Consumers and broadcasters will pay for DSO
April 23, 2014
From David Del Valle in Madrid
Three years after the latest shift in the frequencies, Spaniards will again have to foot the bill of the new DTT migration following the digital dividend to be completed by January 2015.
The Administration estimates that the total cost of retuning will amount to €200 million with over 8 million households paying between €20 and €23 each to readjust their SMATV antennas. UTECA, the private TV Association, indicates that the cost per home could easily reach €200 – affecting two thirds of Spain’s 17 million homes.
Even worse, with the closure of 9 DTT channels, Spaniards will only have a DTT offer of 15 TV channels, which may be reduced to 7 if the Supreme Court finally rules that another 8 DTT channels should be closed as their licences were awarded unlawfully.
Although it is taken for granted, the Administration has not revealed yet whether it will call a new public tender to award DTT licences arguing that the decision will be up to the spectrum left after the allocation of the 4G licences to telco operators in the 800 MHz band.
The DTT migration will also affect broadcasters which will have to pay for the cost of simulcasting, around €5 million per channel, during the migration of their TV signals.