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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

BesTV, Microsoft to launch Xbox One in China Rebecca Hawkes | 02-05-2014 Microsoft's Xbox One is set to launch in

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    BesTV, Microsoft to launch Xbox One in China

    Rebecca Hawkes | 02-05-2014

    Microsoft's Xbox One is set to launch in China in September after a 14 year-long ban on entertainment consoles due to concerns for children's mental wellbeing.

    It is thought the ban is being lifted because Xbox One enables not only video gaming, but also entertainment, online education and fitness.

    "Launching Xbox One in China is a significant milestone for us and for the industry, and it's a step forward in our vision to deliver the best games and entertainment experiences to more fans around the world," said Yusuf Mehdi, chief marketing and strategy officer for Xbox.

    The Shanghai Media Group subsidiary BesTV will work with Microsoft – with whom it already has a joint venture called E-Home Entertainment – to launch the console. BesTV has access to local content, a large number of existing IPTV users, and marketing and distribution expertise in China.

    Microsoft's Enwei Xie will lead Xbox China as general manager, who will be working to lure a potential 500 million gamers to purchase the console.

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    StarTimes to expand Kenyan DTT service

    Rebecca Hawkes | 02-05-2014

    Chinese pay-TV provider StarTimes is expanding its digital terrestrial television (DTT) service in Kenya to reach 80% of the population by the end of 2014.

    "StarTimes digital television service will be available in Machakos, Migori, Trans-Nzoia, Laikipia and Muranga counties, raising the number with the company's digital television access to over 20 counties," the company said in a statement.

    Subscribers in the additional five counties will be able to access both the pay-TV and free-to-air digital channels distributed by StarTimes.

    "We intend to ride on our current 70% digital television network coverage in the country to extend the reach of our informative, educative and entertaining channel offering to more Kenyans key in not only growing our market share but also giving them an enviable choice that will enrich their television viewing experience," said Hans Han, VP marketing, StarTimes.

    The operator is investing US$75 million into its network as part of the country's digital migration programme, with 100% network coverage the ultimate aim. StarTimes now provides pay-TV services in 16 African countries with a subscriber base of four million and global reach of seven million.

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    Kaltura acquires OTT technology provider Tvinci

    May 2, 2014 07.39 Europe/London By Robert Briel


    ido_oferOpen source video platform Kaltura acquired Tvinci, a provider of Pay OTT TV services.

    Kaltura raised $47 million in venture capital in February and has experienced revenue and customer growth in the past year, as cited by leading analyst firms. The acquisition of Tvinci strengthens Kaltura’s pay-TV operator proposition and creates a comprehensive end-to-end Pay OTT TV offering.

    The OTT market which, according to Pricewaterhouse Coopers, will reach $17.44 billion by 2017, has emerged as one of the fastest growing segments in the media industry, with hundreds of millions of viewers worldwide watching some or all of their content online in a variety of ad-supported, subscription, and transactional service offerings.

    Kaltura has already begun integrating Tvinci’s technology into its OTT MediaGo product. The integrated Kaltura-Tvinci platform enables operators and telcos, media companies, content owners and distributors to reach and monetise every user on every device. The platform supports live, on demand, and catchup services; SVOD, TVOD and ad-based monetization; social interaction and a personalized experience.

    The integration of Tvinci’s technology into Kaltura’s platform also enhances Kaltura’s solutions for the Enterprise and Education markets, with advanced social and personalisation capabilities, and with tools for creating bundles and promotions.

    Tvinci employs more than 60 people worldwide, including a strong research and development team at the company’s headquarters in Israel that will be merging with Kaltura’s Israel-based technology team.

    Tvinci’s founders, Ofer Shayo and Ido Wiesenberg (on the picture above), and key executives, Avidan Lamdan and Amir Eilat, will be joining Kaltura’s top management team in a variety of global positions.

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    Canalsat switches to MPEG-4 in July 2015

    May 2, 2014 08.11 Europe/London By Robert Briel


    CanalSatHDbouquetFrench DTH Platform Canalsat informed its subscribers it will turn to all-MPEG-4 satellite distribution by the end of June, 2015.

    In a letter, the platform said it will gradually migrate all channels to the MPEG-4 standard, allowing more channels to be broadcast in HD rather than SD.

    According to Canalsat MPEG-4 is “a coding standard which enables the operator to save its precious satellite resources and opening the doors for other services.”

    The operator said it wishes to broadcast all channels in HD. “To assist you with this change, or avoid any inconvenience, we are currently working on updating your decoders. We are committed to take all the necessary measures for you to better enjoy your programmes.”

    Canalsat’s move follows an earlier migration of its Canal Overseas services to all-MPEG-4.

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    CenturyLink adds NUVOtv to pay-TV line-up

    Gabriel Miramar-Garcia | 02-05-2014

    NUVOtv, the English-language network for Latino entertainment, has launched on CenturyLink Prism IPTV in key markets, with nationwide rollout to be completed by mid-2014.

    NUVOtv SD and HD are now available on one of the distributor's most highly penetrated packages, Prism Complete.

    "We look forward to providing CenturyLink Prism's customers with an unmatched slate of original English-language entertainment for the modern Latino audience, in SD, HD, video-on-demand (VOD) and TV everywhere for authenticated customers," said Judi Lopez, senior vice president of distribution and affiliate marketing at NUVOtv.

    The move comes as new content is set to ramp up on the network. In 2013, global superstar Jennifer Lopez was named chief creative officer of NUVOtv, with involvement in programming, marketing and other key functions of the network. This year Lopez's production company, Nuyorican, has produced The/Collective Powered by Vevo and Nu Point of View: The Emerging Latino Filmmakers.

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    Imagine unveils Xenio workflow manager

    Michelle Clancy | 02-05-2014

    Imagine Communications has unveiled the Xenio workflow manager, a software engine that enables broadcasters and pay-TV service providers to design, deploy and manage software-defined workflows.

    "Xenio is a significant component of our software-defined workflow roadmap, providing a framework that will serve as the underlying architecture for expanding Imagine Communications' enterprise business software, playout automation and networking portfolio, while providing key workflow building blocks," said Charlie Vogt, CEO of Imagine Communications. "Our software-defined approach allows media broadcast and service providers to change the workflow sequence, tasks and timing on the fly with ease. This creates a more flexible development environment that will accelerate service velocity by enabling users to introduce new technology and service offerings, advancing their networks faster and smarter."

    The modular Xenio architecture provides technologies as service-enabling components – from media functions like encoding and packaging to business-oriented functionality such as analytics and automated intelligence – enabling custom-developed functionality and integration of new technologies as they emerge and evolve. With a flexible architecture and graphical design interface that allow control of which technologies are used in workflows, Xenio can enable optimised resource utilisation while helping to eliminate unnecessary workflow steps.

    "Today's networks and media processing pipelines are an amalgam of technologies, products and processes that create significant operational challenges for customers," said Brick Eksten, vice president of product development for Xenio at Imagine. "Xenio's leading-edge capabilities are based on advanced software principles and technologies that integrate naturally with our customers' IT systems and business processes. Adopting Xenio to power an increasing array of workflow processes will provide our customers with all of the cost reduction and operational benefits of a standardised platform while streamlining workflow design and implementation. We look forward to working with customers and partners to build on this next generation of agile workflow management."

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    Inconsistent coverage makes TV ops lack confidence in Wi-Fi

    Joseph O'Halloran | 02-05-2014

    Satellite and cable service providers have expressed huge concern that connected homes are not so connected due to inherent flaws flaws in wireless technologies.

    Worryingly, given that operators are pinning so much hope on value-added services through the home, new research from Informa and AirTies Wireless Networks has found that even though more than thee-quarters of cable and satellite operators, telecom service providers, mobile operators, OTT consumer IP service providers and free-to-air broadcasters deliver TV services over Wi-Fi, as many as two-thirds of them see inconsistent wireless coverage as a major barrier to delivering video services in the home. Just under a third regard Wi-Fi as the most effective way of delivering video to multiple screens in the home when compared with Powerline, Coxial cable and other in-home wiring.

    When asked to rate the reason for support-related calls, they gave high scores to poor Wi-Fi range, dead spots within the home, followed by Wi-Fi connection speed being slower than headline Internet speeds.

    The report also revealed that service providers use an ad hoc range of approaches to delivering multiscreen video with two-fifths providing no central DVR-enabled gateway, opting instead for each set-top box to be connected individually to the broadcast network. Just over a quarter (28%) of respondents deliver broadcast TV signals to a central gateway-type device in the home and the same number (28%) delivered over a single integrated IP-based head-end to all devices.

    Yet, encouragingly, looking at the keys to success of multiscreen and multi-room TV, the survey showed that quality of service and improved reliability of Wi-Fi was high on the wish list of operators. Just over half (54%) of respondents cited uniformity of service across multiple devices to be the most important service factor for customers, and two-fifths of operators stated that minimising support calls and truck rolls were of high importance to them. Respondents also rated the ability of subscribers to install equipment themselves as important with 36% giving this the highest rating.

    "Customers expect flawless video and TV service delivery within the home, although many will forgive disrupted service outside of the home, customers expect in-home multiscreen and device services to be just as good as those on the main TV screen," said Bulent Celebi, chairman and co-founder of AirTies, commenting on the research findings. "Yet the study has shown that Wi-Fi signal is not delivering that perfect service. As a consequence, smart providers are now recognising that they need to put technology in place that provides a bridge between wireless strength and delivery of the TV or video service."

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    S4C goes online via TVPlayer

    Editor | 02-05-2014

    Yet another UK free-to-air channel has unveiled its own free-to-view online video player, this time the Welsh language service S4C.

    Broadcasting over 115 hours each week, S4C is the only Welsh language channel in the world and provides mix of entertainment, drama, sport, factual and cultural programming across a variety of platforms, including specific services for children and younger viewers. It is principally funded by the BBC Licence Fee with a proportion coming from the UK Government's Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) and also has some powers to generate its own commercial income.

    The channel has gained recognition for highly acclaimed dramas — including the detective series Y Gwyll / Hinterland - broadcast first on S4C in autumn 2013 and is currently being shown on BBC Four and the mystery drama series, 35 Diwrnod (35 Days) — and the Monday night football programme Sgorio which has gained almost cult status among fans for the foresight of showing games from Italy's Serie A and Spain's La Liga long before their arrival on pay-TV services.

    "TVPlayer offers a new way of accessing the Channel and the app gives people the freedom to watch on a wide variety of mobile devices," commented Elin Morris, S4C director of corporate and commercial policy. "This provides an additional way for audiences to find and enjoy S4C's content."

    Indeed the TVPlayer is claimed to be the fastest growing mobile TV service in the UK, having grown by a million users since it launched at the beginning of 2014. The addition of S4C brings the number of TV channels on the TVPlayer platform to 35. S4C is available from today in the Entertainment Pack together with channels from the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 and Channel 5. Added TVPlayer platform manager Lewis Arthur: "We are excited to bring S4C onto our platform. TVPlayer increases channel reach via multiplatform viewing opportunities across [online video], mobile and tablet."

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    Univision announces talent deployment for Brazil's World Cup

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 02-05-2014

    Univision Deportes says it will be ready to cover this year's World Cup in Brazil like no other network, announcing it has a raft of stellar talent on board and targeted resources to bring US fans the most comprehensive football experience.

    The FIFA tournament kicks off on 12 June and will involve worldwide football stars including Messi, Ronaldo and Neymar. Univision Deportes will provide 24-hour coverage for 31 days across all of its broadcast and digital platforms, including live telecasts and streaming of all 64 matches plus live pre- and post-game commentary and reporting from Brazil's 12 tournament cities.

    Univision's announcers and commentators include many of the most renowned sportscasters in Spanish-language media. They will be joined by a group of guest analysts composed of current and former international soccer professionals who will bring their on-field expertise and insight to the table.

    The live play-by-play coverage and commentary from Brazil will be led Diego Balado, Enrique 'El Perro' Bermúdez, Félix 'El Gato' Fernández, Jesús 'El Profe' Bracamontes, Jorge Pérez Navarro, José Luis López Salido, Luis Omar Tapia and Pablo 'La Torre de Jalisco' Ramírez. Former players such as Carlos Pavón, Hristo Stoichkov, Javier Castrilli, Marcelo Balboa and Mauro Camoranesi will complete the team.

    In addition, the entire line-up of Univision Deportes shows will be dedicated to the 2014 World Cup championship from 12 June through to 13 July, featuring extensive pre- and post-game coverage by Univision Deportes' talent.

    The World Cup tournament will also have a prominent presence in Univision's entertainment and news programming as some of the network's most popular personalities travel to Brazil to bring viewers a first-hand look at all the colour and excitement surrounding the event.

    Univision Deportes will also offer real0time coverage and exclusive behind the scenes World Cup content on mobile screens, through the Android and iOS app.

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    NexTV will focus on future of VOD, TV everywhere in LATAM

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 02-05-2014

    In a growing Latin American pay-TV market, where new over-the-top (OTT) operators such as Netflix are landing and traditional platforms - AMX, DirecTV, Telefónica - are focusing on new technologies, it's becoming difficult to predict the future.

    To this end, the biggest pay-TV operators from Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Paraguay will meet on 20 May at the NexTV Summit South America 2014 in Buenos Aires in a bid to shine some light on the future of TV everywhere, video-on-demand (VOD) and multiscreen strategies in the region.

    Executives from the leading operators will participate in the event which will also be attended by representatives from platforms including Cablevision, VTR, Telefónica and TCC, media groups including Turner, Chello, FOX and A&E, new operators such as Copaco, Entel and Unicable and technology providers like LG, Nagra, Sony, Viaccess, Amino and Brightcove.

    The near future is clearly marked by Netflix's evolution, according to the French consultancy firm Dataxis, which is organising the summit. With over 2.5 million subs in the region by the end of 2013, the OTT platform is the sixth pay-TV operator in LATAM, behind América Móvil (AMX), DirecTV, Televisa, Clarín and Telefónica.

    The event's full schedule and registration details are available at southamerica.nextvsummit.com.


 

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