Digital switch over begins
The National Communications Commission (NCC) began its nationwide digital television switchover operation with the shutting down of analogue wireless and television signals in the Dajia district of Taichung City, central Taiwan, last week. With the switch Dajia became the first district in the country to completely switch to digital TV.
According to the NCC, Taiwan’s top television regulator, Taiwan will turn off analogue wireless and television signals countrywide by the 30th June 2012, ushering in a new era of digital wireless TV.
Sources: Advanced Television and Telecompaper
Item added: 1st August 2011
Gap fillers speed switchover
The National Communications Commission (NCC) began installing gap fillers for DTT signals last year and will roll out fifty of these gap fillers nationwide, the Taipei Times reports. Once the gap filler project is completed, digital signal coverage for the country's 369 townships will hit 98 %.
The NCC has also distributed 1,000 free set-top boxes to low-income households and plans to distribute some 84,000 more set-top boxes this year.
Recently it was announced that Taiwan plans to switch off analogue TV signals completely on the 30 June 2012, six months ahead of schedule.
Item added: 27th June 2011
ASO brought forward
Rapid TV News reports that the Analogue Switch Off (ASO) date previously set for Taiwan has been brought forward 6 months to July 2012.
The process is now expected to be completed in time for the Summer Olympic Games.
In addition, the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) plans to issue seven DTT licences next year, two of which will be for mobile television services.
The government has also set a new target to boost digital cable TV penetration to 50% by 2015.
Source: Rapid TV News
Item added: 9th June 2011
ASO to be completed by 2013
The switch over from analogue to digital TV services in Taiwan is to be completed by 2013 according to recent reports. The government is to invest NT$740 million (€18.7 million) for DTT receivers and transmitters to help ease the transition.
NT$260 million of this will subsidise DTT receivers for 103,000 low income households.
In addition, the government will provide funding to increase the coverage of DTT services which should reach 95% of the population by 2012.
The DTT platform uses the DVB-T standard in 6MHz channels and was initially launched in 2004. It already offers HD services using the MPEG-4, H.264, Audio Visual Codec.
Item added: 20th December 2010
NCC drafts DTT transition proposals
The National Communications Commission is scheduled to submit two proposals to the Cabinet by April to help facilitate the switch from analogue to digital terrestrial TV services reports the Taipei Times.
One of the proposals is that the government would subsidise all viewing households to buy set-top boxes, while the other proposes that the government only provide a subsidy to low-income families.
Should the Cabinet opt for the first proposal, each household would receive a subsidy to buy one set-top box. If it chooses the second option, the government will subsidise the purchase, of the set-top boxes, cables and antennas.
Five TV networks offer digital broadcasting in Taiwan, Taiwan Television, China Television, Chinese Television Service, Formosa Television and the Public Television Service.
The commission also hopes that the government will consider providing high-definition TV services if it chooses the first proposal. The massive demand for set-top boxes will help lower the costs and make them more affordable.
The government hopes to phase out analogue signals by 2012.
Source: Taipei Times
Item added: 1st March 2010
Mobile TV channels announced
Taiwan's National Communications Commission (NCC), which plans to issue Taiwan's first two mobile TV licences by the end of 2010, has announced that one will operate on Channel 35 (596-602MHz) and the other on Channel 36 (602-608MHz).
Licensees will be allowed to use either DVB-H or MediaFLO.
Item added: 18th January 2010
Two mobile licences to be released
According to advanced-television.com, Taiwan's Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) has completed a draft proposal for the release of two national mobile TV operating licences for Taiwan in 2010. Trial licences for both DVB-H and MediaFLO mobile TV services have been issued in the past and the draft proposal would allow the use of either DVB-H or MediaFLO.
The government is adopting a neutral stance on the technology to be used.
Taiwan-based carrier Taiwan Mobile (TWM) and the Want Want Group, which publishes the Chinese-language China Times and Commercial Times newspapers, have reportedly expressed interest in bidding for the licences.
Items added: 26th October 2009
6MHz HDTV DVB-T service launched
A terrestrial HDTV service is now on air, in both Taipei and Kaohsiung, the major cities of Taiwan.
The trial service, named HiHD, represents the latest deployment of HDTV using DVB-T, and follows in the footsteps of services in Australia, Singapore, Norway, NewZealand and several other countries.
Taiwan is the first country to use 6 MHz channels to launch its HD, DVB-T service which is available on channel 30 (566-572MHz) from broadcaster PTS.
In common with Singapore and Norway, the service in Taiwan uses MPEG-4/H.264 video compression.
Following discussions involving representatives of industry and government, it was also decided to adopt 1920x1080/60i picture format.
Consumers will be able to purchase backwards compatible receivers, that can also receive a range of MPEG-2 standard definition services, at a retail price of about $233 USD.
The new service will carry drama, documentary, music & infotainment, arts, and sports events, including the Beijing Olympics. A new four hour schedule is broadcast from 20h00 to midnight each day, with the same programming repeated throughout the rest of the day.
A government committee will evaluate the trial, which begins in the metropolitan areas of the North and South of the island, by analysing viewer satisfaction levels and indoor reception capability. The committee will then decide how best to implement the second phase, bringing transmissions to the West Coast, and then the third phase, bringing transmissions to the East Coast.
Source: Taiwan Public Television Service
Item added: 20th May 2008
Mobile trial, TV broadcasters seek joint front
Four of the five trial mobile TV broadcast licensees in Taiwan have suggested to the National Communications Commission (NCC) that they be allowed to work together or establish a joint venture to operate mobile TV services on an integrated radio frequency band of 12MHz, according to industry sources. All four are using DVB-H technology.
The NCC issued five mobile TV broadcasting licences on a trial basis in November 2006 and each was assigned a 6MHz band covering either northern Taiwan or southern Taiwan. Four of the broadcast licensees are using DVB-H. They are China Television (CTV), Public Television Service (PTS), Chinese Television System (CTS) and Chung-Hwa Wideband Best Network (Tw-Airnet).
Taiwan Television Enterprise (TTV) has adopted the Qualcomm-developed MediaFLO standard.
The four DVB-H licensees would like to set up a joint venture using a combined 12 MHz segment so that they can reduce their market risk and maximise the return on investment.
Item added: 15th April 2008
PTS successfully trials DVB-H services
The public service broadcaster PTS has completed its yearlong DVB-H trial with its partners mobile operators Chunghua Telecom, Taiwan Mobile and Fareastone, manufacturers Motorola and BenQ and software vendor Cyberlink.
The trial began in January 2007 and tested both technical and commercial aspects of mobile television.
During the commercial trial, 340 users could access such content as CNBC, ESPN, PTS, local news service TVBS-N and the mobile service Phone TV.
Users said they were willing to pay US$3.5 to $9 per month to access 20 television services. Over 50% of users would be willing to purchase DVB-H receivers in the next 6 to 12 months.
As a next step, the communications authority will need to issue invitations to tender for mobile TV licences.
According to the Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union licences are expected to be issued in the second half of 2008 with services starting soon after.
Main source: Digitag, attributed to PTS
Item added: 29th January 2008
DVB-T focus on Taiwan
Taiwan selected DVB-T as the standard for digital TV broadcasting in July 2001. Soon after in June 2002, DVB-T broadcasting began in the western area of Taiwan and extended to the whole island in April 2003.
Single Frequency Networks SFN’s also became part of the broadcasting network in September 2003.
By 2004, 15 TV programs were being broadcast from 5 TV stations around the Island.
At present, to cover the whole Island, transmitters of various powers are used. In total there are four of 5kW’s output, 6 of 3.4kW’s, 2 of 400Watts and 7 of 100Watts.
Analogue switch of begins in the remote islands during 2008 and then in the eastern area of Taiwan in December 2009, with the completion of analogue switchover during December 2010.
In October 2007 it was estimated that there were 1,684 thousand receivers in homes, 293 thousand in cars and 255 thousand as attachments or as an integral part of a Personal Computer.
Source: Local correspondent
Item added: 30th October 2007
PTS trials DVB-H mobile services
Public service broadcaster PTS (Public service Television) has begun a DVB-H trial in the northern region of Taiwan, which will run until the end of the year.
Taiwan’s top three telecom operators, Chunghwa Telecom, Taiwan Mobile and Far EasTone Telecommunications are all partners in the trial.
Motorola and Qisda (formerly BenQ) are also participating by making 200 DVB-H receivers available for the trial.
Item added: 14th September 2007
New DVB-H trial launched in Taiwan
DVB-H technical trials have been launched in Taichung City prior to the start of full market trials.
ChungHwa Wideband Best Network, Innoxius Technologies and Gigabyte are all participating in the tests which will trial both Free-to-air and PayTV services. The trial is planned to run from February to December 2007.
Source: DVB-H.org website
Item added: 6th February 2007
Mobile trials granted in Taiwan
Licenses for 5 mobile TV trials have been granted by The National Communications Commission (NCC) since October 2006. Four of the consortiums have adopted DVB-H technology for the trail whilst the fifth will use MediaFLO.
Further details can be found on the DVB-H website by clicking on the following link Taiwan DVB-H
Source: PTS Foundation
Item added: 30th January 2007
HDTV trials to start on the DTT platform
Taiwan’s National Communications Commission (NCC) has approved a plan to trial HDTV on the DVB-T based digital terrestrial platform. The Public Television Service (PTS) and local Broadcasters will use UHF channel 30, a channel specifically allocated for previous engineering tests and trial broadcasts.
NCC will ask other Broadcasters to join the trial, which has been allocated funding by the Government.
Item added: 31st October 2006
PTS receives digital boost
Taiwan's legislature has granted the local Public Television Service US$137.38 million for the construction of terrestrial digital broadcasting platform.
The budget is to support projects on high-definition TV (HDTV), Single Frequency Network (SFN), DVB-H mobile TV and digital production and origination equipment.
$85.94 million is for the construction of an HDTV transmission network, studios and post-production suites, allowing Taiwan to commence its HDTV service at the end of 2007, just in time for the Beijing Olympic Games. The new HDTV services plan to use H.264 MPEG-4 coding.
US$30.89 million was also allocated for the common transmission platform for the second Single Frequency Network (SFN).
Currently there are 1 million DVB-T receivers being used in Taiwan, comprising home STB’s, in car STB’s and PC or Notebook PC DVB-T receivers. It is estimated that home STB and in car reception accounts for 60% of units.
Five multiplexes are on air delivering 15-17 channels, some with MHP services.
It is expected that HDTV and second SFN infrastructure will be constructed at the same time, to reduce costs.
TBS will also produce mobile content and conduct DVB-H trials with both mobile network operators and handset manufacturers to test interoperability issues and interactive services.
TBS, the Taiwan Broadcasting System, is a newly formed media group bringing together the public service broadcaster PTS and CTS.
Main Source: Advanced-Television.com. Additional information from DVB correspondents.
Item added: 11th July 2006
Analogue TV frequencies to be recalled in 2010
The government of Taiwan will recall its analogue TV frequencies in 2010 according to a cna.com.tw article. This will make way for full implementation of Digital TV, officials of the Council for Economic Planning and Development (CEPD) said recently.
14 DTV channels have been broadcasting since July 2004.
In addition the government is to produce a timetable for the full digitisation of TV in its "digital Taiwan project" which is a part of its " Challenge 2008" national development plan.
Item added: 25th January 2006
Taiwan has not yet made a firm decision on an analogue switch off date but continues to go forward with Digital TV.
We have recently been informed that from January 1st 2006 it is mandatory for all Digital TV receivers with 29 inch or larger screens to be certified to BSMI standards. The certification tests include conformance close to those used in the D-Book, EN55013/20 EMC standards and electrical safety.
These tests will also become mandatory from January 1st, 2007 for sets with screens of 21 inches or larger and extended to all DTV sets by January 1st, 2008. At present certification of Set Top Boxes is voluntary.
Item added: 12th December 2005
Taiwan goes forward with MHP
SysMedia, has announced that its Plasma Magenta interactive TV content management and production system has been selected by Taiwan Television Enterprises (TTV) as a core part of its interactive DVB-MHP solution.
Taiwan terrestrial broadcasters started broadcasting digital programmes in July 2004 using the DVB-T transmission system. DVB-MHP was also adopted for its for its interactive services.
To accelerate its push for DVB-MHP, the Taiwan government provided financial help to establish the necessary systems, including to TTV which is the oldest terrestrial broadcaster in Taiwan. The next part of TTV's plan is to launch a trial of its enhanced and interactive digital television applications based on the DVB-MHP standard.
Source: IABM announcement 8th April 2005
Nokia joins Taiwanese companies to test TV on mobile phones
Nokia, in conjunction with media firms and telecom operators in Taiwan, is to promote a digital TV and radio service for mobile users and handheld devices. Partners in the alliance include Chunghwa Telecom Co. Ltd., Taiwan's largest phone company, compact disc maker CMC Magnetics Corp., which is diversifying into the digital content, and some local TV and radio stations.
The development is the first such initiative in Asia, where a pilot service in Taiwan will begin in mid-2005 after a successful recent test was done in Helsinki using Nokia phones equipped with a special antenna. "The handset penetration rate in Taiwan is over 100 per cent and the island just started broadcasting digital TV last year, so it’s a good time to develop mobile TV," said Nokia.
From Shveta Malik in New Delhi
Mobile DVB-T on the Buses in Taiwan
On January the 19th, 2005 a new channel tailor-made for mobile reception was launched on bus services in Kaohsiung City, Taiwan.
Kaohsiung joins other cities around the world who have also started mobile TV services such as Singapore, in 2001 and Shanghai's Oriental Pearl Mobile TV in 2002.
Dimo TV, standing for "Digital Mobile Television" and broadcasts to 165 buses and 6 harbour ships. Dimo claims to be the pioneer of TV public service broadcasting to commuters with a service designed as a non-commercial and advertising-free channel to inform, educate and entertain passengers on public vehicles.
To cover the whole metropolitan area of Kaohsiung, PTS has used a 5kW main transmitter and a smaller filler site on the 85th floor of its Grand Formosa Koahsiung building.