Lessons and Opportunities in Rwanda’s Digital Migration fairy tale

Rwanda’s Digital Migration process has emerged as a fairy tale of success compared to challenges faced by its East African neighbours. The analogue switch off took place in July 2014, a year ahead of the June 2015 global deadline. Tanzania has also switched off Analogue television while Kenya remains embroiled in litigation between the sector regulator and a consortium of 3 broadcasters. Burundi and Uganda lag far behind without adequate coverage and with a limited chance of meeting the switch-over deadline. However, Digital Migration in Rwanda has not been without challenges in a country with only 7 per cent TV viewership and limited capacity in local content production. The country was also forced to migrate using a digital network based on the older DVB-T technology. A significant cost will be incurred when upgrading to the agreed DVB-T2/MPEG4 system. This was highlighted in our 2014 article – Migrate then Upgrade: Rwanda to use older DVB-T technology.