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Bharti to Reportedly Start Making Set-Top Boxes in India

Bharti to Reportedly Start Making Set-Top Boxes in India

A company under Sunil Bharti Mittal-led Bharti Enterprises is likely to make set-top boxes in partnership with an electronics manufacturer in the country.

"Bharti is planning to make set-top boxes (STBs) in Pune in partnership with an electronics manufacturing company under its commitment to support Prime Minister's vision on Make in India," a source aware of the project said.

A Bharti Enterprises spokesperson declined to comment.

The process of cable digitisation is under way in a phased manner, which is fuelling demand for STBs.

The government has mandated that the cable TV transmission would be done through digital addressable system only where consumer can access to large number of TV channels compared to only 60-70 channels that they can access through analogue cable transmission.

The switch over from analogue system to digital is being done in four phases. The Phase 3 would complete by the end of this year while the last phase by next year.

Foreign STB makers almost wiped out domestic players during phase 1 and 2 of cable TV digitalisation with around 95 percent market share. These phases covered Delhi NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and 38 cities having population of more than 1 million.

Out of total installation of about 55 million units, domestic players were able to sell about 10 million units of STBs as on December, 2012.

By March 2014, more than 22 million STBs were deployed in the country, as per telecom and broadcast regulator Trai.

As per industry estimates, the cable digitisation programme has created huge demand for STBs and it is likely to reach 75 million units by 2016-17.

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