Lopez-owned broadcasting giant ABS-CBN, which has been undertaking digital terrestrial TV (DTT) test broadcasts since August, said last week that the public is already clamoring for a shift to digital TV and that there’s no reason to further delay its rollout.
ABS-CBN marketing executive Miguel Mercado said in a media briefing in San Fernando, Pampanga that “test broadcasts on DTT have convinced free-TV or non-cable households that digital TV migration will give them clearer and better quality viewing experience.”
Mercado said the wide channel options enabled by the digital multi-frequency platform, as well as the dramatic improvement of signal quality or reception, is key source of satisfaction for viewers of DTT.
Ninety percent of the total Philippine viewing public is on non-cable free-TV, according to an ABS-CBN study.
The TV network began its DTT trial broadcasts in August this year in selected households belonging to D-E sectors in the towns of Mexico in Pampanga, and San Miguel, San Ildefonso, and San Rafael in Bulacan.
The DTT trial broadcasts were spurred by a National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) memorandum circular in 2010, which picked the Japanese standard ISDB-T (Integrated Services Digital Broadcast-Terrestrial) as the country’s DTT platform.
In its circular, the NTC noted ISDB-T is much affordable over Europe’s DVB-T or Digital Video Broadcasting-Terrestrial.
An ABS-CBN report, for instance, quotes an ISDB-T set-top box as 60 percent cheaper than DVB-T at P2,500.
Other broadcast networks that have undertaken DTT test broadcast in the country include Net-25, GemTV, and government TV station NBN (National Broadcasting Network).
The NTC decision, however, is still under review by Malacanang as the government is reportedly is keen on giving a second look at DVB-T.
GMA-7, which has also relayed its intention to migrate to digital TV, is supporting the European standard DVB-T. – Marlon Magtira, dated 25 September 2011, 10:42 PM.