Thu, Mar 08, 2018 - Page 3 News List

Regulator approves Kbro’s TV channel rearrangement plan

By Shelley Shan  /  Staff reporter

The National Communications Commission (NCC) yesterday approved cable service operator Kbro’s channel lineup adjustment, although it left Next TV and Azio TV channel positions unchanged.

NCC spokesperson Weng Po-tsung (翁柏宗) said that Kbro, the nation’s largest multiple service operator at the end of last year, filed an application to move some channels with poor ratings from between channels No. 1 and No. 85 to above channel No. 100, including Next TV and Azio TV.

However, Kbro changed its application, asking to move Win TV HD from channel No. 82 to No. 76, which was approved by commissioners, Weng said.

Next TV and Azio TV are still on channels No. 49 and No. 37 respectively, he said.

Kbro last year defended its proposed adjustments, saying that they would ensure that cable service subscribers have access to high-quality TV programming and that they would enhance competition among channels.

ERA Communications, which is owned by media tycoon Lien Tai-shen (練台生), owns Next TV and Azio TV.

Win TV HD is owned by Kbro, which is owned by Fubon Group chairman Daniel Tsai (蔡明忠).

Next TV general manager Chen Shou-kuo (陳守國) criticized Kbro’s application, saying that the reasons for an adjustment were illegitimate.

Chen said he was told that Kbro planned to have a news channel owned by Asia Digital Media Co replace Next TV on channel No. 49.

“Asia Digital Media has two news channels, which can only be viewed on Chunghwa Telecom’s multimedia-on-demand [MOD] platform. I have looked at their ratings, which were less than half the ratings of Next TV on MOD,” Chen said.

Next TV filed a complaint with the commission, prompting the commissioners to review the case and solicit opinions from local governments.

Industry experts have said that Kbro’s application was intended as retaliation for being undercut by Taipei Net — a cable service Lien has invested in — which has many cable service areas in Taipei and New Taipei City, where Kbro used to have a competitive advantage.

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