Lots of user emails today which is good to see. I emailed Worldnet about the new service that started on I701 (see Satfacts page) looks like it will stay which is fantastic news as the Asiasat 2 service is at a low look angle for viewers in NZ. It seems most won't even need to buy a circular feed as the signals booming in. But has anyone detected a power change in the mux on 3769 RHC? Reports are filtering in Thursday 6 p.m NZ time that Asiasat 3 Fox News has encrypted.
Satfacts page updated
From my Emails & ICQ
From Robert Anthony
Nice pics of sat set up
(Craigs comment, this looks familiar same dish but different mount to mine)
This Email from Worldnet
From: Larry Ewalt <lewalt@IBB.GOV>
Organization: U.S. International Broadcasting Bureau
To: Craig Sutton <email@example.com>
Subject: Re: intelsat 701 180E
Thank you for your interest in WORLDNET. The Intelsat 701 transmissions
are not tests and will continue. You can get satellite information from
our webpage at <http://www.voanews.com/affiliates/>. Under "Broadcast
Info" in the banner at the left of the page you will find links for
"Downlink Info," "Satellite Bulletins," and "Satellite Program
If you are interested in WORLDNET program schedules, you will find them
on our webpage at <http://www.ibb.gov/tvschedule/>. This page is
updated automatically every day at 0700 UTC.
We are currently undergoing a reorganization and this is reflected in
the scattered nature of our webpages which are not yet uniform and
From Andrew Harrison, Vanuatu
RE: 701 Worldnet
Loads well here too with signal 73% and quality 69% on the satcruiser - 3.7 m Mesh.
its a bloody boomer here in the lower south west of WA on my nokia dbox and
a 3m kti c/ku band dish.im not using a circular feed either..it would be
around 60% on the signal level and 39 channels load so its the same as it
was on asaisat 2 ..all the world radio channels i gather..
From Ahmad Mobasheri (NZ)
At 15:45, locked 31 Channels ( One TV,with different Radios ) on 3m mesh
dish and Pheonix 333, in Ak, NZ. Picture is in NTSC format
Strangely, LNB on the dish is not a RHC or LHC. It is H/V lnbf.
It locked on 3886 H, 25000, 3/4, and the signal strength is about 50%.
(Craigs comment from the strength of it it seems this is on the same beam AFRTS uses. If so it should be recieveable on dishs as small as 1M on Cband! most won't even need the correct circular feed!)
From David Knight
B3 12363 6110 V. Golf. Heineken Classic. (probably running all day 16x9)
FoxNews no longer FTA on Asiasat 3
I was using 3980V (sr 28100) for Fox News.
But, Fox news has left the line up.
Reloaded the frequency on my Dynasat POS.
Fox News doesn't appear in the channel list.
Three Channels only now.
From John Mc Dermot 30/01/02
Can someone with an auto SR machine please check the following frequency
on Optus B1 Horizontal:
12476 H - there has been a strong signal here most of the day and is
still there 11:00 pm Melbourne time.
From Bill Richards 30/01/02
Pas 2 4063H Sr 6620 Fec 2/3 Vpid 3160 apid 3120 napsa3 nba feed
From Chris Pickstock 30/01/02
16 Radio Channels currently load on B3, 12564 H (Foxtel/Austar) and are all FTA. I suspect they are shuffling them around and are probably a repeat of the encrypted ones on 12626 H. Lets hope some of the TV channels go FTA for a while as well.
B3, 12363 V, Mediasat, Horse Racing from Clare, SA
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 3836 V New PIDs for LBC Australia and RAI International 1 2307/2308 and 2309/2310. LBC Australia is encrypted again.
PAS 2 169E 3803 V "Occasional feeds", Sr 6000, Fec 3/4.
PAS 8 166E 12410 H "Venus-Eye" has left
Optus B3 156E 12564 H Six more radio channels have started, New APIDs for all radio channels, all now in clear.
Agila 2 146E 3622H "TransVision NTSC-1" "TransVision NTSC-2" "TransVision PAL-1" Testing, Sr 20900, Fec 3/4
Apstar 1A 134E 3745 V "Travel Satellite TV has replaced Hainan TV" , Sr 6930, Fec1/2, Vpid 3260 Apid 2284.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3471 V "Punjab Today" has started on, Sr 3030, Fec 2/3, Vpid 4448 Apid 4195, Asian beam.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3551 H "A test card has started" on Vpid 1537 Apid 1538.
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 V "BVN TV" has replaced SuperSport 5 on , SID 1003,Vpid 521 Apid 649 (encrypted).
Satellite crashing back to Earth
A 3,150 kilogram science satellite will fall from the sky this week, and NASA says a few pieces of metal could hit the Earth anywhere between Florida and Brisbane.
The US space agency said today the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer should make a final plunge to Earth between 2pm and 11pm (AEDT) tommorow.
Officials said the satellite will start breaking apart when it hits the upper edge of the atmosphere, about 80km high. It is expected to complete four or five more 90-minute orbits before its final descent.
Most of the spacecraft is expected to come apart and burn up in the atmosphere during its high-speed fall.
NASA engineers, however, said it was possible that up to nine stainless steel and titanium pieces, weighing up to 45kg, will reach the Earth's surface.
The satellite pieces, if they survive the fall, are expected to land in a debris field stretching some 1,000km under the orbital path. The re-entry point is expected to be determined about 12 hours before the final fall, NASA said.
"The probability of the few ... surviving pieces falling into a populated area and hurting someone is very small," said Ronald E Mahmot, project manager for Space Science Missions at the Goddard Space Flight Centre in Greenbelt, Maryland.
"It is more likely that the small pieces will fall into the ocean or fall harmlessly to the ground."
In 2000, NASA engineers successfully directed a safe de-orbit of the 17-tonne Compton Gamma Ray Observatory, using rockets aboard the satellite to bring it down in a remote part of the Pacific Ocean.
The Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer, however, does not have the on-board rockets needed to direct the re-entry. As a result, it will fall uncontrolled within a belt around the middle of the Earth stretching as far north as Orlando, Florida and as far south as Brisbane, Australia. This belt includes such highly populated areas as Mexico City, Bangkok and Miami.
The largest uncontrolled re-entry by a NASA spacecraft was Skylab, a 70.2 tonne abandoned space station that fell from orbit in 1979. Its debris dropped harmlessly into the Indian Ocean and across a remote section of western Australia.
Launched in 1992, the Extreme Ultraviolet Explorer collected images of more than 1,000 celestial objects detected in the extreme ultraviolet part of the spectrum. The craft was designed to work for three years, but it was operational for eight. The observation program ended last year.
NDS, China Networks Systems ally for digital cable TV services in Taiwan
NDS Group, a News Corporation company, has announced that China Network Systems (CNS), Taiwan's leading cable TV service provider, has selected NDS to provide systems integration consulting and the end-to-end digital broadcasting solutions to power their digital cable TV network upgrade. NDS claims to be the leading provider of conditional access systems and interactive applications for digital TV. CNS is a joint venture between the Star Group which claims to be Asia's leading multi-platform content and service provider, and Koos Group which claims to be Taiwan's leading business conglomerate.
CNS will commence the digital upgrade of cable networks in the second quarter of 2002, with services delivered to more than one million viewers within three years.
An official release states that Taiwan's cable market has the highest penetration of any pay-TV market in the Asia Pacific region. There are nearly five million cable TV subscribers in Taiwan, representing 80 per cent of TV households. CNS claims to be the leading cable TV service provider in Taiwan, with access to more than one million analog cable TV viewers currently.
With a reach of more than one million viewers, the CNS planned digital rollout will be the first wide-scale deployment of digital interactive TV technology in the Asia Pacific.
SAB TV Network to take over SABe TV by end quarter
Sri Adhikari Brothers Television Network (SABTNL) expects to take over SABe TV, the Mauritius-based company, by the end of this quarter. The company has already sought necessary clearances from the Reserve Bank of India.
Markand Adhikari, vice-chairman and managing director of SABTNL, told Business Standard the takeover would result in the company saving costs. “Right now, the costs are high because we are uplinking from Singapore. Once we start uplinking from India, it will result in tremendous cost reduction.”
The company is also negotiating with the Noida-based Essel Shyam for uplinking its SABe TV channel from India. The uplinking is expected to attract local advertisers who could not use this medium due to forex restrictions.
Sorry once again lack of time has resulted in no site update today. Expect something tommorow though as I will get some of it underway tonight. For those that asked the parcel from Digisatnz.tv was the GWE2100 FTA Digital sat receiver that they are selling. I have only had about a couple of hours of playing around with it so far. At the moment I have not quite got the hang of the unit. I will be reviewing it after a week or 2 so watch out for the 1st apsattv.com reciever review coming soon!
Livechat in the chatroom tonight 9pm NZ onwards and 8.30pm Syd time. Not much in the news section. A parcel from Digisat www.digisatnz.tv has turned up at my place. I will be having a look at that when I have a few spare minutes. I am still busy with packing. Thats mostly why there isn't a lot happening with the site today. You just have to put up with that until I get moved in 3 weeks.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Bill Richards
Adventure 1 screenshot off Apstar 2R
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 12315 V "Occasional GlobeCast" feeds on, Sr 5880, Fec 3/4, North East Asian beam.
Agila 2 146E 3864 H "Net 25" has left
Koreasat 2 113E 12575 HYoon Sat 1 (clear) and Yoon Sat 2 have started on, Sr 5228, FEC 7/8, SIDs 1-2, PIDs 257/258-513/514.
Watching the watchdog in pay TV
THE competition regulator has again become the focus of media attention as it undertakes informal inquiries that may determine the future of battling regional pay TV group Austar.
Last week's news of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission's moves suggests Austar and its proposed partner Singtel/Optus have requested an informal clearance of some form of merger or acquisition plan.
This move is nothing new, seen most recently in the failed attempt by Independent Print Media Group to backdoor list through rival printer PMP.
The ACCC twice indicated to IPMG it wouldn't approve the merger, prompting IPMG to dump its plan.
The one benefit for the ACCC this time around is that it has plenty of experience in the pay TV market, having investigated and then denied the 1994 merger proposal between Foxtel and the now defunct Australis Media.
Then the issue came down to telephony, as Optus threatened to stop rolling out its cable (which would provide telephony competition to Telstra) if the merger proceeded.
The ACCC is back in the pay TV stomping ground and is again looking at whether a bid for Austar would reduce telephony competition.
But unlike the Australis situation, Austar's future is becoming highly political.
The Government will not want to see the only pay TV provider in the bush fail.
And since Australis's collapse the internet has become a force, resulting in the ACCC putting that market under the microscope.
Both Optus and Austar are internet service providers (ISPs), although Optus operates in metropolitan markets and Austar mostly in the regions.
Both also have mobile telephony services, with Optus a service provider and Austar a reseller.
To date, the only companies to admit speaking to the ACCC about Austar are the Seven Network (which fears consolidation may make it more difficult for its C7 sports channel to get on to a delivery system) and Nine and Ten, which may also wish to on-sell their local programs to a pay TV company.
Regional Victorian pay TV and internet operator Neighbourhood Cable also had concerns for pay TV competition, but did not consider Austar a threat in internet access.
Unsurprisingly quiet is Foxtel, 25 per cent owned by The Australian's owner, News Limited, as it would no doubt hope that if an Austar-Optus deal falls over on anything other than competition grounds it would be the next bidder for Austar.
But probably of more interest to the ACCC are the opinions of content suppliers and customers rather than Austar's competitors.
Another factor would be whether Optus and Austar have plans to merge or for one to simply manage the other's business.
Those options have differing competition consequences. For example, if Singtel were to manage Austar, the agreements covering those businesses would be subject to the tricky and related competition issues of price fixing and market sharing.
From that perspective, it would be easier for one company to simply buy or merge with the other. In that case Singtel could inject cash to Austar's small ISP and telephony businesses and provide a better competitor to Telstra.
Or given the huge losses it has already suffered on its Optus purchase, Singtel may wish to sell those assets and focus on Austar's pay TV business. If an informal clearance has been requested, the process should take three to four weeks.
Meetings are held and the ACCC writes an internal paper, which is discussed by the mergers panel and may go to the full commission for discussion.
If the companies have requested confidentiality, the document is unlikely to see the light of day.
Fortunately for Austar, the ACCC is not its only option as there is the increasingly remote chance the Commonwealth Bank will agree to the rollover of its $400 million loan, giving Austar some breathing space.
If not, it will be relying on the ACCC. History would suggest that in the media industry, that's not a good bet. Or maybe times have changed?
Quite a lot of news items the best being, the email I had from Radio NZ. I will be emailing others and getting their responses this week. Hopefully others will follow Radio NZ's lead in going FTA via Sky.
History for December added (what do you mean its almost February!)
From my Emails & ICQ
My email I sent to Radio NZ this afternoonSubject:Radio, via FTA satellite
Rather than make some listeners pay SKY $4 a week (making it a pay service) you could tell
Sky to broadcast your services FTA just as TVNZ is doing. The price of digital
FTA satellite receivers has dropped so much now that they are easily affordable. For example
Any of those will sell you a suitable receiver for under $300
By switching your signal to a FTA format inside Skys transponder the
same as TVNZ have arranged for there services. Your listeners in remote
areas would not be forced to pay if they want to listen to your stations.
Surely you want to be available to as many NZ listeners as possible?
I have talked to others transmitting via Sky and they are interested in
going FTA. Also if you did not know TVNZ have been testing their own
FTA service also on another transponder on Optus B1 (this is separate to the
FTA service inside Sky's transponder) it would be a huge boost for
digital TV/Radio in NZ if you were to ask them to carry National Radio and
Concert FM . In fact it may be a better option than telling Sky to
unencrypt your signal.
I have been contacting other radio stations that broadcast via Sky
several are interested in going FTA to take advantage of the now growing market
of FTA satellite viewers/listeners.
From Matthew Finn
You'll be pleased to know that just a couple of weeks I wrote to Sky
asking that the RNZ signals be unencrypted. We had discussions with them
prior to Christmas and we understand that they have no objection to
free-to-air services on their platform being unencrypted so I would
expect this to happen quite soon.
At this stage we won't pursue the option to also be on the TVNZ system
until we know more about their future plans. As I understand it, there's
no real advantage over being on Sky unencrypted is there? Plus, being on
Sky means we are available in a user-friendly way to all their satellite
Broadcast Infrastructure Manager
Radio New Zealand Ltd
P.O. Box 123
Ph: +64 4 474 1844
Fax: + 64 4 474 1886
Mob: 027 454 6959
(Craigs comment, Great news for installers and viewers/listeners of FTA in NZ! you can now add these as "Coming Soon FTA" I have replied back suggesting the advantage if they went with TVNZ is they would have more space and they could possibly increase the audio of both services up to 384kbit. I think at the moment through Sky it's either at 160 or 192kbit. Abc Australia uses 256kbit and to me sounds better and I don't have any fancy audio system just the tv speakers. I suggested to them Audiophiles want the maximum quality of audio and possibly at the moment the quality is not as best as they could be! Let's see what happens)
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 3836 V "LBC Australia" is fta
PAS 2 169E 4090 V "Rainbow Channel 1-2" have left
PAS 2 169E 12732 V "Rainbow Channel 1 and Channel X" have left . They are not encrypted.
PAS 2 169E 12732 V "CTS" is still fta.
PAS 2 169E 12315 H "GlobeCast test card" has started, Sr 5881, Fec 3/4, SID 7, PIDs 52/53, Chinese beam.
PAS 8 166E 3880 V "ABS-CBN Music Radio WRR 101.9" has started on, SID 6, PIDs 1622.
Koreasat 2 113E 12530 H New FEC for the mux 3/4.
Koreasat 2 113E 12617 H "The two test cards have left".
Koreasat 2 113E 12575 H "Yoon Sat" has left
Insat 2C 93.5E 4140 H New PIDs for DD 11 - Gujarati on : 308/256.
Insat 2E 83E 3525 V "Maa TV and Win TV" have started testing on PIDs 289/290 and 305/306, zone beam.
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Uttar Pradesh, ETV Madhya Pradesh, ETV Rajasthan and ETV Bihar" have started regular transmissions on , SIDs 1-4, PIDs 1160/1120-1460/1420, zone beam.
Insat 2E 83E 4005 V "ETV Gujarati" has started regular transmissions on ,, SID 6, PIDs 1660/1620, wide beam.
Insat 2E 83E 4005 V "ETV Oriya" has started regular transmissions, SID 7, PIDs 1760/1720, wide beam.
Insat 2E 83E 4040 V "The test card" has left analog.
PAS 10 68.5E 4034 V "DD Bharathi has replaced DD News" on, SID 1, PIDs 512/650.
PAS 10 68.5E 4154 V "DD Bharathi has replaced DD News" Analog
Intelsat 902 62E 4003 L "Radio Mojahed" has started testing on, APID 257.
Auckland station to have key role with US Navy
Thanks to Mike for taking the picture
The Stratos land earth station in Auckland will play a key role in the satellite communication specialist's new $US137 million ($324 million) contract with the United States Navy.
Stratos' Asia Pacific vice-president, Michael Smith, said the 12-person team at Albany had been part of the bidding process and would be involved in boosting the capacity of their station and managing the global network.
"The Auckland dish provides cover from the eastern Mediterranean over to the western coast of continental United States, so for this piece of business it's the linchpin in our global coverage," Mr Smith said.
He said the high military and media activity surrounding the war in Afghanistan meant Auckland "is a very busy place for us right now".
The land earth station now channels signals from US Navy ships in the Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf off the satellites and on to terrestrial telephone networks.
The new contract, which was tendered before the terrorist attacks on September 11, is to provide the US Navy's Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (Spawar) with two-way satellite bandwidth for use with Inmarsat B systems aboard ships worldwide.
The estimated value of the contract is $US137 million over five years, although in unusual circumstances, such as a prolonged war, the value could rise to a maximum of $US537 million.
Stratos will provide Inmarsat connectivity to support processing the Navy's Secure Telephone Unit version III calls, data calls, official telephone lines and unofficial voice for Afloat Personal Telecommunications Service.
It will need to provide up to 200 Inmarsat lease channels to support Inmarsat B high speed data transmission services of up to 128 kbps a channel, enough for video-conferencing if required.
It will also provide terrestrial connectivity between its land earth stations and Navy points of presence in Wahiawa (Hawaii), Norfolk (Virginia), Naples and Bahrain.
Toronto-based Stratos, which bought the Auckland LES as part of its acquisition of British Telecom's worldwide satellite facilities, is the fastest-growing technology company on the Canadian stock exchange.
Fourth-quarter results come out next week. In the first three quarters, Stratos reported revenue of $US208 million, up $US125 million from the same period in 2000.
Mr Smith said Stratos now had sufficient bulk and experience in remote communications of all kinds to be fiercely competitive in price, service and reliability. It is one of five companies which dominate the satellite communications market.
Stratos has communication covered
From nzherald.co.nz (note this article is 7 months old)
Michael Smith explains why one of the two satellite dishes at the Albany Land Earth Station in North Shore City (AUCKLAND , NZ) is almost touching the ground.
"It's looking at a bird over the Indian Ocean," says the Asia Pacific managing director of satellite communications company Stratos.
The bird in question is an Inmarsat satellite 38,000km above the Equator at longitude 109 east, its footprint a sweep from the Mediterranean to the central Pacific.
That means it is passing over one of the hottest spots in the world for military and civil communications, Afghanistan.
The pictures seen on CNN and other news networks as likely as not have been sent out of the war zone as high-speed data from an Inmarsat phone, come back to Earth at the North Shore facility and been passed by the terrestrial telecoms network to the United States.
High-speed data on Inmarsat runs at about $US6 a minute, compared to $US2 for voice.
The military, too, is a big user of commercial satellites. The US Navy is a significant customer of Stratos, as a bank of dedicated modems in a corner of the data centre testifies.
Special forces, including perhaps New Zealand SAS troops, are calling in bomb strikes using Iridium phones connected to a GPS (global positioning satellite) receiver, range-finding binoculars and a Pocket PC in a rugged case to encrypt signals and process data.
It's part of a system called Jedi (joint expedition digital information.)
The field command centre version replaced the Pocket PC with a laptop running Windows CE.
Iridium phones run off a different network of low earth orbit satellites unconnected with the Albany facility.
Stratos is one of 16 resellers of services on the Iridium network, which is undergoing a massive relaunch.
Iridium was bought by a consortium of private investors for $US25 million after its original backers burned through $US8 billion getting the constellation of low-earth-orbit satellite operations.
Iridium phones can be used anywhere you can see the sky, making them ideal for remote communications.
Stratos is offering Iridium calls costing $US1.50 a minute to a land line or 50USc to another Iridium phone, compared to the original price of up to $14 a minute.
The new business, whose owners include Quadrant Australia, is underpinned by a $US3 million-a-month contract with the US military to provide 20,000 terminals.
Stratos started out in St John's, Newfoundland, providing marine radio services. It has grown rapidly by acquisition, and in September was top of the list of the 50 fastest-growing Canadian technology companies, with revenue growth between 1996 and last year of 73,000 per cent.
As well as Inmarsat and Iridium, it handles Intelsat, VSAT and other communications technologies. It also owns telephone companies in Texas and Louisiana which are part of its communications network servicing 7769.9 sq km of oil fields in the Gulf of Mexico.
%Mr Smith said that in this part of the world Stratos is looking at building a similar communications network to service companies looking for oil below the North West Shelf off Australia, through to Timor and on towards Thailand.
%"The aim of the company is to provide wireless communications to customers in remote locations," Mr Smith said.
"That means we have lots of customers in the maritime industry, in oil and gas, aeronautical, the military, recreational users."
Stratos recently bought the satellite business of British Telecom, which included the Albany facility, for $US350 million, giving it its own land network for global coverage.
"BT was the third largest Inmarsat provider as well as having a lot of value- added services."
Mr Smith said Stratos is providing free satellite air time for the New Zealand teams taking part in the Telecom Transatlantic Rowing challenge, enabling them to keep in touch during their race across the Atlantic Ocean.
Space Systems/Loral Remains Committed to Asia-Pacific Market
In the aftermath of Loral settling a U.S. Justice Department China export probe for a reported $14 million, Satnews Asia associate editor, Virgil Labrador interviewed the new President of Space Systems/Loral Asia-Pacific, Dr. Paul R. Davis at the recently-concluded PTC 2002 in Hawaii. Dr. Davis was previously Vice-President of marketing and sales of SS/L for Asia and Africa and prior to that he spent 7 years at Hughes Space and Communications. He also has a 20-year stint at the U.S. Air Force, retiring in 1985 as a colonel. Daniel E. Collins, SS/L's senior vice-president of worldwide marketing ad sales joined the interview.
Q. SS/L signed MBSAT and IPSTAR in 2001. What does this indicate for SS/L? What other opportunities do you see in the region?
Dr. Paul Davis (P.D.). We certainly confirm that the signing of MBSAT and IPSTAR is evidence of our continuing commitment to the Asia-Pacific region. We intend to be here. If we look ahead of the market in the next couple of years, we see several opportunities that keep us happy. We see at least three opportunities in Japan. There is an ongoing procurement program in Indonesia. People in Vietnam and Laos are talking about a new satellite. The Malaysians are also talking about an additional satellite and so are the Australians as well as the Koreans. So if you add it all up there will be more than half a dozen opportunities in the Asia-Pacific market in the next 2 years.
Q. What kind of satellites are these and what type of services are they going to provide?
P.D. These will be mostly BSS satellites, except for Korea, which is considering a joint commercial and military satellite…sort of in the mold of Optus C-1. There is also the potential of another MBSAT and another IPSTAR.
Q. What's your market share in Asia?
P.D. Well, there were two satellite contracts awarded in Asia in 2001 and we won both of them.
Q. How has the Asian satellite market been affected by 9/11?
P.D. Much of what's affecting the Asian satellite market is a combination of change in leadership in the satellite companies and currency fluctuations. But we don’t necessarily see these issues negatively. Each case provides opportunities, such as the change in leadership of Optus with the takeover of Singtel.
iPSTAR-1, being built for Shin Satellite of Thailand, will provide direct-to-desktop, last-mile services, including new multimedia and data services to customers in Asia, India, and Australia. The iPSTAR-1 satellite is scheduled to begin service in early 2003.
Q. How does the Asia-Pacific market figure in relation to your global marketing efforts?
Daniel E. Collins (D.C.) Of our current backlog of 25 satellites, six are for the Asian market or about 25 percent. Asia has been an important market for us for almost our entire existence. We have a long-term commitment to the Japanese market -- we almost started our satellite business in the Japanese market 30 years ago and we continue to consider that as an important market.
During the Asian downturn of '97-'98, we continued to pay every bit as much attention to the Asian market and Asian customers as we did before since we regard Asia as a long-term market. We have good relations with our Asian clients.
Q. What advantages do you have to offer your customers vis a vis your competitors?
P.D. We manufacture a superior product--that's a natural advantage. To sell we have to have a relationship and that's what we are always trying to develop. We also try to stay close enough to our customers to understand exactly what they need so that we could design a satellite that fits those needs. We even help them execute their business plans. We put much thought and creativity in what our customers are trying to do and build the product accordingly.
Q. There has been some consolidation among satellite operators globally. Do you se this happening as well to satellite manufacturers?
D.C. The global market in general is slowing down. It's slowed down considerably in the last half of 2001 and we expect this to continue in most of 2002. We expect a 25% decline in satellite demand, so it will be a challenging marketplace for us.
As far as consolidation among customers--the owner-operators have changed the complexion of the marketplace in that we see fewer regular customers with 2 to 3 satellites. We now see more customers with larger fleets but there will still be few start-ups.
I think everyone with a finger on the manufacturing side of the satellite industry expects that there will be consolidation because of how fiercely competitive the industry has become. Among the top five manufacturers, most of then have almost doubled their capacity and already approaching three times the actual demand. The situation is begging for rationalization.
Q. What are your immediate plans for the Asia-Pacific market?
P.D. What I intend to do is continue the successful movement that Loral has established in the last 7 to 8 years with an executive resident in Asia. Initially I will be based in the West Coast (of the US) and the challenge is to follow and achieve at least as good a performance as my predecessors.
We will also continue our presence in Japan and other countries and in the next 2 to 3 years you may see us broaden our representation in Southeast Asia, Australia and China.
Q. What is your view of the Chinese market?
P.D. My view of that market is that it is exciting. I think in the next 3 to 5 years there will be a Direct Broadcast Satellite system put up in China. It's not clear whether it will be competitively procured or whether it will be built domestically. We hope that there will be a truly competitive element to it and that we will be able to participate.
Q. What role will you play in the Chinese market?
P.D. We are going to play a role as the market and as our government will allow it. We will obey the proper constraints as we always have.
Q. Are you optimistic about the Asia market?
P.D. We are being very realistic and part of that realism is a proper degree of optimism.
Dr. Paul Davis can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and Daniel Collins can be reached at email@example.com
China Unveils 2002 Space Plans; Set to Launch 10 Satellites, Rockets in 2002
China's will send "Fengyun 1-D," into orbit before June 2002 using a Chinese-made Long March 4 rocket.
China intends to push ahead with the launch of about 10 satellites, rockets and spacecraft this year, a third of the number it plans to launch in the next four years.
China will begin its launch year with the launch of weather satellite Fengyun 1-D in the first half as part of the new missions, according to the Shanghai Aerospace Administration. A Long March 4 rocket will be used to loft Fengyun 1-D into orbit. The satellite will be involved in medium- and long-term weather forecasting, including monitoring conditions for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
The 10 launches are part of an overall program that will see China launch 30 non-military satellites in the next four years to accelerate the development of its space industry. Xu Fuxiang, head of the Chinese Research Institute of Space Technology (CRIST), said the satellites would be used for telecommunications, weather forecasting, environmental protection and navigation. China has successfully developed and launched 48 satellites with a success rate of 90 percent, according to the state run Xinhua news agency.
In 2000, China announced its intention to send a manned spacecraft into earth orbit within the decade. It has launched two Shenzhou spacecraft as part of this effort with a third, called Shenzhou 3, scheduled by the first quarter of 2002. Shenzhou 2 was successfully recovered in early 2001 following the maiden experimental space flight in late 1999. China will also carry out a number of unmanned flights to prepare for manned flights.
China will launch an unmanned Shenzhou 3 spacecraft in preparation for a manned space flight tentatively scheduled for 2003. Industry sources said Shenzhou 3 would be launched from the Jiuquan Space Center in China's northwest Gansu province by a Long March 2F carrier rocket. Shenzhou 3, which resembles the Soyuz spacecraft of the former Soviet Union, is expected to test life support and re-entry systems for a manned mission. Shenzhou spacecraft can carry two "yuhanghuans" or astronauts.
Western analysts believe a successful Shenzhou 3 mission could pave the way for China's first manned flight by as early as 2003. Earlier reports predicted a manned Chinese mission before 2005. China's announced ambition as a space power is to become the second nation to put a man on the moon, probably by the next decade, and to build a space station to rival the International Space Station.
HK Yes Television To Go It Alone
Yes Television Asia vowed to go it alone in launching its pay-TV service after being unceremoniously dumped by erstwhile partner, CLP Telecommunications Ltd, only a month before the new service was to debut.
CLP Telecommunications, a unit of electric utility CLP Holdings Ltd, backed out of the planned joint venture pay TV project six months after shaking hands on the deal with Yes TV. CLP Telecom spokesman Benjamin Yuen, however, noted that there was never a contract or an agreement signed by both companies. He said CLP believed pay TV was still very attractive and innovative “but now isn't the right climate. The CLP Group's investment strategy goes for a more low-risk, conservative approach”. CLP Telecom will now concentrate on its two remaining businesses: a dedicated high capacity fiber optic line to mainland China providing international private leased circuits and its broadband Internet service named Oxygen.
CLP Telecom's hasty retreat leaves Yes Television to go it alone against longtime incumbent cable TV operator i-Cable Communications and two other pay TV licenses holders. It also deals another body blow to Hong Kong's hopes of developing a competitive pay-TV market. Earlier, Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting said it would delay launching its pay TV service until September after losing its potential partner, Malaysia-based Astro Broadcasting. Galaxy is a unit of Hong Kong's dominant free-to-air broadcaster Television Broadcasts Ltd.
The remaining pay TV license holder, Pacific Digital Media, won permission from the Hong Kong Broadcasting Authority this month to postpone its service rollout for a year. Pacific will offer just two channels (a religion channel and an entertainment channel) instead of the planned 20 channels. Rupert Murdoch's Star Group and Hong Kong Network TV Ltd, a unit of local Internet firm Sino-i.com Ltd, both won licenses in 2000 to compete against i-Cable Communications but chose to back out of the contest.
Yes TV chairman and chief executive Thomas Kressner said the company was disappointed and surprised by CLP Telecom's decision. He emphasized that his company remained enthusiastic about the potential of the Hong Kong market and that is was resuming its search for a partner company with local resources and consumer brand recognition. Yes TV is majority owned by its British parent, Yes Television Plc. Kressner said Yes TV was standing by its pledge to spend HK$30-$50 million on a six-to-12 month commercial trial among Hong Kong’s 2 million households beginning February 22. He estimated that Yes TV would need roughly 30,000-40,000 households to break even. Yes TV's service will be carried via broadband lines leased from telecoms carrier, Pacific Century CyberWorks, for roughly HK$250 per month. It plans to rely on multiple revenue streams including broadcast TV, video-on-demand, e-mail and Internet service all delivered to a set-top box.
Analysts, however, said Hong Kong was too small a market for viable competition, although its density and the fact that most people live in big apartment blocks offer cost advantages. One analyst said the market was too big for one and too small for two pay TV operators.
Murdoch's Star Sets Name for New China Channel
Star Group Ltd will soon launch “Starry Sky Satellite TV,” a new 24-hour Mandarin-language channel targeting Guangdong, China’s richest province, and southern China.
Star Group is the Asian satellite broadcast unit of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation. “Xing Kong Wei Shi,” the Mandarin Chinese name of the new channel, will be launched in the first half of this year on the Guangdong Cable TV Network. It will not carry news but will only air entertainment programming.
In December 2001, Star won rights to launch an entertainment channel in Guangdong after similar rights were granted in October to rival AOL Time Warner. In exchange, both media giants will carry official China state programming in a few U.S. cities.
Starry Sky Satellite TV will air programs from CCTV-9, a unit of China's state-run broadcaster, in the US 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.
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.
Last December, 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.
STM's Broadband System Selected by New Chinese Service Provider
STM Wireless, Inc., a worldwide supplier of VSAT networks for data and telephony applications, has deployed a US$1.3 million broadband network ordered by China Transport & Telecommunication Broadband Network Service Co., Ltd. (CTTNet).
The CTTNet system will start commercial service this month, using Ku-Band transponders on Sinosat, which is owned and operated by China Aerospace Corporation, the former Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense, along with the People's Bank of China and the Shanghai Municipal Government. Sinosat 1 is a French Alcatel Space SB-3000 platform. The satellite carries 24 C-band and 14 Ku-band transponders, covering China and Asia-Pacific regions, providing telecommunications, data transmission and TV broadcasting for its customers within its footprint. Sinosat 1 was launched successfully in July 1998.
The inauguration in Beijing was attended by several senior members of leading Chinese public institutions and members of China's Ministry of Transport and Communication (MTC), a joint venture partner in CTTNet. CTTNet intends to become one of China’s leading providers of public Internet access and private IP network solutions. CTTNet will initially focus on several organizations affiliated with the founding partners who have already committed to the use of CTTNet's services and will then gradually expand into other market segments.
CTTNet said it selected STM for the supply of its VSAT platform after an exhaustive evaluation of the industry and its strategic goals to become a leading service provider in a very short time span. The selection of STM was based on the breadth of their VSAT offering, along with their commitment to continual improvements in their product lines.
Emil Youssefzadeh, STM's Chief Executive Officer, said that winning the CTTNet project was one of its most notable accomplishments to date in penetrating the Chinese VSAT market. “Considering the background and affiliations of CTTNet, we have reasonable expectations that this project will allow STM to further expand its presence and sales throughout China, which still has a large potential for growth,” said Youssefzadeh.
Based in California, STM Wireless is a VSAT network system provider for IP-based networking, telephony and bandwidth on demand data applications. STM has a local and regional sales presence in France, Thailand, Indonesia, China and South America, which support an expanding number of in-country sales representatives throughout the world.
ETV launches six channels, DD Bharati goes on air
Ramoji Rao-controlled ETV has made its foray into north-India, with the launch of six new channels today.
The new state-wise channels would cover Gujarat, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Orissa.
h of these channels offers top-quality programmes in the local idiom with a local flavour. In addition, each channel offers regular news bulletins focussing exclusively on that state,” a company official said.
With the launch, ETV now has 11 channels covering different parts of the country. The south Indian media conglomerate, which also owns the Newstime daily, already had state-wise channels covering Andhra Pradesh, West Bengal, Maharashtra and Karnataka, besides an Urdu channel.
Meanwhile, Prasar Bharati Corporation’s latest offering, DD Bharati, too went on air on the Republic Day.
Although the new channel from the public broadcaster’s stable received lukewarm response from cable operators, the government is banking on the “must carry clause” and a high-voltage advertising campaign to make DD Bharati a success.
DD Bharati is aimed as a culture, youth and healthcare channel, while DD News was a dedicated news and current affiars channel which failed to enthuse the viewers and had to be wound up.
T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 04/2002 27 January 2002 -
A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by TELE-satellite International
Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition (Only items of local interest)
A S I A
DISCOVERY NETWORK JOINS ORBIT TV LINE-UP
Digital satellite operator Orbit has signed a carriage deal with Discovery
Networks Europe which will see Animal Planet, a wildlife-themed channel jointly
owned by the BBC and DNE outside the UK, added to the programme line-up. Last
week, the 11 channels in the Star Select package moved exclusively to Orbit’s
DTH rival, Arab Digital Distribution, which is merging the Star channels with
its three existing pay-TV packages: Al Awael (Arabic), FirstNet (English) and
Pehla (South Asian). In response to the loss of the Star movie channels, the
Rome-based DTH operator Orbit recently signed a deal with MGM Networks for a
new 24-hour movie channel. It is also lining up further movie offerings, two
new Arabic channels, plus new sports and kids’ channels.
LOSSES UP AT AUSTAR
Pay-TV provider Austar says it will become cash-flow positive in 2002 and that
cuts to operating costs carried out late last year will reduce net losses for
2001. Austar, which has around 450,000 subscribers, said it would post an
earnings loss, before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, of $43.5
million for last year, up from $36.9 million in 2000. Overall, 2002 losses are
set to reach $171.5 million, once depreciation and amortisation costs are
factored in. The company is still renegotiating a $200 million bank loan
facility which was due to have been settled by December 31. Austar also
confirmed it was still in discussions with third-ranked pay-TV platform Optus
OPTUS BUYS NATIONAL RUGBY RIGHTS
Optus has paid Fox Sports A$17 million for the rights to broadcast national
rugby league games, according to local reports. The pay-TV operator is also
thought to have set a A$10 million for seeking rights to Foxtel’s Australian
Football League channel. Both rugby and football rights are held by leading
pay-TV operator Foxtel.
CHINA - HONG KONG
YES TV LOSES IMPORTANT BACKER
Yes Television Asia (YTA), the Hong Kong arm of UK video-on-demand operator Yes
Television, has lost the backing of local utilities giant CLP Holdings, only
weeks before launching commercial trials in Hong Kong. YTA was to have become a
wholly owned subsidiary of a joint venture in which CLP held 75% and Yes the
rest. However CLP has decided to withdraw from the pay-TV sector following a
report which throws doubts on its profitability. Yes chairman and CEO, Thomas
Kressner, said the company is looking for a new Hong Kong partner, but that it
still plans to go ahead with trials next month. The original shareholding
structure of YTA, in which Yes Television holds 90% and Hong Kong’s Shaw Media
10%, remains intact.
STAR TO LAUNCH NEW ENTERTAINMENT CHANNEL
Star Group has announced its new entertainment channel to be available in
southern China would be named Xing Kong Wei Shi, or Starry Sky Satellite TV.
Star will distribute 24-hour entertainment programming, specially designed for
Chinese viewers, in Guangdong province through cable in early 2002, according
to an agreement signed by Star with China Central Television (CCTV), its
subsidiary China International Television Corp. and Guangdong Cable TV Networks
Co. last month. This was the first time that China had allowed the cable
transmission of foreign TV programming, currently available only in big hotels,
some education institutions and government agencies, to a wider audience. In
return for the permission, Star’s sister network in the United States, Fox
Cable Network Group, will distribute CCTV’s English-news channelCCTV-9--in
North America. Currently, guests in hotels rated three stars and above are able
to watch seven channels transmitted by Star, including Phoenix Chinese, ESPN,
Star Sports, Channel [V], Star Movies, National Geographic and Phoenix Movies.
PLAT ONE TO LAUNCH DIGITAL BROADCASTING SERVICE
Plat One Corp. said on January 23 it plans to launch a next-generation
communications satellite-based digital broadcasting service on March 1.
Tokyo-based Plat One undertakes so-called platform businesses related to CS
broadcasting, such as fee collection, sales promotions and other tasks on
behalf of multichannel broadcasters. The company is owned by trader Mitsubishi
Corp., Nippon Television Network Corp. and satellite broadcaster WOWOW Inc.
Seven companies will provide programs via Plat One’s platform, including
broadcasting units of the three companies and Japan MediArk Co., partly owned
by news agency Jiji Press Ltd. Plat One has set a membership fee of Y2,000,
with a monthly basic charge of Y300. Users will pay viewing fees for each
channel separately. Plat One hopes to sign up some one million subscribers
within three years, company officials said.
HEAVY LOSSES FOR CANWEST TV CHANNELS
Canadian-owned TV3 and TV4 have seen the first tangible signs of a turnaround
after a year of heavy losses. The channels made a modest profit of $C718,000
for the three months ending November 30, 2001, double the $C345,000 profit
recorded in the same period a year earlier. Revenue was $C18.3 million,
compared with $C16.9 million in the November 2000 quarter. The figures were
released by CanWest NZ’s parent company, CanWest Global Communications, for the
first quarter of the company’s financial year.
KDSB TO LAUNCH REAL TIME NEWS SERVICE
The Korea Digital Satellite Broadcasting [KDSB], set to launch its
fully-fledged SkyLife service in March, will officially begin transmitting
Yonhap News articles on a real time basis in October. The Yonhap News Agency
and the satellite broadcaster signed a contract for the alliance on January 23.
Under the contract, Yonhap is expected to firm up its position as a contents
provider of satellite broadcasting while the KDSB will establish a footing in
the data broadcasting field. Viewers will be able to read Yonhap stories in
Korean and English and have access to photographs from its foreign and domestic
outlets from October after five months of test-run procedures. At the initial
stage, the service, tentatively named “Skytouch-Yonhap News real-time service”,
will be provided in the form of text, photos and graphics, but will later be
expanded to include video clips.
MTV TO LAUNCH LOCAL TV CHANNEL
MTV Asia has signed a joint venture deal with Thai music programming specialist
Ten Music Television (TMT) to launch MTV Thailand. The channel will air via
United Broadcasting Corporation, following a renewal of a distribution deal
with UBC concluded last November. The 24-hour channel will include locally
produced shows with more Thai-language programming to be added to the schedule
over the next year. MTV Thailand extends MTV Asia’s ongoing localisation
initiatives across the continent, which so far has led to the creation of MTV
Southeast Asia, MTV Philippines, MTV India, MTV China, MTV Korea and MTV
Nothing to say up here today.
From my Emails & ICQ
B1 12357 V SR 6110 "Mediasat, GOLF"
B1 12367 V SR 6110 "Astranlinks SNG" "Big dayout 2002" channelv
B3, 12407 V Reported FTA for a short time 2:45Pm
From Ahmad Mobasheri 25/01/02
LBC ( Lebanon) in Middle mux, 3836/7 , SR 13331, Fec 3/4, off Pas2 is
FTA at 19:00hrs NZ time.
From Chris Pickstock 25/01/02
B1, 12356 V, Sr 6110. Foxsport feed of "The Johnny Walker Classic" from Perth in 16:9 format. Channel loads as Mediasat and signal is super strong.
From Bill Richards 24/01/02
8 p.m Syd time
Pas 2 4063 H Sr 6620 3/4 Vpid 3160 Apid 3120 sid 301 "NBA"
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E "Star Sports has left 4090 V and 12732 V", replaced by a test card.
PAS 2 169E 3901 H "ABC Asia Pacific and Radio Australia" have started on,SID 4, PIDs 1460/1420 and 1422.
PAS 2 169E 3901 H A test card has started on SID 1, PIDs 1160/1120.
PAS 2 169E 3901 H Bloomberg Radio has started on SID 6, APID 1622.
PAS 2 169E 12606 H "Radyo Patrol, Radio Romance and REE" have left
PAS 2 169E 12732 V "CTS, Rainbow Channel 1 and Channel X" are now encrypted.
PAS 8 166E 12526 H All TV channels in the TARBS mux are encrypted again.
Optus B1 160E 12356 V Occasional feeds, Sr 6110.
Optus B3 156E 12313 H "FYI" is encrypted again.
Agila 2 146E 3711 H "ABC 5" is now encrypted, new SID: 5.
Koreasat 2 113E 12530 H A new mux has started on, Sr 26000, Fec 5/6, SIDs 1-10, line-up: AMC, Hyundai-Kia Channel, National Geographic Channel, Home Shopping, BYS, MNB, test cards and occasional feeds.
Koreasat 2 113E 12330 H "CNN International Asia, MTV Korea, C3 TV (clear), OCN and DirecPC" are back on ,enc., SIDs 20501-20505, PIDs 1200/1201-1500/1501.
Koreasat 2 113E 12617 H "CHK, DNC and two test cards" have started Sr 12300, Fec 3/4, SIDs 2-5.
Telkom 1 108E 4065 H "Lativi" has started, Sr 6000, Fec3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256.
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H "MTV Asia and TV 5 Asie" have started, PIDs 49/69 and 65/68.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 3880 H "Granada UK TV" has left
Insat 2C 93.5E 3819 H "DD 9 - Karnataka" has started, Sr 5000, Fec 3/4, PIDs 308/256, zone beam.
Insat 2C 93.5E 3889 H "DD 10 - Maharashtra" has started, Sr 5000, Fec 3/4, PIDs 308/256, zone beam.
Insat 2C 93.5E 4140 H "DD 11 - Gujurati has" started, Sr 5000, Fec 3/4, PIDs 1211/1110, zone beam.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "Savoir Knowledge Channel and STV-MTV" are encrypted again.
Insat 2E 83E 3525 V "Win TV" test card has started on , PIDs 305/306.
DD Bharati goes on air on Jan 26
Ordinarily, the claims of a new channel “like no other” should generate some excitement. However, when good old Doordarshan (DD) broadcasts such claims, one should forgive its audience for eyeing them with wariness, if not weariness, given the performance track record of its existing channels.
That DD’s new 24-hour edutainment satellite channel DD Bharati will be like no other is a given. The channel brings together three broad programming bands on health and fitness, a kiddies slot and a culture and heritage slot. The unique selling proposition of the channel is that all these programmes will be India-centric. “It will be the showcase of India in your living room,” says the spokesperson.
The kick-off event of the channel, fittingly scheduled on January 26, 2002, will be a live broadcast of the 3-hour inaugural function which will feature artistes like flute maestro Hari Prasad Chaurasia, violinist L Subramanium, singers Kavita Krishnamurthi, Begum Parveen Sultana and the Colonial Cousins.
Thereafter will begin the broadcast of programmes of which at least 40 per cent have been produced in-house. External contributors include TMG, the technology channel, the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, National Films Development Corporation, Indira Gandhi National Open University and Transtel of Germany. Discovery Channel will also provide software on travel, tourism and kids.
The channel is in dialogue with Pentamedia Graphics to source animated versions of Indian classics and folktales for the kiddies slot. Pharmaceutical companies like Morepen Laboratories and even some reputed hospitals are keen to air health-related shows on the channel.
Will this smorgasboard of programmes be able to generate and sustain viewer interest? Well, confidence levels aren’t exactly high if one considers that, instead of relying on audience demand to push the channel into a larger number of homes, plans are to make it mandatory for cable operators in the northern belt to beam the free-to-air channel.
The birth of DD Bharati will also mean curtains for DD News, the 24-hour news channel that failed to meet its ambitious programming and commercial objectives.
DD unveils edutainment channel Bharati tomorrow
The grande dame of Indian broadcasting is donning a new avatar from tomorrow.
The launch of DD Bharati, the sleeker version of good old Doordarshan, timed to coincide with Republic Day, will be marked by a three hour live broadcast of the inaugural function. Artistes including flute maestro Hari Prasad Chaurasia, violinist L Subramaniam, singers Kavita Krishnamurti and Begum Parveen Sultana and the Colonial Cousins are expected to perform at the launch.
The 24-hour edutainment channel takes over from DD News, that is being given a silent burial today. It aims to be 'different', bringing together three broad programming bands - on health and fitness, children, and culture and heritage. The USP is that all programmes will be India centric. Forty per cent of the content is being produced in-house, the rest has been commissioned out to TMG, the Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts and Transtel of Germany. While Discovery Channel is likely to provide some software for the new channel, DD is also in talks with Pentamedia Graphics to source animated versions of Indian classics and folktales.
The new satellite channel will have to face competition from the plethora of private channels that are already vying for viewer attention in the country. DD is taking precautions by reportedly making it mandatory for cable ops to air the FTA channel in the northern belt. The channel, with its India specific programming, will have to sustain audience interest in an age when most rival satellite channels are focusing on going more and more local. Time alone will decide if DD Bharati lives up to its promise of being 'different'
ETV net widens with launch of 6 new channels Sunday
Confirming the report on indiantelevision.com last month (24 December 2001 to be exact), the Ramoji Rao owned Eenadu Television Network announced today that it was all systems go for the launch of its six new regional language channels on Sunday, 27 January.
The four major Hindi-speaking states of Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan will each have a separate channel along with two channels servicing Orissa in the east and Gujarat in the west. The launch of the six channels will see ETV emerge as the "largest television network in the country cutting across linguistic boundaries," an official release states. With the launch of the six channels, ETV Network will have a total of 11 regional channels including Telugu, Kannada, Bangla, Marathi and Urdu.
Programmingwise, the ETV Network's is claiming a unique feature - Annadata, a programme wholly devoted to the farming community. Annadata will provide exclusive fare for each state it caters to and will function as a daily guide for farmers in the respective regions it covers.
All the channels are digital, free-to-air and transmitted from the earth station located at Ramoji Film City in in the southern state of Andhra Pradesh and beaming off the Insat 2E satellite.
Other regional players include the six Zee Alpha channels, the Tara bouquet of four channels, RITV’s two channels and ETC’s Punjabi channel. There is of course the Sahara Group's plans to launch a national news channel and 37 independent city-based regional news stations covering Uttar Pradesh & Uttranchal, Madhya Pradesh & Chattisgarh, Rajasthan, Bihar & Jharkhand, National Capital Region (NCR) and Mumbai. But these are not entertainment channels but news and current affairs-based.
Sabe TV and ETC to divulge Q 3 results next week
The Shri Adhikari Brothers board is meeting on Monday to discuss the third quarter results of the current fiscal.
Another media company that is yet to announce its Q3 results, ETC Networks, will also convene a board meeting on 31 January before going public with its figures. ETC Networks that runs two channels, etc and etc Punjabi, claims to be available to 25 million cable and satellite households. The company claims that besides a strong presence in Delhi, Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, the Punjabi channel has also penetrated several other cities in the country.
ETC's profits in the second quarter of 2001 had slipped to Rs 3.8 million from Rs 13.3 million in the same period last year. Its half yearly profits stood at Rs 14.8 million.
Shri Adhikari Brothers has not fared much better in the last quarter either. It posted profits of Rs 7.4 million as against profits of Rs 50.8 million in the same period in 2000. Its half yearly profits as on 30 September 2001 stood at Rs 38.4 million.
MTV launches 24-hour channel in Thailand
In a bid to further strengthen the MTV brand and presence in Thailand, MTV Asia has launched a 24-hour MTV Thailand channel in association with Ten Music Television (TMT).
TMT is a Thai company, which produces music television programs for Thailand's youth. The announcement follows the renewal of a distribution deal with United Broadcasting Corporation (UBC) effective from 1 November.
The channel aims to take advantage of the local talent to produce shows which will complement the existing international and regional shows already popular in the country. MTV will bring in its distinctive programming expertise to the venture. The release states that the initiative is a part of MTV Asia's ongoing localisation plan for the region. An official release states that more hours of Thai-language programming will be rolled out progressively throughout the year.
MTV Thailand is being aired via United Broadcasting Corporation on Channel 49 in Thailand. Speaking on this senior vice president and managing director, MTV Southeast Asia and Network Group Peter Bullard said: "This year has been an eventful year for MTV Asia. We launched MTV Philippines in January, MTV Korea in July, and we wrapped up the year on a festive note with the joint venture to launch MTV Thailand, as well as winning the coveted title of 'Broadcaster of the Year' at the Asian Television Awards.
Revenues up but OpenTV closes door on 57 staff
Interactive television specialists OpenTV which owns the gaming channels PlayJam and Yo-Yo is to cut 57 jobs this year as it restructures, despite a 51% growth in revenue.
The California-based company, which provides the backbone to Sky’s digital interactive television services, said it would be looking to make savings in the next year of around $9m through restructuring.
As a result of this action, 57 jobs will be wiped out, although the company has not decided where the jobs will be eliminated from yet.
In the UK, it owns the interactive games channel PlayJam broadcast on Sky Digital and Telewest after picking up the iTV interactive agency Static last summer, and has started rolling the games service out overseas. It also recently launched iTV dating community Yo-Yo on Sky Digital.
The job cuts announcement came as OpenTV announced its full year results for 2001, which saw revenues increase 50% to $95.3m for the year.
This year OpenTV evolved from a pure technology company to an integrated iTV business able to bundle content, applications and middleware for our clients,” said OpenTV CEO James Ackerman.
With more than 20 million set-top boxes deployed worldwide, we have a strong foundation that provides the opportunity to create both new and recurring revenue streams from our existing customer base.
We believe that the combination of recurring revenue growth, solid core platform profitability and a strong cash position provides the company with a distinct competitive advantage in the iTV market.”
OpenTV’s pro-forma net loss stood at $25.3m for the year ending December 31 2001 up more than double on the previous year, with the net loss $484.3m again more than double the previous year. The company had cash, securities and equivalents of $189.5m in the bank.
Sorry no time today for an update, (Hope you all understand), something should go up Saturday evening.
I almost have the top floor of the house packed up, so have time for a site update not that much is happening. A reminder for those looking for the porn on the new Pas 2 4090 V mux. It only operates in the evenings Taiwan timezone
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock
TARBS on Pas 8, 12526 H has encrypted again. Bye Bye ESPN Sport.
From Ahmad Mobasheri
Re: Pas 2 4090V
The signal level on 3m dish, in Auckland at 16:00hrs was 5-10%,
comparing with 3901H which was 58-62%.
Noting can be load in Auckland, using 3m C-band dish and Pheonix 333.
(Craigs comment yes many are reporting this mux to be very weak whoever is uplinking it must be using low power)
From the Dish
Palapa C2 113E 11132 V A new Taiwanese mux has started, Sr 18000, Fec 5/6, SIDs 1-6, PIDs 111/112-161/162, line-up: TTV, CTV, CTS, PTS,SBN and CSN.
Satellite Launch news
Insat 3C was launched to 74E with Ariane V147 at 23:41 UTC on 23 January.
JCSAT 8 (154E) is scheduled to launch with Ariane V149 on 15 March. (this one to has a good cband footprint for us)
Insat-3C launched succesfully
BANGALORE: India's communication satellite INSAT-3C was successfully launched into space, after a 54-minute delay, by the European launch vehicle Ariane-4 from the French Guyanese spaceport of Kourou on Thursday.
Soon after the launch, the Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka acquired signals from Insat-3C and took control of the satellite, ISRO sources here said.
In the post-launch briefing at the site, ISRO Chairman Dr K Kasturirangan said initial evaluation of performance of the satellite "appears to be satisfactory".
He expressed delight over the successful launch and thanked the Ariane team which "made success one more to an already very successful list".
Ariane Space President Jean Marie Luton said it was yet another success for India in satellite technology.
Insat-3C's launch was the first commercial launch of any satellite in the world this year, Luton said.
INSAT-3C satellite built by ISRO, was successfully launched early this morning (January 24, 2002) by the Ariane-4 launch vehicle of Arianespace. The 147th flight of Ariane, carrying ISRO's 2,750 kg INSAT-3C, lifted off at 05:17 am IST from Kourou, French Guyana in South America. INSAT-3C was injected into a Geo-synchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO), 21 minutes after the lift-off, in a 3-axis stabilised mode, with a perigee of 570 km and an apogee of 35,920 km and an inclination of 4 deg. with respect to the equator. The satellite is at present going round the earth with an orbital period of about 10.5 hours.
The INSAT Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hassan in Karnataka acquired the telemetry signal from INSAT-3C at 5:47 am IST. The initial health checks on the satellite indicate that the performance of the satellite is normal. First operations on this satellite were carried out by issuing commands from the Master Control Facility (MCF) at Hasssan. The outermost panel of the stowed solar array on the south side of the satellite was oriented towards the sun to start generating the electrical power required by the satellite during its transfer orbit phase. Subsequently, the earth viewing face was oriented towards earth and calibration of the gyros on board the satellite has been carried out.
INSAT-3C is being tracked, monitored and controlled from MCF, Hassan. During the initial phase of the operation, MCF also utilises INMARSAT Organisation's ground stations at Beijing (China), Fucino (Italy) and Lake Cowichan (Canada). The satellite's orbit is being precisely determined by continuous ranging from the participating Telemetry Tracking and Command (TTC) stations.
In the coming days, orbit raising operations on INSAT-3C will be carried out by firing the 440 Newton liquid apogee motor on board in stages till the satellite attains its final geo-stationary orbit, about 36,000 km above the equator. The satellite has about 1.5 tonne of propellant (Mono-Methyl Hydrazine - MMH and Mixed Oxides of Nitrogen - MON-3) for orbit raising operations as well as for station keeping and in-orbit attitude control. The on orbit fuel availability will enable maintaining the satellite for operational services for a period of 12 years.
When the satellite reaches near geo-stationary orbit, deployment of the two solar panels and the two antennas will be carried out and the satellite put in its final 3-axis stabilised mode. The payloads will be subsequently checked out before the commissioning of the satellite.
INSAT-3C will be co-located with INSAT-1D at 74 deg East longitude. Other INSAT satellite locations are: INSAT-2C and INSAT-2B at 93.5 deg East longitude, INSAT-2E and INSAT-3B at 83 deg East longitude, INSAT-2A at 48 deg East longitude and INSAT-2DT at 55 deg East longitude.
INSAT-3C carries 24 C-band transponders, six extended C-band transponders, two S-band transponders and a Mobile Satellite Service transponder operating in S-band up-link and C-band down link.
INSAT-3C has the main body in the shape of a cuboid of 2 X 1.7 X 2.8 m. When the two solar panels are fully deployed in orbit, it will measure 15.5 m in length. The sun tracking solar panels generate 2.75 kW of power. Two 60 Ah Nickel-Hydrogen batteries support full payload operations even during eclipses. INSAT-3C, like all its predecessors in the INSAT series, is a 3-axis body-stabilised spacecraft using momentum/reaction wheels, earth sensors, sun sensors, inertial reference unit and magnetic torquers. It is equipped with unified bi-propellant thrusters. The satellite has two deployable antennas and three fixed antennas that carry out various transmit and receive functions.
INSAT-3C is the second satellite to be launched in the INSAT-3 series. The first satellite, INSAT-3B, was launched on March 22, 2000. INSAT-3C is expected to augment the present INSAT capacity for communication and broadcasting, besides providing continuity of the services of INSAT-2C when it reaches the end of mission life late this year.
With ISRO Satellite Centre (ISAC), Bangalore, as lead centre, INSAT-3C was realised with major contributions from Space Applications Centre (SAC), Ahmedabad, Liquid Propulsion Systems Centre (LPSC) at Valiamala and Bangalore, Vikram Sarabhai Space Centre (VSSC) and ISRO Inertial Systems Unit (IISU), Thiruvananthapuram. Besides, several industries in both public and private sectors have contributed to the realisation of INSAT-3C. MCF is responsible for initial and in-orbit operation of all geo-stationary satellites of ISRO.
ACCC probes Optus-Austar link
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has begun formal market inquiries regarding a proposed alliance between Optus and Austar as the two parties continue negotiations on a deal to rationalise part of the Australian pay-TV industry.
The ACCC has written to a range of industry players and to other interested parties canvassing their opinion on a closer alliance between the pair. However, no formal deal has yet been put to the regulator.
Austar and Optus are believed to be divided on the valuation of their respective operations, precluding any deal in the short-term.
Representatives of Optus's advisers, JP Morgan, are understood to have travelled to Singapore last week to brief management of Optus's parent, Singapore Telecommunications Ltd, on the status of the talks with Austar, which is being assisted by Morgan Stanley Dean Witter.
The talks come as SingTel reviews the Optus consumer and multimedia unit to determine the best way forward for the now cash-flow positive division.
The review is seen internally as a precursor to any deal with Austar, and SingTel is said to be more than satisfied with the progress of the division, which has been gaining customers each week on the strength of its bundled service offering.
A team from Optus assessed Austar over Christmas, but the two companies are understoodto be wide apart on the valuation of their respective assets.
Austar, while eager to see a deal done in the short term, is comfortable in the knowledge that its banking syndicate has indicated time is not of the essence in securing a solution to the group's financial issues.
The company owes its lenders - led by JP Morgan, Citibank and Toronto Dominion - $400 million and is trying to refinance its debt following the breach of a covenant governing the loan on December 31 that could see lenders call in the funds from the company by the end of the March quarter.
This week, Austar said it had $103million in the bank and that its cash burn rate had slowed after it had scaled back and restructured its national operations.
In November last year both Optus and Telstra - which controls 50 per cent of pay-TV rival Foxtel - canvassed the regulator concerning a potential acquisition of Austar.
The ACCC is believed to have then started its own assessment of the pay-TV market in Australia, but is yet to form a view on any alliance between Optus and Austar.
Optus is still assessing the merits of absorbing Austar's $400 million debt onto its parent's balance sheet.
Austar shares rose 1¢ to 32.5¢.
ACCC examines Austar purchase
AUSTRALIA'S competition watchdog has begun examining the competitive consequences of a potential purchase of struggling regional pay TV group Austar, raising expectations a deal could be closer than expected.
The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission has written to companies seeking comment on whether a deal would substantially lessen competition in the pay TV and other markets.
In its letter, the ACCC notes press speculation of a possible acquisition of Austar by Optus or Foxtel and that it "intends to examine the competitive consequences of these possible acquisitions in order to determine whether any issues might arise".
It seeks information on issues such as implications for content providers and channel operators, the general pay TV industry and on the level of industry competition.
Significantly, it has also asked for comment on the potential competition impact on the telecommunications and internet service provision markets.
The ACCC blocked the 1994 merger attempt between Foxtel and the now defunct Australis Media pay TV group as it believed the merger would reduce telephony competition.
Optus offers local call competition to Telstra on its cable, which also delivers its pay TV service. Austar has an extensive regional broadband internet network that is underutilised due to lack of funding, and is also a mobile telephony reseller.
Shareholders of Foxtel, 25 per cent owned by The Australian's owner, News Limited, have flagged the potential for broadband internet services on its network if it is digitised.
Observers said the ACCC's inquiries suggested Optus and Foxtel had been talking to the regulator as it would not normally begin inquiries based on press reports.
But ACCC commissioner Ross Jones said it had not spoken to them and there was little market response to its inquiries, "probably because we don't have any proposal to talk about".
He said the ACCC had been interested in reports that Austar needed to roll over its debt by December 31. That has still yet to occur and Austar this week forecast a loss before interest, tax and depreciation for the year to December of $87 million.
Austar has confirmed discussions with the metropolitan pay TV group Singtel/Optus, but Singtel yesterday declined to comment.
Foxtel also declined to comment. The ACCC has previously said the regional and metropolitan markets are separate, so on that basis Austar could combine with either of the metropolitan pay TV groups.
Inexpensive Satellite Does the Job
ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Once every 100 minutes, a bargain basement satellite loops around the earth, sending and receiving digital messages over antennae made from a metal tape measure.
A sailor on a solo crossing of the Atlantic bounces signals off the satellite to stay in touch with his family. New Zealanders on a cross-country hike use it to communicate with friends back home.
Any ham radio user with the proper digital packet-transmitting equipment who is within 2,000 miles of the 25-pound satellite can use it to send single-line text messages to a public channel.
After four months in space, the U.S. Naval Academy's ''bird'' is proving surprisingly resilient, to the delight of the midshipmen and faculty advisers who designed and built it.
The so-called Prototype Communications Satellite (PCSat) was the 44th amateur satellite put in orbit. It is one of more than a dozen built by university students around the world.
At a cost of just $50,000 - including plane tickets to the Alaska launch site - it was constructed using off-the-shelf parts not designed to withstand the rigors of space. Its life span was only expected to be a few months.
Six students put together the satellite last year after a three-year research and design project made possible with a grant from Boeing Co. The Department of Defense Space Test Program approved the project and put it on a launch list.
A tape measure from Home Depot provided the antenna. Power comes from two dozen AA batteries that are recharged by the solar panels, which are in sunlight an average of 75 minutes per orbit.
Midshipmen designed circuit boards, ordering them from an Internet supplier. Parts rated for use in space, which are built to withstand the effects of radiation from the sun, would have been too expensive, so the students went with regular circuit boards.
Sept. 29 was Launch Day, and there were anxious moments at the academy as the cube-shaped satellite hitched a ride aboard an Athena rocket that blasted into space from Kodiak, Alaska.
Save for the failure of one of the six solar panels, damaged when the satellite separated from the rocket, there have been no problems.
On Launch Day, it was nine hours before PCSat made its first pass over Annapolis and the midshipmen and faculty advisers could see for themselves that their satellite was working.
''I was thrilled. It was one of the most fulfilling experiences of my life,'' said Steven Lawrence, who helped build the satellite before he graduated in May.
In the following weeks, people in remote areas began to use the satellite as word about it spread through an international organization of ham radio operators.
Just how long PCSat works depends on how much solar radiation bombards the satellite and how long the batteries, solar panels and thousands of transistors withstand the sun's damaging effects.
''If we get lucky with radiation, it could last three years,'' said Darrell Boden, a professor in the aerospace engineering department.
TV1 and TV2 via Sky now seems to support Teletext subtitles, try it when subtitle supported programming is on. It isn't the full Teletext service only subtitles support. A couple of things I note when comparing TVNZ Tv2 and Tv2 via Sky, Skys picture appears to have the colour slightly tweaked up, also Skys Audio is enhanced. I don't have my gear hooked up to a fancy home theatre but Skys Audio is definatly processed compared to TVNZ's. Anyone with a home theatre notice a big difference? The Nokia reports TVNZ has 192k audio, Skys is 256.
Tommorows page update could be very late as I have some more packing planned for tommorow afternoon.
It seems ABC APAC has stuffed up by using PAS 8, read more about it on Bobs Satfacts update.
Satfacts page updated.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Bill Richards
RE: new mux 4090 V PAS 2
Vpid32 Apid33 SID1 CH1 is now TVBS
Vpid48 Apid49 SID9 CH9 is TVBS NEWS
Vpid53 Apid54 SID11 CH11 is now running XXX movies no Channel Displayed
(Craigs comment, seems to be a lot of changes going on in this mux, I expect it will be linked to the one on 4026 V)
From Joe Gallo
There’s a feed of ABC Asia-Pacific at 3901H 30800 on both Adhoc II and Upgrade.
(Craigs comment, see Satfacts update for info on this seems the experts at Panamsat advised them wrongly and coverage was not as expected.)
4090v 24610 3/4..yes 12 channel package with 2 porn channels...in NTSC
and 60% here in lower south west of WA...nokia DBOX and 3m kti c/ku...
From Joe 22/01/02
WWF‘Raw’ feed again today at 3:00 p.m. (AEDST) on 3992V 26470 on 'Channel 3' (PAS-2)
(Craigs comment, PPV events reported there also)
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E A new mux has started on 4090 V, Sr 24607, Fec 3/4, SIDs 1-11, PIDs 32/33-82/83, line-up: TVBS, Sun TV, TTV, CTV, CTS, FTV Entertainment,Star Sports, BBC World, TVBS Newsnet and Rainbow Channel 1-2.
(Craigs comment, various Asian sites are calling this "TV-STAR"
Pas 2 169E 12732 V A new mux has started on, Sr 24607, Fec 3/4, SIDs 1-11,PIDs 32/33-82/83, North East Asian beam, line-up: TVBS, Sun TV, TTV, CTV, CTS, FTV Entertainment, Star Sports, BBC World, TVBS Newsnet, Rainbow Channel 1 and Channel X.
PAS 8 166E 3940 H "EWTN Catholic Radio and EWTN Radio Catolica" have started on, SID 15, APID 2522.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "Savoir Knowledge Channel and STV-MTV"are fta
DD will telecast launch of Insat-3C on Thursday
MUMBAI: India's Insat-3C satellite will be launched on Thursday at 4.23 a.m. (IST) by an Ariane-4 rocket from the European spaceport of Kourou in French Guyana, the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) announced on Tuesday.
The launch will be telecast live by Doordarshan (DD-1) from 3.45 a.m. (IST) on Thursday.
The final countdown for the much-awaited launch began on Monday. This will be the eighth Indian satellite to be boosted into orbit by an Ariane rocket.
According to Isro, the 2,750 kg spacecraft had been put under intensive tests ever since it arrived in Kourou on December 4. The master control facility at Hassan in Karnataka is also fully prepared to take control of Insat-3C as soon as it is placed in the geostationary transfer orbit.
The Ariane-4 rocket has been equipped with two additional strap- on boosters in the first stage of the launcher for providing extra thrust during lift-off and initial ascent.
Originally, Insat-3C was to have been launched by an Ariane-5 rocket but as there were some technical problems the mission was rescheduled to January and it was decided to use an Ariane-4 rocket.
(Craigs comment all times in Indian time)
Austar 'in the black by 2003'
REGIONAL pay-TV operator Austar United Communications has asserted it was on track to become cash-flow positive next financial year.
The news comes as the operator, which also confirmed it was in "high level discussions" with Optus, said it was likely to post an pre-tax loss for the full year to June 30 of $87 million.
Austar said it used only $24.3 million in cash in the fourth quarter, less than a fifth the $125.7 million it burned in the third quarter.
"This is a significant improvement over changes in prior quarters, further details of which will be released to the market at the end of January 2002," a company spokesman said.
Assirt analyst Max Wheeler said the group is "trying to make itself look like a nicer target".
Austar needs new funds and/or partners as, like most pay-TV groups, it is losing money as it struggles to compete with free-to-air networks.
Analysts think Foxtel and Singapore Telecommunications, which owns Optus, may bid for Austar.
Austar confirmed "high-level discussions" about an "enhanced commercial relationship" with Optus.
Optus spokeswoman Louise Ingram said "we talk to Austar nearly every day on a variety of matters".
Austar said restructuring and other initiatives during the December quarter were expected to result in annualised savings of $90 million for 2002.
The company stood by its expectations of being able to function without extra funds, despite unresolved talks with banks over its debt.
"As previously announced, the company continues to work cooperatively with its banks to restructure its existing debt facility to align it with current cash flow forecasts," said an Austar spokesman.
"The revised terms of the existing facility will provide for the company to execute its business plan without the need for additional funding."
Austar said depreciation and amortisation was estimated at $217 million for the year, with net interest expense of around $24 million.
Shares in Austar, 81 per cent owned by UnitedGlobalCom of the US, were steady at 31.5c.
Austar to lose $343m at least
Austar may have stemmed the flow of red ink but the struggling regional pay TV provider is still facing a $343 million full-year loss which could still be worse thanks to writedowns in the value of its spectra.
Austar confirmed yesterday that it had $103.2 million cash left in the bank at the end of December, having spent $24.3 million of its cash reserves in the fourth quarter of 2001. This is a substantial reduction from the $125.7 million the company burned through in the three months to September 30.
Easing concerns about its solvency, Austar said it remained on track to be cashflow positive in 2004.
Austar estimates that it will post a loss of about $343 million for the year to December 31. "It could slip one way or the other by a few million but not much," Austar spokesman Bruce Meagher said.
Austar expects to record a loss of $87 million for 2001 before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation. It will release its audited financial result in early March.
As part of its full-year result, the Austar board is considering writing down the value of some of the company's intangible assets, namely the TARBS metropolitan microwave spectrum bought for $140 million in October 2000. "We've taken the view that because of the changing market circumstances, those items are less valuable than they were some time ago," Mr Meagher said.
Austar's bankers have yet to agree to refinance its $400 million debt. Austar has been technically in breach of its loan agreements since the start of this month. Confident of securing the banks' support, Austar said the restructured loan would enable it to execute its business plan without requiring additional funding.
Austar undertook a drastic restructure of its business in December in a bid to improve its financial position. It sacked 400 staff, shut down regional offices and outsourced many business functions. These measures should save the company $90 million a year.
Austar also confirmed yesterday that it was continuing "high level discussions" with Optus about a closer alliance which could allow both companies to slash their operating costs.
Canwest staunches bleeding NZ TV channels
Canadian-owned TV3 and TV4 have seen the first tangible signs of a turnaround after a year of heavy losses.
The channels made a modest profit of $C718,000 ($NZ1.05 million) for the three months ending November 30, 2001, double the $C345,000 profit recorded in the same period a year earlier.
Today's positive result followed three consecutive loss-making quarters.
Revenue was $C18.3 million, compared with $C16.9 million in the November 2000 quarter.
The figures were released by CanWest NZ's parent company, CanWest Global Communications, for the first quarter of the company's financial year.
Brent Impey, CanWest NZ's chief executive officer, told NZPA the result was a testament to a back-to-basics strategy focusing on programming, sales and marketing.
"It's the first positive sign of a turnaround and we are ahead of projections in a market that is short and soft."
Mr Impey said both ratings and revenue were tracking ahead. TV3 news had enjoyed significant ratings gains over the past few months, notably since September 11.
TV3 and TV4's revival was expected as the company increased its advertising revenues and enjoyed a more stable exchange rate for buying overseas programmes.
Also doing well were CanWest NZ's radio interests -- it owns the More FM stations and is majority shareholder in the formerly listed RadioWorks group.
Mr Impey said its radio revenue continued to grow, "up from $C14.6 to $C15.3 million and that's followed straight through to the bottom line, up from $C3.9 million to $C4.2 million, so that's a pleasing performance".
"Radio has enjoyed good revenue growth as an industry. We're the biggest player now, the largest network, and we've continued to perform well."
CanWest said that over the last year its New Zealand radio operations had overtaken its rival, the Radio Network, in revenue, audience and stations.
Internationally, CanWest also enjoyed a return to profitability this quarter. CanWest Global posted a first quarter profit of $C200 million, up 56 percent from the $C128 million recorded in the first quarter of the previous fiscal year.
The result, before amortisation, was largely boosted by the sale of a Canadian television station, giving it a one-off gain of $C63 million.
Net earnings for the quarter were $C108 million compared with $C41 million a year earlier.
Combined revenues from CanWest's operations in Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Ireland for the year increased by 80 percent to $C728 million from $C404 million the previous year.
CanWest said its overall results were affected by continued weakness in the North American economy, particularly in print advertising, but television operating profits were up 7 percent.
Early last year another CanWest interest, Australia's Ten Network, showed interest in greater programming co-operation with CanWest NZ and possibly taking over the loss-making TV3 and TV4.
There was also speculation later in the year that the parent company, itself losing money, might sell some of its Australasian assets to pay off debt, which had soared due to its purchase of a Canadian newspaper chain.
This was denied by CanWest chief executive Leonard Asper and analysts said the Australian and New Zealand interests were important parts of the Canadian-based company's earnings.
An indication of how much TV3 and TV4 bled is seen in CanWest NZ's annual figures last year. The television unit lost $C8.94 million ($NZ13.54 million) in the year to August 2001, compared with a profit of $C832,000 the previous year. Revenue dropped to $C58.44 million from $C72.98 million.
Prior to that TV3 took a pre-tax loss of $NZ19.9 million, largely due to forex losses and a $NZ20 million writedown in old programming purchases.
In contrast, net profits for CanWest NZ's radio unit more than doubled last year to $C14.3 million from $C7.0 million on revenue of $C56.86 million, up from $C29.98 million.
In New Zealand dollar terms, CanWest NZ posted an overall operating profit last year of $NZ9.8 million before interest, tax, depreciation or amortisation (ebitda).
Eenadu to launch 6 regional channels
Eenadu Group is launching six vernacular language channels on January 27, a move that would establish it as the largest player in the regional market.
The channels will be in the state languages of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Orissa. The language channels of Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan will have a limited and common band of prime time programming in Hindi. For the rest of the time, the channels will have programming in regional dialects.
?We are launching six regional channels on January 27. We will have a common Hindi programming for the four states in the prime time. The Gujarati and Oriya channels, however, will have their own prime time programming,” said AV Rao, the chief spokesperson for ETV Network.
The channels will be digital and free-to-air. Eenadu Group already has shifted its other channels from analogue to the digital mode. The group runs its channels under the brand name of ETV and uses the INSAT 2E satellite.
ETV has positioned these as “infotainment channels.” The channels will have three news bulletins, besides a special half-hour slot farmer’s programme telecast daily. “News is an important component of our programming. This is in addition to our entertainment programming,” said Mr Rao.
Eenadu Group also produces and commissions telefilms for each of its language channel. The company has a big studio in Hyderabad for movie and television production.
With the launch of the six channels, ETV Network will have a total of 11 regional channels including Telugu, Kannada, Bangla, Marathi and Urdu.
Other regional players include the Tara bouquet of four channels, the Alpha channels, RITV’s two channels and ETC’s Punjabi channel.
Mumbai-based Unistar is producing a half-hour comedy programme at 7.30-8 pm band. The show will be called Kyonki, Abhi to Main Mara Nahin.
EENADU TO LAUNCH SIX NEW REGIONAL CHANNELS ON JAN. 27
Eenadu Television Network, the leading language television channel in Andhra Pradesh, is planning to launch six new channels by the end of this month as a part of its plans to expand its network to other regions.
?We will be launching six new channels on January 27. The regional channels will be launched in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Rajasthan, Gujarat and Orissa. This is a part of our strategy to expand our reach to other regions from the existing ones,” a senior company official told The Asian Age.
According to the official, all the channels will be in digital mode and free to air. “Being available in the digital mode will save us costs and more programmes can be accommodated,” the official added.
Eenadu group, having strong brand presence in the print medium, has ventured into television industry as a regional channel through E-TV, a Telugu entertainment satellite channel. It is the only south-based television house which has ventured into regions other than South India.
At present the Eenadu group has got five regional channels which are running in Bengali, Marathi, Telegu, Kannada and Urdu languages. When asked about the programming strategy, the company will be adopting for the new channels, the official said that a common programme in Hindi will be aired in the prime time for channels in Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan.
*part from the Hindi programme there will also be news bulletins, programmes for farmers, telefilms, soaps and other entertainment programmes like music programmes, etc,” the company official informed.
Dyke: '2m would buy £99 digital TV box'
About 2m people would be willing to buy a £99 digital TV box giving them access to up to 16 free-to-air channels, according to research by the BBC.
Greg Dyke, the director general of the corporation, said pricing of digital TV equipment would be a critical factor in the government's decision to switch off the analogue signal.
"Our research suggests a couple of million people would be interested in a £99 box. And if it's £99 today, it's going to be half that in two or three years' time," Mr Dyke told a select committee today at the House of Commons.
About 8m of the 24m homes in Britain have already got digital TV, whether through satellite, cable or terrestrial networks.
The government wants to phase out analogue television from 2006 but has pledged not to turn off the service until virtually every home has upgraded its TV.
ITV and the BBC are working together with other commercial broadcasters to come up with a package of free channels that would be attractive enough to the "refusniks" who don't see any advantage in digital TV.
"A switch-off date would help," Mr Dyke added, saying he believed the introduction of a free-to-air box would allow a target for switch-off "soon after" 2006.
The other major impediment to increasing digital TV penetration was the lack of power in the existing digital terrestrial TV signal, he said.
"One of the problems with digital terrestrial TV in this country is that one in five people who buy a digital box find it's unusable because of their aerial," Mr Dyke added.
"If we can increase the power, we can take away the aerial problem."
The BBC boss said the corporation had shared the research with digital set-top box manufacturers including Pace, which is planning to be the first on the market by launching a free-to-air digital box on March 30.
Mr Dyke said the BBC was also pressing for a package of free channels for potential satellite customers.
The new Pace box is geared towards the digital terrestrial market only.
But in the three years since Sky Digital was launched, only about 300,000 people have bought a digital satellite TV box to get free-to-air channels but no pay-TV subscription, he added.
And BSkyB has just increased the cost of installing a satellite box without a pay-TV subscription to £315.
Mr Dyke also told the media select committee that the new Barb TV ratings measurement system introduced three weeks ago was producing figures that are "all over the place".
"Nobody's got any confidence in the figures at the moment," he said. "What's quite clear is that the present Barb panel is not working effectively. The figures are all over the place."
Live chat in the chatroom 8.30pm Syd time onwards and 9pm NZ onwards, maybe the last time with this particular chatroom software (PARACHAT) they don't seem to reply to my emails asking for a reduction in the price $480 U.S is rather overpriced for the server software! which is only a small piece of code.
Mediasat has changed the name of the former Thai TV channel to "MSAT MCPC 2" just colour bars there at the moment.
Satfacts page has been updated, it seems the TVNZ FTA service could be under threat with SKY taking over some of Telstra Saturns Transponder space. Welcome to a Sky monopoly. I wonder how long the FTA TVNZ inside Skys mux will last?. Dealers, Installers and viewers Please lets all email Marrion Hobbs Minister of Broadcasting, be sure to remind her several hundred people have already installed FTA satellite systems at very low cost to get the FTA TVNZ channels via satellite. Anyway her address is firstname.lastname@example.org if TVNZ FTA digital turns off, what does that leave viewers with? ABC Australia the very channel she is trying to model TVNZ on! I bet she dosn't even have a FTA satellite receiver! just a Sky box maybe a dealer out there will offer her a free one so she can see the potential benefits. With Digital FTA recievers and Dish packages going for around $300 this is the cheapest way to create "digital tv" in NZ.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Bill Richards
Pas 2 4090 V SR 24610, Fec 3/4
Vpid32 Apid33 SID1 CH1 BBC WORLD Audio Only
Vpid34 Apid35 SID2 CH2 Blank No Video or Audio
Vpid36 Apid37 SID3 CH3 Unknown
Vpid38 Apid30 SID4 CH4 CTV
Vpid40 Apid41 SID5 CH5 CTS
Vpid42 Apid43 SID6 CH6 Unknown
Vpid80 Apid81 SID7 CH7 Star Sports
Vpid82 Apid83 SID8 CH8 BBC WORLD
Vpid48 Apid49 SID9 CH9 Test Card
Vpid50 Apid51 SID10 CH10 Rainbow Channel
Vpid53 Apid54 SID11 CH11 VIDEO Channel
Vpid98 Apid99 SID12 CH12 No Video No Audio
From Bill Richards again..
Pas 2 3962 V SR 6000 Fec 3/4 Vpid 308 Apid 256 "DKK MUMBAI DSNGO5" Feed Encrypted NTL
(Craigs comment, this is the India vs England 2nd ODI Cricket match)
From Hoang Duong
I would like to ask you a question that are all 13 channels of TARBS on PAS 8 longterm FTA?
(Craigs comment, they are supposedly upgrading to new software, but rumors persist of Financial problems. Some might even say they are FTA at the moment to attract viewers)
From the Dish
Pas 2 169E 4090 V New mux Sr 26410 Fec 3/4 channels include BBC World, StarSports, CTS, ETTV, FTV Taiwan, HF?, TTV, R? (might be rainbow) also this mux may have started on 12730 V. This looks like they are using the Pas 2 cross linking transponder to hop from Cband to Ku.
Pas 8 166E 12526 H "TCM Australia" has left again.
Pas 8 166E 12526 H "TGRT" is back on PIDs 525/653.
Pas 8 166E 12526 H New PIDs for several of the channels.
(Ntsc, T Kameda)
Optus B3 156E 12336V "Former Thaitv5 channel renamed to Msat MCPC 2, has colour bars"
Koreasat 2 113E 12330 H BCN (clear), MCN (clear), Movie 1 and Movie 2 have started /enc., SIDs 20504-20508, PIDs 1600/1601-1900/1901. CNN International Asia, MTV Korea, C3TV, OCN and DirePC have left this mux.
Koreasat 2 113E 12731 H Living TV and Medi TV have started, Sr 28200, Fec 5/6, SIDs 24 and 25, PIDs 768/784 and 1024/1040.
Koreasat 2 113E 12692 H Occasional feeds on, Sr 2963, Fec3/4.
Koreasat 2 113E 12365 H "Green TV" and the occasional feeds have left.
Koreasat 2 113E 12600 H "The Skycast mux" has left
Koreasat 2 113E 12643 H "DY TV and DSB 1-2" have left
ST 1 88E 3632 V "CTS and TTV" are encrypted again.
Cable whips satellite in Salt Lake deal
CHANNEL Seven's television broadcasts of the Salt Lake City Winter Olympics will reach Australia by undersea cable - not satellite - following a multimillion-dollar deal with telecommunications carrier Asia Global Crossing.
The agreement, negotiated this month, covers transmission of the Manchester Commonwealth Games as well.
Channel Seven network sport operations general manager Col Southey said satellite options were considered but discarded.
The duplex transmission, hardware integration, low circuit latency, and pricing offered by the cable provider was the better option for the limited period of the two events, he said.
An Asia Global Crossing spokesperson said the contract was groundbreaking, as it was the first time a telecommunications provider had chosen to offer single-event service at a reasonable cost.
The duration -- equal to one month's service -- differed from the long-term contracts favoured by telcos, and would change the way bandwidth was sold by the major players in the future, the spokesperson said.
The transmission would be remotely managed from the carrier's Sydney network operations centre.
The dedicated 45Mbps cable transmission with a maximum of 155Mbps means viewers will see and hear live events and commentators with little noticeable delay.
Cable broadcast delay is 150 milliseconds, in contrast to the potential 800 to 900 millisecond delays on satellite.
In the event of a failure, Asia Global Crossing's cable network could reroute broadcasts via Los Angeles to Japan and south to Singapore and Channel 7's Sydney studio.
(Craigs comment BOO HISSS!!, there should still be a huge amount of feeds and coverage up there via satellite)
SOURCE: Asia Global Crossing
Asia Global Crossing Wins Seven Network Contract for 2002 Olympic Winter Games And 2002 Manchester Commonwealth Games Transmissions
- AGC's dedicated low-latency fibre solution replaces traditional satellite - Provides full end-to-end managed solution
SYDNEY, Australia, Jan. 21 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Asia Global Crossing (NYSE: AX - news) has won a multi-million dollar contract to provide the Seven Network with transmission capacity for its domestic broadcast of the Salt Lake City Olympic Winter Games in February 2002 and the Commonwealth Games being staged in Manchester from July-August 2002.
The Commonwealth Games contract was awarded to Asia Global Crossing by the Seven Network because it was the only network service provider that could provide fully redundant fibre network capacity using its own wholly-owned global fibre backbone. This will allow Asia Global Crossing to provide between 45 and 155 Mbps of bandwidth needed for transmission of the limited life of each event and guarantee performance to Australian audiences.
The Seven Network considered a traditional satellite solution but preferred the Asia Global Crossing proposal of providing guaranteed transmission latencies and bandwidth capability for the events' limited time period at reasonable cost.
``What makes these transmissions unique is our need to cost-effectively send and receive images via duplex transmission with extremely low circuit latency,'' said Col Southey, general manager, Network Sport Operations, Seven Network. ``Asia Global Crossing was able to provide a network transmission plan which incorporated all our requirements, including hardware integration and end to end service.''
For the Olympic Winter Games, Asia Global Crossing will provide Seven Network with a dedicated 45 Mbps service from the US via a gateway in Los Angeles to the Seven Network's Epping studios. Remote configuration and network management will be provided by Asia Global Crossing's Network Operations Centre in Sydney.
For the Commonwealth Games, Asia Global Crossing will provide 10 video channel feeds from the UK to Melbourne and five video channel feeds from Melbourne to Manchester via an ATM-based video feed network enabling high resolution transmission. Asia Global Crossing will also provide additional data and voice services for the duration of the Games.
Drew Kelton, Vice President and General Manager, Asia Global Crossing Australia-New Zealand, said, ``This is a significant win with one of the country's leading broadcasters. The Seven Network, as local TV Rights Holding Broadcaster of the Sydney 2000 Olympic Games, has built an enviable reputation globally for high quality coverage and reporting of international sports events. We are delighted to have been selected to ensure that coverage consistency is maintained to the highest standards in quality, availability and service that we have all come to enjoy during these events.''
The Olympic Winter Games runs from 8 February to 24 February and the XVII Commonwealth Games is being staged from 25 July to 4 August.
Austar forecasts $87m loss
REGIONAL pay TV company Austar United Communications has forecast an earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) loss of $87 million for the full year to 30 June 2002.
The company also told the ASX it was continuing to hold high level discussions with Singapore Telecommunications regarding possibilities for "an enhanced commercial relationship".
"The company is estimating a preliminary full year EBITDA loss of approximately $87 million unaudited, including the results of (television merchandising operation) TVSN Ltd, management fees and foreign exchange losses, but before one-off charges associated with the restructuring and other cost saving initiatives announced on 4 December 2001 of approximately $15 million," Austar said.
Austar said it had around $103.2 million in cash at December 31, 2001 - a $24.3 million reduction from its $127.5 million cash position at September 30.
"This is a significant improvement over changes in prior quarters, further details of which will be released to the market at the end of January 2002," the company said.
Austar said restructuring and other initiatives implemented during the December quarter were expected to result in annualised savings of around $90 million for 2002. Early last month Austar laid off 400 of its 1200 staff.
The company stood by its expectations of being able to execute its business plan without the need for additional funding.
"As previously announced, the company continues to work cooperatively with its banks to restructure its existing debt facility to align it with current cash flow forecasts," Austar said.
"The revised terms of the existing facility will provide for the company to execute its business plan without the need for additional funding."
Austar said it was continuing to hold high level discussions with Singapore Telecommunications, which owns Optus.
However, no new developments had arisen since November 2001.
Earlier this month Austar said the companies were looking at a number potential ways to cooperate, including joint ventures.
Austar said depreciation and amortisation was estimated at $217 million for the year, with net interest expense of around $24 million.
The company would also consider the carrying values of certain assets, including the company's spectrum licences and goodwill.
However, decisions regarding those assets would not affect the company's cash position, Austar said.
Austar shares yesterday closed at 31.5c while Singapore Telecommunications ended at $1.77.
Plenty of news items today. Also I have may have located a new news source which should bring in a few more satellite tv related news items. I prefer to keep the news items to things of local interest, not much point in posting the latest happenings in the U.K as its not of much interest to our local scene. If you have any local sites of interest with pay / satellite media news let me know and I can add them to my daily list of sites to trawl for info.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock 21/01/02
3.30 pm SA time
B1, 12397 H, sr 7200, ESPN Sports, currently showing Golf
From David Knight 21/01/02
B1, 12397H. 7200 Golden Globe Awards.(NBC Coverage with adverts)
From Chris Pickstock 20/01/02
On B1, 12397 H, sr 7200, Aust v South Africa from Qld
In 16:9 format, but best of all, no adverts !! (Was short term only)
B3 12367 V "Channel V music event"
From Bill Richards
0942 UTC 20-01-02
Asiasat2 3691V Sr 13330 Fec 7/8 Vpid 512 Apid 4096 "EBU 4:2:2 Feed"
(Craigs comment, if you have time try and record the stream via DVB Recorder and play it back on the pc with a MPG2 video Codec using Media Player)
From the Dish
Intelsat 701 180E 3769 R "TBN and the occasioanl feeds are back/still on", Sr 20000, Fec 7/8.
PAS 2 169E 4148 V "Hong Kong Jockey Club Feeds" , SID 3, Vpid 1360 Apid 1320
PAS 2 169E 12297 H Occasional CTS feeds, Sr 3333, Fec 3/4, Chinese beam.
PAS 8 166E 12380 V "SBN" has started on, Sr 4285, Fec3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 266, SE Asian beam.
PAS 8 166E 12526 H "Cartoon Network Australia" has replaced TCM Australia on , SID 5, Vpid 516 Apid 644.
PAS 8 166E 12526 H "Sky Racing and Nightmoves" have started on, SID 1,Vpid 512 Apid 640.
Koreasat 2 113E 12706 H DIY has replaced PSB, Sr 2963, Fec3/4, Vpid 4294 Apid 4295.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "Channel NewsAsia and Fashion TV" are fta
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H 3496 H "BBC World, National Geographic Adventure 1 and SCTV"are now encrypted.
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H "TVRI" is back on, Sr 17800, Fec 3/4, Vpid 33 Apid 36.
LMI 1 75E 3430 H "Radio Lanka" has started on, Sid 10, Apid 1120, 13-14 UTC.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 3980 V NID/TID for the STAR TV mux: 164/9.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3791 V NID/TID and SID for MAC TV: 1/2 and 200.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3820 V NID/TID and SID for Anhui TV: 100/2 and 2.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3951 HNID/TID for the Five Star TV mux: 68/1.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "CTS and TTV"are now in clear.
HK goes into orbit with Beijing, Israel space pact
In what could be the largest space-technology collaboration between Hong Kong and the mainland, companies from the two sides, as well as Israel signed contracts yesterday in Beijing to make and launch two satellites for the special administrative region in 2004 and 2006.
The two commercial communication satellites, to be manufactured by Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI), will be launched atop China's Long March 3A rockets to serve the Asian market, including China, said David Chu, chairman of the Hong Kong Satellite Technology Holdings Ltd.
If the two are successful, another eight communications satellites will follow suit in succession within six years to form a "sky network" of HKSAT series, said Chu.
Under the landmark deals, China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp (CASC) will serve as a subcontractor of the satellite project, to make some sub-systems and components of the satellites, and offer launch services, said company president Zhang Qingwei.
Calling the co-operative project the "largest commercial collaboration" between the mainland and Hong Kong, Chu claimed the new satellites will benefit every Chinese - and the Asia-Pacific region at large, by providing digital communication, remote learning and wide-band Internet access.
"For one thing, the Direct-to-Home TV, which is not available in Hong Kong but so in almost every part of developed countries, will be soon ready for every Hong Kong resident when the satellites are operational," he said.
For Zhang, the satellite project will not only bring customers for the Long March rockets, but also help propel the development of high technology in Hong Kong.
The management, making and marketing of the satellites will be all undertaken by the Hong Kong Satellite Technology Group (HKSTG), which was founded yesterday to include Chu's company, the CASC, the Beijing-based Sino Satellite Communications Co and IAI.
Hong Kong Satellite Technology Holdings Ltd will hold 70 per cent of the shares; with the rest held by the other three partners.
The group will invest US$350 million for the initial two satellites, Zhang said. But Chu estimated each of the satellites will cost US$200 million.
The demand for HKSTG's communication services is expected to intensify due to the retirement of the European and American communications satellites that are currently in service in China.
"By the year 2008, we will have positioned eight of the HKSAT series into space," he said.
Asked why it chose the Israeli company as a partner, Chu said technologically, the IAI is second to none in the world.
Israel's superior satellite technology, Hong Kong region's capital market and the Chinese companies' sound in-orbit and launch services seemed to have boosted Chu's confidence in grabbing a big market share in China and the Asia-Pacific region.
Hong Kong Firm Contracts to Purchase Communication Satellites From Israel Aircraft Industries
Satellites Will Be Used During 2008 Olympics In China
Ben-Gurion International Airport, Israel - Hong Kong Satellite Technology Group (HKSTG) and Israel Aircraft Industries Ltd. (IAI) signed a contract today for two commercial communication satellites. The ceremony took place in the Great Hall in Beijing.
HKSTG was formed in 2001 by a group of private Hong Kong investors. Partners in the venture include the China Aerospace Ltd. Science and Technology Group Corporation (CASC), Sino Satellite Communications Company Limited (Sinosat) and Israel Aircraft Industries (IAI).
HKSTG will provide communication services, particularly direct-to-home television services for the rapidly growing Asian market. The demand for HKSTG's Communication services is expected to intensify due to the retirement of other communication satellites that are currently in service. In addition, the new satellites will be used to support the 2008 Olympic games, which will be held in Beijing.
Moshe Keret, IAI's President said during the signing ceremony that, "this venture is a win-win situation for all the parties involved and that the program is based on a long term relationship. This venture is particularly satisfying because it validates IAI strategic decision to enter the space system market."
Each satellite in the HKSAT series includes 20 Ku band transponders designed to provide a 12-year service life. With 5500 Watts of power, the HKSAT series was designed as the ideal satellite constellation for providing direct TV broadcasting, digital communications, multi-media, Internet and other communication services. The contract allows HKSTG to purchase two HKSAT satellites from IAI's MBT Division, who is the prime contractor for the manufacture of the satellites. HKSAT satellites are based on IAI's successful AMOS series of communication satellites previously manufactured in Israel. Sinosat will provide ground service.
CASC will be used to launch the HKSAT satellites from the Xi Chang satellite Launch Center. The first satellite HKSAT-1 is scheduled to be launched in 2004, with the second satellite will being launched 18 months later.
HKSTG expects to launch 7 HKSAT satellites, which will position the company to be the premier direct TV serve provider in Asia.
Phoenix says China Unified Satellite Plan Delayed
Phoenix Satellite Television, sister company of Rupert Murdoch's Star TV, claims that China's plan to introduce a centralized satellite platform for foreign broadcasters has been delayed, probably until after the Chinese lunar New Year on February 12.
Phoenix's deputy chief executive officer N.K Leung said the delay might have been due to “administrative hurdles” but was not more specific. China last year announced plans to move all foreign satellite broadcasters to its Sinosat 1 satellite by January 1 to tighten controland censorship--over foreign broadcast content.
Behind the move to centralize foreign satellite broadcasts is China's State Administration of Radio, Film & Television (SARFT), which wants to place foreign satellite TV channels under its administration. SARFT said it wants to move all foreign satellite TV operators to one transmission platform for easier administration.
SARFT said it intends to charge each of the 27 foreign broadcasters US$100,000 a year for using Sinosat 1, which is the only satellite it operates. A number of media firms fear the new measure will allow China to switch off their TV signals at will. Sinosat 1 carries 24 C-band and 14 Ku-band transponders. It covers China and the Asia-Pacific regions, providing telecommunications, data transmission and TV broadcasting for its customers within its footprint. Sinosat 1 was launched successfully on July 18, 1998. The satellite provides a range of telecommunications services (including television, telephony, and inter-banking data transmission) covering all China, the Indo-Chinese peninsula, Indonesia and the Philippines.
Foreign broadcasters including Phoenix are generally limited to beaming their signals to luxury hotels and other special venues. These rules, however, are widely ignored by people who illegally install satellite dishes, and by a growing number of local cable operators. Issues that have yet to be resolved include how implementation costs will be shared and whether a company will be allowed to conduct its own marketing in China.
In mainland China, Phoenix beams three popular channels in Mandarin: the Chinese Channel, Movies Channel and CNE Channel. With the new license, Phoenix believes it could reach about 41 million households in China, eight million of which are in the southern Guangdong province.
Hong Kong-based Phoenix also provides programming to Taiwan and last August began airing programs in Taiwan under a license from Taiwan's broadcast authorities.
SARFT vice chief engineer Du Baichuan said that the central platform would set up passwords to eliminate illegal ground reception. Under the plan, licensed foreign satellite channels will transmit signals to the ground for unified reception and encryption by the platform before the signals are transmitted to designated luxury hotels and foreign communities via satellites.
Globecomm Wins $2.9 Million Contract for Radio Frequency System in Hong Kong
Chinese state-run satellite operator APT Satellite Company Ltd has awarded Globecomm Systems Inc. a US$2.9 million contract to provide a Radio Frequency System (RF system) for Tracking, Telemetry & Command (TT&C) and Uplink Services in Hong Kong.
Under the terms of the contract, Globecomm will design, install and commission a TT&C Earth Station with installation scheduled to begin in June 2002. Globecomm is a global supplier of end-to-end satellite-based communications solutions. APT is a wholly owned subsidiary of APT Satellite Holdings Limited and is a major satellite transponder services provider in the Asia Pacific region.
The RF system, which will work as an integrated part of APT's newly built Satellite Control Center Phase-2 in Hong Kong, will give APT improved control of its new satellite, Apstar 5 and Apstar 5B, resulting in the increase transponder capacities and new services including uplink and broadcasting services to its customers throughout the Asia Pacific region.
Globecomm's core business provides end-to-end satellite-based communications solutions. This business supplies ground segment systems and networks for satellite-based communications including hardware and software to support a wide range of satellite systems.
HK's Yes TV to Carry STAR Channels; Phoenix TV Inks Distribution Agreement With EchoStar
Yes Television (HK) Ltd will carry five channels of Star TV during the commercial trial of its Hong Kong pay-TV service under an agreement with News Corporation’s Star Group Ltd.
The service will begin this February and is expected to feature lifestyle, movie and music programs. Yes TV is one of three firms planning to launch a pay-TV service in competition with i-Cable Communications. CLP Holdings Ltd, an electric utility that controls 75 percent of Yes TV through its telecoms arm, CLP TeleCom, previously said it was reconsidering its stake in the pay-TV firm because of the tough market for the service in Hong Kong.
On the other hand, Phoenix Satellite TV Holdings has acquired a second distribution partner in the U.S. Phoenix has reached an agreement with Echostar Communications Corporation (operator of the Dish network) to distribute its content via Echostar’s networks. Phoenix Chairman Liu Changle said the distribution agreement will nearly double its subscribers in North America by adding add another seven to eight million customers to their North American channel, Phoenix North America Chinese Channel. Liu expects the operation to break even within one or two years because of the additional advertising revenues.
Phoenix's North American channel provides pay TV services to more than nine million customers in North America through its partnership with another U.S. satellite company, DirecTV. EchoStar and DirecTV are two of the largest satellite providers in the world and are widely expected to merge their operations within the year.
Discovery claims good response to NDS Interactive Technology
Discovery Networks Europe, which billed its Discovery Mastermind as the world's first interactive quiz, used over 20 interactive applications using NDS technology during 2001 and now plans to make interactive programming a key part of its strategy for widening its audience base and increasing revenues.
The NDS technology powered Mastermind that started in November 2001 on Discovery Networks culminates this week in Europe.
NDS, a News Corporation company claims to be a leading supplier of open conditional access software and interactive systems for the secure delivery of entertainment and information to television set-top boxes and personal computers. Discovery Networks Europe currently operates nine brands on ten channels. Mastermind allowed Sky digital viewers to answer multiple choice questions in real time on their remote control. According to host Magnus Magnusson, : "Thousands of Mastermind's viewers used to play along with the quiz and there were those who could answer every question. Discovery's new program has allowed these and many new viewers to play along with the program and have the chance to sit in that famous black chair; it creates a whole new dimension to the show by reaching out to the audience at home."
While the current Discovery Mastermind season winds up this week, the channel will also air a special viewer's final featuring the highest scoring viewers who played along at home.
Zee Tele arms to halve
MUMBAI: The board of directors of Zee Telefilms will meet in February 2002 to discuss a new restructuring plan.
According to company sources, the Zee Telefilms board is planning to reduce the number of subsidiaries from the current 23 to 11 or 12. The board will also consider appointing a consultant for the purpose.
"The company is planning to simplify its holding structure of various subsidiaries. We have already promised investors that the restructuring exercise will see a linear holding structure in future. Currently, we have active 23 subsidiaries in the group. We intend to bring the number down to 11 or 12," the source said.
The company is planning to expedite the restructuring exercise as several investors have complained about the company's complex structure.
"Many investors have complained to us about not understanding our holding structure. All consolidated subsidiaries will be under the three distinct businesses which include content and programming, access and education. All options are being considered from transferring assets to merging them into the parent. A detailed plan will be put up before the board. A final decision will be taken only then," the source added.
Company sources also say that the company will begin the exercise of uplinking some of its channels from India in the next few weeks. "The uplinking facility allowed to broadcasters from India will help in our restructuring exercise. Some entities were set up for the purpose of uplinking and other related activities," the source said.
A dealer at a leading foreign brokerage pointed out that the move is a step in the right direction. However, the company needs to do much more to change perceptions on transparency to attract investors.
"The Zee Group has a lot of cross-subsidiary transactions. One entity's expense is shown as an income of another. It is difficult for international and institutional investors to understand their reporting structure. The move to cut subsidies is positive but not enough," the dealer told ET.
The company management also informed analysts last week that advertising revenues will improve as currently only companies with export earnings were allowed to advertise on satellite channels.
T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 03/2002 20 January 2002 -
A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by TELE-satellite International
Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition
A S I A
STAR SELECT JOINS ADD PACKAGE
Pan-regional digital platform Arab Digital Distribution has signed an exclusive
carriage deal with Star TV’s regional bouquet Star Select. All of Star Select’s
11 channels will now be integrated into ADD’s three pay-TV packages: Al Awael
(Arabic), FirstNet (English) and Pehla (South Asian). Among the Star channels
to migrate to ADD are Star Movies, Star World, Granada UKTV, Sky News, Channel
[V] International, CNBC Europe, The History Channel, Fox Sports, Fox Kids, Nat
Geo Channel, Adventure One.
CHINA - HONG KONG
STAR TV AND YES TV IN JOINT VOD VENTURE
Regional satellite broadcaster Star TV and UK-based VoD operator Yes TV have
teamed up to put a package of five channels from Star’s bouquet on Yes TV’s
Hong Kong VoD trial service. After the deal with the News Corp-owned
broadcaster, Adventure One, Star Movies, Star World, Channel [V] and Phoenix
Chinese Channel will all be carried on the VoD service. The deal brings Nat
Geo’s Adventure One to HK for the first time. Yes TV’s VoD service is due to
begin in February 2002, mixing broadcast TV, true VoD, Internet access and
e-mail, in one service.
PANEL CALLS FOR EXTENSION OF DD SATELLITE COVERAGE
IN a bid to achieve 100 per cent coverage of DD National, the Working Group on
the Tenth Five Year Plan on Information and Broadcasting has suggested that a
bouquet of 20 DD channels in free-to-air mode in the Ku-band be provided
through the satellite distribution system. Ku-band is currently available for
value-added services and direct-to-home (DTH) broadcasting, but not for
terrestrial broadcasting. Currently, DD National reaches out to 89.1 per cent
of the population, and the quantum of investment required to cover the
remaining population would be prohibitively expensive. The group has said that
most of the uncovered areas are hilly and sparsely populated, with the
infrastructure facilities such as availability of power being very poor. The
operational and maintenance cost of terrestrial transmitters would be very
expensive. With the opening up of Ku-band, viewers would either be able to
receive satellite signals directly at their homes or through a mediator such as
cable operator. One option suggested by the group is to provide these set top
boxes to individual TV households in the uncovered areas by recovering 50 per
cent of the cost from the consumers. The investment required to increase the
present population coverage from 90 per cent to 95 per cent with a bouquet of
20 channels by the proposed satellite mode in Ku-band is estimated to be Rs 338
over a period of five years.
PAPUA PROVINCE TO GETS ITS OWN TV NETWORK
To celebrate its newly obtained autonomy, Papua province is launching its own
TV network, one of Indonesia’s first provincial broadcasting services. The
first day of Papua Television Network broadcasting is scheduled for February 5
and broadcasting will start in Jayapura, the capital of the province.
SKY NETWORK TV SIGNS UP E! INTERNATIONAL NETWORK
Sky Network Television has signed a carriage deal for E! Networks’ new 24-hour
international English-language channel: E! International Network. The new
entertainment channel, which is due to be launched by end of first quarter
2002, will be distributed by New Zealand’s pay-TV broadcaster in the basic tier
of its digital platform.
SKY TV SEEKS TO RESOLVE TECHNICAL PROBLEMS
According to a report in “Infotech”, Sky Television claims it has fixed most of
the bugs in its new digital interactive TV services but picture fade and
channel freeze are still causing problems. Spokesman Tony O’Brien said that the
problem was associated with “rain fade” caused by the “terrible” weather. Teams
from New Data Systems and interactive operating system specialists Open
Television were working on the problem with Sky staff. Subscribers could deal
with the “irritating” problem by unplugging power supply for 30 seconds and
plugging it in again. Bugs that had delayed channel switching and affected the
electronic programme guide had been fixed, Mr O’Brien said. About 300,000
people subscribe to the pay-TV operator’s digital service.
(Craigs comment the above report is typical garbage fed to the media, there has been no reports of improvement in fact some have suggested it's actually got worse!)
GOVERNMENT GIVES GREEN LIGHT FOR PRIVATE TV CHANNELS
The federal cabinet on January 16 approved an ordinance allowing establishment
of TV channels in private sector. The cabinet meeting, approved the draft of
PEMRA Ordinance 2002, allowing the setting up of Pakistan Electronic Media
Regulatory Authority. The authority will be responsible for regulating the
establishment and operation of all broadcast stations including radio and
television and cable television in the country. It will generate resources
through licensing, fee and subscription. A licence will not be granted to a
person who is not a citizen of Pakistan, or resident in Pakistan, a foreign
company established under the laws of any foreign government or a company, the
majority of whose shares are owned or controlled by foreign nationals or
companies whose management or control is vested in foreign nationals or
No site update its Sunday.
Garage sale over made no real dent in the amount of junk there is still heaps left over. Oh well we made $900, people who come to garage sales seem to be the stingiest around they seem to be on another planet when it comes to pricing for stuff. You put a $20 sticker on something and they won't pay any more than $5. Mind you these people do the rounds every weekend sooner or later they get whatever item they were after at the price they wanted. One idiot offerd $20 for the 3.7M cband dish which wasn't even for sale.
Gerry at www.digisatnz.tv tells me they have the GWe-2100 receivers in stock (20 of them) see their site for details and pricing.
Satfacts page has had an update
From my Emails & ICQ
From Joe Gallo
Report of 2 WWF Wrestling feeds
Tuesday afternoon at around 3:30 pm AEST. It ended up being a
telecast of WWF RAW, which went for about 2 hours. Much of it was spent
advertising some Pay-per-View event coming up next weekend. Pas 2 3992V Sr 26470 on 'Channel 3' (the same bouquet as Fox News, which comes up as 'Channel 5'.)
Friday feed: was "WWF Metal" on 3992V 26470 (Channel 3) at around 3:00 pm (AEDST).
From Chris Pickstock 18/01/02
All 13 channels of TARBS on 12526 H (Pas 8) are currently FTA including ESPN sports and CNN
(Craigs comment, various rumours are circulating amongst dealers of things not being so well at TARBS, remember what happend to the last Pay tv provider who went FTA due to various problems, Boomerang was the name and the didn't come back.)
From the Dish
Optus B1 12456 V "TV 1 TXT had been fixed" TXT pid 582
Intelsat 804 64E 3921 R "Uganda TV" has left
Sorry nothing for today
Sorry about no update yesterday, more important to get things cleaned out packed and sold at our garage sale this weekend we advertisesd it for this Saturday, but as usual you get the bargain hunters wanting to be in first we already sold $200 worth of stuff Thursday afternoon. I am typeing up most of this Thursday night so I have a headstart on Fridays update, don't worry you never miss anything the Thursday stuff is just condensed into the Friday Edition.
TVNZ on B1 appears to have fixed Teletext on TVNZ TV1 (12456 V) so check it and see if you can decode it now if you can/can't let me or Bob know about it.
From my Emails & ICQ
From David Pemberton
APTN on ASIASAT 2 3799H has gone back into NDS encryption today.No longer FTA.
(Craigs comment, are you sure its NDS they are using?)
Several channels were free to air 16-1-02 on Tarbs Pas-8 166*E
12526H S/R 28067 3/4.They advise a new Russian ch.will be on soon.
OPT = National Russian Television.
I think Swiss Radio on Asat.2 has gone?
From John Harrison 16/1/02
Currently showing on B1, atn digital freq 12397H sr 7200 fec 3/4 nbc from the states
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 12526 H All TV channels in the TARBS mux are fta.
Superbird C 144E 12699 V "FTV News Channel" has started on Sr 4150, Fec 7/8, Vpid 33Apid 34.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 3820 V "SpeedCast (internet service)" has started on, Sr 27500, Fec 3/4.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "Fashion TV" is now encrypted.
Telkom 1 108E 3496 H BBC World has replaced the Global TV tests on ,PIDs 60/61. All channels in this mux are in clear again.
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3799 H "APTN Asia" is mainly encrypted again.
Thaicom 3 78.5E Prime TV has replaced PTV Channel 3 on 3608 V, MPEG-2/clear, SR 3333, Fec 3/4, PIDs 308/256, 17:00-01:30 PST, time sharing with PTV News and PTV World.
Intelsat 804 64E 3669 R All channels in the TV Africa mux are now encrypted in Videoguard.
Intelsat Successfully Expands Digital Multimedia Service in French Polynesia
Intelsat Global Sales & Marketing Ltd., today announced that it successfully upgraded the existing Tahiti Nui Satellite bouquet in partnership with the Office des Postes et Telecommunications of French Polynesia (OPT) and France Telecom's broadcast services division, GlobeCast. The expanded bouquet, which has been increased by an additional 72 MHz, now provides customers in French Polynesia with 23 direct-to-home (DTH) channels and four radio channels. The existing 72 MHz Ku-band video service, provided to OPT since June of 2000 on the Intelsat 701 satellite, was comprised of 12 video and three radio channels.
This digital service bouquet simultaneously transmits video, IP and DTH services to all 118 islands constituting French Polynesia. This is the first digital DTH service dedicated to French and English programming in the area that mixes video and Internet services in a single platform, and it reaches an audience of 10,000 subscribers.
"We are very pleased with the high service quality, reliability and technical customer support that Intelsat provided for us in this joint effort with OPT and GlobeCast," said Geffry Salmon, OPT Managing Director. "The Pacific Island community is difficult to reach geographically, and Intelsat effectively provides the global coverage and the know-how we require to make our communications a success."
Speaking at the Pacific Telecommunications Conference being held here this week, John Stanton, President of Intelsat Global Sales & Marketing Ltd., added, "The completion of the upgrade of the Tahiti Nui satellite bouquet is a landmark achievement for Intelsat since this is the first service of its kind being provided in the Pacific island region, and it showcases the effectiveness of our global reach. We will continue striving to pioneer new and complete global connectivity solutions to serve the needs of our customers worldwide."
This multimedia solution complements OPT's existing domestic satellite network, Polysat, which has been operating on the Intelsat 702 satellite since 1998. Currently, French Polynesia is connected to the world through capacity on three Intelsat satellites, and has used Intelsat solutions for its domestic and international Internet, voice, data and occasional-use TV needs.
Panamsat reports 2001 results, raises EPS forecast
PanAmSat Corporation, which claims to be the premier provider of global video and data broadcasting services via satellite, has reported total revenues of $870.1 million for 2001.
Earnings before net interest expense, income taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) were $580.1 million, or 67 per cent of revenues; and earnings per share (EPS) were $0.20. The total revenue was $1.024 billion for the year ended 31 December, 2000. The decrease in revenue has been attributed to the $219.2 million of new outright sales and sales-type lease revenues recorded during the year ended 31 December, 2000 compared to $45.5 million of new sales-type lease revenues recorded during the same period in 2001. Operating lease revenues for 2001 were $802.2 million, a 2.8 per cent increase over operating lease revenues of $780.3 million in 2000.
Total revenues for the fourth quarter ended 31 December, 2001 were $203.7 million compared to revenues of $202.9 million for the fourth quarter of 2000; EBITDA was $139.3 million compared to $136.2 million for the same period in 2000. The increase in EBITDA was principally due to a decrease in direct operating costs and selling, general and administrative costs, partially offset by severance expenses. Operating lease revenues increased by 0.5 per cent to $197.7 million or 97 per cent of total revenues for the fourth quarter of 2001, compared to $196.7 million for the same period in 2000.
As of December 31, 2001, PanAmSat had contracts for satellite services representing future payments (backlog) of approximately $5.84 billion, compared to approximately $5.85 billion, as of September 30, 2001.
Speaking on this president and CEO Panamsat Joe Wright said, “Operating lease revenues for 2001 were the highest in the company’s history, and they increased during a tough growth year in our industry. The higher operating revenues were primarily due to increases in our direct-to-home and network services, and we continued to see strong demand for our domestic video neighborhood among premier entertainment and media customers."
Forecast for 2002
The company expects total revenues for the first quarter of 2002 to range from $200 to $205 million, with no new sales or sales-type leases; EBITDA margins would continue to increase and be above 70 per cent and EPS would range between $0.08 and $0.11 per share. The company said that in 2002 total revenues would range between $790 and $825 million, with no new sales or sales-type leases, and EBITDA margins would be above the 70 per cent level.
Some significant achievements in 2001:
1. The signing of new 10-year, multi-transponder contracts with HBO and Turner Broadcasting System. The long-term arrangements, signed in January 2001, ensure the delivery of CNN, TNT, HBO and Cinemax through 2015.
2. Warner Bros. selected PanAmSat’s Galaxy IVR spacecraft as the new vehicle for the digital distribution of The WB Television Network and Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution services.
3. The signing of new long-term sales agreements with Viacom’s Showtime and Black Entertainment Television (BET) in late November for follow-on service on a Galaxy V replacement spacecraft in 2005. The agreements renewed Viacom’s position on the Galaxy system through 2017.
With this agreement, PanAmSat continues providing long-term program distribution to all three major U.S.-based global entertainment companies.
4. The successful launch and subsequent service commencement of the PAS-10 satellite in July to replace PAS-4 in a prime orbital slot above the Indian Ocean. Since the launch, almost all of the available capacity on PAS-10 has been sold.
For more detailed information about the company's financial guidance and trends visit www.panamsat.com.
Insat-3C to be finally launched on 23 January
The much-delayed Indian satellite Insat-3C is now all set for a 23 January liftoff.
According to satellite launch partner Arianespace, the Ariane 4 rocket, which will be used for Flight 147 is now ready, following the integration of Insat-3C atop the vehicle. Final checkout of the spacecraft and launcher are now underway, on schedule, for the 23 January launch, the space agency reports.
Insat-3C will be the eighth Indian satellite boosted into orbit by Europe's Ariane launcher, and it will provide telecommunications and TV transmission services for the Indian subcontinent. Last week, Isro chairman K Kasturirangan had said that the launch window of Insat-3C will open on 22 January, although he did not give any definite dates about the actual launch.
Insat-3C will be launched from Kourou in French Guyana. The satellite was earlier scheduled for launch in November 2001 on an Ariane-5 rocket but after a flight failure, the launch vehicle was changed to an Ariane-4 rocket. The satellite was then to be launched on 16 January, but last minute preparations pushed the launch date further ahead. If all goes well, India will now have Insat-3C in orbit within the next week.
VSNL to set up teleports in Delhi, Mumbai by March
VSNL is setting up a teleport each in Mumbai and Delhi, two main markets for uplinking of television channels.
As a step in this direction, the state-owned company is entering into an agreement with Thailand-based Shin Satellite to uplink TV channels from India to the Thaicom satellite. Till now, VSNL used to provide uplinking facilities only via Intelsat and Insat.
?We will be setting up our teleports in Mumbai and Delhi by March, 2002. We have arrived at an in-principle understanding with Shin Satellite for uplinking channels from the country to the Thaicom satellite,” said KP Tiwari, director, operations, VSNL. Incidentally, broadcasters from Mumbai uplink from outside India due to the lack of proper facilities.
While VSNL will put in the resource for creating the uplinking facilities in the two cities, Thaicom will provide access to the satellite. The satellite space segment will continue to be in the domain of Shin Satellite, Mr Tiwari added.
VSNL is targeting the Marathi, Gujarati and Hindi language channels who will use the Thaicom satellite. Thaicom has more than 30 channels on its platform, most of which are regional language channels with head offices in Mumbai. Prominent among these are the channels from Entertainment Television Network, Reminiscient India Television and Alpha. “We see a strong demand for uplinking, particularly from Mumbai. We can also attract new channels through our centre, which will benefit Thaicom,” said Mr Tiwari.
VSNL has lost business on its existing and only teleport at Chennai to private players. Sun TV, Eenadu and Raj TV, who were VSNL’s main customers, have created their own uplinking centres. “Private broadcasters have established their own platform. We have been hurt but new channels are coming in,” said Mr Tiwari.
Minor technical upgradation is necessary before the uplinking centres get operational, said Mr Tiwari. VSNL already has the multi carrier per channel (MCPC) platform, specifically for uplinking purposes. It will make use of its existing antennae at its Mumbai and Delhi offices.
In a bid to make its services more competitive, VSNL has taken several initiatives including the removal of bank guarantees.
Now broadcasters have to only pay one month’s fee in advance and the rest in quarterly installments. The uplinking fee is Rs 15 lakh per channel per month, excluding playout facilities. “Being an independent player, we will be attractive to a host of broadcasters who do not have a teleport but plan to uplink from India,” said Mr Tiwari.
Indian DTH still uncertain
Despite its new Convergence Bill enacted last year (and due to be in place this mid-summer) India still does not see DTH transmission as a likely prospect for 2002, according to local reports.
The Indian government is said to be mulling over some sort of limit to the fee charged by cable operators for free-to-air channel distribution. A 2001 survey showed that cable was available in 33 million homes. The total number of TV homes in India is currently estimated at 70 million, leaving 37 million homes still in the target reach of the cable industry.
Even though the ban on the use of the Ku-band frequency was lifted over a year ago to enable DTH broadcasting, the government has not yet received any applications to offer DTH services. The issues keeping broadcasters away from DTH include the requirement to share revenue with the government, and the rule that no broadcasting or cable company can own more than 20 per-cent of the equity of a DTH provider.
Bargain Satellites: Bringing Earth Orbit Access to The Public
The Sputnik satellite was essentially a metal ball that bleeped, but it was succeeded by large and complex machines to map the Earth, haul in scientific data, relay "I Love Lucy," and ultimately enable the World Wide Web to live up to its name. Now that process has begun to reverse itself a bit as amateurs and experts alike strive to usher in a golden age of cheap, simple, and specialized satellites.
We've seen this before - rising from the humble abacus, huge computers filled many rooms until they shrank into desktop PCs, and now personal digital assistants. And the two worlds are destined to remain forever entwined. When Arthur C. Clarke proposed the communications satellite to readers of Wireless World in 1945, it seemed like a pipe dream, or rather a tube nightmare. Crews of astronauts would have been assigned to the mundane task of replacing fussy vacuum tubes aboard a mammoth vessel in geostationary orbit. Eyeing the costs associated with maintaining such an ambitious venture, Clarke conceded that his vision might be suitable for the distant time that is our present. Instead, William Shockley, Hohn Bardeen and Walter Brattain invented the transistor at Bell Telephone Laboratories a mere two years later. Thanks to further work at Bell Labs and the Hughes Corporation, Clarke would see communications satellites become part of daily life in a scant generation. They are so common that spotting them as they catch the sunlight has become a backyard hobby.
Looking far beyond the horizon, nanotechnology researchers aim to loose mite-sized probes into Earth orbit (and the cosmos beyond), gathered in what would appear to be dust clouds. Tiny machines operating on the molecular level would coordinate their specialized capabilities to fulfill challenging missions at a tiny fraction of the launch costs governments and corporations have to pay today.
Until then, you can look to your pocket for a vision of the future. In a trend that could quietly democratize space exploration more substantially than well-publicized space tourism jaunts, consumer electronics and the orbital hardware are merging again.
"The advances in commercial off the shelf electronics are very applicable and capable products to use in picosatellites (those weighing under 2.2 pounds, or 1 kilogram). For example, the processing capacity, power requirement and size of a Palm Pilot would make it a good processor for picosatellites," Dr. Robert Twiggs, director of Stanford University's Space System Development Laboratory, tells SPACE.com. And, in a neat technology feedback loop, mobile phones could themselves serve as space-based communications hubs. "The new wireless devices with some modifications can be used in picosatellites," Twiggs notes.
His colleague Lt. Col. Billy Smith, director of the PCsat program at the U.S. Naval Academy in Maryland, agrees. "Embedded computing advances are producing ever smaller and less-power-hungry computers and peripherals. These things will be godsends to student satellite projects such as ours. Look for a lot of Linux-based software on future satellites," Smith comments.
One of Stanford's greatest successes has been Sapphire, or the Stanford Audiophonic Photographic Infrared Experiment. While its infrared detector is a sophisticated piece of equipment developed by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Stanford University's mechanical engineering program, other items are straight off of a Christmas list. The onboard camera snapping dramatic photos of planet Earth is the Fotoman Plus black and white digital from Logitech. Students cracked the camera's flash out, figuring they probably wouldn't get much of a light bounce off of, say, all of western North America. The camera has its own JPEG compression and can store 32 pictures, but the team opted to use its CPU memory instead.
Sapphire is also equipped to give geography lessons from on high with a voice synthesizer (off the shelf from RC Systems) that's rigged to a transmitter. As it flies overhead, students with radios can tune in its monotone as it reads strings of text fed to it from ground control.
Another off-the-shelf satellite guru is Lt. Col. Billy Smith at the U.S. Naval Academy in Maryland. Instead of hitting administrators up for half a million dollars for an elaborate satellite program, his students, midshipmen, assembled a functioning satellite out of parts purchased from Radio Shack for under $50,000. The total price tag matches what's normally spent on an antenna system, which in this case was replaced by a metal measuring tape. And solar panels that can cost as much as a new car were shunned for those used to power telephones in remote locations.
If that sounds chintzy, you might be surprised at what the TV set-sized contraption achieved: the satellite was the first to report its location directly to the public using the Global Positioning System. That allows radio operators to bounce messages off of it, back down to Earth many miles away. The first word came into Maryland from Qatar, and since then users have included groups from such unlikely groups as sNew Zealand cross-country hikers.
"We hope to fly a satellite every other year from here on out. The plan is to take the experience and knowledge gained from finished projects and apply it to ever more ambitious and challenging projects. Two or three satellites down the road, we hope to be building satellites which are credible scientific or engineering efforts in their own right, rather than just student projects," Smith says. "I anticipate that we will find our niche in flying non-space rated components and establishing space-applications heritage for those which work."
Since satellite building hasn't advanced to the point of organized student competitions like there are for robotics, know-how spreads from institution to institution like wildfire, advancing all efforts at once. "There is obviously lots of technology becoming available that will make satellites more capable and cost effective. Qualifying technologies for these applications is a good way for students and amateurs to reduce costs of microsat subsystems," notes Arno Ledebuhr of the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory. Two particularly important components of a satellite project, according to Ledbuhr, are processors and rechargeable batteries.
Not to mention screws. Smith's team carefully tests ordinary items to make sure they are spaceworthy. The experience can be more eye opening than any textbook. "I'll never forget the expression on one student's face after spending 45 minutes with our aerospace structures expert doing the analysis necessary just in deciding which screw to use to bolt on the outer plates," Smith recalls. "This project exposed our students to the myriad of hidden, mundane (but absolutely crucial) exacting and detailed activities that make up real engineering but seldom if ever make it into the classroom."
And engineering can be stripped down to something as basic as a disco ball and still produce a scientifically useful result, as proven by the Starshine Project, an effort involving 30,000 students from 26 countries and centered on small spheres covered with mirrors. Advanced students tooled the mirrors while others polished them, all of whom learned to how to track the satellites, especially when they make transits visible to the naked eye. Using nothing more than sunlight reflected by the fanciful Starshine spacecraft, scientists have been able to measure things as varied as upper atmosphere density and the orbital decay rate of satellites. Succeeding Starshine satellites will have more complex components, however.
If all of this has a ham radio hobbyist feel to it, there's a reason. Ham operators have been at the forefront of satellite building for 40 years. In 1961, when Sputnik was still a hot topic, the hobbyists' OSCAR 1 (Orbiting Satellite Carrying Amateur Radio) flew piggyback into space with an Air Force satellite. Just over a decade later, AMSAT-OSCAR 6 (an amateur satellite built by Americans, Australians, and Germans) was the first to show that Dopplar locators could be used to aid search and rescue efforts, and relay medical data from remote areas.
But some of the current amateur programs are eager to go further than those pioneers ever dreamed.
Stanford and its partner California Polytechnic State University are focussing on developing the CubeSat program. These four inch cubes could carry small payloads and perhaps fly in formation. Twigg expects the picosatellites to carry instruments to measure the magnetosphere and radiation levels, and to test basic hardware like expandable solar panels. "We expect in the near future to be flying biological experiments," Twiggs said.
Look for mission concepts to multiply exponentially. Several Universities across the world have already hopped on the CubeSat bandwagon, and private companies are offering services based on little boxes, even if sometimes for such mundane purposes as using them as urns to carry ashes to space for burial.
For the living, content to stay on Earth for a while longer, low Earth orbit (LEO) isn't the limit, either. "I believe it would be very feasible to start with CubeSat lunar flyby and return by the earth missions. I could see delivering a constellation of CubeSats to be put into LEO orbit around Mars for atmospheric measurements," remarks Twigg. "Why not find some missions that could send CubeSats into deep space but with earth flybys every few years? Imagine grade school children assisting building a CubeSat and getting measurements from it every few years as it comes back by the earth."
More ambitious still might be sending a student project to touch the dust of another world. "We would certainly like to do probes and landers. Some may fail, but in an educational program, failure of a mission is not a failure in learning. Failures in mission can enhance learning," Twiggs observes. "Even short missions in low earth LEO that reentered within 6 months - 2 years could be tremendous learning experiences for students."
Such wild adventures might draw upon many schools, each contributing a specialized bit of hardware or software, or mission control responsibilities. That would give many more students a sense of ownership over a mission than smaller, individual projects, Twiggs said.
For all of their potential achievements, learning is still the emphasis for most student satellite programs, and many amateur ones. This is especially true since many alumnae will be working for military, NASA and corporate programs in short order, and hitting the ground running.
Midshipmen in the Department of Aerospace Engineering at the Naval Academy are required to learn about spacecraft designs in their first year, Smith said. It's a good way to pull together mathematics, science, and engineering. But despite the ability, creativity, and enthusiasm students displayed, "for many years, the design experience was limited to paper studies," Smith recalled. The Academy's Small Satellite Program now gives midshipmen hands-on experience with building and testing space hardware, and networks them with other students and space professionals, and teaches them about the bureaucracies involved in a launch.
And there are intermediate steps useful for even high school students, Twiggs observed.
CricketSats consisting of 35mm film cans flown by party balloons and soda CanSats dropped with parachutes from airplanes can cost between $15 and $250 and still perform worthy experiments using processors and two-way communications.
Balloons and airplanes sound mighty friendly when one considers that launches into space can cost up to $10,000 per pound. In truth, it was the launch that made Sputnik such a news item - it meant that the Soviets had advanced missile capabilities. So far, the student projects have piggybacked on generous government programs, but both Twiggs and Smith are investigating the possibilities of one day conducting student launches.
In the meantime, Smith advises, make satellites as if your uncle were Flash Gordon. You'll still come out ahead.
"Just build it, even if you don't expect to ever see it fly," Smith adds. "Your students will benefit mightily from the experience, even if your satellite never leaves the campus."
Sorry No time for a site update today, setting up the garage sale ...Back Friday
Thank you to all those that showed up in the chatroom, a pity it was a bit laggy. I have not got onto installing the new message forum yet as I have been busy doing more packing. That's also why some days the site updates will be a bit late. Moving date is in 4 weeks time. We are having big garage sale this weekend so hopefully will get rid of plenty of junk. No I am not selling any sat gear. It seems Mediasats Thai TV 5 service has switched off as planned. That means no more Thai TV for NZ and parts of the Pacific that could get it. Not sure but to get it FTA off KU on Pas 8 in NZ it would need 3.7M and upwards size ku rated dish. Any KU PAS 8 reports from NZ readers? Will keep the reports private if you wish, its just for my records when people ask what size dish they would need. More to the point any TARBS subscribers in NZ?
From my Emails & ICQ
From Bill Richards
Thai TV5 has left Mediasat
Only Colour Bars there now.
From Chris Pickstock
Yes, it is just colour bars at the moment (6.35 pm SA time)
It is still available FTA on Pas 8, 12727H ( I think) within the TARBS mux.
TARBS grabbed Thai Tv and Turkey TV so I would expect TRT to also disappear.
From David Pemberton
THAI TV 5 has now gone from 12336V on OPTUS B3 replaced by test card.
The service now only on PAS 8 12726H.
hi how are you going ive got a pas2 and i always look on your website to check the latest feeds. Your site has been quiet for pas2 feeds during the last couple of weeks, but with the Australian Open and the VB series happening im sure there are feeds for these events somewhere.
Anyway ive tried 3899 V 11999 for the aussie open but i get no signal, please can you try to tell me where the feed for the aussie open is?
Also on your website Steve McClark asks where the Soccer feeds have gone that used to appear via the BT feeds on Pas 2, i also used to watch the matches, once again can you try to find whats happened to these feeds.
Craigs comment, I think I saw somewhere that the Aussie Open will be on Star Sports have a look there)
From the Dish
Optus B3 156E 12336 V "Thai TV Global Network" has left, replaced by a test card.(to be replaced by HRT croatia pay channel?)
Pas 2 169E 12730 V "Tests here 1.5, 2,4,6,8 Mbit test" Sr 24600, Fec 3/4 (North East Asia Beam)
Pas 8 166E 12381 V "SBN" Sr 4285 Fec 3/4
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H All channels are now encrypted, except Metro TV and Fashion TV.
Telkom 1 108E 3496 H All channels are now encrypted.
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H "TVRI, MTV Asia and TV 5 Asie" have left.
India to launch Insat 3-C satellite next week: Kasturirangan
India will launch its third generation communication satellite Insat-3C between January 21 and 26 from Kourou in French Guyana, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) Chairman K. Kasturirangan said Monday.
The Insat-3C will augment the Indian National Satellite (Insat), a multi-purpose space system for communication, broadcasting and meteorological services.
"The INSAT-3C communication satellite will have 24 normal C-band transponders, two S-band transponders and a S-band Mobile Satellite Service (MSS) transponder," Kasturirangan told reporters.
He said Insat-3C, the second satellite of the third generation Insat series, would continue the services of the second generation Insats that were nearing the end of their life.
The first satellite, Insat-3B was launched in March 2000. The ISRO chief said the Insat-3A would be ready by this year and Insat-3D and 3E by next year.
The Insat-3C satellite was initially scheduled for a launch last September but that was put off due to a technical snag.
The latest satellite will be initially placed in an elliptical orbit of 200 km by 36,000 km by the French commercial space firm Arianne Space before ISRO'S Master Control Facility at Hassan in Karnataka takes over.
The ISRO is also getting ready to launch its weather satellite, Metsat, by the middle of this year, Kasturirangan said, adding that a mechanism for immediate alert in case of disasters was also being set up.
The Metsat would be launched from Sriharikota using India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and positioned in the geo-stationary orbit. The Rs.750 million satellite will have a design life of five years.
The ISRO chairman said he was looking forward to the signing of an international charter on collaboration on disaster management through remote sensing space capabilities, with the French, European and Canadian space agencies.
"This agreement will help India in predicting natural disasters such as cyclones, earthquakes and drought and gauging their scale to mitigate their impact."
He said plans were afoot to set up a space application centre in India's northeast to map the area and predict natural disasters in the region through remote sensing satellites.
Kasturirangan said ISRO was exploring the possibility of selling space on the PSLV to other countries.
--Indo-Asian News Service dg/mk
ISRO to launch Insat-3 next week
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) proposes to launch an exclusive satellite next year for meteorological services like monsoon monitoring, ISRO chairman K Kasturirangan said.
The Met-Sat, which is getting ready, will be the first such satellite which will be utilised only for weather predictions, cyclones and rainfall. This satellite is one among five satellites to be launched by ISRO during 2002-03.
Speaking about the important missions of the year, he said Insat-3A is slated for launch in the third quarter while Insat-3E will be in orbit early next year. Insat-3D will be launched in the later part of the next year. Insat-3B was launched in March 2000. Insat-3C already at the launch pad in Kourou, French Guyana, will be put into orbit any time next week. With this Insat-3 series would be complete.
Insat-3C with a mission life of 12 years will help to continue the services of Insat-2DT and Insat-2C, which are nearing the end of their lifespan, besides improving and augmenting Insat-system capacity.
According to Dr Kasturirangan, another satellite Astr0-Sat would be launched for astronomical observations especially to study the earth’s magnetic field, black holes and the solar system. All astronomical observatories and research institutions will be involved in this project.
A space application centre would also be set up in the north-east for utilising remote sensing capabilities, especially for soil erosion and bamboo clusters, as also for tele-medicine.
Hungry for TV, Kabul makes the satellite dish its own
The metal sheeting was constructed for another time, another place to become cans of creamy dessert topping. But in Kabul, where raw materials are scarce and ingenuity abundant, entrepreneurs have given it a different identity. Sheets stamped with the familiar ‘‘Reddi-wip’’ logo so they could become whipped-topping canisters are instead being enlisted as metal for new satellite dishes.
On the streets of Kabul, men with tools, metal scraps and customers who dream of a horn of entertainment plenty are building dishes at a frenetic pace, helping restore popular culture connections severed in 1996 by the draconian Taliban.
?‘All the people of Kabul are interested in these. They’ve suffered in the last five years and haven’t been allowed to see such things,’’ said Zalmay Horiakhail, a member of Kabul’s new police force. Makeshift dishes cost from $15 to 50 depending on their size.
?‘Bigger dish, more channels,’’ said Mirwais Samandari, the grinning assistant manager of a factory. At home, he has three dishes bringing in a total 273 channels from Europe, Asia and America.
?‘For a family, India is the best,’’ Samandari said. ‘‘Those others sometimes have people with no clothes. India is in the region and more like our culture.’’ (Agencies)
(Craigs comment, 273 channels on a dish made out of tin cans, Good on them!)
From [e-bna] Gerald Brown's e-broadcastnewsasia vol 8 no 2
subscribe here email@example.com
Indonesia: Any day now LATIVI, a new privately-owned TV Network in Indonesia will join the crowded market. The station will initially cover the capital of Jakarta, with nationwide coverage later in 2002. Programming in both English and Bahasa Indonesian includes approximately 35 per cent of airtime devoted to news from newly-built studios and facilities in LATIVI Centre in Pulo Gadung. Newsroom automation is from ENPS says Adolf Posumah , LATIVI's General Manager of News. Implementation and ongoing support of ENPS at LATIVI is being managed by Singapore-based Techtel (SE Asia) Pte Ltd through Roscor Indonesia, the primary systems integrator. Broadcast Automation is Odetics Broadcast's AIRO System, and LATIVI is one of the first stations globally to have installed Grass Valley's new Zodak digital production switcher that only started shipping to customers in November. In recent months, TV7 and Trans TV have started and another new outlet Global TV has been neck and neck with Lativi to get on air.... The Indonesian Advertising Agencies Association chairman, RTS Masli, says the total advertising industry was expected to grow by 30 percent in 2002 from the current Rp 9.717 trillion (US$934.3 million). Sixty two percent of last year's total advertising (Rp 7.889 trillion) went to TV. The figure is predicted to grow to Rp 12.06 trillion next year. The networks are mostly owned by conglomerates such as the Bimantara group, which is the major shareholder in RCTI, Trans TV, MetroTV and Global TV. TV7 is owned by the Kompas-Gramedia Group and ANteve by the Bakrie group. Indosiar is partly owned by the Salim group, SCTV by the Rajawali group and TPI by the Citra group, while Lativi belongs to the A. Latief corporation. Indonesia is the world's largest Muslim country. Transmissions are divided between VHF and UHF: TVRI- Televisi Republik Indonesia is Ch 6 and TVRI Programma 2- TVRI's English News Service is on Ch 7. The UHFers are Trans TV - PT. Televisi Transformasi Indonesia; TVRI Bandung - News Department TVRI Bandung; TPI - Televisi Pendidikan Indonesia; Indosiar - PT. Indosiar Visual Mandiri; RCTI Oke - PT. Rajawali Citra Televisi Indonesia; SCTV - PT.Surya Citra Televisi; ANteve - PT. Cakrawala Andalas Televisi; CITI TV-7 - PT. Duta Visual Nusantara (DVN) & Kompas Group; Global TV - PT. Global Informasi Bermutu; Lativi (ex PR TV) - PT Lativi Media Karya (ex PT. Pasaraya Mediakarya) and Metro TV - PT Media Televisi Indonesia.
(Craigs comment, We might see this come on PalapaC2?)
From [e-bna] Gerald Brown's e-broadcastnewsasia vol 8 no 2
subscribe here firstname.lastname@example.org
Singapore: It lasted from just May to January. Lack of viewer loyalty and revenues forced the channel off the air. Welcome to the current TV climate in Singapore. Government owned, MediaCorp TV Group closed City TV one of its six FTA channels on Friday January 11th at the end of the day's transmissions. (Note:City TV was an out growth of the all-sports SportsCity channel). Staff were told on Wednesday, and by Saturday morning most had cleaned out their desks and out of work. City TV was meant to complement the main Mandarin service on Channel 8 with sports and Chinese entertainment. By visiting the channel's web site at (http://www.mediacorptv.com) today you would never know that City TV had ever existed except for a redirect page to ChannelNewsAsia which is picking up most of the sports output from the defunct channel for weekend screening in blocks between 1400 and 1900hrs and 0030 and 0230hrs. The Singapore Broadcasting Authority only last year opened up the city state to "competition" when the equally controlled, Singapore Press Holdings and its subsidiary, SPH MediaWorks rushed two new stations to air. And in return, MediaCorp was awarded a publishing license. Kenneth Tan, Chief Operating Officer of MediaCorp TV, said: "We've decided that we can best serve our viewers by carrying the two categories of programming, namely, sports and Chinese programs on our well-established, well-watched MediaCorp channels, while at the same time optimizing our costs of operations." He said MediaCorp still commanded a 75 percent share of total terrestrial TV viewership in Singapore, with its English and Chinese channels 5 and 8 being the most-watched channels. Familiar as I am with Singapore, it has never struck me as a "sporting oriented" society except for football and those sports where a wager commands an interest. Perhaps Singapore is not yet ready for dedicated sports TV channels and the reason for the ghost of a white elephant in City TV.
(Craigs comment, This could be good FTA sports via ChannelNewsasia channel!)
Live chat tonight in the chatroom 8.30pm Syd time and 9.PM NZ for those that want to get in early.
I did some playing with the Nokia and found on TVNZ TV 1 the teletext isn't working the auto pid for txt is 582, but if you manually change it to 583 then it works. So the info in the data stream appears to be incorect. That will be why some can't get text on TV1. TV2 teletext is working fine though on my Nokia.
Satfacts page updated
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock
3.45 pm SA time.
I've lost Imparja on B1 and also through Aurora on B3. All other channels are OK, including 7 Central
(Craigs comment, they must be still playing around with B1)
Steve McClark asks where the Soccer feeds have gone that used to appear via the BT feeds on Pas 2
(Craigs comment, I can't help with this have only seen them via I701)
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 12732 V Occasional NTL feeds on, Sr 24610, Fec 3/4, NE Asian beam.
Sinosat 1 110.5E The CBTV Sat muxes have left 12440 V and 12500 V.
ST 1 88E 3632 V All channels in the MMBN mux are now encrypted, except BBC World and the test card.
LMI 1 75E 3430 H The test card is now encrypted.
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H Jilin Satellite Channel and HeiLongJiang TV have left ,replaced by test cards, in clear.
Optus pay-TV via DSL
OPTUS is planning to deliver pay television over copper phone lines as part of an aggressive expansion of its consumer services.
A spokeswoman said a technical trial of television over DSL was successful last year, but deployment was not in "current business plans".
However, sources close to Optus said there were plans to offer a service in the 2002-03 financial year.
The sources said the trials used speeds of up to 4 m/bits per second.
Telecommunications analyst Paul Budde said the plan would shake up local broadband suppliers.
"It would be a fantastic thing for broadband. We would see some serious competition to Telstra," Mr Budde said.
Optus currently offers retail broadband over its cable network, Optus@Home.
The retail television-over-DSL project would be separate from the XYZed DSL network for business, and would be run by the consumer and multimedia (CMM) division.
This division is running commercial trials of its interactive television service, which is available for an additional fee to some Optus Vision subscribers. If the trial is a success, there will be a full commercial launch later this year.
The set-top box Optus is providing for interactive services includes a spare ethernet port that could be used to connect either a cable or ADSL modem.
Insiders said Optus was hoping to reduce installation costs by providing an all-in-one box for television and internet.
The television-over-DSL service will only be available up to 2.4km from an exchange.
Television over ADSL has never been available in Australia, although the TransACT network in Canberra offers television over VDSL, which runs at up to 55 m/bits per second. ADSL will support up to 6.1 m/bits per second.
Mr Budde said advances in video streaming would make 4 m/bits "more than sufficient".
Over the last few days various things have been noticed on B1, They seem to be adjusting the power levels of ABC Northern, it and Central 7 have been off at times. Abc Northern was at very high levels a couple of days ago. Not much else going on. I have trashed the old message forum and this will be replaced at the moment I am looking at the YABB gold forums software if you can think of something better or know of a decent place I can find a new free chatroom for the site then let me know. Many of the free chatrooms I have looked at are not suitable compared with the Parachat software we use now. There is a reasonable amount of news in the news section for a change.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Dave Keller
Since the woes with your ISP causing outages on your website. A mirror of
www.apsattv.com is now running at http://apsattv.bay.net.au This mirror is
updated at 06:00 and 18:00 daily. This server sits connects to the upstream
ISP (connect.com) at 10Mbit. Except for the server upgrade monday, the site
is up 24x7 (but now that i've said that it's likely to fallover).
(Craigs comment, wow thanks for that, everyone bookmark that as a backup if the main sites down. It isn't my ISP thats the problem it was with the host server in Australia the DNS software had crapped out.)
From Joe Gallo
Dammit Craig! Unable to confirm that FTV has left Asiasat2. Just checked it a minute ago and it’s still there in all its “98% quality” picture. It’s sickening to know that airspace can be wasted on such vacuous vanity. This is one station I would love TARBS to take away
(Craigs comment, I am sure all FTV fans will be pleased to hear that it's still running)
From M Chung
New channels at Pas 8 ku band, 12360 V 18000
TTV,CTV,CTS,PTV,SBN&CSN its Taiwan packages (Asia beam).
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 12360 V A new mux has started on, Sr 18000, Fec 5/6, PIDs 111/112-161/162, line-up: TTV, CTV, CTS and Scholar Business Network, .PTS and CSN (As mentioned a few days ago)
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3796 V "Fashion TV is still on" , Sr 2533, Fec3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256.
ST 1 88E 3632 V CTS, TTV, CTV and FTV News Channel are now encrypted.
Insat 2E 83E ETV Telugu, ETV Bangla, ETV Marathi, ETV Kannada, ETV Urdu, and the ETV Gujurati and ETV Oriya tests have left 3485 V (MPEG-2), replaced by ETV Uttar Pradesh tests, ETV Madya Pradesh tests, ETV Rajasthan tests, ETV Bihar tests and test cards.
Apstar 2R 76.5E 3796 V New APID for DD North-East : 256.
Intelsat 902 62E 4003 L "Simaye Azadi Iran National TV" has started on, Sr 6110, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256, NW zone beam.
New channel for news hungry Punjabis from Monday
Punjab Today, a 24 hour digital news channel hits the airwaves on Monday.
The new channel floated by STV Enterprises claims to be an attempt to bring Punjabis across India and those settled abroad closer by bringing news and events occurring in their home state in their mother tongue. STV chairman Jugal Jain says Punjab Today is just the first in line of a series of channels, which will be unleashed in the next six months. An Urdu channel for the state of Jammu and Kashmir is next on the cards.
Jain says Punjab Today will provide what other Punjabi channels have not done so far - coverage of local news and programming. The target viewership is 15 million Punjabis in over 100 countries, with the ultimate aim of reaching every Punjabi household around the globe. The Punjab Today team comprises senior professionals with a background in journalism, reporting, advertising sales and television software production. Former Hindustan Times staffer Avinash Singh is the COO of the channel, which will air content that has 80 per cent of news related to Punjab and the rest 20 per cent will cover areas like Udham Singh Nagar, Haryana, Himachal, J&K and other places where Punjabis have a presence.
Punjab Today will also feature other news-based programmes, including regular industry, agriculture, finance, development, and sports related content. There will also be current affairs shows, investigative features, employment news and human interest stories. STV has its own set of state-of-the-art studios and other infrastructure in Delhi, Jalandhar, Chandigarh and Mumbai. The nerve centre of newsgathering for Punjab would be Jalandhar.
(Craigs comment any ideas where this one is? Thaicom 3 is my pick on the asia beam .)
Sahara TV to launch 38 regional news channels
The Sahara India Group's ambitions to become a major media powerhouse was taken to a whole new level today as it announced plans to launch a bouquet of 38 news channels - a national news channel and 37 independent city-based regional news stations covering Uttar Pradesh & Uttranchal, Madhya Pradesh & Chattisgarh, Rajasthan, Bihar & Jharkhand, National Capital Region (NCR) and Mumbai.
With the launch of these 38 news channels, Sahara TV aims to focus on providing not only national and international news but also in-depth and high-quality city-based and regional news coverage in the respective states, an official release states. The system of local TV news stations is well established in the West but this must be a first where one network is launching so many news channels at one go.
The network is scheduled to launch in April and will be broadcast through the VSAT system being set up as part of the Sahara Net project. At the time of launch 1,400 VSATs will be in place and the number is expected to go up to 1,800 by the end of the year. Sahara TV expects to cover even smaller cities and towns by leveraging Sahara Net's VSAT network, bureaus for news gathering.
The capital intensive project envisages a major expansion on the manpower front as well. Official sources in the channel said project funding would be raised internally.
Announcing this, Subrata Roy Sahara, managing worker & chairman, Sahara India Pariwar, said: "Driven by the objective of spreading awareness in our mission of mass communication to all the people of India, the most distinctive aspect of Sahara TV's news channels will be to fulfill the ever-increasing demand for quality and comprehensive news coverage. This bouquet of 38 news channels will provide a major fillip not only to the Indian broadcasting industry but also to the 39 million cable and satellite viewers."
The bouquet will comprise local news channels for the following cities:
Lucknow, Bhopal, Jaipur, Patna, Mumbai, Delhi, Gorakhpur, Indore, Udaipur, Ranchi, Thane, Noida, Varanasi, Raipur, Kota, Bhagalpur, Vashi, Ghaziabad, Agra, Gwalior, Bikaner, Jamshedpur, Faridabad, Dehradun, Jabalpur, Jodhpur, Muzaffarpur, Gurgaon, Meerut, Ajmer, Dhanbad, Kanpur, Purnea, Bareilly, Chapra, Allahabad, Gaya
Newswise, while the main channel will be in Hindi, the network expects to roll out bulletins in English and Urdu as well. Sahara TV vice-president (publicity, promotions & PR) Priya Raj revealed that the main Hindi channel is planned to be a separate feed available alongside the individual city-specific news channels.
HK Govt/Pacific Digital -3: To Launch 20 Channels Feb '03
Pacific Digital Media (HK) Corporation has received permission from the Hong Kong Broadcasting Authority to delay the launch of its pay-TV services in the city.
Norman Leung, chairman of the Broadcasting Authority, said the delay was granted for commercial reasons related to an ongoing restructuring within Pacific Digital. Leung said the government accepted the revised schedule after taking into account Pacific Digital's commitment to roll out its pay TV service and its ability to deliver the revised offer.
Pacific Digital is one of Hong Kong’s three pay-TV license holders. It earlier missed a deadline to roll out its services in August 2001, prompting the Broadcasting Authority to call a HK$500,000 performance bond pledged by the company as a guarantee of its license obligations.
Under the new terms approved by the Broadcasting Authority, Pacific Digital will roll out its pay-TV services in three stages beginning in February. Pacific Digital will launch two channels on Feb. 23, 10 channels by August and a total of 20 channels by February 2003. It will conduct a soft launch of two channels next month. “Despite the delay, the total investment amounts and the performance bond that Pacific Digital has committed are unchanged," Leung said.
The other pay television license holder, Yes Television Asia, will roll out its six-channel pay TV service on February 22. The six channels are Star Movies, Star World, Venture (Singapore: VENM.SI-news) 1, CETV, Channel V and Phoenix Chinese Channel.
Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting, the satellite transmission unit of leading free-to-air broadcaster Television Broadcasts Ltd., is set to launch its pay TV service in August. Leung noted that the broadcasting authority had not received an application from Galaxy regarding the launch of its pay TV service. To prevent Galaxy from dominating the pay TV market, the government delayed the launch of its service until 18 months after the pay TV license was issued in February 2000.
South Korea To Launch First Satellite For Military Purposes In 2005
South Korea will launch its first military satellite in 2005, said the government and satellite operator KT Corporation in a joint announcement.
The Ministry of Information and Communication and KT Corporation signed a memorandum of understanding late last year to jointly launch and use Koreasat-5 (or Mugunghwa Satellite No. 5). South Korea has four in-orbit satellites, all used for non-military purposes such as communications, weather observation and scientific research.
The Ministry of Defense said that Koreasat-5 would be used 60 percent for commercial purposes and 40 percent for military tasks. Koreasat-5 will replace Koreasat-2, which is now obsolete. There is no Koreasat-4 satellite as the Korean word for the number four sounds similar to the Korean word for death.
Arianespace successfully launched Koreasat-3 in September 1999. The satellite weighed 2,800 kg at lift-off, and is equipped with 30 Ku-band and 3 Ka-band transponders. Its operational life is 15 years. Koreasat-3 is positioned at 116 degrees East, replacing Koreasat-1.
Koreasat-3 carries a total of 33 transponders, including 24 Ku-band ones, similar to the capacity of the two previous satellites. In particular, Koreasat-1 and 2 are confined to Korea in coverage while Koreasat-3 covers Southeast Asia with 12 of its 24 Ku-band transponders.
Koreasat-3 provides services such as multimedia, tele-medicine, tele-education, wideband information retrieval, super-speed satellite service between local area networks (LAN) and traffic information broadcasting.
Hughes Launches Satellite Education Initiative in India; Scouts for Asia-Pacific Partners
Broadband satellite network solutions provider Hughes Network Systems (HNS) has launched a global education initiative in India using its Direcway broadband satellite service.
The initiative is aimed at offering satellite based e-learning programs and provides a platform that would allow students to attend lectures and interact with faculty online. HNS is also pushing ahead with its “Spaceway” project in the Asia Pacific and is scouting for local partners (including India) for the required US$700-750 million funding.
Direcway is a leading broadband by satellite service provider for the consumer, small business and enterprise markets. Consumers have access to a variety of value-added solutions, all on a single platform, and backed by comprehensive support from HNS. In December 2001, HNS surpassed 100,000 subscribers for its Direcway service.
HNS chairman and CEO Pradman Kaul said this accomplishment was “another significant milestone that clearly demonstrates HNS' leadership in the satellite industry.” He also noted that there was a considerable broadband market for which Direcway is clearly a solution.
HNS, a unit of Hughes Electronics Corporation, is the world's largest provider of broadband satellite network solutions for businesses and consumers, with approximately 500,000 systems installed in more than 85 countries.
Speaking about Spaceway, Kaul said HNS was trying to line up partners in Asia Pacific but does not intend to fund those systems entirely. He said that the company expected to have a system operational in Asia Pacific by 2004. “We hope to have a financing structure in place in the next six to nine months," Kaul said.
"It is very clear that in the satellite space, to go to other parts of the world one must have local partners. Spaceway Asia Pacific would need partners from three or four countries," Kaul noted.
HNS pioneered the development of high-speed satellite Internet access services, which it markets globally under the DirecPC and Direcway brands. HNS is also a leading manufacturer of DirecTV satellite television receivers, having shipped over seven million as of 2001.
T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 02/2002 13 January 2002 -
A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by TELE-satellite International
Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited apsattv.com Edition
BSKYB ENDS DIGITAL BOX OFFER
Satellite broadcaster BskyB has ended its free set-top box scheme for viewers
who do not subscribe to its services. Until the end of December viewers could
get a free set-top box digital satellite receiver without subscribing to any
Sky channels. There was a £100 installation fee and viewers had to agree to
have their telephone connected to the box for at least 12 months to enable the
use of interactive services. Now “non-subscribers” will have to pay £215 plus
the £100 installation fee to get digital satellite equipment. BSkyB said it was
? commercial decision to withdraw the offer” since each new subscriber costs
BSkyB £237 including marketing costs. BSkyB declined to say how many people had
taken up the offer since it was introduced in October 1998 but analysts believe
it was about 25,000. There are no plans to end the free box offer for those
subscribing to BSkyB’s premium programme services.
(Craigs comment this is just there way of getting cheaply available receivers off the market now that NDS has been hacked)
A S I A
MGM NETWORKS AND ORBIT LAUNCH MOVIE CHANNEL
MGM Networks, a unit of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Inc., on January 8 announced that
it has forged an alliance with the Orbit satellite TV and radio network, the
Middle East's leading digital satellite platform, to launch a digital, 24-hour
MGM-branded movie channel in the region. The new MGM Movie Channel represents
the 15th foreign channel in which MGM holds an equity interest. Expected to
launch in March 2002, the MGM Movie Channel will initially be available on
Orbit's premium channel tier via a digital satellite feed across the Middle
East and North Africa. The round-the-clock channel will showcase many of MGM's
blockbuster titles and celebrated films. Orbit's current premium package
includes more than 50 services.
ABC TO INCREASE PROGRAMMING ON SATELLITE SERVICE
Public broadcaster ABC will increase the block of programming aired on its ABC
Asia Pacific DTH service to six hours from May. Currently, four-hour blocks of
programming are looped on the channel, which commenced broadcasting at the
beginning of this year.
AUSTAR AND OPTUS CONSIDER MERGER?
Pay-TV operator Austar is reportedly in talks with telecoms and pay-TV outfit
Optus over a possible merger. Austar is currently renegotiating its debt
facility with its banks, while Optus is under pressure to either merge or shut
its pay-TV operations. Optus is also keen to prevent leading pay-TV platform
Foxtel from gaining control of Austar’s subscribers, which are largely in
non-metropolitan areas and would complement both Foxtel’s and Optus’ urban
customer profile. Foxtel has 770,000 subscribers, while Austar has 432,000 and
Optus has 270,000.
CHINA - HONG KONG
TECH TV SIGNS BROADCASTING AND LICENSING DEAL
US-based TechTV has signed a broadcast and licensing deal with Chinese
production outfit Sun Television Cybernetworks Holdings. The deal, which is due
to run for three years, will see Sun TV providing localised, Mandarin-language
versions of TechTV programming to viewers in China, Hong Kong and Macau,
starting in the first quarter of 2002. Sun TV will have full access to
broadcast the US technology-themed channel and distributor’s content on its own
satellite channels and distribute the programming throughout the territory. The
deal strengthens TechTV’s Far Eastern presence, having already launched a
24-hour satellite channel on the AsiaSat3 satellite last year, with further
carriage agreements inked in Malaysia, New Zealand and Korea. Since the
satellite launch, TechTV has acted as a pass-through channel or as a framework
for localised channels comprising local and TechTV-originated programming.
Meanwhile, Sun TV has been busy adapting A&E’s history and biography programmes
into Mandarin, while also producing its own content. The company also operates
the Macau Satellite TV Travel Channel.
NHK AND ISB TO COVER WINTER OLYMPICS
Public broadcaster NHK has teamed up with International Sports Broadcasting
(ISB) to co-produce coverage of the Salt Lake Winter Olympics in February. The
venture with ISB the host broadcasters of the event will see the Japanese
broadcaster using highdefinition digital satellite broadcasting (HDTV) to cover
events such as ski jumping, speed skating, figure skating and ice hockey. As
part of the deal, NHK will replace six standard-definition cameras with 10 HDTV
dedicated cameras. NBC has also agreed to participate in the project, which
will allow US viewers to watch the Olympic broadcast for the first time in
HDTV. NHK will broadcast a total of 260 hours of coverage from the Olympics.
UBC EXPECTS BETTER RESULTS IN 2002
Leading pay-TV operator UBC has reaffirmed its forecast of 16-18% increase in
2001 revenues, and said it expects losses to narrow further through 2002. Its
digital DTH service had 406,000 subscribers at the end of last year, up nearly
17,000 in the quarter, its highest quarterly growth since the first quarter of
2000. Churn remained at 0.9% on a monthly basis.
CHANNEL 11 GETS WORLD CUP TV RIGHTS
Channel 11 has secured rights to all 64 games of the 2002 soccer World Cup from
rights broker Dhospak. Channel 11 will pay Baht13 million for the rights to
broadcast 56 of the games live and show highlights of the others. The
front-runner for the rights had been TV Pool, a consortium of Channels 3, 5 and
7, but it would not agree to Dhospak’s demand that all games air without
No update today Sunday and I have to get more packing done.
Due to a problem with the host ISP the server has been down for quite some time, hopefully the problem is fixed. Anyway you get 2 DAYS of sites updates so be sure to check all yesterdays stuff as well.
I won't say anything about the cricket ;-)
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock
B1, 12397 H, Sr 7200, Vpid 308, Apid 256
C7 Sport feed of one day match, NSW v SA from Coffs Harbour
From Andrew Harrison
Re Telkom 1 at 108E
National Geographic FTA here
From the Dish
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3796 V "Fashion TV" has left (such a tragic loss can anyone confirm?)
Sahara to launch regional news channels
NEW DELHI: Subroto Roy promoted Sahara India Group is about to launch a bouquet of regional news channels in Hindi, in line with plans to expand its presence in the media industry.
The proposed bouquet of channels, expected to become operational from April this year, will also have programming in English and Urdu and will be downlinked in several north Indian centres including Noida (Uttar Pradesh), Delhi, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, industry sources said in New Delhi on Friday.
Sahara India is expected to announce these plans shortly, but despite repeated attempts, no company official could be reached for comments.
According to industry sources, the initial investment in launching this bouquet of channels would be in excess of Rs 50 crore, funded internally from the group's accruals and the proposed channels would extensively utilise Sahara's vast VSAT (very small aperture terminal) network to expand thier reach.
The Group is also expected to recruit fresh editorial talent for this bouquet, with industry sources putting the number of new people at over 300.
According to information available with the Centre for Monitoring the Indian Economy, the existing satellite television venture from Sahara, called Sahara TV, has been promoted through the group's listed arm Sahara India Media Communication.
Sources said initially the Group had planned to go on air with this channel bouquet in November last year and that it conducted an extensive market research study for over an year before embarking on this project.
According to industry estimates, the Indian news channel market is expanding exponentially, specially for Hindi and regional language programming. Existing 24-hour news channels include STAR News, ZEE News and India Today Group's Aaj Tak besides BBC and CNN news.
As per CMIE, Sahara India Media Communication had earmarked Rs 200 crore investment for expansion including setting up of an academy, film and media club in July last year.
Besides media, the Sahara Group is into a host of other activities including para banking, infrastructure and housing, aviation and consumer products.
CNN/SI to Shut Down
With a proposed National Basketball Association channel ready to take its place, AOL Time Warner Inc.’s CNN/SI sports-news service will shut down operations later this year.
Even if plans for a co-owned AOL Time Warner/NBA channel aren’t realized, sources said, AOL Time Warner still plans to jettison the five-year-old service, which was unable to compete successfully against competitor ESPNews as cable’s dominant sports-news service.
Sources said nearly 200 CNN/SI staffers were informed of the network’s impending demise.
The decision was made prior to an agreement the NBA has evidently reached with AOL Time Warner to convert CNN/SI into a jointly owned network in which the two entities would share any revenue generated from ad sales or subscription fees, sources said. That deal could be announced as early as the week of Jan. 14.
CNN/SI executives would not comment on the matter, but sources said AOL Time Warner had made the decision early in order to meet a Jan. 10 accounting-rules deadline. By meeting that deadline, sources said, CNN/SI employees would be eligible for severance packages the company will offer.
Sources also indicated that some staffers will migrate to Cable News Network to cover sports, find other positions within the company, or interview for the new network.
Launched in 1996, CNN/SI was expected to combine CNN’s sports coverage with the Time Warner Inc.-owned Sports Illustrated magazine brand to create a true competitor to ESPNews.
But the service struggled to distinguish itself in the crowded sports-news arena. CNN/SI’s 19 million subscribers trail ESPNews’ 26.6 million, while ESPN’s SportsCenter and Fox Sports News’ regional and national sports reports garner solid ratings.
CNN/SI suffered several internal and on-air losses in 2000, laying off several staffers during the summer in an overall restructuring and cost-reduction effort.
This past September, the network lost its 11 p.m. slot on sister service CNN, further reducing the brand’s exposure to viewers.
The network had attempted to reposition itself by adding more live-event programming. It teamed up with Turner Network Television to share rights to the Wimbledon Championships tennis tournament, the Women’s United Soccer Association and the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing. CNN/SI had telecast practice runs and poll-qualifying races.
But the network recently lost its WUSA rights to Pax TV, which signed a two-year deal with the cable-centric league.
A few problems with the site host there link to their ISP has been playing up not much we can do about it. So if my site dosn't come up just keep trying eventually it should load.
For those trying to get Teletext on TVNZ on B1 it seems Teletext is only being transmiteed on TV2. remember this when testing new receivers.
New website from Strong Technologies
From my Emails & ICQ
B1 12356 V Sr 7200 Fec 3/4 "Globecast LF8" , Card saying "A current affair Sussex Inlet"
From the Dish
Intelsat 702 176E 4027 L PIDs for RFO Polynesie on : 110/120.
Optus B1 New PIDs for ABC TV NSW on 12670 H, 12688 H and 12706 H: 512/650.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "SCTV and RCTI" are now fta.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "TVRI, MTV Asia, TV 5 Asie and Bloomberg TV Asia" have all left
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "CNBC Asia and BBC World" have started on , PIDs 528/529 and 592/593.
Telkom 1 108E 3496 H Several changes in the mux here .
ST 1 88E 3632 V "Rainbow Channel 2 and FTV Entertainment" are now encrypted.
S.Korea to launch first military satellite
The Defense Ministry and state-run KT (Korea Telecom) Corp. have agreed to manufacture "Koreasat 5" as a combined commercial-military satellite, ministry officials said.
"The satellite will be used for communications for the military," a KT official said. The satellite will be South Korea's fourth Koreasat, but the first specifically designed for military use.
"The ministry named the fourth satellite Koreasat 5 because the figure four is a homonym with a word that means death in Korean," a ministry official said. All the South Korean satellites were put into orbit abroad by foreign-manufactured rockets.
South Korea has planed to spend $100 million to build its own space center designed to launch a satellite on an island off the country's southern coast, government officials said. Rockets launched from the site would not fly over other countries' air space, adding that the land can easily be secured because of its isolated locale, they said.
Experts say missile technology can be easily applied to rocket development for satellite launches. Under an agreement with the United States, South Korea was allowed to build missiles with a range of up to 187 miles and a payload of 227 pounds. Seoul test-fired last November a missile with a 62-mile range that landed in the Yellow Sea between South Korea and China.
Seoul's Defense Ministry has said that it would develop cruise missiles and unmanned reconnaissance planes to increase its ability to spy on rival communist North Korea.
The North test-fired a ballistic missile over Japan in mid-1998, stunning South Korea and neighboring countries. It insisted the launch was aimed at putting a satellite into orbit, but warned that it could be used for the military unless the United States and its allies give up anti-Pyongyang policies.
VIACOM PACKAGE FOR WEST ASIA
Entertainment major Viacom is promoting a new platform of pay channels for the Middle East and North Africa called 'Asia Plus', which is aimed at capturing audiences from the large emigre population from the Indian subcontinent. Apart from Viacom's own English movie channel 'Showtime', the pay package is expected to carry Sony Entertainment Television, SET Max, Aaj Tak and MTV, as well as regional channels Lashkara, Gurjari and Kairali. The 'Asia Plus' platform, expected to compete with the Eutelsat promoted package that carries the Zee channels, aims to be commercially available from early 2002. For distribution and marketing, it has teamed up with local networks in West Asia. Asia Plus will be headquartered at the new Dubai Media City enclave. The Viacom initiated platform will bear marginal programming costs as it merely involves down-linking the various India beamed channels, cleaning out the advertising and repackaging it for the UAE audience. This initiative is synergistic with the business plans of several Indian broadcasting networks too, who are now looking to overseas emigre groups as source of revenue. Many of these channels find that advertising revenues are not enough for survival back home, Subhash Menon, managing director of Reminiscent TV (RiTV) told the media.
MAK to launch soon; but will the viewer bite?
MAK TV, so far shrouded in secrecy and some spicy speculation, will fill the small screens very soon. The 31 December deadline that was being talked about, has come and gone, but the veils will be taken off anytime now, it is learnt.
In a crowded marketplace with umpteen channels in every possible genre elbowing each other for space, MAK TV better have some strong content ready in its six-channel offering. Apart from a music channel, Style - a fashion channel and Prime - a regular Hindi entertainment channel, there are three regional channels. While the Telugu and the Bangla channels are in for some stiff competition (the strongest coming from the ETV stable), a combined Sindhi-Gujarati channel may well hit it off with audiences due to its novel positioning.
The entire management team of MAK (Manoranjan, Aur Kya), headed by CEO Karan Saluja, has been comfortably housed in office space bought at the western suburb of Andheri in Mumbai. Reports indicate an initial investment of Rs 700 million has been made by unnamed promoters.
Several key personnel from rival channels have been inducted to beef up the team. There are four directors in Hitesh Sabharwal, former distribution head of Sony Entertainment Television, Satish Menon, former head of Zee News, Prashant Sanwal, former V-P, SET MAX and Amit Ray, executive VP Mudra Communications. Ray however, is not leaving Mudra but will function in an advisory capacity on the board.
Rupa Das, former programming V-P, Sony and Vaishali Sharma (ex-Sony again) in marketing are also on the team.
Building up on its past successes, MEN recently signed a deal with Fashion TV. It also plans to add other channels to its bouquet. FTV INDIA While initial press reports indicate that Fashion TV was going pay and would be distributed in India by MEN, the MEN FTV association actually runs much deeper.
It is reliably learnt that MEN is hiring its own satellite transponder and will pay Fashion TV to establish and broadcast a separate unique, FTV beam for India. The FTV India feed will initially carry one hour of India specific programming. This will consist primarily of Indian fashion shows. The India content will be ramped up to 2 hours, after a few months.
Since it would be difficult to get 2 hours of catwalk content everyday, the second hour would consist of interviews with Indian fashion designers, profiles of Indian models etc. MEN - FTV A key factor in the FTV India transmissions is that MEN will own (not just distribute) the FTV India transmissions.
MEN would therefore collect the pay tv rentals, which would be added to MEN's bottom, line. MEN would probably pay FTV an annual royalty / fee for the brand and content. MEN, not FTV would own all the pay tv decoders with Indian cable networks, required for receiving FTV as a pay channel. It is reliably learnt that MEN plans to offer the FTV decoders against a deposit of Rs 3,600 + a monthly rent of Rs 300 to cable networks with a minimum of 500 paying subscribers.
The FTV pay fee is pegged at Rs 7 per subscriber per month. FTV was supposed to go pay in early November. This was postponed to early December. At the time of writing, the channel continues to be free to air. MEN's press statements blame it on a delay in bulk procurement of the decoders. The FTV MEN beam will be from a separate transponder may be even a separate satellite, compared to the existing transmissions.
By seeding the market with its own decoders, MEN is establishing the first step to put in place its own bouquet. Even if, sometime in future, MEN and FTV part ways, MEN can quickly induct a new pay channel using the same MEN decoders on the ground. The MEN-FTV decoders would simply be redeployed.
Did some more packing today so not much time to do much on the site not that there is a lot happening.
Pas 8 , ABC Asia Pacific upgrade taking place Friday 11th, Hopefully they will up the power.
Has anyone looked for feeds lately? Telstra Saturn Golf Open from NZ should up there somewhere and also Friday night the start of the Cricket World Series.
From my Emails & ICQ
"Service upgrade - Pas 8, ABC Asia Pacific's satellite distribution will be upgraded on 11 January 2002. The upgrade will result in a short service interruption of up to 15 minutes. The work will take place between 11 am and 3 pm Australian eastern daylight savings time." Also Humphrey wont be making an appearence of ABCAP soon - Humphrey is signed with Channel Nine
From the Dish
Intelsat 701 180E 11514 V A new TNS mux has started here , Viaccess, Sr 30000, Fec 3/4,
SIDs 812-821, PIDs 751/771-760/780, line-up: Cinestar 2, TCM, TF 1, RTL 9,Mangas, Cartoon Network, Teva, TF 6, CNN International, RFO Tempo Tahiti tests, TV Polynesie tests and SkyRock.
Intelsat 701 180E 11060 V "Odyssee" has left.
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "New mux here" Sr 18000 Fec 5/6
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "TTV"
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "CTS"
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "PTV"
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "SBN"
Pas 8 166E 12360 V "CSN"
Palapa C2 113E 4000 H "Channel NewsAsia" is back on , SIDs 1-3, 5-6, PIDs 1160/1120-1360/1320 and 1560/1520 1660/1620. The test cards on PIDs 1460/1420 has ceased.
Yamal 102 90E 3587 L "Nord TV" is back/still on, Sr 4285, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256.
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "Jilin Satellite Channel, HeiLongJiang TV" and the test card are now encrypted.
CNN Hindi news channel soon
The global news channel from the Time Warner-AOL stable, CNN, is reportedly considering a 24-hour Hindi news channel with reverse migration of the Zee News content. There will be simultaneous telecast of both the English and Hindi feeds.
It is believed that the deadline for the new feed is February. The dynamics of the new arrangement are being worked out.
Right now there is a nonexclusive content-sharing pact between CNN and Zee News along with a distribution pact between the parents.
While both Turner International India MD Anshuman Mishra and Sandeep Goyal, group CEO, broadcasting, Zee, denies any such plans, the Hindustan Times learns that the deal would be inked shortly.
CNN had started a regional South Asian feed with a fixed India-specific block in 2000 in response to the demand from the Indian subcontinent.
Another quiet day, thank you to all those that turned up in the chatroom, I am waiting on an email from Parachat as to how much we can purchase the server software for. Some good news my brother has replaced the broken actuator part just waiting for him to drop it off and maybe on the weekend I can hook things back up at least the dish wouldn't be pointing down at Earthsat anymore.
DVB Universal users try this .SAT file that I have prepared (with help from Stu MCLeod) it is suitable for users in Australia and NZ and contains the main satellites of interest. What you do is load it into DVB2000 using DVB Universal and then you will have a list of local satellites in the search menu. If you are in Asia you may like to edit this file and remove satellites such as Optus B1/B3 and I701 and replace with the Apstars etc. You are welcome to make your own revisions and send to me such as a NZ only version, a Western Australia version etc.
From the Dish
Palapa C2 113E 3633 H "FTV Entertainment, FTV News Channel and CTS" have left.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H All channels, except SCTV, RCTI and Bloomberg TV Asia are FTA.
Yamal 102 90E 3526 L "Yuzhniy Region" is still on, Sr 4285, Fec 3/4,Vpid 308 Apid 256.
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "Guangxi TV" has left, replaced by a test card. (Don't know why these are here a mystery)
Intelsat 704 66E 4055 R The occasional GlobeCast feeds have left.
Sahara TV set to debut online
General entertainment channel Sahara TV will be making its presence felt on the Internet in about a month's time.
Sahara TV vice-president (publicity, promotions & PR) Priya Raj said that plans had been afoot for a while but had been kept on hold for a variety of reasons. www.saharatv.com is right now going through its beta run on a private ip address, Raj said.
Once approval is given by all parties concerned, the site will start operating. Though details were to be finalised, Raj said the site would be full of interactive features and contests so that the channel can firmly imprint its identity in the mind of the viewer in a cluttered market.
More news of MAK TV
Amit Ray, Vice President, Mudra, is to play a new role in association with the mysterious new Hindi channel called MAK TV, about to be launched any time. While neither confirming nor denying it to The Brief: Ray hinted that it would be an advisory role along with his agency.
MAK TV, a brainchild of Karan Saluja (watch the media space for an exclusive interview, next issue) will have four more channels a dedicated fashion channel called Style, a music channel, and two regional channels: one Gujarati and one Sindhi. MAK is the acronym for Manoranjan Aur Kya.
CNBC Guts Schedule
CNBC is revamping its schedule after taking a beating in the business-news ratings war.
The network announced Tuesday that it will move up the starting time of its flagship Business Center program to 5 p.m. and add a half-hour to the program, which will now run from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
CNBC’s new schedule -- including the Business Center change and the addition of four new programs -- will debut Feb. 4.
Business Center has competed head-to-head against Cable News Network’s Lou Dobbs Moneyline. Both Moneyline and Fox News Channel’s Your World with Neil Cavuto have beaten Business Center handily in recent months.
CNBC also tore up its morning schedule, and it will cancel Today’s Business, which currently runs from 5 a.m. to 7 a.m.
It will replaced by Wake-Up Call with Liz Claman and Carl Quintanilla, which will be shot live from the NASDAQ MarketSite in New York’s Times Square and run from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m.
Claman had been co-host of Today’s Business. Quintanilla, a reporter for The Wall Street Journal, will replace Bob Sellers, Claman’s current co-anchor.
Wake-Up Call will push back the starting time of the three-hour Squawk Box until 8 a.m., and the starting time of the two-hour Power Lunch has been pushed back until 1 p.m.
Former Moneyline co-host Stuart Varney will anchor one of the new programs, The Wall Street Journal Editorial Board with Stuart Varney, which will run Fridays at 7 p.m. beginning March 1.
Varney abruptly quit CNN in March, on the same day of a New York Daily News report that said he was angered by AOL Time Warner Inc. vice chairman Ted Turner's use of the term 'Jesus freaks' to describe Catholic employees observing Ash Wednesday.
Another new program, Midday Call, hosted by Martha MacCallum and Ted David, will run weekdays from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Maria Bartiromo will host Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Tyler Mathisen will join Bartiromo at 4 p.m. for a program that CNBC is calling Closing Bell with Maria Bartiromo and Tyler Mathisen.
CNBC’s new strategy comes after a year of slumping ratings. It was the only news network to lose viewers in the total-day category in 2001.
'It’s a new year and a new world, and our viewers need CNBC more than ever to make sense of current economic conditions,' CNBC CEO Pamela Thomas-Graham said in a prepared statement.
'The changes that we are implementing will showcase CNBC’s breakout personalities and make our coverage even more valuable, insightful and compelling,' she added.
Livechat tonight 9pm NZ onwards and 8.30pm SYD time onwards. Lets have a good turnout I am checking my options as to keeping the current chatroom software but running it on my own server BUT they want $480 U.S for it, working on getting them to knock it down to say $150 U.S or $99.95 as I feel its way over priced.
Sky encrypted at 4pm NZ time today. I don't notice any changes anywhere in Skys services so not sure why they were FTA. Perhaps getting the glitches out of system.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Mark at Mediasat
Mediasat will be bringing HRT (Croatian TV) to Australia and New Zealand
in the coming Weeks
This will be a pay service if you are interested.
If you are interest in subscibing please email Igor Prosin at
Recently I went to India and visited The Golden Temple - The most holiest for the Sikh community - in Amritsar ( Punjab ) and I took some beautifull photos of the The Golden Temple with the satellite dish for uplinking used by ETC - Punjab on Thaicom 3 which is used to relay the Religious Programmes on Thai 3.
I hope that you would like them and hopefully put at least one for your readers to view the most beautiful temple in the world.
Dawinder Singh Sagoo ( Paul )
(Craigs comment , WOW these pictures are very impressive I have left them in the original size and quality so you can appreciate them, I have made the thumbnails a bit bigger than normal but as usual just click on the thumbnails to get the full image)
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 4180 H "ABC Asia Pacific" has started regular transmissions on, Vpids 2306/2307and Apids 2313/2314. New APIDs for Radio Australia: 2310 and 2311.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 4088 V "Macau Satellite TV" has left, replaced by a Chinese TV Guide test card.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 3900 V "Indus Music" has started regular transmissions on ,Sid 23, Vpid 1230 Apid 1231.
Yamal 102 90E 3587 L "TV Nord" has left.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3585 V Sky Bangla has left, replaced by a test card.
Sorry no news available today
Sky NZ on B1, 12608 V transponder is mostly FTA at the moment 4.30pm NZT
Some more good news my brother took the piece that broke on the actuator to work, so he is fixing or replacing that.
Bad news Micha's excellent DVB-Universal utility for the Nokia is now no longer being updated other than fixes for bugs etc. But I have a feeling he is busy with a new project...Could he be helping designing the new software for the new "DVB2002 receiver" For those not keeping up the creator of the DVB2000 software is designing his own receiver/hardware/software from the ground up the processor is rumourd to be the Motorolla Coldfire which is code compatible with the already written Dvb2000 software. It won't take much to port to a new machine think what they can do on more modern hardware with a built-in HD etc. I expect a heap more features including internal scanning of satellites , logging etc to the internal HD and sophisticated spectrum analyser type features. I hope they don't forget to put all the suitable sockets on the back for us Cband Big dish guys.
Some bad news in the Emails section, seems I have 3 weeks to find a new chatroom.Just when the current one was working really well.
From My Emails and ICQ
Due To The High Cost Of Server And Bandwidth Usage And The Recent Decline In The Economy.
It Has No Longer Become Feasible To Keep The ParaChatNow Chat Server Operating.
On Thursday January 31st 2002 At 12:00 AM (Eastern Time US & Can.)
ParaChatNow / ParaChat.net Will Terminate The ParaChat Server Indefinitely.
This Will Follow A Closing Of All FreeChat Chat Rooms And Client Accounts Deleted.
ParaChatNow Would Like To Express Its Sincere Apologies To All FreeChat Clients For This Unfortunate Inconvenience.
It's Been A Pleasure Serving You.
From Bill Richards
0950 UTC 06-01-02
Palapa C2 113E 3935 H "ASIALINK Test Card" SR 5632 FEC 3/4 Vpid308 Apid256
From the Dish
Optus B1 160E 12608 V Several services are running FTA at the moment
Optus B3 156E 12313 H "FYI" is FTA.
Thaicom 1A 120E 12602 H "Thai TV Global Network" has started testing, Sr 29000, Fec 2/3, Vpid 512 Apid 640. There are occasional feeds on PIDs 513/641-515/643.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 4000 H "Xing Kong TV" has a new sid of 1745.
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Gujarati" and "ETV Oriya" have started testing on, PIDs 1660/1620 and 1760/1720, zone beam.
Insat 2E 83E 4005 V "ETV Oriya" has started testing on , PIDs 1760/1720, wide beam.
Insat 2E 83E 3525 V "Star Vijay" is in clear again.
NSS 703 57E 4178 L "MTA International" has left.
Measat 4, Launch is delayed to 2004.
Pay-TV beams to 1 in 5 homes
ONE in five Australian homes is tuned into pay-TV.
Subscription rates have more than quadrupled since the technology first burst into loungerooms in 1995.
A generation of channel surfers has turned to cable, satellite or microwave for a smorgasbord of movies, sport, news, children's shows, documentaries and other entertainment.
About 1.4 million households are paying for the privilege of extra choice on the small screen, latest figures show.
They can flick through more than 40 channels, compared with the five on free-to-air, depending on their carrier and type of package.
Market leader Foxtel has secured about 770,000 subscribers, regional operator Austar has about 430,000, and Optus about 260,000.
The industry pumps out more than 10,000 hours of programming a week and aims to snare even more devotees, with some players claiming half the nation's homes can be signed up over time.
And while free-to-air television slips into snooze mode at this time of year, pay-TV's market share hots up.
Pay-TV normally accounts for about 46 per cent of all television viewing in subscriber households.
But according to ACNielsen, subscribers averaged one hour and 57 minutes watching pay-TV each day last summer, compared with one hour and 48 minutes watching free-to-air.
An ACNielsen report released last year, Pay-TV Trends 2001, found Saturday was most popular for pay-TV. The top time slot was 8pm to 9pm.
Multi Channel Network chief executive Leigh Monti denies the pay-TV bandwagon has stalled despite a sluggish path to profit, speculation of an industry shake-up and restrictions on exclusive rights to key sport events under federal anti-siphoning laws.
"When you look at the length of time we have been around compared with other countries it has been an astounding effort," Mr Monti said.
"In excess of 10 per cent of all TV viewing each week is now on pay.
"And once pay-TV enters the home, viewers spend up to half their viewing time watching it."
In the less restrictive United States, pay-TV reaches about 70 per cent of homes. Britain has a penetration rate of about 40 per cent.
Free-to-air channels seek digital salvation
Until digital television became available in the wealthy Sydney suburb of McMahons Point last year, the only way the Seven Network's broadcast services director, Judi Stack, could receive television reception was through a Foxtel subscription.
Stack's predicament was an exquisite paradox: one of the most senior people in Australian television, living in an inner suburb of the largest city, was forced to pay to watch her own network.
It was also an example of why free-to-air broadcasters see digital TV arresting the slow decline of free television.
In five years, Australia's pay-TV industry has captured 22 per cent of a market once exclusive to the free-to-airs. In the US, pay-TV has penetrated 80 per cent of all households. Experts believe the mass roll-out of broadband services over the next decade will add to the pressure on networks' margins.
US consulting group Strategy Analytics estimates that in six years 11 per cent of all digital TV viewing will be via DSL phone services, turning telephone companies into broadcasters.
Digital is superior to analogue television in three main ways: the picture quality is higher, extra information can be broadcast, such as program schedules, and there is a back-channel, allowing information to flow in both directions.
In Australia, would-be broadcasters such as Fairfax, News Ltd and Telstra want a piece of the $3.2 billion in annual revenue earned by free-to-air networks such as Publishing and Broadcasting Ltd, Seven Network, Ten Network, Sunraysia Television, Southern Cross Broadcasting and WIN Television.
It was with this threat in mind that Stack, in her role as chairman of the Federation of Australian Commercial Television Stations, convened a lunch mid-December with 10 colleagues and rivals at the Channel Nine boardroom in Willoughby, Sydney.
With a page of speaking notes in front of her, Stack sat at the centre of the table. Opposite was Ten's general manager of business affairs, Susan Oddie, flanked by the director of digital services at Nine, Kim Anderson.
SBS's head of new media, Will Berryman, sat three seats to the left of Stack. Colin Knowles, the ABC's head of technology, strategy and development, sat at the opposite, far end of the table. (During the main course he explained to Stack the difference between progressive scan and interlaced television sets.)
The purpose of the gathering was to demonstrate industry unity on digital television, explain away the first year's miniscule take-up and foreshadow a big push in 2002. The message that emerged was that anyone expecting digital TV to be a big money spinner was delusional.
"I would say that 99 per cent of digital is defensive," said one of the executives present.
"I don't know where you're getting that 1 per cent from," said another.
Stack had scrawled a reminder note to herself in red ink at the bottom on her notes. It referred to a declaration by a colleague, Maureen Plavsic, a few days earlier that high-definition digital TV "has not been successful".
Stack had prepared an answer. The networks' differences on digital were minor, she explained, and they were united behind a common technology.
That technology is MHP, a set of standards governing the digital interactive functions, such as games and e-mail. Forrester Research estimates interactive television (iTV) will be worth $40 billion globally within three years. Without it, digital TV is just pretty pictures. (Analogue pictures contain about 340 pixels a line. Digital is capable of 1,920.)
MHP has been endorsed by all five Australian networks, but is technologically and commercially unproven, and enthusiasm for it varies. Channel Nine, for one, is a supporter, but wants the options left open in case a better model emerges.
Early this year, the pay-TV industry is expected to begin exploring a common approach through its industry group, the Australian Subscription and Television Association.
But like the UK, where half-a-dozen systems operate, it remains split. Foxtel and Austar have adopted the Open TV technology associated with News Corp, while Optus Vision uses Europe's Liberate system.
One of the companies which appears to be making digital TV work is News Corp's British Sky Broadcasting. Promoting its service through sporting broadcasts, viewers can select their own camera angles and order pizza while watching the FA Cup.
But most of BSkyB's interactive revenue comes from online gambling, prohibited in Australia by the Interactive Gambling Act.
Stack and new FACTS chief executive Julie Flynn are trying hard to advance a common position among the free-to-air broadcasters because competing digital systems would be a farce. Imagine buying a Channel Ten television.
They also have a great political incentive to make digital TV a success.
In what was believed to be the only free-to-air digital launch outside Finland, the commercial networks kept their oligopoly in return for spending $500 million on digital services.
But the ban on new television licences has only five years to run. If digital TV is a flop, the industry will have much less bargaining power when it comes to renegotiating the moratorium.
Even so, Seven, Nine and Ten will probably need to offer something in return. The obvious item is the radio spectrum now used for analogue television.
The US analogue network will be turned off in 2006. Doing the same here would allow the government of the day to raise hundreds of millions through an auction of the analogue spectrum.
There would also be a side benefit for the networks: seven million Australian households would be forced to throw out their analogue sets and buy digital ones, or at least conversion boxes.
It would be the ultimate defensive play: sideline the competition and lock in your customers.
Until then, the free-to-air networks will try to win back viewers, house by house, in the leafy suburbs such as McMahons Point.
One of the advantages of digital is the absence of signal fade. It is either received, or not.
That means Stacks' neighbours can now receive perfect reception through digital TV instead of a Foxtel subscription.
Pakistan to allow telecast of 5 Star channels
Within a week of asking cable TV operators to refrain from relaying Indian satellite channels, the Pakistan Telecom Authority has re-allowed transmission of five Star TV channels.
The PTA on Friday issued instructions that ESPN, Star Sports, Fox News, Sky News and the National Geographic channels would return to screens from today.
However, the ban on Star Gold, Star News, Sony, B4U and the Zee network of channels among others would remain in place, the PTA has said in a statement.
On 31 December, chief of the Pakistan Telecom Authority Maj Gen Shabzada Alam Malik had warned that cable operators defying the ban would be penalised and their license cancelled.
Correspondingly, though, Indian authorities are yet to take a decision on whether PTV should be banned here.
District authorities in Meerut last week banned telecast of PTV channel through cable operators till January 25, 2002, to check "anti-national publicity".
Meanwhile, the Central Monitoring Service, under the I&B Ministry, is continuing the stepped-up content monitoring exercise of different television and radio channels it instituted at the beginning of the war in Afghanistan.
PTV is being monitored round the clock, with not just news bulletins under close scrutiny, but also discussions and talks shows that are telecast on the channel. Audio visual recordings of panel discussions and programmes on Kashmir are being forwarded to the screening committee in the I&B ministry every day. Inputs from the CMS, the ministry of External Affairs and the committee of secretaries will be used to take a decision on the future of PTV.
New ESPN campaign to motivate subscribers
SPN Star Sports is unveiling a cheeky new campaign called ‘Sports It’s My Life’ on TV and print to celebrate its fifth anniversary in India as well as to, one suspects, motivate people to shell out the extra 8 bucks for ESPN-Star Sports’ recently-hiked cable subscription rates.
All the TV promos featuring Navjot Sidhu, Harsha Bhogle, Geoff Boycott and Naseeruddin Shah end with the message “Pay your cable operator.”
The print campaign is even cheekier, especially for a sports channel. The campaign designed by ad agency HTA has punchlines like “A recent survey says men only think about sex,” while the body copy debunks the headline saying men are crazy about sports actually. Another one has a girl suggestively asking, “Guess who I spent the last night with,” hinting of course at the English premier league telecast.
Meanwhile, ESPN Star Sports, which has lined up an impressive array of cricket and football coverage in their 2002 telecast, have yet to bag the Big Ticket events: World Cup Cricket and World Cup Soccer. While WSG Nimbus has the cricket rights, the soccer rights are with Siddharth Ray’s Stracon India.
*ll I can say publicly is that as sports broadcasters we are interested in the rights of both these games,” said ESPN-Star Sports MD Manu Sawhney.
Meanwhile, the cable operator community is quite peeved with Star for increasing the subscription rates of its bouquet channels so steeply. Cable companies, or MSOs as they are called like Sitichannel Wincable and InCable, are peeved about the fact they are being increasingly caught in the crossfire of cable operators and TV channels, “while we are just bothered about our commission,” as one official puts it.
The cable operators are cheesed about the fact that this frequent cable rate hikes is not going to sit well with subscribers who often refuse to pay hiked rates. The complaint of TV channels is that cable operators grossly underreport their subscriber figures and hence deny channels of their legitimate revenue.
Just a short update today. Some Chinese services appeared on Pas 10, I hope it dosn't mean some Asiasat 2 services will shift over.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock
C7 sport has been on all day on B1, 12326 H, sr 6980.
Would have reported earlier, but have been unable to get an Internet connection until now.
Currently showing Victoria v NSW one day cricket.
From Joe 5/01/02
Just a little obsersvation tonight: a live feed of the 2002 Hong Kong Ladies Tennis Championships on
Asiasat 2 3927 V SR 6110 FEC 3/4.
From the Dish
Telkom 1 108E The Telkom Vision Mux is reportedly using NAGRA encryption
Asiasat 3 105.5E 4000 H "Xing Kong TV" has replaced Star Chinese Channel here (Encrypted)
Yamal 102 90E 3526 L "Yuzhniy Region" has left.
ST 1 88E Footprint map here, (Australia not shown on the maps but this sat received in Perth on a 3M.)
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V An ETV mux has started here, Sr 27000, Fec 3/4,(Zone BEAM)
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Oriya test card" Vpid 1760 Apid 1720
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "Test card" Vpid 1860 Apid 1820
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Telugu" Vpid 1160 Apid 1120
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Bangla" Vpid 1260 Apid 1220
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Marathi" Vpid 1360 Apid 1320
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Kannada" Vpid 1460 Apid 1420
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Urdu" Vpid 1560 Apid 1520
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Kannada" Vpid 1660 Apid 1620
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "A SingTel mux has started here" all fta, Sr 20000, Fec 3/4,
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "Guangxi TV" Vpid 1160 Apid 1120
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "Jilin Satellite Channel" Vpid 1260 Apid 1220
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "HeiLongJiang TV" Vpid 1360 Apid 1320
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "SingTel Bangkok test card" Vpid 1460 Apid 1420
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 H "test card" Vpid 1560 Apid 1520
The launch of Insat 3C with Ariane is delayed from 16 to 23 January.
Insat 3A is scheduled to launch with Ariane V148 on 14 February.
Sorry about the lack of daily updates, busy with various things like packing. There isn't a lot going on at the moment anyway.
From my Emails & ICQ
From MR William
Dear sir, Happy New Year.My is william,staying in Sabah,Malaysia.
1. May you please let me know how to subscribe the Hellas package under
the Tarbs company 3640H sr 28063.Thaicom 3.
2. In my area where can I receive the adults channels like playboy, xxxl ,spice,etc
3.How much do the smartcards cost in US$
Mr William .
Craigs reply, You are out of luck on all 3 questions, 1st The Hellas package is not a pay tv package its used by Tarbs to import these channel into our part of the world. 2nd I don't know of any adult channels that are available to subscribers in Malaysia I have a feeling its probably banned by the government anyway.
From the Dish
Palapa C2 113E 4000 H Both Channel NewsAsia has left, replaced by test cards.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3735 V "The Stock Channel" tests have left.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3767 H "Occasional feeds", Sr 3616, Fec 3/4.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3806 H "Occasional feeds", Sr 5387, Fec 7/8.
ST 1 88E 3632 V New PIDs for almost all channels in the MMBN mux
Thaicom 3 78.5E New APIDs for Raj Digital Plus and Raj TV on 3451 V: 650 and 660.(Asia Beam)
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3480 H "Nile Family and Kids, RTS Sat, ESC 1 Australia and ESC 2" have started (Encrypted)
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3640 H New FEC for the Unitel mux is 2/3.
'Its my life' claims ESPN Star, but will the cable ops play ball?
ESPN Star on Friday unleashed ambitious programming plans for the year, even as cable ops in the country gear themselves to protest against the revised subscription rates of Rs 24.
ESPN MD Manu Sawhney, who addressed a press conference in Mumbai, said a total of 261 days on the channel would be devoted to cricket, of which 82 would feature Indian cricket. However, while DD will grab eyeballs in the beginning of the year with telecasts of international matches played on Indian soil, ESS has to wait till March to cover the Indian tour of the West Indies. The RS 8 hike in subscription rates, consequently, is not being seen too kindly by cable ops who are threatening to take the channel to court over the matter. Sawhney, however, is unperturbed.
Even as the year's plans harp on the massive willow coverage, he says the channel's focus has shifted to other sports like soccer, tennis, Formula 1 and golf. "The Indian viewer is discerning enough not to harp on Indian cricket all the time," he said, when quizzed about the response of cable operators to the hike.
An integrated PR campaign accompanies the new programming initiative, in print as well as on the electronic media. The channel's on-air promos feature its anchors Navjot Sidhu, Naseeruddin Shah, Harsha Bhogle and Geoff Boycott speaking of their passion for sport. The signature tune 'It's my life' runs through the entire campaign, making a pitch for the younger generation sports lovers in the country. ESS is hoping to pack in the viewers with three of the four Grand Slam telecasts, the US Open golf tournament, the Australian Grand Prix and the English Premier League soccer, among other sporting events.
Maintaining that the Indian viewer is going through a period of maturity and currently demands plurality of choice, Sawhney says pay TV is fast becoming the norm in India as in the rest of the world. Lamenting the under declaration of connectivity, Sawhney says cable ops give out only 16 to 20 per cent of the actual subscriber base. The channel has also taken the drastic step of switching off signals to certain cable ops in cases of gross underdeclaration and non-payment, he said.
Sports commentator Harsha Bhogle, who also addressed the media conference, said value added sports channels like ESS are doing yeoman service by showcasing human achievement rather than human failures projected by news channels.
ESS' programmes like Super Selector has already broken the record for the largest show of its genre globally. After netting 316000 participants in the last month of 2001, the show hosted by Naseeruddin Shah has won several awards including the Promax and BDA Asia awards for 2001.
The ESPN School Quiz that has covered two million students in 23 cities in India, will also be aired as a 61 episode programme from April 2002. The ESS programming line up also includes the Indian tour to England in June, the Indian tour to New Zealand in December and the India, England, Sri Lanka triangular in June, Wimbledon, US Open, Australian Open and ATP Masters Series tennis, the UEFA football championship and the World Superbikes Championship.
(Craigs comment, 261 days of cricket? where do I sign up? I want this channel!!)
Pak relaxes TV ban to delight of sports fans
SPORTS fans and news junkies breathed a sigh of relief on Friday after Pakistan said cable operators could recommence transmissions of five STAR TV channels banned in the wake of escalating tensions with India.
The Pakistan Telecommunciation Authority said ESPN, STAR Sports, Fox News, Sky News and the National Geographic Channel would return to screens from Saturday.
Sports fans in this cricket-mad country have been tearing their hair out in frustration at not being able to watch live broadcasts from Sydney of the ongoing third Test match between Australia and South Africa.
The government had banned all-Indian satellite channels relayed by local cable operators in Pakistan on December 29 in an attempt to limit access to Indian-produced news programmes, which it said were biased.
However, the ban on STAR Gold, Sony, B4U and the Zee network of channels among others would remain in place, the PTA said in a statement.
( PTI )
There seem to be various rumours going around at the moment that Tarbs has been hacked. Also another that NDS in the U.K has also been hacked, reports mention NDS cards will appear in 4 weeks time. If the NDS rumour is true SKY/STAR and others could be in for a tough time in 2002.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Chris Pickstock 2/01/02
B1, 12397 H, Sr 7200, Vpid 308, Apid 256 : Aust. Women's Hardcourt Championship from Qld.
B1, 12317 H, Sr 6980, ABC Interchange, Hopman Cup from Perth. This feed continues into the evening after normal ABC channels finish their coverage at 6 pm.
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 4044 V Occasional feeds, Sr 6620.
Optus B1 160E 12546 H "Mix 106.3" has left
Optus B3 156E 12439 H "Fox Footy Queensland channel", is running channel 9 with the cricket (encrypted needs card)
JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V "BeiMei TV" is now encrypted.
Asiasat 3 105.5E 12447 H "ChinaCast TV" has left
ST 1 88E Scholar Business Network and STV-MTV have replaced CASA and HuaXia TV on
3632 V, MPEG-2/clear, SIDs 206 and 209, PIDs 5153/5154 and 545/546.
Insat 2E 83E 3525 V "Star Vijay" is now encrypted.
Insat 2E 83E 3615 V "Jaya TV" is back on , Sr 3255, Fec 3/4, Vpid 4194 Apid 4195,zone beam.
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V The test card has left.
Insat 2E 83E 4005 V "ETV Gujarati tests"on, SID 6, PIDs 1660/1620. Two test cards have started on PIDs 1760/1720 and 1860/1820.
Apstar 2R 76.5E 3823 V "Channel I" has left, moved to PAS 10.
PAS 10 68.5E 4011 H "Channel I" has started, Sr 3571, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256.
India’s INSAT 3C Awaits January 16 Launch
India’s delayed national satellite, Insat 3C, is undergoing ground checkout tests at the Kourou Spaceport in French Guyana prior to launch next month.
Insat 3C, designed and built by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO), is now positioned in the integration facilities at Kourou. Ground checkout equipment has been installed and various tests such as solar panel and antenna deployment, integrated mechanical and electrical checks are being carried out.
Insat 3C is to be launched on board Ariane 4 launch vehicle on January 16, 2002. It will carry 24 C-band transponders, six extended C-band transponders, two S-band broadcast satellite service transponders and mobile satellite service transponders. Insat 3C will be positioned at 74-degree east longitude.
Insat 3C was to have been launched last July, but a failure in the Ariane 5 launch vehicle forced a scrubbing of that launch. Ariane Space later said that it was continuing an intensive Ariane 5 return-to-flight program to prevent repetition of an upper stage malfunction that resulted in a failure to deliver Insat 3C into proper orbit.
The failure of the Ariane 5 vehicle to reach a proper orbit led to the indefinite suspension of further Ariane 5 flights. An inquiry board said the malfunction was due to combustion instability at the EPS upper stage ignition caused by an abnormally high-pressure gradient in the combustion chamber.
The coming January 16 launch, called Flight 147, has been placed on standby because of integration and checkout activities. Launch team members completed installation of the Ariane 4's two large liquid strap-on boosters early December and performed verification checks.
Flight 147 will remain in the vertical assembly building at the Spaceport's ELA-2 complex, and will be rolled out to the launch zone on January 4. Mating of Insat 3C to Ariane 4 is planned for January 10. Flight 147 will be the first Arianespace mission in 2002.
Jobs go as Network of the World (NOW TV) scales back
Network of the World, one of the most ambitious attempts to converge TV and the web in an interactive entertainment service, is being scaled back significantly.
Network of the World's Hong Kong-based backer, Pacific Century CyberWorks, is effectively pulling the plug on the service's London production studio.
The studio is operated by Trans World International, which is owned by the talent and sports rights entrepreneur, Mark McCormack.
A significant number of the 400 TWI staff working on Network of the World are expected to lose their jobs, though a core group will be retained to develop video games services.
NoW's English-language service, which is produced from London, was suspended yesterday.
PCCW will shift most of the content production for the service to Asia.
Network of the World was launched in June 2000, amid considerable fanfare. It offered five themed web portals and an Asian satellite TV channel.
The project was set up as a joint venture.
PCCW supplied the money and Asian distribution and TWI, the TV production arm of the sports marketing giant, IMG, provided the English language content from its west London studio.
However, cracks began to appear in the venture more than a year ago, when PCCW was forced to reduce its investment in Network of the World after its share price slumped in the dot.com crash.
The production operation run by TWI was affected by cutbacks last September.
Two of the Network of the World portals - Earth and Space and Film and Arts - were closed.
PCCW and TWI have now scrapped their original Network of the World joint venture agreement and signed a new deal.
The new arrangement gives PCCW continuing non-exclusive access to TWI's TV programming library for distribution on Network of the World in Asia.
TWI will advise PCCW on sports rights acquisitions and content production for the Asian market.
PCCW will also take a 10% stake in a new TWI online games subscription service.
The service will be developed from content made originally for Network of the World's Gamer portal.
PCCW will have the option to raise its share to 40% within two years at no extra cost.
Shanghai TV Giant to Launch 11 Channels
The Shanghai Cultural and Broadcasting Media Group, one of China’s largest media conglomerates, will launch 11 specialized TV channels on January 1, 2002 to counter increased foreign competition.
Press reports said the media giant was beefing up its programming in a concerted effort to boost market share in the wake of China’s accession to the World Trade Organization earlier this month. The group consists of the city’s largest TV stations, Shanghai TV and Oriental TV, and the Satellite Broadcast Network.
Shanghai TV’s new channels will broadcast breaking and financial news, fashion, TV dramas, sports and reality shows. Oriental TV, on the other hand, is to air entertainment news, arts, music and drama shows while the Shanghai satellite TV channel will feature foreign TV programs.
The group has been promoting its upcoming specialized channels over the past few months and is in the process of centralizing its advertising and marketing operations.
(Craigs comment, Oh more Chinese channels just like my predictions suggested)
HK Phoenix Satellite To Broadcast Infonews In Japan In 02
Phoenix Satellite Television Holdings Ltd. will broadcast its Infonews channel in Japan
Over 20,000 Chinese viewers living in Japan will have access to Infonews next January through an agreement signed by Phoenix with Chinese-language TV station Raku Raku China.
Hong Kong-based Phoenix said it signed the agreement with a, which will allow Infonews access to 20,000 viewers in Japan starting January 2002.
Phoenix is presently engaged in an effort to cut costs by about five percent this fiscal year through the redeployment of company resources such as the merger of programs that overlap.
A strong advertising market in China and the company's reputation as a hard news channel helped increase advertising sales. About 75 percent of Phoenix advertising revenue comes from China. Phoenix beams its signal to China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, North America and now Japan via satellite. Australia’s News Corporation owns some 38 percent of Phoenix.
No sob stories on this Tamil pay channel!
Chennai-based Diksaat Transworld Ltd will shortly launch ‘Win TV’-a 24-hour Tamil channel that promises ‘sweeping laughter among weeping channels...’. The satellite TV channel devoted exclusively to humour will be test launched on January 13 and will begin commercial telecast from January 27. It is the first Tamil channel to go pay and perhaps the first in the country to do so from day one.
The channel is currently doing all the programming in-house and plans to outsource content after six months, by when it expects to establish the image it wants to project. It so far has around 700 hours of programming, which is enough to sustain the channel for 13 weeks, said Mr T Dhevanathan, chairman and managing director of Win TV. From April 14, 2002, the channel plans to premiere a new Tamil film every Sunday, he told a media gathering in Chennai. The channel is currently in the process of entering into an agreement for this with the Tamil film producers’ council, he said.
The new films will be mainly a mixture of small and medium-budget films. The channel is also looking at financing such films and is not averse to considering big budget films too.
Started with an initial fund of Rs 18 crore, the TV company expects to break-even in a year’s time. It has so far spent Rs 8 crore and expects the rest to last 10 to 12 months.
The company is building its own studio with state-of-the-art infrastructure at an investment of Rs 3.5 crore. It is expected to be ready by April. For the time being it has leased a studio to produce its programmes.
The TV channel is planning to charge Rs 10 per household as subscription fee. It is tying-up with 30 distributors across the state and other areas where Tamil channels have viewership. Each of these distributors will bring in 60 cable operators into their network.
Win TV to go on air from January 27
WIN TV would go on air on January 27 and testing would start on January 13, according to Mr T. Dhevanathan, Chairman and Managing Director of the channel.
From mid-April, audience will get to see a new Tamil movie every Sunday on Win TV, he said. For the purpose, an agreement has been reached with the film industry and cable operators.
Mr Dhevanathan said Win TV would be a pay channel (It is yet to decide what the subscription would be) and would be totally devoted to humour.
The total investment into the channel has been Rs 18 crore. Most of the programming would be in-house and the company has around 13 weeks of programming, Mr Dhevanathan said. The channel would cover the Gulf, parts of Russia and Australia.
Win TV is promoted by Diksat Transworld Ltd, which would soon be listed on the stock exchanges.
Zee Tele sets up cell to improve content
Zee Telefilms has started 2002 on a new note with the setting up of an ideation cell to improve its programming content.
?The purpose of setting up the ideation cell is to work on our own ideas. We currently have a lot of ideas in fiction and non-fiction areas and most of these are at the incubation stage,” said Sandeep Goyal, group CEO (broadcasting), Zee Telefilms.
The ideation team will be headed by Vinta Nanda, an independent serial director, and will have 5-6 ideators who will work on new concepts and formats.
The team will work for all fourteen Zee channels.
The first of these new appointees is Amrish Sethi, ex-creative director of MTV.
In recent months, Zee Telefilms has seen several top-level changes including a new CEO in Goyal. Goyal heralded his entry with the launch of 26 new programmes over a 7-day period, but has only bagged moderate success.
R K Singh, the former CEO of Zee, has now taken charge of Playwin Infrawest, an Essel Group company through which the company has made a foray into the lottery business.
If you are wondering about the lack of site updates, I havn't been well for the past few days so have taken a break from things.. Hopefully the next update will be Friday or Saturday
Sorry no update today no time
Livechat tonight 8.30pm Syd time onwards and from 9pm NZ onwards in the chatroom.
Not much to report other than its stinking hot today and I don't feel like doing much on the site. I forgot to mention ABC Asia Pacific has started what are peoples thoughts on it so far?
From the Dish
Optus B3 156E 12689 H "National Geographic Channel Australia" has left
Optus B3 156E 12564 H. "C7 Sport Gold" has left
Jcsat 128E 3960 V reported FTA
Telkom 1 108E 3586 H "Channel NewsAsia" has left
Asiasat 2 100.5E 3855 V Sr 6812 "mystery"
Insat 2C 93.5E 4180 H "DD 4 - Kerala" has started , Sr 5000, Fec 3/4, Vpid 308 Apid 256, wide beam.
Yamal 102 90E 3784 L "GTRK Dalnevostochnaya" has left.
Insat 2E 83E 3615 V "Jaya TV" has left
PAS 10 68.5E 3863 V "Taste CFN" has left
NSS 703 57E 3798 R The audio frequencies for RTNC 1 and RNC have been swapped again.
ABC hits Asian airwaves
THE Melbourne Cup, football, SeaChange and Blue Heelers spearhead the ABC's
latest venture into Asia with ABC Asia Pacific up and running from last night.
News and current affairs are expected to take up 30 per cent of air time on
the new service, which will reach viewers in almost 30 countries including
East Timor, China, Indonesia and Bangladesh.
News, presented by Rosanna Mangiarelli, was the first program broadcast at
8pm, followed by a current affairs style educational English program and a
documentary on Australian birdlife.
But the ABC has grand plans for the new service to showcase the best of
Australian drama, documentary-making and of course, sport.
"SeaChange, we're looking at Water Rats, Blue Heelers, that sort of
programming - we're entering into contractual arrangements with the
producers at the moment," ABC Asia Pacific team leader Mr Jack Doherty said.
"We are also confident we will have the major Australian sporting events in
our lineup, either live or probably pre-recorded."
"It's an Australian television service so we are going to reflect the best
Australian television programming on it."
T S I C H A N N E L N E W S - Number 52/2001 30 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
OIC TO LAUNCH GLOBAL TV CHANNEL
The Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) has approved the setting up of a
multi-language television channel to be available around the world. According
to the OIC, the channel aims to spread Islam and create the right image of the
religion and explain the views of the Islamic world on various problems.
Broadcasting from Doha, Qatar, languages will include English, Chinese, French,
Hindi and Spanish.
SHANGAI MEDIA GROUP TO LAUNCH 11 NEW CHANNELS
The Shanghai Cultural and Broadcasting Media Group, which is made up of the
city's largest TV stations-Shanghai TV and Oriental TV-and the Satellite
Broadcast Network, announced on December 25 that it will launch 11 specialised
TV channels on January 1. The new offerings include the breaking-news, fashion,
TV-drama, financial-news, sports and reality-show channels of Shanghai TV; the
entertainment-news, arts, music and drama channels of Oriental TV; and the
Shanghai satellite TV channel, which features foreign TV programs.
TECHNICAL PROBLEMS FOR SKY TELEVISION
Viewers to Sky's new digital satellite TV service have bombarded the
broadcaster with complaints about bugs in the system. Sky Television said it
hoped to have all the problems ironed out within the next few days.
Difficulties 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. About 400,000 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.
A F R I C A
EGYPTIAN TV CHANNEL TO LAUNCH IN US
Egyptian minister of information Safwat al-Sharif announced on December 26 that
the Egyptian satellite TV channel will be transmitted to the US as of early
January in a new design and programme schedule so that it would appeal to the
American taste. The transmission is set to reach the West Coast of the US and
to be relayed from there as well, he added. The news bulletins addressing the
US will be different from those aired to the Arab and other regions, said the
minister. Also, the Nile TV News channel will also transmit a two-hour daily
programme in Hebrew to Israel.