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TV, hitch on new technology: the postponement of the switch off is being studied

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Three months after the first deadline for the transition to new generation digital terrestrial, the request from the world of broadcasters is peremptory: “We ask to eliminate the obligation to completely abandon the old standards by introducing flexibility linked to the diffusion of new devices in homes Italians”.

The appeal to the Mise

The letter sent by Confindustria Radio Televisioni to the Ministry of Economic Development, and that The sun 24 hours was able to view, it is dated June 3. Another one of June 7 followed, addressed to Minister Giancarlo Giorgetti and to Undersecretary Anna Ascani who is following the dossier, with the index pointing to specific fears linked to local TV.


All this derives from the arrival in Italy of the new digital terrestrial with relative liberation of the frequencies of the 700 MHz band whose availability will pass from TV to the world of Tlc. It will happen on 1 July 2022, when the digital TV now in use (Dvb-T) will turn off to switch to the second generation one (Dvb-T2). And without adequate televisions, or alternatively ad hoc decoders, the screens will remain dark.

New compression and encoding standard

But the first trap will be on September 1st when the compression and encoding standard will change throughout the national territory (with the abandonment of MPEG-2 in favor of standards such as MPEG-4 or higher). Translated: only HD TVs will work and old ones no longer. In view of the double switch off, starting from the 2018 budget law, 150 million have been allocated to incentivize, up to 50 euros, the purchase of new models without scrapping the old ones and limiting aid to families with Isee up to 20 thousand EUR. The campaign, however, is slow. According to the data available to Sole 24 Ore and from the Mise source, from 2019 to the end of May 25 million were disbursed. All this for 430,487 new televisions and 83,706 decoders of which 67,405 for the dtt and 16,301 for the satellite. The pace of contributions improved towards the end of last year, after the launch of an important communication campaign by the Mise. In any case, the Mise decree is now awaited, which must unlock the new bonus for the scrapping of televisions: 100 euros for everyone, without the Isee limit, to be worth 100 million of the latest budget law.

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The requests of the operators

Persidera (operator holding Mux) dissociated itself from the letter of June 3. “To date – we read – the number of television sets not suitable for receiving the new digital TV is still dramatically very high and incompressible in the short term”. What to do then? According to Confindustria Radio Tv, “the process of progressive shutdown of the technologies currently in use must be made more flexible”. Operationally, therefore: “Eliminate the compulsory disposal of the MPEG-2 throughout the national territory starting from 1 September 2021”. Another point: “Provide the right (and not obligatory) in the activation of the DVB-T2 standard as long as the levels of diffusion of the new standards are not such as to allow the diffusion of the programs to the totality (or almost) of the population (the first , but also second and third televisions) ». All with a deadline: “It is necessary to set the start date of the refarming process for the construction of new networks by 15 June 2021 and to publish the new decree for the scrapping of obsolete televisions, replacing the current decree on Bonus TV”.

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