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Panel to draw up blueprint for digitisation of TV broadcasting
[April 07, 2006]

Panel to draw up blueprint for digitisation of TV broadcasting

(Ecomonic Times, The (India) (KRT) Via Thomson Dialog NewsEdge) Apr. 7--KOLKATA, India -- To give digitisation in India a fillip, the Planning Commission has set up a 17-member committee to review the existing TV broadcasting system in the country. The panel would come out with a blueprint for the sector's digitisation.

The committee has been set up under the chairmanship of Planning Commission member secretary RR Saha and has representatives from Nasscom, Mait, Prasar Bharati, Cetma, TV production houses and joint secretary of PMO.

The committee was scheduled first meet on April 5 to hold preliminary talks on the digitisation of the TV broadcasting system. A member of the committee, on condition of anonymity, told ET: "The Planning Commission has told us to prepare a road map for shifting from the analogue technology to digital technology."

The Planning Commission's move has been prompted by a recent report by Hong Kong-based Media Partners Asia (MPA), which says India is set to emerge as Asia's leading revenue generating pay TV market by '15, with multichannel video industry (cable, direct-to-home, and internet protocol television) turnover growing from $3.6bn in '05 to $7.2bn by '10 and $10.5bn by '15.

"And this may happen when India adopts digitisation," said the member. Digitisation will help TV viewers get more channels in the same bandwidth.

"An analogue technology only permits 100-105 channels to be broadcast. But the digital technology will be capable to broadcast 400-500 channels. The quality of transmission will also improve significantly," senior officials of the entertainment industry said.

TV manufacturers also want the Centre to move to digitised TV broadcasting system. Senior officials of Videocon, the largest TV manufacturer in the country, said, "The move will further boost sales of CTVs in the country."

The MPA report further says the regional pay TV sector in Asia-Pacific, with $18 billion revenues in 2005, could grow at a CAGR of 13 percent over the next five years and 10 percent over the next decade to reach $32 billion by 2010 and over $45 billion by 2015.

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