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Thread: Daily Satellite TV News

Discovery, Cablevision renew distribution deal Discovery Communications and Cablevision Systems have renewed their US distribution agreement. The new multi-platform deal

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    Discovery, Cablevision renew distribution deal

    Discovery Communications and Cablevision Systems have renewed their US distribution agreement.


    The new multi-platform deal allows Cablevision subscribers to have continued access to Discovery's family of 13 US networks, and incorporates TV everywhere rights through subscriber authentication.

    The deal covers Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery, Science, OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, American Heroes Channel, Velocity, Destination America, Discovery Family Channel, Discovery Life Channel, Discovery en Español and Discovery Familia.

    "Investing in world-class content that satisfies viewers' curiosity has always been Discovery's top priority," said Eric Phillips, president of domestic distribution for Discovery Communications. "This renewed agreement speaks to the value of that investment, as well as the track record of success and continued strength of Discovery's brands. We look forward to continuing our strong partnership with Cablevision and to bringing their subscribers the high quality, original content they've come to expect from our portfolio of networks."

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    Imagine finalises RGB acquisition

    Imagine Communications has finalised the acquisition of RGB Networks, representing its fourth acquisition in 12 months.


    "Like those before it, this transaction advances our leadership position in video infrastructure, advertising management and workflow solutions," said Charlie Vogt, CEO at Imagine. "RGB Networks' technology, people and customers complement and accelerate our vision and roadmap defined by IP, software, cloud and multiscreen. Our goal and mission is to overcome the technical barriers that currently constrain our customers' creativity and imagination."

    In 2014, the company released a hybrid SDI/IP platform, the Magellan SDN Orchestrator, and introduced VersioCloud, an integrated IP-enabled cloud playout platform, and Zenium, an advanced workflow management system. Vogt said that Imagine saw double-digit growth in 2014, and 13% year-over-year growth in new orders.

    "In 2015, the convergence of video, mobility and the Internet brings our industry to an inflection point," said Vogt. "To monetise their services and capture market share, our customers will need to migrate away from inflexible, proprietary infrastructures and adopt IP-enabled, cloud-based, software-defined networks and workflows to deliver top-line growth and bottom-line results."

    He added: "Our ongoing investments in innovation and leadership in these areas are helping our customers ease the transition to these more flexible, next-generation solutions."

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    Univision subsidiary to screen Hispanic content from The Scene

    Flama, the multi-platform digital network owned and operated by Univision Communications, is to become available on Condé Nast Entertainment's digital video network The Scene.


    The deal brings more than 100 Flama original episodes to the platform, with new content delivered weekly, and leaves an open window for co-developed projects by the two companies.

    "The Scene represents the best in premium digital video and our curated programming line-up is resonating with our audience of upscale millennial viewers," said Dawn Ostroff, president Condé Nast Entertainment.

    "The addition of the Flama original series broadens our reach among millennial Hispanic viewers and brings a distinct voice to our growing collection of next-generation storytellers and entertainers," she added.

    Since launching on YouTube in December 2013 and as a stand-alone destination in April 2014, Flama has produced over 20 original series and its content has been acquired by platforms including Hulu.

    "Through select top-tier media partners like Flama and its own media properties, Condé Nast Entertainment is building an exciting new platform with The Scene," said Steven Benanav, general manager of Flama Flama. "We are thrilled to expand the reach of Flama on The Scene as it represents yet another place our audience can discover our original content starring some of today's most popular digital talent."

    The Scene is a digital video storytelling network which features over 100 original digital series from Condé Nast brands including Glamour, GQ, Vogue, Wired, Vanity Fair, Teen Vogue and Style.com.

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    Pay-TV, mobile revs rising but América Móvil profits dip sharply

    América Móvil has seen a strong fall in net profit during last two quarters of 2014 which have led to poor figures for the year. However, its pay-TV and mobile operations are clearly growing across Latin America, and giving optimism to the telco giant.


    With over $15,000 million in revenues in Q4 and almost $60,000 million during the whole year, América Móvil's growth has been driven by mobile business (up 14.6%) and pay-TV operations (12.7%). In addition, the Mexican telco has purchased Telekom Austria, which consolidated its jump into the European market and increased its figure of access lines up to 368 million, 8.4% more than a year before.

    But when looking at the results published América Móvil they show a big drop in profits in Q4. In the last quarter it saw a profit of $240 million, 77.8% lower than the over $1,000 million profit of a year before. The figures also show a general drop in the year, as the telco finished 2014 with over $3,000 million in profit, 37.3% less than by the end of 2013, when it had over $5,000 million.

    Even though it's growing fast, its pay-TV business is still the smallest sector for Carlos Slim's company. While gathering 289.4 million wireless subscribers across the Americas and Europe, América Móvil owns 34.3 million landlines, 22.6 million broadband accesses and has 21.5 million pay-TV subs.

    Looking specifically at the pay-TV business, the sector's growth is led by operations in Brazil - the country in which the Claro brand has its largest market - with 10.4% growth, Colombia and Peru, both up by 14% by the end of the quarter, and Central America.

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    Telemundo takes Hispanic VOD lead

    DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 12 February 2015



    For the fourth year in a row, Telemundo has been ranked as the top Hispanic video-on-demand (VOD) network in the US, totalling 18.5 million hours of Hispanic VOD content, according to Rentrak.


    Ranking first regarding both views and hours, Telemundo is said to have been strengthening its commitment to serve its VOD audience, providing extensive content and opportunities for binge watching, which has cemented the network as an industry leader.

    Telemundo's VOD offer focuses on sneak peeks of the premiere episodes of new Spanish-language telenovelas and series days before they air, as well as special catch-up packages of its most popular series, including Top Chef Estrellas and El Señor de los Cielos.

    Additionally, Telemundo has been building on its VOD service a platform for advertisers to run and track campaigns with cutting-edge technology, having launched Dynamic Ad insertion, a tool which is currently only available on Telemundo and NBC UNIVERSO inside the US Hispanic market.

    In addition to soap operas and other series, Telemundo has also been increasing its sports programming, lately securing rights for the World Cup in Russia in 2018 and other international football matches.

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    Boomerang flies in as best CoPro Series at Berlinale

    DetailsJuan Fernandez Gonzalez | 12 February 2015


    Currently preparing to air on Spain's free-to-air (FTA) channel laSexta, Boomerang TV's Hierro has been selected as the best project presented at the CoPro Series event during the Berlinale film festival.


    Hierro, prepared by the group's Galician subsidiary Portocabo, has therefore been chosen to participate in the next edition of Series Mania, a major European series festival to be held in Paris in April. According to Boomerang, the Portocabo drama has aroused great interest from leading international companies looking to participate in the co-production.

    In addition to Hierro, another four international projects were presented at CoPro Series 2015, including Behind the Moon at that Time, from Anat Assoulin Productions (Israel); the German-US co-production The White Rhino Hotel, from Belladonna Productions; Valkyrien, from Tordenfilm (Norway); and Babylon Berlin, from X Filme Creative Pool (Germany).

    Hierro takes its name from the most remote island in the Canary Islands, in which the series is set. There, the corpse of a young islander is found floating at sea following an earthquake. Its appearance marks the starting point for a tense political drama that revolves around a false suspect and an inexperienced judge.

    With this production, Boomerang TV's fiction team continues to consolidate its international presence, which has seen series such as The Time In Between and Old Bridge Secret sold internationally

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    HBO delivers for Time Warner in fiscal 2014

    DetailsEditor | 12 February 2015


    A strong performance from HBO, thanks in the main to the mega-popular Game of Thrones and True Detective, was a key driver in a strong fiscal 2014, revenue-wise at least, for Time Warner.


    For the full year ended 31 December 2014, the company reported revenues increased 3% year-on-year to $27.4 billion, taking it to adjusted operating income of $5.8 billion. Yet this marked a decline of 6% from 2013 primarily due to charges at Turner related to its decision to no longer air certain programming and restructuring and severance charges across all segments. Operating Income fell 5% from its 2013 position to $6.0 billion.

    Yet despite the mixed messages, Time Warner chairman and chief executive officer Jeff Bewkes described the 2014 financial year as "very successful", noting that it was the company's sixth consecutive year of at least high teens adjusted EPS growth and that he was in charge of the world's leading video content company.

    He said: "We had another very successful year in 2014 ... For the year, three of Turner's networks – TBS, TNT and Adult Swim – ranked among ad-supported cable's top ten networks in prime time among adults 18-49. TNT was home to six of the top 15 original series on ad-supported cable in 2014, more than any other network, including the three most watched new series, The Last Ship, The Librarians, and Murder in the First. CNN strengthened its programming and in 2014 had an average total day monthly reach of almost 77 million total viewers, the highest of any cable news network.

    HBO also had another outstanding year, airing its most-watched original series ever – Game of Thrones – and its most-watched freshman series, True Detective ... Last year we also returned $6.6 billion to shareholders through share repurchases and dividends. We're committed to building on our strong record of providing direct returns to shareholders."

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    Solid first half year for Eutelsat

    DetailsEditor | 12 February 2015


    Leading satellite operator Eutelsat has made a pretty solid start to its fiscal 2015 with notable increases in revenues, profits and margin.


    eutelsatFor the six months ended 31 December 2014, Eutelsat reported revenues of €723 million, up 4.3% on a like-for-like basis driving net attributable income of €161 million, itself up 9.1% compared with the same time in 2013. EBITDA margin was 77.4% while net margin amounted to 22.2%.

    The company also logged a backlog of €6.1 billion, representing 4.4 years of revenues at current value.
    Video revenues were boosted in the six months from additional capacity launched in the previous financial year and from the positive dynamics of the Latin American market, in particular where the contribution of the Stamen business was beginning to be felt.

    "Eutelsat's half year results were in line with objectives, with like-for-like revenue growth of 4.3%, and an EBITDA margin of 77.4%," said Michel de Rosen, Chairman and CEO of Eutelsat Communications Eutelsat, leading satellite operator for broadcast, broadband, and data services, commenting on the first half results. "Revenue trends in data showed a slight improvement, while Value-Added Services reflected uptake on KA-SAT. In government services new contracts offset the lower renewals of the previous 12 months. A year on from its consolidation, Satmex continues to deliver in line with expectations and contributed positively to all applications."

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    UK Ultra HD market to grow fivefold to 1MN sets by end of 2015

    DetailsEditor | 12 February 2015


    The UK's Ultra HD market is about to enter a rapid and significant growth phase according to research from GfK.


    samsung SUHDSpeaking at the SES Ultra HD conference in London, Nigel Catlow, the company's consumer electronics business group director revealed that by the end of 2014 the UK's Ultra HD market comprised 200,000 pieces, roughly 3% of the TV set market's total volume cumulatively made up of around 68.9 million screens.

    Yet Ultra HD's contribution to the TV market is set to explode, with Catlow calculating that by the end of 2015 there will be 995,000 pieces growing to 1680 million by 2016. This would mean that Ultra HD's portion of the overall TV market account for 15% of the total by December 2015 and 26% a year later.

    Catlow also revealed a number of key commercial development parameters, among these was the sheer desire of the UK's consumer base to demand new, bigger and better technology. Also a key factor was the huge decline in average selling price of 4KTVs which GfK calculated £1,479 for the 200,000 sets from 75 models available in the market, around £1,200 less that the average for 2013. For December 2014 alone this average was £1,104; £200 less than in the previous month.

    In all, Ultra HD sets of all sizes accounted for 23% of the total value of the UK's TV market by December 2014. Around of quarter of all Ultra HD units were sized from 43-49", the segment making up just over a third (36%) of the value for all TVs of that size. The 50-59" segment had the same volume but 45% of the value with 60"+ sets accounting for 36% of shipments and 62% of the total value.

    Speaking of the larger-size market, Catlow noted the marked price premium, as sets got bigger though looking as to what will drive the market, he cautioned that heavy price erosion was inevitable. Speaking from the floor at the SES Ultra HD conference, BBC R&D lead research engineer Richard Salmon pointed out to Catlow that market development may actually be hampered by the fact that given the average viewing distance in UK homes was around 2.5 metres, only screens sized above 60 inches, and thus more expensive, would be capable of showing 4K Ultra HD content in its full glory, when indeed such material was actually on offer. A leading content firm also remarked that there was a danger of obsolescence in current Ultra HD sets due to possible new standards that may emerge.

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    SES extends Ultra HD demo channel to UK and Ireland

    DetailsEditor | 12 February 2015


    As it ups the pace in the 4KTV world, and recognising the country as a leader in the field in Europe, satellite operator SES has made its Ultra HD demonstration channel available in the UK and Ireland.


    SESUHDBroadcast via ASTRA 2E at 28.2° East, the new channel will simulcast the Ultra HD demonstration channel that is currently at SES's primary European orbital position of 19.2° East. The Ultra HD content is broadcast using the DVB UHD-1 Phase 1 signalling specifications and is encoded in the HEVC Main 10 standard.

    The UK is rapidly becoming a key market for Ultra HD. Research from GfK calculates that by the end of 2014 the UK's Ultra HD market comprised 200,000 pieces, and will grow to just under a million by December 2015.

    Aiming to demonstrate the clarity of Ultra HD, the SES demo TV channel features a mix of scenes - urban sports, exotic animals and nature, cityscapes - along with footage of SES's headquarters in Betzdorf. It can be received with a standard satellite dish connected to a state-of-the-art Ultra HD flat screen TV featuring an integrated satellite tuner and HEVC decoder.

    The channel is broadcast using transponder 2.038 on the ASTRA 2E satellite using DVB-S2 QPSK modulation.

    "We are delighted to have set up this demonstration channel at the prime orbital position for the UK market," said Mike Chandler, managing director of ASTRA (GB), SES's subsidiary in the UK, commenting on the channel launch. "We are making use of the capacity to enable UK and Irish retailers, installers and enthusiasts to understand the technology that makes UHD possible, and what it will mean for their viewing experience. We encourage our trade partners to show our Ultra HD demo channel at their points of sale for demonstration purposes."


 

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