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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Sky wins Turkish copyright dispute BSkyB has won a court case to stop the Turkish TV channel operators Atlas and

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    Sky wins Turkish copyright dispute

    BSkyB has won a court case to stop the Turkish TV channel operators Atlas and T-Medya from using the brand name ‘SkyTurk’.

    According to Sky, the decision was finalised on April 10 and published on June 18.

    It adds that a court in Istanbul found that Atlas and T-Medya were not authorised to use the ‘Sky’ brand for television or video services in Turkey and had infringed Sky’s trademark.

    Sky operates under the ‘Sky’ brand in the UK and Ireland and also licenses the brand to other international Sky pay-TV businesses, such as Sky Italia and Sky Deutschland. The SkyTurk channel has been rebranded and is now operating under the name ‘360’.

    Sky began taking legal action against Atlas and T-Medya in 2003 before initiating trademark infringement proceedings in 2006. It has previously successfully defended the ‘Sky’ trademark in court cases in France, Italy, Malta, Thailand and Ghana.

    Commenting on the development, Celia Pendery, director of international intellectual property, Sky, said: “We regard any unauthorised use of the ‘Sky’ brand name as a clear infringement of our trade mark rights. We remain vigilant in protecting our brand and will continue to take action against companies that seek to use our trade marks without consent.”

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    Zattoo launches OTT app on Google’s Chromecast

    Internet TV platform Zattoo has launched an OTT app for Google’s TV stick Chromecast across Europe.

    The owners of TV sets can thereby take the live-streams of TV channels onto their TV screen even if the TV set is not a connected TV model with internet access. Smartphone, tablet or laptop can be used as a remote control for TV reception via Zattoo.

    Chromecast (Google)With the Zattoo app, DTT or cable households gain access to TV channels otherwise not available to them, for example HD channels. The Chromecast stick which Google rolled out in Europe in March 2014 is plugged into the TV set’s HDMI slot and connected to the internet via Wi-Fi.

    Zattoo’s Chromecast app is available in all European markets in which Zattoo is present, Jörg Meyer, vice-president content & consumer at Zattoo, told Broadband TV News. “Chromecast is a convenient way to use Zattoo on all customary TV sets,” said Meyer. “For Zattoo, the Chromecast support is an important factor in further establishing internet TV as an equal distribution pathway for TV content next to cable, IPTV, satellite and DTT.”

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    BBC opens new Latin American headquarters

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 19 June 2014

    BBC Worldwide has officially inaugurated its new Latin American headquarters in Miami. The facilities will serve as the hub for all regional and US Hispanic operations and initiatives.

    The launch event was hosted by Fred Medina, executive vice-president and managing director, BBC Worldwide Latin America, and Paul Dempsey, president of global markets.

    The headquarters will be home to a team of more than 50 multimedia professionals spanning areas such as channel distribution, content, formats and digital sales as well as licensing and merchandising. In the upcoming months, the headquarters will also house BBC Mundo, the BBC's Spanish-language news service.

    "The opening of this regional trading hub represents a natural extension of 80 years of presence in Latin America and enables us to continue to increase our footprint in the region," said Medina. "We have created this unique state-of-the art business environment where all the areas of BBC Worldwide Latin America operations are very well represented. BBC Worldwide doing business in more than 200 countries, and from here, we will lead operations in 18 countries."

    "We have big ambitions for Latin America and the new headquarters are our launch pad. When you take the power of a global company like the BBC, one of the biggest content producers and distributors in the world, and you combine it with the expertise of the team here, who really understands the audiences they are serving, there is now doubt that the next stage of our journey is to become an even bigger force in the region," added Paul Dempsey.

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    Fluendo teams up with The Fraunhofer Institute to support 4K

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 19 June 2014

    Multimedia and video company Fluendo is partnering with The Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute, an application-oriented research organisation, to extend video coding support to its Oneplay suite of solutions using the latter's decoder.

    The Barcelona-based company has purchased the institute's H.265 decoder, through which it will improve its HEVC high-efficiency video coding. The standard is the new compression standard format for HD video playback, UltraHD 4K playback and will be a successor to the H.264/MPEG4-AVC video format.

    The Fraunhofer Institute is one of the main contributors to the HEVC standard, which achieves a 50% bitrate reduction compared to H.264, all while maintaining the same subjective video quality.

    "Supporting HEVC through our solutions is the next logical step for our customers who want the best HD video playback capabilities," said Muriel Moscardini, CEO of Fluendo. "By adding Fraunhofer's decoder to Fluendo's proven multimedia player, Oneplay becomes one of the few media players in the world that is able to support HEVC, which we expect to be the future de facto video format globally."

    Benjamin Bross, editor at Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute, added: "With the addition of our HEVC decoder, Fluendo's player will be able to support 4K, the new ultra high definition resolution currently emerging in digital video," said Benjamin Bross, H.265/MPEG-HEVC specification text main editor of Fraunhofer Heinrich Hertz Institute. "We are happy that Fluendo chose our technology to use widely in the different markets that the company operates in."

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    Argentineans are cutting the cord

    Juan Fernandez Gonzalez
    | 19 June 2014

    Cord-cutting seems to be extending throughout the pay-TV market worldwide, and Argentina is no exception with 650,000 users watching TV through the Internet, according to the latest report from consultancy firm Carrier y Asociados.

    According to the report, Argentinean cord-cutters are watching online versions of free-to-air (FTA) channels and paying for over-the-top (OTT) streaming services such as Netflix, Onvideo and Arnet Play. The report also finds an even higher demand for video services through Internet platforms such as Pop Corn Time or Cuevana.

    Streaming services are the most popular among the cord-cutters in Argentina, being used in 67% of those homes which have broadband and no pay-TV. 55% of homes also watch TV through the FTA channels' sites, 37% download content and 19% pay for an OTT platform. And, says the report, the trend is more noticeable the younger the family is.

    For the consultancy agency, the figures send a clear message to pay-TV operators: business is changing and Internet services are going to be essential.

    The publication of these findings coincides with Argentina's recent announcement forbidding the telcos to offer broadcasting services. Following the request of the Argentinean association of cable operators, ATVC, Cablevisión, Multicanal and Telecentro, the country's Supreme Court has ruled that the telcos can't offer VOD or OTT services through their data and fibre networks

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    Middle East readies for MBC's Arab Idol 3
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    Rebecca Hawkes
    | 06 September 2014

    The third season of Arab Idol is set to launch on MBC on Friday 5 September, with the Middle East broadcaster hoping to replicate the success of the previous localised incarnations of FremantleMedia's international hit TV format.

    Last year Arab Idol 2 generated an audience of over 100 million viewers across the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). The show's winner, Gaza's Mohammed Assaf, gained global prominence and was subsequently by the United Nations as its first youth ambassador to Palestinian refugee camps in the territories and in neighbouring countries.

    In MBC's words: "In a zero to hero phenomenon, Arab Idol nurtured these talents and Assaf went on to become an international sensation."

    In preparation for the new season, auditions for Arab Idol 3 have taken place in Berlin, Paris, Algeria and Palestine, among other locations – ahead of the live theatre-based auditions that will be broadcast weekly across the Arab world.

    Among a range of social media options, viewers will, for the first time this season, be able to engage in a weekly chat with contestants through the Arab Idol app.

    Arab Idol Season 3 will be broadcast on both MBC1 and MBC MASR simultaneously, every Friday and Saturday at 6.05pm GMT and 9.05pm KSA.

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    Moby Group launches Iraqi channel Lana TV
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    Rebecca Hawkes
    | 06 September 2014

    The Dubai-based Moby Group has added a new free-to-air Iraqi entertainment channel called Lana TV ('For Us' TV) to its satellite bouquet.

    The channel, based in Baghdad, will include content from a range of genres including international drama, romance, action, thrillers and comedy, as well as local content.

    "Lana TV is an exciting channel managed by Iraqis for Iraqis and will offer unique locally produced and international programmes. We believe in the long-term positive future of Iraq and are confident that Lana TV will play a leading role in inspiring and entertaining Iraqis at home and abroad," said Saad Mohseni, chairman & CEO of Moby Group.

    Saif Alhakim, managing director of Lana TV, added: "Lana TV will have a very unique offering in Iraq's media and entertainment landscape and the Lana TV team in Baghdad is thrilled to be a part of this and part of the Moby Group platform."

    Lana TV programmes include the Turkish drama series the Karadag Family and Golden Hearts, a Croatian romance produced by Nova TV.

    It will be available across the Middle East and North Africa via regional satellites Nilesat 102 at 7° West and Yahsat 1A at 52.5° East.

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    StarTimes launches DTH service for Kenya
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    Rebecca Hawkes
    | 06 September 2014

    China's StarTimes has launched a digital direct-to-home (DTH) pay-TV service in Kenya via the SES 5 satellite at 5° East, to rival existing operators MultiChoice and Zuku TV.

    The new StarSat service, offering almost 100 local and international channels, will compliment StarTimes' existing digital terrestrial TV (DTT) service, which launched in Kenya two years ago. The company has notched up 272,594 DTT subscribers according to data from the Communications Authority of Kenya.

    "The introduction of StarSat gives Kenyans a choice within their preferred pay television platform to access the latest news, entertainment, sports, movies, documentaries, music and children's content for that enriched television viewing experience for the whole family at pocket-friendly installation and monthly subscription costs," said Hans Han, vice president, marketing, StarTimes.

    The company has "taken measures" to bolster its after-sales service, he added, saying it will ensure "subscribers do not face installation or activation challenges on acquiring either of our pay television or free-to-air services."

    A high definition (HD) StarSat set-top box plus satellite dish will initially retail at KES5,600 (US$63) with a month's free access to the Super Bouquet thrown in, worth KES2,500 ($28). Four tariff plans will be offered.

    StarTimes, which runs digital television networks in over ten African countries, recently announced it is to establish a $78.6 million regional headquarters in the Kenyan capital of Nairobi.

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    Canal+ group deploys Frog by Wyplay

    Canal+ Group has updated all its digital terrestrial Le Cube STBs with the Frog by Wyplay software, customised by the Canal+ team, turning the boxes into hybrid set-tops with OTT access.

    All Canal+ DTT subscribers who will now benefit from a new HD HTML5 user interface, access to the complete range of Canal+ / Canalsat channels through OTT via internet in addition to channels broadcast over the digital terrestrial network.

    A single and intuitive point of access to the MyCanal web and mobile portal allowing subscribers to find all programmes and use the associated services including Canal+ and Canalsat on-demand catch-up, TV Guide, Eurękapersonalised recommendation engine, remote recording and navigation, and the ability to re-start an ongoing programme from the beginning.

    “Thanks to this co-development based on Frog, we were able to improve our subscribers’ TV experience as well as gain a greater degree of flexibility to update our set-top boxes,” said Frederic Vincent, technical and system information director at Canal+.

    “In this ongoing partnership, we are now co-developing the Satellite STB software update based on Frog for a 2015 update, as well as the development and market launch of our future next generation devices.”

    “I am very pleased with the tight collaboration with the Canal+ Group that has enabled them to innovate and evolve their products in an autonomous manner.” added Jacques Bourgninaud, Wyplay CEO.

    “This deployment by Canal+ is a clear example of the virtues of the Frog by Wyplay model where operators can now re-gain the freedom and control over their future.”

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    Fashion Television rolls out in Europe

    Fashion Television is launching its European feed on the Astra orbital position of 19.2 degrees East, as well as on Eutelsat’s Hotbird.

    The broadcaster took over the frequencies formerly occupied by New York based Fashion One as a result of an agreement between the two networks.

    “Fashion Television is excited about its launch in Europe, especially on an existing channel position that already has many fashion enthusiasts tuned into as a top destination for fashion and lifestyle content,” said Ralph Siebenaler, who spearheads the international expansion of Fashion Television.

    Together with the launch of the channel, Fashion Television set up its international headquarters in London where all European activities are coordinated under a new management team.

    Fashion Television is Canada’s first and only 24-hour English language fashion channel dedicated to the world of art, architecture, photography, and design.

    “We are excited about the agreement with Fashion Television, which concludes our strategy to move to a paid only model, and at the same time allows our viewers to continue to enjoy the high quality of basic fashion content that Fashion One has started out with,” said Ashley Jordan, CEO of Fashion One.

    “Over the last years, Fashion One has moved from a purebred fashion channel into lifestyle, reality content, news and more expensive and higher-end productions clearly beyond a free-to-air business model.”


 

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