Mexico officially adopts ATSC standard for digital television

The government of Mexico formally adopted the ATSC DTV standard for digital terrestrial television broadcasting July 2.

Mexico’s Secretary of Communications and Transportation issued a detailed policy document about DTV broadcasting. The policy is based on recommendations developed by a government and industry consultative committee following an October 2003 directive from Mexican President Vicente Fox.

Several experimental ATSC DTV stations have already been on the air in Mexico. The official adoption of the ATSC standard brings Mexico in line with the transition to digital television broadcasting occurring in the United States and Canada.

By Dec. 31, 2006, commercial DTV services will be available in Mexico’s three largest cities: Mexico City, Guadalajara and Monterrey, as well as in some cities along the Mexican-U.S. border.

Mexican broadcasters have been involved in developing broadcast standards for 15 years, according to ATSC president Mark Richer. Both Mexico and Canada participated in the decade-long U.S. DTV standards development process that selected the ATSC DTV standard, he added.

Since December 1996, when the FCC approved the standard, it has been adopted by the governments of Canada (November 1997), South Korea (November 1997) and Argentina (October 1998).

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