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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

ETL's Vortex Matrices to replace existing equipment at teleport Madley, UK. 05 February 2015. ETL Systems, a global designer and

  1. #4911
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    ETL's Vortex Matrices to replace existing equipment at teleport

    Madley, UK. 05 February 2015. ETL Systems, a global designer and manufacturer of RF distribution equipment for satellite communications, today announced it has completed an upgrade to the IPTV equipment for a Belgian telecommunications giant through a competitive tender.

    The upgrade, which replaced existing equipment at the teleport, includes ETL systems patented Vortex Matrices, offering features such as a simple ‘plug & go' installation and active, hot-swap of components.

    The move sees ETL Systems replace existing legacy equipment which has been operating efficiently for over 10 years. The upgrade also added extra capacity and flexibility to the broadcaster.

    "We are pleased to be working on this project which will see some of the very best RF distribution equipment fitted at the teleport," said Andrew Bond, Sales Director, ETL Systems. "With the significant advancements in the V series matrix family, telecoms operators can carry out their operations with unparalleled reliability and resilience."

    ETL Systems' Vortex Matrices will be distributed in partnership with DigiNet Belgium, a major provider of technical solutions and professional equipment for the broadcast and telecom markets. For further information about ETL Systems visit ETL Systems - Designers and manufacturers of RF distribution equipment - ETL Systems.

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    Kabel Deutschland records strong demand for fast internet

    The customers of Germany’s largest cable operator Kabel Deutschland signed a total of 262,000 new contracts for internet and telephony services in the last three months of 2014 (136,000 internet and 126,000 telephony contracts).

    The majority of broadband customers opt for internet and telephony bundle packages and prefer an internet subscription providing up to 100 Mbps download speed, the cable operator announced at the presentation of its latest financial figures in Munich.

    The Vodafone subsidiary commenced offering a high-speed service doubling its maximum internet data rate to 200 Mbps in the first regions in November 2014.

    Turnover rose compared with the same period in 2013 by 6.5% to €513 million while the EBITDA climbed by 2.4% to €236 million.

    Below the line, Kabel Deutschland achieved a profit of €73 million – an increase by €40 million compared with the last three months of 2013.

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    Dutch court denies access to illegal downloaders adresses

    An Amsterdam court has rejected a demand from a German porn company to hand over names and addresses of illegal downloaders on the UPC Nederland network.

    UPC refused to hand over customer data to the German company Belirex, who claims to have the rights to the adult movies. The court ruled that UPC does not need to release the names of customers who have illegally downloaded porn.

    The case before the Amsterdam court was the first instance in which a rights holder has tried to obtain data after the introduction of a law against illegal downloads in the Netherlands.

    The verdict of the Amsterdam court has mainly to do with uncertainty about the actual broadcast rights. Belirex owns the brand Inflagranti, which owns the copyrights of the movies.

    However, the court questions whether the broadcast rights indeed belong to this company. There is also uncertainty about the list of IP addresses that Belirex handed over to UPC. The company did not convince the court that these are actually the illegal downloaders.

    The court also dismissed UPC’s defense that the data required by Belirex are sensitive data and that it has to protect the customer.

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    Bramly new general manager FIC France

    Fox International Channels (FIC) has appointed Olivier Bramly as the new general manager of FIC France and French speaking Belgium, Switzerland, Africa and DROM-COM territories starting April 2015.

    Olivier will have direct responsibility for all business areas including affiliate and content distribution, programming, advertising sales, marketing and production.

    Olivier will report to Adrian Herzkovich, EVP of FIC Benelux and France, who said of his appointment: “Olivier had a very successful career in different divisions of Eurosport, with multi-territorial responsibilities mainly focused on affiliate sales. This extensive experience in television will be fundamental in defining our strategic business plan across the French market and I am thrilled to have him on board”.

    Most recently, Olivier was senior EVP, Global Distribution for Eurosport, with full responsibility for affiliate in EMEA and Asia/Pacific. Other previous roles at Eurosport include Director of Distribution & Development for Southern, Central & Eastern Europe and Managing Director of Eurosport Spain.

    Olivier Bramly replaces Frederic Chevance as head of FIC France, who has recently communicated his decision to leave the company to start a new career.

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    Hungarian TV ad dispute end in sight

    Hungary is set to back down over a controversial TV ad tax as a direct result of pressure from the European Commission.

    Quoted by BBJ, János Lázár, the country’s cabinet chief, said “The Hungarian government needed to decide whether to be involved in a legal issue with an uncertain outcome or to participate in an beneficial agreement”.

    He added that the EC had not criticised the tax itself, but rather the volume. In Austria, for instance, the ad tax of 5% is currently the highest in the EU.

    Lázár confirmed that he had been in talks with Bertlesmann, the owner of RTL Klub, the Hungarian broadcaster most affected by the tax, since November.

    The tax, introduced in legislation passed last summer, currently requires RTL Klub to pay 50% of its ad revenues to the government.

    Significantly, the Hungarian government’s decision to reduce the tax to what will be a flat rate – it is currently applied progressively – is not believed to be dependent on RTL Klub becoming less critical of the government in its programming.

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    Russia reacts to satellite failure

    Russia has moved quickly to minimise the effects of an accident on the Express-AM33 satellite, which happened at 22.35 Moscow time on February 3.

    In a statement, the Ministry of Telecom and Mass Communications (Minsvyaz) says that the system of extra switching, developed by the FSUE Russian television and broadcasting network, started to operate within a few minutes of the accident.

    As a result, TV channels were switched to the Yamal-401 satellite.

    They include the First Channel, Russia’s most popular broadcaster, which covered 90% of viewers. It is now planned to cover 90% of the viewers affected – a total of 13.5 million – in one day.

    Minsvyaz adds that Nikolay Nikiforov, the minister of telecom and mass communications, was immediately informed about the accident.

    The ministry created an emergency operations centre, consisting of working groups of the FSUE Satellite communications, Russian television and broadcasting network and television channels, broadcast via this satellite.

    Express-AM33 has been operational since April 14, 2008 and has a life of 10 years.

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    Sky to develop Boxed sets; caution on 4k

    Sky plans to further develop its Boxed Sets offering after revealing an increase of nearly 50% on the number of downloads and streams in 2013.

    There will also be a refreshen of the NOW TV brand, while the Restart concept recently introduced in Italy will be extended to the UK later this year.

    At Wednesday’s quarterly results Sky said that its connected TV platform has broken its own previous record, in the UK and Ireland, with almost 2 billion download and streaming requests made by its customers during 2014 – 60 requests per second.

    There are now 6.5 million customers connected to Sky On Demand, and 5.8 million registered users for mobile TV service Sky Go in the UK and Ireland.

    A relative latecomer to Boxed Sets, Sky now offers over 130 box sets of the latest shows.

    “It’s driving take up of both Sky Go and HD and is going very well so far. Customers tell us they want quality as well as quantity, so we’ll add more of the latest best titles, and we’ll extend our licence period so they can watch for longer,” said Sky chief executive Jeremy Darroch, adding that there was an opportunity to establish Boxed Sets as a new premium offering in their own right with increased marketing support and a stronger brand identity.

    Darroch knocked back the idea of a new 4k ready box – reported as Project Ethan – explaining the rate of change was different to what it was ten or even five years ago. Rather than replace the entire set-top box inventory it was more likely that changes were made to the software stack.

    “Ultra HD is TBD – it does really well on big screens, but less impactful on smaller screens,” said Darroch. “The jury is still out as to how big an idea it will be, we’re thinking about the box power, how we build into the software stack and the broadcast infrastructure that goes alongside that.”

    NOW TV, Sky’s pay-as-you-go service is receiving a revamped set-top, again based on the Roku platform, in which Sky has a small investment. It will also receive a new logo and an above the line advertising campaign.

    Sky has made NOW TV a distinctive product; 80% of NOW TV users have never considered a Sky subscription.

    The AdSmart platform is also being developed; customers in the UK will start to see tailored promotions as well as the subsitutional ads based on segments such as market groups and postcodes.

    Of the international markets, Italy with a higher number of connected boxes is more likely to see the service ahead of Germany.

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    Russia still troubling MTG

    MTG says it is continuing to explore its options after the introduction of a law, banning advertising on pay-TV channels, was brought in earlier this year.

    In the last few days an amendment to the law, allowing ads on channels where there is 75% Russian content has been introduced, and is awaiting presidential signature.

    “We are working with a range of potential solutions, in order to best protect the interests of stakeholders in these entertainment businesses that we have built into the most popular in Russia,” said CEO Jřrgen Madsen Lindemann.

    Sales across the Baltic markers were up as in line with the local markets the advertising market expanded in Estonia and Latvia, but was down in Lituania.

    The pay business has seen its mini-pay channels decline by 3% year on year, when the contribution from Trace, acquired in June 2014, is excluded.

    Russia is excluded from the Baltic figure and its operation CTC Media reports after MTG.

    MTG’s Nordic pay-TV business continues to be driven by the expansion of the On Demand Viaplay platform. In a market where the linear market is arguably in decline, premium subscribers remain stable at around 1 million – split 60/40 in favour of satellite homes – though premium satellite ARPU was up 2% at SEK 5,255 after recent price increases.

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    NPO App adds Chromecast

    Dutch public broadcaster NPO has issued a new update for the iOS NPO app, which is now available in the App store.

    With the update, developed by Stoneroos, the app is now compatible with Chromecast. Stoneroos built the new function for both the iPad and the iPhone.

    Both free and premium streams from the NPO app can now be screened on the television set using the Chromecast dongle.

    The app, that also features live synchronisation for use as a second screen, already supported Apple AirPlay-function.

    The Chromecast feature can be used for all catch-up programmes, the streaming live channels and the premium (paid for) selection in NPO Plus.

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    Swisscom TV grows by 16.5% in 2014

    Switzerland’s telco Swisscom has acquired 165,000 new customers for its IPTV platform Swisscom TV last year.

    The total customer number thereby rose by 16.5% to 1.17 million.

    The Swisscom TV 2.0 service which launched in early 2014 and offers additional features recorded a total of 306,000 customers at the end of 2014.

    The number of fixed-line broadband internet customers rose by 79,000 to 1.89 million in 2014.


 

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