India to add extra HDTV

India’s public broadcaster Doordarshan says it will expand its transmissions of high-definition TV to its four largest cities. Currently Doordarshan transmits for about 3 hours per evening and says it will now invest extra cash in establishing HD-equipped studios in Delhi and Mumbai, as well as boost OB productions out of Kolkata and Chennai.

Most HD output is limited to sport and movies. Doordarshan says this will be remedied by the additional production facilities. Transmissions will remain free to view, and says that set-top boxes for its HD channels are available in the market for as little as $46-$64 depending on functionality.

Doordarshan is reflecting local competition in HD from general entertainment channels such as Star and Zee TV, both of which are adding to HD output.

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