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DD-India plans to offer more channels

Doordarshan’s free direct-to-home (DTH) service Freedish plans to roll out its MPEG-4 set-top boxes (STBs) from April 2016, a move that will allow the platform to offer more channels.

Freedish is also planning to reserve certain slots for non-Hindi regional channels. The move will allow it to expand to non-Hindi markets. “Encrypted MPEG-4 STBs will begin rolling out in April 2016. It’s happening now and will take some more time to happen,” Doordarshan DDG (Comm. & Sales/ IR & IMD/ DCD) CK Jain said.

Unlike the MPEG-2 STBs, the MPEG-4 STBs can be procured only from authorised dealers. “MPEG-4 STBs can be bought from the market, but they will be provided by the authorised distributors. Even though the STBs are encrypted, subscribers will not have to pay any fee,” Jain added.

Freedish will be able to provide almost 112 channels through MPEG-4 STBs. Currently, it provides 64 channels through MPEG-2 STBs. DD free dishMPEG-4 is a compression technology that allows DTH operators to transmit double the number of channels compared to MPEG-2 technology with the same satellite transponder.