UPC is in the process of moving is digital TV multiplexes to QAM256 modulation, replacing QAM64. Ziggo has also started using QAM256.
The switch from QAM256 to QAM64 makes it possible to stream more channels in a single multiplex, 50.6 Mbps instead of 38 Mbps. This frees up capacity for more digital channels and other services such as broadband access.
QAM256 has the disadvantage of being more susceptible to interference and requires a better quality of in-home coax wiring.
In order to free up more bandwidth, Ziggo is also in the process of reducing the number of analogue channels it distributes.
UPC, on the other hand, said it will keep the current number of analogue channels as it has enough capacity on the network to let its digital TV offer grow. The cabler will extend it digital offer on Tuesday, April 3, with more channels, both SD and HD.
For the moment, both operators will continue using DVB-C for the distribution of the TV channels. However, both UPC and Ziggo are studying DVB-C2.