Having decided opted to go with Japan’s Integrated Services Digital Broadcast (ISDB) technology over the European standard for its Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) broadcast service, the Philippines’ National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) has announced that migration to digital will take ten years (rather than its earlier estimate of five) to complete. The new target for completing the switch-over is 2020.

‘This year, the NTC has commenced the transition of the broadcast industry from analogue to digital,’ the regulatory body said. ‘The NTC estimates full migration from analogue to digital TV technology within the next five-to-ten years.’

The Philippines Government is now considering delaying the compulsory transition of all analogue television service providers to digital TV, and for the termination of all analogue TV broadcast transmissions from the earlier target of the close of 2015.

Using Japan's Integrated Services Digital Broadcast technology as the Philippines’ standard for DTT broadcasting means that the expertise  of the Filipino engineers who are to  be trained by Japanese experts can be exported to other countries intending to adopt the Japanese standard for digital TV.

The Japanese government is also being requested by the Philippines to subsidise the cost of set-top boxes. 'The Japanese Government will invest in a set-top box factory in the Philippines, but we are also asking them to subsidise the boxes,' said Commission on Information and Communications Technology Chairman, Ivan Uy.

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