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Satnews Daily
March 23rd, 2011

Of Interest To SatBroadcasting™ Professionals...

  • SES ASTRA, an SES company (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG), announced today that it has extended its technical reach across Europe and now serves 135 million TV homes in Europe and North Africa via its satellite fleet. This is more than half of all TV households in the regions. SES ASTRA`s Satellite Monitor, the annual market research study that measures TV coverage in 35 countries, shows continuous growth for ASTRA on all platforms and distribution modes, from direct satellite reception (Direct-to-Home, DTH) to High Definition (HD) and IPTV (TV over DSL). According to the study, ASTRA continues to be a driver of digitalisation and the most important HD platform in Europe. SES ASTRA now serves 16 out of 20 million HDTV homes receiving HD directly from satellite. Its satellites carry more than 200 HD channels from all leading broadcasters. In the growing segment of IPTV – television delivered in Internet Protocol (IP) format over telecommunication networks — SES ASTRA also reaches a leading position as a technical provider. The newest market research shows that ASTRA satellites are feeding — through network head-ends — almost 10 out of 12 million IPTV homes. In total, satellite is the largest digital mass infrastructure, with a digitalization rate of 95 percent, serving 75 million digital homes. This compares to 29 million digital cable homes equaling a cable digitalisation rate of 42 percent. Almost every second digital TV home is, therefore, served by satellite today. Comprising analogue and digital reception, satellite increased its lead over cable networks, reaching 79 million homes, compared to 71 million for cable. SES ASTRA`s platform for German HD programmes, HD+, also continued to show impressive growth. HD+, which now carries eight private encrypted free-TV channels in HD and also allows the reception of all other free-HDTV in Germany, has delivered more than 1.5 million smart cards to the receiver manufacturers who have brought more than 50 different HD+ receiver models on the market. 400,000 of these receivers have been sold as well as an additional 100,000 common interface modules which allow the HD+ reception on non-HD+ receivers.

  • The yet-to-be-launched SES-6 satellite
    Home to Latin America’s premier television content, SES WORLD SKIES, a division of SES S.A. (Euronext Paris and Luxembourg Stock Exchange: SESG), has a new capacity deal with Brazil’s John Paul II Foundation to deliver more Canção Nova TV channels into more regions of the world. Under the ten-year, multi-million-dollar agreement, Canção Nova TV is using 23 MHz of C-band capacity on SES WORLD SKIES’ NSS-806 satellite to distribute Catholic faith-based programming to millions of viewers across Latin America, North America and Europe. Much of Canção Nova TV’s entertainment, news and religious content is produced in the town of Cachoeira Paulista in the state of São Paulo, Brazil, where it’s uplinked in a variety of languages to cable and satellite system subscribers. Canção Nova TV content distribution will automatically and seamlessly transition from NSS-806 to SES-6 when the advanced SES-6 spacecraft is launched and commercially available in the 319.5 degrees East orbital slot. Scheduled to launch in 2013, SES-6 will offer enhanced coverage and capacity in North America and Latin America.

  • Streambox, Inc. will demo the Streambox Enterprise Server at NAB 2011; the new centralized server is an all-in-one software-based product that allows broadcasters and other video-centric organizations to manage the acquisition of video content, even when substantial amounts of video are being contributed. The Enterprise Server has multi-functioning capabilities; and is a part of the complete Streambox platform used to acquire, manage, and play out live and file-based video sent from the field. The Enterprise Server allows users to securely shorten and streamline workflows for both live and file-based acquisition by obtaining large amounts of video content from multiple reporters in the field simultaneously, and immediately archiving or routing the content to be played live on air. Key features of Enterprise Server include: the capability of acquiring both live and file-based video, automated streaming and routing, video sharing, and Interrupted Feedback Broadcast (IFB). The Enterprise Server has the ability to route individual video streams from multiple Encoders to multiple Decoders, monitors, stations/locations. Metadata and video clip thumbnails indicate to the control room operator which reporter, location, and story is affiliated with each video stream or archived video. Operators use this information to determine where to route and playout individual or grouped video streams, which is a feature that can be automated, based on provided metadata. The IFB and confidence monitoring features of the Enterprise Server both play an integral role in clear communication during live on-air video playout.

    The Enterprise Server’s compatibility with the cloud-based Streambox Live Service enables broadcasters to deploy free encoding software for remote reporters to download on their laptops or as an app on their mobile phones. By distributing many encoders for little to no cost with Streambox Live, broadcasters are able to leverage IP networks and use the Enterprise Server in conjunction with Streambox Live to acquire the substantial amount of video content needed with low cost. The Enterprise Server shortens and streamlines workflows for live and file-based acquisition, for maximum video contribution with minimum cost. Rule-based simultaneous video play-out on Decoders allows for optimized live video distribution. The Enterprise server provides scalable support and management by accepting field-generated video uploads in many various file formats and provides automatic or on-demand transcoding of the content depending on operator requirements. The Enterprise Server also facilitates improved management, monitoring and prioritization of field-edited files as they are uploaded to the server from contributors such as field reporters, stringers, citizen reporters, or remote bureaus.

  • SIS LIVE's Paris-based operation has a busy week ahead, providing facilities at sporting events across Europe. Last Monday kicked off with SIS LIVE providing uplink services at Marseille v Manchester Utd in the Champions League quarter finals. Coverage of the tournament continues in Munich, Madrid, and London for Canal+ before SIS LIVE returned to Paris on Thursday, when Paris Saint-Germain played Benfica in the Europa League. The weekend begins with U21’s 6 Nations Rugby before the big boys are at the Stade de France when France plays Wales on Saturday, March 19th, broadcast on France 2 and 4. The week closes with a more graceful sport and the most prestigious event in world gymnastics – Les Internationaux de France de Gymnastique.