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HITS to allow viewers watch TV programmes according to their convenience
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There is good news for TV viewers. If everything goes as planned, they will not only have cheaper cable charges, but also the choice to view programmes according to their own convenience, irrespective of the time it is aired.

The credit for this goes to the Central government’s decision to take the ‘Headed in the Sky’ (HITS) digital platform beyond the Direct to Home (DTH) services.

The move will result in cheaper transmissions by cable operators, according to A Bhaskaranarayana, Satellite Secretary at ISRO Bangalore.

He was delivering a keynote address at the seminar on “A vision to GenNext Broadcasting” held under the aegis of Broadcast Engineering Society (India) on Saturday.

The Vikram Sarabhai Chair professor said this will mean greater and cheaper penetration in rural areas through cable networks.

Hits is a step ahead of other digital formats as it “is an interactive system where the viewer can use the same set-top box to watch programmes of his choice at a time convenient to him”. With HITS, one can also have running searches, pay per view and block programmes by title, channel or rating, he added.

A hits operator will transmit channels to the cable operators using a satellite. The cable operators will then deliver the digital signal to the subscriber’s home through the set-top box.

Bhaskaranarayana added: “Of the 125 million homes with TVs, there are 75 million with cable connection, while 15 million use DTH service. About 90 per cent of the TV viewers are on the analog system, but now the government is serious about complete digitisation of television broadcast in the country. It is estimated that Doordarshan will go fully digital by 2017.”

Senior BSNL officials underlined the growth of broadband internet facilities.

Sunil Kakkad, CMD of Sai Info Systems said that a 10 per cent increase in broadband penetration in India could contribute about 1.2 per cent to the GDP. He attributed the low broadband penetration to English domination of the websites while only four per cent of people in the world speak English.

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