Cable v/s Set Top: Who will rule?

" T arget: The four metropolitan cities. Objective: To remove cable transmission and to introduce digital transmission. Deadline: O...


"Target: The four metropolitan cities. Objective: To remove cable transmission and to introduce digital transmission. Deadline: October 31st, 2012. Switch to digital transmission or forget TV" All Indians who live in metropolitan cities- Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai- must have had heard this advertisement by the Ministry of Broadcasting, Govt. of India. The deadline of 31st October have passed away long ago and I, myself, have seen people, still using a cable connection. According to the government, using cable TV is illegal from November 1st, 2012. Those who have implemented Set-Top boxes in replacement of Cable Connection are now in doubt whether the government will change the decision and state that it is not mandatory to have one Set-top box to watch television.

Even if the government does not cancel the plan- I bet that atleast 40% citizens of a metropolitan city will not be having Set Top boxes in their homes. And, we can't be blaming them. After all, whose fault is it? Is it the fault of the concerned group of individuals, or the fault of the government?

The fault is entirely of the government, I think so. The plan to replace ordinary cable TV with Set Top boxes came out suddenly, and with it came a deadline. The deadline was set a maximum of about 2-3 months after the initial advertisements started to roll out to the general public. As a consequence, cable operators did not have sufficient time to deliver Set Top boxes to 44 million customers (i.e, the entire population of the four metro cities of India).

Most importantly, the demand was and still is sky-touching. To manufacture 44 million set top boxes (that is almost about 4.4 crore Set Top Boxes) in few months, it requires superhuman effort. Anyway, machines also, cannot produce such voluminous amounts of set-top boxes. At least 10-12 months time should be given.

However, I am not supporting the fact that one stays with a cable connection- Set Top boxes has more advantages. According to IBN and The Times of India, Cable Operators had been evading Entertainment Duty (ED). They are now having sleepless nights. Set Top boxes have made it impossible for Cable Operators to hide the actual number of customers. Also, using Set Top boxes will lead to better picture quality and ensure that the viewer gets a minimum of 100 Channels.

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