31/12/01

Last day of the Year I would like to thank all that have supported the site over the year. Year 2002 Promises to be the biggest ever in the Asia Pacific region. Over the next few days I will take a look at some of the new Birds that are coming our way in 2002. We finish the year with the lighthearted annual Apsattv.com predictions, none of which could possibly happen.....could it??....

So Happy New Year, See ya next year! and P.S Keep your dish up :-)


Apsattv.com Official Predictions for Year 2002

Please Note The following contains, rumours, gossip, half-truths, misleads, daydreams, exaggeration, wild guess's and good old B.S it also contains some real info, it's up to you the reader to work out the fact from the fiction.


January 2002

Foxtel Helicopter sweeps Darwin and the NT but gives up after finding every 2nd house has a 3M solid dish in the yard.

Mediasat receives many complaints from the Thai and Turkish communities due to TV5 and TRT leaving.

JCsat 8 launches


February 2002

A big raid on suspected Pay TV pirates in Australia. Shock Horror several big name sports stars are implicated in the scandal that follows.

Tarb's signs up another dozen channels

JCsat 8 test with several never before seen Japanese channels seen FTA including a channel screening nothing but crazy game shows.

Pas 2 BBC World encrypts


March 2002

The Launch of Insat 3 at 83E sees more Indian services available including a couple in English!

Meanwhile new services pop up on Asiasat 3, Including HBO which is soon hacked and spread around the Indian Cable tv networks.

Al Jazeera news channel starts up its English channel. Aaj Tak TV from India follows

A drop in the Value of the Aussie Dollar hits pay providers hard.


April 2002

1st of April sees Canal+ launch 2 new Adult services, XXXX for the Aussie market and XXL News a 24 hour news channel from the people that brought you Nakednews.com.

Foxtel tests "Cryptoworks" encryption format

In a unusual move several Russian satellites are relocated

Nokia DVB2000 project finishes only bug fixes added from now.


May 2002

The NZ government purchases and launches is own small KU satellite, this kickstarts the NZ FTA market and also supplies 2 way internet to %100 of the country.  All the NZ channels move off B1 and onto "Silverfern Sat"

Sky Attempts to offer a Pay Tv service to the Pacific Islands via SilverFern Sats Pacific Island Spot beam

Various services on B3 move to B1 to take advantage of the extra space.

Major problems cause Palapa C2 to shutdown for several days


June 2002

"Silverfern Sat" is a great success in the NZ market, leading to the launch of long awaited PAY TV competition to Sky. Sky responds by broadcasting its Sky 1 service FTA. Sky then attempts to flood the market with FREE decoders to anyone who will sign up with them. Of course we know that these are the ancient slow old units that can't handle the Open tv software but Sky has to get rid of them somehow.

There is much interest in the new satellite TDRS I satellite that gets placed at 172E

Asiasat 4 Launches to 122E bringing more Indian and Chinese channels.

The Launch of the new satellite receiver from the makers of DVB2000 and its a HOT one. Who's for some Mpg 4:2:2 video?


July 2002

A mystery new FTA english channel starts up via Thaicom 3 global beam, the FTA Adults only late night entertainment awakens the now dead cband big dish market. Shocked at the loss of viewers, competing channel ABC Asia Pacific in a shock move brings back "Here's Humphrey" and reruns of "A Country Practice"

The NZ market is flooded with cheap low end Asian satellite equipment.

Sky Launches a new receiver on the NZ market that does NDS/Irdeto and Viaccess with dual card slots, Has built in 60 Gig HD. This one they actually sell to customers! Foxtel buys 50000 of them...

Silverfern Sat adds 4 new channels, Kids , Music, 24hour News, and SportsNZ


August 2002

The Chinese government bans ABC Asia Pacific, there is only so much "Here's Humphrey" one can stand.

Optus C1 Launches (Finally) but surprise! it has problems with one of its antennas and signals going into parts of Asia that it shouldn't cover. The Singapore Government says "No comment" over the new unofficial footprint.

Foxtel Helicopter mysteriously crashes somewhere off the coast of NZ.

Foxtel then releases statement regarding footprint testing of Optus C1


September 2002

CCTV premieres its new show "Humflee Blear" which look suspiciously like VHS taped copies of Here's Humphrey but with Mandarin and Cantonese subtitles.

A satellite launch goes horribly wrong with a bird crash landing someplace in central Australia

Several Asiasat 2 Chinese channels encrypt


October 2002

Craig finally gets council permission to put up his dish at his new place...but its to late he is already looking at new places out in the country.

Zee TV goes FTA for the month to try and attract viewers

Several Chinese channels start offering "all English" programming in primetime and yes it has annoying subtitles at the bottom.

Tarb's raises its prices


November 2002

Craigs dish goes up (Hey stop laughing what do you mean it takes longer than a month for me to put up a dish) ;-)

Tarbs launches its Asia Pacific regional service.

Mystery Sat 1 goes up


December 2002

Chinese Family across the road from my house complains about the ugly dish in the yard. Problem is resolved after promising them tapes of "Humflee Blear" for their kids.

Asian Hackers announce they have the Tarb's encryption system hacked.

Tarbs cancels its recently launched Asia Pacific service due to "lack of interest"

Mystery Asian Company starts an Ethnic satellite service



30/12/01

No Update today




29/12/01

Sorry there isn't much news around at the moment not a lot we can do about it at this time of the year. There will be no site update on Sunday. But Monday 31st will be a special edition the first ever Apsattv.com predictions for year 2002. I will stare blankly at my dish and see what is coming up next year in the satellite world. Expect rumours, gossip, half-truths, misleads, daydreams, exaggeration, wild guess's and good old B.S thrown in as well. There will be some real info hidden in it also a rundown on new satellites coming in 2002 I think there is 14 launches to look forward to this year for our region!


From my Emails & ICQ


From Charles E Wright

Abc radio Australia running this morning......two diffrent audio channels


From the Dish


Intelsat 701 180E 11060 V TPS Star has replaced Cinestar 1 on , PIDs 955/975

Intelsat 701 180E The mux with Canal + Polynesie, RFO Tempo Tahiti, occasional RFO feeds, RFI and France Culture is still on 4086 L, Sr 12250, Fec 5/6. ( I was sure this hadn't left, just a SR change)

Insat 2E 83E 4005 V ETV Kannada has started testing on, MPEG-2/clear, SID 6, PIDs 1660/1620.


NEWS


Sky TV gets on top of its digital bugs


From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/

Sky Television hopes to have the bugs in its new digital format ironed out within the next few days, ending the teething problems that have had the service's subscribers complaining.

Their problems have included slow channel changing, sudden volume surges and missing programme information.

The problems have been caused by bugs in the new system's electronic programming guide.

Sky spokesman Tony O'Brien said yesterday the company hoped that the problems would be sorted out within the next few days.

"We're not hiding the fact we have had problems with it, but it's nothing like the problems we had when we launched the digital service in 1998."

He said customers were not able to go back to the old system, as it was gradually being phased out.

About 300,000 people subscribe to Sky's digital service and the switch from the company's old service was now "99 per cent complete".

The new digital format includes the addition of video games, TVNZ free-to-air channels, 11 radio channels, and an interactive weather service that includes marine reports and live satellite maps.

Mr O'Brien said the main problem was the slowness of electronic programming guide software.

While the new system would be slower than the previous one, it was hard to say by how much.

"It's like if you have everything open on your computer, it slows things down, but you will have many more features and applications - the old service had only one."

He said said Sky's investment in the new service was considerable but it had budgeted for teething problems.

He said there were always likely to be unexpected problems in setting up any new system.

- NZPA


(Craigs comment, Believe it when it happens...I bet they announce an "upgrade to a brand new decoder " promotion within a few months.)


Sri Adhikari Brothers back in spotlight on private placement talks


From http://www.capitalmarket.com

Satellite broadcaster Si Adhikari Brothers gained ground on renewed buying interest.

The scrip was up 6.9% to Rs 124 at 13:49 IST. 2.82 lakh shares had changed hands on the counter on BSE.

The buying in the stocks is on continued speculation about a private placement by the company at a premium to the market price. Amid this speculation, the scrip had surged sharply in the last few weeks. From a low of Rs 44.80 on 2 November 2001, the scrip jumped by 225% to a recent high of Rs 145.85 on 12 December 2001, when profit taking took centrestage on the counter. From that high, the scrip lost 32% to a recent low of Rs 98.90 on 21 December 2001. The scrip is once again attracting buying at the lower levels. Volumes, too, have soared from about 50,000 shares in early November 2001 to over 2 lakh shares a day now.

According to media analysts, there are rumours in the market for some time now of the company is considering a private placement of shares at about Rs 150-170 per share to a foreign strategic partner. The rumours have gained currency after satellite channel Sabe TV, the 100 per cent subsidiary of Shri Adhikari Brothers Television Network (SABTNL), recently appointed Credit Lyonnais to scout for a strategic partner for its on-going expansion.

Sabe TV which is a 24-hour Hindi general entertainment channel offers a mix of programming comprising sitcoms, soaps, chat shows, mythological and variety entertainment programmes. The channel claims it reaches around 22 million homes across the country. The channel, is transmitted digitally through the Asiasat 3S Satellite, is currently available as a free-to-air service across India.

SABTNL is an integrated television content production house and a broadcaster. The company commenced operations over 13 years ago as a television software production house producing programming for India's national broadcaster, Doordarshan. SABTNL continues to produce content for Doordarshan and markets airtime for these programmes on its own. The company launched its own television channel - SABe TV - on 23 April 2000.


Sri Adhikari Brothers clarifies on news article


From http://www.rediff.com/money/2001/dec/28risc.htm#adhikari

With reference to news article appeared in a leading financial daily titled "Sri Adhikari scrip soars on placement talk", Sri Adhikari Brothers Television Network Ltd has informed BSE that the article published in the newspaper was based on rumours, it was not a company release or it was not based on the information provided by the company.

The company has clarified that the company is receiving proposals for strategic alliances and is exploring opportunities on this front. However, till date, nothing has been finalised.




28/12/01

Welcome back hope you are enjoying the Holiday break, there has been very little activity over the last few days. B1 has been active with coverage of the Bush fires. While things are quiet I have been working on cleaning up the site a bit and making a few minor changes. Not much News around either.

Some time in the last week Sky NZ improved the Resolution on Tv1 and Tv2 to 720x576 (Same as the TVNZ mux uses) several people have commented that it looks "sharper" Someone at Sky HQ must of read the December issue of Satfacts where Bob compared Skys' FTA vs TVNZ's. It now comes down to what you prefer the service with Teletext or Sky's with EPG. I think Teletext is past its use by date in the age of internet. Meanwhile the newsgroups continue to fill with complaints over Skys Interactive problems and the recent decoder upgrades. The Aardvark page of Dec 27th has more on this.

Maybe some good news about BBC World, the Pas 8 signal may remain FTA due to viewer response. See Satfacts page for more info.

Aaardvark site http://www.aardvark.co.nz/

Satfacts page updated

The broken end off my actuator



From my Emails & ICQ


From Me 28/12/01

11.12a.m Syd time

On Optus B1
Feeds I guess for midday news

Optus B1 is running aussie bush fires feed
12339 V Sr 6108 Pids 308 256 Fec 3/4 "Sky news feed"
12357 V Sr 6108 Pids 4160 4120 Fec 3/4 "Globecast LF8, looks like channel 10 16x9 feed



From Bill Richards

From Chris Pickstock 26/12/01

The following is observed here in SA at 12.30 pm.


B1, 12317 H, Sr 6980, CNN
B1, 12326 H, Sr 6980, BBC World
B1, 12335 H, Sr 6980, Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race feed
B1, 12356 V, Sr 6110, SKY News Australia feeds of Sydney fires

B3, 12336 V, Mediasat, Network Ten coverage of Sydney Hobart Race

Also later in the day spotted

B1, 12367 V, Sr 6110, feed from the channel V music bus

Chris


From the Dish


Pas 8 166E Programming link added for ABC Asia Pacific http://abcasiapacific.com/guide/schedule.htm

Jcsat 8 154E No reports yet of a sucessfull launch of this new satellite

Measat 2 148E 4181 V "channel 1?" Sr 4342 Fec 3/4 Unconfirmed reports of new service here on Cband

Insat 2C 93.5E 4161 H "DD 4 - Kerala has left"


NEWS


TV repairman threatened with knife


From http://www.nzherald.co.nz

Threatening a television repairman with a knife because he could not fix the picture cost a Wellington restaurant owner $280 in the Wellington District Court yesterday.

Mustafa Can, aged 34, pleaded guilty to assault with a weapon and to being in possession of an offensive weapon.
The charges followed an incident in September when, police say, the repairman was at Can's home trying to fix his satellite dish.
An argument developed, and Can refused to pay the bill because the repairman had been to fix the dish two days before.
The police summary of facts said Can then motioned with his finger to his throat and said: "If you can't get it going, I'm going to slit your throat".
He then waved a kitchen knife at the repairman.
Can was discharged without conviction and ordered to pay $100 to the Cancer Society and $180 to the repairman.


(Craigs comment, I bet it was the Asiasat 2 mux he was trying to get. Perhaps he caught it when it was running FTA, then it encrypted. He has a great name I wonder if he is related to famous Samoan satellite viewer Tofullalaga Falloffasofa)


MAK TV to come up with 5 channels


From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow.asp?art_id=1569710973

ET another television network is set to make a splash on the air-waves. And this one has five channels in its bouquet. The new network will be lead by the flagship Hindi channel called MAK TV.

Others, a dedicated fashion channel called Style, a music channel, and two regional channels: one Gujarati and one Sindhi. MAK is the acronymn for Manoranjan Aur Kya!

Speaking to ET, the about-to-be-launched channel’s North India representative Nitasha Narad merely said, "We are not really talking about details of the channel, since we are formally launching the net-work in a week’s time." Sources say that the channels of the MAK bouquet may go on air as early as January.

While the MAK channel will be headed by Karan Saluja, it is ru-moured that a top-level Sony executive who left the channel recently may also join the new channel as a senior functionary.

While MAK officials were tight-lipped about who the channel’s backers are, Mumbai media circles are abuzz with rumours that Subhash Ghai may be one of the persons behind it.

However, when ET contacted Mukta Arts’ executive director Parvez Farooqui, he denied saying that neither Ghai nor Mukta Arts was involved with the channel.

If MAK TV gets launched with all the 5 channels in its bouquet at one go, it will be one of the biggest network launches after a long time.

Currently, among national channels, only Star and Zee have more than five channels in their bouquet. Both Sony and Turner have three channels each of their own, though CNBC India has recently joined the Sony platform taking its bouquet tally to four.

Among the new channel launches in recent times, has been the Sri Adhikari Brothers’ SAB TV, Sahara group’s Sahara TV, the two chan-nels of B4U network, the mega-successful Hindi news channel Aaj Tak and the ETC channel.

However, none of the new entertainment channels have managed to break the stranglehold of Star, Sony and Zee on the Indian entertainment landscape and these channels continue to hold the sway on people’s minds.

Even the trend of regional channels is becoming strong with chan-nels from the TARA stable, ETV, Star, Zee TV, Doordarshan and of course the mega South Indian channel network Sun TV are going all out to serve programmes with a regional flavour.

However, MAK’s gameplan will only come to light, once the channel hits the airwaves next year.


(Craigs comment, wonder if they will show up via Asiasat 3 about time we got some new services there)


Zee may switch ownership of channels for India uplink


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011227/efetop1.html

ZEE Telefilms is considering the transfer of direct ownership of Zee TV and Zee Cinema from Asia Today Limited (ATL), its wholly-owned subsidiary, to an Indian registered entity as one of the options so that it can uplink these prime channels from India.

The company is seeking regulatory approvals from various authorities but is yet to finalise on any one option. The options could be the merger of ATL with Zee Telefilms or setting up a branch office of ATL in India or transferring Zee TV and Zee Cinema from ATL to Zee Telefilms.

?We will have to bring Zee TV and Zee Cinema under Zee Telefilms or ATL by opening a branch office in India if we are to get permission to uplink these two channels from the country. But we will need approvals from various authorities,” said Hitesh Vakil, director, finance, Zee Telefilms.

Zee will need to clear all syndicated loans of ATL. It will also need clearance from Reserve Bank of India and the ministry. Though the company has obtained permission to uplink seven of its channels from India, the main channels Zee TV and Zee Cinema are not eligible as they belong to the Hong Kong-based ATL which is not a registered company in India.

Zee News, which also belonged to ATL, will be transferred to Zee Telefilms. “We were already uplinking Zee News from India. So it did not require a special permission or regulatory approval,” said Mr Vakil.

Zee Telefilms, which had sought uplinking of its seven digitally encrypted channels from India, has also applied for permission for the southern language channels, Bharathi and Kaveri. They are currently uplinked from Singapore. “We couldn’t apply earlier as we were talking with Asianet Media for a joint venture in the southern region. But as the deal broke, we have applied now for the southern language channels. We would like to uplink them in the first phase itself,” said Mr Vakil.

Zee Telefilms will either merge Dakshin Media with itself or transfer the assets and make it go defunct. The southern language channels will be operated by ZTL.

The channels uplinked from Singapore by ZTL subsidiary Expand Fast Holdings will be operated by ZTL. These are Zee Music, Zed TV and the four language channels. These were ZTL-owned brands which were licensed to Expand Fast. “Once the uplinking starts, the licensing arrangement will stop,” said Mr Vakil.

Zee’s plan is to bring third party channels under Expand Fast for uplinking in Singapore. Expand Fast has three transponders and a capacity to uplink more than 20 channels. Zee English and Zee MGM will continue to be uplinked from Singapore.

Zee Telefilms had earlier sought for permission to uplink all its channels from India but subsequently brought it down to seven channels because of the policy restrictions. It also dropped its plans to directly operate a teleport in India because of the foreign equity restrictive clause. ZTL chairman Subhash Chandra has NRI status and owns around 59 per cent, which is not permissible for a teleport operator in India.


AXN airs in Malaysia


From http://www.adageglobal.com/cgi-bin/daily.pl?daily_id=6490

SINGAPORE - Sony-owned action and adventure satellite TV channel AXN-Asia has soft-launched on ASTRO in Malaysia.

According to AXN Managing Director Todd Miller, this new carriage means complete 24-hour coverage in all key markets and all key systems across 17 countries in Asia, bringing the total number of subscriber households to more than 54 million.

The channel officially launches Jan. 1 on the pay-TV channel's basic tier: 'ASTRO Favorites'. Describing Malaysia as a crucial market for regional TV networks, Mr. Miller expects AXN in Malaysia "to perform to high levels".

Commenting on the addition of AXN on ASTRO, ASTRO's International Programming Manager Agnes Kim Rozario says: "By adding AXN to our programming line-up, we now offer 38 vernacular and international television channels as well as access to 16 radio channels."




25/12/01- 27/12/01 AWAY (BACK on the 28th)

24/12/01

Well I can't say I am in a Christmas kind of mood. I moved the dish to have a look at ABC Asia Pacifics test on Pas 8, then was shifting dish over to 701. I managed to move the dish to far and the dish rolled over and here is the %^!#&^%#!!!!!! bit the end of the actuator snapped off!!! sending my dish crashing down !! (still on the pole though) if it wasn't for the guywires i had up the whole thing would be a write off! as it is there is a small bit of panel damage where the actuator hit (No holes or rips just a dent) just by luck it hit the pole in line with one of the ribs. I don't know how it snapped so easily! One clip to the hub of the dish popped off. Well that's the damage count. I must be jinxed, first I had to send for replacement hub clips, then a replacement polar rotar moter. Now it seems a new actuator will be needed. I might just take the whole lot down and start again at the new house but with my luck I won't be allowed to put it up there. Anyway Merry Christmas everyone we will be back on the 28th in the meantime if your satelliteing over the next few days stay in touch via the mailing list.

Abc Northern on B1 seems to be back to its highest power. Even my 65cm is receiving it again.


From my Emails & ICQ


From David Pemberton

Craig,

ABC ASIA PACIFIC TV has now started testing on PAS 8.Frequency is 4180H.SR = 27500.FEC = 3/4.

There are two ABC ASIA PACIFIC TV channels.Pids are as follows.

ABC ASIA PACIFIC 1 = 2306/2307/2305.
ABC ASIA PACIFIC 2 = 2313/2314/2312.

There are two RADIO AUSTRALIA Channels.Pids are:-

1 = 2309/2305
2 = 2310/2305.

Please note:- They do not load in as ABC PACIFIC 1 and 2.They only load as ABC ASIA PACIFIC.I only put 1 and 2 to explain the difference.


Best regards,
DAVID PEMBERTON


From Tony Drexal FTA Satellite Services.

Australia Television has commenced on

PAS 8 166E 4180 H SR 27500 Fec 3/4

MPEG 2 Television:

Ch1 Australia Television
V2307
A2308
PCR 2305

Ch2 Australia Television
V2313
A2314
PCR 2306


Radio:

Ch1 Radio Australia
A2310
PCR 2305

Ch2 Radio Australia
A2311
PCR 2305



Kind regards
Tony Drexel.
Free To Air Satellite Services. S.A.


From the Dish


Intelsat 701 180E A new CanalSatellite Caledonie mux has started on 10975 H, MPEG-2/Mediaguard,
SR 30000, FEC 3/4, SIDs 1-2 and 2001-2003, line-up: two test cards (clear),Action, National Geographic Channel France and TF 6.

PAS 8 166E 4180 H "ABC Asia Pacific MUX" Started, Sr 27500, Fec 3/4

PAS 8 166E 4180 H ABC "Asia Pacific" Vpid 2306 Apid 2307
PAS 8 166E 4180 H ABC "Asia Pacific" Vpid 2313 Apid 2314 (This one - 2hours)
PAS 8 166E 4180 H ABC "Radio Australia started" Apid 2309
PAS 8 166E 4180 H ABC "Radio Australia started" Apid 2310

(Craigs comment, I found TXT pids here also, unfortunatly I didn't get to save them in memory)

Optus B3 156E Minor updates in Austar/Foxtel.

Yamal 102 90E 3645 L "ORT International" has left.

ST 1 88E 3632 V "Tzu Chi TV"is now encrypted. (You can watch it on Mediasat thought )

Thaicom 2 78.5E 3764 H "BBTV Channel 7" is back on , Sr 4320, Vpid 33 Apid 34.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3585 V "Sky Bangla has replaced Star Vijay" on, Vpid 515 Apid 643.


NEWS


Digital Television Discussion Document

Press Release by New Zealand Government at 2:00pm, 21st December 2001


From http://www.newsroom.co.nz/story/79440-32-0.html

The government is inviting public input into the development of policy on digital television.

Broadcasting Minister, Marian Hobbs, has released a public discussion document that considers what role the government might have in facilitating digital television in New Zealand.

"Transmitting television to the home with digital technology is occurring in several countries including New Zealand," Marian Hobbs said. "We should now address when and how digital transmissions are introduced more widely including for free to air services."

Digital television can be transmitted by satellite, cable, or terrestrial means. It has the potential to offer better reception quality, increased programme capacity and new features such as programme guides, multi-view camera angles, and interactivity. There is also the possibility of increased convergence with the Internet. In the short to medium term there will be added cost for broadcasters and for viewers who choose to receive digital transmissions, but these are expected to decrease over time.

The widespread use of digital technology for free to air services raises questions about technology choice, spectrum allocation, reception in the home and set top boxes, geographical coverage of television broadcasts, and "switch off" of analogue services. There are also implications for public broadcasters from audience fragmentation and, for viewers, the availability of publicly funded programming.

"My concern is that all New Zealanders have access to the choice and opportunities that digital can offer," Marian Hobbs said. "New Zealand needs a wide public debate on the issues and the discussion document is designed to stimulate this.

"Submissions from the public and industry will enable the government to make better informed decisions. It is important that policy decisions are consistent with the government's objectives for broadcasting, knowledge economy initiatives and the wider regulatory environment."

The closing date for submissions is April 15, 2002.

The discussion document is available on the Minister of Broadcasting's website:

http://www.executive.govt.nz/minister/hobbs/index.html

And also at: http://www.med govt.nz/pbt/broadcas/digitaltv/index.html

or in printed form from:

Ministry of Economic Development
PO BOX 1473
WELLINGTON
(Attn. Radio Spectrum and Broadcasting Policy Group)

ENDS


Russia, Australia Sign Commercial Cosmodrome Deal


From satnewsasia.com

Russia announced it had signed an agreement with Australia on space launches from Australia's Christmas Island beginning 2004.

The contract between Rosaviakosmos, the Russian space agency, and Asia Pacific Space Center (APSC), was signed last weekend and follows an agreement last June that provides a framework for cooperation between the two countries. The initial agreement also facilitates the transfer of information and technology between the two countries.

Australia has chosen tiny Christmas Island off its northwest coast as the site for its first space launch center. When inaugurated in 2003, the US$408 million facility will become the first fully commercial, land-based facility of its kind in the world. It will be operated with technical assistance from Russia.

The project by APSC, an Australian consortium, focuses on the growing Asian satellite market. The spaceport would target the geostationary launch market and offer capabilities for low earth orbits. It will also be used in test flights of satellites and space communications. The island's proximity to the equator (it lies between 10 degrees 30 minutes South and 105 degrees 35 minutes East) makes it an ideal satellite launch site as heavier payloads can be sent into orbit using less fuel.

Work on the Christmas Island project will begin in February 2002 with a first launch expected around the end of 2004, about one year later than originally planned. Some issues such as protection of sensitive Russian technology, however, remain unresolved. In addition, Australia is also demanding launch guarantees that the Russians consider excessive, according to Yuri Koptev, director general of Rosaviakosmos. He expected both parties to come to a final agreement by February 2002.

Satellites from the Christmas Island spaceport will be launched atop Russia's new Aurora rocket, an upgraded version of the Soyuz launch vehicle. The Aurora can carry a payload of up to 12 metric tons into a low earth orbit, significantly enhancing the Soyuz's capacity of seven metric tons. Much of that advantage owes to Christmas Island's proximity to the equator, which allows rockets to carry heavier cargoes to higher orbits compared with launches from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The first Aurora flight tests will be launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome.

APSC is to stage between four and five launches a year down from earlier predictions that saw as many as 15 launches per year from 2006.

Koptev gave a bleak outlook on the commercial satellite launch market, which he said was shrinking instead of expanding. Over the next five years, Koptev expects no more than 32 to 34 launches to GTO per year worldwide, and only seven to 10 launches into low and medium orbits.


Star Granted Landing Rights for a New Channel in China


From satnewsasia.com

China has given Star TV, the Asian satellite TV unit of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation, approval for a Mandarin-language entertainment channel in Guangdong province.

The channel will launch early next year and will air programs from CCTV-9, a unit of China's state-run broadcaster, in the United States through News Corp's Fox network. Beginning April 1, 2002, CCTV-9 will downlink to select networks in the San Francisco and Los Angeles area while a Chinese entertainment channel will be downlinked to some networks in Zhaoqing and Guangzhou, capital of Guangdong, China's richest province.

The deal gives Star TV, the number one satellite broadcaster in India, a toehold in a region of China that has some 100 million-cable households. The deal is the third time Beijing has given a foreign broadcaster access to cable viewers in Guangdong. Last October, Beijing gave similar rights to AOL Time Warner's Chinese-language channel CETV and to Phoenix Satellite Television, which is 38 percent-owned by News Corp. Foreign channels are banned outside of luxury hotels and foreign residence compounds in the rest of China.

The Chinese Communist Party sees control of the media as key to its survival as economic progress brings a host of new challenges, including the threat of social unrest from workers thrown out of work by foreign competition.

James Murdoch, Star TV chairman and CEO, said he was excited about this landmark agreement that represents a milestone for Star's development in China. With its new channel, Star would be able to provide content in Guangdong unlikely to agitate Beijing censors while continuing to air news programs and more provocative entertainment over channels in other Asian countries.

Star, a wholly-owned subsidiary of News Corporation, is Asia's leading multi-platform content and service provider. Star's 37 distributed services in eight languages reach more than 300 million viewers across 53 Asian countries. Star television channels include Star Chinese Channel, Phoenix Chinese Channel, Star Plus, Star World, Channel [V], ESPN, Star Sports, Star Movies, Star Gold, Phoenix Movies Channel, VIVA Cinema, Star News, Phoenix InfoNews Channel, in addition to distributed channels National Geographic Channel, Vijay, Fox News and Sky News. Star has interests in cable systems in India and Taiwan, Internet portals and services companies across the region, and is the leading commercial FM radio operator in India.

China Central Television (CCTV), established in 1958, is China’s national television station. CCTV is China's earliest and largest broadcaster, and runs 11 channels reaching one billion viewers.


SpeedCast NetTV and BizTV Deliver Bloomberg Television's Financial Information and Business News


From satnewsasia.com

SpeedCast Ltd., a broadband enabler of satellite based services, today announced the renewal of the partnership agreement with Bloomberg Television, the global provider of financial information and business news.

With the agreement, Bloomberg Television's live, around-the-clock financial information and business news will be available on SpeedCast Multimedia's satellite-enabled services, NetTV and BizTV throughout Asia and the Middle East. The business video content will be delivered directly to end-users' PCs 24 hours a day on a subscription basis.

SpeedCast NetTV and BizTV's subscribers will have access to Bloomberg Television content live from the US, Asia and Japan, as well as Bloomberg Headlines and the top Asian and world news. Bloomberg's content is delivered via satellite directly to last mile Internet connection or via corporate LANs, enhancing viewing quality for end users.

Bloomberg Television is one of the top five NetTV channels and demonstrates a track record of high traffic, according to SpeedCast. The company believes Bloomberg’s high quality authoritative streaming media content is the key to attract and retain viewership and to drive further revenue to Bloomberg and its other content partners.

The SpeedCast network is designed to deliver streaming multimedia video and audio content to the edge of the Internet, bypassing the Internet's slow delivery paths. By bringing content as close to the end-user as possible, subscribers can enjoy a high quality listening and viewing experience. The service is delivered via the AsiaSat 3S satellite, with a geographical footprint covering more than two thirds of the world's population.

Bloomberg Television provides comprehensive coverage of fast-breaking money and business news, stock reports, world news, market updates, sport and weather in the world. Bloomberg has 1,500 reporters and editors based in 85 news bureaus worldwide, delivering news and analysis 24 hours a day, everyday.

Founded in September 1999, the shareholders of SpeedCast include Tech System Limited, Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat), Telecom Venture Group and Yahoo! Inc. Based in Hong Kong, SpeedCast, is focused on becoming the leading broadband Internet and multimedia service provider via three satellite-enabled broadband services.


FTV’s Adam keen to meet Indian cable operators


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011220/efetop3.html

Paris-based Fashion Television (FTV) is now keen to meet Indian cable television operators, a little over a month since it went off the air when its decision to become a pay channel was rejected by the operators.

According to an official of Modi Entertainment Network, FTV owner Michael Adam has sought the support of all recognised multi-system operators (MSOs) to re-enter the market as a pay channel.

?I look forward to your patronage and strong support to the channel in making it a great success in India,” Mr Adam has written in a letter to MEN, which is the largest distributor of FTV in south Asia. “When I am India in next time, I look forward to meeting you”.

?Keep watching FTV. More fun, more fashion, more entertainment, non-stop,” Mr Adams has written.

The MEN official said Mr Adams is planning to visit India soon to market the channel. FTV, the first 24-hour channel dedicated to fashion, is not available everywhere in India ever since it decided to go pay. RPG Netcom, which covers 75 per cent of the market in Kolkata, does not show FTV but its smaller rival, Siti Cable, includes it.

The Asiasat-2-based FTV had decided to become a pay channel from November 1 this year, but operators under RPG Netcom refused to accept it. The operators had wanted a 120-day notice period, but FTV refused to accept this demand.

The MEN official said decoders are in short supply, so the channel continues to be free-to-air for those independent operators and MSOs who want to show it. He said the FTV decoder is now available for Rs 18,000 against Rs 36,000 earlier for a minimum of 300 points. The monthly rental is Rs 7 per point for operators who do not want to buy the decoder outright.

However, the Forum of Cable Operators (FCO) has once again said that there is no demand for FTV to justify its going pay.


Zee TV to offer separate encrypted beam for Bangladesh, Middle East, Pak


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011220/con5.html

Zee TV will offer a separate encrypted broadcast beam for the Middle East, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal, starting December-end.

A separate beam will help Zee to reschedule programmes for those markets and enable the company to tap advertisers from those regions separately. Zee estimates airtime annual sales of $4-5 million from markets covered under this new beam.

Currently, Zee TV accepts ads from these markets only in its late prime (post 11 pm) time slots. The current beam covers geographies from Singapore to Saudi Arabia.

?The separate beam will help Zee TV monetise all 24 hours of its programming for airtime slots from these markets. Currently, advertising for all Indian channels gets affected in these markets as the rates in India are much higher and prime time varies,” said the company in a release.

?With a rate-card tailored to that market, we believe we can generate substantial revenues from the Middle East. The Pakistan market is almost virgin for us. We could get our rightful share of ad revenues from there by offering prime-time inventory at locally competitive prices,” said Zee Telefilms group CEO Sandeep Goyal.

Zee TV may also consider some content customisation with market-relevant programming in Bengali, Punjabi and Urdu for viewers in Bangladesh and Pakistan. It may also enhance some of the movie content on this beam as Indian movies have a high fan following in all these markets.

Zee had earlier announced that it had obtained government permission to uplink seven of its channels from India.

?Local uplinking will free up a lot of facilities at Singapore, allowing customisation of beams for different markets. The Middle East and Pakistan beam is a first step in this direction,” the company said.


T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 51/2001 23 December 2001 -

A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by TELE-satellite

International

Editor: Branislav Pekic

Edited apsattv.com edition

A S I A


CHINA


STAR TV SECURES RIGHTS FOR CABLE CHANNEL

Rupert Murdoch’s Star TV announced it has secured rights to a mainland
cable TV channel. Star TV will be granted official approval for an
entertainment channel delivered by local cable TV systems in Guangdong,
China’s richest province. The Asian broadcasting unit of Rupert
Murdoch’s Australia-based News Corp already has a mainland foothold with
5 free-to-air channels beaming signals to selected viewers in hotels and
in foreign residential compounds. The channels are Channel V, Star
Sports, National Geographic, ESPN and Star Movies. Each week about 50
hours of programming are distributed to mainland TV stations and cable
TV operators in the form of syndicated programme blocks. Star TV has
become the third foreign firm to be granted cable carriage rights - the
right to provide its TV services to individual homes by cable.


COOK ISLANDS


NO TV FOR ISLAND INHABITANTS

The inhabitants of the Cook Islands in the South Pacific are without
television after the government pulled the plug on Aitutki’s only TV
station. A letter from the Prime Minister to the Aitutki Broadcasting
Service said the government’s TV service on the islands would be changed
immediately. The letter follows directives issued by the Prime Minister
as Minister for Finance and Economic Development, Telecommunications and
Broadcasting. It says the Government will no longer be responsible for
any costs incurred by the company in the provision of a television
service.


THE PHILIPPINES


NBC GIVES UP ON SATELLITE TV PLANS

Nation Broadcasting Corp., affiliate of dominant carrier Philippine Long
Distance Telephone Co., has suspended a plan to operate a direct-to-home
satellite television service pending the completion of cable televisions
Home Cable-SkyCable merger. NBC filed with the National
Telecommunications Commission on May 30 an application to operate a DTH
satellite television service in the country. An NTC source said that NBC
might not have a hard time acquiring a license since it would already be
the fifth player in the DTH market. The NTC, however, has yet to give
the broadcasting company its license. Pangilinan, however, said he would
rather wait it out and see how the merger of Home Cable with the
Lopezes’ SkyCable would work before making his next move.
Internet - http://www.pldt.com.ph/


SINGAPORE


RADYNE COMSTREAM WINS ESPN STAR SPORTS ORDER

Radyne ComStream through its wholly-owned subsidiary Armer
Communications Engineering Services (ACES), on December 21 announced a
$1.1 million award with ESPN STAR Sports in support of a digital TV
uplink facility in Singapore. ESPN STAR Sports, a 50:50 joint venture
between two of the world's leading cable and satellite broadcasters,
ESPN Inc. and STAR, is Asia's sports provider that reaches over 82
million households for ESPN and over 56 million households for STAR
Sports, bringing the world's premier live sports and leading regional
events to viewers 24 hours a day.

Internet - http://www.espnstar.com




23/12/01

No site update for today, there will be one Monday then a 3 or 4 day break. I will be quite busy over over the next few weeks packing, so the site will be on the back burner for a while.




22/12/01

Interesting news Channel 9 and NZ Prime TV announced a partnership deal. Hopefully the first thing they will do is go FTA on B1 in the Sky service or preferably the TVNZ mux. The other interesting item is Skys programming will be supplied to TelstraClear customers. There seems to be a lot of details missing from the news item. Hopefully there will be more on this in the next few days.

Another WWF feed spotted via 701 3769 rhc "WWF Livewire" 11 a.m Syd time Saturdays



From my Emails & ICQ


From Chris Pickstock

2 pm SA time

On B1, 12397 H, sr 7200, NBC America is running. Currently showing "Law and Order", complete with adverts.


From the Dish


Asiasat 2 100.5E 3951 H "Pop Channel and Business and Finance Channel" are still on ,Irdeto, SIDs 1-2, PIDs 450/451 and 650/651.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3585 V "Star Vijay" has started on, Vpid 515 Apid 643.


NEWS


TelstraClear looks to Sky for TV content


From http://www.stuff.co.nz/inl/index/0,1008,1049279a13,FF.html

Sky Television will pick up thousands of new customers in the New Year when it begins supplying customers of TelstraClear with its sport, news and movie channels.

TelstraClear's 26,000 pay-TV subscribers in Wellington and Christchurch will receive Sky's programming from the beginning of February, effectively making Sky the only major pay TV operator in the country.

Analysts widely expected TelstraClear to withdraw from the content side of providing pay TV services and seek a wholesaling arrangement with Sky, its dominant competitor in the pay TV market.

That was first forecast in August when TelstraSaturn pulled the plug on plans for a satellite pay TV service that would have reached customers outside Wellington and Christchurch.

TelstraClear spokesman Quentin Bright said most of the content arrangements would remain when Sky assumed responsibility for the service.

Saturn Sport would be dropped from the mix in favour of Sky's sport channels and a couple of other channels would be the subject of negotiations between Sky and foreign content providers.

The deal mirrors a bundling arrangement Sky has had in place with Telecom since March.

The Sky-Fi deals offered by the two companies combine Internet access, phone line rental and pay TV services and have so far been moderately successful.

Mr Bright said TelstraSaturn's $49.90 entry-level pay TV and telephone service would be maintained, but price changes would arise when subscribers chose various combinations of Sky channels.

TelstraClear's chief executive, Rosemary Howard, said the deal was a sign of the "buy-build" strategy TelstraClear would be pursuing, where the company would more actively seek wholesale and resale deals with other companies rather than invest heavily in building its own infrastructure.


Prime gets serious with Packer


From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay.cfm?storyID=383929&thesection=news&thesubsection=general

Prime Television has formed an alliance with media mogul Kerry Packer, giving it the programming strength of one of Australia's biggest networks.

Channel Nine, owned by Mr Packer's company Publishing and Broadcasting, will share programmes with Prime and work with the network to secure international rights to movies, shows and sport.

Mr Packer's New Zealand publishing arm, Australian Consolidated Press, which includes Woman's Day among its publications, will be involved in advertising and cross-promotions with Prime.

The partnership will turn Prime into a serious competitor to the free-to-air networks, TVNZ and TV3.

A spokesman for TVNZ said Nine's involvement suggested more competition from Prime and increased pressure on advertising revenue, which has declined.

Prime says it will broaden its audience to target younger viewers but will not alienate its present targeted audience of over 30.

Australian-owned Prime has operated in New Zealand since 1998, building a loyal audience with a schedule of mainly British drama, comedy and documentaries.

Prime general manager Warwick Syphers said Prime could not secure big supply deals with programme suppliers.

"Nine brings to the table 'access' in black, bold letters. These guys bring a lot of programming clout," he said yesterday.

Prime will not be able to screen Nine's international shows which are already owned by TVNZ or TV3 through international supply deals.

"Those [deals] that are in the market can't be interrupted.

"But over time, as those become available to the market, clearly we would be the partner to Nine for the telecast rights."

Prime was keen to get sports rights through the partnership, he said.

Nine is regarded as a channel with a strong lineup of sport and current affairs which caters to an older audience.

The Prime NZ board will be changed.

Former TVNZ chief executive Brent Harman becomes Prime NZ chairman and Mr Syphers is chief financial officer. A new chief executive will be appointed by Nine.

Prime's coverage will be expanded to cover areas such as Rotorua, Taupo, New Plymouth and Nelson.


Packer rescues struggling Prime NZ


Kerry Packer's Publishing & Broadcasting has come to the rescue of Prime's unprofitable New Zealand TV station, forming a content and advertising partnership which further expands PBL's presence across the Tasman.

Under the five-year agreement revealed yesterday, PBL's Nine Network will supply free of charge all its wholly owned programming to Prime New Zealand and use its sales force to sell advertising on the station. The New Zealand arm of PBL's ACP magazine division will provide advertising and cross-promotional support for Prime New Zealand.

In return for its content and advertising sales, PBL has been granted an option to acquire 50 per cent of Prime New Zealand at any stage over the next five years. Should PBL exercise that option, it will pay Prime 50 per cent of any funding Prime contributed to the business during the term of the agreement.

A new Prime New Zealand board will be established with equal representation from Nine and Prime. Nine chief executive David Leckie and chief financial officer Brett Daley will be directors and Nine will also have the right to appoint the New Zealand chief executive.

The PBL deal is a long awaited resolution to Prime's New Zealand woes. Prime has spent $40 million on the station since it bought a licence to broadcast there in August 1997. Prime Television New Zealand has struggled to convert ratings gains into revenue and booked a pre-tax loss of $10.8 million last year.

Prime expects an "immediate improvement" in the financial performance of the station now that it has teamed up with PBL. "At the worst we would be very disappointed if it wasn't getting to profitability on a monthly basis by next calendar year. That's a cautious outlook," said finance director Darryl Guihot.

Prime shares jumped 9c to $2.04 and PBL rose 4c to $9.71.

This deal follows PBL's acquisition of New Zealand trade publisher Liberty Press a month ago. Since losing $330 million on the failure of One.Tel, PBL will now invest only in businesses that are cashflow positive and related to its core media and gaming operations.

"This partnership with Prime NZ enables Nine to achieve a beachhead for television in New Zealand," said PBL chief executive Peter Yates.

Prime blamed continued speculation over the future of its New Zealand TV business for advertisers' reluctance to buy airtime on the station. "What the business needed more than anything was a catalyst to demonstrate to the market that Prime is here to stay. This is a new beginning," said Mr Guihot.

Prime and PBL expect the addition of Nine Network programming to Prime New Zealand to spur its ratings growth. The station's coverage will also be expanded from 75 per cent of the population to 90 per cent.


(Craigs comment, they could have %100 coverage within days if they hop in with the TVNZ service on B1 on unecrypt the signal in the Sky service")


PRESS RELEASE

GlobeCast Increases C-band Capacity on AsiaSat

Hong Kong, 21st December 2001... Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat) and GlobeCast announced today the signing of a new lease agreement for half of a 36 MHz C-band transponder on AsiaSat 2.

Under the new agreement, GlobeCast takes up additional C-band capacity on AsiaSat 2, to be used by Satlink Communications, one of the largest satellite service providers in the Middle East region.

Satlink Communications uses the AsiaSat 2 capacity to launch a MCPC (Multiple Channels per Carrier) platform for the transmission of five digital television channels to Japan and the rest of Asia.

Speaking about the new lease agreement, GlobeCast’s Nigel Gibson, Head of TV Channel Distribution said “we have been using AsiaSat 2 since the beginning of 1999. We are very impressed by the wide coverage and high power of AsiaSat 2 over Asia and Middle East, as well as its excellent turnaround capability and connectivity with other European and Middle Eastern satellites”.

?We are very pleased that GlobeCast added more capacity on AsiaSat 2. AsiaSat 2 has been very successful in establishing itself as a multilingual and multicultural broadcast platform linking Asia and the Middle East, as well as Europe. We anticipate that the launch of additional television services from Satlink would enhance our representation as one of the most popular TV Hotbirds in the regions,” said Peter Jackson, Chief Executive Officer of AsiaSat.

GlobeCast is a global leader in professional broadcasting and Internet delivery via satellite. It offers a one-stop shop source for full range of broadcast and Internet-driven services, from mobile newsgathering and event coverage, to studio production and post-production, DBS and DTH transmission, IP multicasting and two-way satellite Internet connectivity. GlobeCast is the satellite services arm of France Telecom created in 1997 and is now the world’s largest provider of end-to-end transmission and production services for video, audio and broadband Internet content.

Satlink specialises in operating and installing video and audio satellite transmission systems. The company operates a main service centre located on the Highway between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, Israel. With 17 antennas for reception and 7 earth stations for uplink, Satlink is one of the largest satellite service providers in the Middle East region.

AsiaSat 2, a Lockheed Martin Series 7000 model, carries twenty 36 MHz and four 72 MHz C-band, as well as nine 54 MHz Ku-band linearised transponders. Its C-band footprint covers 53 countries embracing Asia, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Australasia and the C.I.S. AsiaSat 2 also has a high-power Ku beam serving the Greater China region, Korea and Japan.

AsiaSat is Asia’s leading provider of high-quality satellite services to both the broadcast and telecommunications markets. AsiaSat serves telecommunications customers for public telephone networks, private VSAT networks and high speed Internet and multimedia services. AsiaSat plans to launch a further satellite, AsiaSat 4 to be positioned at 122 degrees East in mid 2002. AsiaSat is a wholly owned subsidiary of Asia Satellite Telecommunications Holdings Limited, listed on both the Hong Kong (SEHK: 1135HK) and New York (NYSE: SAT) stock exchanges.


Vinasat to fly on Proton?


From [sat-index] 21 Dec 2001

The Russian Science Academy and Vietnam's National Centre for
Natural Sciences and Technologies have completed a project
"Concept of Building and Developing Satellite Communications in
Vietnam," VNA news agency reported on its web site.

The report said that the Vinasat project was under way with
the involvement of numerous Vietnamese and Russian institutes
including Russian satellite manufacturer NPO-PM, which joined
the project in 2000.

According to a Russian Science Academy official [whose name
was incorrectly given as Prof Valery Resetnicov], Vinasat would
have 28 to 30 transponders and could be launched atop a Russian
Proton rocket. Russia could also help Vietnam establishing a
ground control station, or build one in Russia at Vietnam's
request, the professor was quoted as saying.

Vietnam is also working on an Earth resource satellite dubbed
Vinzor, the article noted.




21/12/01

Not much to report. Keep on emailing BBCworld and let's see if they can change their mind or provide an alternative FTA source of BBC World for us satellite viewers. I will suggest to them since they are already on terrestrial in NZ overnight on TV1 that they go full time with a 24 hour service FTA inside the TVNZ mux on B1. But that won't help those in Eastern Australia / Indonesia and Pacific Islands. The ideal solution would be for them to pop up on Palapa C2. in a FTA format. Has anyone got a reply back from them yet? I updated the email address send email to reception@bbc.co.uk

I did some checking in the early hours of this morning NZ time. 4 A.M NZ on I701, 3769 Mux,"channel 4" WWF Smackdown 13/12/01 episode was just starting. The other WWF show "Livewire" is on Saturday around lunchtime. There was also some kind of Euro Soccer show on Channel 1 around 1.30pm NZ I only caught the end of it so don't know what it was exactly.

Anyway if the sites a bit late (usually is Friday nights) it's because I have gone to start my Christmas shopping

Have a look at this Link, Bo Wall in Swedens setup, you may have seen his name at Lyngsat, this is his 4.5M "Project Dish"

http://hem.passagen.se/parabol/stora_projektet_450m.htm



From my Emails & ICQ


Several emails from dealers and enthusiasts who are upset about the BBC World situation. Hopefully we will get some feedback from them soon.


From the Dish


PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS Asia and Asia Plus" are encrypted in Viaccess.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3951 H "Pop Channel and Business and Finance Channel" have left,are not encrypted.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3827 V "Jiangsu Communication Radio" has started on , Apid 257, right channel.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3708 V "Occasional feeds" on , Sr 13020, FEC 3/4.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V "The test cards have left"
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3704 V "The occasional feeds have left"


NEWS


Nothing to report




20/12/01

Not good news, the Satfacts page has been updated with news of BBC World leaving Pas 2 and encrypting via Pas 8. Seems strange considering recent announcements that they will remain FTA via Pas 10. The Asia/Pacific region has plenty of FTA news channels. Fox News, ERA news, Channel News Asia, Worldnet, FTV news and probably others I have missed but BBC World is one of the most popular FTA channels. This will mean no more FTA BBC World unless you are in the Pas 10 footprint. I suggest people email them at reception@bbc.co.uk to let them know how you feel about the situation. I am interested in any replies received so forward a copy to me if you can.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Ren

A screenshot of MTV China on Pas 8




From the Dish


Intelsat 701 180E 4086 L "Canal + Polynesie, RFO Tempo Tahiti, the occasional feeds, RFI and France
Culture" have left. (maybe they didn't pay theiir bills again?)

Optus B1 160E New PIDs for ABC TV NSW and the ABC TV 4 test card on 12670 H, 12688 H
and 12706 H: 1101/1102 and 1301/1302.

Sinosat 1 110.5E 4088 V "Macau Satellite TV" has started on, Sid 2, Vpid 350 Apid 351.

Asiasat 3 105.5E 12595 H "Pop Channel and Business and Finance Channel" are now encrypted.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3951 H "Pop Channel and Business and Finance Channel" are now encrypted.


NEWS


PBL sails across Tasman


From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,3459544%255E462,00.html

PUBLISHING & Broadcasting is believed to be close to agreeing to a deal with Prime Television that will allow it to expand its Nine Network franchise across the Tasman.

PBL is expected to become a joint venture partner with Prime on its loss-making New Zealand TV business, Prime New Zealand.

While details are sketchy, it is believed PBL will pay only part of the amount needed for the deal in cash. The remainder will be contributed via a programming agreement.

That could see Nine's locally produced programs such as Getaway and This is Your Life screen in New Zealand.

Prime has said it wants any partner to help fund the transformation of its New Zealand business from a regional TV network to a national brand.

Prime has bought licences to national frequencies across NZ but has been unable to fund a national roll-out.

PBL's move would signal an increasing NZ presence.

The deal follows an increase in its NZ magazine operations with the recent purchase of classified advertising publisher Liberty Press.

Prime New Zealand last year recorded a loss before earnings and tax of $10.7 million. But chief executive Brent Harman has maintained that advertisers will not commit to the network until its corporate structure has been finalised.

PBL is believed to have settled on Prime because the NZ Labor Government has indicated the TVNZ franchises are not for sale. The only alternative has been the stations owned by CanWest Global, the Ten Network's parent company.

But CanWest is expected to sell its NZ television assets to Ten.

According to NZ's marketing industry peak body, the Communications Agencies Association of New Zealand, the total TV industry generated $NZ501 million ($404 million) in advertising revenue in 2000, which represented 33.7 per cent of ad spend.

Newspapers gained the largest chunk of revenue, with $NZ596 million or 40 per cent.

Mr Harman did not return calls and a PBL spokeswoman said they did not comment on speculation.


APSC's Kwon confident about Christmas Island spaceport financing


From [sat-index] 19 Dec 2001

David Kwon, head of Australia's Asia-Pacific Space Centre,
said construction of the commercial spaceport on Christmas Island
would begin by March 2002.

Mr Kwon said: "This is the first time any company has had a
legally binding contract from Russia. This project is going
ahead ­ 100 percent."

But details are still scarce. Mr Kwon said that finance would
come from the U.S. and South Korea. For instance, South Korean
PC-maker Sambo Computer has a stake in the project.

Mr Kwon, who is currently in Seoul, South Korea, said he was
negotiating with a "potential strategic partner" but declined to
elaborate.

The Australian government is to support the venture with no
more than A$100 million (US$51 million, EUR57 million).

Russia's Aerospace Agency recently signed an agreement on
commercial launches from Australia's Christmas Island using
Aurora [Avrora] rockets. While the agency's head Yuri Koptev
said there would be four or five launches a year, Mr Kwon stated
the Russians had been contracted to provide launch vehicles for
up to 15 satellite launches a year.


U.S.-Chinese programme exchange


From [sat-index] 19 Dec 2001

News Corp.'s Star Television group announced a deal that gives
it permission to broadcast in China . In exchange, News Corp.'s
American television unit, Fox, will carry China Central
Television's channel 9 on cable systems on the U.S. west coast,
and by digital satellite in the rest of the country.

"From 1 April 2002, CCTV-9 will formally downlinked to
concerned networks in the area of San Francisco and Los Angeles,
" Zhao Huayong, president of China's state-run national
broadcaster CCTV, said at the signing ceremony.

CCTV 9 is a 24-hour channel broadcasting cultural programmes,
nature and travel shows, language and cooking lessons and news.

"At the same time a comprehensive Chinese entertainment
channel will be downlinked to the concerned networks in the areas
of Zhaoqing and Guangzhou," he said.

The Star channel will be created specifically for the Chinese
market and will broadcast a mix of movies, sports, dramas and
other general entertainment in Mandarin Chinese, said James R
Murdoch, chairman of Hong Kong-based Star.

Ding Guangen, head of the Communist Party's publicity
department, reportedly said that "the agreement is a good start
for our co-operation, which will be further developed in steps."




19/12/01

Sorry not much today just have not had time.


From the Dish


Agila 2 146E 3843 H "NBN" has left, (can anyone get this off Palapac2)?


NEWS


Australian Launch Sites


From [sat-index] 18 Dec 2001

Russia's Aerospace Agency has signed an agreement on space
launches from Australia's Christmas Island but some details of
the deal still need to be finalised, the agency's Director Yuri
Koptev said.

The contract with the Asia Pacific Space Centre (APSC) was
signed last weekend. Work on the project will begin in February
2002, Koptev said. The first launch from the Indian Ocean island,
located 1,565 km northwest of the Australian mainland, is
expected around the end of 2004 — about one year later than
originally envisaged.

Some issues so far have not been resolved. For instance, the
partners still have to sign an agreement on protection of
sensitive Russian technology. In addition, it seems that the
Australian side demands launch guarantees which the Russians
consider excessive. Koptev said he expected the parties to come
to a final agreement by February 2002.

Satellites will be launched atop Russia's new Aurora [Avrora]
rocket, an upgraded version of the Soyuz launch vehicle. The
Aurora can carry a payload of up to 12 metric tons into a low
orbit, significantly enhancing the Soyuz's capacity of seven
metric tons. However, much of that advantage is owing to
Christmas Island's proximity to the equator, which allows
rockets to carry heavier cargoes to higher orbits compared with
launches from the Baikonur cosmodrome.

The Aurora launch vehicle is comprised of either three stages,
for delivering payloads into low earth orbit, or four stages to
deliver payloads to high-energy orbits including geosynchronous
transfer orbit [GTO]. The first Aurora flight tests will be
launched from Baikonur Cosmodrome.

The Asia Pacific Space Centre would stage between four and
five launches a year, Koptev said — significantly down from
earlier predictions that saw as many as 15 launches per year
from 2006.

Koptev gave a bleak outlook on the commercial satellite launch
market, which was shrinking instead of expanding. Over the next
five years, he expects no more than 32 to 34 launches to GTO per
year worldwide, and only seven to ten launches into low and
medium orbits.


No deal yet on Austar debt


From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,3459880%255E462,00.html

THE Commonwealth Bank is believed to be the only backer yet to approve the rollover of Austar United's $400 million debt facility – keeping the regional pay TV group on tenterhooks.

Austar has until December 31 to roll over the debt, otherwise the banks could demand repayment in the first quarter of 2002.

Austar's current bank financing is led by Toronto Dominion, JP Morgan and Citibank, but the consortium is believed to comprise up to 15 debt facilities with banks. CBA's exposure may be as little as $30 million.

If the consortium demands repayment, Austar has said it will pursue other options: seek funding from its 81 per cent owned parent UnitedGlobalCom (UGC), sell assets or seek external financing.

CBA spokesman Bryan Fitzgerald said yesterday that the bank would not comment because of customer confidentiality.

Austar spokesman Bruce Meagher also declined to comment, other than to say: "We hope to get an agreement."

Chief executive John Porter has said he hopes to have the refinancing settled before Christmas.

"It will be done by then or I'll be handing the keys to somebody," he said in a recent interview.

"I think it will get done. This is not the time for the banks to pull the rug from under us."

Mr Porter has attempted to appease the banks by offering security over extra Austar assets, such as its half-share of programming group XYZ Entertainment and its interest in New Zealand broadband group Telstra Saturn.

And earlier this month the company announced a major restructure designed to save $90 million in annual costs.

The restructure strategy included outsourcing the group's pay TV sales and installation processes, as well as closing its microwave network and internet backbone.

Austar has recently been encouraged by news that UGC has been recapitalised by Liberty Media, which is controlled by US cable boss John Malone.

Before that, UGC was in dire financial straits.

In November, it was forced to default on interest payments on bonds issued to partly fund its Austar stake.

Liberty's move – which has seen UGC's share price more than double to $US3.44 – means that can be paid.

It also means there is greater likelihood of the parent company again coming to Austar's rescue if CBA does not agree to the debt rollover.

Earlier this year, UGC was forced to take up the majority of a $201 million rights issue offered in May.

Austar United's share price closed up 3c yesterday at 30c.


Bank gives Austar jitters


From http://australianit.news.com.au/articles/0,7204,3460762%5E15309%5E%5Enbv%5E,00.html

JOHN Porter's hopes of a relaxing Christmas break are fading as one of Austar United Communications' 23 banks owed a total of $408 million by the regional pay TV operator is displaying reluctance to roll over a loan to Austar.

Commonwealth Bank is owed about $25 million and is seeking additional security, or might want out.

Porter and Austar are unfortunate that they are being forced to try to renegotiate the facility while all major economies are slowing.

The facility will be in default as Austar is unlikely to have met a condition which commits it to achieving a certain ratio of earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to debt by December 31.

Porter had been quietly confident the banks would allow a waiver to this condition in return for his offer of additional security in the form of Austar's half-share in the XYZ entertainment channels, the half-share of the Telstra Saturn cable joint venture in New Zealand, plus $100 million cash. The loan is secured against Austar's pay TV service, Austar Entertainment.

Although Austar is 81 per cent owned by the Denver-based UnitedGlobalCom, there is no sign yet that it will make real money. Austar will lose close to $400 million in the year to December 31.

Austar's cost base is high because it uses expensive satellite and microwave delivery to narrowcast to its 440,000 subscribers, who are spread out over wide areas of regional Queensland, NSW, South Australia and Victoria. It also suffers from the industry's highest rate of "churn" or disconnections, at 29 per cent of its subscriber base a year.

Every customer who quits necessitates the expensive removal of a satellite dish.

Waiting patiently in the wings is the metropolitan pay TV group, Foxtel. The Foxtel partners Telstra (50 per cent), News Corp (25 per cent) and Publishing & Broadcasting (25 per cent) have strong memories of the collapse of Austar's former associate pay TV group, Australis Media.

Australis collapsed in May 1998 after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission blocked a proposed merger with Foxtel.

The merger occurred anyway because Foxtel was able to acquire most of Australis's set-top boxes and then offer a satellite service to Australis's estimated 50,000 subscribers.

The parallels between Australis and Austar are disturbing. Austar has the advantage of having a strong parent, but UGC is under pressure itself and recently John Malone's Liberty Media topped up its interest to 76 per cent.

Foxtel wouldn't comment yesterday, but it would obviously be interested in acquiring Austar's big subscriber base, and Austar's half-share of XYZ.

It's hard to see the logic of the banks letting Austar go, but stranger things have happened.


Seven new Russian satellites by 2004


Russia plans to launch seven communications satellites over
the next three years, announced Russian Space Agency general
director Yuri Koptev.

The new satellites are to extend the capacity of Russia's
satellite fleet by 200 transponders.

Koptev was quoted as saying that the Russian government's
decision to take financial part in the programme's
implementation was very important. While the spacecraft and their
communications payloads are to be funded by stat-owned Russian
Space Communications Corporation (RSCC), the government pays the
launch costs directly.

Koptev said that currently 70 percent of Russian satellites in
orbit were beyond their service lives.


DD gets serious about kidstuff on new channel


http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011219/con5.html

From toons to news to ‘India-centric’ content. Anything that takes to get kids to switch to DD Bharti. Sounds funny? Well, Doordarshan is dead serious that this might just be the right mix to get young eyeballs looking at it again! The government-owned channel has decided to pack DD Bharati —- its new edutainment channel to be launched on January 26 next year —- with its brand of kidstuff hoping to lure 3-17 year olds with its unique selling proposition of “India-centric” content.

Pentamedia will be among software providers for cartoons and DD, in a tradition befitting the world’s largest democracy, also plans news programming “by the kids and for the kids”. Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts will also contribute to the programming. “We would prefer all content to be Indian over time,” chief executive officer of Prasar Bharati Corporation of India, Anil Baijal announced. Prasar Bharati runs DD and All India Radio.

DD Bharati will broadly have three programming blocks. A morning slot dedicated to health and fitness, the children’s block (2-8 pm) and the rest of the time to be filled by a judicious mix of art, music, culture and heritage programming.

A revolution on the idiot box? All Mr Baijal has to do is sell it to cable operators hoping they will bite the bait, if there is an audience for the channel. If one goes by precedents, the only way that such a channel could reach the people is through coercion. DD Bharati is likely to be made the “must show” channel for the cable operators. For now, though, Mr Baijal is trying charm.

Meanwhile, the new look DD Metro is likely to be in place by January 15, 2002. The channel has been surviving on reruns of successful programs of yesteryears since September 2001.


ESPN Star Sports switches distributors in Taiwan


From indiantelevision.com

Sports broadcaster ESPN Star Sports (ESS) has signed an agreement with Tai Chiang International Corporation (TCIC) to be the new distributor of both its ESPN and STAR channels in Taiwan. The contract with TCIC, effective 1 January, 2002, will replace the partnership currently held with Videoland.

Under the agreement TCIC will exclusively distribute the ESPN and Star Sports channels on cable and SMATV throughout Taiwan.

TCIC is a subsidiary of Yong Tong Communication Co. Ltd, Taiwan's largest channel distributor since 1999 and a leading sub-distributor since 1994.


18/12/01

Live chat tonight 8.30pm Syd time and 9pm NZ onwards. A courier just turned up with a replacement polar rotar motor from Telsat! A big thank you to them for such fast service. If it dosn't rain tommorow I will hook it up.


From my Emails & ICQ


An email from Eurosat RE: Reception in Perth , Australia

Craig, thanks for your interest. A copy of the press release is attached.

Europe*Star 1 orbits at 45 East, and details of the frequencies and polarisation are in the attached 'frequency plan' file. The extended coverage into Perth is off our South East Asia (SEA) beam, not indicated on most of our 'marketing-type' footprints
that show only the hotter areas of the footprints. The test itself was uplinked by GlobeCast from London, and received in a facility near Perth that I understand is operated by New Skies.

At the moment there is no TV traffic on the route into that beam, because (i) there doesn't appear to be much market for DTH TV within SE Asia, and (ii) because we currently have a lot of our capacity switched across to routes from India and Middle East to

Europe, for coverage of the events in Afghanistan. Consequently, there's nothing of interest for your Australian TV enthusiasts to tune into at the moment.

Recognising that the elevation angle in Perth is not great, Europe*Star 1 will probably never be used for DTH broadcasts into Australia, if only because it doesn't cover anything other than the western part of the country. However, for backhaul and
point-to-point data services between Australia and our other regions, or for broadcast services *out* of Australia, we do have a unique offer.... for example, an Australian broadcaster could reach directly into homes in Europe. Following this test, I am
trying to get a dialogue going with a number of service providers out in your part of the world, but if you have any ideas or contacts you think might be interesting, I'd be glad to hear them.


rgds.
Jonathan Barter
Director, Business Development


EUROPE*STAR LIMITED
5 NEW SQUARE BEDFONT LAKES FELTHAM MIDDLESEX TW14 8HA UNITED KINGDOM
TEL: +44 (0)20 8831 4509 FAX: +44 (0)20 8831 4597 MOBILE: +44 (0)7801 871827
Jonathan.barter@europestar.co.uk www.europestar.com
AN ALCATEL COMPANY - A Member of the LORAL Global Alliance


(Craig comment, The attached press release was the one I posted yesterday, perhaps there is a broadcaster out there who reads my site that may be interested in using that transponder to beam stuff into Australia or out of.)


From John Tian


Hi, Craig

Do you know if it is possible to receive pas8 ku Australia beam with 3 meter
dish in Auckland. I have seem an artical in SatFacts regarding ku coverage, but

I can't find it now.

Thanks
John Tian


(Craigs comment, I think you will need at least a 5 M solid dish for reliable Ku reception off the Australia beam)


From John Vandeven 17/12/01

GWN and WIN West on Aurora are FTA a present.

Best Regards

John Vandeven
Manager
www.johnselectronics.com.au


From the Dish


PAS 2 169E 3771 H "SBS" is now encrypted.

PAS 8 166E 3740 H "MTV China" has replaced "MTV Korea" on , Sid 2, Vpid 289 APid 291
PAS 8 166E 12366 H "Fashion TV" Sr 27500 Fec 3/4

Optus B3 156E 12532 V "Zee Music, Alpha TV Punjabi and Asianet Bharathi" have left.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V New SID and PIDs for the Les Amis de TV test card , Sid 10 / 30 and 769/770. Both test cards are now encrypted.

Yamal 102 90E 3784 L New SR for GTRK Dalnevostochnaya on : 3200.


NEWS


Sky digital service's 'great leap backwards'


From http://www.nzherald.co.nz

Sky Television's digital subscribers say they are frustrated by the slow pace of the service since new interactive software was introduced.

Some channel surfers are feeling wiped out by the length of time it is taking to scroll through channels, and then discovering their television screen has "locked up".

Sky says it started downloading the software to its 300,000 digital customers about three weeks ago.

It is designed to offer extra services, such as e-mail and games, and a more detailed electronic programme guide. .

The guide provides information on programmes and channels.

Sky admits it is having problems and says engineers are working to fix the "bugs" in the system.

"We've had some teething problems with the new software we've introduced," said Tony O'Brien, communications manager for Sky TV.

People who found their screens locked up were advised to reset their decoder by switching it off at the power supply for 30 seconds, he said.

Subscribers have told the Herald that they can no longer flick through channels with ease, with some waiting up to five seconds for the television to register their next choice.

One subscriber, Auckland doctor David Black, said the changes were "a spectacular leap backwards".

Dr Black, an occupational physician who specialises in information technology medicine, said people were pushing buttons on their remote control more often than necessary.

The on-screen menu was difficult to read and he doubted elderly viewers or people with impaired vision would be able to read the information.

"The chosen colour ratios are terrible. Having white text against a blue background gives a hopeless contrast.

"It's very hard to see the letters. ... I think people with visual impairment would find it impossible [to read]."

Subscribers have told the Herald that they have experienced frozen screens, complete break-up of the picture, and programme information being "not available" or "not supplied".

"It's extremely slow when changing channels ... and most times shows a message to say the channel is not available, and then the next moment the selected channel appears," said one Sky customer.

Mr O'Brien said it was hoped the system would be improved by Christmas. It was unlikely the service would be as fast as the one it replaced because of the additional information it provided.


Sports channel on Zee bouquet soon?


From indiantelevision.com

ESPN Star Sports may finally have some decent competition. There has been talk in the industry for a while now that a sports channel - backed by Sharjah cricket series' head honcho Abdulrahman Bukhatir - may be launching in the near future.

National broadcaster Doordarshan's DD Sports channel is there of course but being government backed, the equation is not quite the same.

Industry sources indicate a deal is in the final stages of negotiations which will see the channel being launched as part of the Zee bouquet. No dates have been fixed though.

Taj Sports, the company that Bukhatir set up to produce sports television programming out of Sharjah, which includes cricket, is said to be the channel's promoter company. Chris McDonald, former ESPN Star Sports senior V-P, advertising and integrated sales, and the man Bukhatir hired to head Taj Sports, will be running the show, the sources say.

What the channel will be providing - if and when it takes off - as far as programming is concerned is still unclear (other than the Sharjah cricket series that is). One could of course argue that that would still be better than what Sony's MAX offers by way of cricket (Bangladesh and Seven's cricket in Hong Kong).

With HBO, Cartoon Network and CNN having just been added to Zee's bouquet with the announcement of a joint venture with Turner International (India) Private Ltd, Zee will be able to offer a complete subscriber package if the Sports channel takes off.

It should be recalled however, that Zee has been trying unsuccesfully to launch a sports channel for well on two years now. This time the tale may be different though; what with Bukhatir supposedly bankrolling the channel.


Zee-Turner joint venture leaves core issues unaddressed


From http://www.hindustantimes.com/nonfram/181201/detECO08.asp

The announcement of the 74:26 Zee-Turner joint venture could not have been timed better. In the latest television ratings, the refurbished Zee TV has hit rock-bottom with just one programme in the top 50.

Zee TV, the flagship channel has now been firmly relegated to number 3. In the primetime slot, its channel share has slipped to 4.44 per cent as compared to Sony's 8.2 per cent and Star Plus's 19.4 per cent.

With content not being "king", it is the distribution leg which is being pump-pressed. The JV company Zee Turner Pvt Ltd will be distributing 14 channels from Zee, three from the Turner stable and one (Nickelodeon) from Viacom. It will pass on the revenues to the broadcasters concerned retaining only 10 per cent of the collections as commission.

While the marketing JV fell far short of the expectations of an equity investment, analysts insist that it has nevertheless considerable upsides for Zee.

Through the JV Zee's bouquet is bolstered by strong channels like HBO, Cartoon Network and CNN. The combination seems unbeatable and strong enough to counter the rival Star bouquet.

Said Bharat Parekh, media analyst at DSP Merrill Lynch: "The joint venture gives Zee immense power in the pay market. It will help Zee in increasing its connectivity which will add straight to the bottomline. Even if it is able to increase connectivity by 15-20 percent and manage a price hike in the near future, it will derive better subscription revenues." Meanwhile, Delhi's cable operators have switched off Zee in certain pockets.

However, there are serious overlapping issues in the new bouquet offering, according to a report by Motilal Oswal. Zee in its bouquet offering has another Hollywood movie channel — Zee MGM. How will HBO and Zee MGM fit in the same bouquet? Yet another issue is that of Zee News and CNN together when there is already a exclusive content sharing deal.

"It will be difficult to get people to pay for two news channels from the same bouquet," adds a Mumbai analyst.

Moreover, according to the report the core issues dogging Zee remain. Thorny issues of management quality, transparency, disclosure standards and unauthorised advances to group companies are not addressed. Zee badly requires funds for
debt repayment, building the HFC network and acquiring the last mile. "Debtor days on a consolidated basis has touched 180 days, clearly indicating stress in the business," adds the report.

The report is neutral on the marketing JV leading to a strategic partnership. Parekh, however is more bullish.

"It is too early to expect the equity investment. Such deals take time to fructify specially in today's depressed global scenario," he says.

He further adds, "while the JV might not be the panacea for Zee, but it is not a negative development as well."

ALLIANCE DETAILS

Pros:

+ouquet size and spread increases
?Strong movie channel HBO and kids channel Cartoon Network added
?Pool of marketing expertise from both Zee and Turner

Cons:

?Zee-MGM and HBO clash in the market; Ditto for Zee News and CNN
-ifficult to sell two similar pay channels




17/12/01

The Aardvark website (read todays page here , http://www.aardvark.co.nz/ ) has a good column on Sky NZ's problems, it's about time someone got stuck into Sky considering they have a monpoly on the NZ pay tv market. The new "software upgrade" for interactive is a huge joke. As reported in Coops Tech Digest the hardware is far to slow for what they are trying to do. They need to get their prioritys right basic things like changing channels should not take 5 seconds to flick between channels. The onscreen program guide is hopelessly slow, as for the games the Commodore 64 home computer back in 83 did a better job. My idea would be for them to stick with the slow older kind of games and forget arcade games. Now this could be a money spinner, how about a "Sky Casino" you purchase credits to play games such as Poker and Pokey machines, these are quite basic and would suit the Sky hardware. You could play for prizes such as free PPV movies, extra channels and other items.

I saw a few interesting things last night, at 3 a.m NZ I was having a look around Pas 2 and found that the SBS channel in the Korean mux runs a "Blockbuster movie" (Sunday night movie I guess over there) it was just starting. On the right audio channel it had an english soundtrack. This one could be worth checking. At 3.50 a.m I switched over to Much TV in the TVBS mux and caught Linda being voted off on Survivor 3, once again it was in English but with subtitles and other onscreen "junk" After Survivor Ally Mc Beal was on , same as before in English with Subs and they were fairly recent episodes.

A check of the Korean mux today at 5pm NZ finds it gone! have the left?

Some good stuff in the news section today be sure to have a read.

HAPPY Anniversary LYNGSAT 6 YEARS ONLINE where would we be without them?

Satfacts page updated, some interesting news there of encryption of a popular channel.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Chris Pickstock 16/12/01

B1, 12397 H, Vpid 308, Apid 256, NSL Soccer feed. No idea who will be playing as game has not started yet.

Chris


From the Dish


Intelsat 701 180E 11610 H EuroNews and EuroSport have left

Apstar 1 138 3860 V "MTV Taiwan (enc.) and MTV China (clear)" have started on, SIDs 1-2, PIDs 273/275 and 289/291.

Telkom 1 108E 3496 H Sr 19615, Fec 3/4 A new mux has started line-up:
Global TV tests, TVRI, National Geographic Adventure 1, SCTV and RCTI.
For PIDs, see Lyngsat chart.
(T Kameda)

Telkom 1 108E 3586 H Sr 17800, Fec 3/4 A new mux has started, line-up:
TVRI, MTV Asia, TV 5 Asie and Channel NewsAsia.
For PIDs, see Lyngsat chart.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3799 H "APTN Asia" is still mainly FTA.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3569 H "Video Italia, Lig TV, Future TV USA and BK 063 Sat" have left.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3480 H "A Unitel mux has started" , Sr 26667, Fec 3/4, global
beam, line-up: Future TV USA, BK 063 Sat, Lig TV and Video Italia. (all encrypted)

PAS 10 68.5E 3863 V "Big Brother South Africa" has left

Gorizont 32 53E 3741 R "Tajik TV" has left.


NEWS


Europe Star Goes Down Under


From satnewsasia.com

A successful direct Ku-band satellite transmission test between Europe and Australia using small antennas and equipment has confirmed the coverage and flexibility of the Europe Star 1 satellite.

This “extreme connectivity” extends the reach of Europe Star, and opens new possibilities for satellite communications across eastern Asia, including single-hop Ku-band transmissions of broadcast quality material in both directions between Europe and Australia.

Europe Star is a joint venture between Alcatel Space of France and Loral Space & Communications of the USA, Europe Star is a member of the Loral Global Alliance. Europe Star offers satellite capacity on its two geostationary satellites, leasing whole and fractional transponders for full-time and occasional use requirements. In service since the start of 2001, Europe Star 1 has five high-power beams covering Europe, Southern Africa, the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent and South East Asia.

Europe Star 1 has five high-power beams covering Europe, Southern Africa, the Middle East, the Indian subcontinent and South East Asia.

During the test run from an earth station in the United Kingdom, an unmodulated carrier was transmitted to Europe Star 1, and received at a teleport near Perth, Western Australia using a 1.8-meter antenna. The test was performed and recorded by independent organizations and verified by Europe Star’s monitoring station in Singapore.

Richard Ward, Europe Star’s Director of Engineering, described the test as impressive, especially since a small carrier and receive antenna were used. “With suitable parameters, we would expect availability of 99.9% or even 99.99% to be achievable, which means for example that Australian broadcasters would have direct access to audiences in Europe and our other regions,” according to Ward.

Europe Star operates its own mission control center in Toulouse, France, for tracking, telemetry & control of its satellites. Europe Star is a satellite owner-operator headquartered in London, with regional marketing offices in Cape Town, South Africa and New Delhi, India.

Its Europe Star B satellite provides additional capacity for markets in Central and Eastern Europe. Europe Star is also an investor in Stellat, a joint venture with France Telecom, which will launch the Stellat 5 satellite during 2002


Alcatel Space wins US$118m Contract from APT


From satnewsasia.com

APT Satellite Holdings Ltd., operator of the Apstar satellite constellation, and Alcatel Space have signed a US$118 million contract that will allow APT to provide advanced broadband multimedia, new digital television services and traditional telecommunications services to telecom and television operators in the region, a statement said.

Under the agreement, Alcatel Space will be involved in designing, manufacturing and delivering a high-capacity telecommunication satellite and its associated ground segment, for APT.

In particular, the company will supply its SB4000 geostationary telecommunications satellite for APT's Apstar 5B. The satellite has a footprint that extends over almost the entire Asia Pacific; will also enhance terrestrial reception quality and reduce the size of satellite receiving dishes.

The price includes launch servicing costs, on site support, training and costs of the satellite control center and baseband equipment. Delivery and launch of Apstar 5B is scheduled for July 2004.

The spacecraft will be a backup satellite for Apstar 5, which was to be launched on a Chinese Chang Zheng rocket in February 2003 in order to replace Apstar I at 138 degrees East. Apstar 1 is due to end service in mid-2004.

The U.S. government, however, has not granted an export license to Apstar 5. News reports suggested that pending licenses for satellite exports to China were likely to be delayed indefinitely by the Bush administration.

Alcatel Space president and CEO Jean-Claude Husson said this first contract with APT represents a significant achievement in Alcatel’s partnership with a leading satellite operator in the Asia Pacific region. “Alcatel Space is committed to enabling our valuable customers to be at the forefront of new broadband markets and applications,” said Husson.

There are three in-orbit Apstar satellites. Apstar 1 is outfitted with 24, low-power (16W) C-band transponders. To cover the East Asian region (PRC, Hong Kong, Japan, Singapore, Indonesia, and Vietnam), APSTAR 1 began operations at 138 degrees E under a lease arrangement with Tonga

Apstar-1A has the same coverage as Apstar-1 but its footprint was enhanced with the inclusion of India. The satellite has 24 C-Band medium power transponders used for the same communications services as Apstar-1. Twelve of these transponders have been assigned for the India coverage.

Apstar-2R uses the FS-1300 communication satellite built by Space Systems/Loral Inc. This satellite has 28 C-Band and 16 Ku-Band transponders. The C-Band footprint covers Asia, Europe, Africa and Australia.


NDS Group and Israeli Operator Yes TV Announce the Introduction of Interactive Services


Israel’s DBS Satellite Services, operator of Yes TV, and NDS Group (a subsidiary of News Corporation) have successful introduced interactive services using NDS' Value@TV infrastructure solution.

The interactive services are built on Yes's existing digital platform incorporating NDS’ Open VideoGuard conditional access technology. Value@TV allows the deployment of a wide range of interactive services at the touch of a button, and creating new revenue opportunities for Yes. Over 225,000 subscribers access Yes services via some 500,000 set top boxes deployed since mid-2000.

Yes viewers can now access a range of new services including personalized classified ads, games and informational services created by Zoe Interactive. For example, a portal screen gives access to a wide range of interactive applications, while car and property sales can be viewed via a classified ads service developed by NDS's iPartner Zoom (Taldor). Information services created by Zoe Interactive provides content for interactive local, international, sports, arts, and business news. Interactive games from Goome are also available.

NDS' Value@TV services are being used by leading TV operators and channels worldwide. In the past year, NDS' Value@TV infrastructure has been used to develop applications for BSkyB, DIRECTV Latin America, QVC The Shopping Channel, the Discovery Network Europe, Music Choice, MTV and Nickelodeon.

The NDS iPartners program helps innovative interactive TV developers create and market applications based on NDS' Value@TV infrastructure in the emerging digital TV markets, such as Israel. NDS’ iPartners have enabled Yes to offer viewers enhanced products and expanded services on existing infrastructure.

With its partners, NDS is able to offer a complete interactive package to broadcasters such as Yes, which generates additional revenues, increases audience retention, and provides viewers with new and entertaining services.


(Craigs comment, take note Sky NZ!)


Canada canvasses digital copyright bill


From http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1005-200-8182060.html?tag=mn_hd

A small Canadian company fighting to show U.S. television programs on the Internet remains in limbo this week, as lawmakers consider amendments to the country's copyright laws that could set important new digital broadcasting rules.

A copyright bill was presented to Parliament on Wednesday, capping two years of contentious debate over nascent services that capture broadcasts of hit shows such as NBC's "Frasier" and make them available online.

Canada allows retransmission of broadcasts for satellite and cable companies under compulsory license, which permits the use of copyrighted material under a royalty rate set by law. It has been unclear, however, whether Internet retransmissions are covered by the current rules.

"This bill will clarify that the compulsory license applies to cable and satellite companies, but will leave the door open for Internet companies, or anyone else for that matter, as a matter of regulation," said a spokesman for Canada's Department of Heritage, which handles copyright law in cooperation with the Department of Industry. He added that specific regulation will be worked out in the next few months.

Canada's proposed copyright amendments come as television broadcasters and copyright holders face increasing audience fragmentation spurred on by greater entertainment and programming choices, and a wave of new technologies that threaten to gut their traditional businesses.

While PCs cannot yet compete with television in viewing quality or breadth of available content, the Internet is viewed as a long-term threat to jealously guarded geographical broadcasting boundaries, which allow copyright holders and broadcasters to squeeze more money out of their products.

University of Ottawa law professor Michael Geist, an Internet law specialist, said the government may yet carve out a place for Internet broadcasts, provided certain geographical limits are enforced to ensure programs are seen only in Canada.

"Some are pushing for an Internet exception, but that's not going to happen," he said. "Others suggest that the government should not single out any one technology, but put a box around retransmission that makes it difficult but not impossible for Internet broadcasters."

Canada became a flashpoint for Internet broadcasting in late 1999 when a start-up called ICraveTV began offering online retransmissions of shows pulled off the airwaves, saying the practice was covered by Canada's compulsory license. Television broadcasters sued and quickly shut it down, however, arguing that the company had infringed their copyrights by making content available worldwide without permission.

The issue did not die, however: Canada's close proximity to the U.S. border, wide Internet availability and unique history of broadcast rights soon inspired a second company to test the Internet broadcast waters.

Montreal, Quebec-based JumpTV has been battling a coalition of broadcasters in Canada for much of the past year over similar issues, but has avoided a direct confrontation by seeking appropriate legal rulings before moving ahead with its plans. The company has said it is prepared to limit its broadcasts as much as possible to viewers in Canada, using so-called geo-tracking technology from partner Quova. It has also agreed to pay royalties just like satellite and cable providers, which pay 70 cents per subscriber a month for access to programming under rules stemming from the U.S.-Canada Free Trade Agreement.

JumpTV CEO Farrell Miller said he is now waiting to see how the proposed copyright amendments shake out in the details.

"Our view all along has been that different technologies shouldn't be treated differently when it comes to the compulsory license," he said. "We still have to wait to see what the regulations are to see the full ramifications of the bill."




16/12/01

No site update today taking a break.




15/12/01

Lots of readers emails today. Thanks to those who emailed me with suggestions and offers about the feed motor problem. I am arranging with Telsat to have it replaced.

Sunday 1 P.M Syd time (3.P.M NZ) WBC Boxing , "Holyfield vs Ruiz" this should show up on one of the Indonesian channels (Indosair or SCTV). I have moved my dish around to 701 I hope to see it there on 3769 RHC.



From my Emails & ICQ


From Glenn Gibson 15/12/01

MTV China (or Korea as listed at Lyngemark) is currently FTA on Pas 8 (N-sync special or something) details as follows.
3740 H, 27500, 2/3, audio 291, video289, pcr 289

Also if interested currently showing on pas 8 CNBC Feed is Jay Leno.
3900H, 27500, 3/4, Audio 710, video 518, pcr 8190


Glenn


From Siam Global 14/12/01


Re Your article on Europstar 45 E on the 13th, we were very excited when this satellite was launched as it has a S.E. Asia beam reaching directly from London to Bangkok. This beam however never seems to have been used, at least according to Lyngsat which, if you look, only lists the Europe and Middle East beams. Can Mr Lyngmark not give further information on the Asia Pacific beam mentioned in the article ?

Siam Global
Bangkok


(Craigs comment, one of my contacts says the following, " I estimate the asian spot beam to have an EIRP to PERTH of 41 /42 Dbw so a 1.8 m should work , other parts of OZZ are better favoured." there you go you guys with Universal LNBF that can get down as low as 45E take a look)


From Tony Drexal (FTA Satellite Service's) 14/12/01

A new transponder has started on Intelsat 701 (180deg E)

Freq 10.975
Sym 30000
Fec 3\4

Status: Scrambled (Mediaguard)

Currently Euro Sport and Euro News are running (Sport only in French, and News English or French selectable), but only in testing stage at present. More channels and re-organising of present services to occur very soon.

This means that two transponders 10.975 and 11.610 will be used by CanalSatellite Caledonie to broadcast to the Pacific and Australia.

***Channels currently on 11.610 will be undergoing some changes also, but most receivers such as Pioneer and Humax, will require the user to DELETE the current channels and then RELOAD for the new channels to be visible.***

Kind regards,
Tony Drexel. FTASS


From Chris Pickstock 14/12/01

Optus B3, 12532 V

Although I do not watch these channels as they are encrypted, I have just noticed that Zee Links 4, 5, and 6 no longer load.

Chris


(Craigs comment they are making a number of changes there, these were expected since around the 1st of this month, Zee's local website is http://www.zeelink.com.au/ more news about Zee in the News section)


From Ross Woollett (North Island NZ) (yes you aussies thats his real last name) 14/12/01


For Sale, all $NZ

3.7 m mesh dish with mount excluding lnb $900.00
2.4 m mesh dish with mount excluding lnb offers or swap for a digital receiver
these dishes are brand new and still in the box.

I also have a Metrix satellite metre to get rid of as it is not used now I have the spectrum analyser

Metrix satellite meter 12 months old offers

Contact details are (NZ phone numbers)

Home phone 07 823 6057
Mobile 029 279 3256
Fax 07 823 6087

Ross


From Andrew Harrison 14/12/01

The BQ on I701 4086 L has a new SR of 12250


Andrew Harrison.


From Salah Romane 14/12/01

Dear Craig and All,


Csat New Caledonia will have 3 more channels for the festive season starting the 18th of December.
Two days ago they experienced a technical glitch with one transponder trying to squeeze those new channels.

The new channels are:

TF6 ( Cinema, Soapies , Entertainment)
Action. ( another Film Channel for under 25 )
National Geographic.


Regards,
Salah


From the Dish


Palapa C2 113E 3880 H "TVRI" has started on , Sid 3, Vpid514 Apid 652.
Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "TVRI" has started on, Sid 3, Vpid 514 Apid 652.


NEWS


Zee to hold 74% stake in JV with Turner


From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k1/dec/dec38.htm

Zee Telefilms Limited and Turner International (India) Private Ltd, an AOL Time Warner Company, today announced an agreement to form a joint venture company, Zee Turner Private Ltd, to manage distribution and trade marketing for a bouquet of channels of the two companies and third party channels in India and South Asia.

The JV partners are currently seeking all relevant regulatory approvals, an official release states.

Zee will hold 74 per cent equity and Turner 26 per cent in the joint venture. The company will be based in New Delhi. The board of directors will comprise three directors nominated by Zee and one by Turner. DP Naganand, director of Zee Telefilms and group head, access business for Zee, will be chairman. The JV will be managed by a team of Turner and Zee executives. Anshuman Misra will be managing director of the JV (and will continue to head up Turner), with Sunil Khanna as the CEO, Paresh Karia as the CFO and Siddharth Jain as the senior vice-president, distribution.

Zee group chairman Subhash Chandra expressed his happiness about the formation of the joint venture with Turner, a subsidiary of AOL Time Warner, the world’s largest media company and said: “This new joint venture is in keeping with Zee’s philosophy of associating with world class organisations to deliver better value to its customers and all other stakeholders. The joint venture leverages both partners’ respective brands and will enhance each party’s distribution strength. Zee will continue to explore other strategic co-operation and investment opportunities with AOL Time Warner.”

?This alliance, the first of its kind for Turner in Asia is a ground-breaking step for us in India. Partnering with Zee, India’s premier broadcast group, means that together we can offer an unparalleled blend of international and local channels to viewers,” said Steve Marcopoto, president & managing director of Turner Broadcasting System Asia Pacific Inc. “This new venture also underscores our commitment to investing and participating in the growth and future development of the country’s cable and satellite industry,” he said.

A number of initiatives in cross-promotions, programming and distribution arrangements are under consideration in line with the intent of the two companies to derive maximum value from this partnership.


Zee Telefilms, Turner Intl form distribution JV


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011214/efetop1.html

The board of directors of Zee Telefilms on Thursday approved the formation of a joint venture with Turner International (India) Private Ltd (a subsidiary of AOL Time Warner). Zee will hold 74 per cent stake in the new entity—Zee Turner Private Ltd—while Turner would hold the balance 26 per cent.

The new company will distribute a joint bouquet of 17 channels—14 from the Zee stable and 3 from the Turner stable—news channel CNN, movie channel HBO and Cartoon Network.

?We would also be open to distributing third party channels in India and South Asia, though we have not initiated talks with anyone so far,” Zee’s director and group head-access business, DP Naganand, said. He will be chairman of the new company. However, there was no word on whether Zee Turner would also be open to another equity partner. “That is a decision which will have to be taken by the board,” he said.

Mr Naganand clarified that advertising revenue would continue to be independently collected by the two partners. “We would be addressing the subscription market together. The complementary bouquet of 17 channels would give us the flexibility to design packages for specific regions,” he said.

Both partners expect the joint venture to yield a “healthy upside in revenue,” though they were unwilling to share specific numbers.

There was however no clarity on what this would mean for subscription rates. “We cannot say whether the subscription rates will go up, down or remain the same,” Mr Naganand said. The subscription rate for Zee’s bouquet is currently Rs 30 per subscriber per month while it is Rs 12.50 for Turner’s channels.

Zee Turner is likely to be incorporated in the next few weeks, after the regulatory approvals are in place. The company’s board will comprise three directors nominated by Zee and one by Turner International. Anshuman Misra, the managing director-south Asia for Turner International, will also hold the position of managing director in Zee Turner. Other initiatives on programming and distribution in other geographies would be explored in the near future, Mr Misra said.


(Craigs comment Turner channels should be added to the Zee mux on Asiasat 3. Adding HBO will make it attract the attention of the satellite piracy market. I am pretty sure the Viaccess encrypted Zee Mux has been hacked long ago.)


SCM Microsystems Helps Secure Chinese Digital TV Broadcasts


From Indiantelevision.com

Californian company SCM Microsystems, a leading provider of solutions for the Digital World, will collaborate with broadcast encryption provider Tsinghua Tongfang. The companies will develop and supply Conditional Access Modules (CAMs) based on the Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) which is the common Interface standard for the Chinese digital cable television market.

Tsinghua Tongfang sees the relationship as giving it a leg up over the local competitors and extend its reach beyond China. Tsinghua Tongfang was founded in 1997. It uses the talent and technological advantages of Tsinghua University by incubating vast multitudes of high-tech products in its R&D Center.

SCM realises that with over 270 million households, China represents the world's largest potential market for digital broadcasting and cable television. SCM Microsystems operates in the areas of Digital TV, Digital Video, PC Security and Digital Media Transfer. SCM's advanced silicon solutions, hardware and software enable secure exchange of electronic information for applications such as broadband content delivery by providing controlled access points to platforms such as PCs, digital cameras and digital television set-top boxes. SCM's Conditional Access Module provides individual provincial TV stations the option and flexibility to select the conditional access system they prefer, while ensuring compliance with China's central government's broadcast regulations. SCM modules will be part of Tsinghua Tongfang's conditional access encryption solution for digital broadcast services. Television operators throughout China will be able to use them. The module offer security from illegal copying or unauthorised access to broadcast content.

SCM 's hardware platform and software development kit will enable Tsinghua Tongfang to integrate its conditional access broadcast encryption system into a removable module. This will be compatible with any open set top box. Open set-top boxes secure broadcast signals through the conditional access module, which plugs easily into a standards based Common Interface slot.

Consumers can easily switch from one content provider to another using only exchange modules without having to go through the hassle of adding another set-top box.

Tsinghua Tongfang was selected by China's State Administration of Radio, Film and Television to be one of the suppliers of the official conditional access systems. These will be deployed in the forthcoming national digital cable TV network. Digital cable TV broadcasts will be initiated next year.

The new digital network will enable the delivery of more programs and value-added services between 30 provinces and major cities across China. The network envisages a subscriber subscriber base of 150 million by 2005 which will expand to 200 million by 2010.




14/12/01

Sorry just far to busy today with various things to do a site update. I will work on todays happenings later this evening that way I have a headstart on tommorows update. I have spent the afternoon trying to get the polarity switching working on the adl feed. I have never been able to switch H/V the powers getting to the switching motor but its making a rapid clicking noise. Please I need help with this one!




13/12/01

Good news a start date for Abc Asia Pacific, See the updated Satfacts page for details and also the news section, as expected they will use Pas 8 and run 2 services there. Christian Lyngmark told me of a P.R report from Eurostar at 45E ! reporting reception of this satellite from Perth on a 1.8M dish! I will do some followup work on this one!

South Africa vs Australia cricket tommorow, hopefully a feed of that somewhere FTA on satellite, its going live to India / Pakistan / South Africa / U.K and also probably the U.S so have a look around for it see if you can locate a feed.

A correction the freq mention yesterday for Canal+ was incorect the corect freq is 10975 and the settings the same as the other transponders. If they also upped the power levels is there anyone in NZ receiving improved signals?

Several satellite pages, and Gallerys have been updated also the History archive for October has been added


From my Emails & ICQ


From "Siam Global"

HEREWITH THE RESULTS OF THE SEARCHES YOU REQUESTED . THE TWO TELKOM PARAMETERS 3496H & 3986H ARE CHANNEL PACKED. THE FIRST HAS RCTI SCTV AND NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC ( THE SAME ONE AS ON APSTAR 2R ). THE SECOND HAS CNA TVRI MTV TV5. THE BAD NEWS HOWEVER IS THESE ARE TESTS AND ARE LIKELY TO DISAPPEAR AT ANY TIME. THE SECOND REQUESTED SEARCH WAS OF PALAPA 3880H. CAN CONFIRM A VERY STRONG SIGNAL IN BANGKOK OF ALL THESE TRANSPONDERS

SIAM GLOBAL,
BANGKOK


(Craigs comment, how about some reports from other locations? If they are planning a 37 channel service such as what they report on their website then these "tests" could be transponders they intend to use)


From Ravi Jabbal

Craig

Just a note for all cricket lovers.
a one hour live telecast is available for the India vs england test

Live on DD1 National between 9:30pm to 10:30 pm melbourne time
thought some of the cricket lovers may be interested

You may want to put this on apsattv site

Thanks
Ravi


From the Dish


Palapa C2 113E 3880 H "Anteve" has started on , Sid 4, Vpid 515 Apid 653.
Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "Anteve" has started on, Sid 4, Vpid 515 Apid 653.

Telkom 1 108E 3496 H "Telkomvision mux" Sr 19615 Fec 3/4
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H "Telkomvision mux" Sr 17800 Fec 3/4

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3799 H "APTN Asia" is FTA.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V The test cards are FTA.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3585 V "Star Vijay" is back on, Vpid 512 Apid 640, Asian beam.

Intelsat 804 64E 3669 R New SIDs and PIDs for the TV Africa mux 1-4 and 512/650-515/680.


NEWS


ABC Asia Pacific New Year launch


From ABC release posted at http://www.auspaytv.com/news/

On December 31 this year, while Australians at home are focused on the bells, whistles and fireworks of their New Year celebrations, a major new platform for the voice of Australia will be launched in the Asia Pacific region.

ABC Asia Pacific is a multi media service, integrating television, radio and new media. Radio Australia has established an outstanding reputation as an international service since it was established in 1939. Now the return of a reinvigorated television service, complemented and extended by its own online service will enhance the ABC's ability to provide an independent voice in the region and raise awareness of Australia's economic and trade capablities.

Initially the service will be in English. The program mix has an emphasis on news and information. Available research shows that viewers of English language networks prefer news, education and science, lifestyle, Western contemporary music and sporting programs.

Programmer for the ABC Asia Pacific Project team, Paddy Conroy says 'The program mix has an emphasis on news and information. However there will also be a strong natural history and lifestyle programming content with top quality Australian produced programs selected for their relevance to the varying audiences across the region. The service will be a showcase for various aspects of Australian cultural life from fine arts to drama.'

News and current affairs will comprise about thirty percent of programming on a weekday and around twenty percent on weekends.

Also in production is a daily education program in a current affairs format. Ian Wolfe the project team's News adviser, says 'Asia Pacific TV is aiming to provide its viewers across Asia and the Pacific with the very best news coverage of their region, coming from within that region.

'This coverage will initially be headed by three specifically commissioned programs being produced by ABC News and Current Affairs - a national news bulletin seven nights a week, an Asian and Pacific bulletin on week nights and a background program Asia Pacific Focus. The schedule of news-based programming will grow as the service does.

'Among other things the service will provide important new outlets for the ABC's Asian correspondents and the chance to give greater exposure to our expertise gained in covering the region for the past half century.

'It's a very exciting period, providing many new opportunities and enabling ABC News and Current Affairs to build its reputation further.

The service will be delivered by the PAS8 satellite which has a far wider reach than the satellite used by the ABC's previous international television service. It covers all of China and reaches as far north as Eastern Russia. Because it already carries significant international channels it is an attractive option for individuals and organisations with satellite dishes. The digital capacity of the satellite allows for multichannelling to overcome the problem of the varying time zones in the vast region.

Programming will initially screen in a four hour loop. A second channel will allow staggering of programs, so that one channel can start the loop of the scheduled program mix two hours later than the other. As direct-to-home viewing of satellite services is not universal except in Indonesia, the growth in audience reach of the television component of ABC Asia Pacific will depend to a large extent on re-broadcast arrangements via local TV networks, hotels and institutions.

The service is guaranteed an enthusiastic reception in the South Pacific where broadcasters took significant portions of the previous service. Contact is being made with major broadcasters across Asia. The leader of the ABC Asia Pacific project team, John Doherty is having discussions about re-broadcast arrangements with potential outlets in Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, Japan, Vietnam, Taiwan and Korea. 'We are of the firm belief,' John says, 'that our service will find a good, enduring audience. . There was a general appreciation of the regional news and regional current affairs formats producing news in the region, from the region, for the region. The English learning program, documentaries, lifestyle and drama were well received.'

The online service will include material complementing the television service, a news and current affairs service sourced from existing Radio Australia online news, a comprehensive directory service to Australian industrial, educational, tourist, government, cultural and business information and a question and answer service providing rapid turn-around answers to individual audience questions.

The Asia Pacific service has been made possible by five year funding from the Department of Foreign Affairs which specifically states that the service will remain independent of Government.


ABC prepares for a re-run in Asia


From http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,3414481%255E12280,00.html

WHEN the ABC won the right to operate Australia's latest satellite TV service to Asia and the Pacific in late June, it expressed the hope it would be on air "by the end of the year". It will make it – just.

The ABC Asia-Pacific service will switch on at 3pm or 7pm – it's yet to be decided – on Monday, December 31, and plans a year of crawl-before-you-walk development before it expects to be a serious player in the crowded satellite market.

John Doherty, the project manager at ABC, says the service will initially offer a four-hour program loop repeated and updated six times daily. By May, the program blocks are to be extended to six hours, before switching to eight hours by the end of next year, giving a more reasonable three-repeat cycle.

Initially, each day's cycle will begin at 3pm (AEDT), starting with a repeat of the ABC's World at Noon news program. This will be followed by an education program with an emphasis on learning English. The next three hours will be current affairs shows or documentaries from the ABC such as Four Corners, Landline or Australian Story and commercial infotainment programs such as Getaway or Good Medicine.

At 7pm, the second cycle will begin with a national news service prepared by a dedicated news team in Perth. This will be made up of the top stories of the day from Australia, plus international items with a regional impact. This half-hour service may be shown late at night domestically, as was the international bulletin of the old Australian TV International service. The education and docos from the previous four-hour block will then be repeated until 11pm. When the holiday season ends, a three-nights-a-week current affairs program featuring studio discussions on regional topics will be fitted into this block.

The national news gets a re-run at 11pm, and at midnight another specially created regional news service will be aired. This will focus on Asian news and issues, and is aimed at providing a regional relevance overlooked by the big international satellite broadcasters such as CNN, BBC World and MNBC. It is timed to go into markets such as Jakarta and Singapore in mid-evening time slots.

Weekends will feature a hefty dose of Australian sport, plus locally made dramas from the ABC and commercial channels.

Doherty says there is great interest among terrestrial broadcasters about program availability from the new direct-to-home satellite service, but decisions to buy are being delayed until the product is up and running. He is also aware of some ill-will directed at Australian satellite services because of past mistakes. The ABC sold off its ATVI service to the Seven network, which pulled the plug about a year ago to save money.

"It's a crowded market out there, and we will have to prove ourselves," Doherty says. "But we're on track and confident."

Let's hope he's right. We, the taxpayers, are funding this experiment to the tune of $90 million over five years.


Vinasat launch in 2004?


From [sat-index] 12 Dec 2001

One of the satellite projects that have been under discussion
for quite a while is Vietnam's Vinasat. The launch date has
meanwhile slipped to 2004 while the project costs have risen.

Vietnam Post and Telecommunications Corporation (VNPT) in 2000
said it was seeking investment partners for Vinasat, worth
US$300 million. The launch date was at that time given as 2002.

A latest report by Agence France Press now quotes US$500
million as total cost for the geostationary communications
satellite, which should have a design life of 12 to 15 years.

Vinasat is reportedly expected to save at least US$10 million
that Vietnam currently pays foreign satellite operators to relay
state radio and television. But this would save only a total of
US$150 million, wouldn't it?

It's also uncertain whether the Vietnamese officials quoted by
AFP are familiar with today's satellite launch market.

"As far as the launch vehicle goes, we are still considering
the possibility of using a Russian rocket," project evaluation
deputy director Cao Van Ban said. "But we must wait and see if
it's really suitable because the weak point of Russian products
is they can be cumbersome and old-fashioned."

Officials were instead said to be seriously considering the U.
S. space shuttle as launch vehicle. Just a reminder: after the
Challenger explosion in 1987, the United States imposed a
permanent decision that the shuttle would not be used to launch
commercial payloads.


SET to enter Pakistan by month-end


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011213/efetop3.html

After Star and Zee TV, it is the turn of Sony Entertainment Television to enter Pakistan. The Hindi entertainment channel will start operations in the neighbouring country by the end of this month.

?We are launching Sony Entertainment Television by December-end,” said Mr Shantonu Aditya, senior vice president, franchise channels and distribution, SET India Ltd.

Sony is entering Pakistan through Lahore-based Leo Communications. The company will be paid a minimum guaranteed amount by Leo Communications. Besides, there is also a revenue sharing arrangement.

?We are establishing our base first. There are 6,000 headends in Pakistan and eight million cable and satellite homes. But it is a growing market. There is scope of doing big business in the coming months,” said Mr Aditya.

Sony is also planning to enter Philippines and Indonesia in the next two months. A launch in Fiji is also planned. The channel was recently launched in Bangladesh and Maldives.

Sony has entered into Bangladesh through Nationwide Communications. AXN, the action channel from Sony Pictures which forms part of the SET India bouquet for pay-TV in India, already had a presence in Bangladesh before Sony TV was launched in that country.

In the Middle East, Sony is on the Show Time bouquet in the direct-to-home (DTH) platform while the cable network is e Vision. It is an important market for Sony. “The Asian region is growing rapidly. The Middle East is also a good market. We have 125,000 DTH subscribers in that region,” said Mr Aditya.

In Australia, Sony has 30,000 subscribers in a year’s time. For the UK market, the channel is packaged and priced alongwith B4U. The combination with B4U Movies has helped Sony Entertainment Television to grow its subscriber base in the UK,” Mr Aditya said. For the European market also, Sony has aligned with B4U to offer a packaged pricing.


(Craigs comment, 30000 subscribers in Australia? Hmm does anyone believe that figure?, including NZ subscribers? this is of course for the Zee / Sony service on Optus B3)


Indian TV tie-up could bring AOL to Zee


From http://www.rediff.com/money/2001/dec/12zee.htm

Zee Telefilms Ltd's plan to form a joint venture with AOL Time Warner's Indian unit to distribute each other's channels in India could be a prelude to AOL taking a stake in Zee, analysts said.

Directors of Zee, India's largest private television network, are meeting on Thursday to approve a possible joint venture with Turner International India.

The move comes amid long-running speculation that Zee, which has said it wants to sell a stake to an international partner, is close to choosing AOL as an investor.

Talk of the stake sale, which would enhance Zee's content and global reach, has lifted Zee's share price 47 per cent in the past month. The shares were down 2.8 per cent on Wednesday afternoon, despite a 0.3 per cent rise in the main stock index.

Zee has confirmed that AOL is among the companies it is talking to for the stake sale, according to newspaper reports.

"They are in talks, their plans for a distribution joint venture means they have a relationship and they could very well be heading for something bigger," said an analyst with a foreign brokerage, who did not want to be named.

Other potential investors mentioned in media reports were France's Vivendi Universal and Viacom of the United States.

AOL chairman Steve Chase last week mentioned China and India when he said the company will look to buy businesses abroad to spur growth.

Zee operates 14 channels in India, a mixture of general entertainment, movies, news, music and regional language offerings. Turner International operates three -- news network CNN, English movie channel HBO and Cartoon Network.

Zee already has a content sharing agreement with CNN for its Zee News channel.

PLUS POINTS FOR AOL

Analysts said combining distribution would be of greater advantage to AOL than to Zee, though it could improve Zee's content offering on the margin.

Combining popular channels gives broadcasters greater clout in securing distribution deals with cable operators in India's hugely fragmented cable industry, which reaches about 35 million homes.

"Turner currently reaches out to only some nine million viewers (in India) compared to over 200 million that Zee reaches," said Subhabrata Majumder of Inquire Indian Equity Research. "So a joint distribution with Zee will naturally mean a stronger platform for AOL in India."

Cartoon Network, which airs English cartoons mostly dubbed in Hindi, is likely to be the most valuable addition to Zee's bouquet, analysts said.

"There are definitely areas of overlap in this arrangement because Zee already has an English movie channel -- Zee MGM -- in a tie-up with Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer and also a content sharing arrangement with CNN for its Zee News channel," Majumder said.

Analysts do not see much financial gain from the venture for Zee.

"It is not as though Zee can dramatically increase subscription charges for its bouquets after this," said another analyst with a domestic brokerage.

Zee has been trying to increase subscription rates to offset pressure on advertising revenues, making its flagship general entertainment Zee TV channel a pay channel in June.

Another analyst said a deal with AOL will eliminate a threat from Zee's rival Sony Entertainment Television India, which has also reportedly been in talks to combine distribution with AOL in India.

Zee has been fighting hard in recent months to regain the most popular broadcaster position it held for eight years before losing it to Rupert Murdoch's Star TV last year.




12/12/01

The picture on Thai Tv5 on Mediasat seems to have had a dramatic improvement maybe they are feeding it off Tarbs Pas 8 transponder? Nothing happening with Mou tv2 yet. Anyway finally some good weather today so I have been at the beach getting sunburnt. There was some activity last night with the Canal+ mux on I701 with stuff moving around and a new transponder starting. There has also been activity on Telkom 1, 2 new transponders and the word is they are a repeat of the pay Telkomvision mux. Their site does say the satellite service will have 37 channels. Has anyone worked out what encryption format they are using.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Salah Romane

Dear Craig .

RFO Sat and Tele New Caledonia which were FTA and TV5 Asia on Intel 701 180 E are gone from Csat BQ Nouvelle Caledonie.

New channels are:

Transp Freq 11610 H sr 3000 Fec 3/4.


VPID APID
Cine Cinemas 160 80
TCM 161 84
RTL9 163 92
Planetes 164 96
Disney Ch 165 100
Voyage 167 108
Euronews 170 120
Eurosport 171 124
Action 2047 0 ( What Kind of Ch is it ? )
Nat Geographic 2047 0
TF6 2047 0 This one might be Commercial Channel 1 in France?
Unnamed 2047 0
Csat Promo 179 156
M6 179 156

and Europe 1 which is National Commercial Radio in France.

I suppose we have to wait and see for the next few days what's going on. I contacted the people in RFO sat and Csat+ and I am waiting for some clues from Paris.

Also power is up .

Regards
Salah.


(Craigs comment yes there were changes here, try loading new freq 10945 to bring up the missing chs)


From David Pemberton

Subject: New pids for APTN on ASIASAT 2.

There are new pids for APTN on ASIASAT 2 3799H.
Video is 200,Audio is 280,PCR is 8190.

It does not seem to be in NDS now.It has been FTA the last few days, however today the pids have changed and the loading now says APTN GVW.It no longer says it is in NDS or encrypted.


Best regards,
DAVID PEMBERTON.


From Harbhajan Singh

Dear Mr Craig,

I have been a great fan of yours for sometime now.
Keep up the good work you are doing.

I had a small enquiry to make, i am located in Kenya,
East Africa, is there any way i can recieve STAR PLUS
via satellite considering my location and if it is
available via satellite FTA or is it Pay? I saw this
STAR PLUS channel running on Cable netwroks in India.

Any help will be highly appreciated,

Harbhajan


(Craigs reply, Star Plus is a pay channel that runs in India it comes off Asiasat 3, I don't think the footprint of this satellite covers Kenya. You can probably get similar programming off the South African Multichoice service on Panamsat 10)


From the Dish


Pas 2 169E 12300 H "Vtv 4 Vietnam" Sr 3650 (unconfirmed)

Optus B3 156E 12336 V "The occcasional feeds have left , PIDs 1360/1320.

JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V Several changes in the C Sky Net mux. (There are 3 fta channels here anyone had a look at them?).

Palapa C2 113E 3880 H According to emails they have upped the power on this transponder? does anyony have a report of improved reception?

Telkom 1 108E 3496 H activity here? Sr 19615 Fec 3/4
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H activity here? Sr 17800 Fec 3/4



NEWS


APT orders Apstar VB from Alcatel Space


From [sat-index] 11 Dec 2001

APT Satellite Holdings Ltd, Hong Kong, said its wholly-owned
unit APT Satellite Co Ltd had entered into an agreement to buy a
satellite and related services from Alcatel Space, France, in a
deal worth EUR131 million (US$118 million).

Alcatel Space will provide APT Satellite with the design,
construction, testing and delivery of Apstar VB. The price
includes servicing costs of the launch campaign, on site support,
training as well as costs of satellite simulator, satellite
control centre and baseband equipment. The delivery and launch
of Apstar VB is scheduled for July 2004.

APT Satellite said the spacecraft would be a backup satellite
for Apstar V, yet the matter is a bit more complicated. APT had
ordered Apstar V from Space Systems/Loral, USA, in January 2001.
The spacecraft was to be launched on a Chinese Chang Zheng
rocket in February 2003 in order to replace Apstar I at 138
degrees East. Apstar 1 is due to retire in mid-2004.

However, the U.S. government hasn't granted export licenses
for a few satellites, among them Apstar V. SS/L has missed two
contractual deadlines for obtaining the export license. In
August 2001, news reports suggested that pending licenses for
satellite exports to China were likely to be delayed
indefinitely by the U.S. administration.

APT is still interested in Apstar V. In case the satellite can
be delivered by SS/L as planned, Apstar VB would be reconfigured
and launched as Apstar VI. It would then replace Apstar IA,
currently expected to stay operational until 2006.

The contract sum suggests of U$118 million that Apstar VB is
not a full replacement for Apstar V, which was to cost a total
of US$230 million (including launch and insurance) when the
contract was announced.

A launch vehicle for Apstar VB was not announced, but so far
all Apstar satellites have flown on Chinese Chang Zheng rockets.


(Craigs comment coverage of the new Apstar is supposed to include Australia and NZ)


Zee, Turner joint venture on the anvil


From http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/articleshow.asp?art_id=1380525807

NEW DELHI: It is official now. The board of Zee Telefilms will meet on Thursday to consider a joint venture with Turner International, a group company of AOL-Time Warner.

A senior Zee executive told Times News Network that the matter would be put up before the board that would decide on future course of action.

The proposed joint venture with Turner International India Private Limited is to market and distribute channels of Zee, Turner and third parties. Zee has 15 channels in its bouquet. Turner India manages three channels, namely, CNN, HBO and Cartoon Network.

Media industry has been abuzz about Zee's impending tie-up with the AOL-Time Warner. Zee scrips are currently being traded at around Rs 143, up from a low of Rs 68 in July.

Speculation about Zee's impending placement gained further momentum earlier this month as senior AOL-Time Warner executives were in town as part of US-India trade initiative. AOL Time Warner officials, however, refused to comment on the proposed tie-up.

AOL-Time Warner had earlier this year expressed interest in entering the Indian market both in media and internet space.

Media analysts note that the success of international players, such as, NewsCorp and Sony, has made it imperative for AOL-Time Warner to enter the Indian cable and satellite market at the earliest possible, which is currently 35 million household strong.

Explaining AOL's reported interest in Zee, a Mumbai-based media analyst said, "Given the high entry barriers in the form of pay market not being well-developed and distribution being largely unregulated, it is important for a new player to look out for partners."

Zee has a country-wide distribution arm in the form of Siticable. Turner International have penetration in English-speaking households, especially in South. "Zee would complement AOL-Time Warner well in the Hindi belt and western India," said a senior executive from a rival channel.

The impending joint venture between Zee and Turner would also explain the recent placement advertisement in a leading daily that talked about a business house seeking television professionals. Though senior Zee executives have denied that the group is behind the advertisement, the requirements as specified in the advertisement meet the business needs of the company, analysts point out.




11/12/01

Live satellite chat in the chatroom the usual time tonight 8.30pm Syd time and 9pm NZ onwards.

Good news for Nokia users the very latest version of the "DVB Universal" software supports adding your own satellites! we have been waiting for this for a long time, I even supplied a list of satellites with Frequencys to them months back. They have decided to support it via "Airbornes" fantastic software, SCSI is not needed for a large amount of features that the software supports. By adding your own local satellites in the search menu you should be able completely scan a satellite for feeds / new services etc WITHOUT needing to hook up to a pc. I have not had time yet to try it out. Anyone who has created there own local satellites files for use with the software is welcome to email them to me and I will put it up on the site for downloading. Link below for Universal scssi latest version , and the best collection of Nokia software.

http://www.no-access.de/en/en_software_multifunctional.html

Some changes reported with Mediasat

The feeds channel on Sid 3 Vpid 1360 Apid 1320 has gone
Mou 2 is new on Sid 8 Vpid 768 Apid 769, no service here yet are we getting 2 channels of Maharishi for Christmas?
Also the resolution for TRT Turkey has been halved, perhaps to fit in more, channels.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Chris Pickstock

Changes on Mediasat

11.30 pm SA time.
B3, 12336 v has seen some changes.

MOUTV-2 now loads, Vpid 768, Apid 769, but I get no picture, just a message saying bad signal.
The MSAT Occasional at Vpid 1320 has now gone.

I suppose there could be more changes by morning. Keep checking.
Chris

PS. Just what we need, more Maharishi


An email from Satlink about their new service on Asiasat 2

Dear Craig,


sorry it took a while to reply but I hope you accept my apology!
To answer your question as far as I can:

Basically Satlink launched a 18 Mhz MCPC platform in order to distribute 4 -
5 TV Channels from Europe and the Middle East to Japan, Asia and Australia.
These 4 -5 channels will be encrypted and not be free to air. These channels
will be provided by contract to Cable or Satellite operators in the various
regions to be inserted into their packages.

The names of the Channels will be announced in the future, once the
contracts are signed.


I hope the above information is helpful
Wishing you all the best

Petra Yaacobi
Marketing & Sales Manager
Tel:
GSM:
e-mail: petra@satlink-com.com

URL: http://www.satlink-com.com


(Craigs comment, some cards are up on 3709 V this could be the above service, also note they are using the Viaccess encryption format.)

From the Dish


Pas 2 169E 3768 V "Testcard" Sr 6620 Fec 3/4 vpid 1110 apid 1211 0915 utc

Optus B3 156E 12336 V The Msat 1 feeds channel has left, Sid 3 Vpid 1360 Apid 1320
Optus B3 156E 12336 V "Mou 2" is new on , Sid 8 Vpid 768 Apid 769 ( no service here yet)
Optus B3 156E 12336 V "TRT Turkey" has halved picture resolution

Optus B3 156E 12720 V "ABC Radio Victoria" has started on , Apid 777.
Optus B3 156E Tune Info has left 12595 V, moved to 12407 V.

Palapa C2 113E 3880 H "Anteve" has left, replaced by a test card

Telkom 1 108E 3460 H All channels in the TelkomVision mux are now encrypted.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3709 V "Two test cards have started" , Sr 13021, Fec 3/4, PIDs 257/258 and 513/514. (This looks like the new Satlink service)

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V The two test cards are now encrypted.

Measat 1 91.5E Updates in Astro:BBC World and Al-Jazeera Satellite Channel Malaysia have started on ch 909.
TVB 8, TVB Xing He Channel, Discovery Travel & Adventure, Tech TV, AXN and
ART Australia have started regular transmissions on ch 910-915.


NEWS


TVNZ to cut $75m in costs

From http://onebusiness.nzoom.com/business_detail/0,1245,70626-3-13,00.html

Television New Zealand is looking to cut $75 million in costs before the end of the 2003-2004 financial year.

Parliament’s Finance and Expenditure Committee report says TVNZ has already identified $15 million in savings for this financial year from revenue and cost savings initiatives, but it is targeting savings of $20 million next year and $40 million the year after.

The committee reports TVNZ says this is to “ensure the television business breaks even, both in trading and cash flow”.

The committee’s report says the commercial value of TVNZ, which is about to become a Crown Owned Company, has dropped and may drop further following the introduction of a charter determining its responsibility as a public broadcaster from July 2002.

In 1998, TVNZ was independently valued at $970 million.

A valuation in January this year by the Crown Company Monitoring Unit (CCMAU) and Arthur Andersen estimated it to be $565 million.

The select committee report says the big drop is largely related to the non-inclusion of nzoom.com and TVNZ International and the fact the valuation was largely focused on the implications of separating Broadcast Communications Ltd (BCL) from the TVNZ Group.

TVNZ’s Statement of Corporate Intent this year values the group at $748 million. The committee reports says the difference in this valuation and the 1998 figure relates to the divestment of TVNZ’s interests in Sky TV and Clear Communications and a decrease in the forecast profitability of television advertising.

But the report notes the value may decrease further depending on what happens when the new charter is introduced:

?TVNZ will have to give effect to its new charter while trying to maintain its ‘commercial performance’. However, ‘commercial performance’ has not yet been defined and may require lower profitability levels, leading to a corresponding reduction in the commercial value of the television business.”

TVNZ told the committee a soft advertising market had reduced net profit – to $3.7 million in the year to June 30, from $16.9 million the previous year.

Advertising revenue reduced 3.7% (or $11.1 million) to $284.7 million.

That is in line with worldwide trends, the report says, and TV advertising in NZ was down 6.3%.

TVNZ is due to pay the government as its shareholder a $21 million dividend.

The finance and select committee reveals Treasury is examining the dividend policy regarding TVNZ in the New Year.

The report speculates that if TVNZ was to retain the $21 million, it could be used to produce 168 hours of documentaries and 35 hours of drama.




10/12/01

Not much activity today, more U.K football on overnight on 701. The WWF Event did not show up on 701.I moved to Pas 2 couldn't find it there. Dropped the dish to Asiasat 2 to do some adjusting managed to lose the ability to change pols, which I have had problems with all the time. Have moved the dish back to 701 and will take another look at things tommorow.


From the Dish


PAS 2 169E 4026 V New/correct SR for the Era Bouquet is : 22000.

PAS 8 166E 12564 H FEC for Ihug is : 7/8.

Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "TVRI and Anteve" have left, replaced by test cards.

Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "Channel NewsAsia, Indosiar, TPI and Bloomberg TV Asia" have started on, PIDs 80/81, 144/145, 208/209 and 656/657.New SR: 28000.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3786 H The occasional feeds have left

Measat 1 91.5E Tech TV has left Astro ch 903.

Apstar 2R 76.5E 3796 V "DD North-East" is back on , Sr 2500, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 4100
Apstar 2R 76.5E 3848 H "UTV tests"


NEWS


Singtel, Optus Create 3 Int'l Business Units to Boost Efficiency


From satnewsasia.com

Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) and its Australian subsidiary, Optus, have merged their respective International Carrier Services, International Network and International Satellite businesses for “greater efficiency and improved customer service.”

Three new International Business Units (IBUs) were organized to handle these businesses and will be responsible for the SingTel group's global operations. Lim Toon, SingTel’s chief operating officer, said integration would make SingTel and Optus stronger together rather than operating as two separate organizations. He said efforts to extract operational synergies were ongoing.

,reating the new IBUs is part of our effort to drive the combined strengths of the companies and reap the synergies of merger," said Lim.

According to Lim, the formal integration process began as soon as SingTel's acquisition of Optus was completed. SingTel acquired Optus, Australia’s second largest telco and a satellite operator, for US$9 billion this September after five months of often contentious debate focused on the threat to Australia’s national security by SingTel.

"Bringing the international carrier and networks businesses of SingTel and Optus together consolidates the group's buying power, magnitude and scope,” Lim added. SingTel estimates cash savings of some US$163 million can be achieved over the next 18 months by the integration.

SingTel projects that about 80 percent of the integration savings will come from a cut in capital expenditure, mainly by optimizing the group's international cable networks and better prices from equipment vendors. Most of the savings will be realized in the next financial year.

Under the new set up, the new International Carrier Services and International Network IBUs will manage the assets of SingTel and Optus in a streamlined, global and regional operation consisting of cable, switch and other wholesale data businesses.

The International Carrier Services IBU will manage all international voice and data traffic, taking advantage of the SingTel group's carrier relations, negotiating rates for terminating traffic and providing wholesale voice/data and other value-added services through the Group's global voice multi-service network.

The International Network IBU will plan the group's requirements for international network and utilization, manage the costs of submarine cable, satellite and backhaul facilities, and coordinate the private submarine cable businesses.

The International Satellite Business IBU will operate and manage five satellites covering Asia, Australia and New Zealand, 13 satellite earth stations, three tracking, telemetry and control facilities, and the agreements that allow access to 25 other satellites.

Heading the International Carrier Services IBU is Richard Tan, who is the vice president of SingTel International Carrier Services. New Century Infocomm Company chief operating officer Ng Seng Sun will lead the International Network IBU. New Century is a SingTel associate. The two executives will report to SingTel executive vice president Lim Shyong. Optus Satellite general manager Bob Murray will head the Satellite Business IBU and will report to Chris Hancock, managing director of Optus Business Division.


7 Zee channels to be uplinked from Noida


From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe20011210/news6.html

Mumbai, Dec 9: Zee Telefilms has finally obtained government permission to uplink seven of its channels directly from the country, enabling it to tap local advertisers and save yearly $2-3 million through direct operational efficiencies. The mainline channels like Zee TV and Zee Cinema, however, are outside this facility and will continue to be uplinked from Singapore. The uplinking permission was received for Zee News, the four Alpha language channels, Zee Music and Zed TV.

The uplinking will be done through the Essel Shyam Teleport located at Noida near New Delhi. Zee could not qualify to obtain an uplinking permission because of a restrictive clause which does not allow companies with foreign equity participation beyond 49 per cent to uplink directly from the country. The holding of Subhash Chandra, who is an NRI, goes beyond the cap.

The seven channels will start uplinking from the Noida facility within the next few weeks. “The teleport facility is ready. Only the switch-over will take some time. We will have dual illumination for technical glitches and be totally ready in the next few weeks,” said group CEO, Zee Telefilms, Sandeep Goyal.

Besides reaching out to untapped streams of local advertising, the uplinking from the country will help Zee News and the Alpha channels to beam news in real time. The preparation for an increase in news bulletins on the Alpha channels has already started. While Alpha Marathi and Gujarati will telecast six news bulletins in January, Alpha Bangla will make it in February.

?Zee News will have a significant competitive advantage as uplinking from Singapore causes a time lag. The channel has recently deployed 3-D virtual sets for the first time in the country and also strengthened its VSAT feeder system,” said Mr Goyal.

The Alpha channels can also migrate from the language to community channels.


I&B allows Zee Tele to uplink from India


From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow.asp?art_id=1840021878

EE TELEFILMS has been given permission to uplink seven of its satellite channels from Indian soil by the information and broadcasting ministry. This effectively means that the company has been recognised as an ‘Indian broadcaster’ under I&B regulations.

The seven channels for which permission had been sought for uplinking from India are the four ‘Alpha’ regional language channels: Zee News, Zee Music and Zed TV. These channels will be uplinked from the Essel Shyam Teleport, an earth station facility promoted by Zee chairman Subhash Chandra and located in Noida.

The teleport has been fully functional for over a year now, but the I&B ministry had been holding back permission as it regarded Zee Telefilms as a ‘foreign broadcaster’ under the uplinking rules framed two years ago.

Under these rules, Indian private broadcasters—in which the Indian holding accounted for at least 80 per cent of the total equity—were permitted to use uplinking facilities from India.

In the case of Zee, the stumbling block, it is understood, was the chief promoter, Subhash Chandra’s shareholding. Being an NRI, the I&B is believed to have considered his holding as ‘foreign’.

Confirming the development, ZTL CEO Sandeep Goyal, however, said he didn’t know whether the ministry had revised its definitions, if at all. He, however, clarified that the company’s shareholding had not undergone any major changes to justify fitting into the old I&B standards of an ‘Indian’ broadcaster.

The company expects to save up to $3m through operational efficiency, Goyal said. The company also now hopes that it will be able to tap into an entirely new market of advertisers, which foreign broadcasters cannot access.


Insat 3C Transported to Kourou For January Launch


From www.satnewsasia.com

The Indian satellite Insat 3C has arrived at Kourou, French Guyana for its launch on January 6, 2002.

Insat 3C is scheduled for launch on board an Ariane 4 launch vehicle. Insat 3C carries 24 C-band transponders, six extended C-band transponders, two S-band broadcast satellite service transponders and mobile satellite service transponders. It will be positioned at 74 degrees East and will replace Insat 2C, which will reach the end of its seven-year useful life in March 2002.

The 1,170-kg Insat 3C was to have been launched by an Ariane 5. The launch was postponed after Ariane's previous flight failed to deliver its two-satellite payload into proper orbit due to an upper stage malfunction. The design of Ariane 5's upper stage was modified following the incident.

With a weight of 1,170 kg, Insat 3C will provide fixed satellite services (FSS) in the normal and extended C-bands, and broadcast satellite services and mobile satellite services in the S-band. Insat 3C will carry 36 transponders for VSAT (very small aperture terminals) and broadcast services throughout India. Of the transponders, 24 are in normal C-band and 12 in extended C-band. Insat 3C will replace India's current workhorse, Insat 2C, whose capacity will be transferred to the new satellite.

Insat 3B, the first satellite in the third generation Insat 3 series built by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), was successfully launched last March by the Ariane 505 vehicle. ISRO is the Indian equivalent of America’s National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA).

Insat 3C is now positioned in the integration facilities at Kourou. Ground checkout equipment will be installed in the coming days and various tests carried out.


Singapore To Build First Satellite


From satnewsasia.com

Singapore expects to launch the first Singapore-designed and built satellite in six years’ time.

Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and DSO National Laboratories are partnering to build a micro-satellite called “X-Sat.” NTU and DSO representatives have signed a memorandum of understanding that calls for the launch of the satellite by 2007. They will also jointly develop micro-satellites and carry out research and development in satellite engineering.

Weighing just 120 kilograms, X-Sat will be an earth resources satellite orbiting every 90 minutes. It will cost over US$10 million to design and build X-Sat. If successful, X-Sat might be used commercially and its data and pictures put on sale,

In 1999, NTU scientists built the communications payload of the UoSAT-12 satellite launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan that same year, giving NTU the distinction of being the first educational institute in Singapore to orbit a satellite. Nano-satellites usually weigh under 10kg while micro-satellites weigh about 10 times more.

DSO chief Quek Tong Boon said X-Sat will enable the new Center for Research in Satellite Technologies (Crest) to enhance its ability to develop a complete satellite and put it into orbit. “The experience gained will give us the confidence to better define the specifications and successors to X-Sat,” said Quek.

Just last October, China and Iran signed an agreement to design and build "Small Multi-Mission Spacecraft (SMMS)" that can be used for remote sensing, telecommunications and also military reconnaissance.

The first SMMS, weighing 470kg, is set for launch on a Chinese booster in 2004 or 2005. This SMMS will carry a low-resolution charge-coupled device (CCD) camera and an experimental telecommunications system. This mission will be totally devoted to civilian remote-sensing and communications experiments.

Iranian engineers and scientists are involved in the CCD camera development and were in Beijing in mid-September to review the project. The SMMS spacecraft bus is envisioned as a standardized design that can be used in the future for other China or Asia-Pacific cooperative imaging or science missions.




9/12/01

As you can see below I found a feed of live U.K soccer in the early hours of this morning. There should be more early Monday morning. Monday around 1 p.m NZ? there may be a WWF event on 701. There is cricket on today West Indies vs Zimbabwe a tournament over in Sri Lanka. Let me know if you locate a feed from this tournament. I tryed looking for it yesterday but the whole match was over in 1 hour!!! Zim all out for 38! and Sri Lanka 40/1 off 4 overs.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Me

I701 180E 1.55 a.m Syd 3769 RHC "channel 1" Live UK Soccer, Man vs Westham
I701 180E 1.55 a.m Syd 3769 RHC "channel 2" Live UK Soccer, Liverpool vs Middlesborugh


From Victor Holubecki

APTN is currently FTA on Asiasat2.


From George (Thailand)

Hey Apsattv'ers

Some updates from my neck of the woods.
From north-eastern Thailand using a Hyundai 710-A

To correct a few errors and make clear a few others:

PAS 2

-TVB mux has left 4044V and moved to 4026V
-BBC World on 3744 V signal power has lowered (maybe moving to PAS 8?)

Palapa C2

-3880 H a mux of 4 channels Global TV, Metro TV, TVRI Colour Bars, ANTV
Colour Bars (not ANTEVE) they are to different channels
-4000 H a mux of 6 Channels Channel News Asia, ch2 (Channel News Asia),
these are colour bars ch3, ch4, ch5, ch6

P.S. Craig and the signal strength is the strongest I can recieve on Palapa C2 3880 H is active!

Telkom 1

-the Telkom Vision mux has encrypted on 3460 H (Confirmed SR has changed to 28000)
-Trans TV has left?
-Turbo TV transponder still active 3620 H SR 20000

Apstar 2R

- DD North-East has left

PAS 10

-the Maharishi mux cannot be recieved up here has it left? 3932 V SR 20000
-BBC World India and BBC World Service on 3776 V SR 19850

George
THAILAND


From Me 8/12/01

6.20pm syd time

B1, 12358 V Sr 6110 fec 3/4 Vpid 308 Apid 256 "fox sports Basketball"


From Bill Richards 8/12/01

0835 utc

Pas 2 3961 V "(Fox 9mhz) sports feed swimming", Sr 6620, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256

Some great screenshots of TVB mux on Pas 2




From the Dish


Telkom 1 108E "Telkomvision mux" Sr has changed to 28000 (confirmed) service is encrypted, format unknown as yet


NEWS


ARY Digital hopes to grab eyeballs with Urdu version of KBC


From Indiantelevision.com

And now get ready for an Urdu version of KBC.

ARY Digital, which is all set for a mid-January 2002 launch, has secured the Urdu rights for the game show from Celador. ARY Digital was all set for a post Diwali launch in the Middle East, India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, but has been postponed due to delays in shifting from PAS 10 to Thaicom 3. The shift has been necessitated to cut down on time lags in transmission, says Live Satellite Media director Atul Saraf, who is distributing and marketing the channel in India.

Saraf expects the channel to reach nearly 20 million homes in the next five months. Currently a 24 hour free to air digital channel, ARY Digital is planning to go pay by April 2002. Positioned as a family entertainment channel, Saraf expects to do better than other Urdu channels that met a sad end in the region, armed as it is with a plethora of cross border soaps and Bollywood based shows. Its only competitor in the region, ETV Urdu, was launched in June this year, but Saraf says ARY Digital will counter the competition with 'better quality programming'. The channel, which will have 10 hours of original programming, has already commissioned four serials in the suspense and family genres and is building up a library of Pakistani movies. Most soaps will be shot in London, Dubai and Turkey and should appeal to a pan Asian audience, says Saraf. Seventy per cent of the programming mix is to sourced from Pakistan and the rest from India.

The Urdu KBC will stay true to the 'Who wants to be a millionaire?' format, but the finer details are yet to be worked out, says Saraf. The show will rope in a well known Pakistani actor to anchor the show, and is likely to go on air by mid 2002, he adds. The Urdu version will be the third from the subcontinent to launch a 'millionaire' style game show. Koteeswaran, the Tamil version, went on air in November 2000 on the Sun TV network, at a time when Star and 'Who wants to be a millionaire?' rights owner Celador were threatening to launch regional versions for Indian language channels.

ARY Digital is a television network owned by ARY, one of the largest gold manufacturers in the world, based in London. The channel was launched in August 2001. The network was formerly known as The Pakistani Channel; its name was changed when it was bought over by the ARY Group.




8/12/01

My dish is still on 701 at 180E, caught WWF Livewire at about 1 P.M NZT, have started adding things into a diary and eventually I should have sort of schedule for 701 feeds. I did manage to get RFO as well RFO 2 and 3 were very active with feeds of French programming in the early hours of Friday morning.

Confusion over Telkom 1 at 108E and AAP1, some are reporting AAP1 is at 108E Lyngsat lists it at 108.2E, AAP1 is KU only.



From my Emails & ICQ


From Sungadi 8/12/01

This mux is from Telekomvision (http://www.telekomvison.co.id or .com) a new cable operator in Jakarta. They are still in trial and soon will be encrypted.

Adi


From "Siamglobal"

Trust it did not escape the notice of readers that not only did the parameters of the Telkom bouquet change last week but the English language channels were removed also ! No more CNBC , no BBC World and no Bloomberg. So now of little interest to non Indonesians. Disappointing !

SiamGlobal Bangkok


From Andrew Harrison 7/12/01

Re: TelkomVision mux

1.Metro Tv 60/61
2.Fashion TV 272/273
3.Anteve 336/337
4.SCTV 400/401
5.RCTI 464/465
6.TVRI 33/36
7.MTV Asia 49/69
8.TV5 Asie 65/68

One less channel now.
Regards,
Andrew Harrison


(Craigs comment, at last report this had left, others report SR has changed to 28000, unconfirmed report of this mux also on AAP1 at 108.2E 12730 V Sr 28125 fec unknown)


From the Dish


PAS 2 169E 4044 V "TVBS Asia and TVBS Newsnet" have left, moved to 4026 V.

PAS 2 169E 4026 V An Era Bouquet has started on , Sr 22222, Fec 3/4,
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS", Sid 101 Vpid 160 Apid 80
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS Newsnet", Sid 102 Vpid 161 Apid 84
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS Golden", Sid 103 Vpid 162 Apid 88
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "Much TV", Sid 104 Vpid 163 Apid 92
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "ERA News", Sid 105 Vpid 164 Apid 96
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS Asia "(enc), Sid 106 Vpid 165 Apid 100
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "TVBS Newsnet USA", Sid 107 Vpid 166 Apid 104
PAS 2 169E 4026 V "Asia Plus" (enc.)", Sid 108 Vpid 167 Apid 108

JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V "ETTV International" has replaced "ETTV News",SID 400, Vpid 1040 Apid 1041.

Palapa C2 113E 3880 H "Anteve" is now encrypted.
Palapa C2 113E 3880 H "TVRI test card" on Vpid 514 Apid 652.

(Craigs comment, I get no sign of the above transponder is it very low power?)

ST 1 88E 3632 V "Savoir Knowledge Channel" has replaced "CountryMusic Pacific Rim" on, Vpid 33 Apid 34. New PIDs for all channels.

Apstar 2R 76.5E 3848 H "UTV" has started on, Sid 500, Vpid 510 Apid 511.
Apstar 2R 76.5E 3796 V "DD North-East" has left.


NEWS


Another Lankan channel, TV Lanka makes its debut


From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k1/dec/dec17.htm

TV Lanka, a worldwide digital satellite television channel has made its debut on the LMI1 satellite.

The state of the art 24-hour channel is being promoted by Electroteks, a global satellite communication network. It will be one of the first worldwide digital satellite TV channels operating from the region, media reports say.

The Sri Lankan media also say that the network will operate two full time digital video and six audio/music channels to run cultural and entertainment programmes in addition to news. TV Lanka, reports say, will be used to boost the Sri Lankan image worldwide and could be a catalyst to promote Sri Lanka in the SAARC countries. It is projected as a free to air channel for Sri Lankan expatriates in Europe, the Middle East and the Far East.

TV Lanka, the reports say, is a fully Sri Lankan owned and operated service without any foreign skill or funding.

Sri Lanka already has the government owned and operated Independent Television Network (ITN), Young Asia Television (YATV), ETV 1 and ETV 2 and the Telshan Network's TNL TV.


(Craigs comment LMI 1 at 75E, I think the tests from this channel were received in Australia, can anyone get this channel now?)




7/12/01

Sorry no time to do an update today, don't worry everything reported today will be included in tommorows update!




6/12/01

Still having stormy weather getting a bit sick of it, have not looked for any signals today. There is a new TVBS mux on Pas 2 4026 V Sr 22000 Fec 3/4, hopefully it will stay FTA. Not that we are short of Chinese/Taiwanese channels! A press release about EBU and Asiasat 2 in the news section. More comming there hopefully.Sorry about the shortage of news but what I am finding is hopefully of interest.


From my Emails & ICQ


From Chris Pickstock

The ABC TV 4 test cards on B1 12670 H, 12688 H, and 12706 H have been replaced at the moment with a continuous promo for Fly TV. Been there all day.

Chris


From Dave Nolan

Pas 2 4026 V Sr 22000 Fec 3/4 New mux

"TVBS. TVBS-N. TVBS-G. MUCH. ERA-NEWS. ASIA. TVBS-N(USA). ASIAPLUS."
Both Asia ones are scrambled. All Chinese to me.

Seen Wednesday

Optus B1 12395 H Sr 7200 "Prime Minister's XI vs South Africa' Cricket match


From the Dish


AAp1 108.2E 12730 V Sr 28125 "TVBS MUX "unconfirmed here. Any other rreports of this KU band satellite?

Telkom 1 108E 3460 H The TelkomVision mux has started here, see Lyngsat site for new sids and Pids

Website for them http://www.telkomvision.com/

Telkom 1 108E 4085 H "Trans TV" is still on, Sr 6000, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256. (This one either weaker or not same beam as TelekomVision mux)

Thaicom 2 78.5E 3764 H "BBTV Channel 7" has left.

LMI 1 75E 3430 H "TV Lanka" has started regular transmissions on, Sid2, Vpid 1160 Apid 1120.

PAS 10 68.5E 3932 V "Maharishi Veda Vision" has left

Upcomming Satellites

Insat 3C is scheduled to be located at 74 East.


NEWS


PRESS RELEASE

EBU Adds C-band Capacity on AsiaSat 2

Hong Kong, 5th December 2001... Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Limited (AsiaSat) and the European Broadcasting Union (EBU) announced today the signing of a new lease agreement for additional C-band capacity on AsiaSat 2. This comes only six months after the EBU renewed its first lease of a full 36 MHz C-band transponder on AsiaSat 2. All the capacity is used for transmitting regular and ad-hoc video contribution feeds between Asia and Europe.

Speaking about the new lease agreement, the EBU's Director of Operations, Stefan Kürten, said “we first extended our Eurovision Network into Asia with our first lease on AsiaSat 2 in 1999 and we are very satisfied with its performance. While there are more and more major events taking place in Asia, leasing additional capacity would provide us the ability to strengthen our services to our users and increase the number of export feeds towards the Asia-Pacific region from Europe and other regions of the world”.

?We are very pleased that the EBU increased their capacity in Asia on AsiaSat 2. AsiaSat 2 has proved to be a very successful satellite gateway between Asia and Europe with its extensive C-band footprint and the availability of turnaround facilities, in addition to its excellent access to many Asian broadcasters and wholesale news agencies. We look forward to offering the EBU better transmission services of live sports and news events in Asia,” said Peter Jackson, Chief Executive Officer of AsiaSat.

The EBU's Eurovision Network provides ad-hoc transmission services used to distribute sports, news and cultural programme material to its members and customers. Fully digital with a total capacity over Europe of up to 38 channels, over Asia of 6 channels and over the Americas of up to 11 channels, Eurovision Network is the number one provider of international television transmission services in the world, with more than 100,000 news items and 8500 hours of sporting and cultural events transmitted in 2000 alone. In sports, the network's coverage of the Sydney Olympics was the most ambitious such operation ever undertaken, supplying 200 hours of coverage per day, while the number of items carried over the network in the aftermath of the 11 September events broke all records, with more than 1150 transmissions on the first day of the Afghanistan campaign alone. Today, the Eurovision Network services are the market leader in Asia in live news and sports international carriage services.

The EBU groups 70 national broadcasters from 51 countries in the European area. Its activities include operating the Eurovision and Euroradio networks, the co-ordination of news and sports programming, promotion of technical standardisation, stimulation of co-productions, and the defence and promotion of public service broadcasting.

AsiaSat 2, a Lockheed Martin Series 7000 model, carries twenty 36 MHz and four 72 MHz C-band, as well as nine 54 MHz Ku-band linearised transponders. Its C-band footprint covers 53 countries embracing Asia, the Middle East, Eastern Europe, Australasia and the C.I.S. AsiaSat 2 also has a high-power Ku beam serving the Greater China region, Korea and Japan.

AsiaSat is Asia’s leading provider of high-quality satellite services to both the broadcast and telecommunications markets. AsiaSat serves telecommunications customers for public telephone networks, private VSAT networks and high speed Internet and multimedia services. AsiaSat plans to launch a further satellite, AsiaSat 4 to be positioned at 122 degrees East in the first half of 2002. AsiaSat is a wholly owned subsidiary of Asia Satellite Telecommunications Holdings Limited, listed on both the Hong Kong (SEHK: 1135HK) and New York (NYSE: SAT) stock exchanges.

For further details, please contact:

Sabrina Cubbon
General Manager Marketing
AsiaSat
Tel: (852) 2805 6650
Fax: (852) 2504 3875
Mobile: (852) 9097 1210
Email: scubbon@asiasat.com

Winnie Pang
Corporate Affairs Manager
AsiaSat
Tel: (852) 2805 6657
Fax: (852) 2504 3875
Email: wpang@asiasat.com

Paolo Pusterla
Head of Marketing and Sales
EBU
Tel: (41 22) 717 2115
Fax: (41 22) 717 2116
Email: pusterla@ebu.ch

Rida Attarashany
EBU Communications
Tel: (41 22) 717 2034
Fax: (41 22) 717 2200
Email: attarashany@ebu.ch


Optus’ Xmas pressie to staff: forced annual leave


From http://www.zdnet.com.au/newstech/hr/story/0,2000024989,20262207,00.htm

Optus will force 1700 staff to take annual leave over the festive period, a move that will save the country’s second largest telco AU$14 million, according to Union officials.

Optus has confirmed that it will close its Business Division for three weeks on Christmas eve, forcing 1700 employees to take annual leave, and will run with a skeleton staff. “There’s not a lot of point, or much sense, in having them do very little,” an Optus spokesperson told ZDNet Australia.

?It’s quite common for companies to have staff take leave over quiet periods,” he added. When asked to comment on the fact that such a move is usually a recurring initiative that is acknowledged at the onset of employment, the spokesperson conceded “you are quite right, we have not done this before”.

According to Optus, which would not disclose how much cost savings it expected to generate from the move, there should be no need to take further cost cutting initiatives following the mandatory annual leave. However, when asked if the company was confident the move would see no layoffs in that particular division in the future, the telco’s spokesperson said he would not speculate on what would happen further down the track.

?If costs are still high in one particular area we’ll take moves to make sure those costs are kept under control,” the spokesperson said. He added that Optus’ Operation Win Through initiative – which aimed to reduce costs by 10 percent over a two year period – is finished and the Christmas cost cutting measure is no part of that.

The Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union (CEPU) said that its primary concern was whether or not Optus has the right to take such action under the Enterprise Agreement. The Union is also concerned of the impact on staff who have not accrued three weeks leave and those who have made plans and booked holidays for next year.

?Of course that will be looked at compationately,” Optus’ spokesperson said, adding that if staff have booked annual leave for next year it will be looked at on a “case-by-case basis”.

The Union said it is also concerned at reports of “management coercion” to force employees to fill in leave application forms.

"We fail to see how forcing an employee who does not have accrued leave to take leave is going to save Optus any money at all. Perhaps the CEO and CFO could donate some of the AU$10 million in options they received last year to help some workers save their leave entitlements," Union organiser Mark Brownlow said.

The Union claims it has attempted to have discussions with Optus on several occasions over the issue.

"As Optus are unwilling to discuss this with us we have been left with no choice but to notify the Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC) of a dispute and to seek their assistance in resolving it,” Brownlow said.




5/12/01

Not much action today, thanks to all that turned up in the chatroom, conversation was a bit quiet I think most had an eye on the cricket. Speaking of cricket England vs India is on up there somewhere, maybe via Pas 2 thats where the last cricket series was. The game is going live the the U.S so its there or on 701. Still have very strong winds here, so my dish is "parked" vertical side on to the wind which is still blowing from the north.


From my Emails & ICQ


Nothing to report


From the Dish


PAS 8 166E 3860 H New frequency and FEC for the Taiwanese mux on tp 8: Fec 5/6.
PAS 8 166E 3860 H 29 radio channels have started, Apids 551-801.

Optus B3 156E 12313 H "Austar TV Homepage" has lef.

JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V"MTV Entertainment" on, Vpid 1232 Apid 1233,

Telkom 1 108E 3500 H "The TelkomVision" mux has moved to 3460 H. Sr 27500 Fec 3/4 (anyone have the pids and sids?)
Telkom 1 108E 4085 H "Trans TV" has left (Someone in Northern Aus reports this one is actually back 4085H Sr 6000)

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3585 V "Star Vijay" has left, replaced by a test card.

Apstar 2R 76.5E 3848 H "UTV Testcard" , Vpid 510 Apid 511


NEWS


Austar shelves broadband Internet, for now


From http://www.it.mycareer.com.au/breaking/2001/12/04/FFXPCAYJSUC.html

Regional pay TV company Austar United Communications confirmed today it will switch off its satellite broadband Internet service.

Austar United head of corporate affairs Bruce Meagher said today the "few thousand" Austar Broadband customers using the satellite downlink and landline uplink service would be notified of the service's closure "after a couple of months".

The company will stop marketing the chello branded service and instead focus on developing its narrowband assets.

"What we're actually doing with the broadband service is putting it on hold. There hasn't really been a significant uptake of broadband that we've experienced, and that's not just true for us," Meagher said.

"We've still got the MMDS (multipoint microwave distribution system) spectrum which is the main way we deliver broadband, and we certainly will be holding onto that with a view to assessing the situation in a couple of years' time if the broadband market takes off."

Meagher said Austar would also keep an open mind on whether the company would relaunch broadband services independently or take a partner on board.

He said the company would concentrate on its 80,000 customer strong narrowband Internet service now that the COMindico point of presence backbone had doubled the service's local call access reach throughout Australia.

Meagher said the uptake of broadband in Australia had been limited by the lack of content.

"The problem is that most people don't know what broadband is," he said. "In order to make it work you need to charge a reasonably high monthly fee and it's very hard to get people to pay that amount of money for a service that they don't really understand what it's doing for them.

"The other problem is that there is not an enormous amount of good broadband content. It's one thing to say you're getting a fast service but if all you're doing is getting what you can get over a narrowband service, you don't."

Austar earlier this year reworked its partnership with chello broadband, with Austar taking operational responsibility for the deployment of chello in Australia, including network configuration, marketing and sales.

Under the reworked deal made in January this year, chello was responsible for content and portal development.


SonicBlue owns digital video recording


From http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/54/23179.html

SonicBlue has been granted a multi-claim patent that covers almost every aspect of digitally recording TV programmes on a hard drive, in particular using a channel guide to manage what the machine records.

The patent, number 6,324,338, was filed by ReplayTV back in the summer of 1998. Since then ReplayTV was bought by SonicBlue - the deal was signed last March and completed in August. SonicBlue is now claiming the intellectual property for its own.

The patent describes a "video data recordable having integrated channel guides allowing a user to control recording and storage of television signals into personal channels for later playback and viewing". It covers pretty much anything you can do with a digital video recorder (DVR), including filing recorded programming into channels, providing previews, storing recordings on a random-access system, and making selections according to programme type and information culled from viewing habits. In short, the works.

The patent gives SonicBlue a sound basis to license its intellectual property to consumer electronics companies keen to move quickly into the DVR market. SonicBlue reckons that in five to seven years DVRs will be as commonplace as VCRs are today, though we'd hazard a guess that by then re-recordable DVDs will be competing for the same consumers.

Even so - and SonicBlue's battle with the US TV networks over its latest machine's ability to zap ads notwithstanding - we can see other companies wanting to get into the DVR business. Sony has already licensed TiVo's technology, but holding the basic intellectual property will allow SonicBlue to profit from such deals even if it's not directly involved.

Of course, what makes the DVR better than the VCR, from a practical standpoint, is the channel guide mechanism, says ReplayTV founder and now SonicBlue CTO Andrew Wolfe. True, but while SonicBlue's patent covers such as system in use in conjunction with a DVR, it isn't sufficiently broad to stop anyone building such a mechanism into a DVD or cassette-based recorder.

Still, it's one in the eye for ReplayTV's arch-rival, TiVo. ®




4/12/01

Live chat tonight 8.30pm Syd time and from 9 P.M NZ onwards. It's good to see some other locals from NZ in there discussing local stuff. Where have all the Aussie regulars gone?

2 new links to NZ satellite dealers added to the Links page. Let me know if you know of any others.



From my Emails & ICQ


From "ANON"

Hi Craig

RE: Telekom 1 108E

The test on 3500 Horz have moved to 3460 Horz using the same Symbol and FEC. The Channels will not load as the sid table is wrong. But all channels are there and in the clear.


From the Dish


PAS 8 166E 3850 H "Taiwanese mux" has a new SR of 28000.
PAS 8 166E 12564 H New frequency and SR for Ihug on tp 20: Sr 23704.

JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V "ETTV News" is FTA on , Sid 13, Vpid 1232 Apid 1233.

Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "Taiwanese MUX", Sr 7406, Fec 3/4

Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "FTV Entertainment", Sid 1, Vpid 32, Apid 33
Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "FTV News Channel", Sid 2, Vpid 34, Apid 35
Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "CTS", Sid 3, Vpid 36 Apid 37.

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V "Two Les Amis de TV test cards" have started on , Sr 6500, Fec 3/4, SIDs 10 and 20, PIDs 257/258 and 513/514.

Intelsat 704 66E 3853 L "CNBC Asia" has started , Sr 6000, Fec 2/3, Vpid 289 Apid 290, NW zone beam.


NEWS


Optus eyes Foxtel link


From http://australianit.news.com.au/articles/0,7204,3368497%5E15316%5E%5Enbv%5E15306,00.html

OPTUS looks to be flirting with several options for its pay-TV operation, including some sort of link-up with rival Foxtel in a move that could precipitate change in the structure of the local pay TV industry.

Yesterday, Optus chief executive Chris Anderson met Foxtel shareholders, News Ltd chairman Lachlan Murdoch and Publishing & Broadcasting chairman James Packer, at News's Sydney offices.

None of the parties would comment on the meeting.

Since its acquisition by Singapore Telecommunications, Optus has been reviewing its consumer and multimedia unit, which operates the pay-TV business - including a possible merger with Austar.

But according to sources, it became concerned by Foxtel's purchase of a satellite licence that will boost its competition in Austar's regional markets.

Optus now is believed to be focusing on ways to share programming with Foxtel.

Its outgoing managing director of the consumer and multimedia division, Adrian Chamberlain, recently called for the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to be given greater power to regulate content so it was freely available to all operators.

A direct merger between Optus and Foxtel would probably be rejected by the ACCC. But Optus is believed to be examining establishing separate content companies that would sell programming independently to pay-TV groups.

Under such a scheme, Foxtel and Optus's pay-TV units would operate in the wholesale programming market, while specially created companies took the retail market.

For instance, a Foxtel content company might sell to any of the various pay-TV businesses. Similarly, Optus's ContentCo would sell programming across pay-TV groups.

However, the idea of sharing content has been rejected before by Foxtel chief executive Jim Blomfield.

The Optus move comes ahead of a decision by Foxtel on whether to pursue its own satellite strategy. That would require launching a new satellite, at up to $400 million.

But it has been suggested that it could be funded externally, with Foxtel leasing back transponder space.

Meanwhile, Austar is expected to announce today that it will sack as much as half its workforce as it attempts to cut costs.


Austar to axe 400 staff


From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,3370812%255E1702,00.html

PAY television company Austar United Communications is to make more than 400 staff redundant as part of a major restructuring of its business.

The Sydney-based company said the restructuring was aimed at focusing on profitable growth, reducing costs and capital expenditure and improving productivity.

The Austar board has decided to outsource a number of existing functions, cease to operate its own Internet network, streamline sales and customer service processes and reduce general corporate overheads.

Savings from the measures are anticipated to be about $90 million on an annualised basis, of which about one third will be related to capital expenditure reductions and the balance to operational savings.

Austar said that in excess of 400 staff would be made redundant from or soon after December 31, 2001.

Staff affected will be advised today. They will receive all statutory benefits owing and will be entitled to redundancy payments in accordance with the company's policies.


T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 48/2001 - 2 December 2001 -

A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by Tele Satellite International

Editor: Branislav Pekic

Edited apsattv.com Edition

air three times daily.

weekdays and 07:00-14:00 at weekends.

cable systems.

A S I A


AUSTRALIA


MURDOCH NO LONGER LARGEST SHAREHOLDER IN NEWS CORP

Rupert Murdoch has lost his place as the largest shareholder in global media
group News Corp after his failed bid for control of US satellite television
group DirecTV. Television mogul John Malone’s Liberty Media Group now holds
just under 18 per cent of News Corp while Mr Murdoch holds 16.25 per cent.
However, Mr Murdoch will retain control of the company with his stake
accounting for nearly 30 per cent of the voting shares, with Mr Malone holding
mainly non-voting shares. The new order came into affect after News Corp issued
more than 115 million preferred non-voting shares to Liberty Media in exchange
for lifting its stake in Gemstar-TV Guide to 43 per cent. The shares will buy
News Corp four per cent of Gemstar. They were issued as part of an agreement
struck with Liberty Media more than a year ago as part of plans for News Corp
to float its suite of satellite television assets under the Sky Global Networks
banner.


GOVERNMENT TO CHANGE MEDIA LAWS

On November 29, the government pushed its plans to relax media ownership laws
with Prime Minister John Howard saying he wants to increase opportunities for
foreigners to own Australian media. Communications Minister Richard Alston said
the government would soon begin drafting new media ownership laws that remove
current restrictions but still emphasize diversity of opinion. Under existing
laws, newspaper, radio and television companies in the same city are limited to
holding 15% stakes in each other. The laws also restrict foreign companies from
controlling more than 15% of a television company and 25% of a newspaper. "I
just don't think that any longer we should have these rigid divisions," Howard
told radio station 5DN. "I would obviously like to see some greater
opportunities, providing local media proprietors have a fair go as well...for
foreigners." All major media companies in Australia have lobbied for a
relaxation in cross-media ownership rules and easing of restrictions of foreign
ownership of Australian media.


CHINA - HONG KONG


DIGITAL TRIALS ALREADY UNDER WAY

China is to develop its digital TV market gradually over the next few years,
official sources told the “Xinhua” news agency. At present, China is
broadcasting digital TV programs in Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen cities on an
experimental basis. Zeng Peiyan, minister in charge of the State Development
Planning Commission, told a national meeting on digital TV in Beijing on
November 28 that China will introduce digital TV broadcasting to cable TV
networks and then expand the service to the fields of satellite and wireless
transmissions. He said that by 2008, all the major cities in China will adopt
digital TV broadcasting. Preparations will be made for large-scale production
of digital TV chips, software and high-definition monitors.


CAN TO LAUNCH SEVEN NEW CHANNELS

Multimedia consortium Communications Asia Ltd. on November 29 announced the
launch of its Asian broadcast company, Communications Asia Network, to be
headquartered in Hong Kong. The new broadcasting platformfunded with an initial
$35 million from New York’s Allen & Co., Europe’s New Sky Satellite and a host
of anonymous investors from the United States and Scandinaviawill be based in
Hong Kong and expects to roll out seven new channels of programming by the end
of next year. CAN will be launching channels on Asian history (Heritage
Channel), health and food (Life TV), education (Inspire TV), arts and culture
(Performance TV), agriculture (Harvest Channel) and emergency relief aid
(Shelter Channel), as well as an interactive viewing guide (Navigate TV).


TVB SEEKS EXTENSION ON MEASAT DEAL

Television Broadcasts Ltd has said it is seeking an extension of time on the
issue of a circular to its shareholders pertaining to its 3-year deal with
Measat Broadcast Network Systems to provide Chinese language content and
advertising. The company said in a statement that it required more time to
finalise some information and had applied for an extension of time to issue the
circular on or before December 13. TVB units TVBI Co Ltd and TVB Satellite TV
Entertainment Ltd have entered into a three-year conditional deal memorandum
with Measat to provide Chinese language content and sell advertising and
sponsorship on certain TV channels. Under the deal, TVBI will grant Measat the
right to distribute the programming contents of TVB8 Channel, TVBS-Asia
Channel, Xing He Channel and the licensed programmes on Astro’s satellite
pay-TV services in Malaysia and Brunei. Measat will have the exclusive right of
distribution for all the content except for the Xing He Channel, where TVBI may
license the programme to other parties for free-to-air television distribution.



CSBAA URGES CRACKDOWN AGAINST PIRATES

The Cable and Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia says the use of
illegal decoders to receive pay-TV signals in Hong Kong is costing the industry
around $30 million. According to industry experts, an estimated 100,000 illegal
decoders are in use here. An association spokesman, Simon Davies, said this had
discouraged many of the largest media investors from setting up headquarters
here in the past three years. He called on the government to strengthen the
Copyright Ordinance instead of relying on changes in decoder technology.


JAPAN


TVB TO LAUNCH MANDARIN CHANNEL

Television Broadcasts Ltd.'s unit TVBI has formed a strategic alliance with
Japan's Dai Fu which saw the launch of a 24-hour Mandarin-language general
entertainment channel on December 1. TVBI will operate the channel under a
license held by Dai Fu, which counts Fuji Television Network Inc., Sony
Broadcast Media Co. Ltd., and Kyocera Corp. among its shareholders. This is
TVB's first 24-hour channel in Japan, which has a population of more than one
million Chinese. The new channel will be known as TVB Dai Fu, and is being
modelled after a similar co-operation pact between Dai Fu and CCTV, the
state-owned China Central Television. Like CCTV Dai Fu, TVB Dai Fu is being
carried by DTH satellite TV service SkyPerfect, which has a subscriber base of
2.8 million households in Japan. TVB Dai Fu features programs from TVB's cable
channel in Taiwan, known as TVBS, entertainment news from its satellite channel
TVB8, and dramas from TVB's video library.


NAT GEO CHANNEL ON SKY PERFECTV PLATFORM

After signing a carriage deal with the SkyPerfect TV satellite platform, the
National Geographic Channel will air a daily block through the week to over 1
million households across the territory. The block will run from 20:00-midnight
on weekdays, and 13:00-21:00 on weekends. In the Asia-Pacific region, the Nat
Geo Channel is distributed round-the-clock to some 32 million homes and as a
daily block to some 50 million cable homes.


CHANNEL V AND SPACE SHOWER TO DEVELOP MUSIC TV SERVICES

Japan's Space Shower Networks Inc. and Channel V Music Networks Ltd.
Partnership, a Hong Kong-based Asian music service provider, said on November
29 they have agreed to form an alliance to develop new music TV services in
Japan. Under the agreement, Channel V will hold about a 10% stake in Space
Shower, becoming the second leading shareholder after Itochu Corp. The
operations of Channel V International in Japan, currently shown on the
SkyPerfecTV! platform, will be transferred to the alliance. Channel V is a
joint venture between Star Group, a unit of Australia's News Corp., and EMI
Music, a company of the London-listed EMI Group PLC. The Hong Kong-based music
service provider operates 6 TV channels in Asia and Australasia with more than
46 million viewers. Space Shower, the first Japanese music speciality network,
has a 24-hour Japanese music television channel broadcast on SkyPerfecTV! and
other cable television stations across Japan, reaching about 3.8 million
households.


PHILLIPINES


STAR TV CLOSE TO DEAL WITH LOCAL CABLERS

Star TV Group said it was "cautiously optimistic" that a settlement with cable
TV firms Sky Vision Corp. and Philippine Home Cable Holdings Corp. was near.
David Ilagan, vice president for distribution of Cable Technology Asia Corp.,
Star TV's Philippine arm, said they were optimistic that the cable operators
would accept their settlement proposal and that Star channels would again be
seen on SkyCable and Home Cable. He added that Star decided to present a
settlement proposal to the cable firms because the firms themselves presented
to the program provider a repayment schedule for their outstanding debts. Aside
from the debt repayment schedule, representatives of the cable firms and the
program provider also discussed a new long-term carriage deal. That new supply
deal will see Star Movies, Star World, ESPN, Star Sports and National
Geographic carried on all the SkyCable, Home Cable and Pilipino Cable systems,"
Star's regional director Charles Pollard said in a statement.


SOUTH KOREA


DISCOVERY SIGNS DISTRIBUTION DEAL WITH C&M

Discovery Networks Asia has signed a distribution agreement with C&M Co which
will see DNA supplying a 24-hour Korean-subtitled channel, which the country’s
largest cable operator C&M will distribute to some 77 cable networks in the
territory. The channel will launch in the capital Seoul on ten networks with a
total of over 450,000 subscribers an estimated 40% of cable households in that
city. Singapore-based Discovery Networks Asia broadcasters three channel
Discovery, Travel & Adventure and Animal Planet into some 70 million
Asia-Pacific households.




3/12/01

I added Telekom 1 to the satellites, just typical all those channel encrypted! I moved by dish back to Palapa C2 to follow the activity there. The past few days we have had Tropical storms with very strong winds. I saw my dish nearly blow itself inside out. I was out there at 2 a.m tightening things up. A new Mux on Asiasat 2 is supposed to start today "Satlink" with an offering of 5 channels lets hope they are fta I have not had a chance to check it out. There is a lot of very interesting news in the news section.

Satfacts page updated


From my Emails & ICQ


From Bill Richards 03-12-01

1920 UTC

Palapa C2 3633 H, Sr 7406, Fec 3/4

MMBN restarted or testing ??
12 Channels load

Vpid32 Apid33 SID1 FTV
Vpid34 Apid35 SID2 FTV
Vpid36 Apid37 SID3 Colour Bar
Vpid38 Apid39 SID4 No Video or Audio
Vpid40 Apid41 SID5 " "
Vpid42 Apid43 SID6 " "
Vpid80 Apid81 SID7 " "
Vpid82 Apid83 SID8 " "
Vpid48 Apid49 SID9 " "
Vpid50 Apid51 SID10" "
Vpid53 Apid54 SID11" "
Vpid98 Apid99 SID12" "

Regards
Bill


From Ahmad Mobasheri

Dear Craig,

Could you please post the following on your site:

Help wanted, from Nokia 9600S( with Cam) owner/s for a later operating
system than CI2.6. Also instruction for loading latest DVB, campatible
with this receiver.

With many thanks
parsiman@xtra.co.nz


From Andrew Harrison

Telkom 1 108E All channels on the 3500 H Bq are now encrypted.

He also includes a Screenshot From I701



From the Dish


Optus B3 156E 12501 H "The Disney Channel Australia has left again, replaced by a test card.

Gorizont 33 145E 3675 R "ORT, Radio Mayak and Radio Rossii" have started on , SECAM, 7.00, 7.50 and 8.00 MHz.

Gorizont 25 140E 3675 R "ORT, Radio Mayak and Radio Rossii" have left (SECAM), moved to Gorizont 33.

Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "FTV and a test card have started on Sr 7406, Fec 3/4, Sids 1-3, PIDs 32/33-36/37.

Telkom 1 108E 3500 H "Trans TV" has started regular transmissions on Vpid 592 Apid 593 , MPEG-2/enc.,
Telkom 1 108E 4085 H "Trans TV" has started regular transmissions on, Sr 6000, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256.
Telkom 1 108E 3500 H All channels are now encrypted.
(T Kameda)

Asiasat 2 100.5E 3714 V "Les amis de tv" Sr 6500, Fec 3/4 (anyone have info on this?)
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3704 V "Satlink Mux" Sr 5632 Fec 3/4 (website http://www.satlink-com.com/ )

Apstar 2R 76.5E 3848 H "UTV" has started on , Sid 500, Vpid 510 Apid 511.New SR for this mux: 13280.


NEWS


Launch of MCPC Platform on Asiasat 2

From http://www.satlink-com.com/Content/NewsDetails.asp?NewsId=6

On December 1st, 2001 Satlink launched its 18 Mhz MCPC Platform on Asiasat 2, TXP 2A for channel distribution. The digital package will include 5 TV channels for distribution in Japan and Asia


HK Asia Satellite On Track To Launch AsiaSat 4 In 1H 2002


From satnewsasia.com

Asia Satellite Telecommunications Holdings Ltd. (AsiaSat) will launch its new AsiaSat 4 satellite in the first half of 2002.

Chief Executive Peter Jackson said the company plans to launch AsiaSat 4 before the middle of next year, squelching rumors that a delay was probable because of a hefty increase in insurance premiums following September's terrorist attacks on the U.S. Insurers have increased their rates to 30 percent from 15-16 percent of total project costs, but Asia Satellite has not committed to any policies, said Jackson. AsiaSat could also consider other options such as in-house insurance, he added.

He also noted that transponder usage rates continue to be soft due to the global economic downturn. AsiaSat has to contend with a slower growth rate in transponder usage and described 2001 as a tougher year marked by this double whammy.

Earlier, AsiaSat said it would be very difficult to achieve growth after it reported that the economic slowdown caused its first-half net profit to drop.

AsiaSat provides two main services—telecommunications (including VSAT) and broadcasting—on all its three in-orbit satellites. AsiaSat 1, launched in April 1990, provides satellite transponder capacity in Asia. AsiaSat 2 was launched in November 1995 and started commercial operation in January 1996. AsiaSat 3S, the company's newest satellite, was launched in March 1999 and started commercial operations two months later. It replaced AsiaSat 1 at the orbital location of 105.5 degrees East.

AsiaSat 3S has a C-band footprint similar to that of AsiaSat 2, two Ku-band fixed beams covering East and South Asia and a steerable Ku beam.


Shin Satellite Expects Deals With India, Australia Early 2002; Readies Offering of Broadband Services


From satnewsasia.com

Thailand's Shin Satellite said it expects to sign contracts in early 2002 with companies in India and Australia to pre-sell the transponders of its soon-to-be launched iPSTAR broadband satellite.

Executive Chairman Dumrong Kasemset said 10% of iPSTAR’s transponders will be pre-sold to each country. After concluding deals with India and Australia, around 45% of iPSTAR's total capacity will have been leased, said Kasemset.

Shin Sat has already signed contracts with companies in Malaysia and China, who will receive transponders in exchange for investing in constructing iPSTAR.

The iPSTAR 1 broadband satellite will be launched in 2003. It will become Shin’s Satellite’s fourth in-orbit satellite and its most powerful. IPSTAR 1, with a capacity of 35 gigabytes, is considered to be among the largest in Southeast Asia.

Shin Sat is Southeast Asia's second-largest satellite service provider. It operates three satellites: Thaicom 1A, 2 and 3. Thaicom1A has 12 C-Band transponders and 3 Ku-Band transponders. Thaicom 2 has 10 C-Band transponders and 3 Ku-Band transponders. Thaicom 3 has 25 C-Band transponders and 14 Ku-Band transponders.

The company plans to raise US$360 million through bank loans to finance construction of iPSTAR 1. The U.S. Export-Import Bank is expected to approve a US$250 million loan for the project next year, with other commercial banks providing the rest of the funding.

Shin Sat will launch commercial broadband services in Thailand this week to capture more of the competitive Internet market. Shin Sat would provide high-speed data communications and Internet services by using its iPSTAR satellite's ground station and transponders on its Thaicom 3 satellite. Shin Sat had appointed its unit, CS Communications, to handle a marketing effort targeted at small to large-sized corporations.

Shin Sat, 51 percent owned by the Shin Corp group of the family of Thai Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, generated a US$26.6 million net profit in the first nine months of 2001.


BBC slated to go digital from today; will FTV also meet 1 December encryption deadline?


From indiantelevision.com

BBC World, which turned 10 in India in October 2001, turned digital today. The news service will continue the analog feed on the PAS 10 satellite till 31 March 2002. The channel has additionally started beaming off the Telkom 1 satellite for audiences in southeast Asia.

BBC's digitisation effort is not restricted to India but will extend across the full footprint of PAS-10 satellite's BBC World South Asia feed, BBC officials who visited the country last month said. This will cover Pakistan, Nepal, Sri Lanka, Middle East, Bhutan and Bangladesh. BBC is received as a 24 hour service in 11 million homes in India.

Another channel which was slated to encrypt today is the one that irks India's information and broadcasting minister Sushma Swaraj - Fashion Television or FTV. The channel had promised to encrypt on 1 November but later deferred it by one month. Although Modi Entertainment Network officials had earlier claimed that 60 per cent of the seeding operations concerning distribution of set top boxes had been completed, there is no official word from MEN on whether the operations are completed for the 1 December deadline.

FTV claims a viewer base of 23 million, which it insists will stay post -encryption as well. Sources had said earlier that MEN would be bundling FTV along with Hallmark and DD Sports, the two other channels it currently distributes along with French music channel MCM. FTV had earlier been beaming off the Asiasat 2 satellite.

A few MSOs have already switched off FTV. 7 Star Network, which operates in Mumbai's northern suburbs, has already stopped transmitting the channel. FTV had been knocked off TV screens in Kolkata by RPG Netcom, a leading signal provider in the city in November, following the announcement of the switch to a pay channel.

Among other Asian channels which have shifted to the Indonesian satellite Telkom 1 from 1 December are CNBC Asia, Bloomberg TV Asia and Fashion TV.


Lenders tell Austar to slash workforce


From http://www.smh.com.au/news/0112/03/biztech/biztech2.html

Austar is under pressure to sack up to half its workforce if it is to refinance its $400 million debt before December 31.

It is believed that Austar senior management were told at a meeting on Friday that 46 per cent of the company's 1,000 staff would be retrenched. The unprofitable regional pay TV provider is expected to make an announcement on the job cuts this week.

Slashing its workforce is crucial if Austar is to renegotiate its $400 million loan, which falls due at the end of this month. "The only way they will receive the refinancing is if they go through a huge cost-cutting operation and one of the largest costs is headcount," said a source.

The job losses are believed to come largely from Austar's networks division, with many operations expected to be outsourced. An Austar spokesman could not be reached for comment last night.

Yet to reach agreement with its bankers, time is running out for Austar. If Austar fails to refinance the loan, it could be forced to repay the full amount in the new year.

"If the $400 million bank facility were to become payable then the company would need to obtain funding from other external sources, including its parent UnitedGlobalCom, restructure its operations or sell assets," the company told the Australian Stock Exchange last month.

At the time Austar said it would provide the market with a full briefing on its financing issues, cost saving initiatives and future strategic direction in early December. This is now not expected until next week at the earliest. Austar remains confident it will renegotiate its loan before the end of the month.

Facing a full year loss of $390 million and with just $127.5 million cash left in the bank, Austar has been seeking ways to improve its financial position.

Sensing Austar's vulnerability, metropolitan rival pay TV operators Optus and Foxtel have begun circling their struggling regional counterpart. Austar revealed last month that it had held "very preliminary" discussions with Optus about a broader relationship.

Austar's US parent United Global Com - which owns 81 per cent of the company - is expected to step in at the last instance to avert any potential collapse of the Australian business. However, UGC has its own financial woes, having defaulted on interest last month.

Despite owning a monopoly in the regional pay TV market, Austar's business is floundering. Its ill-fated attempts to diversify beyond pay TV sent the company's capital expenditure costs spiralling, while the exchange rate has made US-dollar program contracts with Hollywood studios even more expensive.

Meanwhile Austar's pay TV subscriber growth has virtually ground to a halt.


New HK-based Broadcaster to Launch Asia-wide Satellite Services


From satnewsasia.com

Communication Asia Network (CAN), a Hong Kong-based broadcaster, will soon launch an Asia-wide satellite service with China as its priority market.

CAN intends to transmit its service via local cable operators, offering seven channels tailored to Asian audiences. The broadcaster will not produce its own programs in the first two years but will broadcast repackaged programs dubbed into local languages for specific markets. CAN will offer cultural, educational and information programming, including an agricultural channel for farmers.

A media fund with investors in the United States and Europe owns 60 percent of the company while the company's management team holds the rest. Chief executive Peter de Krassel said CAN will employ about 200 people in the first 18 months of service.

CAN expects the company to break even in three years by offering cheaper advertising rates, especially in China. CAN hopes to sign up eight broadcasters in China, including state-run China Central Television (CCTV), when it launches in the middle of next year. The company is talking to two Hong Kong broadcasters, according to Krassel.


(Craigs comment, could be interesting I wonder if they will be using the new Jcsat 8 when it launches, or possibly a new Apstar, this headl;ine from another report which I don't have access to, "Communication Asia Network said it would use Hong Kong as a base to launch a pan-Asia satellite service stretching from New Zealand to Iran but concentrating on China")


Russia, Australia to Launch Joint Space Project in February 2002


From satnewsasia.com

Australia and Russia next February will jointly launch a small satellite that will later be operated by schoolchildren from both countries.

The small satellite, named Kolibri, will be launched from the International Space Station (ISS), according to the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Kolibri weighs less than 23 kilograms and has been delivered to the ISS by the Russian Progress cargo space ship.

In February, the Kolibri and Progress will separate from the ISS and start their autonomous flight. The vehicle carries scientific devices that monitor the earth’s magnetic and electric fields and the flow of space particles. This data will be processed by senior schoolchildren from the Russian physics and mathematics school in the Russian town of Obninsk near Moscow and from two schools in Sydney.

The ISS is the largest and most complex international scientific project in history. when completed after the turn of the century, the the station will represent a move of unprecedented scale off the home planet. Led by the United States, the International Space Station draws upon the scientific and technological resources of 16 nations: Canada, Japan, Russia, 11 nations of the European Space Agency and Brazil.

More than four times as large as the Russian Mir space station, the completed International Space Station will have a mass of about 1,040,000 pounds. It will measure 356 feet across and 290 feet long, with almost an acre of solar panels to provide electrical power to six state-of-the-art laboratories.


3 GLONASS Satellites Launched December 1


From satnewsasia.com

Russia has successfully launched three more of its Global Navigation Satellite System (GLONASS) satellites.

The three satellites were carried into orbit by a Proton heavy booster rocket launched from the Baikonur cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. The trio of navigation satellites is to replenish and improve Russia’s global positioning constellation. GLONASS is a project of the Russian Defense Ministry and was launched in September 1993.

The Russians had originally intended to have 24 satellites in orbit. Because of the satellite’s short service life (up to three years), the constellation is now short of satellites. One of the three recently launched satellites, Uragan-M, has had its service life extended to about six years.

A Proton-K rocket blasted off from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan carrying two standard Uragan (Hurricane) spacecraft and a brand-new Uragan-M satellite for the GLONASS network, the Russian equivalent of the U.S. Navstar Global Positioning System (GPS).

The introduction of newer Uragan-M satellites promises to reduce operating costs of the GLONASS network thanks to the spacecraft's longer operational lifetime.




2/12/01

No site update today, I do like to take a break now and then




1/12/01

Prime TV to be available FTA via Optus B1 according to the following info some one emailed to me! Great news maybe they will be in with TVNZ mux on 12456 V. Tv1 and TV2 are finally available via Sky NZ and yes they are both FTA. Now for the bad news they are low resolution 544x576 and have no teletext service.

12671 V "TV One" Vpid 516 Apid 654 TXT 580 Sid 1031, FTA
12671 V "TV 2" Vpid 517 Apid 655 TXT 580 Sid 1032, FTA

No TXT service though the pids indicate there should be one

From: Carole Skaggs <cskaggs@primetv.co.nz>
To: <name removed>

Sent: Thursday, November 29, 2001 6:11 PM

Good afternoon, <name removed>,

Thank you for your email. Prime has also had an offer to go on
Optus B1. We expect to be available in the Nelson area early in the New Year.

Kind regards,


Carole Skaggs
PA to General Manager


From my Emails & ICQ


From Bill Richards

2315 UTC 1-12-01

Palapa C2 4000 H Sr 26085, Fec 3/4

Vpid1160 Apid1120 SID1 "Channel News Asia" Nokia Reports Channel Name as Channel News Asia
Vpid1260 Apid1220 SID2 "Channel News Asia" " " ch2
Vpid1360 Apid1320 SID3 "SA Test Card" " ch3
Vpid1460 Apid1420 SID4 "Channel News Asia" " " ch4
Vpid1560 Apid1520 SID5 "Channel News Asia" " " ch5
Vpid1660 Apid1620 SID6 "Channel News Asia" " " ch6

Palapa C2 3633 H Sr 7406, Fec 3/4

MMBN restarted ??12 Channels load FTV and CTS are FTA rest have no video or audio

Regards
Bill


From Chris Pickstock

B1, 12317 H, Sr 6980. Vpid 4194, Apid 4195. "WNBL"


From "SIAM GLOBAL"

On your website of the 27th you first reported the large bouquet on Telkom 108 E giving the SR as 24000. This threw all us websiters off the scent and like myself found and reported 3 encrypted channels ! Today the true SR of 27500 was reported and WHAM we had the whole bouquet ! Another quirk, should one have problems with this bouquet, is the polarity. Don't think anyone with a voltage switching LNBF would be able to receive it as its polarty on my receiver lies halfway between vertical and horizontal. However this one is such a blockbuster bouquet that I believe Craig is right, it will drive most fixed dishes off Palapa and on to Telkom....never before has BBC, BLOOMBERG, CNBC, AND FASHION CHANNEL been together FTA on one bird. The $64000 question of course is how long this bouquet will remain and how long FTA.

Siamglobal Bangkok


(Craigs comment, I expect at the time the Sr was correct as with any test they can change settings, now for the big question who in NZ can receive it? if its so strong someone at least in the North Island should be able to get it? have a look and please report what you find)


From the Dish


Optus B1 160E 12483 V "T81" has been renamed to "CODE" FTA, Apid 654 PCR 148 Sid 81 PMT 269, with "Pop Music"

Optus B3 156E Updates in Austar/Foxtel, MPEG-2/Irdeto:

Network Ten has started on 12376 H, PIDs 520/648.
Fox Footy Channel has replaced Fox Sports 1 on 12501 H, PIDs 520/648.
Fox 8 has replaced The Lifestyle Channel on 12501 H, PIDs 513/641.
Showtime 2 Australia has replaced The Comedy Ch. on 12501 H, PIDs 518/646.
A Foxtel info card has started on 12501 H, PIDs 523/651.
The Disney Ch. Australia has replaced Adults Only on 12501 H, PIDs 522/650.
ABC Fly has started on 12376 H, PIDs 519/647, 18-06.


(Craigs comment, Network 10 unconfirmed)

Asiasat 3 105.5E 3749 V "Ekushey TV" has new settings Sr 3418 and Fec 2/3.


NEWS


Thai Global Tv5 moving satellites


From http://www.thaitvnetwork.com/moreinfo.html

From January 1, 2002, you can enjoy better picture and sound quality on TGN, as we will make some changes in transmission to Australia and North America continent. We would like to ask viewers in the above area to adjust your equipments as follow:

These changes will affect audiences in Australia as follows

1. In Australia, From Optus B - 3 to PAS - 8 must adjust dish angle from 150E to
166E, Frequency to 12726 MHz, and Symbol Rate to 28.066 MS/S

- If you have any questions or cannot make the adjustments as shown, please contact your equipment supplier.

- TGN still offers Free To Air programs to all viewers, for the purpose of creating relationships among Thai people around the world, and to promote good Thai value.

- The signal transmission will be in parallel system, which includes both old and new system until December 31, 2001. And we will start applying only new system from January 1, 2002 onwards.

- We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. This upgrade is intended to be for the benefits of the viewers


(Craigs comment, "this upgrade intended to be for the benefits of the viewers" haha what a joke it means people in NZ can't watch it at all unless we buy a 3.7-5M Ku rated dish, no mention either of if it will remain FTA via Tarbs)


TelstraSaturn to cut numbers


From australianIT.com.au

NEW Zealand-based telecommunications and pay-TV company TelstraSaturn is reviewing its staffing levels and network rollout.

TelstraSaturn is a 50:50 joint venture between Telstra and regional Australian pay-TV operator Austar United Communications.

Earlier this month, TelstraSaturn announced plans to buy Clear Communications from British Telecommunications. The purchase is dependent on New Zealand Commerce Commission approval.

Telstra said Clear would be integrated with TelstraSaturn to create a new challenger in the New Zealand market, and give more services to customers.

TelstraSaturn's integration with Clear would bring the critical mass required for Telstra to be a long term serious contender in the NZ market.

There would be some staff reductions in New Zealand operations, and Telstra planned to combine operations as soon as possible after the purchase is completed in early December.

TelstraSaturn chief executive Rosemary Howard said a consultation process with staff had begun, relating to proposed changes occurring at the company.

"The global telecommunications market has been experiencing difficult conditions and is expected to do so for the medium term," she said.

"TelstraSaturn is also moving from its start-up phase to one where it needs to focus on efficient operations and generating revenue growth to consolidate its position for when market conditions improve," she said.

TelstraSaturn has a fibre-optic network in Wellington and has been working to build similar networks in Christchurch and Auckland.

"(But) with the need to consolidate and improve efficiencies, we have decided to pause the Christchurch rollout while we review how to improve financial returns in serving business and residential customers outside of our existing network build areas," Ms Howard said.

Ms Howard said the pause would have zero impact on existing customers, and the company would have a strengthened commitment to revenue growth.

"As a result the focus of some activities will change, which will impact on TelstraSaturn's operations and staff numbers," she said.

"We are currently consulting with staff and getting their feedback. Staff are our first priority and they will be treated fairly in the process."

Telstra shares closed 8c stronger at $5.41, while Austar finished 1c better at 28c.

AAP


Hallmark claims higher TV penetration in Asia Pacific


From indiantelvision.com

When English movie channel Hallmark launched in Asia, not many industry watchers were confident that it would last out the long haul. The Asian viewer had enough of local fare to watch, apart from the mega blockbuster Hollywood movies on leading movie channels Star Movies and HBO. The viewer would not really get swayed by the 'made for television' movies on Hallmark, went the view.

But a global relaunch last year, better programme packaging, better on-air branding has seen Hallmark gradually making a mark. The Crown Media-owned channel has become an option that viewers are increasingly beginning to snack on.

In a press release, Hallmark claims that the relaunch has also worked in increasing its penetration by 50 per cent in the Asia Pacific region. The channel claims to be available in 18 million homes, up from 12 million last year.

Crown Media International managing director & chief executive (Asia) Terence Yau says this figure includes viewers from "India to Japan, and from China to Australia and New Zealand -- who are currently able to watch the service on seven different feeds and branded blocks."

Yau adds that during the course of the year, the channel worked hard at transforming its scope and feel. It identified viewer segments like children and the mature adult and went after them with innovative programming blocks. All this meant that the whole family could stay glued to the channel during primetime.

Besides subscribers, the Channel is working hard at building on its advertising database through a strong combo of on-air and on-ground packages. To this end, it has taken advantage of its Hallmark Cards chain of retail stores. This is something other C&S channels find hard to match.

40 per cent of the channel's product is exclusive and the programming is an interesting mix of family flicks and mini series. People looking to add spice to their lives tuned into the imaginative science fiction themed series Sliders. The dramatic series Touched by an Angel and Brooklyn South kept the thinking viewer engrossed, while kids had their share of Sesame Street, Clifford, and Calliou.

Hallmark recently bought the seventh season of Touched by an Angel from CBS, a total of 27 new episodes. The channel has also held promotional events in a bid to imprint its unique identity on the viewers' psyche. In February, Bai Ling and Russell Wong who starred in The Monkey King visited Asia for the film's premiere. Hallmark also connected with the crucial women's segment in May by keeping aside a week where films appealing to women were shown. The channel claims that this had an impact in India, Singapore, Philippines and Malalysia.

Hallmark is also forging stronger relationships with cable operators. It invited some of them to South Australia to see how the mini-series McLeod's Daughters was being made. The series is expected to debut on the channel in March 2002.


Timex, Wisden team up for cricket analysis on DD


From http://www.blonnet.com/businessline/catalyst/stories/1901m051.htm

WISDEN, publishers of the famous 138-year-old Wisden Cricketers Almanac, has joined hands with Timex (the sole sponsors) to develop a cricket analysis programme named Wisden 20:20.

The programme will be aired exclusively on Doordarshan whenever an international cricket match is played on Indian grounds.

Set to go on air during the India-England test match beginning on December 3, the show will be anchored by cricket commentator Charu Sharma.

Says Mr Yajurvindra Singh Bilkha, Managing Director, Wisden, The show will be aired twice a day once at the lunch session and then before the close of the day. It will be of 30 minutes duration each. With cricket lovers in India demanding better technology and detailed computer generated statistics, Wisden is delivering a format that combines these requirements with informed and entertaining debate."

Each ball bowled during the match will be analysed in minute detail to provide a comprehensive breakdown of the days inning and have been converted into animated 3D computer graphics. Meanwhile, speaking on the reason behind Timexs collaboration with Wisden, Mr Kapil Kapoor, Managing Director, Timex, says that the tie-up goes well in line with the companys focus on technology and sports.

Wisden which has been present in India for a year now (through Wisden Online and Wisden Data Service) will also be launching a magazine in December this year titled Wisden Asia Cricket.

According to Mr Bilkha, the company is also planning to launch an annual cricket awards for Indian cricketers in the coming year.

However, the final details are still being worked out. The company is also currently in talks with some advertising agencies to promote and create awareness for its Web site and almanac.

For now, the company is focusing on the junior Indian cricket team through ground activities.