Cable television service provider Siti Cable Network Limited has inked a Digital Addressable System (DAS) Interconnect agreement with 55% of its local cable operators (LCOs), in a bid to implement digitization across the top metros across India. The company claims to be the only multi-system operator (MSO) to have inked such agreements.
Siti Cable stated that this partnership works on a revenue-sharing basis of the carriage fee and it will allow cable operators to provide encrypted TV channel signals to the subscriber. However, it didn’t disclose any specific revenue share ratio or any other financial details of the agreement.
The company also claimed that it is actively working with local cable operators to migrate them to the digital regime smoothly and has provided them with a ‘Own Your Customer’ management system, which allows cable operators to manage various subscriber-related transactions on their own. These transactions include activation, deactivation, up gradation, down gradation, billing, payment, account statements, packaging and complaints among others. Siti Cable said that cable operators can access this system on their computers, tablets and their mobile phones.
Similar Developments: In March 2012, Dish TV had partnered with around 30 local cable operators to run a pilot project in Delhi, wherein the local cable operators acted as the company’s agents to distribute and install DTH connections, and Dish TV paid them commissions based on the number of new connections installed, in addition to a 15%-20% commission whenever a customer recharges his subscription.
Digitization Status in Metros: Last month, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has stated that 68% Cable TV digitization has been achieved in four metro cities, including Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai, where digitization of cable TV was made mandatory by October 31, 2012. This announcement was made by the ministry after a review of the digitization progress in these four metros.
The ministry stated that Mumbai had achieved the highest level of digitization among the four metros with 95% digitization level, followed by Kolkata with 67% digitization level, Delhi with 53% digitization level and Chennai with 49% digitization level. However, it noted that these numbers didn’t take DTH subscribers into account and if they were considered, the ministry noted that Mumbai’s digitization level marginally increased to 96%, while Chennai’s digitization level increased to 77% and the digitization level of Kolkata and Delhi increased to 72% and 65% respectively.
No Deadline Extension: Ministry’s senior officials had also added that there will be no further deadline extension for digitization of cable TV, and claimed that the task will be completed within the allotted time frame, with active support from all stake holders.
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