Friday, July 8, 2016

Concerns Remain as Nigerians Await Digital Migration

Emma Okonji, Nigeria Today

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With less than one year to the planned digital migration, Nigerians continue to fret over the country’s ability to finally cross the hurdle, given that the inadequate technology-intensive system could mar the migration process, writes Emma Okonji

Having failed twice in 2012 and 2015 to migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting, Nigeria is making another effort to the meet the new June 20, 2017 deadline.
Apart from finance, which had been attributed as the major reason for the past failures of Nigeria to migrate from analogue to digital broadcasting, experts had since identified other key factors. They factors include lack of technology-intensive system, irregular power supply, and complex systematic social project. But StarTimes, one of the leading digital-TV operator in Africa, covering 80per cent of the continent’s population with a massive distribution network of 200 brand halls, 3,000 convenience stores and 5,000 distributors, has made bold to say it has developed solutions that will assist Nigeria succeed in her next phase of migration from analogue to digital broadcasting.
Addressing the challenges
No doubt, there are many homes in Nigeria that have television sets but not many of them are compliant to digital migration. The lack of technology-intensive system, uncertain power supply, lack of money and complex systematic social project have locked several homes out of the global village called digital broadcast.
But the President, StarTimes Group, Mr. Pang Xinxing, wants to change all of that with a simplified, robust and affordable pay TV aimed at emerging market across Africa.
Xinxing recently spoke on how he had designed a model, which he tagged ‘Advance Hand-in-Hand to Jointly Create the Future,’ to realise digitalisation of broadcasting and TV in Africa. ...
The Chinese view
The Councilor of the Information Department at the Chinese Foreign Ministry, Mr. Zhao Shiren, stated that China-Africa relationship has reached a new dimension as helping in the transition from analogue to digital will further boost their cooperation.
He disclosed that Africa lacks the infrastructure, human resources capacity, information society building, security, TV migration that are all useful for any nation’s development, but with the support of Star Times, which is now seen as carrying China’s public diplomacy, that will be a thing of the past.
According to Shiren, at the end of the opening session, some African nations did not only saw the need to catch the vision but also made their decisions formal in black and white. The management of Star Times Group signed three agreements with representatives of Ghana, Zimbabwe and Ethiopia for the launch of StarTimes satellite Television in their countries.” ...
So far, Star Times has established subsidiaries in 30 African countries. They are Nigeria, Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Mozambique, Guinea, Congo-Kinshasa, among others, where it had already started operations.

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