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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

StarHub TV unveils Tamil on-demand channel DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 09 January 2015 Singapore pay-TV platform StarHub TV is launching a

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    StarHub TV unveils Tamil on-demand channel

    DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 09 January 2015


    Singapore pay-TV platform StarHub TV is launching a new Tamil entertainment subscription video-on-demand (SVOD) channel called Varnam on 10 January 2015.

    A mix of movies, awards presentations, dramas, and reality programmes will be available on demand in Tamil for the first time in Singapore. English subtitles will accompany each show.

    Varnam will join the six current Tamil channels on StarHub TV: Sun TV, Sun Music, Vijay, Vannathirai, V Thamizh and Zee Tamizh.

    "With an increasing demand for greater viewing flexibility, Varnam will not only entertain Tamil audiences anytime they desire, but also give them the choice of enjoying Varnam as part of the Thangam Migai pack at no additional cost, or on a standalone basis," said Lee Soo Hui, head of media business unit, StarHub Subscribe to our cable and internet bundles today | StarHub

    "Delivering a good mix of the latest Masala movies, fun variety programmes and intriguing drama series, Varnam will be a welcome entertainment option for our Tamil customers," she added.

    Programmes on Varnam include SIIMA 2014, an awards ceremony which saw the best South Indian movie stars gather in Kuala Lumpur; Anjaan, a 2014 action-packed blockbuster movie starring Suriya; and Velaiyilla Pattathari, a film about an unemployed engineer who overcomes the odds to find success. StarHub TV says it will gradually introduce more locally produced shows over time to add Singapore flavour.

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    Freedish to increase DTH channels with platform upgrade

    DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 09 January 2015


    India's public direct-to-home (DTH) service Freedish is migrating to a new platform after midnight on 9 January to increase capacity.

    The Doordarshan-run satellite service will deliver 64 MPEG-2 TV channels from the 59 it has previously carried, while two more radio channels will be added to the current 22, following the upgrade.

    Freedish has previously announced it will soon carry 112 TV channels, with on-going e-auctions to attract more broadcasters to the pan-India free-to-air satellite platform.

    To access the new channels on the upgraded platform, Freedish viewers need to edit the transponder parameter and retune and scan their set-top box.

    "DD Freedish viewers can get further information regarding retuning/rescanning their set-top boxes on Doordarshan's official website ddindia.gov.in," said a company statement.

    "Viewers/subscribers who do not rescan their set-top boxes shall to continue to get only ten channels for a period of seven days only, from the date of upgradation. Out of these ten channels, one channel is an informative channel which will show the detailed procedure for retuning the set-top boxes."

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    Hathway Cable looks to raise foreign investment

    DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 09 January 2015


    Indian multi-system operator (MSO) Hathway Cable & Datacom has received board approval to increase the foreign investment limit from the current 49% to 74%.

    In an announcement to the Bombay Stock Exchange, Hathway said it wished to increase its foreign investment limit "by foreign institutional investors, foreign portfolio investors, etc," subject to receipt of approval of the Foreign Investment Promotion Board of India, Ministry of Finance (FIPB) and/or the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).

    Earlier this month the cable TV and broadband operator became the first Indian MSO to have crossed the US$1 billion mark in terms of enterprise valuation, according to IndianTelevision.com.

    In 2012, the Indian Government endorsed the recommendations of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to raise the foreign direct investment (FDI) limit from 49% to 74% for India's cable, direct-to-home and teleport broadcasting sector.

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    Genstar to Acquire Telestream

    DetailsMichelle Clancy | 09 January 2015


    Private equity firm Genstar Capital plans to acquire Telestream, which offers live and on-demand digital video tools and workflow solutions.

    Telestream products span the entire digital media lifecycle, including media ingest, post production, transcoding; captioning, multiplatform delivery and live streaming; as well as automation and orchestration of the entire workflow.

    "Genstar has been following Telestream closely, and this acquisition is consistent with our strategy of investing in vertical market software companies," said Genstar managing director Eli P Weiss.

    "Telestream is a leader in its market that has posted profitable growth since its founding. As even more content is generated and viewed on more devices, we believe the company will continue its demonstrated growth trajectory, and we will support Telestream's experienced and successful management team to expand organic growth via new product releases and pursue add-on acquisitions."

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    Almost half of all millennials prefer multiscreen viewing

    DetailsMichelle Clancy | 09 January 2015


    Strike one for the rise of multiscreen behaviour: just 55% of millennials now use TVs as their primary viewing platform, while streaming devices – laptops, tablets and smartphones – are poised to dominate their viewing preferences.

    While the television continues to provide the best quality picture and viewing experience, the way content is being discovered and consumed is changing dramatically, especially for millennials. That's according to the preliminary results of the second NATPE|Content First and the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA) joint research study on consumers' attitudes toward television viewing.

    "Our study confirms that the paradigm for TV content discovery has changed dramatically with increased availability and use of TV content streaming options," said NATPE president and CEO Rod Perth. "With more than seven in ten viewers in broadband households having streamed full-length TV programmes in the past six months, there are opportunities for networks and content producers to reach and build audiences."

    Overall the joint study shows a decline in the amount of time spent watching live television programmes during their scheduled air-time. This is particularly true of the younger, millennial demographic which has some distinctive, common characteristics, including the regular use of multiple sources of programme content.

    In fact, the millennial demographic group ( 13-34) is comfortable using many different sources of TV programme content and consequently are significantly more likely to consume full-length TV programmes from a streaming source (84% streamed in the past six months) than live TV programming at its original air time (54%), or recorded content from a DVR (33%).

    "While the vast majority of consumers continue to watch television programming on their TV, many consumers, particularly millennials, increasingly are turning to a variety of devices to view their TV content," said CEA president and CEO Gary Shapiro. "This has profound implications for the way CE manufacturers market their products as they try to reach diverse markets."

    Millennials also value their Netflix subscriptions more than broadcast or cable. In the study, 51% consider subscription to Netflix "very valuable," compared to 42% for broadcast channels, and 36% for cable subscriptions.

    Gen Xers meanwhile love video-on-demand (VOD) and DVRs. Among those in this age group who have access to VOD, 76% use their VOD service once a week or more often, similar to SVOD usage. The study found DVRs are primarily used to avoid commercials, while VOD is for convenience.

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    4KTV streaming readiness rises by double digits globally

    DetailsMichelle Clancy | 09 January 2015


    The ability to adequately stream 4K/Ultra HD video content has increased globally according to Akamai Technologies' Third Quarter 2014 State of the Internet Report.

    For the second consecutive quarter, the global average connection speed remained above the 4Mbps 'broadband' threshold, however it saw a slight decline in the third quarter of 2014, dropping 2.8% to 4.5Mbps. Even so, the report found that six of the top ten countries saw increases in global average connection speeds, and all of the top ten remained well above the 10Mbps 'high broadband' threshold.

    Among those increasing in average connection speed quarter-over-quarter, Singapore experienced the largest rise (12.2Mbps), an 18% improvement. The smallest growth was in Japan (15Mbps), which was only up 0.8% from the second quarter. In addition, Ireland (13.9Mbps) joined Singapore in seeing an increase of 10% or more from the previous quarter. Yearly increases were seen in 129 qualifying countries/regions, with rates ranging from 150% in Jersey (9.7Mbps) down to a modest 0.2% in Ecuador (3.6Mbps).

    "One need only look to the sheer number of connected device- and smart home-related announcements that came out of the 2015 International CES to see that consumers are continuing to adopt and expect more from connected technology and services," said David Belson, editor of the report. "The strong year-over-year growth trends illustrated in this quarter's report shows that the Internet is evolving and expanding to meet the growing demands of our increasingly connected lifestyles."

    The report also found that as a consequence, 52 countries/regions qualify as '4K-ready' for the quarter, and 12% of the global connections were at or above the 15Mbps threshold necessary to sustain 4K Ultra HD streaming. While down 2.8% quarter-over-quarter, readiness increased 32% year-over-year.

    South Korea remained the country with the highest level of 4K readiness, with two-thirds of its connections to Akamai at or above 15Mbps.

    It should be noted that the findings do not account for other readiness factors, including availability of 4K-encoded content or 4K-capable televisions and media players.

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    ZDFNeo to examine gender roles

    DetailsMichelle Clancy | 09 January 2015


    German public broadcaster ZDFNeo has commissioned a season of Armoza's social experiment Re-Gender, in partnership with SEO Entertainment. Locally named Sexchange, the factual format explores gender stereotypes.

    Previously aired on Israel's Channel 10, Re-Gender is a provocative social experiment that gives five men and women the chance to really experience life as the opposite gender, exploring both their own nature and that of the opposite sex. What do men really think? What do women really want? The five participants will go through life-changing transformations – whether a staunch feminist who will learn to see the man's perspective or a self-acclaimed misogynist who, both physically and metaphorically, will find himself in a woman's shoes – and will never think about gender roles in the same way again.

    "The field of gender related topics is a massive and absolute relevant social issue these days," said Uwe von Grafenstein & Gillad Osterer, managing partners of SEO Entertainment GmbH."Sexchange has huge appeal to all kinds of audiences combined with the clever reality TV storytelling, which results in a TV show that both entertains the viewers and gives them a deep insight into the mechanism of a society."

    ZDFneo recently partnered with Armoza on the first season of a celebrity interview format with a twist, dubbed How To Be, which led to a 40% increase in share for the channel.

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    NCTC re-ups content carriage with Discovery

    DetailsMichelle Clancy | 09 January 2015


    The National Cable Television Cooperative (NCTC) and Discovery Communications have announced a multi-year distribution agreement to allow the continued delivery of Discovery's family of 13 US networks. The deal gives participating NCTC member companies TV everywhere rights through subscriber authentication on multiple devices.

    As part of the long-term agreement, NCTC member customers will have access to Discovery's US networks including Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery, Science, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, Discovery Family Channel, American Heroes Channel, Discovery Fit & Health (to become Discovery Life Channel on 15 January), Discovery en Español, Discovery Familia, Velocity and Destination America.

    "For 30 years, Discovery has been committed to producing content that satisfies viewers' curiosity and delivering that award-winning programming to operators both small and large," said Eric Phillips, president of domestic distribution for Discovery Communications. "This renewed agreement is a testament to that commitment and ensures customers of NCTC member companies will continue, for many years ahead, to have access to Discovery's unmatched family of networks."

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    Maldives awash with Internet TV service launches

    DetailsRebecca Hawkes | 28 January 2015



    Maldives telco Dhiraagu has launched an IPTV television service just days after competitor Ooredoo Maldives launched a similar live TV service for its subscribers.


    DhiraaguTV provides live local TV channels to both mobile and fixed broadband users via the company's data networks or ADSL connections.

    Channels currently available include Television Maldives, Raajje TV, DhiTV, VTV, SunTV and Channel 13, though more are promised in the future.

    Ooredoo's live TV service meanwhile offers Television Maldives, Raajje TV, Channel M, MvTv, Channel One and Atoll TV to users of its 3G and 4G LTE mobile networks.

    Dhiraagu's manager of marketing broadband and data services, Mohamed Fahir, said the company wanted to offer its customers a simple way to view television content across a number of smart devices.

    "This is just the initial phase of our TV service; we will be further expanding the service to offer quality entertainment to be enjoyed anywhere and anytime," said Fahir.

    The Ooredoo Live TV service has been launched in conjunction with PlayCast Maldives, which obtained a licence to provide cable TV services via IPTV in December 2014. The live TV service will be now available to all Ooredoo customers without any additional subscription fee until 28 February 2015.

    "Ooredoo customers can now enjoy their favourite TV shows and catch up with news on-the-go. Whether you're on the ferry, having coffee at your favourite café or even spending the weekend on a picnic island with friends, now you can enjoy the best of football matches, TV news or entertainment programmes on Live TV, directly on your smartphone," said SP Sarathy, commercial director, Ooredoo.

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    Kyrgyzstan DTT service launches after Eutelsat, RPO RMTR tie-up

    Details Rebecca Hawkes | 28 January 2015


    The Kyrgyz Republic's public broadcast RPO RMTR has signed a multi-year deal with Eutelsat to provide a nationwide free-to-air (FTA) digital TV service ahead of analogue switch-off this June.


    RPT RMTR is using the high power service area of the Eutelsat 70B satellite to broadcast four national TV channels to digital terrestrial television (DTT) towers and also direct-to-home (DTH) in areas beyond the reach of terrestrial signals.

    One in five of the 1.2 million TV homes in the Kyrgyz Republic are already equipped with a satellite dish, with the country's mountainous terrain making satellite well suited for broadcasting digital television, according to the France-based satellite operator.

    "Access to Eutelsat 70B's premium coverage over the Kyrgyz Republic transforms us into a nationwide provider of digital broadcast services. By having a hybrid satellite/DTT network, we will achieve full digital coverage in time for analogue switch-off in June this year," said Bakit Sharshembiev, CEO, RPO RMTR.

    The digital platform from RPO RMTR, which launched commercially in January 2015, has been in test transmission since November 2014. The bouquet is expected to expand to 16 TV channels and eight radio stations by the year-end.

    Ainura Temirbekova, Vice Minister of Culture, Information and Tourism of the Kyrgyz Republic, said: "We are excited about the fruitful cooperation between RPO RMTR and Eutelsat for the successful implementation of digital satellite TV. This project for the broadcasting of the Kyrgyz Republic's public channels via Eutelsat 70B satellite allows us to cover the entire territory of the country. The population of the Kyrgyz Republic is now able to receive all public TV and radio channels anywhere in our country."

    Michel Azibert, chief commercial & development officer, Eutelsat, added: "This is a significant opportunity for Central Asia as Eutelsat's 70° East position can take its place as a broadcasting point of reference in the region, with premium reach of the Kyrgyz Republic as well as Kazakhstan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan."


 

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