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Philippines urged to adopt DVB-T2

Thu, 30 Jun 2011 13:02

A joint delegation of the Digital Video Broadcasting (DVB) industry led consortium and European Union representatives have met with The Philippines’ National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) to present the technical superiority of the DVB-T2 digital terrestrial television (DTT) standard over the dated Japanese ISDB-T system.

Screen Africa readers will recall how last year former South African Minister of Communications Siphiwe Nyanda called for a review of the cabinet-adopted DVB-T standard in favour of ISDB-T against industry wishes. Siphiwe’s successor formally announced in November 2010 that South Africa would adopt the second generation DVB-T2 for its digital migration.

In The Philippines, DVB and the EU presented the economic advantages and benefits of the economies of scale of DVB-T2. They hope that the NTC will reconsider its deadline of 30 June for its final decision on the adoption of a digital standard. The delegation called for a proper DVB-T2 field trial to be held so that a full comparison can be made of the competing standards.

“It has been proven that under similar conditions, DVB-T2 either provides nearly 100% more payload or the transmitter power can be reduced by 8-10 dB, which results in a drastic decrease of capital investment and operational costs for the transmitter network. Owing to the significant success of DVB-T2, low cost STBs are already available for as little as 45 USD in UK retail stores. In addition, there are commercially available low cost DVB-T2 HD set-top boxes operating in 6 MHz channels, as required in the Philippines,” commented Peter Siebert, Executive Director, DVB.

DVB-T2 is the world’s most advanced DTT system offering higher efficiency, robustness and flexibility than first generation DTT systems such as DVB-T and ISDB-T. It builds on the basis of DVB-T and by adding new modulation, coding and error correction techniques a dramatic efficiency increase is achieved over any other DTT system in the world. DVB-T2 also provides excellent performance for mobile reception. DVB-T2 supports the main frequency bandwidths of 6,7 and 8 MHz, covering all possible broadcasting scenarios around the world, including 6 MHz countries such as the Philippines.

“The growing interest in DVB-T2 around the world seems to be a symptom of mature thinking.  Countries are now looking for the best long-term solution, rather than a quick-fix using inferior technologies.  This trend definitely favours DVB-T2,” said Phil Laven, Chairman, DVB.

Since the first DVB-T2 services were launched in December 2009 in the UK, 2010 and early 2011 have seen services launched in Italy, Sweden and Finland. The total number of countries that have declared their intention to deploy the state-of-the-art second-generation digital terrestrial television (DTT) transmission system now stands at a remarkable 28. In the Asian region, India, Singapore and Sri Lanka have chosen DVB-T2 and tests have been carried out in Malaysia and Thailand.