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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Ministry of Sound joins Samsung smart TV club Parent Category: News | 08-06-2013 As it accelerates the number of connected

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    Ministry of Sound joins Samsung smart TV club
    Parent Category: News | 08-06-2013
    As it accelerates the number of connected TV apps that it has available on its TVs, Samsung has signed up UK super club Ministry of Sound to provide its content to the entertainment hub.
    The new music App will showcase exclusive video content including interviews and behind the scenes footage covering genres such as house, dubstep, techno and trance. Ministry of Sound’s entire music video catalogue will be available with music constantly updated to help Smart TV viewers find the best new music regardless of dance music genre. Behind the Scenes will give viewers access to footage from video shoots and club events with Ministry of Sound’s artists, DJs and producers.
    Using the Smart interaction features, viewers can use gestures and everyday language to find their favourite tracks in Ministry of Sound’s music video catalogue and share content they’re watching on the Smart TV between Samsung Galaxy tablets and smartphones.
    Samsung claims more than 20 million downloads for its apps and Ministry of Sound Smart TV offering will join other video services including the ITV Player, BBC iPlayer, 4oD and Demand 5, Netflix, LOVEFiLM, and YouTube.
    ‘’When you bring such musical heritage to the living room, viewers expect not only the very best in picture quality but superior sound too,” commented Guy Kinnell, Director, TV/AV (UK) and Consumer Electronics (Ireland), Samsung Electronics. “The new Ministry of Sound App enables viewers to feel part of the live music action and bring the club experience into the comfort of their own home.’’
    Added James Garside, Mobile and Connected Devices, Ministry of Sound: “We're looking forward to giving dance music fans a taste of Ministry of Sound direct to Samsung Smart TVs. Live From The Club on Ministry of Sound Radio is a unique offering that allows users to stay in tune with the world famous DJs that play here.”

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    Tappp launches pre-paid Bollywood VOD service
    Louise Duffy | 08-06-2013
    Tappp, the prepaid consumer market place of Singapore-based Swissclear Global, has launched a Bollywood VOD service.
    Removing the need to commit to long-term subscription plans and credit cards, Tappp gives users immediate access to more than 4,000 Hindi and Tamil movies, which can be viewed anywhere, any time, on any device. This follows the addition of two of India’s largest on-demand entertainment providers ErosNow and Spuul on Swissclear Global’s payment network.
    Tappp prepaid cards are available across a global network of more than a million retail points, which include large chains, as well as small corner and convenience stores. Users need to buy prepaid cards or electronic vouchers at retail, and redeem them online or on their mobile devices for immediate viewing. Prepaid cards start at US$0.50.
    “Digital delivery of content is shaping a new entertainment ecosystem, where consumers are now in control. ‘What I want to watch, When I want to watch, and Where I want to watch’ is now a reality, with the flexibility to stop, pause and resume watching on different devices. This way, consumers can choose to start a movie/TV show on their Smart TV at night, continue it on their tablet at the airport, and finish watching it in on their PC/laptop at their next destination,” said Sandy Argawal, founder and CEO of Swissclear Global.
    “This whole concept of choice is taken even further by the worldwide phenomenon of prepaid and gift cards, as it not only frees them from costly contractual obligations, but also gives them the choice to spend only on what they want to consume. We are therefore very excited to be working with Eros and Spuul to offer consumers convenience and choice of on-demand entertainment.”
    S. Mohan, co-founder of Spuul, said: “We are confident that Tappp will have a broad appeal amongst the large number of consumers seeking an alternative to credit cards, in order to enjoy movies and TV shows on their PCs, smartphones and tablets. With a range of passes on offer, consumers may now get instant access to Spuul’s premium movies and shows, depending on their entertainment needs.”
    Rishika Lulla Singh, CEO of ErosNow, added: “ErosNow endeavours to provide a service that engages a new digital generation of South Asians globally and this exciting tie up with Tappp will enable us to deliver optimum customer experience to Bollywood fans around the world.”

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    TiVo settles with Moto, Cisco, Google and TWC
    By Chris Forrester 09/06/2013

    TiVo has settled its pending patent litigation with Motorola (now owned by Google and Arris), Cisco and Time Warner Cable and that TiVo has agreed to enter into certain patent licenses with Arris, Cisco, and Google. As part of the settlement, Google and Cisco will pay TiVo an upfront lump-sum payment of $490 million, bringing the total from awards and settlements related to the use of certain TiVo intellectual property to roughly $1.6 billion.
    In conjunction with approving the terms of the settlement, TiVo’s board of directors also approved a major expansion of TiVo’s stock repurchase authorisation. The board’s action doubles the size of the authorization from $100 million to $200 million and extends the stock repurchase plan for an additional two years until August 29, 2015. Additionally, TiVo intends to increase the size of its 10b5-1 trading plan significantly as a result. This will allow TiVo to build on the almost $57 million worth of equity acquired through open market purchases and from tax withholdings on employee restricted share vesting since the time the board of directors first authorised the $100 million stock repurchase plan. This increased and extended repurchase authorization means TiVo will have over $160 million of unused stock repurchase authorisation.
    “We are pleased to reach an agreement that brings our pending litigation to an end and further underscores the significant value our distribution partners derive from TiVo’s technological innovations and our shareholders derive from our investments in protecting TiVo’s intellectual property,” said Tom Rogers, CEO and President of TiVo. “Further, this settlement significantly enhances our already strong balance sheet, bringing our cash position to over $1 billion before inclusion of future expected payments of at least $400 million from prior settlements. We intend to use our significant capital resources to drive shareholder value, including more aggressively returning capital to shareholders under our newly increased share repurchase authorisation and we will be increasing the size of our 10B5-1 trading plan as soon as permissible.”
    Rogers added, “Importantly, we just recently closed one of our best quarters ever in terms of subscription growth, driven by a number of our existing operator deals in the U.S. and abroad that are now fully up and running. As a result, we delivered our highest gross margin ever and solid MSO revenue growth of 98 per cent year-over-year, and we expect this MSO revenue growth will continue as we roll out additional deployments. So, as we look out beyond today’s important settlement we believe our core operating business will continue to drive growth to both the top and bottom line.”
    As part of the settlement, TiVo and Motorola, Cisco, and Time Warner Cable agreed to dismiss all pending litigation between the companies. TiVo will recognise a portion of the payment as past damages during the second quarter and the remainder over time. The company intends to provide additional details regarding the timing of revenue recognition in its second quarter fiscal year 2014 earnings report. Further, as a result of this settlement, TiVo expects net income and Adjusted EBITDA to benefit from lower litigation spend in the remainder of its fiscal year ending January 31, 2014 and beyond.

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    Liberty completes Virgin Media acquisition

    As anticipated by Mike Fries, President and CEO of Liberty Global when participating in the TV Summit at ANGA COM in Cologne, the cable MSO has confirmed that, following shareholder approvals, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, it has completed the previously announced acquisition of UK quad-play operator Virgin Media in a stock and cash merger valued at approximately $24 billion.
    Fries described the event as “a great day” for customers, employees and shareholders of both Liberty Global and Virgin Media. “Together we now provide over 47 million video, voice and broadband services to 25 million customers located principally in 12 European countries. With superior network capacity, the fastest broadband speeds and innovative digital TV platforms, we’ve never been more excited about the growth potential and strategic direction of our business. Virgin Media will continue to thrive under the leadership of Tom Mockridge who starts as CEO today, with the support of a fantastic management team which includes both Liberty Global and Virgin Media executives.”
    Mockridge said that Virgin Media had become one of the UK’s most powerful media brands thanks to both the loyalty of its customers and the energy of its employees. “I am fortunate to be joining the company at this important inflection point in its development, and look forward to working closely with Mike and the broader Liberty Global team to deliver cutting-edge products and services that excite and inspire our customers,” he added.
    As a result of the closing, Liberty Global, a public limited company organised under the laws of England, has become the new public parent company of Liberty Global, Inc. and Virgin Media. Liberty Global’s Class A, Class B and Class C ordinary shares will begin trading on the NASDAQ Global Select Market on June 10, 2013 under the same symbols: LBTYA, LBTYB and LBTYK. The shares of both Liberty Global, Inc. and Virgin Media will cease trading at market close on June 7, 2013 and will be de-registered under securities laws. The listing of Virgin Media’s common stock on the Official List and the admission of those shares to trading on the Main Market of the London Stock Exchange will be cancelled with effect from 8:00 A.M. London time on June 10, 2013.

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    Sky: “No plans” to bundle Xbox One
    Editor 09/06/2013

    Sky has refuted reports that it was close to making a deal with Microsoft to put the new Xbox One console into homes at a vastly reduced price.
    Specialist site MCV had reported that Microsoft was in talks with the broadcaster to sell Xbox One with Sky subscriptions. It was suggested that the device could work as a set-top-box or companion device – “but most importantly the console could be sold at a hugely reduced cost”.
    In a statement, Sky said: “We have no plans to sell Xbox hardware as part of a Sky subscription. We have a longstanding partnership with Microsoft by which we distribute our content via Sky Go and NOW TV on Xbox. We look forward to continuing to work with them as part of our commitment to giving our customers more ways to watch Sky programming in addition to their Sky+ HD box. ”

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    Time Warner in China investment initiative
    By Colin Mann 09/06/2013
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    Time Warner Inc and China Media Capital, China’s leading investment fund focused on media and entertainment, have formed a strategic investment partnership. The news was revealed in the western Chinese city of Chengdu, where business leaders convened for the 2013 Fortune Global Forum. The partnership aims to capitalise on China’s rapidly expanding media sector as digital devices proliferate and China’s demand for high-quality content across multiple platforms rises.
    “This partnership with CMC and [Chinese media entrepreneur] Ruigang Li will give us a unique window into one of the world’s largest and fastest growing media and entertainment markets,” said Time Warner Chairman and CEO Jeff Bewkes. “Increasing our global presence is one of Time Warner’s strategic priorities and China is one of the most attractive territories in which we operate, but it is complex. This alliance will give all our businesses a savvy and accomplished partner as we strive to bring our leading brands and storytelling to people everywhere, across a wide range of devices.”
    “China’s media and entertainment industry is undergoing a profound change on various fronts including technology, creativity and commercialisation,” said Ruigang Li, Chairman of CMC, the pre-eminent investment platform in China dedicated to the media and entertainment sector. “We are pleased to forge this partnership with Time Warner to jointly explore innovative ways of creating premium content for the new generation of consumers at the age of Internet and mobile, which will further contribute to the dynamic industry development in China.”
    The Chinese media and entertainment market is among the largest and fastest growing in the world. Box office revenue is projected to reach $4.4 billion in 2013, and with an estimated 45 per cent compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2009 and 2013. Animation revenues are projected to reach $7.1 billion in 2013, with a 27 per cent CAGR over the same period, and online video revenues are projected to reach $2 billion in 2013 with a 64 per cent CAGR between 2009 and 2013.
    CMC Founding Chairman Ruigang Li founded CMC as China’s first media and entertainment-focused investment fund in 2010. CMC’s investment portfolio has participated in several investments and transactions including DreamWorks Animation’s Chinese joint venture and CMC’s acquisition of Star China from News Corporation. Li was previously the chief executive of Shanghai Media Group, where he was credited successfully transforming the Shanghai based provincial broadcaster SMG into one of China’s largest media conglomerates.

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    China wants Africa’s STB business
    By Chris Forrester 09/06/2013
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    Statements made in Nairobi by officials from Chinese pay-TV operator StarTimes Group suggest the broadcaster has the whole of sub-Saharan Africa in its sights as far as pay-TV and the receiver technology side of the business is concerned. A StarTimes-organised seminar heard on June 3 that the broadcaster had now signed up more than 2.5 million subscribers across Africa.
    StarTimes believes it has the right broadcasting model. Kenya, for example, is shortly to switch off its Nairobi analogue transmitter and StarTimes says it is targeting the city’s 1 million existing TV homes, each of which will have to invest either in a new TV set or in a converter box. StarTimes is selling low-cost boxes, which can be upgraded to subscription to its pay-TV bouquet for about $59 (Kenyan Shillings 4999).
    Moreover, the government is keen to see some progress as it estimates that to date only about 12,000 free-to-air terrestrial converter boxes have been sold in a nation of some 4 million TV homes.
    “On realising that there are insufficient non subscription based decoders in the market, we decided to introduce a free-to-air decoder thereby giving Kenyans a great variety to choose from,” StarTimes Media CEO Leo Lee says.
    Keny’s Communication Commission (CCK) says it has licensed around 20 free to air decoders, but sales have been slow when compared to around 200,000 pay-TV boxes which have sold.
    Fenella Ephraim Mukangara, Tanzania’s Minister of Information, Culture & Sports said Tanzania is teaming up with the StarTimes in a bid to accomplish the analogue switch-off June 2015 target made by ITU and initial projects have seen 23 per cent of its population enjoy digital TV.
    StarTimes Group sees itself as a pioneer in terms of TV. It has more than 7 million subscribers to its Chinese services, and is targeting Africa with pay-TV services. StarTimes started developing its African markets in 2002, and was issued the first digital TV operator license by Rwanda in 2007. Currently StarTimes has got licenses and registered companies in 10 African nations. The broadcaster’s operations network covers African, including Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, and the Central African Republic, Guinea and Kenya.
    Pang Xinxing, chairman of the Beijing-based company, noted only that a complete digital technology, and adequate financing for projects, are critically needed in African countries to help with the popularisation of its satellite projects. “The biggest challenge is the digitalization of the terminal, which [will replace] those analogue systems. Only by truly and completely switching off all the analogue system and upgrading facilities [can success be assured].”
    Their new Mission Statement is simple: “To provide every African family with affordable and enjoyable DTV”.

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    Spain’s TVE launches international HD channel

    The Spanish pubcaster RTVE is to strengthen its International TV service with the launch of a HDTV channel dedicated to TV series and films that would be added to its existing offer of the news channel Canal 24 Horas and the International version of TVE 1, TVE Internacional. This latter channel is distributed in four different signals: two for America, one for Europe and Africa and another for Asia.
    This is the first time RTVE will broadcast on HD for an International audience. The state-owned TV group is seeking to expand its presence above all in Latin America where TVE Internacional is reaching 80 per cent of pay-TV homes through its distibution via satellite, cable and IPTV platforms.

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    US ‘TV Everywhere’ less than half deployed

    According to The Diffusion Group (TDG), more than four years after the first public announcement of the cable industry’s ‘TV Everywhere’ (TVE) initiative, deployment to America’s multichannel TV subscribers remains at less than 50 per cent.
    TDG’s latest report details the availability of authenticated TVE content for the 14 leading US TV networks to subscribers of the 15 largest multichannel TV operators. On average, each of these networks is available via TVE to only 45 per cent of those operator’s pay-TV subscribers.
    According to Bill Niemeyer, TDG Senior Analyst and author of the new report, “TV Everywhere is arguably the best response that the multichannel TV operators and networks have to the competitive threat posed by online video services, including those from Netflix and Aereo. Despite this fact, TVE rollout has been disappointingly slow.”
    “Ironically,” notes Niemeyer, “the delay is not due to technology but rather business friction between TV networks and operators – the two parties who stand to benefit the most from a timely TVE rollout.”
    Niemeyer does acknowledge that some networks have seized the TVE opportunity, pointing out that HBO offers its programming online to authenticated subscribers of all top 15 MVPDs. On the other hand, three of the top 10 cable networks have yet to offer any type of TVE access to their subscribers. “The pay-TV industry needs to move now to conclude agreements and become fully engaged in the game with its online programming services.”

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    PwC: Digital half of all entertainment spend by 2017

    Consumer access to entertainment & media (E&M) content and experiences is being democratised by ever increasing access to the Internet and strong growth in the ownership of smart devices. According to PwC’s annual Global Entertainment and Media Outlook, even though traditional, non-digital media will continue to dominate E&M spending during the forecast period, growth will be concentrated in digital media platforms and consumption. Therefore, E&M companies are raising the bar in terms of customer insight and engagement, as well as business model and operating agility, as digital innovation continues to redefine the industry landscape.
    The Outlook forecasts that global E&M spending is expected to rise from $1.6 trillion in 2012 to $2.2 trillion by 2017, growing at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6 per cent. The US remains the largest E&M market, growing at 4.8 per cent CAGR reaching $632 billion in 2017, from $499 billion in 2012.
    Digital E&M spending, largely driven by widespread smart device ownership, is expected to account for 44 per cent of all spending in mature markets by 2017, which is almost double the level in 2008 and up from 34 per cent in 2012. Digital spending in the U.S. is expected to account for 43 per cent of all E&M spending in 2017, up from 31 per cent in 2012.
    “The E&M industry is undergoing a significant shift as digital disruption across every segment is accelerating and as digital media remains the clear driving force behind E&M revenues over the next five years,” said Ken Sharkey, PwC’s US entertainment, media & communications practice leader. “To drive growth and compete effectively in the future, E&M companies must invest in constant innovation that encompasses its products and services, operating and business models and, most importantly, focus on customer experience, understanding and engagement.”


 

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