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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

ViewCast and Variosystems ink strategic partnership Parent Category: News | 28-08-2013 ViewCast, which supports the capture and delivery of video

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    ViewCast and Variosystems ink strategic partnership
    Parent Category: News | 28-08-2013

    ViewCast, which supports the capture and delivery of video to broadband and mobile networks, has signed a Letter of Intent to form a strategic alliance with Variosystems Inc, a Texas and Switzerland-based global electronics contract manufacturer.
    Variosystems will provide financial and other resources to ViewCast and carry out administrative and engineering services as well as manufacturing of a large number of ViewCast products, while ViewCast personnel will continue to focus on marketing and sales.
    "While our business may have been negatively impacted by a number of external factors beyond our control, there are a number of factors we can control that we believe can positively impact our business," said Lance E.L. Ouellette, ViewCast's recently appointed president, CEO and chairman of the board. Going forward, it is imperative that the company aggressively pursues internal operational efficiency and absolutely minimise fixed operational costs," Ouellette said. "Operational efficiency is a significant element of the value proposition we offer our channel partners and the end users of our products, and now is the time to position ViewCast to greatly increase the efficiency of its operations."
    Peter Ermish, general manager of Variosystems, noted that Variosystems is stepping up to help ViewCast stabilise its operations and reduce costs with a goal of returning ViewCast to future growth and profitability.
    "We are moving in a direction that we believe will make ViewCast a more viable company going forward," Ermish said. "We will provide management, engineering and back office administration, pro bono. We do about 90% of the ViewCast manufacturing already so we are familiar with their products and their team and are currently producing ViewCast products for shipment."

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    Telefonica Czech Republic adds interactivity to IPTV
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    helle Clancy | 28-08-2013

    Telefonica Czech Republic has selected Eagle Kingdom Technologies (EKT) to supply an interactive STB solution for IPTV and power a high definition graphical user interface.
    "EKT has always been about delivering innovative STB solutions. The Telefonica project really brings together the power of our Entropic-based hardware with the robustness and flexibility of our solidTV middleware," said Christof Winker, general manager of the EKT solidTV group. "We really look forward to bringing a fully managed box with the latest in HTML5-compliant browser capabilities, Smooth Streaming and PlayReady to Telefonica. Combining some of our unique features such as solidUpdater, solidPlayer and solidBrowser, Telefonica users can enjoy a truly future-ready product."
    Tomas Dratva, manager of video services, Telefonica Czech Republic, added: "We have been very diligent in selecting a partner for our IPTV (O2TV) next-generation upgrade in the Czech region. The key selection criteria were quality of the product accompanied with professional level of the middleware support service, which together will provide best grade of Telefonica's user experience whilst keeping cost under control. The combination of EKT with the nangu.TV IPTV platform has fulfilled our expectation and we are keen to start the new era of our O2TV in the Czech market."

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    ATSC lines up proposals for ATSC 3.0 broadcast standard
    Parent Category: News | 28-08-2013

    The Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC) has received ten initial proposals from 19 organisations for the Physical Layer of the new ATSC 3.0 broadcast television standard. ATSC 3.0 is geared to support higher capacity to deliver Ultra High Definition (Ultra HD) services, better reception on mobile devices and improved efficiency.
    "As technology continues to advance, the ATSC and its members are always looking to the horizon," said ATSC president Mark Richer. "Internet technology now permeates the consumer experience and mobility has become a requirement. With the next generation of television standards, we want to take advantage of advances in compression, transmission and other technologies that will keep millions of people informed and entertained through broadcasting's inherently efficient one-to-many architecture."
    Detailed proposals are due on 27 September. Initial proposals for the ATSC 3.0 physical layer have been submitted by: Coherent Logix and Sinclair Broadcast Group (SBG); Communications Research Centre (CRC) and Electronics & Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI); Digital Video Broadcasting Project (DVB); LG Electronics, Zenith and Harris Broadcast; Allen Limberg; National Engineering Research Center of Digital Television (NERC), Shanghai Jiao Tong University (SJTU), Shanghai Advance Research Institute (SARI) and Bell Labs, Alcatel-Lucent; Power Broadcasting; Qualcomm and Ericsson; Samsung and Sony; and Technicolor.

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    Amazon green-lights inventor-themed kids' pilot
    Michelle Clancy | 28-08-2013

    Amazon Studios, the original movie and series production arm of Amazon.com, is green-lighting a pilot for the original children's series Maker Shack Agency, produced by Electus Studios.
    Maker Shack Agency follows the exploits of 13-year-old inventor Angus Wolfe, aka Wolfie, and his two best friends and fellow 'makers', Jo and Merle, in the hardscrabble town of Akron, Ohio. These three teenage thinkers and tinkerers use all the branches of science and personal ingenuity to solve their client's problems by making a new invention every episode. Together, they make people's lives better by coming up with science and technology-inspired inventions for their various problems.
    "We are incredibly excited for our first initiative with Amazon and we look forward to inspiring the next generation of makers," said Drew Buckley, COO and head of digital for Electus. "With Maker Shack Agency, we hope to inspire kids to think about new and different ways to solve life's problems and to never be afraid of failure — as Wolfie always says, 'fail forward.'"
    The production crew from Maker Shack Agency will team up with research and development company Applied Minds and their scientists, engineers and programmers to design gadgets that will be featured in the show to inspire a new generation of inventors.
    Earlier in the summer Amazon Studios announced five new kids' pilots including Gortimer Gibbon's Life on Normal Street, Grid Smasher, Hard-Boiled Eggheads, The Jo B. & G. Raff Show and Wishenpoof! The pilots will be available on Amazon Instant Video in early 2014 for all customers to watch and provide feedback.
    Amazon Studios' first set of pilots launched in April of 2013 with eight comedy pilots and six kids' pilots. Of the 14 pilots, Alpha House, Betas, Annebots, Creative Galaxy and Tumble Leaf were chosen, with the help of customer feedback, to be produced as series. The shows will stream on Prime Instant Video later this year and in early 2014.

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    Sportsman Channel selects Interra for quality control
    Michele Clancy | 29-08-2013

    Sportsman Channel, which is devoted to outdoor enthusiasts in the United States, has selected Interra Systems' Baton platform as its file-based quality control (QC) solution, assuring content quality of its sports video for broadcast.
    "We are an outdoor lifestyle network that features a growing line-up of exclusive programming focused on the lifestyle of American sportsmen and sportswomen," said Don Hertz, manager of video operations at Sportsman Channel. "Sportsman Channel delivers entertaining and educational programming and therefore content quality becomes very important to continue to grow our distribution and viewership. Adopting a file-based QC solution was a natural progression in this direction. Interra's Baton offers us the best automated, file-based QC to handle our diverse content," he explained.
    Added Brad Lilian, sales director at Interra Systems: "As an industry standard in file-based QC, Baton offers the best range of format support, quality checks and verification options. The adoption of Baton by an exclusive sports channel confirms Baton as the file-based QC of choice for media companies globally. We are very excited to work with Sportsman Channel and look forward to meeting their QC needs."

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    LG embeds Gracenote technology within smart TV interface
    Editor | 29-08-2013

    As connected TV competition hots up among the CE giants, LG Electronics (LG) has selected Gracenote to power the TV bouquet service in its latest CINEMA 3D Smart TV product line.
    Gracenote’s eyeQ technology will be deployed by LG to provide TV schedules and listings, movie and TV show descriptive metadata, as well as Cover Art and images to help users of its On Now service. On Now will be offered as a software update to all LG Smart TVs in UK and Spain this summer with other European countries slated for later in the year.
    eyeQ features TV listings for more than 30 countries, up to 21 days of listings coverage and is said to be able to offer metadata for more than a million films and TV programmes. Gracenote will also provide visual images to enhance the On Now graphical interface, displaying photos of cast and crew, including popular actresses, actors and filmmakers. In combination with TV and film Cover Art from the Gracenote database, viewers will be able to quickly navigate which programmes to watch.
    “For Smart TVs to truly make an impact among consumers, the experience has to evolve to make it easy for viewers to find the shows they love and also discover new programmes to watch,” said Stephen White, president, Gracenote. “LG is now ahead of the curve in terms of the Smart TV user experience, incorporating descriptive data and rich images to help simplify discovery.”

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    Mobile makes mainstream march into TV viewing habits
    Joseph O'Halloran | 29-08-2013

    New research from the Ericsson ConsumerLab has revealed place-shifting as a mainstream activity with almost three-quarter of those surveyed watching TV and video on mobile devices each week.
    Fundamentally the survey revealed that traditional linear TV and scheduled broadcast viewing has remained steady and will continue to do so. The survey data showed that 83% of people watch traditional media more than weekly, a figure that has not changed over the last two years despite the increased availability of alternative devices. By contrast the data also showed that consumption of physical media.
    In addition to 72% using a mobile device for watching TV, the survey found that a similar percentage multitask by using mobile devices while watching TV. Just over two-fifths watch TV on mobile devices outside the home. Over half of the respondents state that their computer and internet connection are integral parts of their TV and video consumption habits.
    In addition to an increase of "place-shifted viewing by watching one piece of content across several locations and times, Ericsson ConsumerLab also revealed a change in on-demand habits. On-demand is now firmly established but the type of on-demand viewing is evolving with viewing of recorded broadcast TV and downloaded movies and shows dropping significantly.
    Consumption of streamed on-demand/time shifted TV and video, including YouTube has remained constant, with just over there fifths partaking in this activity. Interestingly on-demand is breaching out across the older age demographics. The survey found an 18% increase in more than weekly on-demand viewing since 2011 among people aged 55-59.
    Commenting on the trends revealed by the latest version of the ConsumerLab report also Anders Erlandsson, Senior Researcher at Ericsson ConsumerLab, said: "When the TV industry began talking about mobile TV, everyone assumed it was going to consist mainly of professionally-made shorter video clips. Now, we see a really interesting twist on that story. People are indeed watching shorter video sessions, but they create the video clips themselves by pausing and resuming full-length TV shows and movies whenever it suits them. We also noticed that there is a continuing re-definition of television and video among consumers.”

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    Nickelodeon set to bring back Power Rangers, Digimon Fusion to autumn line-up
    Michelle Clancy | 29-08-2013

    Saban's Power Rangers Megaforce will return with all-new episodes on Saturday, 7 September followed by the season premiere of the all-new Digimon Fusion, on Nickelodeon.
    "Fans have eagerly been awaiting new episodes of Power Rangers Megaforce, and we're excited to bring them back as we launch another one of our highly anticipated television properties, Digimon Fusion," said Elie Dekel, president of Saban Brands. "The back-to-back programming will be filled with tons of action, adventure and fun. The fans are in for a real treat."
    The return of new episodes of Power Rangers Megaforce continues the celebration of the franchise's 20th anniversary since the original series, Saban's Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, first aired on television in 1993.
    Power Rangers Megaforce picks up when a shadow-stealing monster attacks, and the Megaforce Rangers must teach Robo Knight the power of teamwork in order to defeat him.
    Digimon Fusion marks the sixth instalment of the Digimon franchise, which Saban Brands re-acquired in 2012. The new Digimon Fusion series follows Mikey, a human boy, who is transported into the digital realm and must team up with his new Digimon or Digital Monster friends before their world is deleted once and for all. New fusion powers allow Digimon to combine and fuse their abilities to create endless battle possibilities. Unleashing countless Digimon combinations, Digimon Fusion takes today's tech-savvy kids inside an adventure-packed digital world, where the heroes' courage is matched only by the fusion of their teamwork, loyalty and humour.

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    Maidstone taps Miranda for broadcast output
    Michelle Clancy | 29-08-2013

    Maidstone Studios, the UK's largest independent TV studio complex, has installed Miranda routers, control, multi-viewers and cross-conversion technology as part of a major HD upgrade.
    Included in the package are two NVISION 8140 hybrid routers, dual NVISION 9000 control systems, two sets of Densit 3 frames populated with multiple Miranda Kaleido-Modular multi-viewer cards and the XVP-3901 3Gbps/HD/SD up, down and cross-conversion platform.
    The Miranda products were installed in two of Maidstone's five studios within nine days of the order, which included a tight, three-week timeframe to complete the overall upgrade. Three days after the install, a Maidstone client was actively using the new system to record a pilot programme, the company said.
    "Miranda was highly proactive and provided an across-the-board solution to our requirements," said Maidstone Studios' CEO Rowland Kinch. "The tight timescale meant that the transition had to be seamless and the professional and timely response by Miranda enabled us to achieve our goals and get the studio back in operation as scheduled."
    Micky Edwards, Miranda's vice president of sales in EMEA, added: "Maidstone Studios has an enviable reputation as a live HD and SD broadcast facility. With our technology at the heart of its five state-of-the-art studios they can efficiently, confidently and cost-effectively continue to produce some of the UK's premier programming."

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    Colombia's ETB future OTT IPTV platform to broadcast Win Sports
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 29-08-2013
    Empresa de Telecomunicaciones de Bogotá (ETB) will exclusively bring the Colombian channel Win Sports to its new IPTV and over-the-top (OTT) platform, expected to be launched in December.
    Win Sports broadcasts sporting events 24/7 and has recently been the Colombian channel with the greatest growth.
    "Our interactive TV platform project points out that we are solid and profitable company, and counting on Win Sports is a triumph, a great goal for our customers," said Saúl Kattan Cohen, ETB's president. The sports channel has been broadcast through Ingelcom's DTH service, a cable operator of Cúcuta city, from which ETB bought a pay-TV broadcasting licence.
    The channel bases its success on showing national football matches, the basketball league and indoor football, all commentated by recognised Colombian journalists. The programming also includes boxing, swimming and motor racing, as well as many other programmes which explore the less well known sides of sporting celebrities.
    ETB has been increasing its fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network and will release its hybrid TV platform (IPTV and OTT services) in December. Win Sports will be exclusive to ETB's service and won't be available on Une, Claro or Movistar's pay-TV platforms.


 

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