Metro Manila, Philippines (August 15, 2016) – ABS-CBN Corporation reports that it already sold more than 1.3 million ABS-CBN TVPlus digital TV receivers, popularly known as “Mahiwagang Black Box” as of June 2016.

On a press statement released on Wednesday, August 10, the country’s leading media and entertainment company disclosed that more than a million households are now enjoying a clear reception of ABS-CBN through one of its key initiatives, the Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT). After years of poor signal in some parts of Luzon due to network transmission issues, ABS-CBN has finally found the solution by going digital.

ABS-CBN sold more than 1.3 million digital television boxes as of June 2016.

ABS-CBN launched its DTT service in February 2015, about two months after the National Telecommunications Commission (NTC) issued the guidelines on the shift to DTT broadcast (DTTB). ABS-CBN TVPlus can receive digital television broadcasts using the Japanese standard, the Integrated Services Digital Broadcasting-Terrestrial (ISDB-T). ISDB-T is the sole digital TV (DTV) standard adopted by the Philippines. The analog switch-off, according to NTC, is expected to be fully implemented by 2020.

DTT offers clear picture and sound experience. ABS-CBN TVPlus receives ISDB-T broadcast in clear picture and better sound quality comparable to watching a movie on DVD or cable television.

The latest version of ABS-CBN TVPlus digital box. Photo courtesy of ABS-CBN Corporation.

Aside from clear audio and video, TVPlus owners can watch existing free-to-air channels of ABS-CBN Corporation which includes ABS-CBN Channel 2 and ABS-CBN Sports+Action. It also offers five premium channels: a 24-hour Tagalog movie channel (CineMo!), a news channel (DZMM TeleRadyo), a kids channel (Yey!), an educational channel (The Knowledge Channel) and the newest Kapamilya Box Office (KBO) channel.

Kapamilya Box Office (KBO)

In March 2016, TVPlus launched the KBO channel exclusive to TVPlus owners. It is a “pay TV” concept where viewers can access premium ABS-CBN content like entertainment shows and latest movies in crystal-clear DTV viewing. For as low as Php 30 load using any ABS-CBNmobile prepaid SIM card, viewers can enjoy a movie bonding with the family, without commercial breaks, by texting a code and seven-character TVPlus box ID to 2131. This will activate KBO on TVPlus’ 7th channel.

DTV transmitter sites

ABS-CBN also announced that all sites under Phase 1 of its DTT migration were already operational as of June 2016. Currently, the DTV broadcast of “Kapamilya” network can be received in the following locations:

  • Bacolod
  • Iloilo
  • Cagayan De Oro
  • Metro Cebu
  • Metro Manila
  • Laguna
  • Bulacan
  • Pampanga
  • Nueva Ecija
  • Tarlac
  • Pangasinan
  • Benguet
  • Rizal
  • Cavite
  • Davao

Other networks

While ABS-CBN TVPlus offers exclusive content, it can also receive free-to-air and broadcasts of other TV networks. In Metro Manila, several networks already began their simulcast test broadcast using the ISDB-T technology, though some still have weak signal strength. These include ABS-CBN’s rival GMA Network, BEAM, CNN Philippines, Hope Channel, GEMNET, PTV4, SMNI, Solar Entertainment, TV5 and UNTV News and Rescue.

1H 2016 financial performance

ABS-CBN Corporation reported a Php 2.1 billion net income for the first-half of 2016, 76% higher than the same period last year. It recorded a Php 20.9 billion consolidated revenue, 19% higher than Php 17.6 billion on the same period in 2015. ABS-CBN’s Chief Financial Officer Aldrin Cerrado said “The improvement in our ratings, coupled with the newly implemented cost per individual rating point pricing scheme, contributed to the increase in our advertising revenues.” [techthetruth]

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