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Global deadline for digital migration elapses

18 June 2015, 09:19 Angeline Kado

Nairobi- The global deadline for analogue switch off was scheduled to take place on the June 17, 2015 at exactly 23:59 following the International Communication Union (ITU) Geneva 2006 Agreement.

Speaking during a stakeholder consultation forum on broadcasting regulations Wednesday, the Ministry of Information, Communications and Technology Cabinet Secretary, Dr. Fred Matiang'i expressed optimism over the immense benefits that could be harnessed from digital broadcasting which is currently enjoyed by more than 2.5 million households in the country.

Regarding the lack of regulation in the digital industry, Matiang'i reiterated his previous sentiments that the interest of the public and the need to create a pluralistic and diverse landscape should guide the policy makers, regulators and service providers.

The deployment of an LTE/4G high speed mobile broadband network, which uses some of the spectrum freed up as a result of the migration, is among the achievements the migration.

Read Also: Safaricom to drive Internet usage with 4G, TV decoders

This increase in broadband penetration, is expected to greatly contribute to the socio-economic development in the country.

The media and entertainment industry, which has been recognized as the second biggest source of employment after agriculture, is also set to greatly benefit from the migration.

Consequently, the Cabinet Secretary called upon all the stakeholders to come up with ways of harnessing the local talent, creativity and the attendant economic opportunities.

Despite the successful transition currently being experienced in the country, digital migration came with its fair share of challenges, from financial constraints, lack of political will and industry resistance.

According to the Communications Authority of Kenya (CA), only 2.2 million households had acquired the set-top boxes out of the 3.5 million households that own television sets.

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