Jijiwa, A. Digital broadcasting and advertising: The Challenges. Dominick, J. New York: McGraw Hill. The names and email addresses entered in this journal site will be used exclusively for the stated purposes of this journal and will not be made available for any other purpose or to any other party. Submission of the manuscript represents that the manuscript has not been published previously and is not considered for publication elsewhere. Home Archives Vol 2 No 7 Articles plugins. Published Nov 24, Vol 2 No 7 The digitization of analog broadcasting signal has brought a significant change in the broadcasting environment today.
This means introducing a new way to transmit content, a new and improved mechanism that will provide better reception and increase user satisfaction.
- Cooperative Communications (Foundations and Trends in Networking).
- Digital terrestrial television.
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This work has taken into account the technical aspect of concerned with digital terrestrial broadcasting, it's evolution, prospects and challenges in Nigeria. Findings show that the future is bright if the challenges such as power, government policies are addressed. But by early , their importance was apparent. The cost of digital television was a prohibitive factor in the take up of digital television and the majority of viewers were not convinced of its value.
The Business Review Weekly in fact labelled digital television a flop, as only around set top boxes had been sold. This amounted only to 0. In the following months, prohibitive cost, combined with accusations about poorly thought out protectionist policy which only benefited commercial broadcasters, continued to be proffered as the principal reasons Australians had not embraced digital television.
A number of solutions were advanced to deal with the cost issue, including introducing a common set top box for both free-to-air and subscription television. This suggestion was immediately rejected by pay television operators, most likely because they saw it as providing yet another advantage to free-to-air operators.
After an auction of datacasting licences was postponed in when potential operators withdrew their expressions of interest, citing the overly onerous restrictions, the Government promised to review the regulations. The media appeared to grasp every opportunity to emphasise arguments about the prohibitive cost of digital television and consequent low take up rates for the technology. Reports took the line that ordinary people were not so privileged. They had to be content with experiencing wide screen digital at their local pub or electrical goods store.
It declared multi channelling limitations, restrictions on entry to free-to-air broadcasting and datacasting licence conditions detrimental to the communications market. It called for technologies to be synchronised and consumer choice, competition and innovation promoted. Multi channelling could be possible during the time broadcasters did not provide HD services. Similarly, allowing free-to-air broadcasters to multi channel could help them make better use of expensive broadcasting rights, and in turn, deliver greater consumer choice.
Moreover, the ACCC was clearly sceptical of arguments that multi channelling fragmented audiences and concluded:. No persuasive evidence has been presented to date to indicate that removing the prohibition on multi-channelling would harm the [free-to-air] sector.
The various methods of TV transmission
The easing of the restrictions on multi-channelling would provide [free-to-air] operators with the ability to offer new services to consumers and has the potential to provide a wider range of services to consumers. With regards to datacasting, the ACCC added its criticism to that of many others. Existing restrictions discouraged innovation and denied datacasters the opportunity to explore consumer tastes and demand.
They needed to be removed. It called for less restriction so as to allow competitive forces to determine which broadcasters survive in the market place. This made a proposed switch off date appear increasingly optimistic. It led Williams to speculate that a possible solution may be to force people to purchase digital sets by setting a date beyond which retailers would not be allowed to sell analogue televisions. It claimed further that while it had not committed to providing extra money to maintain the channels, it had maintained the level of ABC funding in real terms since their launch.
It accused the ABC of ineffective forward planning which had funded the multi channels from one-off savings.
As there had been no commitment given to ongoing funding, it was incumbent on the ABC to identify ongoing cost savings to finance the channels. According to this assessment, viewers wanted better pictures, not more channels. The channel consisted originally of time shifted programming. Pay television was particularly critical given that anti siphoning restrictions prevented it from showing a number of popular sporting events.
ATSC, DTMB, DVB-T/DVB-T2, and ISDB-T
ABC 3 was promoted as an incentive for families to convert to digital technology. Between and February , in an effort to find out which parts of the digital television regulatory framework needed the most modification, the Government directed the Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts to conduct a series of reviews.
Findings from all reviews, except the duration of the simulcast period, were released in February Most conclusions were notable in that they were brief, restated ongoing issues and provided little indication about whether the Government intended to embark on new policy directions.
The review of HDTV on the other hand, found that it was becoming more accepted. Some stakeholders were cautiously positive and acknowledged it may be a means to drive digital uptake. Others were more enthusiastic and considered it would certainly be a factor as prices of equipment fell and more HD content became available. Release of a House of Representatives Inquiry report into digital television coincided with publication of the thematic reviews. According to Digital Broadcasting Australia figures, in September , only approximately Australian homes or 13 per cent of Australian television homes , had free-to-air digital capability.
The inquiry heard a variety of explanations for low take up.
Digital Terrestrial TV
Source Bill Leak . The Inquiry was notable in that marked disagreement among the free-to-air broadcasters surfaced. On the issue of content as an incentive for take up, the Seven Network concurred with media commentators like Crispin Hull, who had consistently argued variety of content was the key to encouraging consumer interest in digital television.
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Hull noted that if the Government had allowed networks to broadcast more program streams, people would:. We would have had a choice of 15 programs instead of five. A new TV set would have been worth getting. The Nine and Ten Networks disagreed. They considered increased viewer choice would result in poor quality programming and impose extra costs on broadcasters.
The networks also had opposing views on HD as a means to drive digital take up.
Nine and Ten believed an increase in the HD quota would have a positive effect. Regardless of the arguments about availability, content, HD and the potential of interactive services, the absolute bottom line with regards to digital television take up was still cost. Moreover, while costs remained high, consumers were content to forgo the digital television experience. The period of concentrated review of digital television and a continued barrage of media criticism that accompanied it, confirmed what lack of viewer enthusiasm had been indicating, digital television was not an overwhelming success.
The answer to this digital dilemma, according to Senator Helen Coonan, who had replaced Daryl Williams as Minister in , would be found in a March paper which put forward new proposals and outlined preferred new transition options. Other matters that would have an impact on the way in which digital television would evolve were dealt with in the legislation. Allocation of commercial television licences for services which would operate outside the BSB when the moratorium on new commercial licences ended in was also made subject to Ministerial approval. As could be expected, the various arms of the media were divided on the merits of the proposed reforms.
Pay television operator, News Limited, believed the package would continue to protect a free-to-air broadcaster oligopoly. Free-to-air broadcasters, especially Publishing and Broadcasting Limited PBL, owner of the Nine Network were generally supportive, although they expressed some reservations. After much debate, many threats, and some compromises, on 18 October , the media reform package was passed by Federal Parliament.
The plan reset the conversion process timetable to commence in —12, justifying delay in the context of the experience of other countries which had been forced to revise original switchover dates. Approximately 85 per cent of the Australian population was able to access digital services from local free-to-air sources and digital take up was almost 30 per cent. Further the plan noted that unless conversion sped up, as other countries completed transition, Australia may no longer be able to purchase analogue transmission and reception equipment or analogue programming.
So the plan was that government investment in the conversion process, which had already provided funding to the ABC, SBS and regional broadcasters for digital transmission, would be enhanced. The Opposition claimed none of the proposals would drive digital take up. According to Labor spokesperson, Lindsay Tanner:. There is no money for the creation of new digital content to encourage consumers to invest in the equipment and there is no money to ensure that the poor and disadvantaged won't be left staring at blank screens when analog [sic] TV is switched off.
Spectrum for these datacasting transmission services was due to become available as a result of amendments to the Radiocommunications Act and the end of trials of datacasting services which were supposed to be completed at the end of Spectrum used in these trials was therefore potentially vacant for use by Channel A to provide a free-to-air digital only service to domestic television receivers and Channel B to deliver television content over hand-held mobile television devices. It was offensive, according to one commentator, that Minister Coonan presented this policy as a win for consumers:.
The networks already have too much spectrum and power and too little competition. That's the major reason why at least a decade after the Government first started trying to develop a policy that brought Australia into the digital age, it is still deferring the starting date while other nations have entered it.
With nothing in the revised package for anyone but the networks, why would anyone support the proposed abolition of [media] ownership rules that, however anachronistic they might be in a digital age, protect the fragile diversity of the established media today? Unless there are new entrants, new competitors and new and compelling content, where is the trade-off for less diversity of ownership and content? That makes them not just dreadful but dangerous policy. In reply to this type of criticism, Senator Coonan argued that selling the Channel A and B licences would be crucial in accelerating digital switch over and any objections to expanding the pool of bidders for the channels was short sighted.
The Channel A and B discussion reflected wider concerns about the extent to which the media reform package would deliver diversity, but despite many objections from this perspective, as noted earlier in this paper, it passed both Houses of Parliament in late Telecommunications analyst, Paul Budde, made the point soon after that sales of the A and B licences could provide an opportunity for exciting new services to emerge and could amount to hundreds of millions of dollars, depending on what the Government decided could be done with the spectrum.
There appeared to be a high level of interest in using the Channel B licence for mobile television, James Packer for one indicating that PBL could make a bid for Channel B in partnership with Foxtel. However, guidelines it produced in mid led to accusations that its content definitions for the channels made Channel A at least commercially unviable. Channel A and B spectrum had not been allocated when the election was called. Despite the problems with Channels A and B, during , there were a number of indications that plans for digital conversion were finally proceeding at a greater pace.
The launch of a free electronic program guide was seen as the commercial television industry finally embracing the digital age and the numbers of households that had converted to digital rose from 10 in to 2. Source: Paul Budde . It was not clear about what conditions of access Labor intended to apply to the auctions, however. At the end of April , Senator Coonan accused Labor of having no plan for the rollout of digital television.