Digital TV equipment maker DVN is planning to more than triple its set-top box sales in mainland China this year as the pace of migration from analogue to digital steps up. The Motorola-backed company forecasts 500,000 set-top box sales in 2004 compared to 150,000 last year.
As the mainland government ramps up subsidies to broadcasters buying in boxes for distribution to their pay-TV customers, the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) has directed banks and financial institutions to provide loans to digital cable operators to buy in set-top boxes from manufacturers such as DVN for low-coast rental to customers.
The programme is already up and running in Qingdao, Foshan and Hangzhou. DVN, which claims tp supply half the mainland's set-top box market, charges 600-700 yuan - around £40 - per box. In Qingdao, domestic subscribers pay 10 yuan a month for the set-top box, plus 12 yuan for digital broadcast services. Some 40,000 Qingdao cable homes have already gone digital.
DVN chief executive Terry Lui said: "The government has made very aggressive plans for the migration to digital TV broadcasting. It wants to extend the subsidy programme to 50 cities from the three now. In Qingdao, for example, we are targeting 150,000 subscribers over the next six months".
Lovelacemedia | 20.07.2004