Namibia beats SA to digital terrestrial TV

Windhoek - The state broadcaster Namibian Broadcasting Corporation has introduced its first phase of switching off analogue viewing and moving toward digital terrestrial viewing in central Namibia, it announced on Sunday.

"The Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) has successfully switched off analogue viewing on Saturday night in the central towns of Windhoek, Rehoboth and Okahandja," it said.

This was done in collaboration with the two existing free-to-air stations, One Africa Television and the religious channel TBN (Trinity Broadcasting Network).

DTT Commercial Manager at NBC Ockert Jansen said: "Namibia is among the top four countries in the SADC region that have started with switching off analogue viewing.

"The NBC's population coverage with a digital TV signal stands at 66.6%, just below the target of 67% by 17 June 2015."

Namibia's analogue viewers must buy Digital Terrestrial decoders - albeit at subsidised prices - in order to view seven television channels including NBC 1, 2 and 3, One Africa TV, TBN, EDU TV as well as the soon-to-be launched Namibian music channel, This TV and 10 radio stations.

Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) is the broadcasting of terrestrial television in digital format. Analogue viewing requires a large amount of bandwidth, compared to digital signals, which are compressed, allowing more channels to be broadcast on the same bandwidth.

In 2006, the International Telecommunications Union decided that all countries in Europe, Africa, Middle East and Iran should migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting services by 2015 to free up bandwidth.

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