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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

CNN shuts down Baghdad bureau Rebecca Hawkes | 03-06-2013 CNN has become the final US television news network to shut

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    CNN shuts down Baghdad bureau
    Rebecca Hawkes | 03-06-2013
    CNN has become the final US television news network to shut down its bureau in Baghdad, following the closure by Fox News of its base in the Iraqi capital earlier this year.
    The move by CNN to close the bureau it first opened in 1990 comes a year and a half after President Obama withdrew the last US troops from Iraq.
    "While CNN is departing its current brick-and-mortar location in Baghdad, the network continues to maintain an editorial presence in Iraq through a dedicated team of CNN stringers and correspondent assignments as news warrants," a CNN spokesperson told TV Newser.
    Other international broadcasters, including Al Jazeera and the BBC, still retain their Baghdad offices while the US networks ABC News and NBC News now only have one producer based in the capital city.
    The news comes as the United Nations reported the deaths of over 1,000 people in Iraq in May, making it the highest monthly death toll in the troubled Middle Eastern country since the wide sectarian violence of 2006-7.

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    Mediaset lands Roland Garros broadcasting rights
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 03-06-2013

    Mediaset has reached a last minute agreement to broadcast the final stages of the Roland Garros tennis tournament.
    The Grand Slam tournament was thus far only broadcast by Canal+, and the matches were, for the first time in Spain, not available free-to-air. However, now Mediaset has got the rights for the final matches of the competition which finishes in a week.
    The company's DTT sports channel Energy will broadcast the most important match of each day. If a Spanish player gets into the semi-finals, Cuatro will be responsible for broadcasting the last match.
    Roland Garros usually receives a high number of viewers as it is a very popular tournament with tennis fans. Also, more than one Spanish player always makes it to the final stages of the championship and this encourages high viewer numbers in Spain.
    Mediaset is clearly committed to sports, which is the only programming that is really successful for the group, especially for Cuatro. The company already has the broadcasting rights for, among other things, MotoGP, the FIFA Confederations Cup, the matches of Spain's national football team and Eurobasket.

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    Mobile TV plans unveiled by India's Doordarshan
    Rebecca Hawkes | 03-06-2013

    India's public broadcaster Doordarshan (DD) is expanding its mobile TV service to smartphone, tablet and laptop users in 40 or more major cities, according to the Press Trust of India (PTI).
    Digital video broadcasting (DVB-T2) services are expected to start in the nation's first ten cities before the end of 2013, officials working for broadcast operator Praser Bharati told the agency.
    "One of the biggest advantages this service would offer is that there would be no buffering and the clarity would be high definition. It would be like watching normal high definition TV on the move," the official is quoted as saying by PTI.
    While most of the content will be provided by DD, private broadcasters are reportedly being invited by Praser Bharati to explore the opportunities of carriage on the mobile network.
    The plans follow a mobile TV pilot project in May 2007 by Praser Bharati in New Delhi. The bouquet of eight channels was then available to DVB-H enabled mobile phones, within a 10km radius of the transmitter in Parliament Street.

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    T-Broad deploys Alticast’s Windmill Ecosystem for TV apps
    Louise Duffy | 03-06-2013

    Korean cable operator T-Broad has deployed Alticast’s Windmill Ecosystem. Based on the HTML5 next generation open Web standard, Windmill provides T-Broad with a future-proofed TV application development platform free from vendor lock-in.
    Windmill is an ecosystem of open modular technologies to enable service providers to quickly and cost-effectively deploy innovative services. Through its native support for HTML5, Alticast’s Windmill makes it easy for T-Broad to follow its plans to launch companion device services for smartphones and tablets.
    Using Windmill, T-Broad has designed a new, translucent EPG, which allows users to interact with the TV without their viewing being obstructed.
    T-Broad CEO, Sang Yoon Lee, said: “We thought it was time to break away from the idea that a grid EPG is the only way to interact with the TV. We have worked with Alticast to use the flexibility of the Windmill Ecosystem to provide exciting, new ways to interact with the TV.”
    T-Broad has used Windmill to provide the following customised and personalised TV apps:
    Neighbourhood weather updated hourly and provided with auto detect location for maximum ease of use
    Personalised recommendations based on viewing behaviour, purchase history and preferences
    Personalised experience for each viewer
    Single key Return function that cycles through the four most recent channels
    “It is clear that HTML5 is set to power most next generation TV application development,” said Thomas Jung, chief marketing officer at Alticast. ”By providing T-Broad with a native HTML5 development platform, it is easy for T-Broad to develop exciting new applications that will enhance the MSO’s competitive position in the market. The new applications and services will create additional revenue streams, reducing churn and attracting new customers.”

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    Spain's Marca TV to continue broadcasting
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 03-06-2013
    The Spanish channel Marca TV may continue to broadcast beyond 30 June – the day Mediapro and Unidad Editorial were due to shut it down.
    According to Periodista Digital, the employees have received a communication from the board of directors saying that the channel will keep broadcasting, although more details were not given.
    This is not the first time that Marca TV has been near to closure. Last year it was also on the verge of closing but Unidad Editorial decided to give it one more season, as no suitable buyer had been found. The latest changes to Spanish law and the possibility of selling the signal to a QVC shopping channel made the channels closure likely this year.
    The future of the channel is still not clear. Even though the owners have decided it is profitable enough to keep, the Spanish Government has been forced to close at least nine channels following a recent ruling of the Supreme Court, and this number could rise to 17.
    Supporting a TV channel is a huge commitment for a company like Unidad Editorial, which clearly intends to keep the newspapers Marca and El Mundo going in what is a difficult time for them. This is why Marca TV has already sold the broadcasting rights of La Liga Adelante to RTVE and those of La Liga BBVA to Mediaset.

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    Russia undergoes HD revolution
    June 4, 2013 09.13 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul

    The number of HD viewers in Russia has grown ten-fold in the last year, resulting in an APRU increase of around 10% for pay-TV operators.
    Quoting Telecomdaily, Vedomosti reports that the number of active subscribers to HD services – defined as watching at one HD channel at least once a week – in the country stood at around 4 million as of the end of May, compared to 400,000 a year earlier.
    At the same time, the number of HD channels available to viewers has increased significantly, from an average of six to 30, with the leading providers being ER Telecom (41), VimpelCom (36) and Tricolor TV (25).
    The Russian pay-TV market is estimated to have been worth R47.5 billion (€1.14 billion) in 2012, with HDTV viewers contributing R3 billion to the total.
    Tricolor TV, the country’s leading DTH platform, had 1.45 million subscribers to its HD offer, launched only last summer, as of the end of this March.

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    Cyfrowy Polsat goes down PVR route
    June 4, 2013 08.51 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul

    Poland’s Cyfrowy Polsat has launched a new decoder known as the PVR HD 7000.
    Featuring an internal 320 GB hard disk, it allows for the reception of HD channels and once connected to the internet access to thousands of free audiovisual clips from the service ipla.
    According to Cyfrowy Polsat, this is the first box it has produced with an internal hard disk.
    Its features include two digital satellite tuners, allowing for the simultaneous recording and reception of programming.
    The PVR HD 7000 is available to Cyfrowy Polsat subscribers receiving the Premium and Familijny Max HD packages for PLN49 (€11.5) a month.
    Those who opt for basic packages are required to pay an additional PLN5-10 a month. Cyfrowy Polsat operates the leading DTH platform in Poland of the same name, which currently has over 3.5 million subscribers.

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    Telenet moves to CI Plus with SmarDTV
    June 4, 2013 08.40 Europe/London By Julian Clover

    Belgian cable operator Telenet will this month launch a CI Plus conditional access module (CAM) across its network in Brussels and Flanders.
    The cablenet has chosen SmarDTV as its supplier and will use SmarCAM-3.5, embedded with the latest generation of conditional access system from sister company Nagra.
    “The CI Plus module is an addition to our digital products that corresponds to the demand of TV subscribers, wanting a basic digital TV subscription without any extras. These modules provide our TV subscribers with an attractive solution that can be used with TV sets compliant with CI Plus Standard on the market since 2010,” said Laurent Van Tornhout, Telenet director of TV product management.
    “Telenet is a valued new customer and we are delighted to be able to provide our latest CAM to them,” said Conor Ryan, SmarDTV VP of Marketing. “The SmarCAM-3.5 module brings many benefits to Telenet subscribers including being non-intrusive, very simple to install without any new cabling and remaining invisible once installed.”
    As previously reported in Broadband TV News, announced its plans to introduce CI Plus in February, following a campaign by the consumer champions Test Aankoop.

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    SES-6 successfully launched
    June 4, 2013 08.33 Europe/London By Robert Briel

    The SES-6 satellite roared into space on board an ILS Proton Breeze M booster on Monday, June 3, at 1531 pm Baikonur time.
    After a 15-hour, 31-minute mission, the Breeze M upper stage of the Proton rocket successfully released the SES-6 satellite directly into geostationary transfer orbit.
    Following the successful launch, SES also announces the Brazilian telecommunication group Oi is a new anchor customer who signed a significant long-term capacity agreement to provide Direct-to-Home (DTH) services in Brazil. With the agreement, Oi becomes the largest user of the new satellite.
    “With SES-6, Oi has access to significant additional satellite capacity at exactly the right time in order to take its pay-TV services to the next level of development,” said James Meaney, COO of Oi. “We will be able to meet consumers’ demand for a greater diversity of channels, many in high-definition, as soon as possible.”
    “This very important capacity agreement for a large part of the Ku-band transponders of SES-6 enables Oi to launch a new DTH platform for the Brazilian market,” said Romain Bausch, President and CEO of SES.
    “This agreement is a quantum leap for us in this very important and dynamically growing market, demonstrating how satellites substantially support telecommunication companies in the development and delivery of triple- and quadruple-play hybrid services. In addition, by early replacing the NSS-806 satellite and by adding new C-band capacity, the investment into the SES-6 satellite reflects our strong focus on the Latin American market and the development of an important video neighborhood at the 40.5 degrees West orbital position.”
    SES-6 replaces SES’ NSS-806 satellite at the prime orbital position of 40.5 degrees West, providing continuity of service and expansion capacity in the C-band for video neighborhoods in Latin America and the Caribbean. It has comprehensive coverage of North America, Latin America, Europe and the Atlantic Ocean.
    SES-6 was built by EADS Astrium in Toulouse, France, based on the highly reliable Eurostar E3000 platform. The satellite is equipped with 43 C-band and 48 Ku-band transponders. SES-6 had a launch mass of 6,100 kg, features a wingspan of 40m once its solar arrays are deployed in orbit, and is designed for 13 kW of spacecraft power at the end of its 15-year design lifetime.
    “We would like to thank Astrium and ILS for the successful SES-6 mission. The 53rd satellite in SES’ global fleet provides significant capacity expansion at a strategic orbital slot over the Americas, both for a compelling DTH offer to Brazilian audiences as well as for cable distribution across Latin America and the Caribbean. We will work closely with Oi to deploy and roll out these new services to the Brazilian audience”, concluded Romain Bausch, president and CEO of SES.

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    Dutch digital TV reaches 84%
    June 4, 2013 08.29 Europe/London By Robert Briel

    The number of digital TV connections in the Netherlands rose 1.7% during the first quarter to 6.478 million homes, according to Telecompaper.
    The total includes 3.67 million cable TV subscribers who also have an analogue TV connection. Almost 84% of all Dutch consumer TV connections use digital TV services. Telecompaper expects the number of digital TV connections to grow this year by 7.5% to around 6.85 million connections at year end.
    Cable accounted for 56.6% of digital TV subscribers in Q1, despite losing market share due to the growing adoption of IPTV over DSL and FTTH services.
    DSL is the second-largest technology on both the total and digital TV markets, followed by satellite and terrestrial. The latter are both losing market shares.
    Ziggo remained the largest TV operator at the end of the quarter, both in the total TV market and the digital TV market, followed by KPN, UPC and CanalDigitaal.
    Telecompaper estimates Q1 retail revenues for the consumer TV market at EUR 384 million, up 0.8 percent during the quarter.


 

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