New launch date for digital TV in South Africa

Cabinet has approved the beginning of the dual-illumination period for South Africa’s digital TV broadcast signal. The period is set to start on 1 February 2016.

The dual-illumination period refers to an interim phase during which both analogue and digital terrestrial television signals are allowed to be transmitted before the analogue signal will be switched off.

The news comes after Minister of Communications Faith Muthambi said she would attend the first installations of government-subsidised set-top boxes in Keimoes in the Northern Cape from 17 December.

The set-top boxes are decoder-like devices which enable TV sets to receive South Africa’s new digital broadcast signal.

“The migration from analogue to digital broadcasting services releases the much-needed radio frequency spectrum suitable for the provision of mobile broadband services,” said Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe.

“This will increase the competitiveness of the South African economy by revitalising the broadcasting industry, strengthening the electronics manufacturing industry, creating jobs, and developing more local and diverse broadcast content.”

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New launch date for digital TV in South Africa