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Ratings agency dips its toe into digital TV waters

New meter can monitor up to 1,000 channels

TOKYO — Video Research, the ratings agency used by Japan’s commercial TV broadcasters, has developed a system for monitoring up to 1,000 digital satellite channels.

The agency aims to have the sat channels ratings system in place by April 2001.

The new box for tracking multichannel TV viewing, called the Digital Meter, is two-thirds the size of the agency’s conventional box, which can monitor only 144 channels.

Video Research will work with broadcasters to get the satellite ratings system into test operations by the end of the year, when the government’s next generation broadcast satellite takes to the air.

The agency also said that it has developed a new people meter ratings system that will be go into operation in the Osaka region this April. The new meter can monitor the viewing habits of 19 different groups ranging from children to the head of the household.

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