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Saturday 18 August 2018
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Tatt looks to regulate Android Boxes

Image courtesy Trinistore.biz

Pirates of the Caribbean be here warned–the days of free content streaming via Android boxes may soon be ending.

The Telecommunications Authority (TATT) will begin consultations for the regulation of Android boxes next week, after lobbying by subscription television providers.

Among the suggestions will be the certification of Android boxes for a certain scope of use, as well as possibly banning the importation of the devices under the Copyright Act.

The popular devices are used to stream content–sometimes illegally– from online, to the user's television. Revenue for subscription TV providers has been dwindling in the last few years, with TATT estimating a drop from $183 million in the last quarter of 2016, to $164 million in the same period for 2017.

Among the major contributors, the industry believes, is the proliferation of Android boxes. One executive suggested the loss in just value added tax (VAT) to the government is at least $30 million, not including losses from licensing fees and royalty payments.

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