio channel

The Film-Maker, as the host of ‘Calling Karan’, Will Be Just A Phone Call Away From Listeners Seeking Advice On Love & Relationship

The group aims to double its FMCG turnover to Rs. 1,000 crore over four years.