Ukraine: DTT problems and solutions

February 26, 2014 10.57 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul

ZeonbudUkraine needs to implement a number of far-reaching measures to get its troubled transition to digital broadcasting back on track.

Quoted by Mediasat, Ivan Omelyanuk, an expert on digital TV and member of DigiTAG, said that there had been several shortcomings in the transition process.

The main ones were lack of transparency in choosing the operator of four multiplexes (Zeonbud); unfair competition in the choice of TV channels to be carried on the multiplexes; encryption of channels that should have been offered FTA, leading to an increase in the cost of receivers; opting for multi (MFN) and rather than single (SFN) frequency networks; failure to exploit the benefits of DVB-T2; and insufficient coverage achieved by DTT signals.

To remedy this, Omelyanuk proposed the immediate prohibition of encoding DTT signals, which would result in the cost of receivers halving; use of SFNs; introduction of 7-8, mostly national, TV channels on the first multiplex; cancelling Zeonbud’s licence and holding another tender for the four multiplexes it currently operates; use of digital frequencies by local TV stations; the establishment of a commission to oversee the transition to digital broadcasting, with gradual ASO to start immediately.