Broadcasting News in South Africa
TV, Digital TV, FM, Digital radio - what's coming up...

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TV and DIGITAL TV  (DTV)

Digital TV projects have already been started by Sentech. New transmitters being installed are all digital ready - one has just been installed at the Ubombo transmitting station in Northern Natal for SABC1.

By 2015 all TV worldwide has to be digital, according to an accord signed by all countries. Within the next year, set-top boxes will be on sale so that you can look at digital TV transmissions on your old analogue TV set. Digital TV transmissions in South Africa are starting in November 2008, with a gradual countrywide rollout.  America is swopping over to digital transmissions only on 17th February 2009. By 1st November 2011 South Africa will be terminating all analogue TV transmissions, so if you haven't got a settop box, you will not be able to watch TV off air.

There is still discussion going on about whether to broadcast on different frequencies for different areas, or to make the whole country operate on one frequency per service. This TV service is known as DVB-T

New services will be launched soon, with many new players. Vodacom and other cellular companies want to have transmitters broadcasting TV to cellphones that are capable of receiving these signals - this is known as DVB-H

RADIO

Transmitters are already operating that transmit digital FM radio. Once these test transmissions are deemed successful, further rollout will take place.

To receive these signals you will have to purchase a digital radio that is able to decode a digital signal.

CELL PHONE TV

The cellphone operators are going ahead full steam ahead to install new digital transmitters around the country to transmit cellphone TV. This will cost the consumers, of course, but they forsee a big demand among the soccer fans during the 2010 world cup. Cellphone manufacturers are working hard to upgrade their battery capacities to be able to handle TV viewing on the cellphone, which would normally chew batteries.