According to an article carried by IT News Africa today, Kenyan mobile network operator, Safaricom has applied for a digital broadcasting licence.
This move comes as the MNO is setting out to harness the opportunities that have come from the digital migration which was carried out in Kenya. This is the same analogue to digital migration that Zimbabwe is currently involved in with a deadline for completion set by ITU.
Safaricom has also sought approval to distribute set-top boxes as part of this new venture into broadcasting. This is meant to help Safaricom introduce internet services to households that have TV sets.
It looks like Safaricom is eyeing the same investment angle that Econet Wireless has been exploring with its yet to be released ipidi Pay TV service. There hasn’t been any mention of it in a while, but the changes in the digital landscape, especially with regards to broadcasting, this ought to mean changes in the near future.
There are massive opportunities that exist in owning both the distribution network and eventually the content or rights to it. Which is what internet service providers like Safaricom and Econet want to pursue. The rise of an alternative to MultiChoice is what everyone hopes for so this should have a positive response from the market.