Digital TV standards battle ends: Logic prevails

Minister of Communications Radhakrishna “Roy” Padayachie has formally announced the department’s allegiance to the DVB-T2 digital terrestrial television (DTT) standard.

This comes after a recommendation from the Southern African Development Community (SADC) that the Southern African region adopt DVB-T2 as its DTT standard and a long battle between the European DVB-T and Japanese ISDB-T digital broadcasting standards in South Africa.

The committee of ministers responsible for Information and Communication Technology (ICT) for SADC recommended in November 2010 that the region adopt DVB-T2 using MPEG4 compression as the official DTT standard.

Padayachie’s confirmation that South Africa will stick with the DVB family of standards for terrestrial broadcasts should allow the industry to proceed with South Africa’s migration from analogue to digital broadcasting.

Brazilian advances confirmed

At a press briefing held in Midrand today, Padayachie confirmed that the Brazilian government had approached the South African government to consider ISDB-T after DVB-T had already been chosen as our national broadcasting standard.

This had been widely speculated before, but the Minister confirmed this for the first time today.

Deadline extended

Padayachie also announced that the deadline for analogue switch-off, which was 1 November 2011, would be moved to December 2013 in accordance with the recommendations of SADC.

The Minister emphasised that the decision was that of the South African government, ratified by cabinet, and not of the DoC alone.

The international cut-off date prescribed by the ITU is June 17 2015.

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Digital TV standards battle ends: Logic prevails