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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Telefónica moves in to buy stake in Canal+ Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 07 May 2014 Telefónica's interest in Canal+ appears

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    Telefónica moves in to buy stake in Canal+

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 07 May 2014

    Telefónica's interest in Canal+ appears to be serious, having told the country's market regulator, Comisión Nacional del Mercado de Valores (CNMV), that it has presented a €725 million offer to buy 56% of the pay-TV platform.

    No more details have been unveiled in the succinct release published by the Spanish telco through CNMV which will now have to study the market implications of the offer.

    Telefónica already owns 22% of DTS - the legal name of the Canal+ group which is currently controlled by Prisa. Italy's Mediaset owns the other 22% of the pay-TV platform.

    Telefónica and Mediaset have been negotiating with Prisa since the beginning of the year, and an agreement looked likely by the end of March, but the announcement has been delayed with no explanation. However, the Spanish competition commission did step in at the time and said that the deal may have ramifications in Europe.

    Telefónica is also increasing its own pay-TV offer, which may be difficult to compete with if it also controls Canal+ and its nearly two million subscribers.

    Canal+ is Spain's largest pay-TV operator and relies on a client base which spends a lot of money on premium content. In addition, it has one of the most used online platforms, Yomvi.

    Telefónica is aiming to secure its place in the pay-TV market in Spain and Prisa has stated on several occasions that it needs to sell Canal+. The negotiations may well come to an end within the next few weeks.

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    EVS provides workflow for Peru's public TV

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez | 07 May 2014

    TV Peru, the country's public network, has selected a file-based workflow from EVS for its wide-ranging news, entertainment and cultural programming. The company has implemented a system based on its XS production server for studio applications.

    The EVS' four-channel XS server facilitates TV Peru's migration to HD by playing out in high definition and down converting second channels to standard definition until its migration to HD is complete.

    "The speed and reliability of our new tapeless workflow from EVS makes a difference in our day-to-day operations and programming quality," said Cesar Otero, technical director at TV Peru. "The connection between different areas of our workflow and administrator and quality control management access make for a more fluid system."

    The XS server can be managed by a range of EVS hardware and software controllers adapted to all types of production workflows, as well as third-party tools such as automation systems, linear or hybrid editors, switchers and controllers. XS can also emulate tape machines, eliminating the need for playback equipment and editing recorders.

    "An efficient and reliable tapeless workflow frees up more time for creativity, enabling TV Peru to focus on delivering a better end product," said Benjamin Mariage, vice president sales for Latin America at EVS.

    The new workflow also includes XTAccess, EVS' gateway software that facilitates media interchange with third-party tools and creates low-resolution versions of all clips, which are stored on a near-line system and available for browsing through an IP connection.

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    Swisscom grows with IPTV

    May 7, 2014 09.56 Europe/London By Jörn Krieger


    Swisscom buildingSwitzerland’s national telco Swisscom has gained 52,000 new customers for its IPTV platform Swisscom TV in Q1 2014, corresponding with a growth by 22.3% within 12 months to a total of 1.05 million customers (March 31, 2013: 860,000 customers).

    In Q1 2013, however, the increase was stronger with 69,000 new IPTV customers.

    The new Swisscom TV 2.0 proposition with enhanced features which launched in early April 2014 has won around 30,000 customers by the end of April, most of them having transferred from the previous Swisscom offering.

    The number of fixed-line broadband subscribers rose by 22,000 to a total of 1.8 million in Q1 2014.

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    Chris Patten quits as BBC Trust Chairman

    Joseph O'Halloran | 07 May 2014

    In yet another blow for the broadcaster, BBC Trust chairman Chris Patten is standing down from his role with immediate effect following major heart surgery.

    Patten took up his post in May 2011 and announced in July 2013 that he would step down in May 2015 just after the UK General election at which the issue of BBC funding will assume political importance.

    In a statement announcing his retirement, Patten said: "As is well known, I underwent angioplasty while in Hong Kong and a cardiac ablation procedure some seven years ago; and since then I have been regularly assessed by my cardiologist ... On the advice of my doctors, however, and having consulted my family and friends, I have concluded that I cannot continue to work at the same full pace as I have done to date, and that I should reduce the range of roles I undertake. On this basis I have decided with great regret to step down from much the most demanding of my roles – that of chairman of the BBC Trust."

    Patten's tenure as head of the body designed to work on behalf of licence fee payers so that the BBC provides high quality output, good value and independence has been beset by numerous highs and lows. The success of covering the 2013 London Olympic Games was effectively obliterated by the Jimmy Savile scandal and the Newsnight crises.

    These effectively precipitated the resignation of hapless former Director General George Entwistle and the furore over repayments to former senior members of staff which saw Patten and former executives, most notably former DG Mark Thompson, severely bruised by the UK parliament's media select committee in a process that revealed in-fighting and incompetence.

    Commenting on the resignation, newly appointed Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport and Minister for Equalities, Sajid Javid, said: "It is with regret that the government accepts your resignation. Over the last three years under your chairmanship you have steered the trust successfully through some great moments for the BBC including coverage of the Olympics and continuing to deliver high quality original programming that is exported around the world. You have also embraced the challenges that have confronted the BBC, putting in place improvements to governance and building a stronger executive team helping the BBC to move forward with confidence. Throughout you have shown an unfettered personal commitment to securing the best outcome for the public."

    Before the UK Government identifies a successor, Diane Coyle, as vice chairman of the trust, will serve as acting chair.

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    Applicaster powers Survivors' social feed


    DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 08 May 2014
    Spain's Mediaset has launched a new tool for the TV show Survivors. Powered by Applicaster, a prime time social feed and a live audience show aim to bring the show closer to viewers, driving participation and engagement.

    Survivor, which is broadcast by Telecinco, can be followed through the Mitele TV app where viewers can follow their favourite contestants and get daily summaries of the island's events, pictures and exclusive content.

    Once a week, a live prime time programme takes place in the studio, during which viewers vote for their favourite contestant. Based on the on screen graphics system integration, voting data is delivered back to the studio, triggering LED display on the set to feature viewer picture profiles, according to their vote.

    Voting, and other broadcaster second-screen activities, are accessible to viewers on the Mitele TV app via the primetime social feed. Applicaster's product offers an aggregated timeline of all show-associated broadcaster activities combined with social elements, such as viewer comments, photos, tweets, replies and more.

    "The introduction of the live votes and social interactivity for Survivor creates a huge hype and excitement around the show in general, and around the prime time programmes in particular," said Ana Bueno, director of multimedia content, Mediaset España.

    "Mediaset España is an innovative player in the TV industry which found more than one way to connect the dots between TV content and the audience," added Laura Tapias, VP for Spain and LATAM at Applicaster. "This interactive TV experience offered to Survivor viewers is magnified by the immediate feedback they receive in the form of votes coming to life on the TV screen, tightening their emotional connection to the show," Tapias added.

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    DirecTV sees slower customer additions in Q1
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    Gabriel Miramar-Garcia
    | 08 May 2014

    The leading US satellite TV provider DirecTV reported a higher-than-expected quarterly profit this week, even though subscriber growth slowed.


    Profit fell to $561 million, down from $690 million a year earlier. But on an adjusted basis, the company earned $1.63 per share, beating analysts' average estimates of $1.50 per share. That was driven by stock repurchases of $895 million in the quarter, the company said.


    US net subscriber additions fell to 12,000 from 21,000 a year earlier. Analysts were expecting net additions of 14,000. Net subscriber additions in Latin America, its largest growth area, fell to 361,000 from 583,000 a year earlier, but came above analysts' estimates of 277,000.


    Revenue however was up—it increased 4% to $7.86 billion, but missed the average analyst estimate of $7.91 billion.


    Revenue from its DirecTV Latin America unit - which accounts for 21% of its total and remains the main growth market for the company - remained flat, at $1.72 billion as average revenue per user fell 10%. That unit was hit with a $281 million charge related to devaluations of the Venezuelan Bolivar.

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    UPC Cablecom raises triple play customers

    May 7, 2014 10.19 Europe/London By Jörn Krieger


    UPC CablecomSwitzerland’s largest cable operator UPC Cablecom has recorded growing interest in its triple play services TV, internet and telephony in Q1 2014.

    The number of TV customers rose by 5,300 to a total of 1.42 million. The number of internet customers climbed by 11,600 to 675,400 while 4,500 new customers signed up for telephony, increasing the total number of telephone subscribers to 463,000.

    Since April 1, 2014, the Liberty Global subsidiary has been offering an internet data rate of up to 250Mbps throughout Switzerland.

    Around 30,000 new customers opted for the multimedia box Horizon in the past four months which was introduced in January 2013. In total, 160,000 UPC Cablecom customers now have the device which combines TV, internet and telephony.

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    Com Hem sets out its priorities

    May 7, 2014 10.37 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul, Delivering TV from the Cloud, Stockholm


    Henri CaddeoAlthough Com Hem is more interested in HEVC than 4K, both are definitely on its road map, according to Henri Caddeo, the operator’s CTO.

    Speaking in a briefing on delivering TV from the Cloud in the Nordics and Baltic Republics, organised by Broadband TV News and SeaChange in Stockholm, he added that in the case of HEVC, Com Hem was looking at indoor consumption using wireless technology, which would use less bandwidth to offer the same quality.

    Speaking about TiVo, Caddeo added Netflix has performed substantially better on its platform than any other in Sweden.

    He also said that Com Hem was strengthening its multiscreen offer by extending TiVoToGo, with its ambition being to have a fully transparent offer everywhere.

    Regarding the cloud, he said that the movement to it was being undertaken technically for speed, with a new set-top box taking up to a year to launch.

    However, the main reason was to move from a 80/20 hardware to software CAPEX ratio to the other way round.

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    Starman looks to the future

    May 7, 2014 10.49 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul, Delivering TV from the Cloud, Stockholm


    Starman Mobile appEstonia’s leading cable operator Starman sees a future in which cloud services are integrated into devices.

    Moreover, said Hanno Liiva, the company’s CTO, it expects see nPVR as more of a “killer service” and that in 10 years time everything will have been replaced by the cloud. Liiva was speaking at the Broadband TV News/SeaChange event in Stockholm ‘Delivering TV from the cloud throughout the home in the Nordics and Baltic Republics’.

    Liiva added that Starman currently covers 53% of all households in Estonia and its services are received by a third of Estonians.

    Furthermore, its network is 100% DOCSIS 3.0-enabled.

    Starman has pioneered the introduction of a number of services into Estonia and most recently, earlier this year, launched a smartphone app with nPVR scheduling.

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    Telefónica makes €725m Digital+ bid

    May 7, 2014 10.57 Europe/London By Julian Clover


    telefonica_campusTelefónica has tabled a €725 million offer for 56% of the Spanish pay-TV operation Digital Plus.

    The bid is somewhat less than the €1,000 million sought by the cash-strapped media concern Prisa that is effectively being forced to sell its TV operations.

    Telefónica already holds 22% of Digital+ and with 78% of the company would be in effective control, sitting alongside junior partner Mediaset, which currently holds 22% of the company.

    The telco has been looking to relaunch its existing IPTV offer Movistar TV. In the past Telefónica was a pay-TV operator in its own right through the Via Digital satellite platform, until its merger into what is now Digital+/Canal+ in 2002.

    BSkyB, Al Jazeera and Liberty Global have previously been linked with a bid.

    The offer will first need the approval of the National Commission on Financial Markets and Competition (CNMC).


 

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