Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is looking at a new proposal which would require all DTH broadcasters to use one ISRO-built satellite. If carried out, the move would eliminate non-Indian satellite operators from beaming their signals into India.
ISRO licenses all DTH channels, irrespective of whether they use ISRO satellites of those from foreign providers such as Luxembourg-based SES, Hong Kong’s AsiaSat or Malaysia’s MEASAT. The current rules allow ‘foreign’ satellite operators to be used when broadcasters cannot source capacity on ISRO’s own satellites. However, these foreign satellite operators supply their capacity to ISRO which then leases the bandwidth to DTH broadcasters.
India’s Economic Times is reporting that ISRO has circulated a discussion paper suggesting that DTH broadcasters use a single ISRO-owned satellite. This suggestion, if implemented, would require tens of millions of homes to re-align their dishes.
A source told the Economic Times that the potential “saving” could be tangible given that the six major Indian DTH players would then not have to massively duplicate their uplinking and downlinking of signals for the same channels.