Technology

Uncertainty looms over 30 June deadline for cable TV digitisation

MUMBAI: Uncertainty looms large over India‘s first target of cable TV digitisation in the four metros by 30 June.


The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) is yet to come out with its tariff policy and rules for digital addressable systems (DAS). This is unlikely to happen next week as well with the Supreme Court asking Trai to wait for due turn to hear the sector regulator‘s plea on the tariff order for DAS.


Trai had approached the Supreme Court to permit it to fix the tariff rates as it is constrained by an interim order by the apex court that has allowed broadcasters to charge 42 per cent of their cable rates from DTH and other digital addressable service providers (Trai had fixed 35 per cent).


"It looks like the deadline of 30 June for the complete switchover from analogue to digital in the four metros will get delayed by a few months. There is no urgency on the part of Trai to come out with a policy framework for DAS. The industry needs time to get everything in order for the digital switchover to happen smoothly and effectively," said the head of a leading MSO on condition of anonymity.


The various stakeholders of the broadcast industry are awaiting Trai‘s order before they can stitch commercial deals with their partners to roll out digital addressable cable. The multi-system operators (MSOs) and last mile operators have to conclude revenue share arrangements. Broadcasters will also have to get into agreements with the MSOs on pricing of their content. Other contentious issues like basic tier need to guided by a policy framework.


The government, however, has stated clearly that there would be no delay. Information & Broadcasting Secretary Uday Varma has publicly stated that the 30 June deadline for digitisation in the four metros "is sacrosanct".


"Nobody knows whether that 30 June deadline is sacred anymore. The government has stayed firm but the industry needs time to work upon it. This can only happen after the rules are laid down by the sector regulator," said the head of a television channel distribution company.


The digitisation in the four metros would require a deployment of around 10 million set-top boxes (STBs) and huge investments.


"The companies will have to go to their respective boards and draw up a business plan. They will have to know their cash flows as it would require huge investments. Adequate time should be given for a proper rollout," said a senior executive who leads operations of a distribution platform.


The remark by Firhad Hakim ?Bobby‘, the Urban Development Minister who is said to be close to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, has lent uncertainty to the mood for cable TV digitisation in Kolkata. "We were not consulted on this issue. If Trai or other agencies had discussed it with erstwhile CPM government, we are not responsible for that," the minister had said.


"Other political leaders have not opposed the deadline for cable TV digitisation yet. So we don‘t know how the remark by a lone minister would influence the deadline. The more important thing is that the rules have not yet come from Trai. We have to be careful that the digitisation is properly implemented this time. People shouldn‘t lose their confidence on digitisation because of faulty implementation," said the CEO of a MSO who did not want his name to be revealed.

Latest Reads

http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/05/16/divesh.jpg?itok=zBE4YL3k
Livestreaming App SWOO sees momentum in India; Launches Trivia Format in India

SWOO, a leading global livestreaming platform established in Middle East, today announced the launch of its SWOO TRIVIA SHOW ? a celebrity hosted live video streaming game show for Indians. SWOO is a user friendly, engaging and feature-rich live broadcasting app available across Android/ iOS/ Web...

Technology Software Applications
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/05/14/TiVo-800.jpg?itok=YeoN1Hcd
TiVo exits STB business

MUMBAI: TiVo is exiting the manufacturing, sales and distribution of set-top boxes to a yet-undisclosed third party, the company has said.

Technology Hardware Set-top Boxes
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/05/09/iot.jpg?itok=8nXgmc_U
IET India IoT Panel joins hands with exhibitions india group for the 3rd edition of IoT india congress

IoT India Congress is India?s Platform of Platforms for the Internet of Things conceptualized by IET India IoT Panel, a think tank constituted by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) India. The 3rd edition of IoT India Congress will be hosted in collaboration with India?s leading...

Technology Software Firmware
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/05/08/lexi.jpg?itok=uPD543QG
Tata Elxsi's Automation suite adopted by pan-European Media and Telecommunications Company

Tata Elxsi, a global design and technology services company, announced the licensing of its integrated test automation and monitoring suite ?FalconEye? to a pan-European media and telecommunications company for OTT automation and improving streaming performance.

Technology Software Firmware
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/04/13/nabshow.jpg?itok=S9rP2yss
Verimatrix recognized for contributions to latin american Pay-TV market with PRODU award win at NAB Show

LAS VEGAS: Verimatrix, a specialist in securing and enhancing revenue for network-connected devices and services, has received the PRODU Award for Best Pay-TV Technology Contribution on behalf of its MultiRights? OTT solution. MultiRights helps service providers effectively navigate the modern OTT...

Technology Software Firmware
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/04/09/magai.jpg?itok=233hZ8S7
Amagi debuts machine-learning powered content-preparation suite

Amagi, a cloud-based technology provider for media processing, has launched Tornado, a machine learning-based content preparation service that enables TV networks and content owners to scale their operations and accelerate broadcast workflows.

Technology Hardware Components
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/03/08/tivo.jpg?itok=1e68Zg0C
Sharp and TiVo extend interactive program guide deal to power content Discovery across entertainment devices

MUMBAI: TiVo Corporation (NASDAQ: TIVO), a global leader in entertainment technology and audience insights, today announced that Sharp Corporation will further utilize TiVo?s G-Guide HTML across Sharp 4K smart TVs and Ultra HD Blu-ray recorders in Japan, TiVo?s G-Guide xD app and remote schedule...

Technology Hardware Components
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/01/25/priyanka.jpg?itok=s2F-oxzy
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
http://www.indiantelevision.com/sites/default/files/styles/340x340/public/images/tv-images/2018/01/24/etere_0.jpg?itok=PCzLNCEq
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

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories