NTC endorses adoption of Japanese digital TV standard

Posted at 01/14/13 6:58 PM

MANILA, Philippines - The National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) is backing the adoption of the Japanese digital TV standard to replace the analog system in the Philippines by 2015.

Commissioner Gamaliel Cordoba said the NTC endorsed the adoption of Japan's Integrated Service Digital Broadcasting-Terrestrial or ISDB-T standard to the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) last December.

Cordoba said the DOST, which is in charge of big projects involving technology, will make the recommendation to Malacanang.

The Philippine government is targeting to replace its analog system with digital broadcast technology by 2015. It has studied Japan's Integrated Service Digital Broadcasting - Terrestrial, and Europe's Digital Video Broadcasting - Terrestrial 2.

Cordoba said the NTC chose the Japanese standard because it is cheaper than the European standard.

The NTC official said another advantage of the Japanese standard is that it can also be used as a early warning mechanism during natural disasters.

Earlier, Kyodo News quoted Japanese Ambassador to the Philippines Toshinao Urabe as saying the Japanese system is suited for the Philippines, since it is an island country and disaster-prone like Japan and its one-antenna system can even apply to mobile phones.

"What happened at the great eastern Japan earthquake, when people were hit by the earthquake, they were travelling on those trains. And someone got a message (on a mobile phone) that tsunami is coming. So, everyone said, 'Let's get off the train, and they went to a higher place. After that, the tsunami came and the train was destroyed," Urabe said.

The Information and Communications Technology Office had also said the Japanese system is better suited for the Philipipnes, since the European model has more complicated modulation techniques.

The Kapisanan ng mga Brokaster ng Pilipinas (KBP) and an NTC technical working group had also recommended the adoption of the Japanese system last year.