Direct-to-mobile streaming will cause disruption for cable, DTH: Apurva Chandra

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) Secretary Apurva Chandra said the convergence between Direct-to-Mobile and 5G broadband will improve broadband consumption and spectrum utilization in India.

Speaking at an IIT conclave in Kanpur on “Direct to Mobile and 5G Broadband – Convergence Roadmap for India”, Chandra said convergence between Direct-to-Mobile and 5G Broadband will lead to changes in the infrastructure in addition to regulation.

He also said that traditional delivery platforms will experience disruption once Direct-to-Mobile technology officially launches. “Once Direct-to-Mobile technology arrives, the cable and DTH sectors will be hugely impacted because it will involve streaming direct to the home without the need for an intermediary and that will be a very big change,” said Chandra.

Prasar Bharati and IIT-Kanpur had collaborated last year to test the feasibility of trialing next-generation broadcast technology (direct-to-mobile streaming, convergence with 5G), automatic speech recognition for closed captioning voice (making content available in various Indian languages) and Retrieval of archive content by audio and text query.

Chandra also said that direct-to-mobile streaming will also benefit broadcasters as they will gain access to a new set of audiences. “This technology will certainly be a huge benefit to broadcasters because the number of consumers for a show is limited to 20 crore or 21 crore households that have television. Once this direct transmission takes place, I’m sure viewing habits will will change and that the consumption of news will multiply in the country.

He noted that India is one of the biggest consumers of internet data. He pointed out that there are 1.2 billion mobile devices in the country, of which 750 million are smartphones. “82% of Internet traffic is video. 1.1 million minutes of video are consumed every second, which equates to 60 billion DVDs in a month.”

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