Digital broadcasters association of Kenya has decried continued delay in migrating television viewing to the digital platform saying it negatively affects their individual members’ investments.
Majority of players had injected huge amounts of capital in their ventures only for the delay to lead to hesitation by Kenyans to acquire the type approved set top boxes thereby translating to huge losses.
The association equally upheld the concern by their decoder counterparts noting that Kenyans have been deprived of increased choice in their television viewing options.
Through digital television signal, Kenyans should be enjoying up to 22 Standard Definition (S.D.) Channels in the same bandwidth that previously produced one Channel on the analogue platform but currently continue enjoying fewer channels due to the delayed migration and slow decoder uptake.
Stakeholders who attended a digital migration forum organised by Consumer federation of Kenya(Cofek) last week, remained optimistic that the broadcast sector will continue to attract increased investment with the current prospects of growth.
Pan African Network Group (PANG) one of the licensed broadcast signal distributors noted that the company has so far invested over Sh 6 Billion in three years since they were granted a B.S.D. license in October of 2011 and created over 700 employment opportunities for Kenyans.
This investment will complement the investment by the other media houses who have invested around Sh 40 Billion collectively thereby driving the broadcast sector in Kenya into a robust industry that will see all major stakeholders achieve their goal to drive access to information while availing entertaining and informative content across Kenyan households.
With the 1st and 2nd phases of the analogue switch off having kicked off on 30th December 2014 and 2nd February 2015 respectively, stakeholders were optimistic the rest of the country will effectively migrate to the digital platform during the scheduled 3rd phase expected to commence on 30th March 2015.
The forum called on Kenyans to acquire type approved set top boxes of their choice there being various options that they could consider including:
Price of set top boxes had considerably dropped to an average of Sh 4,000 for the free to air option and Sh 1,700 for the pay television option thereby ensuring that the majority of Kenyans have access to digital television.
With these developments, the country remains on the right track towards making digital television a reality in Kenya, they said.