Another year passes by! The financial crisis at the fag end of the year brought the cheers down for the industry which for the whole year demonstrated a very upbeat and vibrant mood. Financial crisis have affected the industry causing reduction in advertising revenues and not the subscription revenues which are still going northward. Subscriptions have increased both, in DTH as well as Cable TV. Cable Industry is also feeling the heat due to reduced carriage fee paid by the broadcasters. All imported equipment has become costly. DTH operators are paying more for the STBs and increasing subsidies to the subscribers to meet the competition, piling up more losses. But a silver lining in the dark clouds is that demand is still increasing everyday. Getting one million subscribers a month is not a joke.
It was surprising to see two prominent entries in the GEC genre 'NDTV Imagine' and Viacom 18 's 'Colors' threatening the supremacy of well entrenched Star Plus and Zee going beyond the 'Saas Bahu' sagas. Both the channels have made their niche amongst the top few with their innovative content. This shows that the TV channel market will never be saturated; new faces can make their mark even in the crowd.
The year 2009 will be the Digital Year in the real sense. Increasing subscriber base of DTH operators has made the cable operators and the MSOs scramble for the digital cable TV headends. No one wants to wait for the egulations for CAS implementation anymore. Even the cost of digital headends has come down to less than half.
HITS is another technology that is likely to be added to the digital cable homes in the new year. We may see more players in the HITS arena as the regulations for enabling all channels to be provided to HITS operators get cleared.
IPTV may still be struggling as the last mile is a big hurdle. If cable operators also migrate to the IPTVzone, situation may improve fast. They will have to push the fiber closer to the home. This will also enable them to provide triple play services taking feeds from the telecom companies. WiMax may just make a beginning this year but still has a long way to go.
News channels have been under the scanner for their uncontrolled content, throughout the last year. Whether it was Arushi Murder, bomb blasts, cash for vote scam or the terrorist attacks in Mumbai, media had been criticised for its irresponsible behaviour and sensationalizing news for TRPs. Even the self regulatory code devised by the News Broadcasters Association did not prove adequate.
Our Annual Issue this time contains many new features and much more information. We hope our readers appreciate and enjoy it as always. We do need your comments and suggestions for further improvements.
Wishing you all a very happy and prosperous New Year!