Tests conducted by the Southern African Digital Broadcasting Association (SADIBA) has revealed that an outdoor antenna costing around R290 would be required to receive digital terrestrial television (DTT) signals in South Africa.
Responding to a question at a recent South African Communications Forum press briefing, SADIBA’s Dave Hagen explained that viewers in certain coverage areas may be able to use an indoor antenna.
However, after running trials SADIBA has recommended to the Department of Communications that an outdoor wideband grid antenna specified for UHF channels 21–69 be used in SA.
Hagen said that they estimated that around 3.5-million households would need a new antenna, which comes to about R1-billion.
Local antenna makers have been made aware of the recommendation and the DoC has been informed about the costs, Hagen said.
The DoC is trying to subsidise antennas for poor households, Hagen said.
Government has announced plans to subsidise to the tune of R2.45-billion the DTT set-top boxes (STBs) that people will need to receive digital broadcasts on their existing TVs .
This is expected to provide 5-million households with STBs.