Satellite set-top box operators called on the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) to act as a middleman to solve technical problems between Thaicom Plc and CAT Telecom, which has disrupted signals for many channels.
After the Thaicom 6 satellite was launched on Aug 1 via the temporary satellite AsiaSat, many TV channels began changing their signal transmissions from Thaicom 5 to Thaicom 6. Channel 7 and Channel 11 (two free TV channels) began the exodus last Saturday, while satellite TV channels on RS Sunbox and GMM Z set-top box systems followed on Sunday.
Viewers using the satellite TV systems provided by PSI Holdings, Infosat, and Dynasat cannot watch these channels.
Some 64% of 22 million households in Thailand watch TV via satellite systems, reported Nielsen Company.
An industry source said the problem is caused by signal interference.
CAT provides the 38-GHz satellite frequency for over-the-air programming (OTA) updates while Thaicom provides rental services of its satellite transponders to satellite TV operators.
The signal transmission from the Thaicom 6 satellite disrupts CAT's frequency for OTA updates. The two companies have not been able to settle this problem themselves.
Set-top box providers asked CAT yesterday to boost its signal transmissions for OTA updates, but CAT refused the request, as Thaicom said this would disrupt Thaicom 6's signal.
Niran Tangpiroontham, managing director of Infosat, said the NBTC should mediate. "It's unfair for us as we pay to both rent the transponder and for OTA frequency use," he said.
Set-top box providers ask satellite dish technicians to update programming.
About the author
- Writer: Saengwit Kewaleewongsatorn
Position: Business Reporter