TVs might age before migration PDF Print E-mail
Four million people might be left in the dark if their TVs aren`t up to scratch after digital migration.

The National Consumer Forum is worried that four million homes might be left in the dark by the time the state has gone through the migration to digital terrestrial television.

The forum says that even though low-income houses may receive set-top boxes, their TV sets might not be able to interpret the signal in three years` time.

“Government has pledged to subsidise set-top boxes for more than four million houses, but what we are worried about is that after the migration has taken place in three years` time, those TV sets they own might not be able to interpret the converted analogue signal,” says National Consumer Forum chairman Thami Bolani.

The Department of Communications (DOC) has rubbished these claims, stating the technology will be sufficient for future digital terrestrial television.

“If you look at how the set-top boxes work, they basically receive the digital signal and convert it into an analogue signal, so I see no way that present digital will become obsolete in the near future,” says DOC spokesman Joe Makhafola.

Africa Analysis media analyst David Moore says only analogue TV sets will be redundant after the migration.

“By 1 November 2011, any household still using an analogue television without a digital decoder will not be able to watch any TV stations.

“In fact, government is soon going to block all imports of analogue TVs. They haven`t set a date for that, but one can assume that it will take place sometime in the transition period.”

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