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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Argentina to launch ARSAT-1 this summer Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 13-02-2014 Argentina's Centro de Ensayos de Alta Tecnología has concluded

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    Argentina to launch ARSAT-1 this summer
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 13-02-2014
    Argentina's Centro de Ensayos de Alta Tecnología has concluded the latest environmental tests for the satellite ARSAT-1, which aims to improve TV and Internet coverage in the country. The satellite is scheduled to be launched by the beginning of July.
    ARSAT-1 is now being tested in order to validate the satellite's resistance during launch. After this, the radio frequency test will start to measure the useful telecoms space for TV and Internet services.
    "We are very close from the final goal of launching a 100% Argentinian satellite, which will bring autonomy to the country's telecoms," said Julio De Vido, Minister of Planning and Public Investment.
    ARSAT-1's main goal is to reach the remote areas of Argentina which are not profitable for private operators and therefore are out of coverage. In addition, it will bring telecom services to the Antarctica bases.
    The satellite will be finished and tested in Argentina in May before being taken to the Kourou Space Centre where it will be placed on an Ariane-5 rocket to be launched during the first week of July.
    ARSAT-2 is already being developed and will start testing in September. The second national satellite is due to be launched in summer 2015.

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    Comcast reported on verge of $45BN TWC acquisition
    Editor | 13-02-2014
    The end game of the saga as to who will buy leading US cableco Time Warner Cable looks in sight with Comcast widely reported as on the verge of snapping up the company in a deal valued at $45.2 billon.
    Neither TWC or Comcast has officially confirmed the reports of a deal, but by bringing TWC into its fold Comcast would add 12 million customers to its current video service subscriber base of 22 million, resulting in around 30% of the US pay-TV market. This would be around ten million customers more than second placed pay-TV firm DirecTV even though Comcast would likely divest around three million subscribers.
    In addition to the customer base, TWC has the added advantage of serving key markets in particular New York City, and has to date large avoided the costly retrans battles that have dented the US pay-TV arena of late.
    The deal would be a bitter blow to number four US cableco Charter Communications which since November 2013 has been trying to flex its backing from major shareholder John Malone to extend its portfolio. Charter’s advances have been rebuffed strongly by TWC’s management with CEO Rob Marcus particularly adamant that Charter’s offers came nowhere near recognising the value of TWC. Indeed in January 2014 TWC condemned Charter’s bids as “grossly inadequate” and a “non-starter” that substantially undervalued the firm. Even as recently as a week ago, one of TWC’s largest investors, T Rowe Price, was urging TWC management to take a second look at Charter.

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    DirecTV to employ HD, multiscreen for World Cup
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 13-02-2014
    DirecTV will offer Brazil's 64 World Cup matches live and in HD and available for every connected device. The satellite network will complete the digital experience with access to live statistics and interactive videos for every match through its own mobile app.
    DirecTV will broadcast live competition coverage on computers, tablets and smartphones. All the World Cup matches will be broadcast live, but will be also available on-demand later, being downloadable via the DirecTV app.
    "As sports fans, we wanted to offer a TV package that is unmatched in the industry," said Atul Bansal, senior director of new media for DirecTV PanAmericana. "By offering the greatest show on earth accompanied by the latest digital technology, we are fulfilling our commitment to deliver a superior entertainment experience to our viewers. We are also extending our coverage to multiscreen so that our viewers can access every minute of this championship from their computers, smartphones, tablets, and of course, through their TV sets."
    Through an app, DirecTV will provide up to six simultaneous displays, making it possible to see every detail of the team match-ups. Displays include the main image, the tactical camera, views of both teams as well as the playing field for each team. To deliver this coverage, up to 24 cameras will be videotaping throughout each stage of game play.
    The app for the World Cup will be available for Android and iOS by the beginning of June for DirecTV subscribers in Argentina, Colombia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.

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    Paramount Channel goes live on French mobile devices
    Pascale Paoli-Lebailly |13-02-2014
    Viacom International Media Networks France has updated its Paramount Channel mobile app to enable viewers to receive a live stream of the channel 24/7 on smartphones and tablets.
    The new version is already available from the AppStore (iPhone/iPad) and Google Play (smartphones and Android tablets).
    The subscription fees for the service range from €3.59 a month to €19.99 for a year.
    The app now offers a complete service with TV, video, radio and EPG.
    With the move, the group aims to ensure a full continuity of its service across the pay-TV market, complementing traditional pay-TV and multiscreen satellite, cable and IPTV offerings.

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    Vodafone set to up ONO offer to €8.5BN
    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 16-02-2014
    With ONO very much in play and with bids from media giants already tabled, Vodafone is reportedly upping its offer to buy the Spanish cable firm to €8.5 billion.
    Only days ago, according to analyst firm Renta 4, ONO's board met to discuss its plans to go public without even addressing takeover bids. Renta 4 analysts have interpreted this as a light rejection of an initial offer of around €7 billion from the UK telco which is awash with cash after Verizon Communications bought out its 50% share of Verizon Wireless for £80 billon.
    Acquiring ONO would see Vodafone increase its broadband market share in Spain from the current 7.5% to 21%.
    In the meantime, ONO is staying on track to go public. According to the company, its plan to launch on the stock market is the group's No 1 priority and will be approved by stakeholders in their next meeting on 13 March 2014.
    ONO leads the Spanish cable market with nearly one million TV subscriptions, more than 1.5 million Internet customers, 1.8 telephony customers and 1 million mobile subscribers. Its fibre network reaches more than seven million homes throughout the country.

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    TV panel market declines in January 2014
    Editor | 17-02-2014
    2014 has not started auspiciously for the TV manufacturing industry with the latest WitsView survey showing a 13% month-on-month fall in large panel shipments.
    The display research division of the global intelligence provider TrendForce found that there were in total 64.07 million unit shipments in January 2014, with most makers’ panel shipments for January showing drops apart from only SDC, BOE, and Sharp. LCD TV shipments amounted to 17.41 million units in January 2014, dipping 12% MoM.
    Despite the huge popularity of Apple’s iPad and the Samsung equivalents which provided a huge spike in finished device shipments towards the end of 2013, tablet panels showed a 20% monthly drop for January 2014. WitsView says that after a restocking peak in Q4’13, brands including Apple, Amazon, Google entered the inventory-adjustment phase and white-box brands’ demand weakened leading to total panel shipments of 19.34 million units.
    Looking to the future, the analyst expects demand in February to soften constantly for all panel applications and the overall large-sized panel shipment will stumble 10%. The TV panel is forecast to continue to decline 5% while tablet panel shipments are set to suffer another 20% decline.
    Taking a longer view, WitsView senior research manager Jeffy Chen indicated that the future could be brighter for 4KTV products. He said: “The [4K2K panel proportion] shipment proportion will continue to rise with the emerging demand for the 1 May holidays in China, and diverse makers’ competition will also deepen the panel price cuts, which is positive to promote the mid-sized 4K2K TVs.”

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    Farncombe claims testing success in 2013
    Editor | 17-02-2014
    Media technology services provider Farncombe is heralding 2013 as a success, outstripping expectations for its flagship consumer device testing systems.
    The company has revealed that it has shipped 23 OpenTest automated consumer device testing systems in the last 12 months. Worldwide customers include pay-TV operators and CPE manufacturers.
    “OpenTest has far exceeded our original expectations,” explained Gary Marshall, managing partner for engineering services at Farncombe. “Our policy of low pricing, partnering with customers to determine strategy and enhancing support services has resulted in positive feedback from existing and new customers around the world.”
    OpenTest offers features such as video analysis, motion detection, region comparison, and optical character recognition (OCR) to replace the need for manual recognition and verification. Customers can integrate OpenTest with their own defect management, continuous integration and management reporting systems.
    As it reported its strong 2013, Farncombe also unveiled OpenTest version 4 which features an unlimited audio and video recording function that allows customers to record the AV outputs from simultaneous tests and keep a record of results.

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    TrueVisions taps Elemental to drive multiscreen premium pay-TV content
    Editor | 17-02-2014
    Leading Thai cableco and pay-TV provider TrueVisions has engaged Elemental Technologies to drive an expansion of its premium high definition (HD) and multiscreen services.
    TrueVisions has approximately two million subscribers, and is deploying technology from the software-based video solutions provider for video processing and delivery of more than 60 channels, a great many of which are available in HDTV.
    Elemental is also powering the TrueVisions Anywhere multiscreen service, which enables customers to view content on any mobile device and to personalise their experience with functions including two-hour time-shift, two-day catch-up and on-demand access.
    “TrueVisions places a premium on delivering the best and most varied content along with a high quality viewer experience,” said Vichai Sernvongsat, CTO of TrueVisions. “Market-leading video processing solutions from Elemental play a vital role in our ability to provide such service today, while its proven path towards real-time 4KTV/HEVC will help us plan for the future.”

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    Netflix swoops for new Star Wars rights
    Editor | 17-02-2014
    May the force and the OTT be with you: Netflix is to debut of the sixth and final season of the series Star Wars: The Clone Wars exclusively to US and Canadian members from 7 March 2014.
    As part of its multi-year agreement with The Galactic Republic, Disney/ABC Television Group and Lucasfilm, the over the top leader will also air the entire Star Wars: The Clone Wars saga, which includes several director’s cut episodes never seen on TV as well as the feature film.
    The deal makes Netflix the exclusive subscription service for the entire Star Wars: The Clone Wars. By airing what is also known as The Lost Missions, Netflix is breaking new ground for making Star Wars content available to streaming members.
    “Stars Wars is one of the most iconic franchises of all time and this series joins a long line of Disney content that Netflix members are and will continue to enjoy for years to come,” commented Ted Sarandos, Netflix chief content officer. “The Clone Wars marks an important moment as Netflix welcomes more and more first-run content from The Walt Disney Company and its subsidiaries.”

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    YuMe beefs up management for programmatic sales
    Parent Category: News | 17-02-2014
    As it continues to invest in additional video brand advertising distribution channels, digital video brand advertising solutions provider YuMe has appointed Matt Arkin as its new vice president of programmatic sales.
    Arkin and his team will be tasked with selling directly to trading desks at media agencies and large brand advertisers for whom YuMe believes it can provide more efficiency and reach across all platforms.
    The new executive brings more than two decades of digital media leadership experience to YuMe and was most recently Chief Revenue Officer of Federated Media Publishing, where he brought to market a programmatic brand extension.
    Commenting on his new role, Arkin said: “Developing YuMe’s trading desk solutions will complement a successful direct sales model, offering brand advertisers an additional method to achieve efficiency, accuracy and massive scale with multi-screen and brand-safe inventory for their video advertising campaigns.”


 

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