Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on 11 August, 2017 issued a consultation note on solution architecture for technical interoperable set top box (STB).
TRAI presents the solution architecture for technically interoperable STB to all the concerned stakeholders to seek their comments on proposed solution.
Stakeholders including CAS providers, SoC vendors, middleware providers, EPG solution providers, STB manufacturers, Smart Card providers, and service providers like broadcasters, multi system operators, and DTH operators can provide their comments on the proposed solution architecture for technical interoperable STB by 25 August 2017.
Presently, distribution platform operator (DPO) — cable TV and Direct-to-Home (DTH) platforms — provides STB, which is compatible with his network to provide services to subscriber.
Over a period of time, variety of technologies has been deployed by DPOs into the networks. It has led to a situation where STBs provided by one operator are not compatible with the system of the other operator
The lack of technical interoperability of STBs between different service providers has adverse effect on competition and service quality in the Pay-TV distribution market. Non availability of STB in an open market is also a major hindrance to technological innovations. Whenever, a consumer changes its service provider, the STB of existing service provider becomes useless as the same STB cannot be used; resulting into electronic waste (e-waste).
Framework of interoperable STB
# The level of security should be similar to or better than what is present today
# The framework must be sound enough to prevent reception of services by unauthorized persons
# The prices of the interoperable STBs should remain comparable to non-interoperable STBs
# The portability cost should reduce considerably
# The DPOs should be able to choose security solutions (Conditional Access System) as per their requirements
# The proposed solution must be able to identify pirates, if any
# The User Interface (UI) and Electronic Program Guide (EPG) format customization
# The framework should ensure that TV channels with EPG listing continue to be available to the consumers on migration to another operator
TRAI joined hands with IIT-Bombay and Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DOT) to address the concerns of the stakeholders in respect of interoperable STBs.
C-DOT, the telecom technology development centre of the Government of India, in coordination with TRAI, has developed a solution for interoperable STBs.