Johannesburg - If all goes according to plan, from April 2010 South Africans will be able to start buying decoders in preparation for the country's switchover to digital television.
This process, the conversion of analogue signals to digital (also known as digital migration), will start commercially in the first half of 2010.
This means that decoders will need to be available and that the subsidy schemes for poor households will have to be in place, explains Karen Willenberg, a council member of Digital Dzonga.
According to Digital Dzonga chairperson Lara Kantor, about 60% of the country (mainly those in metropolitan areas) will then also be able to watch digital television.
The analogue signal will, however, remain switched on, being phased out over a period of about three years.
Digital Dzonga is an advisory council consisting of representatives from the industry, government and regulation spheres who will oversee the process and keep the South African population informed. The entity was officially introduced to the public on Tuesday.
Phia van der Spuy, HIS's business development director in South Africa, says the investment in Aengus is the company's biggest in affordable housing to date.
In late 2008 IHS created its R1.7bn Workforce Housing Fund to help meet the growing demand for affordable accommodation in the country.