• TV5, ABS-CBN to spend P1.2B more for upgrade

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    ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp. and TV5 will be spending an additional P1.2 billion combined to upgrade their broadcast systems to Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcast (DTTB) from analog in compliance with the requirements of the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC).

    According to TV5, the company will spend about P700 million in the next five years in upgrading and rolling out its DTTB service, with P300 million to be spent this year for DDTB rollout in the National Capital Region and other key cities in the country.

    “We already have, in fact we’re transmitting on Channel 41 already. It’s just a matter of making the footprint bigger,” TV5 president and chief executive officer Noel Lorenzana told reporters.

    Asked how much TV5 plans to spend for the shift to digital TV broadcast, Lorenzana said: “In the next five years, it’s about P700 million, we can frontload it because I want now the footprint to become bigger. Not only bigger but I want the transmission to be good indoors,” he added.

    “I could spend about P300 million this year,” Lorenzana said.

    Lorenzana added that they are basically working on two things for the shift to digital, “extend the footprint and make sure the indoor transmission is good, that’s my priority. Then of course one is coming up with content, what you could feed to the digital channels.”

    Meanwhile, ABS-CBN is also spending an additional P500 million for the company’s plan to roll out DTTB service to other parts of the country.

    In a separate briefing, ABS-CBN Group chief finance officer Rolando Valdueza said the network is allocating an additional P500 million capital expenditure for the roll-out of DTTB in Cebu, Davao, Cagayan, Bacolod, and Iloilo.

    “We will see how the market will respond. If very encouraging, maybe we can look at the other major cities and provinces,” Valdueza said.

    In 2014, the NTC issued the implementing rules of an order requiring all broadcast companies in the country to adopt the Japanese standard Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting-Terrestrial (ISDB-T) technology, the most advanced international standard on DTTB, for the rollout of their digital TV service.

    The commission’s initiative seeks to implement the transition from analog to digital TV at the “earliest practicable time.”

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