Most players want DTH rules by TRAI, no agreement on carriage fee

NEW DELHI: Most of the stakeholders irrespective of the category they belong to are in favour of some regulation by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) with regard to direct-to-home (DTH) Television, but are divided on whether Quality of Service should be stipulated by the regulator or drawn up by the licensee.

According to the comments to a consultation paper relating to DTH issued by TRAI on 2 March, it is clear that the stakeholders are also divided on whether the regulator should stipulate a must carry clause, though many have said this should be decided by the licensee keeping the needs of his subscribers in mind.

A total of 27 stakeholders responded. They included DTH licencees Tata Sky, Dish TV and Sun Direct, broadcasters Star TV, ZEE Telefilms, Zoom TV and Times Now, SET Discovery, Neo Sports, and Sangeet Bangla Network, content providers Reliance Blumagic, NDS Asia Pacific, Bharti Airtel, the multi-system operator IndusInd Media, cable organizations Cable Operators Federation of India and Association of Cable Network Operators, consumer organization Voluntary Organisation in the Interest of the Consumer (VOICE) and Society for Consumer Consciousness, media advocacy group CASBAA (Cable and Satellite Broadcasters Association of Asia), and several individuals.


A majority of those who responded said they preferred regulation by TRAI rather than a Reference Interconnect Offer system for interconnection agreements. Some suggested that a Standard Interconnection Agreement could be mandated for this purpose. The licencees felt that there should be regulation till the industry attains a maturity level, though one of them felt that an agreement can be mandated only if the parties are unable to come to an agreement.

Sun Direct suggested a Standard Subscription Agreement to be formulated by TRAI. Star and Neo Sports were of the view that agreements already exist between the platforms and broadcasters, and therefore there should no further regulation.

CASBAA was strongly opposed to any kind of regulation or interference by any government functionary or regulator and felt that the free field of competition would help to decide any disputes. It felt that there was already more than necessary regulation in all matters related to broadcasting. TRAI should in fact be working to reduce regulation, it said.

Most respondents felt that there was no need for any amendment in the licence regulations relating to the must-carry clause to do away with the clause requiring provision of access to various content providers/channels on a non-discriminatory basis, though some felt this should be left to the consumers.

SET said as long as there was a `must provide’ obligation on the content providers/channels on a non-discriminatory basis, there should be a parallel obligation on the DTH platforms to provide access to all content providers/channels on a nondiscriminatory basis Bharti Airtel feels this provision has become obsolete.

The Association of Cable TV Network Operators felt that all the free-to-air channels of DD Direct and at least thirty FTA channels should be made available to all platforms.


The concept of carriage fee should be done away with till all broadcasters are given a fair chance.

Though divided on the issue of Quality of Service, most respondents say that certain guidelines already exist and therefore there is no need for the TRAI to bring forward any new regulation.

As far as Set Top Boxes go, most respondents said Rental Only schemes should be brought in and technical interoperability was irrelevant.

Star felt that since more DTH platforms are likely to come in, the recommendations in the Consultation Paper should be held over for at least one year to watch the situation.


Latest Reads
HARMAN announces Priyanka Chopra as global brand ambassador

HARMAN International, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. focused on connected technologies for automotive, consumer and enterprise markets, today announced that actress, singer, producer and philanthropist Priyanka Chopra has been named a global brand ambassador for the...

Technology Hardware Components
Etere HSM expands interoperability with Grass Valley

Etere HSM features an integration with Grass Valley that improves interoperability, streamlines connectivity, enables faster content processing and includes deep archive capabilities. Etere introduces a new integration layer between Etere Hierarchical Storage Management (HSM) and Grass Valley...

Technology Hardware Components
Pune Times joins hands with the Pune Police to launch the 'City Safe' app, as part of #MakeMyCitySafe initiative

Pune Times, city supplement of leading media house, The Times of India, has joined hands with Pune Police to support an initiative for women’s safety in the city. Pune Times has launched its campaign #MakeMyCitySafe as a big shout out to the youth of Pune to come together to make the city safer...

Technology Software Applications
HAL Robotics ropes in Navanit Samaiyar as board member and advisor

MUMBAI: HAL Robotics has roped in Navanit Samaiyar as its board member and advisor. Samaiyar has a record of setting up, scaling and transforming businesses across a very wide cross section of industries spanning from IT/ ITeS to steel, telecom, engineering goods, earthmoving machinery, logistics...

Technology Hardware Components
Republic TV launches Android app

MUMBAI: Republic TV is on a roll. From rocking the ratings chart in launch week itself to going international, the channel has added one more accomplishment to its kitty. The Republic TV Android app is now live.

Technology Software Applications
STB cos in India, China enhancing features, providing customised solutions, Technavio enlists top vendors

MUMBAI: The global STB market is characterised by intense competition as the market is saturated in developed countries. The market share of these players is declining because of the entry of new players. The STB companies are enhancing the features of STBs and providing customised solutions to...

Technology Hardware Set-top Boxes
India's PFT Clear Media ERP suite to help US' PBS content delivery

MUMBAI: Prime Focus Technologies (PFT), the technology arm of Prime Focus, announced that its CLEAR™ Media ERP Suite has been selected by Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) to enhance their Network Operations Center (NOC) ecosystem efficiencies and sustainability, with the objective of reducing...

Technology Software Applications
Broadcasters, OTTs to gain as Via adds xHE-AAC at special rate

MUMBAI: Via Licensing Corporation, a intellectual property solutions provider, has announced the upcoming availability of Extended High Efficiency AAC (xHE-AAC) as part of the Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) patent pool. The expanded patent pool licence will be available at no additional cost to...

Technology Software Applications
Tata Comm to deliver Motorsport videos on global devices

MUMBAI: Tata Communications will now deliver video content for viewers' all devices over its global network. The two have partnered to power the growth of the network’s internet television platforms.

Technology Software Applications

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories