Digital Migration

Migrating from Analog to Digital Terrestrial TV Broadcasting platform

A National Task Force on Digital Migration was set-up by the Zambian government to make recommendations and generally oversee the national digital migration process. The Task Force is spear-headed by The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting Services, Communications Authority and Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation.

Zambia, like all other African countries and other parts of the world, will be changing the Terrestrial TV Broadcasting platform from Analog to Digital. This will be in conformity with the provisions of the Geneva 2006 (GE06) Digital TV Broadcasting plan. The plan is a transformation of the old Analogue TV Plan (174-230MHz and 470-862MHz) and encompasses Europe, Arab States and Africa.

The change is mainly meant to address the rising demand for terrestrial TV Broadcasting. With digital transmission, up to eight TV programmes can be transmitted on a spectrum or frequency space of a single analogue programme. This therefore means a capacity increase of eight fold. As a result of increased capacity, some spectrum will be freed-up for use by the broadband wireless access services. Other than capacity increase, digital transmission delivers superior quality with value added services such as tele-text, online programming guides as well as e-Governance and e-Commerce. The change will have to take place on or before Wednesday, 17thJune 2015. All Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) member states would have switched over to Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) by 31st December 2013. As a country, Zambia has set 31st December 2014 as a date by which all Analogue Terrestrial Television should have been switched off.

In order to smoothly and effectively effect the change, broadcasters will have to change the mode of transmission from Analogue to Digital, while the TV receivers will have to be digital ready TV sets or the current analogue sets but with digital set top boxes (the latter convert digital signals to analogue – so the analogue TV set can display them).

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