The Cable Television Act, 2011, will come into effect on June 30,2012. In the cities of Delhi,Mumbai,Chennai and Kolkatta all cable operators will have to compulsorily transmit digitally all their TV channels to their subscribers.
This will lead to the transmission of channels through digital technology, and the viewers can watch almost DVD like images with superior sound quality. The high sales of LCD,LED and plasma TV's has also created a demand for High Definition transmisssion which can only be done through digital mode.
Also in the present system there is under reporting of the exact number of subscibers by the cable operatorswhich leads to loss of revenue to both the broadcasters and the Government. It is estimated that there are more than 60,000 unlicensed local cable operators in the country. It is also estimated that of the nearly Rs 20,000 crores collected as subscription only 20% ie Rs 4,000 crores reaches the broadcasters.
With the digital transmission in these cities coming into force,it is expected that theexact number of subscribers will now get reported correctly because licensing regime will ensure correct disclosure of subscribers by the local cable operators.This will result in better distribution of revenues to both the broadcasters and government. It is expected that by 2017 upto 5% of India's GDP will be contributed by TV related services and could generate nearly Rs 6,50,000 crores in revenue.
Another reason for going digital is the limitation faced in the present analog system which does not provide adequate bandwidth to carry large number of
In 2011 there were 141 million households having TV, up from 138 and 123 million in 2010 and 2009 resp. The number of licensed channels has risen from 318 in 2006, to 461 in 2009 and to 550 in 2010.Present estimates place the numberof channels to be around 700 . The advertising revenue generated by TV was Rs 2,196 crores in 2006 and in 2011 it is estimated tohave risen to around Rs 11,800 crores.
As against 100% TV penetration in countries like Australia, Malayasia ,indonesia, Hong Kong, Singapore ,N Zealand , 78% in Japan,48% in China,in India it is only around 26% .However with 117 million TV households subscribing to Pay TV India is only behind China which has 184 million Pay TV customers.
The tremendous potential that exists in both furthur TV penatration and Pay TV services in the country will receive a big boost by the introduction of digital transmission initially in the four metro cities and then later on in other cities. The revenue generation can also be very high to the tune of Rs 6,50,000 crores and the TV industry can create upto upto three million new jobs by 2017.