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NTC chooses Japan digital TV standard for RP

By Paolo Montecillo
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 19:26:00 06/11/2010

Filed Under: Television, Economy and Business and Finance

THE NATIONAL TELECOMMUnications Commission (NTC) has chosen the Japanese digital television standards for the Philippines after more than two years of deliberations, paving the way for the shift from the ?primitive? analog broadcast system to the new and more efficient technology.

NTC Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba and Deputy Commissioners Douglas Michael Mallillin and Jaime Fortes have signed a draft circular mandating the adoption in the country of the Integrated Services Digital Broadcast-Terrestrial (ISDB-T) television standards, the broadcast technology developed and used in Japan.

The draft circular, which was released Thursday, was signed and made into an official memorandum following a hearing with industry stakeholders, where no objections were raised.

?The ISDB-T standard shall be the sole standard in the delivery of digital terrestrial television services in the country,? the regulator said in its circular.

The NTC chose the Japanese standard over the European digital TV standards, which were determined to be more expensive if used in the Philippines.

The NTC said shifting to digital TV from the current analog system would allow for more channels, better video and audio quality and the delivery of high-definition content through a conventional aerial antenna instead of a satellite or cable connection.

?The ISDB-T is a flexible digital TV transmission system that is capable of providing three hierarchical modulations to fixed, mobile and handheld terminals without the need for an additional transmission frequency,? the NTC said.

The new standard was endorsed by the Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas (KBP), the umbrella organization representing almost all local broadcasters in the country.

GMA Network Inc., which is not a KBP member, also endorsed the adoption of the new system through a letter sent to NTC.

?We have assessed the prominent digital TV standards available and have determined ISDB-T to be technically suitable for our television broadcast industry,? GMA Network said.

Once TV stations start sending digital signals, households that use old analog television sets would have to buy ?set-top? boxes, which will process the digital signals. But most new television sets being sold today are digital-ready and will not need any new equipment to be able to display digital content.

The government has mandated a complete shift to digital TV in the country by 2015.



Copyright 2014 Philippine Daily Inquirer. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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