DTT Decoders Flying Off the Shelves

The Namibian Broadcasting Corporation (NBC) says Namibians are very receptive to the introduction of digital terrestrial television (DTT) and sales of decoders have increased tremendously since the launch.

Ockert Jansen, NBC’s commercial manager: DTT, told New Era that since launching the DTT road show campaign, dubbed the ‘ The Great Digital Journey,’ over 10 000 decoders were sold.

DTT refers to the broadcasting of terrestrial television in digital format and local households need to purchase decoders to switch from analogue to digital television as analogue would eventually be switched off after June 2015.

“As you might be aware, at the launch of DTT, sales were very slow and mostly concentrated around the capital (Windhoek), but as we started rolling it out to other towns and regions, our sales gradually increased,” stated Jansen.

He said after launching the road show campaign in June and screening the FIFA 2014 World Cup, sales increased tremendously.

The road show started in Windhoek, then went to Otjozondjupa Region – to Otjiwarongo, Okakarara, Okondjatu, Kalkveld and Outjo.

The NBC team then travelled to the northeast to the Kavango and Zambezi regions. “We did Kamanjab and now we are currently in Opuwo. We are going to do the south, central and far north, the coastal areas and the east,” he said.

The road shows are planned as per schedule towards the end of this year and early next year.

Jansen could however not say how many decoders were sold per region or town, but that the best sales were recorded in Windhoek, Otjiwarongo, Katima Mulilo and Rundu, while they expect to do well in Mariental and Keetmanshoop.

“The only challenge is that in some of the smaller towns, once our road show team leaves, we leave a gap and thus people have to travel to bigger towns to get their DTT decoders,” he said.

He called on individuals and business entities to partner with the NBC to become distributors of the DTT decoders in their towns.

The Minister of Information and Communication Technology Joeumll Kaapanda recently expressed his satisfaction with Namibia’s progress to switch from analogue to digital television when compared to most other African countries.

He was optimistic that the country would meet the global International Telecommunications Union’s (ITU) deadline of June 2015.

The NBC finalised the digitalisation of its networks last October and has requested households to purchase the required decoders.

The decoders are available at N$199 and customers are required to present an identity document and a receipt of the 20132014 TV licence payment in order to purchase the new decoder.

Television set owners who live far from NBC transmitters might need antennae, preferably outdoor VHF ones, while for those living closer to the transmitters, an in-door antenna might be sufficient.

Source : New Era