Rebecca Hawkes ©RapidTVNews | 27-09-2011

South Africa's state broadcaster is to introduce 18 digital channels within two years of the country's proposed migration from analogue to digital TV transmission - a journey which begins next year.

The plans put before parliament by South Africa Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) comprise 17 television channels - including digital versions of its existing SABC 1, 2 and 3 - and an interactive video service.

"By providing these television channels, radio stations and interactive services, the SABC will be making full use of the capacity allocated to the SABC in Multiplex 1 under the terms of ICASA's (Independent Communication Authority of South Africa) regulations from February 2010," Kaizer Kganyago, SABC spokesman, is quoted as saying by local publication My Broadband.

The switch over date for digital terrestrial TV (DTT) in South Africa has been set at December 2013, with simulcast digital and analogue broadcasts beginning in April 2012.

Like the rest of the Southern African Development Community, South Africa has adopted DVB-T2 with MPEG-4 compression as its DTT standard