Digital migration fine-tunes growth prospects for Botswana broadcasting
New state-owned television stations are expected to go live in Botswana as the country edges closer to full digital transmission in October.
“The analogue switch off will constitute the completion of the digital migration process to Botswana committed under the Geneva 2006 (GE06) Agreement of the International Telecommunications,” said John Thomas Dipowe, spokesperson for Botswana government Communications and Information Systems.
The Geneva 2006 (GE06) Agreement obliges member countries to migrate their terrestrial transmission from analogue to digital to enhance access to television services by leveraging technological advances brought up by digital technology.
Dipowe said the new development will stimulate the broadcasting industry by driving up demand for local content.
He said the department of broadcasting will launch three distinct television channels comprising a Btv 24 News Channel, Btv One Channel and Btv Two channel, accessed through set top boxes already available in the market.
“The development comes after the government has completed the installation and testing of 45 digital transmitters countrywide which will enable the public to receive all public and private television services,” said Dipowe.
Botswana’s digital transmission journey began in 2012 when the National Broadcasting Board (NBB) invited the nation to review a draft licensing framework, as the country prepared to switch from analogue to digital television broadcasting.
Authorities in Botswana eventually adopted Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting – Terrestrial (ISDB-T), as its digital terrestrial television (DTT) standard, after extensive consultation on the two leading international standards - Digital Video Broadcasting-Television second generation (DVB-T2) and ISDB-T.
Botswana is on record as having favoured the ISDB-T standard in the context of its adaptability as a platform for socio-economic development, as well as entertainment.
ISDB-T system was originally developed in Japan and has been adopted by several countries, including most of South America.