StarHub TV to go into full digital modeTuesday, February 17th, 2009
Analogue transmission will cease from 30 June 2009
SINGAPORE — From 30 June 2009, all StarHub TV customers will enjoy digital-quality reception of TV programmes and a suite of interactive services on TV as StarHub goes into full digital mode with the cessation of all analogue transmissions.
Households currently receiving analogue Free-To-Air TV channels will not be affected by this migration. This means households – both StarHub TV subscribers and non-subscribers – will continue to receive programmes on Free-To-Air channels.
StarHub’s digital platform was launched in May 2004 and by end 2008, 96% of its pay TV customers are already on the digital platform. Digital TV has provided StarHub TV customers with more choices, flexibility and interactivity, as well as improved visual and audio quality.
It is a worldwide trend that operators, suppliers and vendors around the world are phasing out their analogue services. Similarly, the Analogue set-top boxes deployed by StarHub, introduced in 1995, have been phased out by third-party suppliers and the supporting systems necessary for the analogue service are no longer offered by manufacturers.
“Now that the analogue service is no longer supported by suppliers and manufacturers, we have decided to cease our analogue transmission so that the service quality rendered to our customers will not be compromised,” explained Ms Ong Bee Lian, StarHub’s Head of Pay TV & Entertainment.
The introduction of the digital platform in May 2004 allowed StarHub to offer a wider selection of channels. Due to the limited capacity on the analogue platform, StarHub was only able to offer 50 channels prior to May 2004. Today, StarHub carries more than 130 channels.
StarHub TV customers who upgrade from the Analogue set-top box to a digital box can enjoy access to selected Basic Group and Sports Group channels that were launched only on the digital platform in recent years. For example, existing Education Basic Group customers who upgrade to digital will be able to access The History Channel at no extra cost. Existing Sports Group customers will stand to gain as well. They will be able to enjoy six additional channels – Eurosport, Eurosportnews, Goal TV 1, Goal TV 2, Golf Channel and SuperSports Plus when they upgrade to digital. In addition, all digital customers can enjoy complimentary access to five international channels – Arirang TV, Australia Network, Deutsche Welle, KBS World and TVRI.
“StarHub is committed to providing the best value for their customers, as well as to provide high quality service at affordable prices. The digital platform is able to provide a significantly better service with more channels and innovative services for our customers. On top of the additional channels, digital customers can also enjoy features such as On-Screen Programme Guide, Video Mosaic, Programme Alerts, free TV games and access useful information such as stock listings, cinema schedules and lottery results via Interactive TV (Channel 800),” added Ms Ong.
To give customers choice, StarHub currently offers four set-top boxes to access its digital TV services. Customers can choose between Digital set-top box, HD set-top box, HubStation and HubStation HD. HubStation and HubStation HD come with an in-built hard-disk and two-way interactivity that enable customer to watch and record programmes, as well as access Demand TV. The rental fee for each box starts from $4 ($4.28 with GST) monthly.
To ease the transition from analogue to digital, customers will enjoy a $2 ($2.14 with GST) waiver off their monthly Digital set-top box rental fee for a period of six months for each Analogue set-top box that is upgraded to a Digital set-top box.
StarHub TV customers can upgrade to Digital set-top box, HD set-top box, HubStation or HubStation HD by returning their present analogue set-top boxes to one of the four StarHub Customer Service Centres. Alternatively, they can contact StarHub at 1633 to request for an appointment to conduct the exchange in their homes.