Singapore Broadcasting Authority Starts Digital Television Trial

At the start of March 1998 the Singapore Broadcasting Authority (SBA) announced the start of a three month digital television broadcasting trial, the first of its kind in South East Asia.

It has given a licence to Advent Television Private Limited to test the European Terrestrial Digital Video Broadcasting system (DVB-T). Transmissions commenced on February 27th covering the main Singapore area. A News Data Systems (NDS) COFDM modulator and Continental Microwave digital television transmitter is being used to generate the 175 watt signal which is being transmitted on UHF channel 35. Currently a Standard Definition Television (SDTV) program is being trialed.

The US Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) and Japanese Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting (ISDB) systems will also be evaluated.

A committee chaired by the Television Corporation of Singapore (TCS) and made up of local broadcasters and equipment manufacturers, will help the SBA make the final decision on the digital television system to be used.

SBA says its committed to bringing digital television into Singapore and it'll eventually replace the present analog television as going digital promises better picture quality service and multi-channel TV programming.

In addition, it also has the capability to offer interactive multimedia applications like online databases and electronic shopping.

The Advent TV system trial will gradually expand to include Mobile operation, Single Frequency Network (SFN) digital repeaters and sometime in May or June the transmission of High Definition Television (HDTV) images.

Sources: TCS, Information Square Singapore & NDS Australia

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