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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Jacob Zuma launches SABC 24-hour news channel Rebecca Hawkes | 02-08-2013 A new 24-hour television news channel from South Africa's

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    Jacob Zuma launches SABC 24-hour news channel
    Rebecca Hawkes | 02-08-2013

    A new 24-hour television news channel from South Africa's state broadcaster has been officially unveiled by President Jacob Zuma.
    Speaking from the Johannesburg suburb Uitsaaisentrum, where the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) is headquartered, Zuma said diversified news broadcasting will help forward the constitutional rights of the country's citizens.
    Communications Minister Yunus Carrim added that although the news channel would be carried on South African satellite pay-TV platform DStv, the public broadcaster would remain independent.
    "The SABC must serve all of our people. The SABC is not meant to be elite ... It is the responsibility of the SABC to reduce the [information] divide," Carrim was quoted as saying by Biz-Community.
    While some have reservations about the channel's financial sustainability, he added that "such channels are a risk all over the world," reported SouthAfrica.info.
    The minister added that the state broadcaster can help nation-build in the sometimes fragile country, which will celebrate 20 years of democracy in April 2014.
    President Zuma added that he hoped the 24-hour news channel would showcase what "this beautiful country has achieved in recent years".
    The channel, which is expected to reach around 20 million viewers in Africa, is available on DStv channel 404.

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    Sony Six acquires wrestling TV rights for South Asia
    Rebecca Hawkes | 02-08-2013

    Total Nonstop Action (TNA) Wrestling is to be broadcast across the Indian subcontinent by sports channel Sony Six each week, following a rights agreement sealed with parent company Multi Screen Media (MSM).
    The broadcasting deal includes a range of TNA programming, including Impact Wrestling, Xplosion, Greatest Matches and Unfinished Business, along with four pay-per-view programmes and eight specials throughout the year.
    "Sony Six will now offer fans more than 500 hours of original wrestling content every year. TNA Wrestling is a global phenomenon, producing exclusive entertainment for more than five million viewers in 14 languages each week and seen in more than 120 countries across the world. We at Sony Six look forward to building on this fascinating sport in the years to come," said NP Singh, chief operating officer, MSM.
    Man Jit Singh, CEO, MSM added: "Wrestling is considered one of the ancient sports in the world, and India with 'kushti' has a storied tradition in wrestling. India's recent success in international wrestling has attracted the youth in India and also captured the imagination and interest of audiences across the country."

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    Latin America improves its telecoms capacity
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 02-08-2013

    Latin America is predicted as being one of the fastest growing regions worldwide over the coming years, and major growth is also expected in its telecoms market.
    Two of the latest technical moves in the region point to the great expectations Latin America is raising among the world's telcos: América Móvil is connecting a submarine cable which will multiply by 50 the current international data capacity, and Norwegian Appear TV is to launch a new cable headend for TV operators.
    América Móvil's cable was connected to land through the Colombia city of Cartagena. The infrastructure is 17,500km long and is going to connect seven countries through 11 different points in North, Central and South America. The Mexican company is aiming to start using the cable in 2014, after an investment of nearly $200 million.
    Regarding Appear TV, the Nordic company will focus on the needs generated by the transition to digital which is being carried out in most of the region's countries. The provider of broadcast services will introduce a cable headend which will make its debut at the ABTA 2013 Expo & Conference in Brazil next week.
    "This headend is designed from the ground up to make life as simple as possible for Latin America's cable operators and do it at a fixed cost per channel while still offering the latest technologies," said Carl Walter Holst, Appear TV's CEO. The solution will be directly marketed to the TV operators.

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    SpotXchange expands into Spain
    Parent Category: News | 03-08-2013

    As part of a general expansion into Europe, the SpotXchange global marketplace of video ad inventory has expanded into Spain with the appointment of Ana Garcia as Business Development Director for Spain.
    The SpotXchange auction-based platform is designed to enables publishers to maximise the value of their inventory by connecting with advertisers in a real-time bidding environment. It offers a platform for publishers to monetise video through its programmatic platform and the ability to set up a private exchange between publishers and their advertisers.
    The company’s new business development director has worked in the Spanish online advertising industry for over twelve years in a number of leading companies including Adpepper, Advertising.com, Yahoo! and CPX Interactive. “Online video is such a big growth area in this market,” Garcia said. “Throughout my career I have been involved in the creation and development of new businesses and taking products from beginning to launch to the market and stabilisation. I’m really excited to be bringing these experiences to SpotXchange.”
    Adding his commenting on the appointment, Andrew Moore, European Managing Director of SpotXchange, said: “We are continuing to build our presence across Europe as online video advertising grows. Having examined the Spanish market, we feel the Spanish publishers are progressive and open to working in new ways and embracing new technologies. I am excited to welcome Ana to SpotXchange.”

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    Amazon Instant Video wins Emmy Award
    Parent Category: News | 03-08-2013

    The US National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is to recognise Amazon Instant Video with a 2013 Technology & Engineering Emmy Award for its work on personalised recommendation engines for video discovery.
    Amazon Instant Video is receiving its maker’s first ever Emmy Award for its development of tools and algorithms that enable customers to find and discover videos that cater to their tastes and preferences, creating unique and personalised entertainment experiences.
    The online video solution’s discovery facilities allow viewers to find relevant films and TV shows through novel classifications based on mood and topic, distinctively ordered by their unique viewing habits and likes.
    Amazon adds that its video recommendation technology also includes unique tools such as genre-based recommendations, based on customers’ favourite categories, determined by their viewing history, an ‘also watched’ feature which uses aggregate viewing behaviour as a predictor of what customers will enjoy and a ‘your store’ where customers receive personalised movie and TV recommendations based on their tastes and preferences.
    “Our goal is to give customers the best possible movie and TV watching experience. That means both enabling customers to find exactly what they’re looking for and helping them discover new TV shows and movies in a personalised way,” commented Bill Carr, vice president of music and video for Amazon. “We’ve made it effortless to discover new content they’ll love, and we will continue to innovate on behalf of our customers to make it even easier and more enjoyable to explore all of the great movies and TV shows on Amazon.”

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    BBC, Sky join UK Ultra HD forum
    Editor | 03-08-2013

    Learning perhaps from the failure of 3DTV, the UK’s biggest free-to-air and pay-TV operators have come together under the UK UHD Forum.
    Set up by the Digital TV Group (DTG), the industry association for digital television in the UK, the new forum will coordinate UK requirements to build a knowledge base for the future interoperability of Ultra HD just as 4KTV sets become available, and will work hand-in-hand with FAME — the Forum for Advanced Media in Europe, an initiative led by the EBU and DIF, the Digital Interoperability Forum and supported by the European Commission and other European standard organisations.
    The DTG will also work with broadcasters and the Digital Production Partnership to examine whether there is a requirement for a UK Ultra HD profile. Indeed it will be co-chaired by Chris Johns, chief engineer, broadcast strategy at BSkyB and Andy Quested, the BBC’s head of technology for BBC HD and Ultra HD.
    “This is a real opportunity to reinvigorate the market and through collaboration generate the greatest economic value for the UK,” commented Richard Lindsay-Davies, director general of the DTG. “In launching the UK UHD Forum, the DTG is bringing together all relevant stakeholders to work towards the managed delivery of interoperable Ultra HD services, networks and devices.”

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    Liberty posts loss but customer numbers boosted by Virgin deal
    August 4, 2013


    Liberty Global logoLiberty Global reported a net loss of US$12 million (€9.09 million) in its second quarter and a drop in operating income, though received a customer boost thanks to its recent acquisition of Virgin Media.

    Liberty said it had a 41% or 13.7 million year-on-year increase in revenue generating units (RGUs), largely driven by the acquisition of Virgin Media in June 2013 and by 1.3 million organic subscriber additions during the last twelve months.

    Commenting on the results, Liberty Global president and CEO Mike Fries said: “The highlight of our second quarter was the successful acquisition of Virgin Media. This transaction marks an important milestone in our efforts to consolidate what remains a very fragmented European cable market. Virgin Media significantly enhances both the scale of our business and our levered equity growth strategy.”

    At the end of June Liberty provided 24.5 million unique customers with 47.5 million services. These consisted of 21.9 million video, 13.9 million broadband internet and 11.8 million telephony subscriptions. Some 13.5 million customers, or 55% of its customer base, subscribed to more than one product.

    On an organic basis, Liberty said it added 191,000 RGUs in Q2, mainly driven by subscriber growth in Germany, where it added 129,000. In the “highly competitive” Dutch market, however, it lost 7,000 RGUs.

    Liberty said that it’s next-generation web-connected TV service, Horizon TV, now has more than 270,000 subscribers in the Dutch and Swiss markets as of the end of July.

    “We will continue to grow our Horizon TV reach with roll-outs planned for Ireland and Germany in the coming weeks. In addition, we finished the second quarter with 1.7 million TiVo subscribers in the UK,” Liberty said.

    The firm’s US$12 million the loss compared to a net profit of US$702 million for the same period last year when its results were boosted by a US$924 million gain on the disposition of its interest in Australian telco Austar.

    Operating income was US$445 million in the quarter, down 7% year-on-year, though Liberty said that the impacts of the Virgin Media deal “more than offset operating cash flow during the three-month period.” Consolidated revenue was up by US$637 million year-on-year to US$3.16 billion.

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    Kit Digital launches legal action against Utd. by Content
    August 4, 2013


    Kit Digital LogoKit Digital has launched legal action against Utd. by Content, formerly known as Content Solutions International, claiming breach of contract over the latter’s US$18.8 million buyout of Kit Digital’s content solutions business last year.

    In June 2012, Content Solutions International agreed to buy Kit’s content solutions arm in a deal that comprised of an initial cash payment of US$1.0 million and a US$17.8 million multi-year earn-out payment obligation based on revenue achieved.

    However, Kit alleges that since Content Solutions changed its name to Utd. by Content in January 2013, it has breached its contract. Kit said it is now seeking the return of the asset, alleging that Utd. by Content has not made relevant payments.

    “We know that Utd. by Content has customers and is generating revenue. We also know that Utd. by Content is choosing to ignore its obligation to pay Kit Digital a percentage of its revenue as an earn-out payment,” said Fabrice Hamaide, Kit Digital’s Chief Financial Officer.

    “When we sold [Utd. by Content CEO] Petr Stránský our content solutions business, he agreed to pay for it. The complaint we filed today seeks to reverse the transaction, effectively returning the assets of utd. by content to KIT digital since none of the promised US$17.8 million in earn-out payments have been made.”

    Kit Digital said in April that it had agreed to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in the US, in a move to recapitalise the company put its core operating into newly formed group called Piksel.

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    BSkyB and BBC to lead UK Ultra HD forum
    August 4, 2013


    DTGRepresentatives from BSkyB and the BBC will co-chair a new industry group, designed to help introduce and promote Ultra HD TV in the UK.

    Industry association the Digital TV Group (DTG) launched the new UK UHD Forum, which will be co-chaired by Chris Johns, chief engineer, broadcast strategy at BSkyB and Andy Quested, the BBC’s head of technology for BBC HD and UHDTV.

    The group will co-ordinate UK requirements to build a knowledge base for the future interoperability of Ultra HD, the DTG said. It will also work with the Forum for Advanced Media in Europe (FAME) and other European standard organisations, while the Digital TV Group will work with broadcasters and the Digital Production Partnership to examine whether there is a requirement for a UK Ultra HD.

    “It is vital that the technology step-change demanded by Ultra HD be fully understood prior to any implementation of an ‘Ultra-HD Ready’ logo, to avoid the confusion still experienced by consumers to this day over ‘HD Ready’,” according to the DTG.

    Richard Lindsay-Davies, Director General of the DTG added: “This is a real opportunity to re-invigorate the market and through collaboration generate the greatest economic value for the UK. In launching the UK UHD-Forum, the DTG is bringing together all relevant stakeholders to work towards the managed delivery of interoperable Ultra-HD services, networks and devices.”

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    Virgin Media adding 14,000 TiVo customers per week
    August 4, 2013


    Virgin Media said that 44% of its TV customers have now opted to take its TiVo DVR service, and that it is adding an average of almost 14,000 TiVo customers per week.

    Announcing its second quarter results, the UK cable operator, which was recently acquired by Liberty Global, said that it added 155,000 TiVo subscribers in Q2, resulting in 1.7 million of Virgin Media’s 3.8 million TV subscribers now taking the service.

    The firm also added 249,000 super-fast broadband customers in the quarter, taking this figure to 2.8 million, or 64% of TiVo’s 4.3 million broadband subscribers. Over the last year, total subscriptions for cable services were up 169,000 to 12.2 million.

    “In this past year we’ve added TiVo subscribers at an average of almost 14,000 each week and already 44% of all our TV customers are paying extra for what we believe is the best way to watch television,” said Virgin Media CEO Tom Mockridge.

    “Taking that experience onto other devices and out of the home, Virgin TV Anywhere now offers more channels to watch online than any other UK pay-TV company. Together these services are transforming how people expect to be entertained.”

    Revenue for the three months ending June 30, 2013, came in at £1,027 million (€1,178 million), consistent with the same period last year. Operating income was £66.7 million, compared to £179.6 million last year.


 

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