, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 14 – Six out of 10 people in Nairobi have switched to digital television broadcasts.
This is according to the latest report by GeoPoll, a global mobile research firm, which shows that 68 percent of them are on pay-TV digital decoders, which have a monthly fee, while the remaining 32 are on Set-Top-Boxes, which receive basic stations for free.
Across the country, 45 percent are already on digital broadcast with 58 percent of them accessing through pay-TV and 21percent on STBs.
“We asked respondents who had not yet made the switch what factors were impacting their switch, finding that the high expense was the most popular response, 43 percent, followed by “don’t know how” at 15 percent,” the report explained.
Examining when these respondents were planning to switch from analogue to digital, 29 percent said they plan to switch in the next month, and 21 percent plan to switch in the next two to three months, in line with the government’s deadline of June 2015.
However, 18 percent said they will wait a year to switch, and 14 percent indicated they would never switch, demonstrating some resistance to the change.
“These results could indicate that public messaging has been mixed around the transition: while many are aware they will need a set-top-box, some do not know why it will be required,” the survey revealed.
GeoPoll conducted the survey with 400 Kenyans from across the country on January 12, 2015.
On the other hand, the survey shows that a majority of Kenyans, especially those who have switched to digital broadcasting are aware of the benefits compared to analogue TV broadcast.
In Nairobi, 77 percent knew of the benefits to digital with most of them centering their answers around the clarity of pictures and the additional stations they will receive.
“Digital signals have several benefits to analogue: digital signals provide clearer pictures and sound, a wider selection of channels, and use less bandwidth to transit, which will enable Kenya to use more bandwidth for other services,” the report says.
Stations affected by the analogue switch off which started on December 31, 2014 include QTV, K24, Family TV, East Africa TV, Kiss TV and GBS.
Citizen TV, NTV and KTN are still airing on analogue after moving to Supreme Court.