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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Vubiquity adds rights management, VOD control to cloud video Michelle Clancy | 11 June 2014 Vubiquity has selected Mediamorph, creators

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    Vubiquity adds rights management, VOD control to cloud video

    Michelle Clancy
    | 11 June 2014

    Vubiquity has selected Mediamorph, creators of a rights management solution, and BeBanjo, which provides video-on-demand (VOD) management software, as component vendors for its AnyVU Cloud platform.


    Vubiquity's AnyVU Cloud offers a broad set of modular services that include access to a library of licensed content, on-demand and linear delivery to set-top boxes (STBs) and IP-connected devices, and direct-to-subscriber streaming, as well as other next-generation video services.

    "Mediamorph Connect and BeBanjo Movida offer best in breed software products. We are excited about working with Vubiquity and providing them our tools," said Michael Sid, co-Founder and CEO of Mediamorph.

    Mediamorph Connect takes digital rights information from studios, via spreadsheets and emails, and ports it to an automated flow of data through APIs. Vubiquity will utilise Connect to consolidate rights and avails data flowing from hundreds of content providers.

    BeBanjo's Movida product will be used to schedule content for delivery to their video service provider clients around the globe.

    "BeBanjo and Mediamorph products are complementary," said François Chabat, CEO of BeBanjo. 'They are designed specifically to simplify the running of complex non-linear services, such as Vubiquity's. We are proud to have been selected by Vubiquity, to bring new efficiencies to their global operations."

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    Iron Belly heads to BBC America, HBO Canada

    Michelle Clancy
    | 11 June 2014

    Multimedia entertainment studio Electus has sold Iron Belly to BBC America and HBO Canada.


    The order from the networks is a script with a goal to commission a series.

    The series depicts a floating prison sailing from Ireland to Australia in the 19th Century. What starts as a simple but brutal journey across the sea becomes a study of humanity above and below the decks. The characters of Captain Byron Gibbons, a relentlessly ambitious empire-builder, and Cormac O'Brien, a naive Irish rebel convict, anchor the story.

    "We are thrilled to work with Darius Films, BBC America and HBO Canada to bring Iron Belly to audiences around the world, as the show's unique mix of history, action and drama will resonate brilliantly with global viewers," said John Pollak, president of Electus International. "Our goal at Electus Studios is to deliver content that is unique in tone and unsurpassed in quality, always captivating viewers and leaving them craving for more."

    Electus serves as the production studio for the series, which is co-produced by Electus and the LA and Toronto-based film and TV production company, Darius Films

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    Hub Network brings Blossom back to TV

    Michelle Clancy
    | 11 June 2014

    Popular 1990s US sitcom Blossom is back with a goal of captivating a new generation of teenagers, thanks to a deal with Viacom's Hub Network. Blossom has not aired on television in 15 years.


    The Hub Network has licensed all five seasons of Blossom (113 episodes) from the Disney-ABC Television Group.

    "Viewers can relive Blossom's inspiring journey as she navigates from childhood into adulthood, facing the real trials and tribulations of adolescence and learning valuable life lessons along the way," Hub said in a statement. "Life has its share of ups and downs, but Blossom meets challenges head-on with pluck, imagination and a healthy sense of humour."

    The series stars actress Mayim Bialik (now seen in the Big Bang Theory) as Blossom Russo, Ted Wass as her father Nick, Joey Lawrence as her older brother Joey, Michael Stoyanov as her other older brother Anthony and Jenna von Oÿ as her best friend Six.

    An all-star group of guest stars have hit the series, including Will Smith, Tobey Maguire, Neil Patrick Harris, Sonny Bono, Dick Clark, Estelle Getty, Johnny Galecki, David Schwimmer, BB King, Alex Trebek, Little Richard, Reggie Jackson, Arsenio Hall, Brittany Murphy, David Arquette, Tori Spelling and even alien puppet ALF.

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    Entel starts commercialising DTH

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 11 June 2014

    It was two months later than initially announced, but Bolivia's public telco Entel is now commercialising its direct-to-home (DTH) platform.

    The service covers the whole country and includes premium packages and a pre-paid offer. The basic plan will cost $0.15 until the end of June, a launch offer anticipating the competitive pricing of Entel compared to other pay-TV options in the country.

    According to the country's media La Razón and Jornada, the basic package will cost around $8 plus an aerial and an SD set-top box (STB) at a price of $40. The other three plans include an HD STB for $55 and then $18 for 74 channels, $25 for 92 and $27 for the widest option of 102 channels.

    In spite of its recent launch, Entel also wants to draw customers via the World Cup and has announced it will broadcast the semi-finals and the final through the new service, as Cotel owns the FIFA broadcasting rights in Bolivia.

    Entel is launching the platform through the Túpac Katari satellite, of which it owns 50% of capacity. The satellite was on trial until 16 March and Entel's service was originally scheduled to launch on 1 April.

    The DTH platform is part of Entel's growth plans, which have driven a $300 million investment this year. The national telco aims to compete in the growing pay-TV market against other companies focusing on Bolivia, such as Tigo Millicom.

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    Media Networks powers Movistar's satellite Internet in Chile

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 11 June 2014

    Chile's Movistar is to launch a satellite Internet service supported by Media Networks' platform iSAT-Ka.

    The communication service is to cover the central area of the country, including the capital district of Santiago.

    Movistar's offer includes packages of 2Mbps, 3Mbps, 4Mbps and 6Mbps between the cities of Illapel in the north of the central area and San Fernando, south of Santiago. "We are pleased to see that satellite Internet has become a reality in Chile, thanks to Movistar's bet on our platform," said Gustavo Arditti, Media Network's director in Chile. "iSAT-Ka has a huge potential to complement the coverage offered by other networks and it's essential to warranty the universal access to broadband in the region."

    The service powered by Telefónica's B2B unit is already operational in other areas of Latin America and will be launching in other markets soon, confirmed Arditti. The satellite Internet platform is operating in Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Peru, Ecuador and, now, Chile.

    Media Networks has been reinforcing its service power over the last few years by building two satellite gateways, one in Arica, Chile, and another in Laredo, US. In addition, a monitoring centre in Peru's capital Lima opened last year to control all the region's operations.

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    Telefónica looks to Netflix model

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 11 June 2014

    First came the exclusive sports rights for pay-TV, then the purchase of Canal+, and now Telefónica intends to launch a VOD catalogue including most of the platform's programmes and networks.

    The Spanish telco is on its way to becoming a video company, as its president César Alierta has announced.

    According to Expansión, Telefónica aims to transform Movistar TV to become a kind of Netflix model. In this future platform, which will be ready in the coming months, customers will be able to watch on-demand all the movies and series scheduled in Telefónica's platform.

    The Spanish telco aims to make Movistar TV's offer more flexible so premium content won't necessarily be tied to a concrete premium subscription and will be available as single VOD pieces.

    The plan is also to secure its current subscriber portfolio - which comprises over 700,000 people already - and drive them to its recently deployed fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) network and its triple-play and quad-play services.

    Telefónica's business in Spain has been falling in recent years while the telco was paying more attention to the growing Latin American market. But since January 2014, the company is focusing on a field which had been secondary up until now: pay-TV.

    After several moves to reinforce its position in the TV sector, the deal with Prisa to get to control of Canal+ and its 1.7 million customers was the final step to become the leader of the Spanish market.

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    European pay-TV revenues flatten in 2014

    Joseph O'Halloran | 11 June 2014

    Despite totalling $40.35 billion by the end of the year, 2014 will be flat in terms of growth for the European pay-TV market according to a report from Digital TV Research.

    In the European Digital TV Datebook year-on-year growth by the end of 2014 is forecast to be just 0.6%, reflecting, said the analyst, falling ARPU at operators buffeted not just by competition but also the transition of subscribers to double-play and triple-play bundles, traditionally bad for TV-based revenues.

    In the key Western Europe sector, the survey predicts that pay-TV revenues will increase by 5.9% from $31.9 billion in 2010 to $33.8 billion in 2014, with Eastern Europe up by 32.2% to $6.5 billion. The UK and Germany will lead pay-TV revenues in 2014 raking in $7.8 billion and $4.6 billion respectively. By the end of the year, pay-TV revenues in Germany will likely have increased by $945 million between 2010 and 2014 and by $813 million in Russia, nearly double its 2010 total.

    However, it is a different story for France and Spain where revenues, and indeed pay-TV subs, are set to fall over the same period. Overall Digital TV Research calculates that pay-TV subscriptions will increase from 154.5 million in 2010 to 171.6 million by end-2014. The Western European total will rise by only 4 million to 97.3 million, but Eastern Europe will climb by 13.1 million to 74.4 million. Digital TV penetration is set reach 81.9% of European TV households by end-2014, a total of 240.3 million, up by 12.7 million during the year and up by 67.2 million since 2010.

    In terms of platforms, satellite TV is likely to contribute 45.6% of pay-TV revenues in 2014. Yet it must be noted that, satellite TV revenues — like those of pay-DTT — are falling, partly due to greater competition but also due to the growth of cheaper packages. By contrast however, IPTV is on track to register strong revenue growth.

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    ITV Player rocks up on Roku streaming platform

    Editor
    | 11 June 2014

    In a key expansion of its streaming product in a very competitive market, ITV has announced that its media player will now be offered on the Roku streaming platform.

    The ITV Player provides customers with access to the last 30 days of ITV's catch-up content across ITV, ITV2, ITV3, ITV4 and CITV. It can now be found in the UK Roku Channel Store on all current-generation Roku players, including the HDMI version of the recently launched Roku Streaming Stick.

    Commenting on the launch, Martin Goswami, director of pay & distribution at ITV, said: "A key part of our strategy is to make our content accessible on multiple platforms and we are delighted to be working with Roku to bring our programmes to their devices."

    Ed Lee, vice president of content acquisition at Roku, added: "ITV Player is one of the most recognised sources of programming in the UK and we're delighted to bring its premier library of popular shows to Roku customers in the UK. Our focus is always on offering the best streaming entertainment and ITV is a great addition for TV lovers."

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    Hitron demonstrates headless gateway functionality

    June 11, 2014 05.55 Europe/London By Robert Briel



    Hitron logoHitron Technologies, a supplier of innovative DOCSIS products, demonstrates headless gateway functionality on its mainstream EuroDOCSIS 3.0 gateway CGNV4 based on DVBC2IP and RDK2.0.

    Hitron’s innovation teams have been working to integrate headless gateway functionality on the CGNV4’s application processor. During the recent ANGA COM 2014, Hitron demonstrated the RDK 2.0 implementation showing live video streaming with a full PVR user experience. Recordings and time-shift buffer of the live video are stored on an external USB hard disk drive.

    “With headless gateway functionality on our mainstream products Hitron shows that its innovative capabilities are truly end-user driven.” said Luke Van Lierop, VP and managing director of Hitron Technologies Europe.

    “Convergence of TV and broadband is yet to come, but mainstream CGNV4 already enables operators and end-users to benefit from both without the need of CAPEX and OPEX investments”.
    The headless gateway uses up to eight of CGNV4′s twenty-four downstream tuners. Due to its powerful core processors CGNV4 is capable of running as full functional headless gateway, eMTA and IEEE802.11ac dualband concurrent wireless broadband router at the same time.

    Van Lierop concluded: “We are convinced that CGNV4′s headless gateway capabilities will improve business models for our cable operator customers. Our next step is to further extend the number of downstreams for our products in 2015″.

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    Volia exits Crimea

    June 11, 2014 06.53 Europe/London By Chris Dziadul



    The leading Ukrainian cable operator Volia will cease providing services in Crimea on July 1.

    Quoted by local media sources, the company says that it “always acts in accordance with the law and cannot operate in a legal vacuum, in an environment where there is no opportunity to comply with Ukrainian laws”.

    In Crimea, it is unable to receive and retransmit Ukrainian TV channels, as required by Ukrainian legislation.

    It also cannot obtain payment in roubles.

    Volia has therefore decided to enter into an agreement with the company Telecommunications Systems, which will provide services to its customers in the same volume and with no significant change in price.

    The company will be able to temporarily use the Volia brand name and will pay Volia royalties.


 

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