CSA, the French TV and radio regulator, has proposed the immediate adoption of the DVB-T2 broadcasting standard and MPEG-4 compression standard for all new DTT channels.
If adopted by the government, the recommendation would require most consumers to change their STBs and TV sets for equipment that is not expected to be available to the general public for 12 or 18 months.
DVB-T2 will allow broadcasters to air four HD channels over a single multiplex, compared to the current three channels. Once the government decides on the standard, CSA will be able to launch a tender for the new DTT channels, he said, without giving a timeframe.
NextRadioTV CEO Alain Weill called this a “poisoned gift”, as people will not be able to watch the new channels with their existing equipment for several years.
The CSA highlighted that around 45 per cent of homes will be able to watch the new channels from the start without changing their equipment if they are cable or satellite subscribers.