DD Freedish set to beam up to 250 channels under 12th Plan

NEW DELHI: Doordarshan’s free-to-air (FTA) direct-to-home (DTH) Freedish, which currently has only 64 slots for television channels and is expected to go up to 112 by March-end, has received a shot in the arm for upgradation to 250 TV channels under the 12th Plan.

Information and Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley told Parliament that the Department of Space had agreed in principle to provide additional transponders on new GSAT 15 satellite required for 250 TV channels

Meanwhile, he said that DD was facing issues in implementing Conditional Access System (CAS), which is a part of upgraded system. But it had now decided to adopt Indian Conditional Access System (Indian CAS), which is being finalised by Department of Electronics and Information Technology. As was reported earlier by Indiantelevision.com, DD is acquiring the Bangalore based ByDesign India’s CAS.

Late last year, the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DeitY) approved a proposal by ByDesign India to develop an Indian conditional access system. ByDesign was to receive a support amount of Rs 19.79 crore from DeitY to develop the new system in association with Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC).

The ByDesign model is totally indigenous and built for DVB-C setup. This CAS solution will enable broadcasters to control access to their services by viewers, and thereby enabling them to extend their business models to subscription based schemes. 

Apart from the TV channels, Freedish also beams 21 All India Radio (AIR) channels. 

DD director general C Lalrosanga had earlier told Indiantelevision.com that the DTH player will switch over to MPEG 4 from the current MPEG 2 in two phases. “The first phase may begin by early next month,” he informed.

Meanwhile even as regional channels of DD switched over to INSAT 4B, DD’s main channels have also shifted to GSAT 10, which was launched in September 2012. The regional channels were shifted in view of End of Life (EOL) of INSAT-3A as declared by Indian Space Research Organisation. Four new transponders have been provided for these channels on INSAT-4B by ISRO. 

It has 12 Ku-Band, 12 C-Band and 6 lower extended C-Band Transponders. 

Now GSAT 10 started transmission on C-Band transponders.

The channels that have been switched to GSAT 10 are DD National, DD News, DD Bharati, DD Sports, DD Urdu, DD India, Rajya Sabha TV and DD HD.


Department of Space sources told this website that GSAT 15 satellite will ultimately accommodate Freedish, as it has more capacity of transponders to provide more bandwidth and better coverage. 

GSAT-15 satellite, launched recently, has planned its mission for 12 years and this satellite will be located at same direction of INSAT-3A / INSAT-4B satellite at 93.5° East Longitude.

GSAT-15 carries 24 Ku-band transponders with 36 Mhz high bandwidth.

GSAT-15 also has two GAGAN navigational payloads and 2 Ku-Band beacons. This satellite will be use mainly for Direct to Home services, radio navigation services and VSAT services.

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