Dual illumination will lead to broadcaster-MSO disputes: Hathway

MUMBAI: The government's decision to implement the conditional access system (CAS) by way of dual illumination has created problems for the multi-system operators (MSOs) such as Hathway Cable and Datacom who have expressed reservations about the system.

 Officials of the Rajan Raheja owned Hathway Cable and Datacom, in which Star India has a strategic 26 per cent stake, have told the information and broadcasting ministry that the dual illumination process will complicate issues. They say that the plan is implementable only if all the MSOs and cable operators set up a parallel cable from the head end up to each subscribers house. One cable would have to carry all the pay channels unencrypted and one would have to carry the pay channels in an encrypted form. This would be impossible to implement in lieu of the cost and time constraints, they add.

The bone of contention being that in such a scenario, the cable reaching the subscriber's home must carry the pay channels both in the unencrypted and encrypted mode. However, Hathway officials claim that it is important to note that the entire cable TV network consists of a single cable interconnected from point to point albeit at various levels - trunk, distribution, last mile amongst others. Hence, each subscriber has only one cable coming into his home that carries the entire signal to him, add the officials.

While speaking to, Hathway Cable and Datacom vice president Neeraj Bhatia says: "A subscriber who procures the box will still continue to get all the pay channels in an unencrypted mode also. Hence, all the pay channels will still be seen by such a subscriber irrespective of the choice of channels submitted by him. Hence, most people who will procure the box will not actually subscribe to any pay channel."

Adding that this norm is some kind of a piracy, Bhatia says that it will also lead to greater disputes between the broadcasters and MSOs on account of the payments due to broadcasters from such subscribers. "MSOs will not be able to pay any broadcaster for such a box subscriber since the subscriber may not have opted for any channel and therefore will not be entitled to pay any charges. But broadcasters may feel otherwise."

Bhatia also added that the dual illumination system cannot be implemented in an analog system as it would be incapable of carrying the minimum number of stipulated channels - namely 30 FTA channels; 35 pay channels in unencrypted mode and 35 pay channels in an encrypted mode. "Most networks have the capacity to carry only between 67 and 80 channels. A digital system will be able to implement this plan since it sends its pay channels in a compressed form but the same is not true for analog," says Bhatia.

Bhatia also feels that the area-wise rollout doesn't make sense due to overlap issues. "It is not possible to clearly demarcate cities such as Mumbai or Delhi," adds Bhatia saying that genre wise rollout is the best option.

Bhatia feels that all these issues could have been averted if the pay channel broadcasters had declared their individual channel prices at the earliest in order to evade any such unfeasible option. "This would have also enable the MSOs to accurately work out the number of STBs required in the initial stages. Now, everyone is going by their own 'guess-timates' and playing a cautious game," adds Bhatia.

Latest Reads
TLC firmly establishes itself as a clear leader in lifestyle genre with 24% upswing in ratings

TLC, leading lifestyle channel from Discovery Communications India, soared to the top of Lifestyle genre with a 24% increase in ratings according to the latest BARC data*. TLC secured 8640 impressions ‘000 in week 11 as compared to 6972 impressions ‘000 in Week 10. The upsurge in ratings is...

Television TV Channels Factual & Documentary
Balaji Telefilms appoints Jyoti Deshpande as non-executive additional director

Balaji Telefilms has appointed Jyoti Deshpande as the non-executive additional director. The appointment, which was approved following a circular resolution by its board on 22 March, is in compliance with share subscription agreement entered into between Balaji and Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) on...

Television TV Channels People
Aaj Tak relaunches 'Seedhi Baat'

MUMBAI: TV Today Network has relaunched its big-ticket Hindi show Seedhi Baat. The show will be hosted by Sweta Singh, news anchor and executive editor of special programming at Aaj Tak. The first episode of the show, which  will air at 8 pm on 24 March, will feature BJP president Amit Shah as the...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Dsport tops BARC ratings with Nidahas Trophy viewership

MUMBAI: Dsport, which launched last year in February, became the top ranked sports channel according to Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) all-India data in week 11. Rishtey Cineplex attracted a big chunk of the Hindi-speaking audience while competing with pubcaster DD Sports.

Television TV Channels Sports
Zee TV’s ‘Ishq Subhan Allah’ year’s second highest weekday fiction launch across GECs

Zee TV recently put the spotlight on Triple Talaaq with its new fiction show Ishq Subhan Allah introducing viewers to the turbulent love story of Zara (Eisha Singh) and Kabeer (Adnan Khan) – an Islamic couple dealing with the issue first-hand. Raising pertinent questions about women having a say...

Television TV Channels GECs
&Privé HD’s Unforgettables at 9 property celebrates movies that have left an indelible mark

There are some movies that become a part of your life and you can’t help but watch them over and over again. There are some characters that reveal a hidden element of yourself that results in an instant connection. &Privé HD’s property ‘Unforgettables at 9’ brings such classics every Monday to...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
Living Foodz raises a Toast to India’s finest restaurants, night

India’s premium lifestyle channel, Living Foodz organized the second edition of Epicurean Guild Awards at an evening which saluted the game changers in India’s fine-dining, nightlife and lifestyle entertainment space. Held on March 22 at Sahara Star, Mumbai, the event was curated by Chef Manu...

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
Zee Anmol regains top Hindi GEC spot across genres

BENGALURU: Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd’s (Zeel) free-to-air (FTA) Hindi GEC Zee Anmol has returned to second place in Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) list of top 10 channels across genre in week 11 of 2018 (Saturday, 10 March 2018 to Friday, 16 March 2018). The numero uno position...

Television TV Channels Viewership
Emerald Media buys minority stake in Global Sports Commerce

MUMBAI: Emerald Media, the Pan-Asia company backed by global investment firm KKR, has acquired a significant minority stake in sports technology and management company Global Sports Commerce (GSC) through a combination of primary and secondary investments.

Television TV Channels Sports

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories