Announcement soon on switch from analogue to digital broadcasting - Gobind

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KUALA LUMPUR (March 5): An announcement is to be made in the second quarter of 2019 on the transition from analogue to digital broadcasting, Communications and Multimedia Minister Gobind Singh Deo said today.

He said the government had held discussions with the stakeholders in the country and other countries in the region which had implemented digital broadcasting.

“The Malaysian government is in the process of migrating from analogue to digital (broadcasting). I hope we can make an announcement in April or by the end of the year that we will switch to the digital era.

“The transition will upgrade the quality of the broadcasting service provided to the people and we can establish the OTT (Over-the-Top) system, meaning consumers can watch their favourite programmes at any time, not having to wait for the broadcast times,” he told reporters after opening the Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) Digital Broadcasting Symposium 2019 here.

Gobind said that based on the discussions held so far, the upgrading from an analogue to a digital system would be done in phases and that several final decisions would be made soon.

"There is a possibility it will have to be done in phases. I feel that we should do it without any delay. Efforts must be made to ensure that we launch (the digital broadcasting) and I hope we can decide on moving forward," he said.

Earlier, in his speech, Gobind said broadcast and media organisations need to quickly implement digital solutions and transform themselves to stay relevant and compete with the likes of the tech-savvy giants such as Netflix and Amazon.

"If we do not develop our own digital solutions and engage with our audiences, someone else is going to take our place. That is why fellow broadcasters from the region need to make use of such events and forums to learn from the experts and work together to achieve these goals and not be left behind.

"The ABU has always been supportive of such endeavours from its members and the industry, and I believe they will continue to support them in future," he added.

The four-day symposium, which started yesterday, is taking place at a hotel here with 48 exhibitors, including Radio Televisyen Malaysia (RTM) and Media Prima Berhad.

It comprises of an international conference, focused workshops and an industry exhibition showcasing the latest technologies and services from around the world. - Bernama