Everything you need to know about the switchover to digital television in Costa Rica

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    Starting on December 15th of 2017 the open signal will switchover to the digital format of television. It could seem like there is still a long road but there are many questions about it, people are still wondering if they have to change their television or if they are going to need a special converter. That is why we prepared this article so you can clarify your doubts.

    The Government, through the Telecommunications Vice-Ministry, started the transition period towards digital television. It will be on December 15th of 2017 when analogue TV will stop working.

    What is it mean? That your TV will stop getting signal through air with the traditional antenna. This means that you will only be affected if you use that TV method because those who pay for cable TV won’t see any difference. According to the data National Household Survey of 2015, 35% of the population uses analogue TV (air signal through an antenna).

    What do you need to know about the switchover?

    December 15th, 2017 henceforth, for you to see open and free TV  you will need a TV compatible with the Japanese-Brazilian standard and if you do not have one then, yes, in that case you will need a special converter.

    However, you do not have to worry because the converters will be of easy access and low cost. The Vice-Minister of Telecommunications, Emilio Arias, says that the cost of the converter is estimated to be around $25 and $50 according to the experience of other Latin American countries.

    televisión_digital (1)

    In addition, the Ministry of Finance eliminated the 15% tax that these devices used to pay, this to reduce the cost and make it affordable to the population.

    “The Executive Branch should promote that every Costa Rican gets ready to migrate to the digitalization, especially those in vulnerable situations. From the Vice-Ministry of Telecommunications we are leading specific actions to guarantee inclusion and narrow the digital divide,” explained the Vice-Minister of this portfolio, Emilio Arias.

    television_digital-Costa_Rica-impuesto-costo_LNCIMA20160126_0172_29Do I have to change my TV?

    Do not worry thinking that your old TV won’t work anymore, as we already explained as long as it has an exterior or interior antenna, capable of receiving air signals in VHF (channels from 2 to 13) and UHF (channels from 14 to 69), and a standard Japanese-Brazilian (ISDBTb) converter (set top box) then you can get digital signal to be seen in your current TV.

    What is a converter and how does it get connected?Convertidor (diarioextra.com)

    Is a device that receives digital signal and converts it into a signal that can be seen in any TV or screen that does not have the Japanese-Brazilian standard. You have to connect the antenna to the converter and then to the TV without the Japanese-Brazilian standard to enjoy of a better quality image and sound that the digital television offers.

    What to do in case of any other doubt

    In November of 2015 the literacy process got started which will allow the citizens to be ready for this technological switchover. This first stage of the communication campaign will last until April of 2016.

    This is why the Ministry of Science and Technology will offer informative talks in several shopping centers in the country. In Grecia will be February 20th in Plaza Grecia from 11a.m until 7p.m.

    Por eso, el Micit ofrecerá charlas informativas en varios centros comerciales del país. En Grecia van a estar el 20 de febrero en Plaza Grecia de 11 a.m. a 7 p.m.

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