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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Deutsche Telekom secures Basketball Bundesliga rights Germany’s national telco Deutsche Telekom has acquired the whole range of media rights for

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    Deutsche Telekom secures Basketball Bundesliga rights

    Germany’s national telco Deutsche Telekom has acquired the whole range of media rights for Germany’s domestic basketball league Basketball Bundesliga (BBL) for the next four seasons until 2017/18.

    The agreement of which financial details have not been disclosed contains the national and international broadcast rights. Telekom will show all BBL games live via IPTV, mobile TV and internet in Germany. Additionally, there will be a partner making selected matches available on free-to-air TV. Negotiations are apparently underway with Sport1 and Eurosport.

    The rights package Telekom purchased comprises all 306 BBL games of the main round, all playoff matches as well as the cup final BBL Top Four, the BBL Allstar Day, the BBL Champions Cup and the cup qualifying matches from the 2014/15 season onwards. All games will be produced in HD using at least four cameras.

    Customers of IPTV platform Entertain and other Telekom products will be able to watch all matches free of charge: on the TV set, PC, tablet or smartphone. For Basketball fans who don’t have a Telekom contract, a subscription offering will be made available for access via internet and mobile TV.

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    Ukraine eyes further Russian TV clampdown

    Ukraine’s National Council for Television and Radio is considering a further court appeal to prohibit the retransmission of some Russian channels in the country.

    Speaking in a press briefing, the Council’s chairman Vladimir Manzhosov said this was due to numerous complaints from citizens about the content of transmissions from the channels.

    He added that ongoing proceedings to ban four channels – First Channel, Vsemyrnaya Network; RTR Planeta; Rossiya 24; and NTV Mir – are taking place in the Kiev District Administrative Court.

    Furthermore, all programme service providers, with the exception of those in Luhansk and Donetsk regions, are respecting relevant court decisions.

    Manzhosov added that a number of other Russian channels, containing false and hostile information, are also being monitored.

    Meanwhile, Larisa Mudrak, the Council’s deputy head, revealed that Ukraine sent an official letter to the European Platform of Regulatory Authorities (EPRA) no more than 20 days ago requesting a review of Russian channels broadcast on French satellites.

    The Council hopes to shortly receive a response from the French regulator and it (the Council) will have the opportunity to take further steps against the Russian channels.

    However, she also said it is important for European media environment to avoid steps amounting to censorship.

    At the same time, it was important to ensure viewers were receiving the correct information, adding that the next step would be to amend existing legislation relating to categories and definitions.

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    Aronsson named new C More CEO

    Manfred Aronsson, the newly appointed head of C More, has admitted the TV4-owned premium channel is under pressure.

    Aronsson, a former MTG and SBS executive, takes over from Johan Kleberg.

    “We are very happy to have Manfred Aronsson on board. He has a solid background in television and is wwll acquainted with C More. This makes him ideal for tackling the challenges the company is facing,” says Casten Almqvist, CEO of TV4 Group, Chairman of C More and Head of business area Broadcasting within Bonnier.

    Aronsson was CEO of MTG Sweden from 2008to 2012 and before that CEO of Kanal 5 from 1999 to 2006. He was also chairman of Canal+in the Nordic region – the effective predecessor to C More – for two years from 2006.

    “I’m very much anticipating returning to the company. During some time, C More has been under pressure not least in Norway and Denmark. My mission is to find the best possible road ahead and structure for C More, and also the optimal way to showcase the company’s extremely strong rights catalogue for sports, films and tv series,” Manfred Aronsson says.

    C More’s present CEO Johan Kleberg is leaving TV4 Group for the position as CEO of the Bonnier owned Adlibris Group.

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    Open IPTV Forum and HbbTV decide to merge

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    With hybrid technologies getting more mainstream, fragmentation has been looming as an issue for operators and developers. To help bring harmonisation to the space, the members of the Open IPTV Forum and the HbbTV Association have merged their activities into a single organisation.


    With the recognition that there is a significant overlap between their activities and membership, as well as complementary work which could enhance both, the members of the Open IPTV Forum and the HbbTV Association have approved the plan to integrate OIPF's future activities into the HbbTV organisation.

    "The single organisation we have created will ensure that the common platform based on the OIPF browser and used by HbbTV will evolve in a compatible way to serve all three types of service delivery models covered by both our members – over-the-top, hybrid broadcast/broadband and IPTV," explained Nilo Mitra, president of the Open IPTV Forum.

    Klaus Illgner, chairman of the HbbTV Steering Group, added: "We're looking towards a converging future requiring us to adjust industry standards to changing market demands. By merging with the Open IPTV Forum, we're continuing to take steps to remain at the forefront of trends in the TV industry. We are excited by this opportunity and welcome the new members from OIPF who will work with us to define the next wave of TV standards."

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    AMG, Movie Favorites plot mobile OTT service

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    AMG Services and Movie Favorites have teamed up to create a mobile virtual network that will bring over-the-top (OTT) HD movies to mobiles and tablets.

    "On-demand video and OTT are poised for some jaw-dropping growth," said Jack Somerset, AMG Services' CTO. "Streaming OTT videos are projected to surpass DVD consumption by 2016. The associated advertising revenues are also going to go through the roof. It's not an opportunity we'd want to miss."

    Movie Favorites' CEO Martha Steinbeck said that the new service will focus specifically on mobile. "In 2013, the US mobile Internet advertising revenue jumped to more than $7 billion, achieving 110% growth in just one year. There's no reason to think that the growth is going to dampen anytime soon," she said.

    AMG Services said that it is already negotiating with OTT hardware manufacturers for procuring the equipment required to set up a MVNO, but said that the two aren't ruling out the option of partnering with an existing MVN operator or a telco for the venture.

    AMG Services will handle the technology side of the new video network, while Movie Favorites will take care of the media side. The new OTT video service is expected to be available in the US early next year.

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    TWC's Mike LaJoie announces retirement

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    Mike LaJoie, Time Warner Cable's executive vice president and chief technology and network operations officer, has announced that he will retire at the end of the year.

    "As many of you know, I have been planning for quite some time to retire at the end of this year, after 21 years with TWC and following my 60th birthday," LaJoie wrote in a memo to colleagues, reported by Multichannel News. "Recent events have made this decision more complicated, but after careful consideration, I intend to stay with that plan."

    He was of course referring the death of former TWC CEO Glenn Britt, who died of cancer on Wednesday (11 June). "Thus, it is with mixed emotions that I am announcing my retirement, effective 31 December," LaJoie noted.

    His focus will initially be an "orderly transition of my [technology and network operations] (TechNO) operating responsibilities". Specifically, he will retain oversight of TechNO through the end of June, and of TechNO development through the end of the third quarter. He said that Hamid Heidary, previously the CTO of NTL and Insight Communications, has agreed to lead the TWC TechNO team as a consultant as LaJoie begins to transition his role.

    But, starting in October, he plans to "focus solely on the Comcast merger".

    LaJoie began his TWC career in 1994, when he was hired as vice president of software development in the Time Warner Interactive GroupHe went on to hold a range of positions in the technology unit, becoming EVP and CTO in January 2004

    "It is hard to imagine where we would be today without Mike at the helm of our technology and network operations function. He is a true icon in this industry," said Dinni Jain, TWC's COO, said in a statement.

    The news comes just days after former CEO and chairman Glenn Britt passed away from cancer at the age of 65.

    "Sadly, discussing my career with TWC without mentioning my dear friend, Glenn Britt, would be somehow incomplete. Glenn believed in me and was a great mentor for 20 years, and my thoughts are with his wife, Barbara, at this time," LaJoie wrote in the memo.

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    WorldCall selects Verimatrix content security

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    Pakistan's WorldCall Telecom has deployed the Verimatrix Video Content Authority System (VCAS) for DVB to secure its digital cable (DVB-C) network and to support the transition to broadcast-hybrid service delivery.

    VCAS for DVB replaces WorldCall's existing content security system, which was reliant on smart cards. VCAS for DVB secures WorldCall's linear content library and associated revenue for broadcast services over its DVB-C network, including WorldCall Cable TV services, which offer a mix of drama, thriller, action, romance, news and documentaries on more than 300 channels. The service is managed via redundant headends in Karachi and Lahore and six regional headends in other cities of Pakistan. It is delivered using SandMartin BVA3006 high definition (HD) set-top boxes (STBs).

    "We chose VCAS because it integrates seamlessly with our existing resources and because of the many advantages of cardless security," said Furqan Ahman Mubarik, senior manager for engineering and planning at WorldCall. "Verimatrix is highly regarded as the leader in cardless security, and we are confident that using the VCAS multi-network architecture will allow us to cost-effectively expand our service offering to include hybrid and OTT services in the future – without requiring a significant increase in CAPEX."

    The cardless VCAS system supports future network expansion, including the addition of more advanced and flexible services, such as over-the-top (OTT) video delivery. The multi-network VCAS platform overall supports future extension to IP-centric network topologies from a single security authority.

    "It's no secret that cardless security solutions offer many benefits, including operational simplicity, reduced CAPEX and logistical advantages," said Steve Oetegenn, president at Verimatrix. "We are delighted to be working with WorldCall to help them realise these significant benefits while also providing a stable and scalable foundation for future growth."

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    Sony launches Live on YouTube app for Xperia

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    Sony has launched a new Xperia camera app for Sony Xperia Z2 customers, dubbed Live on YouTube. It allows users to broadcast up to 15 minutes of video direct to their YouTube channel from the latest Xperia handsets.


    "It's perfect for allowing would-be directors and amateur reporters to share exciting live moments with the world (or just with friends), direct from their Xperia Z2," Sony noted. "Whether you want to stream your child's first steps, broadcast your own webinar or share your best friend's wedding speech, Live on YouTube ... allows your followers and friends to see what you're seeing, precisely when you're seeing it."

    Users can share links with viewers to their finished videos, see the number of views, likes and dislikes in real time, decide which videos should be public or private and set automatic reminders for when the broadcast should stream online.

    In order to use the app, users must have a verified YouTube account that is in good standing and has not been flagged as breaching existing copyright laws.

    "This app is the next stage in the evolution we started with Social Live for Xperia Z1 in 2013," Sony said. "We've since worked hard with both our development team and external partners to bring consumers even more fun, exciting and useful apps that allow you to make the most of your Xperia smartphone."

    The app is not available in all markets, including Germany, where live streaming is not enabled on YouTube.

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    Sigma appoints Tor Braham to board

    Michelle Clancy
    | 18 June 2014

    Connected media platform provider Sigma Designs has announced that it has appointed Tor R Braham to serve as a member of the board of directors.


    "We are very excited to have Tor join our board of directors," said Thinh Tran, Sigma's president and CEO. "We will benefit from his extensive financial expertise as well as his knowledge of the technology industry. Tor has been advising technology companies on strategy and corporate development for over 30 years, and we are excited to have his level of experience and insight on our board."

    Prior to joining Sigma, Braham served as managing director and global head of technology, mergers and acquisitions for Deutsche Bank Securities. Prior to that, he served as managing director and co-head of West Coast US Technology in the M&A division of Credit Suisse First Boston. Braham was also an investment banker with UBS Securities and a lawyer at a prominent Silicon Valley law firm. Holds a BA degree from Columbia College and a JD degree from New York University School of Law. He also currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors at NetApp.

    "I am delighted to join the board of directors of Sigma Designs," said Braham. "Sigma has always been an innovative company with exciting technology and a worldwide footprint of customers. I believe I can help Sigma as it continues to focus on growing revenues in a profitable manner."

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    New exec, first-look deals for Entertainment One

    Joseph O'Halloran
    | 18 June 2014

    Film and TV content acquisition, production and distribution company Entertainment One (eOne) has beefed up its alternative programming division with a new VP of development and new deals with unscripted series producers.

    David Shaye is the new exec and will work closely with eOne TV's Tara Long, SVP of alternative programming, to build upon the company's existing slate of unscripted series by identifying promising talent and developing new and series ideas.

    Such prospective business will come from first-look agreements with individual creators and producers Kevin Healey, Riaz Patel and Ben Bitonti who have inked a deal to provide eOne's alternative programming group with additional creative resources and a direct development pipeline.

    "Over the past two years, eOne Television's alternative programming business has flourished, and we are actively building out our division to support its rapid growth," said Long. "David has a keen eye for engaging content and a deep background in working with talent who have thrived in the reality space, and we are delighted to have him join the team. We are big fans of the work of our new group of best in class creators ... we look forward to collaborating with them on a wave of new series ideas and related projects."


 

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