Radio broadcasting in Azerbaijan for the first time was started on November 6, 1926, but TV broadcasting – on February 14, 1956.
Currently, there is analogue (FM) and digital (DAB+) radio broadcasting and digital terrestrial television broadcasting in the DVB-T/T2 standard.
Nationwide FM radio programmes are broadcast in most areas of the country and the coverage of radio programmes on demand is also expanding.
According to decision No. 274 of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated 13 September 2006, it was decided to implement European digital television standard DVB-T in the territory of the republic, and the “Programme on introduction and development of DVB-T digital TV broadcasting system in the territory of the Republic of Azerbaijan” was approved by decision No. 26 of the Cabinet of Ministers dated 10 February 2011. The implementation of this programme has been successfully completed.
In connection with the transition to digital broadcasting in the Republic of Azerbaijan, test broadcasting in the new format was started for the first time in 2004 at the new Baku TV Tower, and broadcasting of 4 TV programs in MPEG-2 standard was tested. In 2008 test broadcasting in MPEG-4 standard started in Baku. Since 2009, 12 TV programmes have been broadcasted in MPEG-4 standard in Baku and adjacent areas and 35% of the population has been able to receive digital TV. In 2010, the digital TV broadcasting network in the country was expanded to cover Ganja, Shirvan and the southern region of the republic, and 55% of the population was provided with digital TV.
At present, an open package of 10-12 digital TV programmes is broadcast in the territory where more than 99.8% of the country’s population lives.
The main advantages of the digital switchover are the reception of television programmes in high quality, the efficient use of strategically important frequency resources and the reception of numerous TV programmes through terrestrial broadcasting.
In accordance with clause 5.1.7 of the Action Plan of the “State Programme for Implementation of the National Strategy for Development of Information Society in the Republic of Azerbaijan for 2016–2020”, approved by the Order of the President of the Republic of Azerbaijan dated 20 September 2016, in accordance with the National Television and Radio Broadcasting Council’s Decision No.10 dated 27 September 2016, terrestrial analogue broadcasting in Baku and Absheron peninsula was terminated from 1 November 2016, and on 20 December 2016 analogue television broadcasting was completely stopped in the country. Thus, the process of transition to digital television was completed.
Along with terrestrial digital broadcasting, nationwide radio and television programmes are also broadcast from the Azerspace-1 satellite.
Teleradio Production Association also provides IPTV service through a head-end station installed in the Baku TV Tower Complex.