Sorry about the server being down. I may need a new one. Please send any hosting offers to my email address.
Not good either yesterday with the Launch of the new Telstra-18/Apstar V going wrong and the bird being stuck at 21000km they are trying to salvage it but if they manage to, it will use up most of its fuel and drastically shorten its life. The last thing we need is another inclined sat up there.
Sorry if some of the news on the page is a little stale
Mystery signal from last week NZ, KU Nss 5 177W?? now has a service on 12671V sr 15500 Fec 5/6 Taiwanese mux the same as on I804 but with extra channel labled OU_TV FEED which is showing HAKKA TV from Taiwan. Not sure on the beams on this bird might be worth a look in Aus or the Islands? Could the BestTV mux be moving to NSS5?
Zee TV at http://www.zee-tv.com/
Zee English at http://www.zee-english.com/
Zee MGM at http://www.zee-mgm.com/
From my Emails & ICQ
Many emails telling me the server is down ...
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 3706 V "ABS-CBN Channel 1" has left .
PAS 8 166E 3714 V "ABS-CBN Channel 2" has left.
PAS 8 166E 3860 H "Videoland Sports, The Soundtrack Channel Pacific and CTI TV Asia" are FTA
Optus B3 152E 12501 H "The GlobeCast World TV" mux has left .
Optus B3 152E 12720 V "SBS Radio AM Perth and SBS Radio FM Perth" have started on , Fta,APIDs 201 and 202.
Express AM 11 96.5E 3875 L "Perviy kanal (+4h) and Radio Mayak" have started on , SECAM, 6.50 and 7.00 MHz.
NSS 6 95E 11543 V "The New Skies promo and a Free-XTV info card" have started on , Fta SR 27500, FEC 7/8, PIDs 1537/1538 and 5021/5034, NE Asian beam.
Zenith Fails to Put Satellite in Orbit
Russia’s Zenith rocket lifted off from the Space Launch platform in the Pacific Ocean early Tuesday morning, but failed to deliver Telstar-18 communications satellite to its preset orbit, the Russian Information Agency Novosti reported.
According to preliminary reports, the booster engine didn’t operate as planned, thus causing the failure.
The Telstar-18 satellite, which has a mass of more than 4,500 kg, was to be placed in a geostationary orbit at 138 degrees eastern longitude. It is the third rocket to blast off from the Sea Launch platform in 2004.
The satellite was supposed to relay radio and television signals the entire Asia-Pacific region, as well as provide all-out Internet access, the news agency reported.
Representatives of Boeing’s Russian office noted that the Telstar-18 satellite had been assembled by the Space Systems Loral company, Novosti reported. The spacecraft will be controlled by Loral Skynet (both companies are affiliated with Loral Space & Communications).
Telstar 18 still salvageable, says expert
Telstar 18, an American communications satellite, can be put into a geostationary orbit by its rockets, a source at the Flight Control Center told RIA Novosti.
"However the service life of the space vehicle will decrease significantly as the orbital maneuver will use practically all of its fuel," the source said.
According to the source, the satellite's apogee is 21,000 kilometers instead of 36,000 kilometers.
Currently, experts at the flight center and the American customers are meeting to make a decision about the future of Telstar 18.
The source said that it had not be excluded that the cause of the problem was with the Energia rocket corporation's Upper Stage DM (one part of Energia's two stage launch vehicle).
"The Russian Upper Stage DM did not completely fulfill its set flight sequence," said Valery Lyndin, the official spokesman for the center. "Because of this, Telstar 18 was put into a much lower orbit."
He specified that after the satellite separated from the upper stage, the foreign customer was given control of it.
Specialists discuss ways to deploy US satellite into target orbit
MOSCOW, June 29 (Itar-Tass) - Russian and U.S. specialists are holding an emergency session to discuss the ways of deploying into the target orbit the U.S. Telstar-18 satellite, launched from a floating platform in the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday, sources from the Mission Control Center told Itar-Tass.
The Russian-Ukrainian Zenit-3SL rocket was successfully launched on Tuesday from a floating platform within the framework of the international Sea Launch project. The rocket, which blasted off from the Odysseus launch platform, was to bring into space the Telstar-18 communications satellite.
However, the U.S. satellite has failed to reach the target orbit, a source from the Mission Control Center outside Moscow told Itar-Tass. According to the source, it happened because of a malfunction in the acceleration unit.
“The satellite separated from the acceleration unit of the rocket, but failed to reach the target orbit,” a source said. “It is now in the apogee, at the altitude of 21,000 kilometers instead of the calculated 36,000 kilometers,” the source emphasized.
The Itar-Tass correspondent in Los Angeles has learnt that an emergency session of specialists is now in progress on board the ship, from which the launch was controlled. Experts believe “satellite’s own engines can be used to deploy it into the calculated orbit”.
It was expected that the satellite, designed and operated by the U.S. company Loral Space and Communications, will work in space over 13 years. Telstar-18 was the 14th satellite, launched within the Sea Launch project.
The Sea Launch joint venture was set up in 1995 by the American Boeing, the Russian space company Energia, the Anglo-Norwegian Kvaerner Group and two Ukrainian enterprises (the design bureau Yuzhnoye and the Yuzhmashzavod company).
Media giant ABS-CBN to expand into Australia
Philippine media giant ABS-CBN Broadcasting Corp. is to expand into Australia in the third quarter, according to newly appointed president Luis Alejandro.
In an interview with Business World newspaper, Alejandro said ABS-CBN is also planning to penetrate potential markets in Hong Kong, Indonesia, and Singapore.
"ABS-CBN Global, the wholly owned unit which runs the media giant's international operations, will launch satellite services (in Australia) in the third quarter," Alejandro told the news paper.
The media firm already runs a cable business in Australia where it distributes Filipino-produced content.
ABS-CBN sees its global unit as one of the major drivers for its growth as the domestic market is already saturated.
ABS-CBN Global offers Filipino programs to 1.3 million Filipinos in North America, the Middle East, and Europe.
MATCHING STUDIO DEAL: Channel 7 goes for content
BBTV Productions to invest Bt425m for a 27.8% stake
Matching Studio and BBTV Productions, a fully-owned subsidiary of Bangkok Broadcasting and Television, which operates Channel 7, yesterday announced a partnership, signalling the full integration of the television station and content providers.
Under the partnership, BBTV Productions will invest Bt425 million in Matching Studio for a 27.8 per cent stake.
The board of directors of Matching Studio passed a resolution to increase the company’s capital by placing 57.74 million shares with BBTV Productions Co Ltd at Bt6.8 per share. And it will offer 46.19 million warrants at Bt0.70 per unit in order to maintain the fully diluted shareholding structure at 27.8 per cent.
The move follows an industry-wide trend. Channel 3, operated by BEC World Plc, previously formed an alliance with GMM Grammy Plc, to supply content for talk-shows, soap operas and other variety programs. And RS Promotion Plc recently formed a similar alliance with TV Channel 5.
The tie-up by BBTV Productions and Matching Studio is also an opportunity for the latter to link with Thailand’s leading media conglomerate and to enhance Matching Studio’s financial strengths.
BBTV Productions chairperson Charlotte Donavanik said the firm was registered in 2001 to produce quality programme content for TV Channel 7, as well as to seek new business opportunities for the channel. The company officially started operating at the beginning of this year.
“It is a good match between BBTV Productions and Matching Studio. We [BBTV] have hardware, broadcasting network and capital. While Matching Studio has talented people and creativity,” she said.
“Under the partnership with Matching Studio, BBTV Productions can expand its business beyond TV media into a full entertainment conglomerate.
“We [BBTV Productions] can use the agency’s strengths, such as in event organising, film production, movie studios, rental services for film shooting equipment, and outdoor billboards. This will make BBTV Productions fully born in those areas,” Chalotte said.
Matching Studio managing director Somchai Cheewasutthanon said the partnership with BBTV Productions fitted with the company’s policy to expand into new media products.
“We are expanding our business overseas in areas of film production, advertising and event marketing and other ‘below-the-line’ activities,” Somchai said.
“With a good reputation and the credibility of its parent company, TV Channel 7, BBTV Productions will help by giving us support on public-relations activities for our projects, as well as contacting foreign partners.”
He said the company’s subsidiary Matching Motion Pictures plans to team up with a Hollywood film-maker for a big movie project.
The company is also negotiating with CCTV, China’s biggest satellite-TV operator, on cooperation to expand its “content-providing” business to China.
Matching Studio is also working on its “Movie Town” project to set up “the first world-class” movie studio in Thailand, he said. US-based Bastien and Associates, which designed an outdoor studio for Universal, is currently designing Movie Town, which would be in excess of 100-rai in size. The design process is due to be finalised next month.
“We are a professional production house and don’t want to get any extra benefits such as broadcasting airtime from the channel. We can produce good TV content and are able to support every TV station which demands our talents,” Somchai said. But he said TV Channel 7 would be the priority.
Chalotte said that under the partnership, Matching Studio would not get any airtime privileges over other producers in supplying TV programmes to Channel 7. The company would be screened and have to pass the same criteria as other program producers.
Yuwadee Boonkrong, managing director of Media of Medias Plc, said Channel 7 had “money power” and the station wanted to expand its business network to cover programme content, which is now seen as “software” for the TV stations.
Bangkok Broadcasting and Television, which runs Channel 7, also owns more than 60 per cent of Media of Medias.
“In the future, all media businesses will compete together by means of ‘software’, and all TV stations including Channel 7 want to have good software providers in-hand,” Yuwadee said. “I can say that Matching Studio will be not the last agency forming a partnership with Channel 7.”
Narong Chaovarad, assistant managing director of Media of Medias, said Channel 7 had made a short-cut and expanded its business to content production and event organising through its partnership with Matching Studio, which is already strong in these areas.
Thai Shin Satellite Likely To File Shr Sale Plan Next Wk
BANGKOK (Dow Jones)--Thailand's Shin Satellite PCL (SATTEL.TH) is likely to submit for approval its proposal for a share offering to the Securities & Exchange Commission next week, the company's financial adviser said Tuesday.
"We are likely to file the plan with the SEC next week, but we haven't decided on the timing of the share sale yet," Sittichai Mahaguna, senior vice president of Kim Eng Securities, told Dow Jones Newswires.
Under the plan, the company will sell up to 208 million shares to raise between $60 million and $90 million to refinance its short-term debts and for working capital.
The company recently rescheduled the planned offering to early July from early June mainly due to weak market sentiment.
Russia launches eight foreign satellites into orbit
Moscow, June 29. (AP): Russia launched eight foreign satellites into orbit today from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, the Space Forces press office said.
The satellites took off on a Russian-Ukrainian Dnepr rocket, a decommissioned ballistic missile converted for space launches, at 1130 IST and were in orbit within about 15 minutes.
They include a French research satellite intended to measure electrical and magnetic currents in the high layers of the atmosphere and study volcanos and other seismic phenomena on Earth, as well as Saudi and US communications satellites and an Italian scientific orbiter.
STMicroelectronics Announces Immediate Availability of Fully-Certified DVB-MHP Reference Design for Digital Set Top Boxes
From Press release
Hardware and Software Components Bring Time-to-Market and Technology Re-use Advantages to Consumer Electronics' Manufacturers
GENEVA, June 29 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM - News), the leading supplier of integrated circuits for digital set-top boxes (STBs), today announced the availability of a complete hardware and software reference design that targets the expanding market for digital TV services requiring the DVB-MHP (Digital Video Broadcast -- Multimedia Home Platform) middleware. The reference design comprises ST's successful STi5517 MPEG-2 decoder, a choice of satellite or terrestrial demodulators, a comprehensive suite of software drivers, and a fully-certified DVB-MHP software stack which includes a Java Virtual Machine (JVM). The hardware elements are packaged on an inexpensive two-layer pc-board, for which complete schematics are also available.
The STi5517 combines, on a single chip, an ST20 CPU, MPEG-2 video and audio decoders, transport interfaces, advanced security, and many of the peripherals required by today's STBs. By taking advantage of this high level of integration, ST's customers can design cost-effective products that meet the needs of consumers worldwide.
The DVB-MHP standard defines generic interfaces between the underlying STB hardware, the interactive TV applications, and the broadcast network. DVB-MHP applications can therefore be delivered via cable, satellite, or terrestrial networks with minimal change to the underlying hardware and software. ST's software stack not only meets the requirements of all services currently using MHP by being compliant with Enhanced and Interactive Profiles of DVB-MHP 1.0.2, but also includes code to implement the more recently published DVB-MHP 1.0.3 specification. The stack features a customizable user interface that manufacturers can adapt to reflect their brand. The reference design provides full support for downloaded applications and the ability to add proprietary extensions through standard interfaces.
"The key component of the new reference design that ensures our customers' products are brought to market in the shortest possible time is the pre- integrated, fully-certified DVB-MHP software stack," said Christos Lagomichos, General Manager of ST's Set Top Box Division. "The availability of this software gives set-top box manufacturers the opportunity to obtain all the core hardware and software components for their products from ST, saving them time and money from both the administrative and engineering perspectives."
Customers for the new reference design can take advantage of ST's modular approach and address both terrestrial and satellite services by choosing one of ST's proven demodulator products. The STV0360 terrestrial and STV0299 satellite demodulators have been widely deployed and provide a glue-less interface to the STi5517 decoder. The STB6000 tuner chip completes ST's silicon offering for satellite STBs.
"The availability of interchangeable front-end modules ensures our reference design can be applied to all DVB-MHP services with minimal change to the underlying hardware," continued Lagomichos. "The software architecture also reflects this modular structure, so customers can address different markets with minimal engineering effort."
By using STAPI (ST's Application Programming Interface) as the underlying driver layer over the STi5517 hardware, ST provides customers with a simple migration path to other MPEG decoders in the ST product range, allowing them to take advantage of the increased performance and feature set of that comes with each new generation of devices. ST has licensed STAPI to manufacturers worldwide and it is currently being deployed in many high volume STBs.
STMicroelectronics is a global leader in developing and delivering semiconductor solutions across the spectrum of microelectronics applications. An unrivalled combination of silicon and system expertise, manufacturing strength, Intellectual Property (IP) portfolio and strategic partners positions the Company at the forefront of System-on-Chip (SoC) technology and its products play a key role in enabling today's convergence markets. The Company's shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange, on Euronext Paris and on the Milan Stock Exchange. In 2003, the Company's net revenues were $7.24 billion and net earnings were $253 million. Further information on ST can be found at http://www.st.com.
A Nhulunbuy welcome to a new era in ABC radio
ABC Local radio celebrated major changes to transmission across the Top End with a broadcast from beautiful Nhulunbuy in East Arnhem Land, home to miles of gorgeous beaches, fabulous fishing and Arnhem Land culture.
The changes mean Top End communities including Nhulunbuy now receive 105.7 ABC Darwin at all times of the day, with communities south of Newcastles Waters receiving Alice Springs program during the breakfast, morning and drive timeslots.
Local Radio Manager Jo Jarvis says the move will ensure ABC Local Radio NT is more relevant to more Territorians.
"Coastal communities who do business with Darwin and share the same weather patterns, including tropical cyclones,as Darwin, will now receive a radio service tailored to their needs.
"ABC Radio has been able to set up this new broadcasting environment by securing two satellite services to transmit our signals to the northern and southern sections of the Northern Territory," she says.
The changeover was celebrated with a seven hour broadcast from Endeavour Square in the centre of Nhulunbuy, as a procession of locals joined presenters Julia Christensen, Charlie King and Alison Buchanan at the microphone to give them an insight into life at the town.
About four thousand people live in the East Arnhem Land town, at the point where the Gulf of Carpentaria meets the Arafura Sea.
The broadcast concentrated on the history of Nhulunbuy and its growth as one of the Northern Territory's most significant mining towns to life in the community at the moment and it's future as Alcan seeks approval for a 1.5 billion dollar expansion.
Guests included Mandawuy Yunupingu, founding member of Yothu Yindi; Mike Hindle, the Nhulunbuy town Administrator and the co-ordinator of the Yirrkala Arts Centre Will Stubbs.
Mr Hindle says living in Nhulunbuy is like living in a tourist resort without the tourists.
"It's just a terrific lifestyle and a great place to live," he says.
The Deputy Chief Minister Syd Stirling is also the member for Nhulunbuy, after first arriving in the community as a school teacher in 1979.
"It was a very different town then, we had tv on a delayed 24 hour broadcast because the videos were sent over from Darwin so it made for wonderful news because we'd get the live news through ABC Radio but the tv news that night some 24 hours later," he said.
Mr Stirling was a footy umpire in the town as well, and has a reputation for being tough on the players.
"A bit of a challenge, I loved it, it kept me fit and it was my way of contributing to the community," he said.
Nhulunbuy is a centre for Aboriginal culture in the Territory, and in particular, is home to musicians who have made a name for themselves locally and overseas, such as Mandawuy Yunupingu.
Mr Yunupingu told Julia Christensen it's a great place to live, and most of the Aboriginal community support an expansion of the mine.
"I've seen it grow and develop and now we are about to embrace expansion in the next year or so but I think indigenous Australians are prepared for the expansion and starting to adopt and adjust to modern developments and I would think a building of a partnership would be the way to go," he says.
Conexant Unveils Advanced Modulation Satellite Set-Top Box Tuner; Company Sets Industry Milestone with Shipments of 80 Million Tuners and Demodulators
From Press Release
RED BANK, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 28, 2004--Conexant Systems, Inc. (Nasdaq:CNXT), the worldwide leader in semiconductor solutions for broadband communications, enterprise networks and the digital home, today unveiled a third-generation satellite tuner for digital satellite set-top box receivers. The CX24118 direct down-conversion satellite tuner supports 8PSK advanced modulation and coding specifications, providing satellite operators with up to 35 percent higher data throughput rates using existing bandwidth. The highly integrated tuner can be used in conjunction with Conexant's CX24114 advanced modulation satellite demodulator, providing manufacturers with a complete front-end system solution designed to offer optimal system performance.
"Our third-generation satellite tuner, when combined with our new demodulator, allows operators to leverage their existing infrastructure and provide their customers with a wider range of digital-quality programming content and services," said Jeff Crosby, vice president of Set-top Box Products for Conexant. "Conexant has shipped more than 80 million satellite tuners and demodulators to date, and we will continue to leverage our extensive experience to provide advanced system solutions that meet the cost and performance specifications operators require to address an increasingly competitive marketplace."
The highly integrated CX24118 has been designed to meet the stringent performance parameters required for advanced modulation 8PSK and DBS-S2 applications. This tuner offers excellent phase noise performance and very low implementation loss. Features include a fully integrated local oscillator and variable baseband filtering. The device requires a single +3.3V supply and features very low power consumption. The CX24118 has also been designed to reduce bill-of-material (BOM) costs and board space requirements. It is packaged in a small footprint (6mm x 6mm), 36-pin pack QFN, lead-free package and does not require an external balun which reduces overall bill-of-material costs. It also includes a built-in automatic tuning machine that eliminates the need for a software calibration routine and accelerates the calibration time.
Conexant offers a comprehensive suite of digital STB components and system solutions for worldwide satellite, terrestrial and cable entertainment broadcasting networks. The company's product offering includes silicon tuners, satellite communications channel demodulators, MPEG audio and video decoders and dial-up modems for back-channel applications. Complete reference designs that help manufacturers reduce cost and speed time-to-market are also available, bundled together with a range of operating systems, middleware, driver and development tools.
Pricing and Availability
Samples of the CX24118 are available now, with volume production scheduled for the third calendar quarter of 2004. It is priced at $7.00 in quantities of 10,000.
Conexant's innovative semiconductor solutions are driving broadband communications, enterprise networks and digital home networks worldwide. The company has leveraged its expertise and leadership position in modem technologies to enable more Internet connections than all of its competitors combined, and continues to develop highly integrated silicon solutions for broadband data and media processing networks.
Key products include client-side xDSL and cable modem solutions, home network processors, broadcast video encoders and decoders, digital set-top box components and systems solutions, and dial-up modems. Conexant's suite of networking components includes a leadership portfolio of IEEE 802.11a/b/g-compliant WLAN chipsets, software and reference designs, as well as solutions for applications based on HomePlug(SM) and HomePNA(TM). The company also offers a complete line of asymmetric and symmetric DSL central office solutions, which are used by service providers worldwide to deliver broadband data, voice, and video over copper telephone lines.
Conexant is a fabless semiconductor company with annual run-rate revenues of approximately $1.2 billion. The company has approximately 2,400 employees worldwide, and is headquartered in Red Bank, N.J. To learn more, please visit us at www.conexant.com.
Safe Harbor Statement
This press release contains statements relating to our future results (including certain projections and business trends) that are "forward-looking statements" as defined in the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties. These risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to: the cyclical nature of the semiconductor industry and the markets addressed by the company's and its customers' products; demand for and market acceptance of new and existing products; successful development of new products; the timing of new product introductions; the availability of manufacturing capacity; pricing pressures and other competitive factors; changes in product mix; product obsolescence; the ability to develop and implement new technologies and to obtain protection for the related intellectual property; the uncertainties of litigation; and the risk that the businesses of Conexant and GlobespanVirata will not be integrated successfully, as well as other risks and uncertainties, including those detailed from time to time in our Securities and Exchange Commission filings. These forward-looking statements are made only as of the date hereof, and we undertake no obligation to update or revise the forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Note to Editors: Conexant is a trademark of Conexant Systems, Inc. Other brands and names contained in this release are the property of their respective owners.
Conexant Systems, Inc.
Gwen Carlson, 949-483-7363
New Skies Expands Presence In Greece Through NSS-6 Deal With IP Service Provider Com-ToNet S.A.
From Press Release
Athens-Based Teleport Operator and IP Service Provider to Access Full Transponder on NSS-6 Satellite for Internet Services from Europe to the Middle East
New Skies Satellites N.V. (AEX, NYSE:NSK), the global satellite communications company, today announced a new agreement with leading Greek IP service provider and teleport operator Com-ToNet S.A. for a full transponder on the NSS-6 satellite.
Com-ToNet, in collaboration with KB Impuls Hellas S.A. (KBIH), will use the high-powered Ku-band capacity to offer broadband connections to the European Internet backbone for corporations, government agencies, telecommunications companies and Internet service providers operating throughout the Middle East.
Nigel Gibson, New Skies' vice president of European sales, said: "Com-ToNet and its partner KBIH, are established players in the European telecommunications industry, with strong experience and solid reputations for implementing high-quality VSAT networks and offering premium value-added data, voice and Internet services.
"This relationship strengthens our presence in the Greek market. It also reflects the comprehensive and powerful inter-regional coverage offered over NSS-6, which is optimized for communications between Europe and the Middle East."
Gerasimos Bonanos, chief executive officer of Com-ToNet, said: "New Skies is the largest provider of satellite-based IP services worldwide, and its fleet offers some of the best coverage available today of the Middle East, with excellent connectivity to Europe. When combined with our own knowledge of the market and extensive portfolio of integrated services for ISPs and enterprise networks, we are able to offer the most competitive solutions to clients, based on the most advance and reliable technology."
About Com-ToNet S.A.
Founded in October 1999, Com-ToNet S.A. was granted a license by the National Telecommunication and Post Committee to install and employ a satellite network in Greece for the purpose of providing satellite communications services. Com-ToNet uses the most up-to-date VSAT (Very Small Aperture Terminal) technology produced by Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. to provide satellite telecommunications networking solutions and interactive broadband data services.
About New Skies Satellites
New Skies Satellites (AEX, NYSE: NSK) is one of only four fixed satellite communications companies with truly global satellite coverage, offering video, data voice and Internet communications services to a range of telecommunications carriers, broadcasters, large corporations, Internet service providers and government entities around the world. New Skies has five satellites in orbit, ground facilities around the world and one additional spacecraft under construction. The company also has secured certain rights to make use of additional orbital positions for future growth. New Skies is headquartered in The Hague, The Netherlands, and has offices in Beijing, Hong Kong, New Delhi, Sao Paulo, Singapore, Sydney and Washington, D.C. Additional information is available at www.newskies.com.
New Skies Satellites
Jeff Bothwell, Tel: +31 70 306 4239 Mobile + 31 (0)6 11 31 01 83
Prasar Bharati to bring in 20 channels
The Direct to Home (DTH) service of the Prasar Bharati, when launched, would not only bring your favourite TV channels in your living room, but also 20 radio channels of the AIR.
With the commissioning of the DTH, a subscriber would get 20 AIR channels along with a boquet of TV channels through a small dish antennae, AIR director general Brijeshwar Singh has said.
Singh, however, did not elaborate when the DTH of the national broadcaster would become operational. It is still being finalised, he said.
The AIR DG, who came here yesterday in connection with the inauguration of a Regional Staff Training Institute (Technical), the third one established by the Prasar Bharati, said the DTH would be expensive for a common man with the equipment costing a few thousand rupees.
The AIR also introduced digital radio which was very effective in the mountaineous terrain of the North East. Two of its channels were already on the satellite to satiate the thirst of the music-lovers of the region.
Ten's McDonald meets I&B minister Reddy
NEW DELHI: A fortnight ahead of a crucial hearing in the Supreme Court relating to a cricket telecast row between Doordarshan and Ten Sports, senior executives from the latter company met the information and broadcasting minister Jaipal Reddy today.
The meeting was described as a "courtesy call," but the Dubai-based Taj Television Ltd CEO Chris McDonald admitted that various issues relating to sports broadcasting were discussed s part of a general discussion with the minister.
Asked specifically whether the issue of DD-Ten Sports wrangling, now pending a decision in the apex court, was brought up, McDonald replied in the negative.
McDonald was accompanied by Taj TV India head Sarmishta Rijhwani, who added that "nothing specific" was brought up or discussed during the meeting with Reddy.
Ten Sports is involved in a legal wrangle with Indian pubcaster DD over the telecast of the India-Pakistan cricket series, held after 14 years, in Pakistan last year. Ten has been claiming that allowing DD to also show the cricket matches, the rights of which ere obtained exclusively by Ten, has resulted in financial losses.
The Supreme Court, earlier, had directed DD to deposit Rs 500 million with the court, which may be used to cover up Ten Sports alleged losses, if proved in the court.
In turn, DD has been lobbying with the government to enact a legislation that would ensure the terrestrial broadcaster also getting telecast rights of any events that is deemed important for the country, irrespective of the fact whether a private channel has obtained telecast rights or not for India.
ICC-ESPN row: Dish TV likely to be winner
PUNE: The payment dispute between Pune's largest multi-system operator, ICC Pvt Ltd, and ESPN Software India Pvt Ltd, the broadcaster of ESPN and Star Sports channels, has an unlikely gainer.
Some city subscribers are now turning to Dish TV the direct to home (DTH) offering from Zee Group.
"We have seen a 30 per cent growth in sales in Pune this month and the inquiry levels have gone up considerably," said a senior official of New Era Entertainment Network, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Essel Group that looks after Zee's DTH operations.
Even though the ICC-ESPN spat helped push the sales, the company does not want to attribute the entire growth to just that, he said.
A Dish TV connection costs Rs 7,500. This includes a 60-cm dish antenna, a low-noise block, a set top-box and a view card, plus subscription charges for the first three months.
There are two subscription options a basic monthly package for Rs 110 and Rs 220 for the basic plus.
The Rs 220-package offers 48 channels, including five exclusive movie channels and most sports, news and entertainment channels like NDTV, ESPN, Star Sports, Cartoon Network, Doordarshan and Zee-Turner channels.
The company is also talking to Star and Sony to add their channels to its bouquet.
At present, Dish TV is the only DTH service brand in the country, though Star is expected to enter the fray shortly.
Customers opt for it because of better (digital) picture quality, more movie channels and most important, direct transmission, which makes them independent of the middleman and the power failure at his end.
The company has been adding around 600 individual Dish TV connections per month in and around Pune since it was launched in October 2003.
But this month, the connections have gone up to nearly 800, said Sunil Somani, partner of DTH Diamond Satellite Company, one of the two main distributors of Dish TV in Pune.
Currently, there are around 4,000 Dish TV connections in the district, according to him.
"In Pune city alone, this month we sold around 70 connections more than the 300 connections we usually sell every month," he said. The city has around 1,600 connections so far.
Those who do not wish to purchase the dish antenna, also have a long-term rent option. They can pay Rs 3,923 initially and a rent of Rs 33 per month for the next five years. This option is available since May 27 only in Pune and Aurangabad.
The service is compatible with any kind of TV set, including the black and white TVs.
No update due to server problem
Apstar V/ Telstar18 is launching to 138E tomorrow. Check link below for live video there may be some Cband feeds as well.
Current Mission: Telstar 18
Sea Launch is currently preparing for its next mission, the launch of the Telstar 18 communications satellite, on June 28, at 8:59pm PDT (3:59 GMT, June 29). A Sea Launch Zenit-3SL rocket will lift the 4640 kg (10,229 lb) spacecraft to orbit from the Odyssey Launch Platform, positioned on the Equator.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Frank Calabrese
INTERRUPTION TO DIGITAL SIGNAL FOR RAI TV AND RADIO CHANNELS
Heads up for your information, on Asiasat 2.
INTERRUPTION TO DIGITAL SIGNAL FOR RAI TV AND RADIO CHANNELS
Please note that on 29th June 2004, from 2 am until 5 am Italian time, there
will be an interruption in the broadcast of all Rai International television channels for Asia and Africa. This is due to necessary maintenance work.
Due to the same technical problems, in Europe too, on 29th June 2004, from 2 am until 5 am Italian time, there will be an interruption in the signal for
all RAI digital television and radio channels broadcast by EUTELSAT "Hot Bird II" satellite.
We apologise to viewers for the inconvenience caused
From Bill Richards
Disney Channel on 4140 H PIDs 1560/1520 has gone encrypted
ABS-CBN Channel 2 has gone on 3880 V, PIDs 1260/1220
Now a test/bar patern fta
From Steve Hume
Telkom 1 108E Log
4084H, SR: 6000 TransTV_Test1
4075H, SR: 6000 TV7-Network
4066H, SR: 6000 LATIVI NETWORK
4005H, SR: 6000 ANTV DANDUT
3986H, SR: 6000 RO.PALEMBANG (Current)
3986H, SR: 5992 DLD-RO BANDUN (FEEDS) ******
3898H, SR: 2000 9MHz, PAL, 1 Audio
3813H, SR: 6000 DSNG-TV7two (FEEDS) ******
3786H, SR: 6000 Service Name
3460H, SR: 28000 Telkom Vision
3580H, SR: 28000 Telkom Vision
3500H, SR: 28000 Telkom Vision
4195V, SR: 4857 (DATA)
4189V, SR: 2025 (DATA)
4176V, SR: 3253 (DATA)
4130V, SR: 2099 Service Name
3969V, SR: 2025 (DATA)
3844V, SR: 2489 (DATA)
From Mark Fahey
Radio D Istanbul has started FTA on NSS6
12688 Hz 28066 3/4
From the Dish
Quite a big Lyngsat update catching up on the last few days
PAS 2 169E 3836 V Al-Jazeera Satellite Channel is back on , Irdeto, PIDs 2311/2312. New PIDs again for NourSat: 2313/2314.
PAS 2 169E 12673 V The Telstra mux has left .
PAS 8 166E 3706 V "ABC-CBN Channel 1" has started on , Fta, SR 3260, FEC 7/8, PIDs 4096/4097.
PAS 8 166E 3714 V "ABS-CBN Channel 2" has started on , Fta, SR 3260, FEC 7/8, PIDs 4096/4097.
PAS 8 166E 3815 V "Arirang TV World 2" is encrypted again.
PAS 8 166E 3836 V "TVBS Golden and TVBS Asia" are now encrypted.
PAS 8 166E 3860 H "CSN" has left , replaced by occasional feeds.
PAS 8 166E 3880 V "ABS-CBN Channel 2" has left , replaced by a test card.
PAS 8 166E 3880 V ABS-CBN Channel 2-3 have left . DZMM - Radyo Patrol is now in clear.
PAS 8 166E 4140 H "Disney Channel South Korea" has started , Enc, PIDs 1560/1520.
Optus C1 156E 12305 H "FYI" is now encrypted.
Optus B3 152E 12525 V "The Church Channel" has left .
Optus B3 152E 12525 V "Suryan FM" has started on , Fta, APID 1622.
Optus B3 152E 12658 V "The Church Channel" has started on , Fta, PIDs 504/570.
Optus B3 152E 12701 V "ABC TV Western and Dig Radio" have started on , Fta, SR 14288,FEC 7/8, PIDs 2309/2310 and 2312.
Optus B3 152E 12720 V "SBS Western (HD), SBS Western, SBS World News Channel and SBS EPG" have started on , Fta, SR 12600, FEC 5/6, PIDs 102/103, 161/81-163/85.
Optus B3 152E 12738 V "Win TV (Australia) and GWN" have started on , Irdeto, SR 14295, FEC 7/8, PIDs 33/36 and 2910/2911.
Agila 2 146E 3870 H New PIDs for ABC 5 on : 1160/1120.
Agila 2 146E 12541 V "Divine Mercy Channel" has started on , Fta, PIDs 50/51.
Agila 2 146E 12301 H "Comelec Channel" is now encrypted.Updates in Dream Satellite TV:
Agila 2 146E 4UTV has moved from 12661 H to 12581 H, Fta, PIDs
Apstar 1A 134E 4054 H A test card has started on , Fta, SR 4420, FEC 3/4, PIDs 160/80.
JCSAT 3 128E 3960 V "FTV Entertainment, TTV, CTS and CTV" are Fta.
Palapa C2 113E 3875 V A test card has started on , Fta, SR 5200, FEC 3/4, PIDs 33/36.
Sinosat 1 110.5E "Hunan University Satellite TV" has moved from 3990 V to 3824 V, Fta, SR 2100, FEC 2/3, PIDs 100/110.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3855 V "Chinese Sat Network TV" has left .
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3872 V "Occasional CNC feeds" on , SR 14590, FEC 3/4.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3890 V "Occasional feeds" on , SR 3167, FEC 3/4.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 3984 V "Occasional China Stock TV feeds" on , SR 3167, FEC 3/4.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 12665 V "Occasional feeds" on , SR 5790, FEC 3/4.
Sinosat 1 110.5E 12460 H "China Stock TV" has started on , Fta, SR 2893, FEC 1/2, PIDs 33/36.
Telkom 1 108E 3460 H "Musik" has left .
Telkom 1 108E 3500 H "Ar-Rahman Channel" has left , replaced by a test card.
Telkom 1 108E 3580 H "ARY Digital UK" has left .
Telkom 1 108E 3786 H "Occasional feeds" on , SR 6000, FEC 3/4.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4140 V "Smile TV" has replaced Zee TV Asia on , Fta, PIDs 100/101.
AsiaSat 2 100.5E 4020 V "EuroSport News" is now encrypted.
AsiaSat 2 100.5E 4020 V New PIDs for EuroSport News on: 1213/1313.
AsiaSat 2 100.5E 4020 V The test card has left .
AsiaSat 2 100.5E 4148 V "CBN" has started testing on Fta, PIDs 350/351.
Gorizont 28 96.5E 3915 R "Telekanal Rossiya" has left (SECAM).
NSS 6 95E 11038 H An Eenadu TV mux has started on , Fta, SR 40700, FEC 2/3,line-up and PIDs identical to Insat 2E: 4005 V.
NSS 6 95E 11156 V "A New Skies promo" has started on , Fta, SR 2170, FEC 3/4, PIDs 257/258, Chinese beam.
NSS 6 95E 11456 H "A New Skies promo" has started on , Fta, SR 2170, FEC 3/4,PIDs 257/258, Middle East beam.
NSS 6 95E 11543 V "Free-XTV" has left .
NSS 6 95E 11543 V The New Skies promo has left .
NSS 6 95E 11679 V "Al-Islah TV" is still on , Fta, SR 2000, FEC 2/3, PIDs 4194/4195.
NSS 6 95E 12688 H "Radyo D" has started on , Fta APID 2306.
NSS 6 95E 12729 V DD National, DD News, DD Sports, DD Bharati, DD India, DD Bangla,DD Gujarati, DD Malayalam, DD Oriya and DD Punjab have started on, Fta, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, PIDs 511/611-520/620.(India beam)
NSS 6 95E The DISH TV muxes have left 12534 V, 12595 V and 12688 V again.
Insat 3A 93.5E 3913 V New PIDs for Cine World on : 258/259.
Insat 3A 93.5E 4132 V "RTA has started regular transmissions" on , Fta, SR 4000, FEC 3/4,PIDs 308/256.
Yamal 102 90E 3576 L Tyumenskoe Vremya, Hit FM and Kanal Melodia are back on , Fta, SR 4357, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256, 256 and 257.
Yamal 201 90E 4021 R "Rambler TeleSet (+0h)" has left .
ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" is back on , Fta, SR 5632, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.
Insat 2E 83E
New PIDs for DD Bangla on 3832 V: 4470/4670.
New PIDs for DD Punjab on 3841 V: 4480/4680.
New PIDs for DD Gujarati on 3850 V: 4450/4650.
New PIDs for DD Chandana on 3859 V: 4410/4610.
New PIDs for DD Malayalam on 3912 V: 4430/4630.
New PIDs for DD Saptagiri on 3919 V: 4440/4640.
New PIDs for DD Podhigai and AIR Rainbow FM on 3931 V: 4420/4620 and 4820.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H "Talk Sport" is back on , Fta, APID 513.
LMI 1 75E Three test cards have started on 12518 V, Fta, PIDs 901/902, 1301/1302 and 1701/1702.
PAS 10 68.5E 4099 V A test card has started on , Fta, PIDs 2306/2307.
PAS 10 68.5E 4132 H" A Geo 2 test card" has started on , Fta, SR 3300, FEC 2/3, PIDs 33/36.
PAS 10 68.5E 12577 V "Radio Vida" has started on , enc., APID 2065.
PAS 10 68.5E 12642 H "Telly Track" has started on , Fta, SR 2170, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256,Africa & European beam.
PAS 10 68.5E 12687 V "Telly Track" has left .
PAS 7 68.5E 11674 V "The Hope Channel" has started on ,Fta, PIDs 260/261.
Sea Launch at Equator, Preparing for Telstar 18 Mission
From Press Release
The Sea Launch team will initiate a 72-hour countdown tonight in preparation for the launch of Loral's Telstar 18 communications satellite, scheduled for Monday, June 28, in a launch window that will open at 8:59pm PDT (3:59 GMT, June 29). All systems are proceeding on schedule.
The Odyssey Launch Platform and her sister ship, the Sea Launch Commander, arrived at the launch site at 154 degrees West Longitude last night. The marine crew began the process of ballasting the Launch Platform about 65 feet, to launch depth, in preparation for launch operations. The vessels will be stationed alongside each other throughout the weekend, frequently connected by a link bridge that enables foot traffic between them.
On the day of launch, the platform will be evacuated and all personnel will be stationed on the ship, positioned three miles uprange, throughout launch operations. Sea Launch's Zenit-3SL vehicle will lift the 4640 kg (10,229 lb) Telstar 18 spacecraft to a high perigee geosynchronous transfer orbit, on its way to a final orbital position at 138 degrees East Longitude.
Built by Space Systems/Loral and operated by Loral Skynet, both subsidiaries of Loral Space & Communications, the high-powered 1300-model spacecraft will carry 54 active transponders - 16 Ku-band transponders and 38 C-band transponders - that will cover the Asia/Pacific region with multiple services, including cable programming, direct-to-home broadcasting, Internet, VSAT and IP-based two-way services within Asia while providing an inter-connect to the United States.
Sea Launch will provide a live satellite broadcast of the Telstar 18 mission on June 28, beginning at 8:40pm PDT (3:40 GMT, June 29). The launch program, featuring live video from the launch site as well as commentary and interviews, may be downlinked from satellite coordinates posted at: www.boeing.com/nosearch/sealaunch/broadcast.html A simultaneous webcast will be posted at: www.sea-launch.com/current_index_webcast.html
Sea Launch Company, LLC, headquartered in Long Beach, Calif., and marketed through Boeing Launch Services ( www.boeing.com/launch ), is the world's most reliable commercial heavy-lift launch services provider. This multinational partnership offers the most direct and cost-effective route to geostationary orbit. With the advantage of a launch site on the Equator, the reliable Zenit-3SL rocket can lift a heavier spacecraft mass or provide longer life on orbit, offering best value plus schedule assurance. For additional information and images of this mission, please visit the Sea Launch website at: www.sea-launch.com
Joint venture for TV market
A JOINT venture between a local company and an overseas television network is expected to challenge Fiji Television's current grip on viewers with 15 pay-TV channels.
Pacific Broadcasting Services director Berenado Vunibobo said it had entered into a partnership with Australian-based television company, Television and Radio Broadcasting Services (TARBS).
Mr Vunibobo said TARBS has a worldwide TV network, which included links in European countries like France, Portugal, Spain, as well as Australasian countries such as India, Bangladesh and Australia.
"At the moment we're trying to enter into partnership with the Fiji Broadcasting Corporation Limited as well as the Ba Provincial Holdings Limited to get the project off the ground," Mr Vunibobo said.
The start-up package to sign up to the network was expected to include a portable satellite dish and a decoder at $399, with a monthly
subscription fee of between $40 and $49.
"Our coverage would mean that anyone anywhere in Fiji will be able to use our services and the satellite dish and the decoder belongs to them," Mr Vunibobo said. All 15 channels will be sourced from TARBS's network links in Europe and Asia and will include three Hindi channels as well as BBC, CNN, Discovery and specific movie channels.
With the mother station based in Australia and satellite transmission being the link to Fiji, Mr Vunibobo said Pacific Broadcasting had no intention of applying for a TV operating licence.
"Since all our infrastructure will be based off-shore and the only services we will need is the Government's approval for setting up satellite dishes, we felt that we did not need to apply for a licence," Mr Vunibobo said.
"However, since we do not want to cause any problems, we felt obliged to at least apply for a licence but we will be paying the Government some $56 as a fee for setting up satellite equipment," he said.
(Craig comment, This will be interesting Fiji TV are also launching their own paytv 15 channel service but via Nss5 at 177W!)
Asia to launch first commercial earth observation satellite: report
TOKYO : Japanese trading house Itochu Corp., satellite communication firm Jsat Corp. and three other firms plan to jointly launch earth observation (EO) satellites as soon as 2008, becoming the first in Asia to do so, a news report said on Saturday.
The group, which also includes NTT Data Corp., Imageone Co. and NEC Toshiba Space Systems Ltd., seeks to gain a foothold in the commercial satellite imaging market, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun said.
The five firms will establish a jointly held company in August, with plans to launch two satellites in 2008 or later, it said.
The new entity will have an initial capital base of 200 million yen (US$1.8 million), and its president will be sent from Itochu, it said.
The low-altitude remote sensing satellites to be used will orbit the earth at about 500 to 1,000 kilometres, the Nihon Keizai said.
They will employ the most advanced commercial-satellite-compatible cameras, enabling them to provide images of objects smaller than one metre across.
The satellites will cover nearly all points on earth, the newspaper said.
While government-affiliated entities in Japan have launched multiple EO satellites to observe weather-related phenomena, the nation's civil satellite industry has been limited to such sectors as communications and broadcasting, the newspaper said. - AFP
New Chips Improve Color TV Dramatically
Israeli scientists said they have developed the biggest improvement in color television in 50 years, surpassing even high-definition technology, with electronics that nearly double the color palate that can be displayed on a TV screen.
The novel, multi-primary color or MPC chips, from Israeli electronics company Genoa Color Technologies in Herzlia Pituach, are set to deliver a picture that looks more like cinema than video, with truer, more vibrant color and a brighter image.
The first commercial release of the chips will be from industry giant Royal Philips Electronics next year, experts told United Press International.
The basic way color televisions work has not changed much since RCA introduced its first color set in 1954: colors are produced by combining shades of red, green and blue, also known as RGB, light. This is different from the colors on a movie screen, which are created by shining bright white light through colored film. This is why film images have always looked more detailed and natural than video.
It seems a little odd to make yellow by adding red and green together, Simon Lewis, Genoa's vice president of marketing, told UPI.
If you take the most expensive plasma screen, bring it to local cinema, and run the movie beside it, you'd be sick that you spent the kind of money you did on the plasma screen, Mark Bruce, a Genoa spokesman at HiTechPR in Rye, N.Y., told UPI.
The new Genoa chip adds up to three more colors, such as yellow and turquoise.
With this you see all of the colors of the rainbow. As opposed to the normal TV, which shows 55 percent of the color gamut, Genoa can show 90 to 95 percent -- the difference is astounding, Bruce said.
Television broadcast signals carry data on the full range of color in a picture, information that normally gets lost when converted for use on RGB screens. The new chips translate existing video data into pictures made with the additional colors with the help of advanced, real-time algorithms. When combined with new television screens such as liquid crystal displays, or LCDs, the result is images with the extra primary colors in their palette.
We can take any signal -- standard or high-definition, broadcast, satellite or cable, VCR or DVD or TiVo -- and can show that content in advanced form, Lewis said. We're not just adding colors, we're changing the way we state colors. White is not just made of red, green and blue, but all the primary colors, so the balance of white is coming off differently with the multi-primary color technology than with RGB screens.
The result is not only a much larger range of color, but up to 40 percent greater perception in brightness. It is like comparing an RGB array with a rainbow. The one presents only three colors while the other offers a wider selection.
I think it's extremely promising, said Josh Bernoff, a television industry analyst Forrester Research, a technology analysis firm in Boston. There are a lot of ways to improve television, he told UPI, and most of them involve either something extremely expensive for the consumer, such as buying a great big flat screen television, or changing the whole production of television, like the switch from regular to high-definition television. Genoa has done something very simple that can make a dramatic difference in visual technology.
Genoa will ship the first of the MPC chips in the third quarter of 2004, and Philips will introduce a new line of liquid crystal on silicon, or LCOS, rear-projection TV sets with the chips in 2005.
We see the value proposition of the multi-primary picture performance to be thoroughly compelling, said Andre Papoular, Philips Consumer Electronics senior vice president. The company will no longer sell regular RGB rear- projection sets, replacing them with sets bearing the MPC chips.
Though traditional, cathode-ray tube television sets cannot take advantage of the chip, liquid crystal sets are the target. I think you'll see this become a standard technology for LCD flat panel sets within the next three to four years, Bernoff said.
Lewis said Genoa is focused on penetrating the flat-screen LCD TV market, for at least 10 million units -- maybe to go as high as 18 to 20 million units. Leading manufacturers of LCD TVs include Sharp in Japan, Samsung and LG.Philips in Korea and CMO and AUO in Taiwan.
In theory, we expect to see that down the road -- 2006 or so -- multiple brands will be selling multi-primary color LCD televisions, Lewis said, noting his company is in talks with several LCD TV companies regarding the MPC chips.
BROADCASTING: China asks for Thai-language TV channels
‘Unofficial request’ from CCTV sparks concern that Kingdom’s cultural identity is at risk
China’s satellite television company has expressed interest in launching up to 40 Thai-language channels in Thailand, according to Grisanaporn Soempanich, head of the directing board of the broadcast division of the government’s Public Relations Department.
Grisanaporn said representatives from CCTV paid him an unofficial visit recently to inquire about broadcasting the satellite television channels in Thailand. He asked them to wait until the National Broadcasting Commission, which will regulate the industry and issue permits for broadcasting frequencies, is established.
CCTV’s interest in Thailand sparked concern that the Thai government is selling the broadcasting industry down the river through the various free trade agreements (FTAs) it is rushing into.
Nirun Phitakwat-chara, chairman of the Senate Committee of Social Development and Human Security, said the FTAs including the one signed with China last year and the pact being negotiated with the US open the door for giant telecommunications companies to step in and dominate the local market.
“Is the prime minister selling Thailand’s national assets under FTAs?” Nirun asked rhetorically.
Supinya Klang-narong, secretary-general of the Campaign for Popular Media Reform, said radio and television are not like other commodities, which can be traded for profit.
“If the industry is dominated by big commercial firms that have no expertise in creating media content, local viewers will see lower-quality programmes on their TV screens. Overseas’ programme content will be dumped on the market and destroy local program producers,” said Supinya.
She suggested that the government should codify new rules and regulations limiting the stake foreign companies can hold in Thai media outlets to protect them from multinational companies with the financial wherewithal to control the market.
Grisanaporn said if CCTV entered the market it would mean big changes for Thailand’s television industry, which would no longer be limited to a few local players. CCTV owns more than 80 satellite television channels.
“The coming of CCTV to Thailand and in the Thai language would change our Thai culture and lives,” he said.
Grisanaporn said television viewing is moving toward cable television. There are currently 1.9 million cable television subscribers in 43 provinces, excluding UBC, which has 400,000 customers.
He said the trade agreements would also allow multinational companies to invade Thailand’s tourism, movie and other media industries.
Thailand in the future would be similar to developed countries like the United States, where free television accounts for just 20 per cent of all viewers, said Narong Chaovarad, assistant managing director of Media of Medias Plc.
“Viewers around the world will be more segmented and they need cable TV channels, which serve their niches,” he said.
THAILAND: Airwaves regulator a year away
The National Broadcasting Commission, the independent regulatory agency that could end all arguments over television and radio frequency rights, is unlikely to be formed for at least another year
The National Broadcasting Commission, the independent regulatory agency that could end all arguments over television and radio frequency rights, is unlikely to be formed for at least another year - dashing hopes that it could usher in public control over broadcasting stations and resolve conflicts at TV Channels 5 and 11.
Prime Minister's Office secretary-general Yongyuth Sarasombat said the selection panel is not yet ready; it is still short of three members.
In a letter to 159 NGOs, Mr Yongyuth said they will be called for a meeting once their status has been examined. Then the NGOs could select from among themselves three people to sit on the 17-member selection panel.
Checks on qualifications are likely to be completed next month. The screening process in which 14 candidates will be picked could then start, but would take six months to complete. The Senate will then spend at least another six months to choose seven out of the 14 candidates.
The news is likely to upset media reform activists. With a general election just around the corner, they believe frequencies are now at their most vulnerable - business groups are racing to secure benefits before any change of government.
Somkiat Tangkijwanit, of the Thailand Development and Research Institute (TDRI), said the situation could worsen in the next few months.
"Business groups will do as much as they can to protect their interests. A case in point is Channel 11 and Channel 5," he said.
State-run Channel 11 plans to launch two new satellite stations while Channel 5 has awarded a 30-year concession to RTA Entertainment Plc. Critics believe the deals breach the Airwaves Act.
Article 80 prohibits allocation of airwaves, issuance of new permits, and new operators while the NBC is not yet in place.
As the NBC has yet to be created, the prime minister and the Public Relations Department have been designated as caretaker authorities.
"Channel 5 and Channel 9 are rushing to list on the stock exchange. Wouldn't that pose a problem for NBC?" he asked.
Mr Somkiat said the government needs a policy for handling the matter, and said public opinion should be considered.
Supinya Klangnarong, secretary-general to Campaign for Media Reform, said any changes at Channel 5, Channel 9 and Channel 11 should be subject to public scrutiny.
Channel 3 and Channel 7 long ago awarded 30-year concessions to Bangkok Entertainment Co for 3.2 billion baht and to Bangkok TV and Radio Co for 4.6 billion baht respectively.
She said the state was inviting business operators to seize the airwaves and create problems for NBC.
"NBC will be meaningless when it comes into existence. There will barely be any airwaves for them to regulate by that time," she said.
Suriyasai Katasila, secretary-general of Campaign for Political Reforms, said the government has two tasks - speeding up creation of the NBC and keeping business groups from exploiting the airwaves for the time being.
RNT would tear up deal if NBC in place soon
RNT Television is willing to abandon its two-year contract to co-produce news programmes for satellite TV Channel 11/1 if the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) is established soon.
RNT chief executive officer Police Colonel Ruamnakorn Tubtimthongchai said yesterday the firm had acknowledged in writing to the Public Relations Department (PRD) a state order that its contract would expire once the NBC was established.
The PRD, which oversees TV Channel 1, awarded the deal to RNT late last year to co-produce 24-hour news programmes for its satellite TV Channel 11/1.
Ruamnakorn said RNT was also willing to allow the PRD to amend its contract to co-produce news programmes if need were.
"Neither will we ask for any compensation from the PRD if such an amendment really takes place. This is to show that we're ready to comply with the state order," he added.
He said RNT's contract with the PRD stated that the PRD could revoke the deal at any time after giving the company 30 days' notice.
Ruamnakorn admitted that the condition put the company in a risky position.
The Supreme Administrative Court last year aborted the NBC's establishment on the grounds that the proposed system of selecting commissioners lacked transparency.
The Prime Minister's Office this year began the process anew of setting up the NBC and is now naming a committee to select seven qualified commissioners.
MCOT slates stock sale for October
First agency to list under new rules
The Mass Communication Organisation of Thailand (MCOT), operator of television Channel 9, yesterday unveiled details of its plan to raise Bt7 billion through an initial public offering in October.
The state agency plans to use most of the money to invest in its Global TV Network, a satellite television company, said MCOT director Mingkwan Sangsuwan.
The sale will mark the first stock sale under new state-agency regulations for IPO share allotment, approved in April.
Pornpimol Churuphant, director of the State Enterprise Development Office - which is partly responsible for overseeing MCOT's transformation into a quasi-public entity - said the shares would be sold at the beginning of October, stock market sentiment permitting.
"The majority of the shares will be allotted to domestic investors," she said.
Shares will be priced at Bt35 each.
There will be three tiers of share allotment - one for investors looking to invest less than Bt100,000, another for investors willing to put down between Bt100,000 and Bt500,000, and the third for investors looking to risk more than Bt500,000.
No subscriber will be allowed to buy more than 5 per cent the total shares on offer. Foreign investors can hold no more than 15 per cent of the available shares.
"We have learnt many lessons from earlier state-enterprise share offerings, so we have tried to make this share offering as transparent as possible," she said.
MCOT will register to change its status to a public company on July 31, when its moniker will change to MCOT Plc, said Boonchai Sriprachaya-anunt, executive vice president of investment banking for Phatra Securities Co, the agency's IPO adviser.
At that point, the company will have Bt3 billion in registered capital, consisting of 600 million shares with a par value of Bt5 each. The Ministry of Finance will own all of MCOT Plc until the IPO.
Between 20 to 25 per cent of the company will come up for sale during the IPO, leaving the rest in the hands of the Finance Ministry.
Boonchai said MCOT would file the necessary papers with the Securities and Exchange Commission by August.
The number of shares has yet to be determined, he said, adding that the proportion of domestic and foreign shareholding might change.
MCOT plans to expand Channel 9's reach to 12 countries: the United States, Canada, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, India, China, Australia and three Scandinavian countries, said Mingkwan.
"We are a small country, but it would be great to broadcast all information related to our business opportunities to the world," the agency's director added.
The remaining proceeds from the IPO will be used in the government's push to make Thailand a news centre in the region.
MCOT has been trying to persuade many international news agencies to open offices in its business complex.
So far, four international news agencies having committed: Japan's NHK, China's CCTV, KBS of South Korea and TV5 from Europe.
Another three international news agencies - CNN, BBC and CNBC - are in talks with MCOT.
MCOT is also at the centre of changing the country's information technology to digital.
"In developed countries, all IT has been changed to digital. If we don't follow the trend we will be left behind," said Mingkwan.
MCOT yesterday held its fourth public hearing at the Bangkok International Trade & Exhibition Centre.
The hearing drew 200 participants, less than expected.
Sukhum Chaleysub, president of Suan Dusit Rajabhat University, who sits on MCOT's public hearing committee, said hearings had gone well due to the good preparation by the organisation's management and the hard work of its staff.
"The privatisation of MCOT will benefit both its staff and the public," he said.
After the initial public offering, he added, the organisation's employees would be more alert and work more efficiently, while the public will have access to quality news reporting from both domestic and international sources.
No Update Sunday
No Update Saturday
Sorry todays update as usual being a Friday is late. Staying up all night waiting for the cricket to start didn't help things either.
The big news for today is the "Satellite Opportunities Discussion Paper" Released at
I'm not going to make any comment on it as yet as I need to read through it a few more times. It is open to anyone to make comment or respond to the points bought up. So now is the time to have your say.
Here is the Intro to it.
Media Statement from Hon David Cunliffe, Associate Minister of Communications
24 June 2004
"It is time to look at whether New Zealand needs access to more satellite infrastructure." said Associate Minister of Communications David Cunliffe, who today released a public discussion paper on satellite communications.
"Satellites have become very much a part of our daily lives. They bring us news and entertainment from across the globe, they carry our public broadcasting services, they provide accurate navigation markers for ships and aircraft, and they guide search-and-rescue operations by sea and land." said David Cunliffe.
"Most important of all, perhaps, they help us to pick up a phone or press a key to be in instant touch with the rest of the world."
"There is potential for commercial entities to work with the Government to further develop satellite infrastructure." David Cunliffe said, "This discussion paper will assist development of policies for working with these entities and help gauge the level of demand for new satellite capacity for New Zealand."
The document is available at New Zealand Satellite Opportunities: Discussion Paper. Responses are requested by 30 July 2004.
Contact Julian Kersey 04-471 9116, 021-811 999.
Question to end the week on.
Which Ethnic TV provider was in the Supreme Court on Wednesday and lost the case to have continued access to certain services?
From my Emails & ICQ
Pas8 Arirang TV FTA
Pas8 3815V 4400 3/4 Airiang TV is presently FTA. Powtek shows the stream FTA but ID Digital shows scrambled. Usually it's the other way
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 3880 V "ABS-CBN Channel 3" is Fta at the .
Worldsat 1 108.8E HBS and Human TV have left 12411 V, replaced by occasional feeds.
Measat 1 91.5E 4147 H "TV 3 (Malaysia)" is encrypted (Euro 2004 issues I bet, so temp?).
Yamal 201 90E 4084 R "Radio Disco" has started on , Fta, APID 4152.
Telecom probes rural broadband interest
Fieldays keeps to simpler links as telco commits $58m
The idea of "remote farming" over broadband connections holds some appeal for rural early adopters, but there was little evidence of it at the country's pre-eminent agricultural showcase.
Telecom rural strategy manager David Walker reported “a steady stream of farmers” viewing the telco’s exhibits at the Mystery Creek Agricultural Fieldays near Hamilton last week. But while the word “broadband” was used a lot, he found it difficult to suggest rural applications today that would need large bandwidth.
Many of the capabilities on show involved telemetry of one kind or another, says Walker. “There is flow metering in real time; the milk monitor, which we’ve had [at the Fieldays] before, measuring temperature and volume and alerting the farmer if the milk is too hot or too cold.”
Real-time measurements of moisture and other soil data also showed the capabilities of “remote farming”, and Walker sees real-time monitoring of machinery improving maintenance.
But the only application really utilising broadband was a security camera watching a tractor in a shed, he said. “We’re trying not to get too high-tech; we want to show applications that the farmers can [readily] appreciate.”
Telecom is hoping some of the farmers and rural businesses will come up with ideas to utilise broadband in co-operation with Telecom, and there were some preliminary approaches of that kind at the show.
The remote farming developments are being undertaken in cooperation with Timaru IT integrators and rural specialists BayCity New Zealand. Monitoring of operations and the ability to give early warning of malfunction “may mean the end of losses caused by irrigation or refrigeration failures, or unnecessary electricity usage”, says BayCity’s Solon Payne.
An irrigation system under development will monitor the progress of mobile irrigators across a paddock and alert a farmer if they stop a potential disaster for dairy farmers pumping effluent back onto pasture.
Telecom chief Theresa Gattung turned up at Fieldays to promise that Telecom will invest over $58 million on the rural telecommunications network in the financial year from July 2004.
As part of its capital investment, she says, Telecom will be installing 350 new DSLAM switches, mainly in rural communities, to improve the capacity of local exchanges and increase the reach of its JetStream network.
Some of this development will be assisted by the government’s Project Probe funding.
Telecom had hoped to have a broadband satellite service on show, as a result of a planned collaboration with Asian operator Shin Satellite, but the commercial details of the scheme were still under negotiation last week.
The Fieldays exhibit was also remarkable for the number of children it attracted, Walker says. "I suppose you could see it as an investment in the future, but some of them are obviously very adept at working computers, and at getting them to display different pages from the ones we want to show."
Pakeha have eye on Maori TV
More Pakeha are watching Maori Television than Maori, according to the first ratings figures from the new broadcaster.
The Nielsen Media Research ratings for the channel's UHF broadcasts show that 65 per cent of viewers in the first 12 weeks were Pakeha and 35 per cent Maori.
The figures show that 358,000 individuals tuned in to Maori Television at some stage during the 12 weeks after it began broadcasting in March, 35 per cent of them Maori.
In its first week, 126,000 viewers tuned in, 59 per cent of them Maori.
For the past four weeks, an average 249,000 people watched the channel at some stage, 56 per cent of them non-Maori. The audience peaked in the second four weeks on air, averaging 300,000, half Maori and half non-Maori.
Maori Television spokeswoman Sonya Haggie said the channel was pleased by how many Pakeha were watching.
She said many more, both Maori and Pakeha, were watching it through Sky, but they were not yet being measured in the Nielsen ratings.
The channel's five top-rating shows for all viewers aged over 5 were Marae DIY, the Sunday movie, Korero Mai (the daily language class within a soap opera), Kai Time on the Road (a cooking show) and the dip into the archives show Nga Puna/Maumahara.
China to launch second satellite in "Double Star Project"
China is scheduled to launch the second probe satellite of the "Double Star Project" by the end of July, said sources with the Commission of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defense.
The commission made the announcement Thursday, declaring the satellite and the carrier rocket have met the requirements for launching.
The satellite, or Probe No. 2, will be China's first civil satellite to be launched in 2004. It was jointly developed by a company under the China Aerospace Technology Corporation, the Chinese Academy of Sciences and five European research institutes under the European Space Agency.
The "Double Star Project" is the first China-Europe joint satellite probe. It was designed to probe important areas of two magnetic fields of geospace which have never been covered by any satellites, comprising the earth's magnetic field, ionosphere and middle to high layers of atmosphere.
Compared with Probe No. 1, which was launched last December, Probe No. 2 is much improved in magnetic clarity.
Once Probe No. 2 is successfully launched, the two satellites would start human beings' first probe into earth space from six dimensions. The system would be capable of probing the incidence and development of catastrophic space weather.
The probe would provide scientific data for safety of space activities and protection of humans' living environment, said Sun Laiyan, director of the China National Space Administration.
"The successful launch of Probe No. 2 is key to the implementation of the Double Star Project and would prove to the world China's ability in developing satellites for scientific probe," said Sun.
The satellite is slated to blast off aboard a Long March 2C/SM carrier rocket. This will be the 77th launch of the Long March rocket.
THAILAND: Visanu wants Channel 11 contract change
Panel set up to probe frequency deals
Deputy Prime Minister Visanu Krue-ngarm, under pressure to prevent exploitation of broadcasting frequencies, has told the Public Relations Department to re-schedule Channel 11/1 and 11/2 contracts to coincide with the day the Senate names the seven members of the National Broadcasting Commission.
Mr Visanu also set up a 10-member panel, chaired by the Council of State secretary-general, to see whether the PRD breached the constitution in distributing Channel 11's frequency to PL Television Co and Braveheart International Co.
The firms hold a two-year contract, expiring at the end of 2005, to run Channel 11/1, a 24-hour news station, and Channel 11/2, a 24-hour sports station.
Critics said the arrangement was in breach of article 80 of the frequency management law which bars allocation of new frequencies and the issuing of new broadcasting licences while the NBC, an independent broadcasting regulator, is not yet set up.
Mr Visanu said the PRD must change the contracts in 30 days so they stay valid only until the Senate picks the seven NBC members.
He also asked the PRD to delay its plan to open Channels 11/3 to 11/8 to spare the state any troubles that may follow.
Broadcasting signals for Channels 11/1 and 11/2 must be relayed via satellite from the provinces, such as Khon Kaen or Chiang Mai or Songkhla, and relay stations in those provinces would be paid, Mr Visanu said.
The PRD had insisted that a cabinet resolution bars Channel 11 from running commercials only in programmes broadcast from Bangkok, and that Channels 11/1 and 11/2 could carry advertisements if signals were relayed from the provinces. Analyst Somkiat Tangkijwanich, however, said the PRD did not speak the whole truth when it said it only divided Channel 11's frequency for further use but did not allocate new frequencies to PL Television and Braveheart International.
Mr Somkiat, who attended a hearing on Channels 11/1 and 11/2 organised by the Senate commitee on social development and human security, said he thought that Channel 11 had not given its contract partners its frequency, but new frequencies.
Technically, the station could not carve up its frequency. If it should do so, the process would be technically complicated and costly, the analyst said. At present, Channels 11/1 and 11/2 were broadcasting via a ThaiCom satellite belonging to Shin Satellite Co. ``They have to use the ThaiCom service to get the signals to viewers. They are operating on different frequencies,'' Mr Somkiat said. ``These are new services which look in danger of breaching the law.''
Vishanu: contracts to be amended
Deputy Prime Minister Vishanu Krua-ngam yesterday ordered amendments to the operating contracts of controversial new satellite channels 11/1 and 11/2.
He said the order had been given to ensure the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has a free hand over the channels upon its establishment.
Vishanu said any contract involving the new satellite channels - created by state-run Channel 11 - must expire as soon as the Senate approves the list of NBC members.
The selection of NBC members has dragged on for years, delaying the establishment of the broadcasting regulator.
Vishanu yesterday instructed the Public Relations Department (PRD), which runs Channel 11, to amend any contract it had with private operators for channels 11/1 and 11/2 within 30 days.
The amended drafts must also be forwarded to the Office of Attorney General for review, he added.
"PRD director-general Suchat Suchatvejapoom will take charge of negotiations to amend the contracts. He will remain in his post to carry out the duty," he said.
Vishanu rejected Suchat's offer to resign as a result of the scandal.
The deputy PM's order also requires the PRD to disclose contract details to the public.
According to the order, the PRD must also suspend any plan to create six more satellite channels - channels 11/3 to 11/8. It must also explain how the creation of eight more satellite channels could deliver maximum benefits to the public and the government.
The PRD leased one satellite-TV channel from the Thaicom 2 satellite before switching to Thaicom 3, which enables it to digitally expand the channel into eight new channels.
The department has already contacted private production houses to make programmes for channels 11/1 and 11/2. This has raised questions over whether the PRD has breached the frequency-allocation law, which bans state agencies from awarding new broadcasting licences or expanding a business without permission from the NBC.
Vishanu said information about alleged irregularities was welcomed at the complaint boxes addressed to Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra and the National Counter Corruption Commission.
He added that a panel had already been set up to review the PRD's explanation over the new channels.
The panel, chaired by the Council of State secretary-general, includes law experts and university lecturers, he said.
Fans mourn passing of beloved show
"I don't believe that. I don't believe that," read the Wednesday reply to a post on Pantip.com's Chalermthai entertainment Web board, as a tiny animated face sobbed.
On this Web board heartbroken fans usually cry in denial over their idols' weddings, but this time their tearful words and icons were not directed at any one star.
The sad words were matched to over a score of posts that read: "'Thini Prated Thai' (This Is Thailand) got axed from Channel 5's schedule….It was confirmed."
For the past two days fans of the nightly TV show, soon to be ditched from the station's controversial new schedule, ranted on several Web boards expressing sorrow and anger over the talk show's removal.
But the epicentre of their impassioned feelings came through on the programme's website.
Exactly 24 hours after the first comment was posted on Wednesday evening, 1,927 messages had flooded the programme's official homepage, which had turned into an official goodbye page that asked fans to share their feelings.
"[I'm] sick of this country. [It's] no good to do good things. Next time the programme's title should be changed to "Thini Prated Khrai" (This Is "Whose" Land)," read the first comment.
Subsequent posts also condemned the removal and waxed on the programme, which prided itself on helping needy people and promoting the brighter side of the country's people and heritage.
"I watched the show and could not hold my tears. Speechless," read a comment posted after the hosts, apparently in tears, told the viewers on Wednesday night that the programme would be terminated by the end of the month.
"It was my brother's favourite programme….He died last year. But I won't forget him clutching a notebook in front of the TV to write down what he saw on the show," one comment read.
Some comments had a different note of depression. "I could not manage to call them and get a free umbrella. Now they are off. Sorry, Mom. I could not make it," one regretful post read.
And some were from thousands of kilometres away.
"You have helped lots of poor people. You have made their lives brighter. It's such a great feelings to see those smiles on their faces," said a viewer from the United Arab Emirates who watched the programme via TV5 Thai Global Network's satellite broadcast.
"I bet there wouldn't be anywhere else on Earth that would stop promoting this kind of programme, except TV5," the overseas viewer said.
At the same time, Channel 5's Web board was also deluged with dozens of angry comments - most asking why the programme would be discontinued.
"You're wrong. Think about it again," went one comment.
But some of the posts did not support the fans' cause. "Will you die if you don't watch this show, I wonder?" one read.
To check out "This is Thailand"'s website, go to www.thisisthailand.tv
Discovery set to launch 3 lifestyle channels in India: report
MUMBAI: Discovery Networks International is set to launch a portfolio of lifestyle channels outside the US and has chosen India as the country to start with.
The India launch of the channels is scheduled within the next "90 days and counting!" worldscreen.com has reported.
Discovery Networks International president Dawn L. McCall is quoted in an interview to worldscreen.com as saying, "India attains prominence among the potential contenders because of the socio-economic developments taking place in the country." McCall pointed to the encouraging DTH scenario also as one of the reasons why the Indian management had been advocating the case for a lifestyle network in India.
Efforts made by Indiantelevision.com to get in touch with Discovery India MD Deepak Shourie for his comments on the reported development proved unsuccessful till the time of writing this report.
Discovery Networks International has identified the audience segments for its three core channels with each targeting a distinct demographic -- general adult audience, male demographic and female viewers, McCall said. The channels will be formed from existing networks Discovery Travel & Adventure, Discovery Home & Living and Discovery Health, according to the report.
A key element of the programming strategy for these channels would be localisation, McCall was quoted as saying.
McCall didn't rule out chances of the company going for more than three lifestyle networks per market.
Star and Sun may add shine to DTH fare
NEW DELHI, JUNE 24: Rupert Murdoch-promoted Star may come in handy for Prasar Bharati Corporation as it readies to launch DTH operations next month. Star Utsav recycled from Star India’s platform replete with once-chartbusting Kyunki..., Kahani... and other K soaps is already being wooed by Prasar Bharati.
Not just that, there’s some southern comfort from a key UPA ally, the DMK’s Sun TV, as well. Sun, it is learnt, is offering two channels, the Malayalam Surya and its free-to-air channel, on the DTH platform. Sun is owned by Kalanidhi Maran, brother of Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran. With these three channels and 17 others from the DD platform, Prasar Bharati hopes to launch DD-Direct Plus.
Star India’s CEO Peter Mukherjea said: ‘‘In principle, we are not against joining the platform but the commercial terms of Prasar Bharati Corporation need to be looked into.’’ Announced about a year ago, the Rs 500-crore Government-funded project was supposed to kick off in six months and meant to benefit people in remote areas. With a clutch of free channels, including Eenadu, SaB TV and Sahara, declining the corporations’ offer, the DTH project seemed a doomed venture from the start.
Prasar Bharati made a last-ditch attempt to woo channels by dropping the carriage fee, much to the annoyance of the I&B Ministry. As many as 10,000 boxes (dish antenna and set-top boxes) have arrived; a decision has to be taken to put them in homes that can receive DD programmes. Prasar Bharati Corporation will be paying Rs 30 crore to ISRO, which in turn will hand over the money to Dutch company Netherland News Skies Satellite for leasing out its transponders.
Sun targets end-July launch of Telugu music channel, Malayalam movie channel
MUMBAI: The Kalanithi Maran headed Sun Network is set to launch two more channels - one each in Telugu and Malayalam.
Sun TV vice president, programming, Hansraj W Saxena told Indiantelevision.com that Aditya, a 24-hour music channel, would be launched in Telugu while Kiran TV would open its account as the first dedicated movie channel in Malayalam. Both the channels will be launched by end-July.
These two channels and the upcoming Telugu news, cable channels would take the total number of satellite and cable channels Sun Network owns to 14. As already reported on Indiantelevision.com, Sun is coming up with its 24-hour Telugu news channel Teja News and a local cable television channel Gemini Cable Vision.
Currently, Sun Networks has its Telugu presence in Gemini TV and Teja TV. While Gemini is dedicated to soaps and entertainment, Teja TV brings its viewers movies and film-based programmes. Sun's sole player now in Malayalam is general entertainment channel Surya TV.
Please note Lyngsat is still catching up currently he is up to the 20th in terms of updates. So some items may not be not quite uptodate as yet.
Launch window for Apstar 5 (Telstar 18) with Zenit/Sea Launch on 29 June: 03:59-05:59 UTC.
Jon's Asia Weekly
“Save it for a rainy day”
Many of us across the Asia Pacific region know only to well what bad weather we get this time of the year. New Zealand has winter with lots of snow, Australia has some rain and a tiny bit of snow, the Philippines and Japan have super typhoons, here in Thailand we have our rainy season.
Over the years we tend to get used to what mother nature dishes out to us but from time to time she throws a curve ball at us, and here in Bangkok last week she throw a monster at us. In the southern part of Bangkok last Friday afternoon a mini tornado hit a small area with winds of over 100 knots and devastation of the likes I had not seen for over 20 years.
Over most of Bangkok the power went of for a few minutes, but in Bang Na it was off for over 11 hours, several commercial building and factories lost their roof’s, one small car rental firm had it car port type structure drop on 50 odd cars, and many high rise condominiums lost their satellite TV.
Lost their satellite TV? Normal in rain outage right, well that is what I thought when all the phones started to come in. Nope, not the case. They lost their satellite dishes! The phone calls went along the lines of this
Jon “Good evening”
Condo “ Hi there, you do satellites right?”
Condo “Well can you come over to our place and fix the satellite please”
Jon “Yes but look at the time, how about next Monday?”
Condo “No now, there is a bit of a problem, there is a dish sort of hanging off our roof”
Jon “Yes Sir, the dishes down there are on the roof”
Condo “You do not get it, there is a dish hanging off the roof on the XX floor, if it falls it will do some damage”
At this point I thought back a few hours when the same storm went through here, and remember thinking, I had never seen winds like this here for over 10 years, as a few of the trees around here feel over. I had even popped up to the roof here to make sure the dish farm was OK, and indeed it was just fine.
Then the same sort of calls started to flood in, we have no TV from the satellite, you do this right, come and fix ours.
So not really believing the people who called me, off we went to have a quick look, and if it was true we would simply secure the dishes and fix them in the morning.
The reason I was a bit of a doubting Thomas, was most of the dishes on the condo roofs all over the city are well and truly secured. Most bases are secured with ¾ by 3 inch concrete bolts, extra support arms and in some cases safety slings have been attached. So the chances of something happening like this is quite remote.
YIKES, when we go to the first site, they were not joking. There was an old 10 foot C Band dish, hanging over the side of the roof. Not only that, but two other dishes were assuming the “dead ant” position on the ground, and another had simply blown out. By blown out, I mean the mesh panels had blown out and only air occupied the space where the mesh used to be.
We went to the next site and the next and found the same thing again and again.
So come Saturday morning, the teams were out there dismantling the old and damaged dishes and putting new ones back in.
One site really stuck in my mind. Imaging this if you will. An eight foot mesh fixed dish, on a four foot high, six inch diameter mount pole, lying on its side, with two of the concrete bolts yanked out of the ground by the wind, but the other two bolts holding it onto the roof. The dish was lying on its side, and over the edge of the roof. Next stop 42 floors below. So three of us got onto it to try and pull it back up and then remove it. No way! It was not going to budge. Right next to this dish an other 10 footer decided to become a butterfly and the dish had clapped hands. That wind must have been incredible even at this height.
As we drove between jobs, we saw many mesh dishes blown out and it seemed to me it was more one brand than an other. That got me to thinking.
So needless to say this has been a busy week for installers all over town as they rush to fix the problems of mother nature, or as one of my team leaders told me “There is always a golden moment for someone even in the worst of times” and for the installers all over Bangkok this was one of them.
= = = = = =
All the Ku band kit here was moved back to the eastern part of the sky to look for more of the new content that is popping up between Palapa C2 (11ghz very very strong here) and Panamsat 2.
It has been quite an education to see what we can and can not see in really bad rain storms. ABC AP on Palapa C2 Asian beam on the Ku band was a nice surprise, it appears to be there most of the time.
So the updated list of Ku band satellites you can watch with a 75cm solid offset dish in Bangkok are; Eutelsat W5, LMI 1, Thaicom 2/3, NSS6, Palapa C2 (not ABC), Thaicom 1, Measat 2 and Panamsat 8.
Weather report: Even 1.8 meter solid offset Ku band dishes hate 100 knot winds
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Two great digital radio stations popped up on Thaicom 2/3 direct and live from the UK. TalkSport, wow I love it and see it popping up in sports bars across the country. Also QFM…
If you have not heard it, have a listen on;
Satellite: Thaicom 2/3
Euro 2004 is still going on and the “copyright police” are coming down hard on various providers who have had it FTA on the C band, and I have only made it worse by telling you about it via this article. So read my mind “ I am watching it FTA on ………. “ and they speak their own form of English… na just joking. A sad situation indeed.
Weather report: I love 10 foot mesh dishes when they clap hands and make like a butterfly.
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So “mission accomplished” to all the silly blighters who installed version 4.05 Emetabox and Clone software, did you not read my comments on this in last weeks article? Seems now over 60% of the region’s boxes were killed.
Weather report: close your windows when you go to work, else the rain will come in and flood your satellite receiver and this not covered by your warranty.
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Another local Thai company has come out with dual plates to make their dishes do the C & Ku bands. Strange thing is this is the company I noted above, with all the missing panels, so that will not work to well on the Ku band right?
Weather report: Mother nature when throwing a wobbly does no care about brand names!
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Next up after Euro 2004, the Cricket! I see the will be 24 one day internationals in it and the copyright police are already telling providers not to feed it FTA
Hot: talksport radio on Thaicom 2/3 C band
My hat is off to TenSport on Panamsat 7/10 C band I had the opportunity to visit with a friend of mine who has this network, and it is very very good (did I say it was great?) Shame Australia can not play hockey.
I see “Telly Track” on Panamsat 7/10 C band, also went encrypted again, rats as this was so good to watch. Come back to FTA again boys.
What is the story with the second EuroSport News feed on AS2? Never seems to have content on it. Drop me a note I would love to know.
Two weeks in a row the Kiwi’ s did the right thing in the Rugby!
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Looks like S*ca II has really made it to UCAS boxes
First we had the yanks doing “god” channels back as far as 1980, then the poms joined in, now it seems the Koreans are playing catch up and their “god” channels are popping up on the Ku band like wildfire ..
So you went out and got a ZetaCam for you know who. Now they are going VA encryption, so what are you going to do with your lifetime subscription?
So you went out and got an Irdeto 2 subscription card (lifetime of course) and now they shut off your network. How are you going to sue? I remember a discussion about this on one of the techy Australian web boards, and I suggested sub cards were not the way to go, and I was told it was in no uncertain terms. But hey, I am not the one crying in my beer
On this topic, the rumour mill tells me that the lovely lads and lass’s from Blue Kiss are doing the rounds of the shaky isles, selling their subscriptions cards for AS3S.
Big bun fights going on here in Thailand over the right to issue TV (read satellite) concessions.
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If you have news or gossip, please send it to Jon at firstname.lastname@example.org
From my Emails & ICQ
From Bill Richards
Screenshots PAS8 FTA Taiwanese mux on 4080 V
SET News, SET Taiwan, Set Metro
Gala TV Drama, Gala TV Comprehensive, Gala TV Variety
Videoland ONTV, Videoland Wmovie, Videoland Movie
Videoland Japan, Videoland Drama
From Dave Ross
ASIASAT 2 3686 Sr5632 3/4 "Tennis feed"
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 3836 V "NourSat" has started on , Fta, PIDs 2313/2314.
PAS 2 169E 12399 H "TVBS Newsnet" has left , replaced by occasional TVBS feeds.(asian beam)
Optus B3 152E 12525 V "Sun TV (India)" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1660/1620.
Agila 2 146E Manila Jockey Club has moved from 3864 H to 3724 H, Fta, SR 2612,FEC 3/4, PIDs 1160/1120.
Superbird C 144E 12658 V "J-Pop 4-12" have left .(Japan beam)
Superbird C 144E 12627 V Occasional V-Drive feeds on , SR 21096, FEC 5/6.
AsiaSat 3S 105.5E 4140 V "Occasional Zee News" feeds on, PIDs 43/44.
NSS 6 95E The DISH TV muxes are back on 11172 H and 12688 V, Conax, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, line-ups and PIDs identical to Insat 3A: 11510 H and 11670 H.
Insat 3A 93.5E 11630 H "India TV has replaced TV 5 Asie" on Conax, PIDs 167/106.
Yamal 102 90E 3576 L "Tyumenskoe Vremya, Hit FM and Kanal Melodia" have left .
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3551 H "Fashion TV India" has started on , Fta, PIDs 3105/3106.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H New PIDs for Fashion TV on : 1025/1026. Talk Sport has left this mux.(Craigs comment still there i think)
Telstar 10 76.5E 4030 V "TV Maldives" is fta again.(Euro 2004 reasons?)
PAS 10 68.5E 3716 V A test card has started on , Fta, VPID 2047.
PAS 10 68.5E 3836 V "Fame" has started on , Irdeto, PIDs 1639/1638.
PAS 10 68.5E 4178 V "A Times TV test card" has started on , Fta, SR 4000, FEC 2/3,PIDs 308/256.
PAS 10 68.5E 12687 V New SR, FEC and PIDs for Telly Track on : 2170, 2/3 and 308/256, now Fta.
Call to end betting ban
Major Australian sports bodies plan to lobby the federal government to drop a punting ban on sport screened on digital TV.
Australian Soccer Association chief executive John O'Neill said his organisation and those representing cricket and AFL believed TV betting should be extended beyond the racing industry.
"The sports bodies, I think, should unite to lobby the governments to bring in legislation that enables them to get a slice of the action," he said.
"We have flirted with this a couple of years ago but now there are moves afoot with a united (front of) ... sports bodies, cricket, AFL, the whole lot."
Rupert Murdoch's British satellite TV company BSkyB offers its digital subscribers an as-you-watch betting service accessed by remote control.
However Australians could not bet on digital television events from their armchair unless the Australian government introduced supporting legislation.
If the services were allowed, sports fans could bet on all sorts of outcomes, including the chances of cricketer Shane Warne taking three wickets in an over minutes before he started bowling.
Communications Minister Daryl Williams is expected to soon table a report on the government's review of the Interactive Gambling Act.
The report is expected to outline the government's stand on interactive TV betting and betting exchanges.
The Seven Network's chief executive David Leckie said the introduction of sports betting on interactive TV in Australia would provide a big kick along for the new digital services.
"I think interactivity is a little way off, I could be wrong," he told the Australian Broadcasting Authority's annual conference.
"I think if we had betting for instance in this country, which is not allowed ... (but) that's what's happening in the UK, that certainly would drive more interactivity.
"I still think ... people don't really want to be interrupted when they are watching a game live, but for something like betting they might."
Mr O'Neill backed Mr Leckie's view and said sports bodies should be alert to finding new revenue streams, such as interactive TV betting services.
"I think sports betting is an interesting area for all of us," he told the ABA conference.
TVNZ guilty of bully-boy tactics
From Press Release: New Zealand National Party
Thursday, 24 June 2004, 10:42 am
TVNZ is guilty of breaching its Statement of Intent with it's anti-competitive behaviour and bully-boy tactics, says National's Broadcasting spokeswoman, Georgina te Heuheu.
She is commenting on TVNZ's purchase of both ABC and 20/20, both of which are already available to viewers on TV3. The sale is the result of a bid of $1.3 million.
"TVNZ has muscled out the competition to buy something they don't need, for the sole reason of shutting out the competition, bringing virtually every global news provider comes under their auspices.
TVNZ's statement of intent says it 'will seek to be a responsible corporate citizen'. "But this is blatantly anti-competitive behaviour," says Ms te Heuheu.
"This is no longer a hands-off management issue that the Minister can ignore. He has the right to, and clearly should, step in.
"A breach of an SOE's Statement of Intent is a serious issue. New Zealanders have the right to expect good, healthy competition from their SOEs, but also a level of fairness.
"While the Minister sleeps on the job, TVNZ has become an out-of-control monster that will spend any amount of taxpayer money and do anything to squash the competition for advertising dollars," says Ms te Heuheu.
"It's time the Minister stepped in and put a stop to this anti-competitive behaviour".
TVNZ Rejects National's Claims
From Press Release: Television New Zealand
Thursday, 24 June 2004, 4:22 pm
TVNZ today strongly refuted comments from National’s Broadcasting spokeswoman Georgina te Heuheu in regards to its alleged “anti-competitive behaviour”.
“We went after the ABC and NBC deals because we are ambitious about our news and current affairs offering and we needed the extra news product for our two channels, especially short segment news items which we currently don’t have,” said Chief Executive Officer Ian Fraser.
“We are committed to bringing the best in news and current affairs from around New Zealand and the world to our viewers and to do that it is only right we consider any form of programme supply.
“We intend to put all the new product we are acquiring to good use. TVNZ does not buy programming to have it gather dust on a shelf.
“TVNZ negotiated in good faith, and on the basis of pre-existing programme acquisition relationships (not dissimilar to the basis on which TV3 added The Simpsons to its other Fox output deal product), for the ABC and NBC news deals. We succeeded on that basis.”
Mr Fraser added that if owning the rights to both ABC and NBC was anti-competitive then, logically, TV3 must have been acting anti-competitively in 2000 and 2001 when it owned the rights to both ABC and CBS.
“For the record, TVNZ screens three times as much news and current affairs as TV3 and our ABC package is significantly bigger than the ABC package TV3 had.”
(Craigs comment, perhaps rumours of a 3rd TVNZ "charter type channel "are true?)
Dicas releases free MPEG-4/H.264 video codec
Dicas, the MPEG-4 specialist software developer, today announced the release of mpegable AVC. This first version of mpegable AVC provides next generation video compression quality to all applications supporting Video for Windows like VirtualDub, FlaskMPEG and many more. Being based on the latest MPEG-standard known as MPEG-4 AVC/H.264, mpegable AVC outperforms other codecs in terms of coding efficiency.
(Craigs comment, good for those who like to do video / streaming work)
Sports News, India: Euro 2004 has Indian fans rooting for more
New Delhi, India : If cricket once ruled the roost in the Indian sub-continent, satellite TV has opened up a whole new world for sports aficionados - as the ongoing Euro 2004 is proving in no small measure.
In countless homes across India, entire families have been sitting up through the night to catch the action from Lisbon.
SMSs fly thick and fast as Zinedine Zindane bends it even better than Beckham, Wayne Rooney performs cartwheels, Zatan Ibrahimovic lives up to his promise reposed in him, and countless other playmakers weave magical spells before delirious crowds.
ESPN-STAR Sports, which is telecasting the matches live, had uncannily figured out the appeal of Euro 2004 when it decided to offer a parallel running commentary in Hindi.
"Let's face it. Football has more support at the grassroots and it's only fair we cater to the non-English speaking fans," said a channel official.
"We don't have reliable estimates but can safely guestimate that more people in India have watched Euro 2004 than those in Lisbon," the official added.
All this for a football tournament in which India does not even figure!
But then, Indian fans had gone berserk over the 2002 football World Cup too.
"Euro 2004 has turned out to be a mini World Cup. We've gotten to see the cream of European football talented without being distracted by also-rans, which some teams at the World Cup turn out to be," said hotelier Atul Seth, otherwise a self-confessed cricket freak.
"We're lucky there's not much cricketing action going on because then it would have been a problem what to watch," Seth added.
"What a tournament it has been," remarked Darshan Tandon, former director of the National Institute of Sports at Patiala, as he reeled off statistics: England losing to France 1-2, Germany being held 1-1 by Holland and then 0-0 by lowly Croatia, who also held France 2-2, Wayne Rooney bursting on the scene as England swamped Switzerland 3-0, Portugal ousting Spain and Greece waltzing into the last eight in spite of losing to Russia.
"If cricket is described as the game of uncertainties, football is even more so. When the tournament started, Beckham, Zinedine and Thiery Henry were said to be the players to watch for.
"They did fine but Euro 2004 will be remembered more for the likes of Rooney and Ibrahimovic," Tandon contended.
The craze for Euro 2004 was not the least surprising, management professor Siddharth Rout maintained.
"In terms of adrenalin high's you just can't beat football. Sure, (Sachin) Tendulkar's catch on the ropes to dismiss (Pakistani captain) Inzemam (during the one-day series in March) was heart stopping, as are some of the finishes in the matches, but in football, there is non-stop action for all of 90 minutes.
"It's a continuous roller coaster ride that you just don't want to get out of," Rout argued.
Euro 2004 was perfectly placed between the India-Pakistan cricket series in March-April and the Athens Olympics in August, maintained interior decorator Anil Verma.
"Euro 2004 has been the perfect build up to the Olympics. The cricket series was the welcome drink, Euro 2004 has been the starter and the Olympics will be the main course and the desert," Verma, who didn't let his constant travelling during the tournament come in the way of catching all the action.
"It often meant I turned up bleary eyed at morning meetings but then, so were many of my clients. Most of the time, we began by talking about football and then went on to the actual business at hand," Verma added.
That about sums up the universal appeal football enjoys in this nation of one billion.
Interesting link http://itmaze.com.au/locations/
From my Emails & ICQ
Reported by satcodx india in the chatroom
Insat 3a 4134V sr 4000
Radio and Television Afghanistan
From Siam Global
DEAR MR SUTTON,
NOTICE BELOW ON OUR LOCAL WEBOARD. MAY BE OF INTEREST TO THOSE IN SE ASIA , NE ASIA AND INDIA WHO WILL NOW HAVE TO MAKE A FURTHER PAYMENT TO KEEP THE SERVICE. THE FEE FOR 2 YEARS IS NOT UNREASONABLE IF SUBSCRIBERS CAN KEEP THEIR FREE X TV CI MODULES WHICH SERVE WELL AS ALLCAMS. S/G BKK
News on http://www.parabola.cz/r-art.php?id=1087723276
Bad news for the owners of the "Free-X TV" Cam. The Erotic channel will as of the end of July change its encryption system to "Viaccess 2" and potentially leave over 1 million viewers without a service.
"Free-X TV" claims this is neccessry due to the many problems with the Neotion encryption system. Furthermore Neotion and Free-X TV could not agree to a solution to the problem!.
Owners of the Neotion-System CAM modules presently do not need a smart-card and up to now suposedly included a life time subsciption.
From August all owners will need a "upgraded Viaccess 2" card for a fee of €39,50 which be valid for 24 months. Viewers using 13°E Hotbird to receive the channel will have "X-Dream TV" and "BackRoom" included on the card. The new card should begin be available within the next few weeks.
According to "Free-X TV" there will be no symulcrypt of "Neotion and Viaccess 2" due to technical reasons.
(Craigs comment, shouldn't affect Australian viewers)
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 12490 V "YTN" has started on , Fta, SR 4610, FEC 1/2, PIDs 3601/3604.(N.E Asia beam)
PAS 8 166E 4080 V The TAS mux on has switched from Digicipher 2 to DVB/Fta, SR 30000.Videoland WMovie Channel has started on PIDs 1040/1041.
Pili Satellite TV has left this mux.(Screenshots tomorrow)
PAS 8 166E 4140 H The test card on is now encrypted.
Optus B3 152E Occasional feeds on 12442 H and 12452 H, SR 6670.
NSS 6 95E 12729 V "Sexz TV" has left .
ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" has left , replaced by a test card.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3840 V "The Sadhna Super Channel" tests have left .
Telstar 10 76.5E 4030 V "TV Maldives" is now encrypted.(Euro2004 perhaps?)
PAS 10 68.5E 4064 H "Occasional BBC feeds" on PIDs 1260/1220.
PAS 10 68.5E Telly Track on 4099 V and 12687 V is now encrypted.
Aussie Euro fans 'punished'
THE Government has let soccer fans down by denying them free-to-air television coverage of the Euro 2004 tournament, the Greens said today.
The biggest international soccer event of the year, Euro 2004, is only available to Australian viewers through pay-TV provider, Foxtel.
Greens MP Michael Organ today criticised the government for failing to secure the event's rights for free-to air television.
"Pay-TV discriminates against those that cannot afford it and the Government should be mindful of that when it chooses to ignore some of the biggest sporting events in the world," Mr Organ said.
Soccer is now one of Australia's biggest sports, with 1.2 million participants, Mr Organ said, and fans should have the chace to watch it when it is played at the highest level.
He said it is "bizarre" that Euro 2004 and the World Cup soccer are not available on free-to-air TV.
"In the event that the Australian team makes the World Cup finals in 2006 there is a real possibility that the Australian public will not be able to see them play," he said.
"Win or lose, that's a disgrace."
iPSTAR may go beyond Asia
Upcoming broadband-Internet satellite iPSTAR may go beyond its Asia-Pacific footprint and be used to tap the European and US markets.
Avudh Ploysongsang, vice president of Shin Satellite Plc, the owner of iPSTAR, said the company was exploring a new business opportunity in the two markets.
Currently, iPSTAR satellite’s “footprint” covers the broadband-Internet market across the Asia-Pacific.
Under the plan, iPSTAR will team with satellite operators in Europe and the US to market iPSTAR terminals to customers in the two regions to receive the satellite-based broadband-Internet service, which would be beamed by local satellite operators.
“Since we don’t have the coverage there, we’ll have the satellite operators in the regions to beam the service to our iPSTAR terminals,” Avudh said.
He said that the service in Europe and US would use the brand name iPSTAR.
The company had already approached local satellite operators but discussions were in the early stage, he said.
ShinSat plans to launch iPSTAR into orbit next quarter or late this year. At the moment its Thaicom 3 satellite provides broadband-Internet service to users of iPSTAR terminals.
ShinSat, Asia’s second-largest satellite operator, was founded by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s family.
It started the iPSTAR project in 1997 at a cost of US$350 million (Bt14.3 billion) with the hope that it would become the flagship of Shin’s business empire.
ShinSat executives have previously said that if iPSTAR was successful, the company would create an iPSTAR 2 satellite to further tap the market and replace the Thaicom 1 satellite, which is due to expire in 2008.
Sea Launch to blast off Monday
Long Beach-based Sea Launch has scheduled a launch for Monday to place into orbit a Loral Telstar 18 communications satellite.
Sea Launch's Odyssey launch platform and a command ship departed Long Beach last week for the equator, where the satellite will be lifted into space on a Zenit-3SL rocket.
The launch is scheduled during a two-hour window, starting at 8:59 p.m. Monday.
The satellite will host cable programming, direct-to-home broadcasting, Internet, and two-way services within Asia.
Gilat Selected To Deploy Rural Telephony Network In Papua
Telikom Papua New Guinea (PNG) and Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd. today announced that Gilat has been selected by Telikom PNG to provide a hub and 500 DialAw@y IP VSATs for rural telephony services across the island country. The network is expected to expand to 2,000 sites and will provide support for IP, education and health applications.
Dr. Florian Gubon, Chairman of the Board of Telikom PNG said, "A satellite-based network was ideal in our situation due to the lack of existing infrastructure. There is huge demand for our services and we are very pleased with the development of the rural communities in the wake of this project, which is only the first stage. We look forward to benefiting from Gilat's experience as we move ahead with this important project."
Oded Sheshinski, Managing Director of Gilat Australia, said, "We are proud to have been selected in this tender. We look forward to establishing a long-term relationship with Telikom PNG in which Gilat experience worldwide will contribute to turn this project into a profitable service across Papua New Guinea."
Gilat Satcom Signs Contract With Intersputnik To Lease Capacity On LMI-1 Telcom Satellite
The Intersputnik International Organization of Space Communications will lease four transponders of the LMI-1 satellite (75o East) to the Israeli telecommunications operator Gilat Satcom Ltd. The contract was signed as Intersputnik’s delegation was visiting Israel.
SingTel deploys two-way satellite
Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) is pointing its satellite business at new opportunities such as interactive distance learning and digital cinema with the rollout of a two-way satellite broadband system.
Singapore Telecommunications (SingTel) is pointing its satellite business at new opportunities such as interactive distance learning and digital cinema with the rollout of a two-way satellite broadband system.
Under an agreement announced at CommunicAsia last week, Nera Telecommunications will provide SingTel with a DVB-RCS (Digital Video Broadcasting-Return Channel via Satellite) system comprising Nera SatLink hub and terminals.
Tan Hong Pew (left), Nera's chief operating officer of Nera Telecommunications, described DVB-RCS as a "new generation VSAT (very small aperture terminal)". Based on open protocols, it allows equipment manufacturers to develop products around it, unlike traditional VSAT technology which was proprietary, he said. DVB-RCS rides on the existing DVB-S infrastructure and, being IP-centric, can support formats such as Mpeg 4 and video which can be encapsulated in packets.
In 2001, SingTel launched its IP broadband via satellite or DVB-S one-way service, offering bandwidth on demand, media content distribution, live streaming and data multicasting.
"The next major application we plan to roll out is interactive distance learning, rural communications and digital cinema in the region," said Tay Chek Khoon (right), SingTel's vice president of Regional Satellite Business.
"The scope of opportunities provided by the Nera SatLink will be vast for SingTel, and it is an exciting prospect. There is a huge market for interactive distance learning in the region."
The DVB-RCS hub, together with SingTel's ST-1 satellite system, supports data transmission of up to 2Mbps on the return channel. The system is expected to be deployed by August.
While the potential applications supported by DVB-RCS run the gamut from interactive television through corporate intranets and extranets, multicasting to eprocurement, SingTel has decided to focus on distance learning, where it can draw on the experience of subsidiary Optus, which has had a successful RCS implementation in Australia.
Through the DVB-RCS hub, Singapore companies can offer distance learning to markets in other parts of the world, said Tay.
Richard Lau, director of Regional Satellite Business Development with SingTel, said it is a very promising market. He quoted statistics from the International Data Corporation, which predicted that the e-learning market in the Asia Pacific would grow to US$233 million ($403 million) by 2005, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 25 per cent.
In China alone, the market is expected to reach US$60 million. Singapore, in comparison, is expected to have a market of US$28 million by 2005, with an CAGR of 18 per cent.
SingTel plans to target interactive distance learning services at remote schools and institutions of learning in the region.
"DVB-RCS two-way systems will propel us to the next stage in the growth of the satellite business," said Lau.
With DVB-RCS, the network is shared, which means that many users can come on board.
Service levels can be configured, and equipment cost is also lower compared with DVB-S. Lau estimates that an existing setup comprising the DVB-S receiver, protocol converter and modem would cost about US$4,100, while DVB-RCS could bring the cost down to US$1,500 for one integrated indoor unit.
According to Northern Sky Research, the market for DVB one-way systems numbered 14,900 units in 2002 and is expected to grow to 45,400 by 2007. In contrast, the market size for two-way systems numbered 35,500 units in 2002 and is expected to grow to 254,000 by 2007.
Boeing's in-flight broadband launches in Asia
In-flight broadband Internet access was launched in Asia on Tuesday with the take-off of Lufthansa flight 715 from Tokyo to Munich.
The service is based on The Boeing Co.'s Connexion by Boeing service and its launch in Asia follows Lufthansa AG's rollout on its flight between Munich and Los Angeles in May. The service uses a wireless LAN on board the aircraft and connects through a satellite link to offer passengers a shared Internet connection with downstream capacity of 5M bps (bits per second) and upstream capacity of 1M bps.
Launch of the service was announced at a Tokyo news conference where Lufthansa and Boeing demonstrated the connectivity by holding a live video conference with Lufthansa representatives on the aircraft.
"What is normal for us on the ground is becoming normal for us in the air," said Bernhardt Seiter, director of Lufthansa's Flynet service.
Lufthansa will offer the service every day on its flights 714 and 715 each way between Munich and Tokyo. Users have a choice of two payment schemes: US$29.95 for the entire flight or US$9.95 for 30 minutes of access and then a per-minute fee of US$0.25.
Passengers can also get free access to a Lufthansa portal called Flynet. The service consists of more than 1,000 pages of news and information, travel guides, Lufthansa-related content and shopping. Some parts of the portal, such as the news, are updated about once per hour during the flight.
At present passengers need an access device such as notebook PC or PDA (personal digital assistant) to access the content, but Lufthansa is considering adding it to the aircraft's entertainment system beginning in 2005 or 2006, Seiter said.
Later this year the airline plans to expand the service to other flights serving Asia, including flights between Germany and Osaka, Japan, and China as well as on other routes to India, the Middle East and Canada.
A number of other airlines are planning to begin offering the service this year. Three have signed agreements with Boeing: SAS AB's Scandinavian Airline Systems and Japan's All Nippon Airways and Japan Airlines System. Another four have signed preliminary agreements: British Airways, Korean Air, Singapore Airlines and Taiwan's China Airlines. Qantas has not signed so far.
The airlines are hoping the service will provide them with a competitive advantage over rivals and also say the system can help them cut their own charges by improving the company's own aircraft-to-ground communications. For example, aircraft maintenance information can be sent to ground crews ahead of time, reducing turnaround time for repairs.
Lufthansa said passenger take-up of the service is currently on target. The first route on which Lufthansa offered the service, the LH425/453 flights between Munich and Los Angeles, is seeing usage levels of about 10 to 20 passengers per flight, which is in line with the airline's expectations at this point, Seiter said.
Boeing and India's premier space agency to make satellites
The US government has approved a licence authorising Boeing Co. to enter into talks with India's premier space agency for jointly developing and marketing communication satellites, an official said Tuesday.
Kenneth Juster, US Under Secretary of Commerce, told Indian and US delegates at a space conference in this southern Indian city of Bangalore that clearance was given last week by his government.
"Our government approved just before the conference a licence authorising Boeing Satellite Systems to engage in discussions ... with the Indian Space Research Organisation on the division of responsibilities of possible joint cooperation in developing and marketing communication satellites," he said.
The five-day conference which will end Friday is exploring possibilites of space cooperation between the United States and India.
More than 500 Indian and foreign delegates are attending the meeting, among them 150 US officials and industry representatives.
Juster said there was a great opportunity ahead for collaboration between the two nations in peaceful use of space.
"Earlier this year our leaders agreed to a strategic framework to expand cooperation in several key areas, including high-technology trade, civilian space programmes and civilian nuclear activities," he said.
"They also agreed to enhance our dialogue on missile defence. The proposed cooperation known as the Next Steps strategic partnership will progess through a series of steps that will build on each other," Juster said.
He hoped the new left-leaning Indian government would embrace the partnership and move forward.
"The US recognises that India is not a party to certain multilateral non-proliferation regimes. We need to advance cooperation in high-tech trade, civilian space activities in ways that do not undermine the general international framework on non-proliferation," Juster said.
In Washington on Monday, the US government said it wants to strengthen an agreement with India that allows sharing of satellite data and other environmental research.
Potential for expansion of the "Memorandum of Understanding for Science Cooperation in the Areas of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences" was being discussed at the talks in Bangalore, it said.
The agreement could boost an Earth observation program and improve weather and climate forecasting in India, it added.
The memorandum, first signed in 1997 and extended in 2002 for five more years, provides for the near-real-time exchange of US and Indian geostationary and other satellite data under a cooperation programme in the Earth and atmospheric sciences.
The Bangalore conference is a follow-up to a landmark meeting between former Indian prime minister Atal Behari Vajpayee and President Bush in November 2001.
Livechat tonight 9pm Nz and 8.30pm Syd time onwards.
Turn down your speakers and then go here for CCTV5 Live football feed online. e.g Euro 2004
http://tv.28168.com/ Warning you made need a Chinese font installed in your browser.
Wimbledon Tennis is on Starsports. But has anyone seen an actual feed of it?
From my Emails & ICQ
From Dharmesh Bamrolia
Please try to catch Yamal (90E) to see Euro 2004 on their
various Telekanal Rossiya channels.
Fashion Tv india On 3551H S/R 13333 On Thaicom 2/3 78.5 E
From the Dish
Launch date for Apstar 5, 138E (Telstar 18) with Zenit/Sea Launch: 28 June.
PAS 2 169E 12673 V "GWN - Golden West Network" has left .
Telkom 1 108E 3580 H "ABC Asia Pacific" has started on , Irdeto, PIDs 103/529.A1 Asia has left this mux.
Express AM 11 96.5E 3475 L Test carriers on .
NSS 6 95E The DISH TV muxes have left 11172 H and 12688 V again.
Insat 3A 93.5E 11550 H "Sky Bangla has replaced DD News" on , Conax, PIDs 169/110.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "PTS" has left .
Insat 2E 83E 3485 V "ETV Uttar Pradesh, ETV Madhya Pradesh, ETV Rajasthan and ETV Bihar" are now encrypted.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3626 V "Nepal 1, Sadhana TV, Punjab Today, Mh 1" and the test card have left ,moved to 3840 V.
TV policy ready for Cabinet approval
THE policy framework on the legislation of the television industry should be ready for Cabinet's approval by next month, Information Minister Simione Kaitani said yesterday.
At least three international companies from China, Canada and Hawaii have applied for a licence to operate locally.
Mr Kaitani said the legislation would focus on the opening up of the television market.
He said that despite the court ruling in 2001 that granted exclusive rights to one television company, there was no legislation in place to allow other players to come in.
As a result the Hawaiian company which was granted a licence in 2001, could not begin its operations. Mr Kaitani denied that a condition in the legislation was for the overseas companies to purchase programmes from Fiji TV.
"But there are requirements on local content," he said last night. "However, I cannot tell you right now what the requirements are because all my files are in the office."
Chinese company Fu Shun Television, which intents to set up in Labasa, has flown in its engineers to set up operations.
"In my view, the company's development in Labasa is in support of the government's look north policy," said Mr Kaitani.
He admitted that he had powers to grant licences but Mr Kaitani said he would rather wait for the legislation. The Fu Shun Television with the Fiji Chinese Community hosted the minister, the media and prominent residents of Labasa to a dinner in Suva on Sunday to welcome the engineers.
"The Chinese Government has contributed a lot to Fiji, the provision of loans for projects in the information technology sector including the $42million loan for the construction of the Pacific Village," he said.
Labasa Lord Mayor Paul Jaduram urged the Government to approve Fu Shun's application for a licence
THAILAND: PM's cousin quits company affiliated to RNT News
Firm bosses defend deal with Channel 11
A cousin of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra has resigned from a company affiliated to RNT News Co, which is at the centre of the controversy over state-run Channel 11 television station's distribution of its frequency to two private firms.
Sompob Shinawatra tendered his resignation as managing direcrtor of 1081900 Audiotext Company at a press conference yesterday.
The company, an affiliate of RNT News, was set up to provide phone payment and audio text services. Mr Sompob was hired as its managing director only two months ago, said RNT News chairman Yongyut Thepchamnong.
Pol Gen Yongyut held the press conference to defend RNT News' contract to operate Channel 11/1. He insisted his company did not employ Mr Sompob so that it could capitalise on his family name.
Mr Sompob's father, Surapan, is Mr Thaksin's uncle.
Pol Gen Yongyut said he clinched the deal to run Channel 11/1, a 24-hour news station, via Channels 19 and 77 of United Broadcasting Corporation (UBC), a pay TV operator, "in a fair and transparent manner". He did not have the slightest intention to secure his firm's foothold in the broadcast business through exploitation of Mr Sompob's presence, said Pol Gen Yongyut.
"We stand by our word that we are playing by the rules. Everything we do is accountable," he said.
His words, however, failed to convince critics who felt Mr Sompob's presence in an affiliate of RNT News could not be dismissed entirely as professional in nature.
They charged that RNT News, which began operating early this year, had never supplied even a single news story to the Public Relations Department (PRD), which runs Channel 11, despite the contractual requirement for the firm to supply Channel 11 with 60 news items a month.
Pol Col Ruamnakhon Thubthimthongchai, a top executive of RNT News, said Mr Sompob did not own even one share throughout the four years of the company's expansion. He added Mr Sompob's employment did not constitute a conflict of interest.
From now on, he said, RNT News and its affiliated companies would not recruit anyone sharing the family name of a politician.
Pol Col Ruamnakhon insisted that the PRD did not have to call an open bid to pick RNT News to manage Channel 11/1 because his firm and the PRD agreed to co-produce programmes.
Deputy Prime Minister Visanu Krue-ngarm, who oversees the PRD, said he would check if Channel 11 had breached the frequency management law or the constitution by authorising private firms to set up Channels 11/1 and 11/2, broadcast via cable and satellite television systems and also run commercials.
Advertisements on Channel 11 are prohibited.
DTH fails to take off, pvt players stay away
Prasar Bharati offers carriage fee waiver bait, but private channels won’t bite
NEW DELHI, JUNE 21: The poor man’s DTH direct to home TV sponsored by the Government of India at a price not likely to pinch is not going anywhere. Announced last year with much fanfare, the Rs 500 crore-project was supposed to kick off in six month’s time of its announcement in June last year.
While that is unlikely, private channels are not inclined to join the Government’s DTH platform. The Government had worked out a formula whereby Doordarshan would have 17 channels (including IGNOU’s channels) and private satellite channels would chip in with 13 channels.
Tentatively dubbed DD-Direct Plus, the project was started to counter criticism against another abortive plan of the Government the Conditional Access System. Clutching at straws, the Prasar Bharati Corporation is even willing to drop the carriage fee nearly Rs 13 crore for other channels in a desperate bid to attract them, much to the annoyance of its parent, the Information and Broadcasting Ministry. Now, with the waiver, DD was hoping that some private channels would join.
DTH was supposed to offer its channels for free with the subscriber paying only for a dish antenna to be made available for Rs 4,000. Unlike private players with more content on their platform, and with a price tag of Rs 6,000, in addition to the monthly bill of Rs 500, DTH was meant to double up as a fair price shop, reaching subscribers who don’t have access to cable. The idea was to offer a fare to those people who were denied television on account of inhabiting hilly terrains.
Now, what DD has to offer is Eklavya and Vyasa from IGNOU, a clutch of DD channels and all religious free-to-air channels on its DTH platform.
While 10,000 boxes (dish antenna in addition to set-top boxes) have arrived, a decision has yet to be taken to put them in homes that can receive DD programmes. Don’t be surprised if the boxes don’t reach the North-East the primary audience.
Quite a few news items today. Also a new Channel in the WMI mux on Pas 2 a new Arabic channel.
Lyngsat has returned!
From my Email & ICQ
A new Free To Air channel has started on the PAS 2 World Media International (3836 V 13330 Fec 3/4) Tele Lumiere a Lebanese christian maronite channel http://www.noursat.com/ . Although it may not last free to air as World Media may encrypt it in the future.
From Mark Fahey
Chinese Soccer Feed AS3
This feed channel is labelled "Beijing"
4046 Vert Sr 4420 Fec ?
From Steve Hume
3898H SR 2000 FEC 3/4
VPID 308 APID1 256 APID2 257 PCR PID 8190
PAL test bars currently showing. Has been there all day.
From David Ross
B1 Horz 12.380 6510 5/6 Feed from Geelong for Fox Footy
I found a new channel at 57 degrees E...NSS 703..
Ctv news.....3925r 3000..very strong into WA on my 3.7m kti..
From Siam Global (Thailand)
WE WILL NOT BE ABLE TO SEE THIS AS 169 EAST IS THE HORIZON LIMIT FOR
THAILAND BUT ALREADY HAVE NOTICED ONE SIGN OF AN IMPENDING SERVICE.
BLOOMBERG TV HAS STARTED FOR THE VERY FIRST TIME GIVING THE EXCHANGE RATE FOR THE FIJI DOLLAR...A SURE SIGN THEY WILL FEATURE ON ANY BOUQUET FOR FIJI !
From the Dish
Welcome back after the update break 10-19 June. The updates will be
running late this week to catch up with all the update mails received
during the update break. See http://www.lyngsat.com/status.html for
PAS 2 169E 4090 V "Living Asia Channel" has started on , Fta, PIDs 518/646.
PAS 8 166E "Phoenix Chinese, Leonardo, CTI TV International, Azio TV and Hunan TV" have left TARBS World TV, replaced by test cards.
PAS 8 166E 3880 V "ABS-CBN Channel 2-3" are now encrypted.
PAS 8 166E 12405 H "TV Masala" is back on , Fta, SR 2207, FEC 3/4, PIDs 4194/4195.
Agila 2 146E
Updates in Dream Satellite TV:
Comelec Channel has started on 12301 H, Fta, PIDs 160/80.
UNTV and 4UTV in are now in clear.
AsiaSat 4 122E 12580 H "ERA News" has left , replaced by occasional ERA feeds.
NSS 6 95E 12647 V "Leonardo" has left , repacled by a test card.
NSS 6 95E 11172 H A DISH TV mux has started on , Conax, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, Indian beam, identical to Insat 3A: 11670 H.
NSS 6 95E Two DISH TV muxes have started on 12534 V and 12595 V, Conax, SR 40700,FEC 2/3, Indian beam. For line-up, see the new DISH TV chart for NSS 6.
NSS 6 95E A DISH TV mux has started on 12688 V, Conax, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, Indian beam, identical to Insat 3A: 11510 H.
NSS 6 95E 11679 V Al-Islah TV has left .
Yamal 201 90E 3571 L Kolyma + has left .
Govt picks two ISPs for rural areas
Two Internet Service Providers (ISPs) were recently approved to be the providers for the Australian Government's Higher Bandwidth Incentive Scheme (HiBIS).
Broadcasting Engineering Services (BES), trading as e-wire, and the Regional Broadband Services (RBBS) were the two ISPs picked for the broadband rollout.
BES is a Western Australian company offering cable broadband services to greenfields land developments in the regions around Perth. Roll out of the services to areas in the south-west will start from July 2004.
BES initially installed Hybrid Fibre Coax cables (HFC) in greenfield land development sites for the reticulation of free-to-air television services. The Department of Communications, Information Technology and the Arts said this same network will be used to deliver a "broader range of services."
RBBS, on the other hand, is a Canberra-based start-up company that delivers high speed, two-way, broadband Internet services nationally through a Direct to Home (DTH) Satellite Service to people living in regional, rural and remote Australia.
The RBBS will supply services through a ViaSat Surfbeam two-way satellite terminal modem and provide a one metre satellite dish and associated receiver/transmitter equipment.
The AU$107.8 million HiBIS program is the government's answer to the Regional Telecommunications Inquiry in improving access and broadband services in regional and rural areas.
Asian satellite ops set to boost Arianespace profit
Satellite launcher Arianespace sees its future in the Asia-Pacific, with more companies and countries beginning to develop a nascent satellite industry.
In fact, the Asia-Pacific is expected to contribute at least 40% to Arianespace's total revenue. The United States is expected to contribute 30%, and the balance from Europe and other regions, according to chief executive officer Jean-Yves Le Gall.
“As a region, Asia is seen as the most dynamic this year when it comes to satellite commissioning,” Le Gall told Malaysian journalists in Singapore on the sidelines of the CommunicAsia Conference and Expo.
Last year, the company posted net sales of 559 million euros, and net profit of 9.2 million euros. This year, it expected results to be boosted significantly by new business from Asia, he said.
Le Gall, who had also spent a lot of time in Asia, said the company had signed four contracts this year, two each in Japan and Australia.
“We expect to sign another four, which will account for 50% of the satellites to be launched this year,” he said.
Despite a good run in the rest of Asia, Arianespace missed out on one of its big clients, Measat, which had opted for a Russian launcher to send its massive Measat 3 into orbit at the end of the year.
“It was bad luck that we did not get it,” Le Gall said, adding that Ariannespace would be be working closely with the company for future launches. Arianespace was the launcher for Measat 1 and 2.
He said Arianespace would not be deterred by the loss, and was looking forward to significant growth in the industry.
Various factors account for this optimism, including investors’ willingness to invest in satellites to improve communications.
Asia does not have the legacy left behind by the satellite boom in Europe and North America, which has also attracted some “wild” ideas not backed by profit.
Some investors felt they could reap profit by having a satellite without having a proper business plan.
When the expected profits did not materialise, the satellites even came crashing down literally, as witnessed in the late 1990s when companies, including Iridium, made spectacular exits after spending billions of dollars on satellites.
Because of this, some investors shied away, which resulted in a slowdown in the whole industry.
The situation, however, did not happen in the Asian region, Le Gall said. Most satellites sent to orbit in Asia were backed by solid business plans.
“What impressed me about Asia is that the market is fuelled not by engineers who came up with technology, but by a real demand for product and services,” he said, pointing to such products as satellite TV.
Asian economic recovery would also drive demand for satellite service, given the region's vast geographical areas now not connected though landlines.
Satellite would be a better option to kick start communications in the region.
With the industry now ripe for tremendous growth in Asia, Le Gall said, the company record could help it succeed in the region.
“We have past and present customers who are satisfied with us, and a history of launching a lot of spacecraft,” he said, adding that the company's loyalty to its clients during difficult periods also helped build relationships with them.
Arianespace launched 133 telecommunication satellites, or 58% of the 230 satellites in orbit today.
Le Gall said when dealing with its customers, the company did not just focus on offering its products, particularly in launching satellites into orbit, but would also provide a wide range of related services, such as financing This helped it to offer the most cost-effective solution.
Arianespace offered a complete package, which included insurance, he added.
He said the company also formed an alliance with Boeing, and this would provide the best solution for customers.
Fiji TV goes it alone
FIJI One Television has already started to source its own television programmes from distributors since it stopped sourcing television programmes from Television New Zealand Satellite Services.
According to the latter's Managing Director, Sam Fairhalf, Fiji Television stopped buying programmes since August last year.
Fiji TV has installed a satellite dish outside its main office opposite Government Buildings this year.
But Television New Zealand (TVNZ) announced that later this year it subsidiary company, TVNZ Satellite Services, would quit the global occasional use in the satellite delivery industry.
Fiji One Head of Programmes Richard Broadbridge said they were capable of sourcing their own programmes directly from the companies who make the programmes.
Mr Broadbridge said as a result of the development they were now providing programs for television viewers in Samoa, Niue, Tonga, Cook Islands and Samoa. The above countries now have to source their programmes through Fiji television.
Mr Broadbridge said they would be one extra personnel to help them meet these demands. They have also formed a Fiji Television Pacific service to deal with programs they sell to Pacific island countries.
TVNZ Satellite Services has provided satellite carriage services to the international broadcast community in Asia, Africa and the Pacific for over a decade.
TVNZ issued a release in April stating that it would exit the industry after ensuring that existing obligations to its customers are met. It is committed for the remainder of this year.
(Craigs comment, Fiji DTH service starts soon KU band via Nss5)
Astro posts RM19m net profit in 1Q
Satellite TV provider Astro All Asia Networks Plc posted a net profit of RM19.72 million for its first quarter ended March 30, compared with a net loss of RM13.54 million a year ago.
In a statement on June 18, it said the profit was mainly driven by higher subscription revenue from the multi channel television (MC-TV) segment.
Revenue rose 25% to RM391.07 million from RM310.41 million a year ago. Earnings per share stood at 1.03 sen.
The MC-TV segment achieved total revenue of RM351 million, which was RM69.5 million or 24.7% higher than the same period last year, mainly contributed by higher subscription and advertising revenue.
Residential subscriber net additions were 56,000 in the current quarter, an increase of 7,000 or 14.3% compared to 49,000 a year ago. The increase was mainly due to more aggressive marketing campaign and lower set-top box prices in the current quarter.
Astro’s radio and Celestial segments also saw improved financial performances. The radio segment revenue of RM27.30 million was 30% higher than RM21 million achieved a year ago.
DST Officer Fined $1,600 For Importing Satellite Receiver
Bandar Seri Begawan - A DST communications officer was yesterday fined $1,600 or in default four weeks imprisonment by the Bandar Magistrate's Court for an undeclared satellite receiver unit.
The defendant, Kamal Ringgit, 45, failed to declare a satellite receiver unit that he bought from Surabaya. He did not also have a valid license to import the broadcasting apparatus.
He could be jailed for 12 months and fined $40,000 for failure to make the declaration and imprisonment for a term not exceeding three years and a fine not exceeding $40,000 or both for not having a valid license to import the said apparatus.
Kamal, who works at the DST Support Services Unit, pleaded guilty to the charges of importing and failing to declare one unit of Unisat DV3 Digital Satellite Receiver to the Customs officers at the inspection area of the Brunei International Airport hall, which is an offence under section 124 (1)(e) of the Customs Act (Cap 36).
He also admitted to importing the digital satellite without a valid license, under section 23 of the Broadcasting Act (Cap 180). -- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin
First satellite spacecraft retires with full honors
After more than five years of orbiting high above the earth, the time has come to say goodbye to Taiwan's first satellite, as ROCSAT-1 finally exhausted its power supply on Thursday.
Officials from the National Space Program Office announced it was "mission accomplished" for the first Taiwan-owned and operated satellite in a news briefing yesterday, and praised the spacecraft's successful performance and scientific achievement.
"We are very proud of the historic missions carried out by ROCSAT-1. It has served our country with distinction, and its many accomplishments have exceeded our expectations," said Shieh Ching-jyh , deputy minister of the National Science Council.
Scientists are proud of this first satellite because it opened up new opportunities for Taiwan to officially enter the space age, and heralds the nation's aspiration to join the high-tech aeronautic science club.
ROCSAT-1 was launched from the American air force base at Florida's Cape Canaveral on January 27, 1999 and has been encircling the globe at an orbit 600 kilometers above the earth. It was designed and developed jointly between local scientists, NSPO technical teams, and the TRW consortium in the U.S.
According to a NSPO press release, the original mission for the spacecraft was set for two years, with the satellite's life-span designed to last four years. But ROCSAT-1 was in operation for nearly five-and-a-half years, clocking a total of 29,335 orbit tracks around the earth.
Officials said ROCSAT-1 had carried out a total of more than 5,000 earth surface photographs with its 'Ocean Color Imager,' and had conducted scientific research on the ionosphere and other upper atmosphere phenomena that resulted in more than 200 paper publications in technical journals, along with two granted patents.
Shieh said the ground crew had to bid a fond farewell to the spacecraft on Thursday as its aging sensors had stopped responding to command signals due to equipment run-down from normal wear and tear, damage from solar radiation and cosmic rays.
"We discovered ROCSAT-1 had switched to 'safe mode' due to abnormal conditions with its aging 'Sun Sensor' on the afternoon of June 16. The satellite was then unable to be controlled and the solar panels could not be properly deployed at the correct angle towards the sun," as Shieh said.
"Therefore the battery could not charge up effectively and the operating power was exhausted. ... We were unable to re-establish communications with the satellite after a whole day of trying and finally had to terminate its mission," he added.
NSPO officials said the satellite is now in a sort of "shut-down" mode and will gradually be tugged toward the earth by gravitational pull, eventually burning up during re-entry into the atmosphere. Official estimates of when the final "fiery cremation" will occur range from a few years to several decades.
TV stations aiming for niche audiences
TV stations are sloughing off their mass-media mantle to become boutique broadcasters, each aiming to develop its own audience niche.
While Modernine TV offers a mix of news and variety programmes, iTV tries to present itself as a news and entertainment outlet.
Although heavy on mainstream programming, Channels 3 and 7 also have their specialties. Thai TV 3 is strong on drama series from Hong Kong and Taiwan. Bangkok Broadcasting and Television’s Channel 7 is quite successful in attracting the hearts of mass audiences with its Thai soap operas.
State-owned Channels 5 and 11 are the two latest players to make a dramatic change, which will transform the TV landscape.
They are seeking to stand on their own commercially, and that will lead to tougher competition in the cash-cow TV industry.
Royal Thai Army Radio and Television is reshuffling its Channel 5 management by setting up a sales and marketing arm, RTA Entertainment Plc, to run the station more professionally. The Army is already looking at floating RTA Entertainment to the public.
The Public Relations Department, which operates Channel 11, is taking a different tack, while aiming for the same privatisation, by launching satellite channels. It has brought in private players to operate its satellite channels on a revenue-sharing basis, by giving two-year contracts to Brave Heart International Co Ltd, owned by the Chamikorn family, and Thaiday.com Co Ltd, the media arm of the Manager Group.
Brave Heart is to focus on producing content to promote tourism and culture, said Dussadee Sinchermsiri, PRD deputy director-general. Thaiday.com is to work with RNT News Co Ltd to strengthen news content on Channel 11 and one of its satellite channels.
“We’re open to talks with any private firm that wants to operate and supply content to our satellite TV channels. However, their main objectives must be to promote and support government policy and to develop the country, not to make a profit,” Dussadee said.
The TV market seems to be evolving as in Japan, which has six or seven satellite channels, or in Vietnam, which has four or five satellite channels.
Narong Chaovarad, deputy managing director of Media of Medias Plc, said the local TV scene was entering a new era of segmentation following the advent of satellite TV.
“With the increase in TV channels, including satellite channels, viewers will have more programmes to choose from and can watch the ones they like,” he said.
In most developed countries, free TV makes up only 30 per cent of total TV channels available, he said. Cable and satellite TV are dominant because they can offer more targeted programmes to serve different requirements of viewers.
Media of Medias has no policy of investing in this “hardware” business, which is quite costly, he said.
“We will stick to our competency in producing TV content and supplying shows to TV stations.”
The changes in the stations should be based on fair competition and benefits to viewers, he added.
Witawat Jayapani, CEO of Creative Juice\G1, a major advertising agency, said the regulatory environment was hobbling progress in developing the local TV industry.
“I don’t think there will be any big change in the local TV industry [for three years],” Witawat said.
Both satellite and cable TV are still struggling under the strict control of the government, he said. Cable TV operators cannot raise the rates they charge to subscribers because any change needs to be approved by the authorities, so the operators cannot afford to import quality foreign programmes.
“The tough competition will be among existing free TV players. They must update their TV-programme format and rearrange their programme schedules to attract viewers, as Channel 9 and iTV successfully did,” Witawat said.
“I myself however haven’t see any new programme schedule presented by Channel 5. Channel 5 is now in the worst shape, and it has to make some improvement following Channel 9, iTV and Channel 11, which have already made theirs,” he said.
Satellite TV, which generally uses English, will face a challenge in attracting local audiences.
“Only 12 per cent of Thais understand English,” Witawat said.
Malee Boonsiripan, an associate professor in Thammasat University’s Faculty of Journalism and Mass Communications, said most local TV operators would concentrate on getting good ratings, which would bring handsome returns to their shareholders, while ignoring other stakeholders.
Programmes will be better in terms of technology and presentation but worse in terms of subject matter that truly benefits society at large, he said.
“While the private sector is quite excited about the revolution in the local TV industry, how about the Thai people, who own this national resource of broadcasting frequencies? What do they stand to get out of it?”
More TV channels coming your way
Rajat Sharma knows it will be a tough battle to be first with the news. India TV, the channel recently launched by the celebrity anchor turned broadcasting czar, is fighting for its scoops with nine mainstream news channels already on air.
Sharma's India TV with anchorpersons like politician Maneka Gandhi and journalist Tarun Tejpal must pull out all stops to stay in the game.
But Sharma doesn't seem unduly fazed by the competition. If industry rumours are right, he's contemplating an entertainment channel to compete with giants like Star Plus and Sony.
Sharma isn't the only who's hoping to start a new surfing craze on the small screen. Indian viewers will soon be spoilt for choice because everyone who is anyone is starting new channels.
Firstly, there are existing giants like Subhash Chandra's Zee and Star India. Then, there are powerful newcomers like Times Television which is planning a slew of new channels.
Look at the line-up. Times Television will go on air with what it calls a 'non-fiction premium lifestyle and entertainment' channel which will be called Zoom.
That will be followed by a spiritual channel to be launched by the year end. And Star which has already launched Star Utsav last month, is also looking at a premium entertainment channel called Star One to be launched in October this year.
Already Zee has been putting its plans into action. Its newer offerings include a 24-hour comedy channel, Smile TV, and a spiritual channel, Jagran, both of which were launched late last year. Zee is now also toying with the idea of launching a children's channel and a women-oriented channel.
Move to the kiddies section and the action is moving even more swiftly. United Television (UTV) is launching a children's channel Hungama TV in two languages and international giant Walt Disney is in talks with Star, Sony and ESPN-Star Sports to distribute three of its channels -- Playhouse, Toons and TDC by October-November this year.
Currently, Cartoon Network rules the small screen for children along with Pogo which was launched late last year. And to join this crowd in July, is Sony Pictures Entertainment Networks Asia's Animax, featuring popular Japanese animation, which will be distributed by the One Alliance (a joint venture between Sony Entertainment Television and Discovery Communications India).
What's causing all this hectic activity? Says Apurva Purohit, chief operating officer, Times Television, "As the television set moves from the drawing room into the bedroom and individual viewership (versus family viewership) increases, channels catering to individual interests like gardening or extreme sports will multiply."
Times Television will be a stand-alone channel as far as distribution is concerned and will be telecasting both channels on the Panamsat 10 satellite.
That's not the only reason for the sudden popularity of niche channels. Channels and media houses need to cut through the noise that exists on air currently and create strong differentiators.
It was Peter Mukerjea who put it bluntly in an interview recently. "Dipstick surveys," he said, "showed that while Star Plus does deliver the eyeballs, the profile of the audience did not attract all types of advertisers."
Star found that Star Plus was not a first choice for auto companies for instance. So the group came up with a premium entertainment channel, Star One.
Sharma hired market research firm IMRB to find what would pull in viewers. Research showed that viewers wanted a channel that would raise issues related to people.
"Our research and interaction with people in small towns indicated that the existing channels all have the same feel," he says. Which is where, he claims India TV will differ. "Our focus will be more people oriented."
One way forward -- which minimises risks -- is the route which Zee has taken. It has launched 10 new channels in the last months. But nine of these (Action Cinema, Premier Cinema, FX, Malibu TV, Platinum TV, Euro Sports News) are pay channels exclusively for direct-to-home viewers. Only one channel -- Smile TV -- is free to air on cable television.
Says Abhijit Saxena, director, international business who also heads Smile TV, "We found that sitcoms were a genre that have elicited tremendous response. So while it is a niche because its exclusively comedy, the appeal is mass." Adds an industry observer: "With niche channels, you can attract specific sets of audiences and advertisers."
Some channels are hoping to grab an affluent segment of niche viewers. For instance, both Zoom and Star One are targeted towards the upwardly mobile viewer based in the metros. The programming will be in Hindi, but Mukerjea claims it will be zippy.
Similarly, the target audience for both of Times Television's channels is the premium, urban contemporary Indian residing in 100,000-plus population towns. Research showed that this audience is looking for a Hindi option beyond serials, soaps and movies that was not available. Says Purohit, "It showed the need for a premium non-fiction channel."
Then Star Utsav, also free-to-air, airing mostly re-runs of popular Star Plus soaps, is aimed at taking revenue from the likes of SAB TV and Sahara Manoranjan. Setting up Star Utsav has cost Star Rs 4.5 crore (Rs 45 million) (less than the normal Rs 10 crore (Rs 100 million) to Rs 20 crore (Rs 200 million) that it takes to launch channels in India) including the transponder cost.
Star is also looking at channels down south either through joint ventures or acquisitions. It already has a tie up with UTV for Vijay TV and has extended that for distributing the children's channel, Hungama TV.
Says Mukerjea, "We have to spread ourselves and the south is attractive if we have to grow. In Hindi entertainment, while Star Plus continues to be the flagship, other gaps need to be addressed."
But will the consumer bite? Media buyers are extremely sceptical about so many channels -- niche or otherwise -- co-existing profitably. "It's too soon to tell whether such a huge demand will exist for a niche channel," says one Mumbai-based media planner.
It's an expensive gamble. Typically, launching a channel costs over Rs 10 crore for infrastructure, content and publicity. India TV was set up with an investment of Rs 70 crore (Rs 700 million), part of which was sourced from banks with the rest from friends and relatives.
It has hired a team of 300 people in addition to 150 stringers. Times Television will outsource 50 per cent of its programming while the rest will be produced in-house. Similarly, Zee will be producing most of the content for Smile TV in-house to contain costs.
There are other challenges ahead. The biggest is to convince advertisers about the new channels. Most of the channels are free-to-air, which means they depend entirely on advertising.
Media planners say niche channels usually sell ad air-time at less than half the cost of mainstream channels. The break even for each is estimated at two to three years. If this isn't tough enough, there's also the question of distribution.
India TV, for instance, has distributed 1,400 decoder boxes in 370 cities, primarily in the north and north-east. But it's still not available in many regions.
But channel heads are optimistic that Indian audiences are clamouring for more.
Says Purohit, "The Indian viewer has still not seen true fragmentation, which will happen only when the market evolves in terms of both technology and viewing maturity . It will become increasingly viable for such channels to flourish with the advent of addressability." If she's right the rush to go on air is only just beginning.
Cost pushes Jaipal away from DTH
New Delhi, June 20: Doordarshan’s grand plans to launch a direct-to-home platform next month may be grounded as information and broadcasting minister S. Jaipal Reddy believes that the Rs 500 crore required for the project could be better utilised in other ventures.
Unfazed, Prasar Bharati is going ahead with its plan and is discussing launch dates for July. Prasar Bharati CEO K.S. Sarma, who is expected back from Philadelphia next week, is scheduled to meet the minister and ask him to inaugurate the launch.
Sarma points out that Reddy had pushed DTH in his first term as minister. But Reddy now appears to have reservations about ploughing funds into the project and has clearly indicated that the government is having second thoughts on it.
The minister argues that there is no need for Prasar Bharati to compete with private companies to provide a direct-to-home service, which is an expensive proposition. Reddy has no objection to private players going ahead with it, but says it cannot be a priority for the national broadcaster, which has many other urgent commitments.
However, no official order has been given to scrap the DTH launch. Ministry officials say it is up to the government to review the platform if it wants to.
Prasar Bharati officials contend that DTH is the vehicle of the future and is popular internationally. “DD will have to adopt it today or tomorrow, so why not start early? It is part of our objective to go international and give our competition a run for their money,” said a senior Doordarshan official.
The cabinet committee on economic affairs last November okayed Doordarshan’s foray into DTH and sanctioned Rs 1,650 million in the first phase which could be disbursed over three years starting with the current financial year.
The public broadcaster’s DTH service would not cost the subscriber any monthly subscription. The one-time cost of installation of hardware would be approximately Rs 6,000 and this is expected to come down to Rs 3,000 as the service gains popularity, government officials said.
The committee also approved, in principle, a proposal that Doordarshan can after three years “go pay” with its DTH service to generate additional revenue for continuing with the service. This means that subscribers would have to pay a monthly subscription for the service as they would pay for any other DTH service in the country.
Initially, Doordarshan’s DTH platform would have 30 channels with 20 of them being the public broadcaster’s and the remaining free-to-air channels. The transponders on the Insat satellite have already been leased and the uplink infrastructure is expected to be ready by early next year.
To cater to people without access to cable television, Doordarshan’s DTH service would target remote and hilly areas without neglecting urban areas.
Siti, Hathway, among slew of channel applicants awaiting I&B clearance
NEW DELHI: It may be a bit surprising, but two big multi-system operators (MSOs), Siti Cable and Hathway Datacom, are among 32 applicants who have sought government clearance for starting TV channels beaming through a satellite.
According to government data, Siti Cable Network Pvt. Ltd. has sought permission from the information and broadcasting ministry for a channel called Delhi TV. The Rajan Raheja-controlled Hathway, however, had not clarified to the government the name of the proposed channel, and after applying, a government paper states, "the company sought to keep its proposal pending for the time being."
Both the applications were made quite some time back. The ministry received Siti's application in 2002 and the last clarification that the government had sought was in January 2003. As of March 2004, according to the government, no reply had been received from Siti Cable, the cable arm of Subhash Chandra's Zee Telefilms.
Still, it is pertinent to mention here that Hathway Datacom also runs cable networks in various cities under the brand name Win. The latter recently started a premier movie channel on its networks in Delhi, christened Win Movies, which is cable delivered and shows comparatively newer Hindi movies.
The others who had applied for government clearance --- and are yet to receive one --- include Gemini Network Pvt. Ltd., which has expressed its intention to start a channel called Mantra. The government sought transponder lease agreement, project report and source of funding from the applicant that are yet to arrive.
TVC Skyshop.com Ltd's proposal to start a TVC channel, vide a letter sent in July 2003, is still under examination by the government. Ditto for Ramesh Sharma's Dilli One channel and, may be, another shopping channel from Seven Star Shopping Network Pvt. Ltd.
A proposal from AV Entertainment Ltd. for starting a channel called See News too has been pending government clearance since 2003. Reason: the company had proposed to uplink through its own teleport, which, according to government data, has not yet been operationalised.
Several of the applications, which had been referred to the ministry of home affairs and department of space earlier this year, are yet to be sent back to the I&B ministry with comments. These include proposals from Lamhas Entertainment Ltd (for Lamhas Classic channel), Total Telefilms Pvt. Ltd (Total TV) and SGA News Ltd's SGA News channel.
There are, of course, some usual suspects too like Zee Sports Ltd that, according to the government, has sought clearance for Alpha News channels in March 2004. It is pertinent to note here that Zee hopes to launch its fifth regional language channel (recent acquisition etc Punjabi not included here) under the Alpha basket, in August. Media reports have said that Zee Telefilms CMD Subhash Chandra was in Hyderabad recently to oversee preparation work ahead of the launch of Alpha Telugu.
Other little known companies evincing interest in starting TV channels, also include Winning Edge Communication Ltd for a channel called Satya, Tamil Entertainment Art Media Ltd for Tamil Thirai, Amrita Enterprises Ltd for Amma TV, On Shanti Channel Pvt. Ltd for On Shanti-the Peace Channel, Orion media Pvt. Ltd for ITN, Wisdom Broadcasting Network Ltd for Wisdom broadcasting Network, Omsons Entertainment TV Network for HTV (no connection with Hindustan Times, though) and Sanskriti Communication Pvt Ltd. for Sanskriti.
All the aforementioned cases are pending government okay and are in various stages of clearances. A senior I&B ministry official said that because of the general elections, the ministry had not been able to concentrate on the proposals.
TELE-satellite News - Number 25/2004 20 June 2004 -
A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by
Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition
A S I A & P A C I F I C
HBO ASIA EXTENDS SATELLITE CARRIAGE DEAL
Loral Skynet on June 14 announced that it has renewed
an agreement with HBO Pacific Partners, V.O.F., to
distribute the region's leading entertainment
channels, HBO and Cinemax, across Asia through its
television arm HBO Asia. In accordance with the long-
term agreement, Loral's Telstar 10 satellite will
continue to distribute HBO Asia's programming to
thousands of cable outlets across Asia.
Singapore-based HBO Asia brings the best of Hollywood
to Asia through its exclusive first-run licensing
deals with major Hollywood studios including Columbia
Tri/Star, DreamWorks, Paramount Pictures, Universal
Studios and Warner Bros. In addition to proprietary
and award-winning HBO Original programming produced
exclusively for its viewers, HBO Asia works with a
number of prominent independent studios to secure
exclusive rights to a host of quality movies HBO
Pacific Partners, V.O.F. is a joint venture of media
giants Paramount Films, Sony Pictures Entertainment,
Time Warner and Universal Studios. Launched in 1997,
Telstar 10 is located at 76.5 degrees East and carries
27 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders (36 MHz
equivalents). The C- band payload provides coverage of
Asia, Australia, parts of Europe and Africa. The
Ku-band payload covers Korea, Taiwan, Macau and China,
including Hong Kong.
RUSSIA’S KULTURA TV CHANNEL FROM SEPTEMBER
The Russian TV channel "Kultura" will be broadcast in
Armenia from September. The head of Russian State
Radio and Television Company Oleg Dobrodeyev, founder
of "Kultura" TV, arrived last week in Armenia to sign
agreement. The Russian "Kultura" promises to show
films on Armenian culture when it is broadcast in
BROADCASTERS HAVE DIFFERENT DIGITAL TV STRATEGIES
The Nine, Ten and Seven networks have revealed
divergent policies for how they plan to use their
digital TV signals. The Seven Network, which has
always wanted to offer extra channels (called
multi-channels) on its digital TV signal, revealed it
initially wants those channels to be free from
Australian content regulations. Meanwhile, Nine
remains opposed to multi-channelling while Ten has
changed its policy and now essentially wants to offer
a pay-TV service on its digital TV channel.
Multi-channelling and the issue of whether to create a
fourth TV network are being canvassed in the current
federal Government digital TV reviews. Godwin argued
multi-channelling would complement the main Channel
Seven service while giving people a compelling reason
to buy digital TVs.
CTVA BECOMES FREE TV AUSTRALIA
The industry body representing Australia's free-to-air
commercial broadcasters, Commercial Television
Australia (CTVA), has renamed itself Free TV
Australia. The change of name came as it launched a
campaign underlining the industry's commitment to
strive for the right of all Australians to continue to
receive quality local and overseas programming for
free. Research undertaken by Free TV Australia in
April this year has confirmed that viewers' overall
satisfaction with commercial free-to-air television is
high at 70 per cent. The major value for consumers is
that "it's free". Free TV Australia says the country's
free television has been providing the best quality
entertainment and information for nearly 50 years and
reaches over 98 per cent of the population. Free TV
continues to be the best medium for advertisers to
build brands and drive profitable growth for their
business, it says. The new research confirms that Free
TV is overwhelmingly consumers' premier choice for
news and current affairs (70 per cent), drama (54 per
cent) and first-run programming (50 per cent).
CHINA HONG KONG
I-CABLE REPORTS JUMP IN SUBSCRIBER NUMBERS
I-Cable Communications said its pay-TV subscriber base
has grown to almost 670,000 as Euro 2004 gets into
full swing, an increase of about 2 per cent this year.
Chairman Stephen Ng said the pay-TV unit was signing
up between 600 and 1,000 new subscribers a day. Ng
said the digitalisation of receivers, which can block
unauthorised access to the service, was one of the
main reasons for the jump in subscriber numbers.
I-Cable, the only company airing Euro 2004, is
believed to have dashed the hopes of 100,000 football
fans trying to hack in with illegal decoders, the
Chinese-language newspaper Ming Pao said. Just minutes
before kick-off of the opening match between Portugal
and Greece, the code was switched and illegal viewers'
screens went blank. Vendors had boasted they could
hack the Cable TV signals by replacing the smart cards
installed in decoders for US$13 whenever the
broadcaster changed its signal code, according to the
South China Morning Post. About 70 frustrated buyers
of the decoders gathered at the market hoping to get a
refund -- but sellers were nowhere to be seen, the
TIMES GROUP TO LAUNCH TV CHANNEL
THE Times Group is due to launch Zoom, a non-fictional
premium general entertainment channel in the third
quarter of 2004, to be followed by a spiritual
channel, two months later. Zoom will comprise content
outsourced as well as produced in-house. Balaji
Telefilms is one of the production houses in the
process of producing programmes for Zoom. The channel
will be pay, but the officials declined from giving
STAR TO DISTRIBUTE HUNGAMA TV
United Home Entertainment (UHE) on June 14 signed an
MoU with Star India to distribute the former's
proposed TV channel for children, Hungama TV. UHE was
jointly floated by UTV and Ronnie Screwvala, CEO -
UTV, to roll out the channel, which entails an
investment of Rs 100 crore. Hungama TV aims to be the
country's first 24-hour Hindi channel dedicated to the
viewing of children in the age group of 4-15 years.
Star's distribution network reaches over 30 million
Indian homes. The new channel intends to have a panel
of children to approve its programming.
ESPN-STAR GETS ASIA CUP CRICKET RIGHTS
ESPN-STAR Sports has acquired the exclusive worldwide
broadcast and on-ground rights to Asia Cup cricket for
around $14-16 million (Rs 63-72 crore), beating rivals
like Ten Sports and SET Max, according to industry
sources. Just when ESPN will be through with the Euro
2004 on July 4, it would be ready with Asia Cup
cricket, to be played in Sri Lanka between India,
Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, UAE and Hong Kong.
Although ESPN has the exclusive rights for TV, radio,
and on-ground sponsorships, it's open to the idea of
sharing feed with public broadcaster Doordarshan (DD)
for Asia Cup matches, but no discussions have taken
place so far between the two broadcasters on the
PANAMSAT FOR NHK HD DELIVERY
PanAmSat Corporation announced on June 15 that it had
signed an agreement with Japan Broadcasting
Corporation (NHK) to deliver live sporting events and
breaking news in high-definition (HD) format via the
company's worldwide satellite and fiber network. NHK
will uplink news and sporting events across the U.S.
via mobile satellite news gathering (SNG) vehicles to
PanAmSat's domestic satellite fleet. The
high-definition signals will then be downlinked to the
company's Atlanta teleport, where recently installed
HDTV equipment will allow PanAmSat engineers to
monitor the programming content for quality
assuredness. PanAmSat will then provide the
terrestrial fiber link to reach NHK's U.S. gateway in
New York City. All original NHK programming
transmitted to Japan will be sent in high-definition
format for broadcast on their terrestrial, cable and
DTH platforms. Events including Major League Baseball
and the U.S. presidential election are among the many
that PanAmSat will deliver in HD to NHK's U.S. gateway
in New York.
PTV TO GET $71 MILLIONJ FROM LICENSE FEE
The Pakistan Television Corporation (PTV) is expected
to reap US$ 71.6 million annually through a monthly
television licence fee to be collected along with
electricity bills, the Dawn newspaper has reported.
With an electricity consumer base of 13.9 million in
the country, PTV will be able to earn the amount by
collecting a nominal monthly fee of 45 cents through
each electricity bill. The newspaper quoted a
spokesman for PTV as saying the decision to collect
licence fees through electricity bills would also
spare both TV set holders and the collection staff the
difficulties involved in the collection of US$5.40 as
a fee per TV set.
PRISONS LOOSE CABLE TV SIGNAL DUE TO EURO 2004 BETTING
Thai authorities have pulled the plug on cable
television in some prisons over fears that inmates
will gamble on Euro 2004 football matches. 'Some
inmates might be acting as bookies in the prison,'
Corrections Department Director-General Nathee
Chitsawang said on June 16. He added all cable
reception boxes have been removed, and that some
inmates suspected of bookmaking had been transferred
to other prisons. Many Thais are avid fans of European
football and illegal betting on matches, especially
English Premier League games, is widespread. Cable
television was provided in prisons last August to ease
stress and reduce boredom among inmates. It was not
clear if cable TV access would be restored after the
three-week football tournament. Police arrested 353
people across Thailand for gambling on the first day
of the tournament, which is being held in Portugal. In
the past, prisoners have been allowed to watch
videotapes of World Cup football matches as part of an
effort to provide more entertainment to the inmates.
CHANNEL 11 TO DIVIDE FREQUENCY FOR MORE SERVICES
Ignoring criticism that it is flouting the law,
state-owned Channel 11 plans to further divide its
frequency for more broadcasting services, according to
the Bangkok Post. Deputy Prime Minister Visanu
Krue-ngarm, overseeing the Public Relations Department
(PRD) which runs Channel 11, said the PRD could defend
itself against charges that it had breached the
frequency management law and the constitution by
giving two firms contracts to set up Channels 11/1 and
11/2, broadcast via cable and satellite television
systems and also run commercials. Visanu said he had
checked with the PRD if it could have private
operators jointly use its frequency and if those new
stations could air commercials. The PRD told him it
had taken the matter to the Council of State, the
government's legal arm, in January 2002. The council
told it that Channel 11 could branch out by dividing
its frequency and having private firms make programmes
for it with the frequency still being wholly-owned by
the station, Visanu said.
UBC SEEKS MORE SUBSCRIBERS
United Broadcasting, the country’s biggest pay-TV
company that last year posted its first profit, may
spend as much as 1 billion baht (R160.7 million) to
attract subscribers. United Broadcasting is one-third
owned by Naspers, South Africa's biggest media
company. The company, which has about 3.2 billion baht
in cash, plans to add customers after a net decline
last year by following the example of Malaysian pay-TV
monopoly Astro All Asia Networks, which has more than
1 million customers in a country of 25 million people.
The Bangkok-based company may cut its installation fee
and invest in adding local programming content to
increase its 436,193 customer base in a nation of
about 63 million people. Piracy is a major problem. In
a bid to win part of the sales from unlicensed cable
television operators, the firm last year hired RNT as
its sales agent to help legitimise such businesses by
providing them with 10 of the company's own channels.
United expected to earn 72 million baht from the
arrangement this year, which would increase to 600
million baht a year in four years. And its profit
might be boosted should the government agree to its
request to air advertising. The broadcaster's shares
last month plunged on concern the government may delay
approving the company's request.
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
WARNER BROS SIGNS OUTPUT DEAL WITH DUBAI TV
In its largest distribution deal with a free-to-air
Middle East-based broadcaster, Warner Bros.
International Television Distribution has concluded a
multi-year, exclusive deal with Dubai Media
Incorporated (DMI). The deal will bring viewers in the
Middle East of the newly launched Dubai TV the latest
in family viewing, with content from leading global
entertainment company including Hollywood
blockbusters, award-winning television series and hit
animated series. Giving Middle East television new
immediacy and allure, the programming alliance will
see Warner Bros.' premier 2001 and 2002 releases, as
well as feature films from the company's 2003 slate
including The Matrix Trilogy, the Harry Potter films,
The Last Samurai and The Lord Of The Rings films. The
agreement covers some 90 of Warner Bros.' latest
movies, which will air exclusively on Dubai TV in
their free television window, as well as feature films
from the US film studio's comprehensive film library.
The agreement also brings exciting television drama
and comedy such as The Sopranos and the new season of
The West Wing. Completing the family offering will be
Dubai TV's Warner Bros. Kids hour, a dedicated slot
that offers educational and informative viewing. Dubai
TV's footprint extends from the Arabian Gulf to the
Levant and North Africa. The signal can also be
received in the United States of America and
No update Sundays
No update Saturday
Not much to finish the week on, the mystery ku signal on NSS 5? is still there giving a strong signal in NZ. My pick is Vsat internet.
From my Emails & ICQ
Subject: No more Euro 2004 On MRTV
No more Euro 2004 On MRTV Thaicom2/3.
(Craigs comment, fire up those blindsearchers!)
From the Dish
Nothing to report. Lyngsat still on a break
Govt about-turn threatens to take Prime, Sky UHF off air
Prime Television bosses are furious over a government backtrack on assured access to broadcasting rights, saying the move threatens the channel's right to stay on air past 2010.
Sky Television is also concerned by the policy about-turn. The government had indicated just 12 months ago it was working on a formula for UHF TV channels for when the 20-year term ran out.
The formula, which is also being used for FM and AM radio stations and for the four VHF channels (TV One, TV2, TV3 and C4), would have allowed Prime and the five Sky analogue channels to retain their frequencies.
But the Ministry of Economic Development announced last week it wanted an auction for UHF rights, a move that could cost Prime and Sky a bundle. If they bid too low they could be forced off air.
The present 20-year rights end in 2010 but the ministry wants them to be auctioned next year to give enough time for advance planning.
Prime chief executive Chris Taylor described as outrageous the decision to have an auction because just 12 months ago the government had acknowledged the effect of insecure tenure on broadcasting businesses.
If an auction goes ahead, companies like Prime which is under an option to the Kerry Packer PBL organisation would probably bid high to ensure they kept their frequency.
Mr Taylor insisted Prime would retain its frequency and even if the row was not resolved it would not affect PBL decisions about Prime.
"Call me cynical," he said, "but I wonder about the effect on TVNZ if they were in the market for an auction."
He said the state broadcaster was already paying top rights for things like the rights to ABC news and that would boost prices.
He said Prime would work hard to have the government rethink its position.
Sky Network Communications manager Tony O'Brien, said that the 20-year rights did not run out till 2010 and a lot could happen in the industry during that time.
But he said Sky was still making good returns and was committed to its UHF analogue service, which was the start of pay TV in New Zealand.
TVNZ also owns an unused UHF Network (formerly used by Horizon-Pacific) and the Channel 49 frequency, which is being sought for an Auckland group.
But the Ministry of Economic Development has defended the government's move, saying that the proposal to give a 20-year extension of rights to incumbents grandfathering them did not work for UHF television.
A ministry discussion paper released last week spells out the government attitude. It says unlike with radio there is no way to determine the price of UHF TV frequencies other than to auction them.
Indeed, it was claimed during the first frequency auction in 1990 that frequencies had been given away at bargain basement rates largely because the government did not want to be seen to be gouging profits.
Twenty-year rights to UHF networks used by Sky and Prime that allowed the channels to reach 80% of New Zealand households sold in 1999 for $100,000 to $401,000.
A UHF network with seven years of the 20-year lease expired is understood to have been sold for $4.1 million in 1997.
"A combination of factors may have led to these rights being significantly undervalued at original allocation," the ministry paper says. "All were offered under the 'second price tender,' which may not provide realistic base prices for use in the price-setting formula, even with averaging."
UHF television services had not previously been delivered in New Zealand, meaning market acceptance, and hence valuation, was uncertain.
"Under policies recently announced by government, these rights are convertible on request to digital licences (which can provide up to five video programmes), which may enhance their potential value."
The government line is that it needs to run an auction to establish the market value. But that would potentially cause havoc and could force channels off air.
However, parliamentary sources say Associate Communications Minister David Cunliffe is inviting Prime and Sky to come up with a viable market price and avoid an auction.
Ministry of Economic Development radio frequency boss Ian Hutchings said there was no about-face and there was some "fine print" in the announcement that forewarned there could be exceptions to the grandfathering scheme.
The upshot is that government policy for selling off radio frequencies appears to have given away UHF TV frequencies at bargain-basement prices.
And now the broadcasters are being invited to show a mechanism so they can keep the competition out. That is until the rights run out again, in another 20 years.
The rights to UHF frequencies 'are convertible on request to digital licences (which can provide up to five video programmes), which may enhance their potential value'
Murdoch steps aside from BSkyB post
RUPERT Murdoch has stepped down from a key committee at British satellite broadcaster BSkyB, in a move observers interpreted as a willingness to respond to shareholder concerns about the influence of the media mogul and his family.
Europe's largest pay-TV channel also reorganised its board in the wake of shareholder dissent over the appointment last year of Mr Murdoch's younger son James, 31, as the company's chief executive.
Rupert Murdoch is BSkyB's chairman and his The News Corporation Ltd, publisher of The Australian, owns a 35 per cent share in the broadcaster.
Investors protested vigorously at the BSkyB annual general meeting in London in November last year against a father-son combination at the head of the company and questioned its corporate governance and the Murdochs' power over the board.
Rupert Murdoch hit back at critics at the time who claimed his son's appointment to the top job smacked of nepotism and that James Murdoch did not have enough experience for the job.
In the reorganisation, Rupert Murdoch and fellow News executive David DeVoe have stepped down from the remunerations committee, while Mr DeVoe and Arthur Siskind have resigned from the audit committee.
The committees will be made up of independent non-executives, although Rupert Murdoch, Mr DeVoe and Mr Siskind will be able to attend meetings in a "non-voting observer" capacity only.
THAILAND: More frequency carve-ups likely
Ignoring criticism that it is flouting the law, state-owned Channel 11 plans to further divide its frequency for more broadcasting services
Deputy Prime Minister Visanu Krue-ngarm, overseeing the Public Relations Department (PRD) which runs Channel 11, said the PRD could defend itself against charges that it had breached the frequency management law and the constitution by giving two firms contracts to set up Channels 11/1 and 11/2, broadcast via cable and satellite television systems and also run commercials.
Advertisements are banned on Channel 11 under a cabinet resolution.
Mr Visanu said he had checked with the PRD if it could have private operators jointly use its frequency and if those new stations could air commercials.
The PRD told him it had taken the matter to the Council of State, the government's legal arm, in January 2002. The council told it that Channel 11 could branch out by dividing its frequency and having private firms make programmes for it with the frequency still being wholly-owned by the station, Mr Visanu said.
"Channels 11/1 and 11/2 are nothing strange. In the future there can be Channels 11/3, 4,5,6, 7 or 8," Mr Visanu said. He also was told that Channel 11 was negotiating with the Finance Ministry on the production of economic news programmes for Channel 11/3, and with the Public Health Ministry on health promotion programmes which, if agreed, would be aired on Channel 11/4.
PL Television Co, which changed its name to RNT News Co, and Braveheart International Plc, were awarded contracts to run Channels 11/1 - a news station - and 11/2 - a sports station - without having to bid for them because they were "professional" producers of news and sports programmes, he said. The two firms were among 32 companies producing programmes for Channel 11.
Mr Visanu said the PRD might give any of the 32 producers a contract to run future branches of Channel 11 without calling bids again because that was not against the law.
He also said there was no law banning commercials on Channel 11. There was only a cabinet resolution prohibiting the station running advertisements for viewers in Bangkok, but not in the provinces, Mr Visanu said.
Channels 11/1 and 11/2 could now air logos and spots promoting state agencies or private firms for Bangkok viewers and products for provincial audiences, he said.
Mr Visanu, however, said he would verify all that PRD had told him.
The Campaign for Popular Democracy (CPD) said Mr Visanu's defence of Channel 11 was merely a whitewash.
CPD secretary-general Suriyasai Katasila said Channel 11 had clearly breached the frequency management law. Channel 11 was set up as free TV so anyone could watch it but it let private operators use its frequency for programmes that could be seen only on pay TV, he said. The CPD would ask the ombudsman to investigate the matter.
On June 24 the senate committee on social development and human security would hear from army chief Gen Chaisit Shinawatra and PRD deputy chief Dusadee Sinjermsiri as it begins an inquiry on alleged breaches of the constitution by state-owned Channels 5 and 11 for giving control over their frequencies to private businesses.
Chairman Niran Pithakwatchara said his panel believed that Channel 5, which signed a deal handing its authority to RTA Entertainment Co to deal with its contract partners, and Channel 11's decision to let two firms use its frequency, had opened holes for the private sector to own state property.
Gen Chaisit, meanwhile, warned politicians who criticised his approvement of Channel 5's deal with RTA Entertainment to stay out of army business, and challenged them to meet him face to face.
In an outburst of anger, he said some politicians had used their fathers' power to avoid serving in the military. "Some sought to work as instructors of the Chulachomklao Royal Military Academy, then got a scholarship and went to study abroad and left the army after that," he said, in a veiled reference to one of his critics, Democrat MP Abhisit Vejjajiva.
Trai yet to decide on DTH architecture
NEW DELHI: Broadcast and cable regulator, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), which is slated to come out with its recommendations on the cable industry by next month, is still undecided whether to have open architecture for KU-band direct-to-home TV service or not.
Though issues related to DTH were not scheduled to be discussed during a meeting Trai recently had with pay broadcasters, it did come up and a representative from the regulator dwelt on the matter in passing.
What's more, the Trai representative at the forementioned meeting, while dwelling on the issue of 'must provide' and 'must carry' clause, said a final decision ought not to be taken till the time another service provider started a DTH venture.
At the moment, India has only one DTH service, Dish TV, promoted by the Subhash Chandra-controlled ASC Enterprise and Zee Telefilms. Though Doordarshan may start its DTH service before the Tata-Star combine, Dish TV's main competitor is the latter.
Contacted by indiantelevision.com to verify whether DTH-related matters were brought up at the recent Trai meeting, a senior executive of Zee Telefilms confirmed the development, saying that Trai's stand on both the issues were "unwarranted for the occasion" and put Dish TV at a disadvantage vis-à-vis any new entrant in the sector.
However, the Zee executive also attempted to soft peddle the matter adding that since DTH is a new technology in India even the regulator would need some more time to complete studying all the issues.
Attempts made by indiantelevision.com to elicit a response from Trai proved futile till the time of writing this report.
Taking into account that Trai may be just attempting to sound out interested players on various DTH issues, it would be interesting to see the final stand taken by the regulator on the issues mentioned above. The niggling thought of the present government stripping Trai of powers to hold sway over the broadcast and cable industry, notwithstanding. (I&B minister Jaipal Reddy is more interested in a separate broadcast regulator.)
It is also understood that Zee has conveyed to Trai that it would like to make a separate submission on open vs. closed architecture (during initial days Star lobbied against open architecture) and must-provide clause.
I should have all the info about the new Filipino Pas8 DTH service next week
Sorry about the late site update things are hectic and will be busier next week!
NEW SIGNAL??? KU approx 12700 V past I 804 possibly 177W nss5 ? non mpg can be detected at my place on 76cm most likley you will need a spec analyser or analog receiver to find this one as it is a carrier only. Please check and report. Might be Fiji TV?
June issue of Satmagazine is online at http://www.satmagazine.com
Jon's Asia Weekly
"I am an appliance operator and I am proud of it!"
So you have a satellite system. You press the channel selector on the remote control, and bingo you are watching another channel on your favorite satellite.
Gone are the days when you had to know where in the sky the satellite was, then spend ten minutes tuning in each channel.
We have two types of users in this hobby of ours, classed as follows;
1. The “appliance operator”
2. The “DX hunter / enthusiast”
The “appliance operator” category is by far the most common type of satellite TV user. In fact it is possible this is you. The appliance operator just loves new technology, just loves to press a button and get a result, and relies on “those other guys” to find new channels for me.
While the “DX hunter / enthusist” is in the minority, these are the guys who make our hobby what it is. They spend their spare time hunting for new channels, looking for any changes on the satellites, they are always tweaking their systems to make it work better (by themselves) or give them a better picture and they never say “it’s impossible”, they always say “it just takes a little longer”
My hat goes off to this small band of people who do this for us and then take the time to put all this information on web sites around the world.
OK! Take off your shoes and socks and then hold up your hands. Now count the twenty digits you have there (you do have 20 right?) right, now that you have done this you have just counted how many top notch resource web sites there are out there across the world. Get the idea? Keep up the good work chaps.
The good news is that most of the set top box OEM’s also take note of the work these guys do, and include many of the satellites, the channels and other details into their STB’s to enhance our viewer experience.
So what are you?
Well we started the sweep of the western hemisphere here this week, after spending the last few months looking to the East, with equally good results. Our list of KU band satellites is growing as we add more and more to it.
Finds this week include the following KU band satellites;
Eutelsat W5 70.5 E
Yamal 102/201 at 90.0 E
A new group of Indonesian channels popped up on NSS6 KU, albeit they are encrypted, nice to see more on the SEA beam. Also two new’ish Korean channels on there as well “Omnuri1” and “Vision Life” ..
Lots of new FTA on Telstar 10 KU been a while since I have looked at this bird. I note they have over the last few months done a major reshuffle of the channels. MAC TV from Taiwan is also on there, and like the BBC can be found all over the skies here in Asia (Mr. Prasit here says it is the like a virus, as it is every where) and is also on PAS 8 KU, I am watching it as I write this article.
On the topic of PAS 8 KU ST Teleport from Singapore continues to provide great sports and entertainment feeds. Was watching a SL vrs WI cricket highlights package this morning, much to my delight.
HOT: 10 foot Dynasat Extra dishes on the KU Band all I can say is “wow”. Up to 15 signal points higher than the 7.5 foot extra. WOW!
Euro2004 has hit the world by storm. The police here in Thailand have been clamping down on illegal sport gambling big time. In one town which shall remain nameless, they have even made all the bars in a certain part of town close earlier during this time, as one pub was caught open at 3:30am watching the second game of the night. Yikes…
The best viewing of the Euro2004 soccer on the C Band in my humble opinion has been on Burma International on their C band bouquet on Thaicom 2/3.
Details are as follows;
Satellite: Thaicom 2/3
Followed a close second by TV3 on Measat 1 C Band, from Malaysia.
A tie for third would be;
Eurosport News on As 2
VTV on Measat 1 C band (Measat 2 KU as well)
CTN on Thaicom 1 C Band
Overall though, the grand prize winner across the C & KU bands would have to be the Philippine cable operator “Dream”. Their new FIFA line up has to be the best across the region (or so I am told). You lucky guys having all that content over there 24 hours a day. Our cable operator over here forgets to turn the English sub audio channel on most of the time so it is off to MRTV for me..
= = = = = =
Lots of noise this week about the new UCAS box called the “Victory”
Spotted new firmware updates for the Humax
A new Metabox firmware upgrade came out 10 days ago and promptly killed ½ the boxes in the world. Do not use 4.05 chaps, a bad job.
New SS PCI cards hit the Thai market
= = = = = =
HOT: the new 10 foot extra from Dynasat.
= = = = = =
Well what can I say about sport this week except 1:1 guys!
Yes the State of Origin was on this week and this is the reason my article is delayed (soar head and no sleep), sorry Craig.
Nice to see the kiwis did the pom’s in the rugby last weekend. What a white wash that was. The Aussies did Ok against Scotland, so this is turning out to be a must watch series.
Shame the pom’s did the kiwis in the cricket, but they have to win something this month, right?
We are so spoiled for sport these days DD Sport, EuroSport, Dubai Sport, Star Sport, ESPN, SuperSport (for MC & UBC subscribers) and all the feeds on AS 3S, Palapa C2, PAS 8 KU, PAS 2 and so on…
Olympic fever is hotting up.
= = = = = =
So many people claiming to have done naughty things to Irdeto II only to be proven to be a scam. Readers of some of the Asian / African BBS and web boards will have seen the bun fights this week.
On this subject, look at the Irdeto web site if you want a job catching pirates, they are hiring!
More and more upload centers are popping up over the world, and more and more of them are targeting north America (went quite for a long time). I guess the recent law suit / ruling re the UCAS kit being OK, has spurred this on.
If a government gives you a concession to run a satellite channel for the “society” of that country, does this mean you can try and beat the international sports casters.
Think 22 countries across Asia, think 2,000,000 viewers. What free to air C band network is this? (HINT: only on the C Band) Send your answers to both of these questions to the apsattv yahoo mailing list.
If you have news or gossip, please send it to Jon at email@example.com
From my Emails & ICQ
Nothing to report
From the Dish
Lyngsat on a break
Loral-Built Telstar 18 Satellite Sets Sail for Late June Launch
From Press Release
Satellite To Join Loral's Telstar 10/Apstar IIR In Offering Transponder and IP-based Network Services to Expanding Asian Markets
NEW YORK, June 16 /PRNewswire/ -- Loral Space & Communications today announced that the Telstar 18 satellite has set sail aboard Sea Launch's Odyssey Launch Platform, bound for its equatorial launch site in the Pacific Ocean. Lift-off aboard a Sea Launch Zenit 3SL rocket is scheduled for June 28, 2004.
"When it enters service in August, the Telstar 18 satellite will add substantial capacity in Asia, one of Loral's most successful FSS markets," said Terry Hart, president, Loral Skynet. "Telstar 18 will join the already in-orbit Telstar 10 in serving Asia, offering cable, broadcast and SkyReach IP service connectivity stretching from Europe, through Asia and Australia, then on to the U.S. via Hawaii."
Built by Space Systems/Loral (SS/L) and operated by Loral Skynet -- both subsidiaries of Loral Space & Communications -- Telstar 18 will be located at 138 degrees East longitude and carry a total of 54 active transponders, sixteen high-power Ku-band transponders and thirty-eight C-band transponders.
In consideration for funding a portion of the satellite project's cost, APT Satellite Company Limited, Hong Kong, will initially acquire use of 68.5 percent of Telstar 18's capacity for Apstar V services. The number of transponders used by APT will be reduced over time, ultimately to 54 percent of the satellite's capacity. For more information on APT, visit http://www.apstar.com.
In addition to transmitting cable programming and direct-to-home broadcasting services, Telstar 18 will host Skynet's SkyReach two-way IP-based end-to-end networking solution. SkyReach(SM), which is already available and in use by several customers throughout the Americas, allows organizations to create an instant infrastructure using a VSAT network, connecting offices within a city or around the globe.
Telstar 18 is a version of SS/L's space-proven 1300 satellite platform, which has an excellent record of reliable operation. The geostationary 1300 has a designed service life of 13 years and maintains station-keeping and orbital stability by using bipropellant propulsion and momentum-bias systems. In all, SS/L satellites have amassed more than 1,000 years of on-orbit service.
Loral's other Asian satellite, Telstar 10/Apstar IIR, is operating at 76.5 degrees East longitude and is more than 80 percent utilized. Telstar 10 provides service for data applications throughout the region and also hosts one of the largest video communities in Asia.
A pioneer in the satellite industry, Loral Skynet continues to deliver the superior service quality and range of satellite solutions that have made it an industry leader for more than 40 years. Through the broad coverage of the Telstar satellite fleet, and in combination with its established hybrid VSAT/fiber global network infrastructure, Skynet is a source for all broadcast, data network, Internet access, IP and systems integration needs. Headquartered in Bedminster, New Jersey, Loral Skynet is dedicated to providing secure, high-quality connectivity and communications. For more information, visit http://www.loralskynet.com.
Space Systems/Loral is a premier designer, manufacturer, and integrator of powerful satellites and satellite systems. SS/L also provides a range of related services that include mission control operations and procurement of launch services. Based in Palo Alto, Calif., the company has an international base of commercial and government customers whose applications include broadband digital communications, direct-to-home broadcast, defense communications, environmental monitoring, and air traffic control. SS/L is ISO 9001:2000 certified. For more information, visit http://www.ssloral.com.
Loral Skynet and Space Systems/Loral are both subsidiaries of Loral Space & Communications (OTC Bulletin Board: LRLSQ - News). For more information, visit Loral's web site at http://www.loral.com.
This document contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. In addition, Loral Space & Communications Ltd. or its representatives have made or may make forward-looking statements, orally or in writing, which may be included in, but are not limited to, various filings made by the company with the Securities and Exchange Commission, press releases or oral statements made with the approval of an authorized executive officer of the company. Actual results could differ materially from those projected or suggested in any forward-looking statements as a result of a wide variety of factors and conditions. These factors include those related to the filing, on July 15, 2003 by Loral and certain of its subsidiaries, of voluntary petitions for reorganization under chapter 11 of title 11 of the United States Code in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York and parallel insolvency proceedings in the Supreme Court of Bermuda in which certain partners of KPMG were appointed as joint provisional liquidators. Additional factors and conditions are also described in the section of the company's annual report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2003, entitled "Commitments and Contingencies," and the company's other filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The reader is specifically referred to these documents.
Contact: John McCarthy
Asia to lead recovery in satellite launches
Singapore - Asia would lead a global recovery in the commercial satellite market as the region's telecommunications giants scrambled to have their own relay stations launched into orbit, European industry specialist Arianespace said yesterday.
Arianespace chief executive Jean-Yves Le Gall said the global commercial satellite market was recovering from its worst-ever crisis, caused by the burst of the dotcom bubble.
He was speaking on the sidelines of CommunicAsia, the region's biggest annual telecommunications trade fair.
Le Gall said growing demand for direct television links through satellites and high-speed internet connections was expected to encourage telecommunications firms to put up their own stations.
The recovery should start this year, with 15 satellite launches expected worldwide - still down from the previous annual average of between 20 and 30.
Le Gall expected Arianespace to get eight of the 15 contracts.
The company had already signed deals this year to launch four satellites for companies in Japan and Australia.
Arianespace is the world's leading carrier of commercial satellites, accounting for 60 percent of the launches
SingTel buys two-way satellite broadband system from Nera
SINGAPORE : SingTel has inked a deal to buy a two-way satellite broadband system from Nera Telecommunications.
The deal could cost up to US$$100 million depending on SingTel's requirement.
The system will form part of SingTel's push into the region to provide an e-learning infrastructure.
It is made up of a Nera SatLink Hub, which will be based in Singapore, and several terminals spread across the Asia Pacific region.
As for the satellite connection, it is using SingTel's ST-1 satellite.
The system will be used to provide the infrastructure for interactive distance learning in the Asia Pacific region.
Though the deal has just been signed the system could be operational soon.
"The service is intended to be deployed sometime from August onwards because, as you know, systems take time to set up and get installed and commissioned," said Tay Chek Khoon, vice president (regional satellite business) at SingTel.
So just how much would a system roll-out of this magnitude cost?
"I would think that it's more than US$20 million sort of business in the South East Asian countries. But if you cast this out on an Asia context it could go to US$50 to US$100 million in business potential for broadband satellite leasing," said Samuel Ang, president and chief executive of Nera.
Despite the sums involved, Nera sees much potential in the market for the systems.
"We are talking to potential customers in India, in China and as well as in Japan. We have interest, great interest, in this new system," Mr Ang said.
Besides e-learning, the system could also be use as part of movie distribution network for digital cinema and rural communications throughout Asia. - CNA
Satellite TV firm to tout Thailand
Satellite television operator RNT Television has asked TV Global Network (TGN) to co-produce programmes designed to lure foreign investment and tourists to Thailand.
Discussions are already underway, according to Pol Colonel Ruamnakorn Tubtimthongchai, RNT Television’s chief executive. TGN is the satellite television operator of Channel 5 and airs in 175 countries.
The ultimate goal of the programming would be to present Thailand in all its aspects, Ruamnakorn said.
Programmes would focus on supporting foreign investment in Thailand. The company envisions broadcasting documentaries about Thailand’s golf-course industry aimed at Japanese viewers to encourage them to invest in the industry here.
“We expect to spend Bt400 million on programme production. Our programmes will be in five languages, Thai, English, Chinese, Japanese and Arabic,” he added.
The company will also join with Board of Investment, and the Finance and Industry ministries to produce a show on the economy called “Thailand Outlook” for TGN’s channel.
“We’ll also link up with many content and production house partners, including Workpoint, Media of Media and JSL, to jointly produce such satellite TV programmes,” Ruamnakorn added.
RNT Television has Bt400 million in registered capital and plans to list on the Stock Exchange of Thailand this year. It will hire Asia Plus Securities as its financial advisor and underwriter, Ruamnakorn said.
RNT Television owns RNT Group Co Ltd, which will start offering mobile phone-based utility-bill-payment services by next month.
Sompob Shinawatra, a cousin of Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, is managing director of RNT Group.
Sompob said the mobile-payment service is expected to secure 2 million customers this year.
Another subsidiary of RNT Television is RNT News, which plans to co-produce satellite television programmes with Channel 11.
ISRO developing advanced version of GSLV
CHENNAI: The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is currently developing an advanced version of the geo-synchronous satellite launch vehicle - GSLV-MK III, former ISRO chairman and Rajya Sabha member K Kasturirangan said on Wednesday.
Delivering the 33rd Nayudamma Memorial Science Foundation Lecture on ‘Space technology and applications - new directions for the future’, Kasturirangan, who is also the director, National Institute of Advanced Studies, said: ‘‘The GSLV- MK III is currently in its initial stage - it is expected to be developed by 2007. This will have the capability to launch four-tonne satellites into geo-synchronous transfer orbit (GTO).
‘‘When ready, it will be the most cost-effective and reliable launch vehicle,’’ he said.
According to him, the GSLV-MK III was only the first in a series of ambitious projects which formed the country’s space vision.
‘‘From the year 2,000 ISRO has entered the expansion phase - this phase will witness consolidation, innovative missions and a host of newer services being offered through satellites.
‘‘The space vision includes carrying out manned lunar mission, planetary missions and building reuseable launch vehicles.’’
The former ISRO chairman noted that ‘Chandrayan-1 mission’ (Indian lunar mission) was a step in this direction, more so, since it also marked the nation’s first foray into space study beyond the Moon.
However, Kasturirangan reiterated that the space programme would be relevant only if it could contribute towards enhancing the quality of life and act as a catalyst to drive economic growth.
‘‘Our space mission must be a tool for social upliftment and it is important that social relevance continues to drive the mission. The immediate future will see ISRO launch a series of Edusats, besides launching an Astrosat and a Healthsat,’’ he said.
‘‘The Edusat, the ‘teacher in the sky,’ which is under development, will seek to bring about school, university, knowledge connectivity. We are working with Anna University and IITs to address challenges with the ground systems.
‘‘The Healthsat can bring health kiosks, mobile kiosks and medical advice centres and experts under one roof thus ushering in an health revolution,’’ he added.
The societal vision must lead to the development of several intelligent and smart thematic satellites, which can be integrated to the terrestrial network - ‘‘these can be a tool to address issues such as health, education, natural resources management, disaster mitigation, pollution control, civil services, home security and aerial surveying,’’ Kasturirangan pointed out.
Correction Jon's mystery sat signal from yesterday some important info was dropped off the details saying "Somewhere between NSS6 and Chinastar .." that should narrow it down 87.5- 95E perhaps a Chinasat testing at 92.2E? moved from 103E? One reader has commented the DPC is perhaps the Direct PC internet service off ST1 88E.
TFC Australia now has pictures testing but with no Audio. There is big interest in this new service! My email box has been full of emails from Filipinos wanting more info.
Pas 8 4080 V mentioned FTA yesterday FTA the Symbol rate has changed from what Lyngsat shows to SR 30000
Live Euro 2004 streams on the net.
From my Emails & ICQ
It is Good news about new TV service with Filipino channels. All my family can cancel our Tarb's.
They charge us to much money for Filipino channels.
What is the number or address to subscribe to new service?
From Sakay B
All this time we are paying many crazy dollars to tarbs company per month just to receive our channels. Now I am reading on apsattv site about new service. When can it start? if next month we need to know so we can cancel our tarbs at end of this month.
For a long time tarbs company have roumer about getting gma channel soon. We think its story to stop people cancel and change to new service!
Thank you for your website telling us the news, my family excited now
From Jon C (Thailand)
New KU Band satellite in Bangkok.
So the western searches for KU band satellites continues.
I can confirm finding the following TP's on "Eutelsat
W5 at 70.5°E" (a first for BKK I think as have never
seen it mentioned before)
Channel Name: NTD TV
Found but no lock:
From D Kotak (India)
Four new channels started on LM-1 Frequency 12517 V 21500 3/4
Viasat TV1000 (Movies)
From the Dish
Nothing to report
ICONZ TO RESELL IPSTAR
Thai Satellite Now Live in NZ
Thaicom's IPStar satellite system, launched last year in Australia through a partnership with Telstra's Reach joint venture, is now delivering services in New Zealand.
National IT services provider Iconz is to resell IPStar services as part of a plan to extend access in remote regions. General manager Sean Weekes told CommsWorld there is “a significant number of customer who are unable to get Internet connectivity” except for traditional dialup services.
“We see the IPstar satellite connectivity as a chance to deliver services to them,” he said.
Satellite Internet access has been available in NZ previously, he said, but at prohibitive prices even for business customers. The IPstar services, which the New Zealand Herald reported to cost typically around $NZ1,000 per month, equate to “around the same price as a frame service,” Weekes said.
While this might still put broadband beyond the reach of the casual surfer, Weekes believes it's competitive enough to make this “the right time to provide the services”.
The entry level IPStar service, he said, will be configured as a 128K bps downstream/64K bps upstream connection, with extra capacity in both directions sold in 64K bps increments. Already, he said, some customers have been trialling the service for applications such as videoconferencing, and have begun experimenting with different bandwidth combinations to suit their own requirements.
The two customer segments likely to seek the service at launch will be schools, who are receiving various forms of government support under an NZ plan to propagate broadband throughout the education sector in New Zealand, and regional farming co-operative companies who have been unable to get any kind of broadband connection because of their remote location.
“There's a number of these farming operations they can get services, but they can't get broadband.
“And within New Zealand there's a government push to provide schools and rural communities with broadband services.”
Customers already trialling the service are receiving free connectivity at the moment, with Weekes telling CommsWorld the official launch of billed services is due to start on July 1. He said IPstar has negotiated a flexible arrangement with Iconz, such that the service only needs between 40 and 50 customers to make it viable.
IPStar Quick Facts
Owner: Shin Satellite's Thaicom
Footprint: Asia, Australia, New Zealand
IPstar uses a large number of “cellular”-style antenna footprints to deliver its broadband services. The company says this re-use of its spectrum helps drive down the cost of its broadband services to around one-third that of conventional satellite data services. Services are sold through reseller agreements in various territories.
(Craigs comment,they have the facts mixed up Ipstar has not even launched yet! the trial service is running on I804 at 176E NZ spot beam)
Sky signs up to show best of 'Holmes' at weekends
As well as screening news from TV3 and a variety of international sources, Sky Television has acquired the rights to screen TV One's Holmes on the weekends.
Holmes will continue to screen on weeknights at 7pm on TV One, but the subscriber channel will show highlights from the week's programmes on Saturdays at 3.30pm and Sundays at 10.30pm, starting in August.
Sky already repeats TV3 news nightly at 8.30 and provides a weekend wrap-up, but TV3 managing director Rick Friesen said the Holmes deal did not conflict with its arrangement.
"Sky News has a good relationship with us and we will continue to have a good relationship with them," he said.
"Neither party suggested it would be an exclusive relationship."
Sky News Australia New Zealand, which negotiated the deal, has also become an affiliate of ABC America.
This means it has increased its access to ABC news and current affairs programmes, including adding 20/20 and Nightline with Ted Koppel.
"We're very happy to add more programming to our ... channel line-up," said Sky's director of communications, Tony O'Brien.
The ABC deal is an addition to Sky's international partnerships with BSkyB, CBS, Reuters, APTN, Bloomberg, Star TV as well as Australia's Nine and Seven Networks.
Sky News will send a team of reporters to cover the Olympics in Athens in August.
Media, telco married
AUSTRALIA looks set to have its first converged media and telco group - SP Telemedia - but its chief executive does not expect the combined group to revolutionise either industry overnight.
Shareholders in Washington H Soul Pattinson and its 54.2 per cent-owned regional telco SP Telecoms yesterday approved WHSP's $145million sale of its wholly owned Newcastle TV station NBN-9 to SP Telecoms.
The WHSP meeting lasted less than two minutes, prompting chairman Rob Millner to apologise for gathering shareholders in Sydney for such a short meeting.
Of the 76.1 per cent of owners who could vote on the deal, 67.7 per cent voted in favour.
Earlier, a meeting of SP Telecom's shareholders in Newcastle approved the deal.
It is now only subject to the completion of a $80million rights issue by SP to partly fund the transaction.
Denis Ledbury, head of the new combined group - which has been renamed SP Telemedia - said the company was now a broadcaster, telecommunications provider and content creator.
But he does not plan to use his expanded asset base to launch new services until determining what will have consumer appeal. "A few of the telco operators came undone by building infrastructure and hoping the consumers would come - and they didn't," he said.
Mr Ledbury said SP Telemedia now had the assets to "play a part in whatever comes along in the media world in the future".
"So all the pieces of the jigsaw are now there, but it ends up being really what the consumer wants.
"And at the end of the day it would be a big mistake to jump the gun by making those assumptions," he said.
Mr Ledbury said SP Telemedia had an advantage, as it now had options on how to deliver its content.
Apart from the TV station and its broadband telco network, SP also has a satellite uplink centre (it already distributes the ABC's TV services across the Asia-Pacific) and a large program storage system.
Mr Ledbury said he believed video-on-demand would be quickly adopted by consumers, but "it's just a matter of how that comes about".
PANAMSAT NAMED ‘BEST SATELLITE OPERATOR’ IN ASIA AS IT CELEBRATES ITS TENTH YEAR IN THE REGION AT COMMUNICASIA 2004
From Press Release (Edited)
Company to Highlight NHK Agreement, Launch PanAmSat On-Demand Asia
SINGAPORE, June 15, 2004 -- PanAmSat Booth -- #2K2-01 - Hall 2
PanAmSat Corporation (NASDAQ: SPOT) celebrates its tenth year in the Asia-Pacific market at CommunicAsia 2004, being held from June 15 to June 18, 2004 at the Singapore Convention Center in Singapore. Named best satellite operator in the region by Telecom Asia magazine, PanAmSat will highlight its regional milestones and herald new achievements at this year’s show.
“As the Company enters its second decade in the Asia-Pacific marketplace, PanAmSat continues to be recognized as the best satellite operator by customers, partners and now officially by the industry,” said Mike Antonovich, executive vice president for global sales and marketing, PanAmSat. “By developing value-added, end-to-end solutions, extending our global network and building new agreements with key customers in the region, we continue to demonstrate our leadership. Most importantly we continue to improve the ways we service our customers on every continent with solutions that transmit broadcast programming, worldwide breaking news and critical business data anywhere, anytime.”
During the show, PanAmSat will highlight various recent programs and achievements in the region, including:
• NHK Agreement: PanAmSat entered into an agreement with Japan Broadcasting Corporation, NHK, to deliver live high-definition (HD) sporting events and breaking news via the company’s global hybrid satellite and fiber network.
• Best Satellite Operator Award: PanAmSat was just awarded “Best Satellite Operator” of 2004 by Telecom Asia magazine. Judged by the Yankee Group and a panel of experts, the award was presented on the basis of financial performance, market leadership, technology innovation and corporate governance.
• PanAmSat On-Demand Asia: PanAmSat On-Demand Asia, is a satellite bandwidth on-demand service specifically tailored for the Asia-Pacific market. Facilitating the lowering of bandwidth costs, the product provides customers with the flexibility to pay for and utilize the satellite capacity on a per-usage basis.
• ST Teleport Strategic Alliance: PanAmSat signed a new fiber interconnectivity agreement with ST Teleport, a leading full-service satellite communications solution provider based in Singapore. The agreement extends the reach of the PanAmSat global network from Singapore to California, increasing the Company’s ability to deliver its customers’ programming via satellite and fiber to and from the Asia-Pacific and North American regions.
PanAmSat began operations in the Asia-Pacific region with the launch of the PAS-2 satellite in 1994. Today, operating a hybrid network of fiber and five high-powered satellites in orbit over Asia, PanAmSat is able to offer a wide range of services for businesses and events in the Asia-Pacific region. Customers in the Asia-Pacific region include NHK, China Central Television (CCTV), Doordarshan, Korea Broadcasting System, Arirang TV, ABS/CBN, TVB, NicNet and Telstra. The Company has provided a full-range of program distribution services including live worldwide transmission of special events such as the 2000 summer games in Sydney, Australia, and more recently the 2002 FIFA World Cup from Japan and Korea.
PANAMSAT SATELLITE/FIBER NETWORK SHOWCASES HD DELIVERY FOR INTERNATIONAL CUSTOMER
From Press Release (Edited)
Japan’s NHK Uses Unique Hybrid Solution to Transmit Live Sports and Breaking News in HD
WILTON, CT, June 15, 2004 -- PanAmSat Corporation (NASDAQ:SPOT) announced today that it had signed an agreement with Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK) to deliver live sporting events and breaking news in high-definition (HD) format via the company’s worldwide satellite and fiber network.
“A sole public broadcaster in its native Japan, NHK is utilizing the PanAmSat satellite/fiber solution for the efficient and reliable delivery of its HD programming,” said Joe Wright, president and CEO, PanAmSat. “PanAmSat now can also monitor and support HD broadcast services through its state-of-the-art teleport, advanced fiber network and HD-ready satellites. By leveraging these key elements, PanAmSat provides NHK the answer to its U.S. domestic transmission needs.”
NHK will uplink news and sporting events across the U.S. via mobile satellite news gathering (SNG) vehicles to PanAmSat’s domestic satellite fleet. The high-definition signals will then be downlinked to the company’s Atlanta teleport, where recently installed HDTV equipment will allow PanAmSat engineers to monitor the programming content for quality assuredness. PanAmSat will then provide the terrestrial fiber link to reach NHK’s U.S. gateway in New York City.
NHK, a 50-year television veteran, has made a commitment to produce all its programming in HD format. All original NHK programming transmitted to Japan will be sent in high-definition format for broadcast on their terrestrial, cable and DTH platforms. Events including Major League Baseball and the U.S. presidential election are among the many that PanAmSat will deliver in HD to NHK's U.S. gateway in New York.
PANAMSAT EXTENDS ITS GLOBAL HYBRID NETWORK THRU FIBER AGREEMENT WITH ST TELEPORT
From Press Release (Edited)
Two Additional Fiber Links Between Singapore and the United States Enhance PanAmSat’s Hybrid Solution for International Broadcasters
SINGAPORE, June 15, 2004 -- PanAmSat Corporation (NASDAQ: SPOT) today announced the signing of a fiber interconnectivity agreement with ST Teleport, a leading full-service satellite communications solution provider based in Singapore. The recently signed agreement extends the reach of the PanAmSat global network from Singapore to California increasing the Company’s ability to deliver its customers’ programming via satellite and fiber to and from the Asia-Pacific and North American regions.
“PanAmSat’s alliance with ST Teleport substantially boosts our already extensive footprint by directly connecting the Asia-Pacific and Indian Ocean regions to the United States for the seamless exchange of international programming,” said Mike Antonovich, executive vice president for global sales and marketing, PanAmSat. “PanAmSat’s ability to customize and optimize our satellite and fiber network is a prime example of how we work to find the best solution possible for our customers as well as improve service and reliability.”
ST Teleport owns and operates a technical facility in Singapore with existing ties to PanAmSat’s Pacific Ocean region and Indian Ocean region satellites which are: PAS-2, PAS-4, PAS-7, PAS-8 and PAS-10. PanAmSat’s customers are now able to utilize the fiber between Singapore and Los Angeles, with an additional link between Los Angeles and PanAmSat’s Napa, California teleport.
“ST Teleport is excited to be a part of PanAmSat’s global satellite and fiber network,” said Way Kiat Wee, managing director of ST Teleport. “Customers today demand high-quality cost-effective delivery of their content on a global basis. This alliance enables ST Teleport to fulfill such demands by leveraging on the synergies created through this strategic relationship.”
The network extension from Singapore offers customers an alternative as well as a more direct route for the distribution of content to the 10,000 U.S. cable headends that receive programming via PanAmSat. And, with programming transported from PanAmSat’s teleport in Napa to the ST Teleport in Singapore by transpacific fiber, broadcasters and cable operators in the U.S. will gain improved access to PanAmSat satellites in the Pacific Ocean and Indian Ocean regions. This greater ease of access allows international broadcasters to more easily use PanAmSat’s global network as a platform for the distribution of ethnic programming including sports, news and entertainment.
About ST Teleport
ST Teleport, a wholly owned subsidiary of Singapore Technologies Telemedia, is a full-service satellite solution provider that connects businesses and distributes video content seamlessly and reliably through a diverse network of major satellite systems, terrestrial network infrastructures and Internet exchanges. ST Teleport, through its Earth Station Complex in Singapore with more than 20 satellite antennae, serves Asia’s broadcasting, telecommunications and corporate markets, supporting television networks and providing satellite communications and value-added services. Services include satellite uplink/ downlink, programme origination, satellite news gathering, international gateway, regional VSAT, IP Multicast, and other broadcast services. For more information, visit www.STTeleport.com.
Internet TV brings opportunity
Hong Yan, a graduate college student in Beijing, is a TV enthusiast.
At eight o'clock every evening she watches a popular Beijing TV romance programme.
But what makes her different from other viewers is that she sits in front of a computer instead of a TV set.
Internet TV, which allows users to watch TV programmes through software, is attracting more and more operators. It may mark the real beginning of the convergence of TV, telecommunications and Internet networks in China.
When Li Tao started the first Internet TV channel Chinatvfm three years ago, he did not expect that it would take so long for Internet TV to make a real start in the world's biggest TV market.
In recent years, more operators launched Internet TV services, but most were free of charge and on a small scale. The majority of content on these services did not have proper copyright licensing.
A real breakthrough came with the entry of China Central Television (CCTV), the dominant State TV agency.
Zhao Huayong, CCTV president, said on the opening of CCTV's Internet TV channel on May 31: "According to the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT), 2004 is the year of network development. So the provision of audio and visual programmes on the Internet has become one of our core works and we will spare no effort to develop the Internet TV business this year."
The service will be open to Beijing users of China Netcom's broadband network, one of two fixed-line telecommunications operators along with China Telecom, from May 31.
It will be expanded to Shanghai and Tianjin municipalities, and Guangdong, Jiangsu, Sichuan and Shandong provinces in the second half of the year through co-operation with China Netcom and China Telecom.
Subscribers can watch 12 channels of TV programmes on the Internet free of charge from May 31 to July 20. From then on, they need to pay 30 yuan (US$3.60) a month to watch selected CCTV programmes on the Internet.
Shanghai Media Group (SMG), the second largest TV group after CCTV, also signed a memorandum of understanding on June 6 with the Shanghai and Jiangsu branches of China Mobile, the largest mobile telecom operator in the world, to broadcast TV programmes to mobile phone subscribers on the two companies' high-speed GPRS (general packet radio service) network.
Phone users can watch programmes from SMG TV channels, including TV series, business, sports and entertainment news.
Zhang Dazhong, assistant president of SMG, said: "Broadcasting of content from our current TV resources is only the first step for us. We will launch more tailored programmes for broadband and mobile phone users in the future, to transform us into all-round content providers, instead of only focusing on the TV broadcasting platform."
Zhang said his company will extend similar co-operation to China Telecom and China Netcom on their broadband platforms later.
While TV groups move to broadband telecom networks to broadcast their programmes, telecom operators are also expanding their influence into the territory of Internet TV.
Tiantian Online, in which China Netcom is the biggest stakeholder, said on May 27 in Beijing that it had won approval to broadcast audio-visual programmes on the Internet from SARFT. This makes Tiantian Online the only telecom operator among 66 providers allowed to conduct Internet TV business.
Chinese Internet companies, which have grown up in a competitive market environment and have the advantage of existing user bases, are also warming up for Internet TV.
Sina Corp built up its online audio-visual content resources three years ago by acquiring stakes in Hong Kong-based TV broadcaster Sun Media Group Limited. Recently Sina launched an online audio-visual channel and began to offer TV programmes from Travel Satellite TV in Beijing and Southeast Satellite TV in East China's Fujian Province.
The NASDAQ-listed Sina, China's biggest Internet portal, also formed a partnership with the State Sports General Administration's China Interactive Sports to conduct online audio-video reports from the coming Olympics Games in Athens.
Since CCTV is the only TV broadcaster in China with the right to broadcast the Olympics live, Sina and China Interactive Sports' online interviews with Chinese champions are very attractive to other Chinese TV broadcasters.
Sina CEO Wang Yan said more than 30 TV broadcasters had already signed agreements to broadcast the companies' video reports on their channels.
Influence of the market
The emergence of Internet TV has been hailed as a strong push by market forces towards the convergence of telecom, broadcasting and Internet networks in China.
"In the future, telecom and broadcasting networks will be unified and both telecom operators and broadcasters will provide each other's businesses," said Zhou Hongduo, director of the Media Economy Research Centre at the Beijing Broadcasting Institute.
According to a 1999 State Council regulation, neither telecom nor broadcasting operators should penetrate into the other's territory.
The Chinese Government has been intending to promote the convergence of telecom, broadcasting and Internet networks to improve efficiency and avoid repetitive construction. But the two sides have tried to exclude each other from their monopolized business, claiming convergence may endanger national communications security to Chinese people.
However, commercial interest in the broadband network has drawn the two sides together.
"The future network will be ubiquitous. But the TV broadcasting network is limited, since it relies on TV sets, so co-operation with telecom operators will help solve this problem," Zhou said.
According to the official China Internet Network Information Centre (CNNIC), the number of broadband users in China almost quadrupled to 17.4 million in 2003 from 4.6 million in 2002.
Henry Yang, president of the market research firm Shanghai iResearch Co Ltd, believed the growth in broadband users has greatly stimulated the demand for movies and TV programmes on the Internet.
A recent report on the online movie and TV market from iResearch said the number of people watching these programmes online reached 13 million in 2003.
The broadband population is expected to further grow to 33.8 million this year, and 63.5 million next year.
Yang predicted Internet TV will lead to unprecedented co-operation between market participants. Telecom operators will provide bandwidth resources and users, TV broadcasters will provide programmes, and Internet companies their experience in running portals.
(Craigs comment, Apsattv will be launching an Online broadband TV section soon!)
News Corp. to Stop Airing Fox News in Japan
June 16 (Bloomberg) -- News Corp. will stop airing its U.S.- based Fox News Channel in Japan at the end of July because of low subscriptions, Nikkei English News reported.
News Corp., which airs the channel in Japan through satellite broadcaster Sky Perfect Communications Inc., is concerned that subscriptions in the country for Fox News won't grow enough to generate a suitable profit, the Nikkei said, without citing anyone.
News Corp. will continue broadcasting the Fox network and the National Geographic Channel in Japan.
Fox was ranked last among the four major U.S. networks in the past season until its top-rated show, ``American Idol,'' returned to the air in January.
Court rules mere ownership of piracy device not illegal
LOS ANGELES -- A federal appeals court Tuesday affirmed a lower court finding that satellite television provider DirecTV could not sue a Florida man for simply possessing equipment that could be used to pirate its signals.
The 11th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals in Atlanta upheld the ruling of a Florida federal judge who dismissed a complaint against Mike Treworgy, who purchased two devices from a California mail order company.
The devices are commonly used to bypass anti-piracy technology in set-top boxes and allow the user to receive the satellite signal at no cost.
Treworgy moved to dismiss the complaint on the grounds that the federal Wiretap Act did not create a private right of action against a person for merely possessing such a device.
The case will be remanded to federal court where the case will proceed on other charges that Treworgy used the devices to pirate the DirecTV signal.
In a separate matter Tuesday, DirecTV agreed to modify an aggressive campaign it has been waging against people who bought devices capable of pirating its signal.
The Electronic Frontier Foundation and the Center for Internet and Society Cyberlaw Clinic had asked DirecTV to stop prosecuting people for possessing devices that could be used for other purposes, including computer security and scientific research, the groups said.
DirecTV has agreed to modify the letters it sends to people who have bought such devices to make it clear they will not be prosecuted if they bought the device for purposes other than piracy.
"All verified claims of innocence will be investigated," DirecTV spokesman Robert Mercer said Tuesday. "The letters will be more explicit in telling people what they need to do if they believe they have a 'multiple use' device."
Mercer said cases already brought against people who failed to respond to previous demand letters will be pursued.
"The vast majority of these devices are used to steal DirecTV programming," Mercer said.
Zee's Dish TV shifting to NSS-6 from Insat in July
NEW DELHI: Zee Telefilms and ASC Enterprise-promoted Dish TV, India's first KU-band DTH televisions service, will hop on to NSS-6 from an Insat satellite in July.
The change in the satellite will be done simultaneously with the addition of more channels to the service, bringing the total number of channels on offer to 84.
Speaking to indiantelevision.com, a senior executive of the Subhash Chandra-promoted Zee Telefilms said, "To increase the channel offering, we needed more transponder capacity that was not available with Isro (Indian Space Research Organisation). So, we were advised to go on to NSS-6."
Isro, a government organisation that manages operation and transponder lease of Insat series of satellites, has also undertaken a similar deal with the Europe-based NewSky Satellite for transponder space for Indian pubcaster Doordarshan's proposed KU-band DTH service.
Dish TV, which unveiled ESPN and Star Sports some months back on the platform, has already added a few channels to its stable since then, like Trace from MCM and Euro Sports. Media reports have also quoted Sony Entertainment Television India executives saying that negotiations are on with Zee for Sony channels to join the Dish TV platform.
In addition, with the increased number of offerings, Dish TV is in the process of finalising a pricing structure for various tiers of service for the service. The subscription fee for the basic tier of DTH service would be kept around Rs 100 (approximately $2.5).
The Zee executive said that as the channels and value-added services increase, there has to be different pricing for various tiers as one single price would not make the business commercially viable.
"The various price structures are being worked out and would be put in place in the next quarter," the Zee executive said.
Dish TV claims to have got 140,000 DTH boxes out in the market, but this need not necessarily mean that the total number of subscribers would also be the same.
Gearing up for impending competition from the proposed Tata-Star combine DTH service, Dish TV is looking at doing some value additions to the service. One such service being looked at is high-speed Internet connections through satellite to a DTH subscriber, which would come at a cost. The Internet service is likely to be introduced in the last quarter of 2004.
Incidentally, ASC Enterprise, a Subhash Chandra-promoted company that holds the licence for DTH service in the country, has dropped its plan to put into orbit a customised satellite. The satellite project was being implemented by an ASC subsidiary, Agrani Satellite Services Ltd. The plan now is to buy off the shelf an existing and orbiting satellite.
Dish TV is a venture of Essel Group, promoted by Chandra. The group's business interests include media programming, broadcasting and distribution, packaging, entertainment, online gaming and telecom, all of which are undertaken in close synergies with Zee Telefilms, Siticable, Playwin, E-city, Esselworld, Intrex, Cyquator, Essel Propack and ITZ Cash Card.
EuropeStar Seeks Bigger Footprint In The Indian Market
LONDON: Alcatel-owned EuropeStar, a seller of transponder capacity for Internet, broadcast and other applications, is in discussions with major television broadcasters in India to ramp up its client base in anticipation of closure on the conditional access system (CAS) this year.
While the company, through its major client DataAccess, plies primarily in the Internet space in India currently, it is looking to increase its presence in broadcast of television and radio in the country. Currently, about a third of its total business is either directly or indirectly from India. Its team in India will also be reinforced if a large direct-to-home project comes its way.
“We are basically interested in entering three business areas in India direct-to-home (DTH), for which we are in discussion with companies in India,” EuropeStar general manager David Chegnion told FE.
“What we are also very keen on for the India market is occasional use - this market is opening up well in India. It involves selling our transponder capacity on an occasional basis. For example, BBC covered the Indian elections using our capacity, and World Cup cricket between India and South Africa was broadcast through our services. The Indian market is huge and we hope it continues to open up.”
Currently, up-linking in India is permitted only on C-band satellites. However, EuropeStar I, the satellite that covers the Indian subcontinental region, functions on the Ku-band.
“The real question to be answered is when Ku-band uplinking will be allowed, after which VSAT applications can be introduced in this potentially huge market,” said Mr Chegnion.
Currently all uplinking in India has to be routed through through INSAT, a law that companies like EuropeStar hope will be reworked to allow other satellites to provide uplinking from India.
BT Broadcast, ASCEL pact to provide teleport services to Zee Network
BT Broadcast Services (BTBS), the broadcast and media solutions arm of BT, has entered into an agreement with Subhash Chandra-promoted ASC Enterprises Ltd (ASCEL), a teleport and satellite services company, to provide space segment and teleport services for the Zee Network, especially for the US and the UK markets.
The channels of the Zee Network, which were earlier being uplinked from the Essel Shyam platform, will now be uplinked from ASCEL's own teleport at NOIDA, near Delhi. However, BTBS will enable the various channels to reach out to European and the US markets through direct-to-home (DTH) and cable. BTBS will provide 24-hour control and monitoring service by means of its International Media Centre (IMC).
According to Mr Jawahar Goel, Additional Vice-Chairman, Essel Group, "The Zee Network is undergoing significant distribution expansion of its international channels. Because of BTBS' global infrastructure, we will be able to transmit channels on demand to a bigger audience that ever before." He said that this would improve the penetration of the Zee channels in the western markets.
Mr Mark Smith, Managing Director, BTBS added, "BTBS is able to provide ASCEL and the Zee Network with a worldwide global network solution uniquely tailored and customised to meet its specific needs. The contract represents a major strategic and commercial development for BTBS establishing strong market presence and proven success in the delivery of broadcast and teleport services."
Pakistan's first business news channel to launch in July
MUMBAI: Pakistan will soon see the launch of it’s first satellite based 24-hour business news channel - Business Plus. Local and international business news, with a special focus on South Asia and the Middle East regions, is the channel's stated areas of coverage. Business Plus, which is scheduled to launch in the first week of July, will be headed by Fazeel Asif Jah.
Business Plus will operate under Total Media Limited, which is a venture promoted Pakistani telecom major WorldCall Telecommunications Group Ltd. WorldCall has only recently entered the media arena and has plans to launch two to three other channels besides Business Plus, Asif Jah told indiantelevision.com over the phone from Pakistan. $ 3 million is the initial investment being pumped into Business Plus, Asif Jah said.
The company's BoD comprises WorldCall, Pakistan Kuwait Investment Company Pvt. Ltd, DDP Gulf Promo Action chairman and CEO Najam Mahmood Khawaja and Lahore Stock Exchange chairman Syed Asim Zaffar.
The channel will be uplinked from Pak Sat 1 and will offer a comprehensive coverage of Pakistan’s financial markets, corporations, small and medium enterprises, investment opportunities and will also focus on the professionals who are taking Pakistani businesses to new heights, says Asif Jah. Other Pakistani channels that are also uplinked from Pak Sat 1 are VU1, VU2 and Mashraq TV.
Live satellite chat tonight 9pm NZ and 8.30pm Syd time onwards.
Pas 8 Tas mux is fta including Zchannel wrestling and Videoland movies. Some receivers may have trouble on this mux.
Satfacts June issue contains, "Fta nearly 300 channels in Aus/NZ" a full scan of the cband arc. AMC 10 reception in NZ, DVB T reception and more.
For Sky NZ subscribers all the movie channels are free all week as a teaser to encourage people to upgrade. I took a look last night and not one of the 4 movies channels had anything worth watching.
From my Emails & ICQ
A bit of general info.....
Sexz TV broadcast has been suspended. The length of this suspension is indefinite while talks are carried out with potential investors or buyers.
Sexz TV is unable to continue paying for broadcast costs to keep the stream online because of unexpected weak sales. All broadcasters have found it very hard to continue in the current market and unfortunately Sexz TV's pockets were not the deepest.
Sexz TV can be saved by consistent card sales, investment or ultimately by being purchased outright. If you or your friends may be interested to becoming a partner or helping to strengthen sales please email.
Talks with potential buyers and investors will continue and we will notify you of progress.
We apologise for the delay of sending this notice but we had expected to have the problem sorted quicker than now.
Thank you for your patience in this matter.
(Craigs comment,as I said from the start keep your money and hands in your pockets.)
From Jon C (Thailand)
Asia DX'er help required
I need a bit of help identifing this satellite I have found on a blind search please.
I can not find these TP's listed anywhere;
1 Tv Channel called "DPC"
Vid PID: 300
Aud PID: 8191
PCR PID: 300
1 Radio Channel called "satstudy"
Aud PID: 8191
TTX PID: 200
PCR PID: 100
Then I also found two radio channels on;
Radio channel (looks like chinese - !A1/4 etc etc)
Radio Channel - BLANK
From the Dish
Pas 8 166E 4080 V This mux FTA at the moment
Talk of fourth network
OPPOSITION communications spokesman Lindsay Tanner has become the latest critic of the poor uptake of free-to-air digital TV, saying a fourth TV network may be needed to convert more people to the new technology.
Mr Tanner's comment follows broadcasting expert Stuart Simson's suggestion the Government spend $500million subsidising the cost of the set-top boxes needed to process the digital TV signal, and Ten's TV chief John McAlpine admitting a fourth digital-only TV network could improve digital TV uptake.
Unlike pay-TV groups Foxtel and Austar, which introduced new services when they switched to digital three months ago, the Ten, Nine and Seven networks have produced little new content needed to persuade consumers to switch to digital.
The commercial TV networks, who hope people will buy the boxes to see clearer TV pictures, have so far switched just over 340,000 homes to digital in three-and-a-half years.
But since March, pay-TV has converted more than 400,000 subscribers to digital.
But Mr Tanner said the need to kick-start free-to-air digital TV conversion would be a major issue, no matter who won the next election.
"The transition to digital TV has pretty much stalled," he told Business Sunday.
"We're using vast amounts of capital to beam a digital signal into somewhere between 3 and 5 per cent of Australian households. That's incredibly wasteful. One possible scenario is more competition -- a fourth network."
The Government has disallowed a new TV channel before 2007, but a review is now part of a broader stocktake of the free-to-air digital TV legislation this year.
Mr Tanner said digital TV had to be kicked along as "there's huge sums of money that have been invested that are effectively being wasted".
Mr Simson, a co-leader of the Productivity Commission's 2000 inquiry into broadcasting policy, said digital TV had the potential to allow new players and services to be delivered through TV sets.
"This magnificent opportunity is passing Australia by," he said.
Mr McAlpine agreed a new digital-only TV network could boost free-to-air digital TV conversion, but at a cost.
"More money will be going to Los Angeles than Melbourne or Sydney (as competition grows for new programming) and we don't think that's just," he said.
He instead suggested the Government force TV makers to include a digital TV receiver in all new TV sets.
Mr Tanner said the outcome on the fourth TV network would also determine if Labor changes its opposition to the cross-media rules which prevent dual ownership of TV and newspapers, or TV and radio.
"If you don't know how many TV networks we're going to have and, therefore how many TV owners, then it's a bit hard to know what the shape of cross-media ownership issues should look like," he said.
Ten, Nine and Seven last week began campaigning against the introduction of a new TV network, saying it would reduce the quality of existing TV services.
Baghdad and the bush
Multimedia VSAT / Wireless Loop Topology.
A Melbourne company bringing broadband to the Australian bush has sold the same satellite network to international agencies rebuilding battle-scarred Iraq.
Since its Middle East broadband satellite service started in January, ASX-listed Multiemedia's network of users has grown to 100 sites in Iraq.
Those using the two-way NewSat network in Iraq include the US Department of Defence, and power, utilities and construction companies involved in the post-war reconstruction effort, as well as internet cafes open to Iraqi residents.
The move into Iraq and the Middle East was sparked by the signing of a multimillion-dollar deal with the United States Agency for International Development following a trade fair in Dubai late last year.
The service is administered from the company's teleport communications hub in Newcastle, NSW, and support provided via a Melbourne-based network operations centre. The network is used elsewhere in Australia and neighbouring countries such as East Timor.
Although designed for big business and government, the NewSat two-way satellite broadband service that transfers from one to 60 megabits per second links Australian communities from the Whitsundays to Griffith in NSW and the Riverland region around Renmark in South Australia.
Plans include extending to the Victorian coastal resort of Mallacoota, and Tasmania.
The network uses the $988 million NSS-6 geostationary satellite - one of six launched by the Netherlands-based satellite provider NewSkies - slightly west of Singapore on the equator.
"Our position obviously is to demand very, very large transponder space on the satellite (and) repackage that in a commercial user model with the appropriate applications to go with it," NewSat managing director Adrian Ballintine says.
"The (regional town) model itself uses a substantial amount of bandwidth because of the number of connections that apply to each town."
NewSat's Australian commercial users include 700 Woolworths stores and the Seventh Day Adventist church. Overseas users range from the Iranian embassy in Kabul through to mining company Placer Dome in Papua New Guinea and British Aerospace in East Timor.
Along with the satellite service, the company also provides applications to run over it, including video-conferencing and voice over IP (VoIP). They are also looking at providing a suite of Microsoft applications to those using the network for a monthly subscription fee.
Warren Ingerson, a director at Adelaide-based reseller Australian Private Networks, involved in the SA regional service, says older satellite technologies are fine "if you just want to do a bit of internet surfing".
But for "corporations where you've got data, internet, telephony, video-conferencing, the old technology means you have to have three or four networks. With the new satellite, you can pack it all up in the one network," Ingerson says.
280 million Chinese farmers to get TV for first time
Some 280 Chinese farmers are on the verge of getting access to television for the first time, with a new-generation satellite system going into operation in 2006, a report said Monday.
Two satellites for radio and television broadcasting will be launched before the end of 2006, giving vast tracts of the country access to state-run TV programming, the Xinhua news agency said
One of the satellites will be manufactured by China Satcom and the other by Alcatel Space, a wholly-owned subsidiary of satellite giant Alcatel, after the companies inked a contract to design and produce the equipment.
Chinasat 9, which is scheduled to be launched atop a Long March 3B carrier rocket, will enable 97 percent of Chinese residents to receive satellite broadcasting signals with the help of an antenna.
However, they still will not be able to watch foreign programs such as CNN and BBC which are restricted to diplomatic compounds, top hotels and some office buildings.
China has hundreds of television stations, with China Central Television the dominant network.
Alcatel reinforces cooperation with China with DTH satellite
Alcatel has signed a contract with China Satellite Communication (Chinasat).
As per this the French communications solutions provider will design and produce a new-generation communications satellite, Chinasat 9.
This direct broadcasting satellite will enable Chinasat to be the first state-owned Chinese company to provide satellite broadcast services in China.
The Chinasat 9 satellite, based on the Spacebus 4000 C1 platform, will be fitted with 22 active Ku-band transponders for broadcast satellite services (BSS), including eighteen 36-MHz and four 54-MHz channels. Chinasat 9 will weigh about 4,500 kilograms at liftoff and offer life power of about 11 kW. Positioned at 92.2 degrees East (or 134 degrees East), it will offer a design life of more than 15 years.
The satellite will be launched by a Chinese Long March rocket. Alcatel's subsidiary Alcatel Space will be in charge of the launch campaign, orbital positioning, in-orbit tests and the delivery of a satellite simulator.
The cooperation between Alcatel and Chinese satellites operators began in 1984 with the supply of subassemblies for Chinasat 1. Then Alcatel delivered the Sinosat 1 satellite in 1998. Now there is the upcoming Apstar VI satellite.
Alcatel Space claims to be the world's third largest satellite manufacturer.
Loral Skynet Extends Agreement to Distribute HBO Asia on Telstar 10
From Press Release (Edited)
BEDMINSTER, N.J., June 14 /PRNewswire/ -- Loral Skynet today announced that it has renewed an agreement with HBO Pacific Partners, V.O.F., to distribute the region's leading entertainment channels, HBO and Cinemax, across Asia through its television arm HBO Asia. In accordance with the long- term agreement, Loral's Telstar 10 satellite will continue to distribute HBO Asia's programming to thousands of cable outlets across Asia.
"We welcome this significant service renewal by HBO for the distribution of quality video broadcast services to its audiences in Asia," said Terry Hart, president, Loral Skynet. "Telstar 10 hosts a robust video neighborhood over Asia, attracting the region's top programmers and when Telstar 18 joins the fleet in the next few weeks, Loral's extensive coverage of Asia will stretch from Europe to Australia and Hawaii."
Singapore-based HBO Asia brings the best of Hollywood to Asia through its exclusive first-run licensing deals with major Hollywood studios including Columbia Tri/Star, DreamWorks, Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios and Warner Bros. In addition to proprietary and award-winning HBO Original programming produced exclusively for its viewers, HBO Asia works with a number of prominent independent studios to secure exclusive rights to a host of quality movies. HBO Pacific Partners, V.O.F. is a joint venture of media giants Paramount Films, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Time Warner and Universal Studios.
Launched in 1997, Telstar 10 is located at 76.5 degrees East longitude and carries 27 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponders (36 MHz equivalents). The C- band payload provides coverage of Asia, Australia, parts of Europe and Africa. The Ku-band payload covers Korea, Taiwan, Macau and China, including Hong Kong. Telstar 10, which hosts one of the most extensive cable neighborhoods in Asia, distributes cable TV programming, direct-to-home services, and telecommunications, as well as Internet and VSAT (very small aperture terminal) services.
Joining Telstar 10 over Asia will be Telstar 18, set to launch aboard a Sea Launch rocket late this month. Telstar 18, which will be located at 138 degrees East longitude, is equipped with 19 C-band transponders at 36 MHz and 8 Ku-band transponders at 54 MHz. The C-band covers Asia, Australia, New Zealand, the Pacific islands and Hawaii and the Ku-band reaches China, India, Taiwan, Hong Kong and Korea. Its main markets will be cable programming, direct-to-home broadcasting, Internet, VSAT, and IP-based two-way services within Asia while providing an inter-connect to the US.
(Craigs comment, also known by its old name Apstar2R)
Zee's Telugu channel likely in August
AFTER the foray into the regional television market in the North and East under the Alpha basket, Zee Network is making inroads into the South by launching a channel in Telugu.
The channel, Alpha Telugu, is all set to come up in August. "This is in line with our plans to cater to the huge regional television markets in the country," sources in the company told Business Line.
Mr Subhash Chandra, Chairman and Managing Director of Zee Telefilms Ltd, was in the city to oversee preparation work ahead of the launch.
At present Zee, the premier TV network, runs Alpha branded channels in Marathi, Bengali, Punjabi and Gujarati languages. While the first three channels were launched in 1999, Gujarati channel was launched in March 2000.
Like the other four Alpha bouquet channels, Telugu channel too would have a wide market thanks to the huge presence of expatriates in the West and Gulf, the sources said.
Very interesting, in mid March there were news items mentioning ABS-CBN wanted to expand in Europe, Australia and Canada. All 4 below channels look like a DTH mux. I saw this as well https://www.tfc-online.com/tfc/forms/survey/survey_dth-aus_home.asp
New Pas8 Filipino Ku mux on Australia beam
12575 Pol:H FEC:2/3 S/R:13845
This will be great if a new DTH service starts for Filipino's in Australia, It may not be good news for that other Australian Filipino channel provider though. Hopefully I will have more news on it tomorrow.
Bad luck for Euro 2004 viewers RCTI on Palapa C2 is encrypting during the Euro 2004 matches.
Keep looking around during the game checking various channels it may pop up where you least expect it to.Please report!
Tvguide for the new fta Star Utsav channel on Asiasat 3
From my Emails & ICQ
From Steve Hume
new pas8 ku
Provider: DiviCom Customer
ANC - Australia (PAL Bars) Video Format 704x576 4:3, 25 fps
Cinema1 - Nil
PCTV - Australia (PAL Bars) Format 704x576 4:3, 25 fps
TFC Australia (PAL Bars) Format 704x576 4:3, 25 fps
From Jon Clarke (Thailand)
Euro2004 - FTA & in English (Live NOW)
See Thaicom 2/3
A great feed from Burma..
Confirm Palapa C2 RCTI currently encrypted so FTA
boxes will not see it.. TV3 on Measat 1 C band is
playing the news, while the two vietnam TV stations
are playing the game in Vietnamese .. (VTV/HDTV) also
found on Measat 2 on the aisa FTA KU feed (VTV)
In Australia with access to TVE International , and waiting until 2 oclock
in the morning Australian Time, big surprise TVE did not telecast
Presentation event Euro cup, but did telecast game Portugal & Greece, but
the worsth and sad about it was after 30 minutes of game first half, TVE
STOP TRANSMITION OF TELECAST and instead of the game they switch it to an
old movie, and did not came back on the game, bad bad and unprofessional
V8 feeds reported on B3 during the weekend.
Optus B3 12452H Sr 6670
Optus B3 12442H Sr 6669
Palapa C2 3765, H, 5632, 3/4
also PAS 2
From the Dish
Weekly SatcoDX News 04 June 2004 - 11 June 2004
NSS 703 (57.0E)
WorldNet /C-Span on 4.055 (R,25994,1160,1120,1160): New TID
Alhurra on 4.055 (R,25994,1260,1232,1260): New TID
Department of State Dedicated Channel on 4.055 (R,25994,1460,1420,1460): New TID
VOA News Now / Music Mix (Mongolia) (IOR 3 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1132,1160): New TID
VOA News Now / Music Mix (E.Timor) (IOR 4 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1132,1160): It has started. Additional programmes in Indonesian /New TID
VOA (Mauritius/Madagascar) (IOR 5 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1130,1160): Also carries Hausa, French & Portuguese programming / New TID
Radio Free Europe (IOR 6 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1130,1160): New TID
Radio Free Iraq on 4.055 (R,25994,1132,1160): New TID
Radio Sawa Sudan (IOR 7 & 8) on 4.055 (R,25994,1132,1160): New TID
Radio Sawa Iraq (IOR 11 & 12) on 4.055 (R,25994,1222,1222): New TID
VOA News Now/Music Mix (South Iraq) (IOR 13 & 14) on 4.055 (R,25994,1230,1230): New TID
Radio Free Asia (IOR 17 & 18) on 4.055 (R,25994,1320,1160): New TID
Radio Free Asia (IOR 19 & 20) on 4.055 (R,25994,1322,1160): Replaced Voice of America /New TID
VOA (IOR 21 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1330,1160): New TID
VOA (IOR 22 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1330,1160): Also carries Hindi & Russian services. Replaced Radio Free Europe /New TID
VOA (IOR 23 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1332,1160): Programmes in various Asian languages /New TID
VOA (IOR 24 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1332,1160): Also carries Swahili, Amharic & English programming /New TID
VOA News Now/Music Mix (IOR 27 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1422,1160): Replaced VOA / Radio Liberty (Kabul) /New TID
RTVA (IOR 28 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1430,1160): Replaced VOA (Bangladesh) / VOA News Now /New TID
VOA (IOR 33 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1520,1160)
VOA (IOR 34 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1520,1160): Also carries Hindi, Urdu, Indonesian & Farsi programming /New TID
VOA / Radio Liberty (IOR 35 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1522,1160): New TID
VOA / Radio Liberty (IOR 36 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1522,1160): Also carries Khmer, Burmese & Bangladeshi programming /New TID
VOA/Radio Liberty (Kabul) (IOR29 - Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1430,1160): New TID
VOA News Now/Music Mix (Bang.Betar) (IOR30 - Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1432,1160): New TID
Radio Sawa Levant (IOR 31 & 32) on 4.055 (R,25994,1432,1160): New TID
VOA/Radio Liberty (IOR 37) (Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1530,1160): New TID
VOA/Radio Liberty (IOR 38) (Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1530,1160): New TID
Radio Liberty (IOR 39) (Left audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1532,1160): New TID
Radio Liberty (IOR 40) (Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1532,1160): Also carries Cantonese & English programmes /New TID
Radio Sawa Egypt (IOR 42) (Right audio) on 4.055 (R,25994,1620,1160): New TID
Radio Sawa Gulf (IOR 43 & 44) on 4.055 (R,25994,1622,1160): New TID
VOA / Music Mix (Djibouti) (IOR 45 & 46) on 4.055 (R,25994,1630,1160): Also carries French programmes /New TID
Radio Farda (IOR 47&48) on 4.055 (R,25994,1632,1160): New TID
Ch. 8 - OS Download (DCP) on 4.055 (R,25994,1160,1120,1160): New TID
Ch. 9 - OS Download (CCP) on 4.055 (R,25994,1160,1120,1160): New TID
PANAMSAT 7, 10 (68.5E)
Telly Track on 12.687 (V,3254,512,650,512): It's clear now
A copy of MAX International on 3.932 (H,19835,1660,1620,1660)
ARY UK on 3.863 (H,19850,513,660,8190): It has Started
ARY Middle East on 3.863 (H,19850,516,690,8190): It has started regular progam
ARY USA on 3.863 (H,19850,520,730,8190)
A copy of MAX International on 3.932 (H,19835,1660,1620,1660): It Has Started
Telly Track on 12.687 (V,3254,512,650,512): It's back encrypted
TELSTAR 10/APSTAR IIR (76.5E)
EHSN on 12.308 (V,22425,816,817,816): It's encrypted now
CHINASTAR 1 (87.5E)
Greatsports Channel on 3.848 (V,5632,308,256,8190): It's encrypted now
ST 1 (88.0E)
Rainbow on 3.632 (V,26666,1585,1569,1585): It's encrypted now
TTV on 12.642 (H,24000,33,36,33): It's encrypted
CTV on 12.642 (H,24000,102,103,102): It's encrypted
Formosa TV on 12.642 (H,24000,1163,1131,1163): It's encrypted
CTS on 12.642 (H,24000,1164,1141,1164): It's encrypted
PTS on 12.642 (H,24000,4194,4195,4194): It's encrypted
TTV on 12.664 (H,4220,308,256,8190): It has started
Phoenix News on 3.582 (H,12860,33,34,33): New NID
Azio on 3.582 (H,12860,44,35,34): New NID
Star Sport on 3.582 (H,12860,36,37,36): New NID
TVBS Gold on 3.582 (H,12860,38,39,38): New NID
Star Xing Kong on 3.582 (H,12860,40,41,40): New NID
HOT channel on 3.582 (H,12860,42,43,42): New NID
Happy Channel on 3.582 (H,12860,47,48,47): New NID
INSAT 3A (93.5E)
Audio 7 on 11.173 (H,27500,1316,1316): It Has Started
Audio 8 on 11.173 (H,27500,1319,1319): It Has Started
Smile Tv on 11.173 (H,27500,160,80,160): It Has Started
Star Sports on 11.173 (H,27500,161,82,161): It Has Started
FX Movies on 11.173 (H,27500,162,84,162): It Has Started
Action Movies on 11.173 (H,27500,163,86,163): It Has Started
Classic Movies on 11.173 (H,27500,164,88,164): It Has Started
Premier Movies on 11.173 (H,27500,165,90,165): It Has Started
POGO on 11.173 (H,27500,166,92,166): It Has Started
DD Sports on 11.173 (H,27500,167,94,167): It Has Started
AAJ Tak on 11.173 (H,27500,168,96,168): It Has Started
DD National on 11.173 (H,27500,169,98,169): It Has Started
TCT World on 11.173 (H,27500,170,100,170): It Has Started
Sab Tv on 11.173 (H,27500,171,102,171): It Has Started
NSS 6 (95.0E)
BBC World on 11.634 (H,26245,512,640,8190): New NID
Hallmark on 11.634 (H,26245,513,641,8190)
ESPN on 11.634 (H,26245,514,642,8190)
Discovery on 11.634 (H,26245,515,643,8190)
AXN on 11.634 (H,26245,516,644,8190)
HBO on 11.634 (H,26245,517,645,8190)
CNN INternational on 11.634 (H,26245,518,646,8190)
NHK Premium on 11.634 (H,26245,519,647,8190)
Cartoon Network on 11.634 (H,26245,521,649,8190)
Data Service on 11.634 (H,26245)
DD NATIONAL on 12.651 (V,27494,501,601,501): It Has Started
DD-TAMIL on 12.651 (V,27494,502,602,502): It Has Started
DD TELUGU on 12.651 (V,27494,504,604,504): It Has Started
DD MALYALAM on 12.651 (V,27494,505,605,505): It Has Started
DD ORIYA on 12.651 (V,27494,506,606,506): It Has Started
DD KANNADA on 12.651 (V,27494,507,607,507): It Has Started
DD GUJARATI on 12.651 (V,27494,508,608,508): It Has Started
GYANDARSHAN on 12.733 (V,27494,512,612,512): It has started
DDNEWS on 12.733 (V,27494,513,613,513): It has started
GYANDARSHAN2 on 12.733 (V,27494,514,614,514): It has started
NEWS2 on 12.733 (V,27494,515,615,515): It has started
GYANDARSHAN3 on 12.733 (V,27494,516,616,516): It has started
DD-INDIA on 12.733 (V,27494,517,617,517): It has started
DD-SPORTS on 12.733 (V,27494,518,618,518): It has started
DD-BHARTI on 12.733 (V,27494,519,619,519): It has started
DD-NEWS3 on 12.733 (V,27494,520,620,520): It has started
DD-INDIA2 on 12.733 (V,27494,521,621,521): It has started
Data Service on 11.634 (H,26245): It has started
Nickelodeon on 11.634 (H,26245,514,642,8190): It has started
MTV Asia on 11.634 (H,26245,517,645,8190): It has started
I-Musik on 11.634 (H,26245,518,646,8190): It has started
CNNfn/Global TV on 11.634 (H,26245,513,641,8190): It has started
Swara on 11.634 (H,26245,516,644,8190): It has started
Quick Channel on 11.634 (H,26245,515,643,8190): It has started
Da Ai on 11.634 (H,26245,512,640,8190): It has started
TBN/GOTN/CBN on 11.634 (H,26245,519,647,8190): It has started
TEST on 11.634 (H,26245,521,649,8190): It has started
PHILIPS DOWNLOAD 1.1 on 12.692 (V,27500): It Has Started
EURO on 12.692 (V,27500): It Has Started
DISH TV INTERACTIVE on 12.692 (V,27500,702,703,702): It Has Started
ZEE TV on 12.692 (V,27500,160,80,160): It Has Started
ZEE CINEMA on 12.692 (V,27500,161,82,161): It Has Started
ZEE MUSIC on 12.692 (V,27500,162,88,162): It Has Started
ZEE NEWS on 12.692 (V,27500,163,90,163): It Has Started
A MARATHI on 12.692 (V,27500,164,96,164): It Has Started
A PUNJABI on 12.692 (V,27500,165,98,165): It Has Started
A GUJRATI on 12.692 (V,27500,166,104,166): It Has Started
A BANGLA on 12.692 (V,27500,167,106,167): It Has Started
TRENDZ on 12.692 (V,27500,168,108,168): It Has Started
ZEE MGM on 12.692 (V,27500,169,110,169): It Has Started
Zee English on 12.692 (V,27500,170,112,170): It Has Started
PCRMTPAT on 10.978 (H,36000,869): It Has Started
Feed on 11.131 (H): It has started
Lig TV on 12.646 (V,28066,273,274,273): New PID
Future TV USA on 12.646 (V,28066,513,514,513): New PID
Tele Liban on 12.646 (V,28066,769,770,769): New PID
ECS 2 on 12.646 (V,28066,1025,1026,1025): New PID
Nile TV International on 12.646 (V,28066,1041,1042,1041): New PID
Test Card on 12.646 (V,28066,1537,1538,1537): New PID
BN TV on 12.646 (V,28066,1793,1794,1793): It has started
TV Moda on 12.688 (H,21000,273,274,273): New PIDs
Playlist on 12.688 (H,21000,289,290,289)
Al Mahwer on 12.688 (H,21000,769,770,769)
SIC International on 12.688 (H,21000,1026,1027,1026)
Telepace on 12.688 (H,21000,1281,1282,1281)
Test Card on 12.688 (H,21000,1538,1539,1538)
Public TV Armenia on 12.688 (H,21000,1793,1794,1793)
Nojoom on 12.688 (H,21000,2049,2050,2049)
Radio Italia Anni '60 on 12.688 (H,21000,305,304)
Radio Italia on 12.688 (H,21000,321,320)
Kanal Melodia on 12.688 (H,21000,337,336)
TGRT FM on 12.688 (H,21000,514,513)
Zee on 12.692 (V,27500)
ASIASAT 3S (105.5E)
Syria TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1111,1112,1111)
Radio Omdurman Holy Koran on 3.880 (H,27500,2312,2312)
Abu Dhabi TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1131,1132,1131)
Oman TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1141,1142,1141)
Al Manar TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1161,1162,1161)
Saudi TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1171,1172,1171)
Qatar TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1181,1182,1181)
Sudan TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1191,1192,1191)
Libiya TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1211,1212,1211)
Emirates FM on 3.880 (H,27500,1412,1412)
Voice of People on 3.880 (H,27500,1512,1512)
Main General Program on 3.880 (H,27500,1612,1612)
Oman Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,1712,1712)
Saudi Radio 1 on 3.880 (H,27500,1812,1812)
Radio Quran on 3.880 (H,27500,1912,1912)
Sudan Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,2112,2112)
Al Nour Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,2212,2212)
Radio Omdurman Holy Koran on 3.880 (H,27500,2312,2312)
TELKOM 1 (108.0E)
antv Feeds on 3.985 (H,6000,308,256,8190): Occasional Feed
TV7-Network on 4.075 (H,6000,308,256,8190): It has started
Radio Sonora FM on 4.075 (H,6000,257,8190)
PALAPA C2 (113.0E)
Data Service on 3.977 (H,2539): New NID
MWD - Myawady TV on 3.707 (H,5925,4194,4195,4194): NID changed
KOREASAT 2 (113.0E)
Baseball on 12.290 (H,25844,800,801,800): It has started
Tadiran Scopus on 12.697 (H,3000,4194,4195,4194)
Dizzo Human on 12.706 (H,3000,4194,4195,4194): It's clear now
Feeds (LGCC) on 12.370 (H,26850,1160,1120,1160): It has started
Feeds (BCN) on 12.370 (H,26850,1260,1220,1260): It has started
Feeds (OBC) on 12.370 (H,26850,1360,1320,1360): It has started
Feeds (LIFEN-TV) on 12.370 (H,26850,1460,1420,1460): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1560,1520,1560): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1660,1620,1660): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1760,1720,1760): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1860,1820,1860): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1960,1920,1960): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,1060,1020,1060): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,501,540,501): It has started
Feeds (LG) on 12.370 (H,26850,502,550,502): It has started
Feeds on 12.370 (H,26850,502,550,502): It has started
Feeds on 12.530 (H,26030,257,258,257): It has started
I-TV on 12.554 (H,2900,4194,4195,4194): It has started
TV Service1 on 12.619 (H,12297,3956,3957,3956): New NID
TV Service2 on 12.619 (H,12297,1592,1593,1592): New NID
TV Service3 on 12.619 (H,12297,2122,2123,2122): New NID
TV Service4 on 12.619 (H,12297,4826,4827,4826): New NID
TV Service5 on 12.619 (H,12297,4381,4382,4381): New NID
MBC CM on 12.661 (H,3300,4194,4195,4194): It has started
ASIASAT 4 (122.0E)
TVSN on 3.864 (V,4300,1160,1120,1160)
TVSN on 3.864 (V,4300,1160,1120,1160)
PANAMSAT 8 (166.0E)
32_Test on 3.860 (H,28000,921): It has started
MAC TV on 3.860 (H,28000,168,1112,168): It has started
CTS on 3.948 (V,10125): It has started
Test Card on 4.180 (H,27500,7000,7010,2305)
HMV TV on 12.422 (H,3677,3601,3604,3601): SID/NID/TID added
Inter FM on 12.422 (H,3677,3605,3605): SID/NID/TID added
HMV Radio 1 on 12.422 (H,3677,3606,3606): SID/NID/TID added
HMV Radio 2 on 12.422 (H,3677,3607,3607): SID/NID/TID added
Giordano Radio on 3.860 (H,28000,921): It has started
ABS-CBN 2 (cable) on 3.880 (V,28700,1260,1220,1260): It's encrypted again
ABS-CBN 3 (cable) on 3.880 (V,28700,1360,1320,1360): It's encrypted again
Test card on 12.326 (H,28067,515,643,8190): Replaced MKTV Sat
Test card on 12.606 (H,28062,521,649,521): Replaced Phoenix Chinese
Test card on 12.646 (H,28054,517,645): Replaced Leonardo
Test card on 12.646 (H,28054,521,649): Replaced CTI TV
Test card on 12.646 (H,28054,522,650): Replaced Asia Plus
Test card on 12.646 (H,28054,523,651): Replaced Hunan TV
Hunan TV on 12.686 (H,28125,2110,2120,2110): Replaced Test Card; it's clear now
PANAMSAT 2 (169.0E)
Fox Feeds (Channel 1) on 3.992 (V,26470,1160,1120,1160): It's clear now
Fox Feeds (Channel 4) on 3.992 (V,26470,1460,1420,1460): It's clear now
Feeds on 3.770 (H,9040,33,38,33): Replaced MBC
The Hope Channel on 4.022 (V,5900,1160,1120,1160): It has started
Channel One on 4.090 (V,21000,512,640,128): Name correction
Syria Satellite Channel on 4.090 (V,21000,516,644,132): Name correction
Telefe International on 4.090 (V,21000,517,645,133): Name correction
TV Chile on 4.090 (V,21000,519,647,135): Name correction
Union backs Telstra
A ROW is looming between Australia's largest communications union and the Labor Party over policy plans to force Telstra out of its Foxtel pay-TV joint venture.
A Communications, Electrical and Plumbers Union (CEPU) paper circulated among senior Labor members says Telstra should be free to pursue new revenue through the content and media industries to fund community service obligations.
The paper's release foreshadows a looming confrontation between the union and shadow communications minister Lindsay Tanner. It also delivers an unlikely ally to Telstra's management.
Mr Tanner told a conference last week that Telstra's half-ownership of Foxtel had inhibited telecommunications competition and stunted the growth of broadband services in Australia.
Labor has not formally announced a policy that would require Telstra to divest its Foxtel shareholding. But CEPU communications division president Colin Cooper said Mr Tanner had in recent months pushed the idea "more than we think is prudent".
Forcing Telstra to sell its Foxtel holding would further concentrate media ownership in Australia by delivering the pay-TV company either to News Limited (publisher of The Australian) or Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd, Telstra's partners in the company, the union said.
"The union does not consider that any sound public policy case has been established for forcing Telstra out of Foxtel," the CEPU paper says. "We do not believe that such divestiture would stimulate greater broadband penetration in Australia, as the ACCC (Australian Competition and Consumer Commission) appears to believe," he said.
Downer launches ABC service in Singapore
The Australian Broadcasting Corporation Asia Pacific (ABCAP) television service was launched in Singapore yesterday by Foreign Minister Alexander Downer.
The broadcaster teamed up with Singapore's only cable operator Starhub to offer the service on a new digital cable platform.
"Singapore, a very rich and a vital country, will be massively enhanced by access to ABCAP," Downer, stopping over from a visit to Malaysia, said at the channel's launch in a hotel function hall full of Australian expatriates.
"I think for our country it is very important that we have our voice, our language, our accent, our way of seeing the world projected around the world," he said.
"We want the world to understand the way we see that world."
The ABC has been available in Asia-Pacific markets for just under three years and is now seen in 33 countries, he said.
"We have ambitions to satisfy expatriates but we have ambitions to go beyond that," Downer said.
Thousands of Australians live and work in Singapore. Australia is in turn one of the favourite destinations of Singaporean tourists and students, creating a growing market for Australian goods and services in the city-state.
BROADCASTING: Firms signed for Channel 11
The Government's Public Relations Department yesterday unveiled a joint undertaking to develop news content for TV Channel 11 and other potential clients, including 24-hour satellite TV and UBC cable TV.
The department's partners are RNT News Co Ltd and Thaiday.com Co Ltd, a media unit of the Manager Group.
The news content will be broadcast to satellite TV via the KU-band system, local cable TV stations throughout the country and UBC Channels 19 and 77 under an "11 NEWS 1" logo.
The department will, however, allow its private-sector partners to broadcast the content to other media outlets, including satellite TV and cable TV, to help their commercial survival, said Dussadee Sinchermsiri, the department's deputy director-general.
Dussadee said the partners would help his department overcome its limitations in manpower, equipment and financing and "support the department's policy to be the centre of information between the government and its people" and "create good understanding" between government and public.
The department has been allowing private-sector involvement in producing content for Channel 11 since 1992, Dussadee said, with RNT News contributing news content since 2002.
Brave Heart International Co Ltd, which is owned by the Chamikorn family, and Manager Group's Thaiday.com Co Ltd are the two latest private players, earning two-year contracts.
Dussadee said "about four" other private companies had approached the department about supplying content to Channel 11. The department is considering applications case by case, he said, looking for those who can provide the best media support and help develop the country according to government policy.
"We have joined with Brave Heart because it is committing itself to promoting Thai tourism and culture abroad," Dussadee said. "Thaiday.com will upgrade the channel's news content to compete with other free TV channels, such as Channels 3, 5, 7 and 9 and iTV."
Dussadee said a small portion of advertising revenues stemming from the joint effort would go to his department.
Thaiday.com CEO Jitttanart Limthongkul said the partnership matched his firm's strategy of expanding into diversified media.
"We went from developing the manager.co.th website to the Manager newspaper to radio programmes broadcast at 97.5MHz and the TV show 'Muang Thai Rai Sabda' ('Thailand Weekly') on Channel 9," he said.
SATELLITE TV: New channels 'illegal'
Critics say PRD should have waited until the formation of a national broadcasting regulator
The opening up of more satellite TV channels before a broadcasting regulator has been formed raises questions of legality.
The Public Relations Department (PRD) recently launched TV 11/1 and 11/2 with news content from RNT News- Thaidaydotcom and Brave Heart International.
Under the frequency allocation law, no news agency can create a TV station, award a broadcasting licence or expand its business in the absence of the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC).
A TV source said the creation of satellite channels amounts to an expansion of business.
"If the department can create |channels, any TV station can freely |do the same. What do we need the law for?"
A PRD source argued that the two channels were not new - they were its existing satellite TV channels.
The PRD had leased one C-band transponder on the Thaicom 2 satellite of Shin Satellite Plc before moving up to more advanced Thaicom 3, which can be split into eight channels. The PRD uses two of the channels and provides some to production houses, including RNT News and Brave Heart. It still has three unused channels.
Dussadee Sinchermsiri, PRD deputy director-general, denied awarding new licences to RNT News and Brave Heart, saying that the PRD had teamed with them to co-produce news programmes on the new satellite channels and its existing terrestrial channel, Television of Thailand 11.
"We don't have enough experience producing news shows, so we need their help," he said.
Both companies would produce news content that promoted good understanding by the public of the government, Thai culture and the tourism industry.
"There're many companies plan-|ning to join with us in the future to |produce similar news programmes," he said.
One broadcasting veteran said |the lack of the NBC meant no one |could have a final say if the collaboration among RNT News, Brave Heart |and the PRD to produce news programming breaches the frequency allocation law.
The PM's Office is appointing a panel to select the seven NBC members, which will be in charge of deregulating the industry and issuing new broadcasting concessions.
The selection process of the NBC members was aborted last year after the Supreme Administrative Court said it lacked transparency.
Sun TV reaches out to a global audience
CHENNAI: Come June 21, any Tamil-speaking person living anywhere in the globe from Auckland to Los Angeles and from London to Cape Town can watch the prime Tamil entertainment channel when Sun TV, the flagship channel of Sun Network, enters the South Africa and Mauritius markets through Multichoice DTH (direct to home) platform.
Further, the Sun Network, which owns a bouquet of entertainment channels in Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam, has taken a few of the group channels to the US and the UK. While Gemini and Surya were launched in the US in April this year, Teja followed suit three weeks ago. A week back, KTV and Udaya were added to the list in the US. Simultaneously, KTV was also launched in the UK.
Over the last couple of years, activities at Sun Network were on at a feverish pace to achieve global reach for the flagship channel, Sun TV. While the neighbouring Tamil speaking markets were always within reach, the network did not have a direct presence in some major markets like the US and Europe.
Starting with the US and Canada, it then moved on to Europe and the North African markets through the DTH route over the last 18 months. Early this week, on June 9, Sun TV entered the whole of Australia and New Zealand through the Optus DTH service. Until then, it was available as a free-to-air channel upto Perth and not beyond.
“Sun TV is the only regional channel of any region and country to reach out to audiences across the world,” Mr Kalanithi Maran, CMD, Sun Network said. Sun TV is targeted to reach 30,000 households in the US, 70,000 in Europe and the Middle East, close to 20,000 in South Africa and Mauritius and over 45,000 households in Australia and New Zealand. It has a subscriber base of over 20,000 in the US and a little over 9,000 in the Europe.
“The response to Sun TV in Australia and New Zealand, where it will be available with an 18-and-a-half hour time lag, has been tremendous. The region has a huge population of Sri Lankan Tamils and it also is an emerging market for South Indian population,” Mr Maran said.
For the first one month, Sun TV will be offered as a free service in the region. Subsequently, it will go pay as was the case with the developed markets. In India, Sun TV continues to be a free-to-air channel. “Based on market demand, we will expand the reach of other group channels to new markets,” Mr Maran pointed out.
The Sun Network owns a bouquet of nearly 12 satellite and cable channels in the four major south Indian languages market, which generates advertisement revenues to the tune of Rs 600 crore to Rs 700 crore.
Industry estimates place Sun Network’s share of the ad pie in each language at 75% in Tamil, 60% in Telugu, 70% in Kannada and 45%-50% in Malayalam markets.
ISRO set to launch EDUSAT satellite in August
BANGALORE: The day when students in the remotest parts of the country, who are deprived of the most basic infrastructural facilities of modern education, can avail the best of classroom teaching by the most experienced teachers without leaving their towns and villages is not faraway.
They would even exchange views, put their doubts to the teachers and get immediate replies.
This is a dream that would turn into reality when the Indian Space Research Organisation's (ISRO) satellite for educational services, EDUSAT, is lofted into orbit in August from the Sriharikota spaceport near Chennai by the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV-F01) in its third flight.
EDUSAT, which is ready to be launched, would provide better connectivity to educational institutions, including professional colleges, and primary and high schools, apart from providing teachers and artisans training under a footprint that would cover the entire nation.
Orbiting in space, it would ameliorate the one of the most frequently heard complaints on the ground - the dearth of infrastructure and teachers.
"In our country where the illiteracy rate is as high as 30 percent and dropout rate is also very high, the satellite will be of utmost help in interactive satellite-based distance education system across the country," said ISRO Chairman G. Madhavan Nair.
He said, once EDUSAT is launched, India would be the first country in the world to dedicate a satellite exclusively to education.
The project, approved in October 2002, took two years to be completed.
Specifically configured to have a multiple beams covering different regions of India, the satellite will have a KU-band transponder with its footprint covering the Indian mainland region and another five KU-band transponders to provide spot beams towards northern, north-eastern, eastern, southern and western regions of India.
Another six C-band transponders with their footprint will cover the entire country.
So far, in the Pre-EDUSAT period, Karnataka, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh have implemented a pilot project with a KU-band transponder on board INSAT-3A and INSAT-3B.
YB Chavan University in Nasik, Armada Institute in Coimbatore, and Visveswaraiah Technological University in Karnataka with hundreds of modes in a network covering all its engineering colleges were included in the pilot project.
"For this ISRO is working with the Ministry of HRD in identifying the institutes and very soon we're planning to have a vice chancellors' conference," said Nair.
He said it may take two to three years for the entire nation to be covered under the project. The onus now lies on the HRD Ministry and the state governments to implement the project, he added.
UTV's Hungama TV hops on to Star bandwagon
Rupert Murdoch's Star TV Network in India is all set to add one more channel to its bouquet -- UTV's kids' channel Hungama TV.
For Star, this could well be a strategic move to home in on the niche but crucial genre of kids entertainment while for Hungama TV, the alliance spells, among other advantages, attractive advertising revenues.
Though Star India and UTV officials have confirmed the distribution alliance, they were not available for comments. UTV had been negotiating a distribution deal with key industry players such as Star and Sony.
Ronnie Screwvala's UTV Software Communications is launching the kids' channel through its newly floated subsidiary United Home Entertainment. While 51 per cent of UHE's equity is with Screwvala, the remaining 49 per cent rests with UTV.
Hungama TV is being funded partly through private placements and partly by UTV and Screwvala. UHE plans to raise Rs 75 crore (Rs 750 million) via the private placement route for which Lazard India has been named as fund manager. A further Rs 25 crore (Rs 250 million) would be pumped in by UTV and Screwvala each contributing equally.
The company has secured the necessary permissions to uplink the kids' channel via Panamsat-10 satellite earlier this year. While Hungama TV's estimated Rs 8-10 crore (Rs 80-Rs 100 million) media account has gone to Starcom, the creative account has been bagged by JWT.
While the majority of Hungama TV's programming will come from UTV's in-house production company, programmes have also been commissioned from production houses such as Contiloe, Inhouse, Garima, Sphere, Eagle Films, Picasso, Edit 2, Rose and Media Track.
The programming focus, however, is not animation-based, which is likely to be only 10 per cent of the total programming.
This is, perhaps, to offer a differentiated product vis-a-vis channels such as Cartoon Network and Pogo. Children's programming slots on mass entertainment channels such as Star Plus, Sony and Zee too currently focus on animation-based programming.
While the channel's broader target audience is pegged to be in the 4-15 age group, the programming will be spaced so as to offer separate time bands for children of different age groups.
The morning slot between 0900 to 1100 targets the 2-5 age group, the afternoon band between 13:30 to 15:30 targets the 4-8 age group and the evening slot starting at 16:00 aims at drawing young audiences in the 8-16 age bracket.
Star India's current bouquet of channels includes Star Plus, Star Movies, Star Gold, Channel [V], Star World, National Geographic, History channel, Vijay TV and the recently proposed Star Utsav and Star One.
TV9 to launch Kannada news, Telugu entertainment channels
MUMBAI: Recently launched Telugu news channel TV9 will soon have two siblings for company. Launching before the year is out is a Kannada news channel and a Telugu entertainment channel.
TV9 CEO V Ravi Prakash told indiantelevision.com that TV9 Kannada would be ready for test run by September, while the entertainment channel would be launched by December. TV9 Kannada will be headquartered in Bangalore.
Outlining his prorities, Prakash said TV9 Kannada would target the urban youth and women.
"With our Kannada news channel, we will be targeting the urban populace below 35 and at the same time we want to focus on women who have been bombarded with more and more soaps these days," he said.
Funded by venture capitalist Srini Raju's i-Labs Associated Fund and Chennai-based Unify Wealth Management, TV9 was launched on 1 February 2004. The channel is also available in the US and Europe.
No update Sunday
No update Saturday
Lyngsat is on a break until the 19th while he's away in India. So please scan the skys and email to me any changes you find.
W.A Shop busted in piracy raid?? supposedly operating card servers and sharing various paytv services.
NSS6 Sexztv off again?
Read Jon's Asia Weekly for more info on where to find Euro2004 coverage. One he missed out though is CCTV1 which you can get on Asiasat3 and other satellites.
Euro2004 Tv schedules
Jon's Asia Weekly
"The Euro 2004 Fever"
It is silly season again for all the football (or soccer) lovers out there
across the region with the Euro 2004 Cup going on over the next few weeks. So I
thought I would devote this issue to finding and watching the cup on free to air
C band and Ku Band channels.
Panamsat 7/10 68.5 E C Band
3863 V 20600
MultiChoice - SuperSport Channel 3 http://www.supersport.co.za/
(This is a subscription based service, but is all over Asia, the Middle East and
Africa, so I had to start with it)
An example of the programme content this Saturday (In ZA Times)
SuperSport Three, Saturday 12 June
Time Sport Details
13:00 - 14:00 Soccer show On The Ball
14:00 - 14:30 Soccer Engen Premier Soccer
14:30 - 15:00 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
15:00 - 15:30 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
15:30 - 16:00 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
16:00 - 16:30 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
16:30 - 17:00 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
17:00 - 17:30 Soccer Hyundai Euro 2004 Focus
17:30 - 20:00 Soccer UEFA Euro 2004: Portugal vs Greece, LIVE
20:00 - 20:15 Variety Sport Athletes Who Defined A Decade
20:15 - 23:00 Soccer UEFA Euro 2004: Spain vs Russia, LIVE
23:00 - 00:00 Variety Sport Trans World Sport
Free to Air channels showing Euro 2004 across the region with links to their web
sites. Please note both analog and digital feeds have been included as we still
have a few readers who use analog, and complain at me for not including any
details for them (so enjoy this lot).
Thaicom 2/3 78.5 E C Band
3950 H PAL Analog Thai TV 3 - http://www.thaitv3.com/schedule/schedule.html# (Am told they will feed both English and Thai languages maybe local or via the UBC KU Band bouquet)
3751 H PAL Analog Thai TV 7 - http://www.ch7.com/sportweb/sport_live.html (Am told they will feed both English and Thai languages maybe local or via the UBC KU Band bouquet)
Measat 1 91.5 E C Band
4147 H 7030 Malaysia TV 3 - http://220.127.116.11/euro2004/ontv3/tvschedule.html
4158 H 9766 VTV3 - http://www.vtv.org.vn/VTV3/2004/6/17667.vtv (Maybe in Vietnamese)
Asia Sat 2 100.5E C Band
4000 H 28125 RTP Radio TV Portugal http://www.rtp.pt/
TVE International http://www.rtve.es/eventos/indexcompleto.html
4020 V 27500 EuroSportNews will carry highlight packages with all the results
Palapa C2 113 E C Band
3473 H 8000 RCTI - http://www.rcti.tv/ then click on promo
Thaicom 1A C Band
3855 V 3400 CTN -http://www.ctncambodia.com/schedules/Weekly%20Sked%20period%2007-13-06-04.pdf
(English as well as Cambodian)
Measat 2 - KU Band
11522 H 9766 VTV3 - http://www.vtv.org.vn/VTV3/2004/6/17667.vtv (Maybe in Vietnamese)
Other subscription based services (Check your local magazines for details) from across the Region
Check our the ESPN Stat sports web site
(http://www.espnstar.com/jsp/cda/sportsonair/tvtimes_legacy.html ) for your area like the example below for India;
ESPN India (long URL Sorry)
MultiChoice South Africa (see above)
Great Sports network - China
Astro - Malaysia
Sky Perfectv - Japan
Sky New Zealand
Canalsatellite Caledonie New Caledonia
I am sure I have missed a few subscriber networks, but I have a problem seeing
some of them from up here in the middle of Asia.
Happy viewing you couch potatoes you ..
Back to normal next week..
From my Emails & ICQ
From Steve Draper
State Funeral, Ronald Reagan (TVNZ B1)
[From Ric Carlyon of TVNZ]:
The United States will effectively be closed tomorrow
(NZ Time) as a mark of respect to former President
Ronald Reagan. And TVNZ's Free To Air Digital service,
FreeVue 1, will be broadcasting delayed coverage of
the State Funeral and associated events in Washington.
Preliminary activities for formalities will begin
while most kiwis are asleep at half past two in the
morning, so FV1 is time-shifting the broadcast to
commence at 7pm Saturday evening NZ time. It's
expected the events to honour and farewell the late
President will take more than 3 hours. [END}
From Satellite info
Living Asia Channel (In English)
Pas 2 4090 v 21000 Vpid 518 Apid 646
(Craigs comment, available fta via Agila 2 cband to those in Asia)
From the Dish
PAS 2 169E 3836 V New PIDs for Al-Jazeera Satellite Channel on : 2311/2312.
Palapa C2 113E 3473 H "RCTI" is still Fta.
NSS 6 95E 10977 H "PlanetSky" has started on , SR 36000, FEC 7/8, Indian beam.
NSS 6 95E 11543 V "PlanetSky "has started on , SR 39999, FEC 7/8, Middle East beam.
Yamal 201 90E 4021 R "Rambler TeleSet (+0h)" has started on , enc., SR 9035, FEC 3/4,PIDs 308/256.
Telstar 10 76.5E 3652 H "TV Lanka Channel 3" is now encrypted.
PAS 10 68.5E "Telly Track" on 4099 V and 12687 V is fta still.
Seven drops Foxtel access claim
PAY-TV group Foxtel has gained a boost as it prepares to fight the Seven Network's $2 billion-plus legal action after Seven yesterday withdrew its objections to the terms of access to Foxtel's analogue system.
While Seven claims it withdrew the objection as access to Foxtel Digital was now more important, Foxtel says it proves Seven accepts Foxtel's analogue access terms are reasonable.
That could be a critical factor in the legal case, due to start next March, as Seven alleges Foxtel and Telstra (owner of the cable used to deliver Foxtel to many homes) deliberately disallowed access for its failed sports pay-TV channel C7 to prevent it gaining sports broadcasting rights.
That claim comes within a broader allegation that Foxtel, which is 25 per cent owned by The News Corporation Ltd, owner of The Australian, and others colluded to kill Seven's pay-TV ambitions.
Foxtel spokesman Mark Furness said the analogue access terms were fair and reasonable, as agreed by the ACCC. "Seven is now acknowledging they will only get access on those terms. Common sense has prevailed," he said.
But Seven spokesman Simon Francis said the withdrawal only acknowledged that analogue pay-TV was redundant since the launch of digital.
"This decision by Seven on analogue access is not an acknowledgment that the Foxtel-Optus undertakings are appropriate," he said.
Seven is continuing an appeal to the Australian Competition Tribunal against the terms for digital access.
Seven's decision to withdraw its analogue dispute ends four years of wrangling.
BSkyB backtracks over free digital service
BSKYB’S promise to provide a free-to-air satellite package with no monthly fee may only be for a limited period.
Although the satellite broadcasting giant announced on Wednesday that it would offer customers 200 TV and radio channels for a one-off fee of £150, it is understood that chief executive James Murdoch has told the City that charges could be introduced later.
A decryption card will be required to view the channels, which will expire after two years. When the card runs out, customers will not have access to ITV1, Channel 4 and Five, and may have to pay for a replacement.
Living Asia Channel debuts on TFC on Independence Day
Beginning June 12, the Philippine Independence Day, the Living Asia Channel, the proudly Philippine-made Asian travel and lifestyle channel, will air on The Filipino Channel (TFC) Direct! satellite television platform of ABS-CBN International in North America.
TFC Direct! has an audited paying viewership of 80,000 subscriber households.
Living Asia Channel is now airing in North America via GlobeCast World TV DTH (direct-to-home) platform. GlobeCast, a subsidiary of France Telecom, has an audited paying subscriber base of more than 120,000. With TFC Direct!’s 80,000 DTH subscriber base, Living Asia Channel’s North American viewership on these two platforms is now effectively pegged at 200,000 households translated to more than a million individuals.
In the Philippines, close to half a million paying subscribers are already watching Living Asia Channel via Home Cable (Channel 42) and Destiny (Channel 49) cable TV systems and the Dream (Channel 16) satellite TV system. Living Asia Channel is also being rebroadcast by provincial cable operators, which are accessing the channel through the Dream TV DTH system.
In Asia, Living Asia Channel is also available through the communications satellite Agila II of Mabuhay Satellite Corp., which has a C-band footprint encompassing Bangladesh, Bhutan, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Laos, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Taiwan, Thailand, Vietnam and Hawaii.
Living Asia Channel’s programs are designed to cater to target audiences with ages ranging from 25 to 45 years old. Its English language format also makes Living Asia Channel attractive to Asian-Americans and other segments of the US-Canada market.
The Living Asia Channel is the first Philippine-made Asian lifestyle and travel channel in North America. It showcases the best of Asian destinations, finds, culture, cuisine, fashion, people, business, issues and investment opportunities in the Philippines and Asia, through the following programs:
• Glimpses: Factual bits of information about a place, its people, art and culture, geography, flora and fauna, traditions, lifestyle, quirks, night life, business, spicy personalities, etc.
• Windows: Snippets of human-interest situations captured between shoots. Range of drama, trivia, lifestyle, mystical, or comic themes.
• Celebration Parties: Traditional, as well as new ways Asians celebrate occasions. Includes background information of the featured event to help viewers better understand the experience.
• Cuisine Asia: Traditional, contemporary, or fusion. Asian food -- how they’re cooked, served and “chowed.” With stirring insights and on-the-fire, in-your-face kitchen shoots peppered with chef interview segments.
• Travel Guide: Ins, outs, and in-betweens, wheres, hows, how much, and what to expect in a particular destination. With a dash of information on culture, tradition, shopping, and trends.
• Our Asia: What makes Asia and Asians tick; the present and the future by way of the past. Includes stories about Asia in the face of globalization, plus features on the Asian diaspora -- how Asians cope with different environments and cultures, and how they excel.
• Paradise East: Asia’s best destinations. Includes relevant travel information for value-added viewing. One destination per episode.
• Antique Asia: The past and what’s left of it. Heritage sites, landmarks, objects, living traditions, art, legends.
• Bed & Dine Asia: Food and board plugs in a template.
• Adventure: Asians at play in their wild environs. Whitewater, offroad, parasails, triathlons, treks, rocks, dives, caves, jungles.
• Origins: Asians looking back, thinking back, going back to their roots. Some staying for a weekend, some staying for good. Interviews, reminiscences, flashbacks, hindsight, and from all that, rediscoveries and perhaps, rebirth. In words and film.
• Young Asia: Asians in transition. Metamorphosis on video. How young Asians live, what they think and what they do for fun or profit. With tips on fashion, music, health and recreation, entrepreneurship, urban living, school, relationships.
Living Asia Channel is a product of CCI Asia Group, a broadcast content producer that created Lakbay TV, the first dedicated travel channel on Philippine TV; Isla, the only advocacy channel in the Philippines; and, Juice, the first lifestyle channel that caters to the young Filipino.
Russia puts new military satellite into orbit
Moscow, Jun 10 (UNI) Russia today successfully launched a 'Kosmos' series satellite from the Baikonur centre on a 'Zenit' rocket.
''The Kosmos satellite separated from the carrier rocket at 0541 hrs (about 0615 hrs IST) and began operating in its planned orbit. It has been given the designation Kosmos 2406,'' Interfax quoted a spokesman of the Russian Space Forces as saying.
A stable communication link had been established with the satellite, which will operate for the Russian Defence Ministry, he said, adding that the satellite has been under the control of the Space Forces' command post in Yakutsk (Siberia), since 0538 hrs (about 0710 hrs IST).
This was the first 'Zenit' launch in 2004. Originally planned for April 25, it had been repeatedly postponed due to technical difficulties. 'Zenit' is a medium class launch vehicle. Flight tests of its first version had started in 1985.
Atlas Interactive Delivers TV Through Phone Lines in India
From Press Release
LONDON--(BUSINESS WIRE)--June 10, 2004--The global communications company, Atlas Interactive a part of Atlas Group of Companies, working initially with Indian telecoms giant, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) today (10 June 2004) announced a $200million plan to use IP technology to deliver entertainment and information services over existing copper networks and through televisions to millions of people in India.
In a 15 year revenue sharing deal, Atlas Interactive will partner with BSNL to deploy: TV over IP; time-shifted TV; interactive TV; video-on-demand; videoconferencing; broadband, and a range of commercial and information support services to be developed in collaboration with the private and public sectors. The project will be branded 'netTV'. The project will require $200m of funding by 2007 and is expected to break even by 2006. Significant financial support in terms of vendor financing has been committed by selected vendors of this technology and plans are underway for a major public offering in 2004 in India to enhance equity.
There are currently 247 free to air and 96 paid digital channels available in India and 27 different satellite systems. netTV will use set top boxes linked to televisions and phone lines to deliver high quality television services in addition to music, broadband access, SMS, email, web and Intranet access and data - all at broadband speeds of up to 3 Mbps.
Philippe Bednarek, Chairman of the Atlas Group, comments: "Indian audiences have previously experienced unreliable television networks and Internet dial-up. netTV utilises innovative IP technology to converge telephony with Internet and television. The result will be a uniquely consistent service. There are currently 60m fixed line subscribers of Indian Government telcos and I am confident that we can successfully penetrate this market. The deal with BSNL is a landmark development in global communications technology."
Due to be launched in the coming six months, the services will be broadcast in the suburbs of Delhi, Gurgaon, Faridabad, Ghaziabad and Noida. Any BSNL customer in the Atlas service area with a television set and a telephone connection will be able to access the broadcast services, as well as basic internet functions such as web browsing and email, through a set-top-box provided by Atlas.
Chairman of Atlas Interactive India, Abhishek Verma, comments: "netTV combines low cost infrastructure and cutting edge technology. Atlas Interactive is already recognised for its telecoms and high speed networks in worldwide public sector and military markets and we welcome the opportunity to extend this to BSNL subscribers."
Issued on behalf of Atlas Interactive India by TDM Marketing Associates
TDM Marketing Associates
Simon Shrouder, +44 (0) 1625 575592
Fax +44 (0) 1625 574313
Anne-Sophie Cavil, +44 (0) 20 7258 8700
Fax +44 (0) 20 7528 8701
Star Utsav: attracting advertisers big time
NEW DELHI: Star Utsav, the new channel from Star bouquet is up and running. And going by the industry buzz, the channel has had a good run so far with viewers sampling the channel in big numbers. Advertisers too are showing signs of latching on to the utsav . The channel had six sponsors on day one including Hindustan Levers Limited (HLL) advertising its products.
Industry sources share that Star has devised an attractive rate card to include both big and small advertisers on Utsav. It has two broad range. Star Utsav ‘ Pataka Pack’, which is for the prime time advertisersMonday to Friday 7pm to 9:30pm slots. These slots are being sold at Rs 1.27 lakhs per 30 seconds. But there is also a provision of an entry level ad spots rate between Monday and Friday (6 am - 6 pm). The 30 seconds here are worth upwards of Rs 20,400 per 30 seconds.
The aim is clearAttract small retailers from towns like Baroda and Nagpur and let them advertise on the Star bouquet. Star Utsav is being targeted in the north, west and eastern parts of India. In fact Star has seeded 2000 control rooms in eastern India with digital box of Utsav. Since the channel is kept 'free-to-air', the company believes that it is reaching to all its desired TG.
"Utsav saw a fantastic launch and a good response from both distributors and advertisers alike. We have great expectations with the channels and it will fill the need-gap of old as well as new audience of Star parivar with hits like " Kyunki..., Saas bhi ....and several other hit offering from the channel," says Ajay Vidyasagar, Senior VP, Marketing and Communications, Star.
When STAR Plus was launched in India, there were 15 million C&S homes. Now the figure has crossed 42 million and there is a constant addition of about 5 million C&S homes each year. STAR Utsav definitely makes for a good business preposition for the STAR group. Today STAR claims a near 100% reach for its STAR Plus channel in C&S homes. But will that be the case for STAR Utsav too? Says a senior media planner, "No doubt there will be an initial sampling of the channel.
It’s a STAR property and as people love to watch the old serials, advertisers would like to buy it for environment which STAR offers. The real test of the channel will lie in its ability to hold on to its audience over a sustained period of time."
The current series of re-runs will continue for at least two seasons before the channel takes a decision of introducing original programming on the channel. In a recent statement STAR CEO has said that in its July-to-June financial year, STAR was expected to touch a 30% growth in its revenues in the country and a slew of new advertising streams was essential for the company to maintain its growth. "Hopefully STAR will also keep track of its core viewers and will address their needs (on both Plus and Utsav), without whom even advertisers won't look their way," adds another Industry source.
Sun TV has started on B3, Globecast mux
No sign of Jon's Asia weekly update yet, I will put it up tomorrow.
New emetabox1 software is out version 4.05 for Emetabox and clones e.g Divitone vbox.
Get it from http://www.megaone.com/emetabox/software.htm
From my Emails & ICQ
Sun TV screenshot from Optus B3 12524V Globecast mux.
Optus B3 152Deg E
12701V Sr 14288 Fec 7/8
VID 2309 AUD NONE TEXT 2311 PCR 2305 SID 736 PMT 258
ABC TV W.A
VID 2309 AUD 2310 TEXT 2312 PCR 2305 SID 737 PMT 256
ABC DIGITAL RADIO
VID NONE AUD 2312 PCR 2308 SID 742 PMT 261
FREE X BACK ON NSS 6 S E.ASIA BEAM.
RE INDO CHANNELS : STRONG SIGNAL ON ALL INDOVISION ? CHANNELS BUT ALL ENCRYPTED.
SIAM GLOBAL BANGKOK
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 3950 V "BCN - Box Cinema Network and UBS" have left .CTS - Christian TV System is now Fta.
PAS 8 166E 12405 H "TV Masala" has left .
Agila 2 146E
Updates in Dream Satellite TV:
The Church Channel has replaced JCTV on 12581 H, clear, PIDs 172/128.
Living Asia Channel on 12581 H is now in clear.
4UTV has moved from 12301 H to 12661 H, Nagravision, PIDs 167/108.
Channel V International has left 12661 H.
AsiaSat 4 122E 3881 H "CBN (Fta), OTV News & Entertainment Channel, OTV Arts & Entertainment Channel, OTV Music Channel and OTV Folk Opera Channel" are back on ,SR 26500, FEC 3/4, PIDs 560/563 and 4176/4179-4224/4227.
Palapa C2 113E 3473 H "RCTI" is now encrypted.(this must be a mistake???? either that or its due to copyright issues with Euro 2004?)
Telkom 1 108E TV 7 (Indonesia) and Radio Sonora FM have moved from 4095 H to 4077 H,Fta, SR 6000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3780 V "Star Utsav" programing started , Fta, PIDs 519/668.
Express AM 11 96.5E 3775 L Test carriers
NSS 6 95E 11635 H An Indovision mux has started on , Videoguard, SR 26234, FEC 2/3,SE Asian beam
ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" is now encrypted.
PAS 10 68.5E "Telly Track" on 4099 V and 12687 H are now encrypted.
Ten to jump on pay-TV
THE Ten Network plans to push into pay-TV by creating subscription multi-channels on its digital-TV spectrum.
The news further fragments the commercial free-to-air TV industry's once unified stance on digital TV just as its future is being reviewed by the federal Government.
One of the reviews considers whether Seven, Nine and Ten should be able to provide extra channels (called multi-channels) on digital TV and if they could charge for them like pay-TV companies.
Seven has wanted to offer extra digital-TV channels while the Nine Network, which owns 25 per cent of pay-TV group Foxtel, has opposed the move.
Ten had also opposed multi-channelling, but in a policy reversal it wants to offer extra channels if it can charge subscribers.
Ten network manager, regulatory, Paul Walsh told the Network Insight conference that subscription multi-channelling would ensure more competition in pay-TV without harming the existing free-to-air TV networks.
Most capital cities had enough spectrum for two new digital-TV channels.
"Those unassigned channels could be assigned to subscription services run by people other than the existing subscription operators," he said.
Ten pay-TV channels could be broadcast on one digital "channel".
Mr Walsh argued there was little competition in pay-TV after Foxtel and Optus agreed to share their content.
But Australian Subscription TV & Radio Association executive director Deb Richards said there were six pay-TV companies in Australia. Apart from Foxtel and Optus, Austar operated in regional areas, as did Neighbourhood Cable and TransACT. And Television & Radio Broadcasting Services provided an ethnic pay-TV service.
Lawyer Ian McGill from Allens Arthur Robinson asked if Ten would accept rules applying to pay-TV like the anti-siphoning restrictions on sport broadcasts, the drama content rules and if it would take no ads for the first three to four years like other pay-TV services.
"I would love to be a fly on the wall when someone goes to Kerry Packer's office and says, 'Remember that money we spent on (free-to-air) digital TV? Well we are now going to build a subscriber management centre and we think based on $7 a month we will get a return in 25 years'," Mr McGill said.
Mr Walsh said he did not work for Nine Network owner Kerry Packer. Mr McGill replied, "Maybe you should."
Nine director of regulatory affairs Creina Chapman said Nine could not make money from multi-channelling.
Christmas cracker coming
THE federal Government remains hopeful that plans to build a satellite launch facility on Christmas Island will go ahead, despite delays in finding finance for the project.
Territories Minister Ian Campbell told a Senate estimates committee hearing the "massive, risky" project had been delayed.
However, he was hopeful that it would go ahead.
The plan is being pushed by Sydney-based company Asia-Pacific Space Centre (APSC), headed by chief executive David Kwon.
"Setting up a space launch facility anywhere on the globe is a massive undertaking," Senator Campbell said. "If it happens, it will be a tremendous thing for Australia, and a tremendous thing for Christmas Island.
"Mr Kwon and his team have gone about it very vigorously and energetically, but he has to find investors prepared to put money into the process of making money out of launching rockets.
"I still hope it will happen, and so does Mr Kwon."
Senator Campbell said that plans to reopen the island's 145-bed resort - owned by Mr Kwon's company Soft Star - were looking positive, with the company applying to the federal Government for permission to sub-lease the resort.
The resort and casino - a key part of the island's struggling economy - was closed during the Asian economic crisis and later purchased by Soft Star.
It is understood about 400 jobs could be created if the space port goes ahead, with another 400 created at a fully functioning resort and casino.
The Government pledged four years ago to pump $100 million into the space port, but the Senate heard in March that just $300,000 had been spent so far.
The Government now argues that $68 million of this was needed for "common-use infrastructure" not directly connected with the space port, including $4.7 million for a new port at Waterfall Bay on the eastern side of the island.
The $300,000 was spent on road design work.
APSC's Mr Kwon was travelling overseas and was not available for comment.
However, he said in February he was still courting investors for the project, but civil works had been completed and he expected construction to be completed by the first quarter of 2005.
U.K Sky to launch major free-sat package
Europe's largest pay-TV operator, BSkyB has this morning unveiled plans to launch a free satellite TV platform offering almost 200 TV, radio and iTV services without a monthly subscription fee.
Speaking at an investor conference in London today, BSkyB ceo James Murdoch said that the company would introduce the new free-to-air satellite proposition later this year.
The news comes weeks after calls from both the media regulator Ofcom and the BBC for government support in launching a satellite equivalent of Freeview - dubbed FreeSat - to drive digital uptake to the required level for analogue switch-off.
The move also comes after Murdoch Jnr rejected plans from his predecessors and colleagues to launch a beefed up entertainment channel within the BBC/Crown Castle-backed digital terrestrial platform, Freeview.
Under BSkyB's new plans, consumers will be able to purchase a package of reception equipment, including a Sky digibox, minidish and initial viewing card, direct from BSkyB for a one-off cost of £150 including installation.
"It is anticipated that the new free-to-air satellite proposition will support the Government's proposed switch-over to digital-only broadcasting by providing an additional subscription-free option for viewers not currently attracted to pay-TV," said BSkyB.
In particular, BSkyB expects its fta satellite package to allow the 27% of UK households that are currently unable to receive full Freeview service to go digital, with a monthly subs bill. Likewise, the number of households that require an aerial upgrade in order to receive DTT services.
Included in Sky's new fta package will be all the BBC's bouquet of digital channels - BBC1, BBC2 (both with national/regional variants), BBC3, BBC4, CBeebies, CBBC, BBC News 24 and BBC Parliament - all of which are unencrypted.
Digital versions of the encrypted channels ITV1, Channel 4 and Five will also be in the mix, courtesy of a digital satellite viewing card. Digital radio and interactive services such as Sky Active, BBCi, ITVi and Channel 4's Big Brother Interactive will also be available to digi-sat viewers without any monthly subs fee.
(Craigs comment, marketing at work here. All they are doing is trying to get the box into as many homes as possible and it comes with card to access certain channels. The rest of the offering you can see here. http://www.lyngsat.com/28east.html mostly religion,home shopping,ethnic,travel tv etc. plus radios)
SKY SHARES SOAR
Shares in BSkyB jumped on news of the launch a 200-channel digital service without subscription fees later this year.
The aim is to attract new customers who may eventually switch to a pay-TV package, the parent of Sky News revealed.
BSkyB, in its first broad initiatives under new CEO James Murdoch, also plans to develop by 2006 a package of channels for high-definition TV.
That is being promoted gradually in the US, to become the next default TV format.
"These initiatives are another step in giving consumers a choice from Sky that suits their needs at the top and lower ends of the scale," Mr Murdoch said.
The move has pre-empted initiatives by the BBC to launch a free-to-air digital satellite service.
The public broadcaster earlier this year asked the Government to back a so-called Freesat model to help meet the analogue switch-off date targeted for 2010.
Sky's free-to-air package will offer far more channels than does the rapidly growing Freeview, a rival service in which BSkyB is a partner.
Freeview, which was launched in October 2002, has rocketed past cable to become the UK's number-two provider of digital TV services.
CHINA: France under pressure to pull the plug on Falun Gong TV
Beijing is putting pressure on France to knock broadcasting by Falun Gong members to the mainland off air
Set up by Falun Gong supporters, New Tang Dynasty Television started broadcasting to the mainland on Eutelsat's W5 satellite in April. Eutelsat is a French-registered company.
"We're afraid that the broadcast will be cut off due to Beijing's pressure," said a station spokeswoman.
"We know that the Chinese ambassador and diplomats have been meeting with the French government, with our commercial partner Eutelsat.
"This is a test case for freedom of expression."
Falun Gong has been banned on the mainland as an "evil cult" since 1999.
The mainland has already had some success against the station. Media association Reporters Sans Frontieres said that three days after the station started broadcasting on a satellite owned by the NSS company based in the Netherlands, NSS encrypted the signal following threats of economic sanctions against the company by Beijing.
The Chinese embassy in Paris declined to comment on the latest case.
Eutelsat, one of the world's leading satellite companies whose 24 satellites provide coverage to nearly 90 per cent of the world's population, also declined comment.
The French Foreign Ministry confirmed that Beijing had contacted it about the station.
But a Foreign Ministry spokesman said: "It is an issue for [France's] Supreme Audiovisual Council, which is an independent administration that takes its decisions independently."
The council, which issued a broadcasting licence to the station on March 30, said it had not been contacted by either China or the French Foreign Ministry about the station.
"The [council] has issued its authorisation to the channel. There is no going backwards on our part," said a spokeswoman.
But council officials privately say it is likely the station will be knocked off Eutelsat's W5 satellite.
"Eutelsat is likely to interrupt [the station's] broadcasts to China," said a Supreme Audiovisual Council official.
(Craigs comment, Eutelsat at 70.5E Ku band to Asia)
Conexant Releases Cable, Satellite STB Designs
Broadband player Conexant Systems today released two new digital video broadcast (DVB) cable and satellite set-top box (STB) reference designs.
The DVB cable platform is based on Conexant’s CX24147 TV decoder IC, an integrated design meant to enable manufacturers to reduce bill-of-material costs for basic cable STB receivers, can receive and process DVB signals over cable. The CX24147 includes an integrated voltage-controlled crystal oscillator, system clock generation from a single crystal and high quality 10-bit video digital-to-analog converters that support direct drive of video output connectors without the need for additional buffering, Conexant said.
The satellite reference design was developed for high-performance, low-cost STB receivers worldwide and is based on Conexant’s CX24142 single-chip direct broadcast satellite TV decoder IC and CX24109 silicon tuner to provide a complete solution. The CX24142 includes also an integrated QPSK demodulator and FEC decoder, and DiSEqC 2.x support for two-way communication between the STB and low noise block. The CX24109 satellite tuner is based on a proven direct-conversion, Zero-IF architecture, and includes an integrated low noise amplifier, an integrated variable baseband filter that provides optimal interference rejection, and an integrated local oscillator with on-chip voltage-controlled oscillator and synthesizer that is meant to further reduce the overall cost of a complete set-top box.
Both reference designs include schematics, layout, a costed bill-of-material, software drivers, real-time operating system, user interface, electronic program guide and documentation. The reference designs also include support for various middleware, along with SmartCard or DVB-CI based conditional access systems, the company said.
“By providing reference designs with everything needed to jump-start product development, manufacturers can create complete, cost-effective solutions that can be brought to market much more quickly than if they had to design their products from scratch," said Jeff Crosby, VP of set-top box products for Conexant, in a statement. "Based on our leading-edge integrated circuits and packaged with essential software, these designs greatly reduce design time and product costs, allowing the manufacturer to be more competitive in the consumer electronics market."
SATELLITE Stations: Companies vie for TV channels (Thailand)
But can the PRD give away more channels?
Many companies, including Media of Media, are interested in seeking a satellite TV licence from the Public Relations Department (PRD), which still has three satellite channels in its pocket, an industry source said.
But if the PRD decides to award such licences the deal will add heat to flame, since an independent regulatory body, the National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) has not yet been set up to distribute or regulate public airwaves.
The source said Media of Media and RK Media Holding Plc have expressed interest in acquiring satellite TV licences.
Media of Media is a political connected production house. RK Media is a major provincial radio channel operator.
Media of Media’s senior executives have admitted that the company is interested in obtaining a licence, but RK Media’s chief executive Paisal Sricharatchanya, said his company has no plans to ask for a satellite TV license at the moment.
He added he would not say anything if his company changed its mind in the future.
“We have studied the legal issues concerning the NBC,” he added.
Secretary general of the Campaign for Popular Democracy, Suriyasai Katasila, wondered if the PRD would violate the frequency allocation law if it grants licenses to any companies without waiting for the NBC.
By NBC law, no agency can issue new frequency licenses or create new TV stations during this period, when theNBC is still being formed.
The TV industry source said that that while many companies are interested in obtaining PRD licenses during the NBC’s nascent period, some have ceased their efforts due to legal concerns
However, recently the PRD divided the existing free TV license of Channel TV 11 to Thaidaydotcom, controlled by M Group, and production house Brave Heart.
By granting new licences, the free TV station iTV, owned by Shin Corp Plc, would have grounds to argue that it deserves to get the annual concession payment reduction as granted by the Arbitration Court since it is facing competition from new comers, said a veteran TV industry source.
The Court ruled early this year to grant iTV a total concession fee cut of Bt17 billion after iTV put up a case that it faced growing competition.
iTV asked for the reduction from the Prime Minister’s Office by referring to a clause in its contract that allows it to reduce concession fees if it faces new competition, or cable TV operators that cancan run advertising on their programmes.
The Prime Minister’s Office later asked the Administrative Court to override the Arbitration Court’s ruling.
“The satellite TV channels can also run commercials. iTV can exploit their cases to support its reduction of the concession fee,” the industry source said.
He said since the PRD has many satellite channels available, and many companies have rushed to it to ask for satellite TV licences.
Initially the department leased one satellite channel from Thaicom 2 satellite of Shin Satellite Plc before switching to Thaicom 3 satellite, which can technically expand from one channel to eight channels.
Currently the department uses two channels and still has three left.
E! Networks enters Singapore, Indonesia
MUMBAI: The Los Angeles-based producer and distributor of entertainment news and lifestyle-related programming E! Networks is aggressively pursuing its South East Asia expansion plans. The channel has inked a deal to launch its 24-hour entertainment channel in Singapore and has expanded its reach in Indonesia.
The channel will be added to StarHub CableVision's new digital platform in Singapore. Meanwhile, E! Networks has signed DTH carriage deals with Indovision and Kabelvision in Indonesia.
StarHub senior VP of cable TV services Sandie Lee is quoted in media reports as saying, "Having one of the most avid movie going audiences in the world, we strongly believe that E! will satisfy the local viewers who are very keen to keep in touch with the very latest in Hollywood and in the scene of entertainment."
"E! continues to be the preeminent source for celebrity and lifestyle-themed programming, a genre that travels well especially in the Asian market, and complements viewers' fascination with movies and celebrities," said Kevin MacLellan, the senior VP of international at E! Networks.
National holiday due to it being my birthday so no update today.
Live chat tonight 9pm NZ and 8.30pm Syd time in the chatroom.
Indovision test signal? Rumours of them moving to NSS6
Try Nss6 11634H, 26245 2/3 Possibly S.E Asia Beam. ( please report)
Something named RNW 198 is now listed on B1 12671V Sky NZ,Radio
My birthday tomorrow so perhaps no site update I might take the day off :-)
B3 page updated
From my Emails & ICQ
From Steve Hume
Latest I701 Ku Scan
10975H, 30000 16TV
11463H, 6765 2 Radio
11610H, 30000 22 TV, 5 Radio
11825H, 30000 16TV
It looks like 11825H, S/R 30000 might be a new batch of Channels coming
up for Canal.
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 12376 HOccasional Videoland Sports feeds on , SR 4150, FEC 7/8, NE Asian beam.
ST 1 88E 3582 H "Happy Channel" has left .TBL Movies and TBL Xxx have replaced Xing Kong and Hot Channel on PIDs 40/41 and 42/43, Viaccess.
ST 1 88E 12660 V "Asia FM" has started on , Fta, SR 2230, FEC 3/4, APID 6225.
Insat 2E 83E 3615 V "Jaya TV" has left , moved to 3593 V.
Telstar 10 76.5E 3652 H "TV Lanka Channel 1-2" are now encrypted.
Top QC for pay-TV case
ONE of Australia's best legal brains, commercial barrister Allan Myers QC, will lead the Seven Network's $2 billion-plus legal action against pay-TV group Foxtel and others next year.
Seven has been using numerous barristers in the preliminary hearings to date, but The Australian understands that Mr Myers will be arguing Seven's case when the epic trial begins in Sydney on March 7 next year.
The celebrated QC, who was recently estimated by BRW magazine to have amassed a $120 million fortune and charges between $10,000 and $12,000 a day, has been advising Seven on issues relating to the case before the action was launched in late 2002.
The trial is expected to be the largest in Australian media history, with many of the country's top media executives expected to appear.
Among the defendants are pay-TV group Foxtel and its owners News Limited (owner of The Australian and NEWS.com.au), Telstra and Kerry Packer's Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd.
Other defendants include the Fox Sports pay-TV channel, the AFL, the National Rugby League, the Ten Network and Optus.
Seven has filed its confidential list of proposed witnesses and their statements and the defendants must file theirs by the end of July.
Seven's witnesses are expected to include chief executive David Leckie (who as the Nine Network's former chief executive led that network's push for the AFL's broadcasting rights) and Steve Wise.
Mr Wise was previously Seven's head of new media and investments, the division responsible for creating its C7 pay-TV sports channel. C7's demise was one of the triggers behind Seven initiating the legal proceedings.
Mr Wise has since taken a special projects role at Australian Capital Equity, the private company of Seven's major owner Kerry Stokes, and moved to Adelaide.
Seven is alleging numerous breaches of the Trade Practices Act, saying the defendants conspired to keep C7 out of the pay-TV market.
Seven alleges the defendants acted anti-competitively to prevent C7 gaining the pay-TV rights to the AFL and other sports.
The defendants have said they will vigorously defend the action and the Federal Court has set aside up to six months for the trial.
The lawyers are expected back in court this Friday for further arguments on confidentiality and access to documents.
Broker UBS recently increased its expectation for the cost of Seven's action next year from $10 million to $17 million.
But while Seven's lawyers continue the legal battle, the network's programmers face seemingly larger obstacles after finishing third in the ratings last week.
Nine scored 29.5 per cent of the all people prime time ratings, with Ten second on 24.9 per cent and Seven on 24.5 per cent.
Firm linked to Thai PM's son to list
Local production house and media broker Brave Heart International Plc, which is reportedly associated with Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's son Panthongtae, will today announce its listing on the Market for Alternative Investment (MAI).
A TV-industry source said the company, which had capitalisation of Bt50 million, would announce its listing plan today.
He added that there was a report that the company was interested in seeking a deal with Channel 5 to replace TV Global Network (TGN) as the broadcaster of Thai TV programmes worldwide.
TGN is the satellite TV subsidiary of Channel 5 and broadcasts programmes to 170 countries.
It leases the satellite signal for Bt200 million per year from Shin Satellite Plc, which was founded by Thaksin.
Last year TGN made Bt70 million in revenue.
The source said Brave Heart was expected to gain a better satellite-signal |leasing deal from ShinSat than TGN since| it reportedly had relations with Panthong-tae.
Panthongtae's businesses range from a media broker to an animation and TV-programme production house and a luxury handset distribution firm.
His advertising company How Come Entertainment is interested in managing advertising for the tunnel section of Thailand's first subway, scheduled to begin operation next month.
Uzbekistan to launch two satellites with Russia assistance
TASHKENT, June 8 (Itar-Tass) - Uzbekistan plans to launch two space satellites with the assistance of Russian partners, an official in the Uzbek state-run Space Research Agency (Uzbekcosmos) told Itar-Tass on Tuesday.
The Uzbekcosmos official explained that the cost of each satellite would fluctuate within the range of 60-70 million US dollars, depending on the business situation on the market of electronic equipment.
One communications satellite and one satellite for the remote sensing of the Earth are to be lofted into space by means of the advanced Russian space rocket system Angara.
The Uzbekcosmos official pointed out that the two Uzbek satellites are to be launched under the Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2001within the framework of mutual cooperation between the Uzbekcosmos and the Russian M. Khrunichev State Space Research and Production Centre in the development of Uzbek satellites.
Intelsat in talks with private investors
Intelsat, a Bermuda-based satellite services group that abandoned plans to list two weeks ago, is in talks with several financial buyers about a deal which could be worth up to $5bn.
An auction, being conducted by investment banks Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch, is gathering momentum after Blackstone, the US buy-out group, paid $956m for New Skies Satellites on the weekend.
It also comes as private equity groups are rapidly consolidating the global satellites sector, much as they did with the telephone directories sector.
Including Intelsat, private equity groups will have been involved in deals worth some $10bn in little more than six months.
Bidders for Intelsat, 24 per cent owned by Lockheed Martin, the US defence group, include: a joint approach from Madison Dearborn and Apollo; Bain Capital; and Thomas H Lee.
Blackstone and Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, two large US houses that have both done "platform" deals in the sector, are also interested.
The auction may also provide one of the few examples of European private equity houses undertaking a large deal in the US market.
Permira and Apax Partners, two of Europe's biggest private equity groups, last December bought Inmarsat of the UK for $1.54bn. KKR paid $3.5bn for PanAmSat, the largest US commercial satellite operator, in April.
A source close to the auction said a deal could be completed within months.
"Intelsat has hired advisers for a sale and it is likely to go to a financial sponsor," he said. "They want to get a sale done quickly because the high-yield markets are becoming more expensive, making it more difficult for buy-out houses to fund deals."
A banker who has worked on a number of satellite deals said Intelsat would take the LBO route.
Based on the mid-point of its float range, Intelsat had an enterprise value of about $4.2bn. The banker said that a sale should command a higher multiple, implying a "rough" valuation of $4.5bn-$5bn.
Lawrence Guffey, senior managing director of Blackstone, would not comment on the group's interest in Intelsat, but said: "We see continued consolidation opportunities in the industry in which we might be able to participate. New Skies is an attractive asset with a strong management team in a sector we expect to recover in the mid-term."
New Skies was spun out of Intelsat in 1998.
Intelsat became a private company in 2001 after 37 years as an intergovernmental organisation. Apart from Lockheed Martin, a number of telecoms groups have stakes in the business.
Intelsat has more than 600 telecoms service providers and broadcasters as customers. It provides "connectivity solutions" for businesses and governments for international communication.
Microsoft and STMicroelectronics Team to Enable High-Definition Windows Media 9 Content for Consumers on the Leading Set-Top Box and DVD Hardware Platforms
From Press Release
Agreements Enable Development of New Class of Integrated Circuits
REDMOND, Wash. and GENEVA, June 8 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM - News) and Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT - News) today announced that the two companies are working together to develop a series of new integrated circuit components for manufacturers of consumer electronics products. These components will extend the reach of high-quality, secure Windows Media® 9 Series content, in both standard and high definition, to a wide range of popular devices such as set-top boxes and DVD players. Support of Windows Media 9 Series in products such as these means consumers will be able to easily enjoy the high audio and video quality that Windows Media provides.
(Logo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000822/MSFTLOGO )
STMicroelectronics, one of the world's largest chip manufacturers and an acknowledged leader in delivering silicon solutions for digital set-top boxes, will supply these new components to consumer electronics manufacturers to enable fast market delivery of appliances such as set-top boxes, DVD players, digital video recorders (DVRs), Portable Media Centers, home-networking devices and more. The new STMicroelectronics integrated circuit components will support a range of Windows Media 9 Series technologies to help ensure the broadest possible range of applications. In addition to standard formats, this support includes the following audio and video technologies:
* Windows Media Audio 9, which provides playback of high-quality two-
channel audio with remarkable compression efficiency
* Windows Media Audio 9 Professional, which delivers 5.1 or even 7.1
channels of discrete digital surround sound at bit rates as low as
128 kbps, and supports 24-bit resolution and 96 kHz sample rates to
deliver better-than-CD quality sound
* Windows Media Video 9 (including VC-9), which delivers high video
quality at all bit rates and even supports high-definition video,
with up to six times the resolution of DVD-video, at approximately
one-third the bit rate of MPEG-2
"Our agreement with Microsoft is a key step toward bringing high-quality digital media to consumers through any entertainment device or broadcast network they choose," said Philippe Geyres, corporate vice president and general manager of the Consumer and Microcontrollers Group at STMicroelectronics. "By adding support for Microsoft's Windows Media 9 Series in the next generation of our decoders, we will provide consumer electronics manufacturers with a stable and cost-effective platform on which to display high-quality Windows Media content in the home."
Microsoft's digital media software, including Windows Media 9 Series, already enables consumers to experience a wide variety of high-quality content on the PC and on a broad range of consumer electronic devices. STMicroelectronics will play a key role in extending that ecosystem by also supporting new products and technologies in its offerings such as the Windows® XP Media Center Edition Extender Technologies, Windows Media Connect and the Microsoft® TV Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) delivery solution.
Using STMicroelectronics' new integrated circuit components in affordable terrestrial, satellite, cable and IP set-top boxes will enable broadcasters and network operators to deliver more high-quality content directly to the living room, thanks to the compression efficiency of Windows Media 9 Series, thereby increasing the potential audience and improving the economics of content delivery to consumers.
"Consumers want seamless access to high-quality digital media without worrying about format support or other potential incompatibilities," said Will Poole, senior vice president of Windows Client Business at Microsoft. "Device manufacturers need to bring new products to market quickly, with support for formats that offer the highest quality and that have broad industry adoption. By teaming with ST, Microsoft is taking the next step in bringing exciting new scenarios such as high-definition video to new areas of the home, with solutions that work for both consumers and device manufacturers."
STMicroelectronics is a global leader in developing and delivering semiconductor solutions across the spectrum of microelectronics applications. An unrivalled combination of silicon and system expertise, manufacturing strength, Intellectual Property (IP) portfolio and strategic partners positions the Company at the forefront of System-on-Chip (SOC) technology and its products play a key role in enabling today's convergence markets. The Company's shares are traded on the New York Stock Exchange, on Euronext Paris and on the Milan Stock Exchange. In 2003, the Company's net revenues were $7.24 billion and net earnings were $253 million. Further information on ST can be found at www.st.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
NOTE: Microsoft, Windows Media and Windows are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
Times defers biz channel to next year
NEW DELHI: A business channel can wait till next year. The Times of India Group is more interested in an entertainment channel to be followed by a spiritual channel this year, both of which would carry a nominal subscription fee.
Pointing out that the plans for a business channel have been deferred for the next year Bennett, Coleman and Co Ltd MD Vineet Jain told indiantelevision.com today, "The entertainment channel should be on air by November. We would like that it is followed by a spiritual channel."
Asked whether the two channels being planned by the Times group, for starters, would be free to air, Jain said that since they would digital, decoder boxes would have to be distributed. "There would also be a nominal price put on both the channels," he said, adding, may be, both the channels are clubbed together and sold for distribution purpose.
While the entertainment channel will be called Zoom, names for the spiritual and business channels haven't seen finalised. Both the proposed TV channels would beam off PAS-10 satellite.
Without specifying the format of Zoom, the channel to be launched in the last quarter of 2004, Jain said that it would be a general entertainment channel where the language would be 'Hinglish' (a combination of Hindi and English) as "the primary target audience would be in the metros."
Asked about the format of Zoom, Jain retorted that those plans could not be disclosed so early. "Even the ad sales team of ours is not aware of the content and format yet," he added.
Jain was confident that there is a market for the type of entertainment channel that the Times group is planning.
Meanwhile, he also confirmed that Arnab Goswami, formerly of NDTV 24x7, has joined the Times' TV venture as head of programming for the business channel. The group is also looking for Goswami's counterparts for the entertainment and spiritual channels.
TVNZ are doing a special event Tuesday on one of their digital test channels in the mux on B1. I have to wonder how many will be aware of it though. I feel they need to to take Tv2 off of Fv1 and at least put up a static Info screen advertising the event or run a scroller onscreen on Fv2 and Fv3. Otherwise its seems a lot of trouble to go to for the few that may accidently tune in and see it. It should be rememberd the status of the TVNZ Fv channels are still "test services" and that includes both CCTV9 and Dwelle.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Steve Draper
TVNZ Digital Event
From Ric Carlyon of TVNZ:
We have waited 121 years for it, so TVNZ's Free To Air
DTH service, FreeVue 1, will be marking the Transit of
Venus this coming Tuesday, the 8th. From 1550 hrs the
channel will show appropriate programming, including
"Captain's Log" which reminds us about Captain Cook's
voyage of discovery immediately after he observed the
Transit in 1769. And the winning videotapes in a
school's competition will be shown.
Students were asked to illustrate what the Transit
meant to them. We see the winners being farewelled
last week, en route to the UK as part of their prize
to observe the Transit there.
At about 1700 hrs the channel will join a NASA link to
watch (weather permitting!), and have explained, the
beginning and first hour or so of the Transit. (END)
From Satmax (NZ)
Here's a photo of a recent install we did at Arthur's Pass (Southern NZ, near Christchurch)
Yes the customer requested it to go on the wall so they could "play" if necessary.
TV7 change of frequency
Telkom1 TV7 has changed to 4076H sr6000 3/4.
From Steve Hume
From the Dish
PAS 8 166E 4140 H "A Disney Channel test card" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1560/1520.
PAS 8 166E 12686 H "Hunan TV" has started on , Fta, PIDs 2110/2120.
AsiaSat 4 122E 3881 H The Chinese mux has left
AsiaSat 4 122E 12580 H "ERA News" has started on , Fta, SR 3000, FEC 5/6, PIDs 4194/4195.
Telkom 1 108E 4084 H New PIDs for Trans TV on : 33/36.
Worldsat 1 108E 12411 V "HBS, Human TV and CMC TV" have started on , Fta, SR 11110,FEC 5/6, PIDs 4194/4195, 4245/4246 and 4370/4371, NE Asian beam.
Express AM 11 96.5E Test carriers on 3925 R, 3975 R, 3975 L and 4125 R.
Express AM 11 96.5E
Test carriers on 3875 R and 3875 L.
(Vadim with 200 cm in Latvia)
NSS 6 95E 11634 H The New Skies promo and the test card have left .
NSS 6 95E 12533 V "The DISH TV" mux has left again.
NSS 6 95E 12647 H The test card has left .
Yamal 201 90E The REN TV mux has moved from 4029 R to 4041 R, clear, SR 20255, FEC 3/4.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "Rainbow Channel 1" is now encrypted.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3840 V New PIDs for Punjab Today and the Sadhna Super Channel tests on :2081/2082 and 4129/4130.
Telstar 10 76.5E 3652 H "TV Lanka Channel 1-2" are Fta.
Telstar 10 76.5E 12408 V "Unique Satellite TV has replaced Unique Commercial" on , Viaccess,PIDs 592/593.
PAS 10 68.5E "New Africa Network" has left 4099 V and 12687 V, replaced by a Telemedia test card.
PAS 10 68.5E "The Telemedia test cards" have left 4099 V and 12687 V.Telly Track is now in clear.
PAS 10 68.5E 12520 V "DD National and DD News" have started on , Fta, SR 3125, FEC 7/8,PIDs 512/650 and 513/660, Indian beam.
Foxtel offers freebies for its digital service
Foxtel has resorted to offers of free installation to attract more subscribers to its 2 1/2-month-old digital pay TV service.
The pay TV provider is for the month of June offering a $140 saving on installation for people whose homes have already been wired for a Foxtel cable or satellite connection. It is also offering free installation for customers who purchase a Sanyo television at either Target or Coles Myer .
The catch is that would-be customers must, at least for the first month, opt for one of Foxtel's more expensive digital TV packages. They range from $68.90 to $94.95 a month. After one month, subscribers can if they wish drop back to Foxtel's entry level offer of $48.95 a month.
The loss-making Foxtel is facing claims that only 63,000 of its 250,000 digital pay TV subscribers are new customers. Foxtel has declined to reveal how many of its digital pay TV subscribers are, in fact, first-time pay TV users.
Foxtel corporate affairs director Mark Furness said on Friday that Foxtel intended to quickly grow its business by using a range of creative measures.
``What we are doing is no different to mobile phone providers offering zero-cost phones under some deals or newspapers offering similar special offers to build subscriptions," he said.
Meanwhile, Foxtel has also had to change the way it markets its digital service following intervention by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission .
The competition regulator received several undertakings from Foxtel regarding the way it markets its Box Office service after the Australian Video Retailers Association complained. AVRA was concerned Foxtel was misleading consumers by suggesting its Box Office service premiered movies at the same time as the videos became available in outlets like Video Ezy, Civic Video and Blockbuster.
Foxtel has disputed the claim its sales people have made such assertions. Foxtel's executive director, content, product development and delivery , Patrick Delany , said last month that the company's sales staff had not told consumers that movies were available on Foxtel Box Office and in video/DVD stores at the same time.
Mr Delany said Foxtel staff knew about the various release ``windows" for movies and the fact that movies did not appear on Foxtel Box Office until six months after they were distributed to video/DVD retailers.
Blackstone to acquire Dutch satellite co.
NEW YORK -- Private equity investor The Blackstone Group agreed Sunday to acquire Dutch satellite operator New Skies Satellites N.V. in a cash deal valued at $956 million.
New Skies, based in The Hague, Netherlands, operates five satellites that carry video, voice and data communications. It has a fifth in development.
The deal, worth $7.96 per share, represents a 14 percent premium on New Skies shares since April 28, a day before the company said it was exploring alternatives for its business. The company's U.S.-traded shares closed at $8.01 Friday on the New York Stock Exchange.
New Skies' board has approved the deal, which is also subject to shareholder and regulatory approvals. The sale is expected to close at the end of the year, or early in 2005, the companies said in a statement.
"With the strong backing of Blackstone and its extensive experience investing in, and partnering with, telecommunications and media companies, we will have the best possible foundation on which to grow our business in the coming years," said New Skies CEO Daniel S. Goldberg.
New York-based Blackstone has raised $32 billion, with about $14 billion in private equity investments.
The deal comes less than two months after DirecTV Group agreed to sell its 80.5 percent stake in PanAmSat Corp., which operates 29 satellites, for $3.55 billion to buyout firm KKR.
Tycoons' firms battle for lucrative pay-TV market
Malaysia's 11th-richest man takes on country's No 2 tycoon Ananda Krishnan by launching 50 interactive channels
KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's eleventh richest man Vincent Tan Chee Yioun is set to battle the country's number two tycoon, Ananda Krishnan, to capture a slice of the multi-million-dollar pay television market.
DUEL OF BIG BUCKS: Using 'homegrown' wireless technology, Tan Sri Tan's (above) MiTV intends to poach some of subscribers to Tan Sri Ananda's (below) Astro. -- NEW STRAITS TIMES
Tan Sri Tan's MiTV Corporation yesterday announced it will launch 50 channels of 'interactive pay-TV' by the year's end that will include videos and games on demand, instant messaging and e-mail.
The MiTV move pits it against Malaysia's current sole provider of pay-TV operated by satellite TV firm Astro All Asia Networks Plc, owned by Tan Sri Ananda.
Astro offers 48 channels, including two movie-on-demand channels. It has nearly 1.4 million subscribers with small satellite dishes on their roofs or balconies for reception.
Astro recorded a net profit of RM12 million (S$5.4 million) for the year that ended in January, and plans to add some 60 more channels by next year.
But MiTV says it is not deterred by its bigger rival as the market is large enough for both.
'There are 5.5 million TV households in Malaysia, part of which Astro has a market share. The saturation point has not been reached, far from it,' said Mr Jonathan Chan, MiTV's executive director and chief operating officer.
Although its sports and news channels will duplicate what is already offered by Astro, he said MiTV plans to add other 'new and as yet unseen' Malaysia channels, but declined to be specific.
'I would like to say stay tuned, as we are still negotiating,' Mr Chan told a news conference, when asked what type of channels the company would offer.
'We intend to convert viewers into participants. You would be able to interact with the screen,' he added.
Tan Sri Tan, named by Malaysia Business magazine as the 11th richest Malaysian with assets of RM1.14 billion, owns 40 per cent of MiTV.
Tan Sri Ananda was the second richest, with RM12.87 billion, the magazine said in its February issue.
The other majority MiTV shareholder is company founder Datuk Rosman Ridzwan, who owns 40 per cent. Unnamed shareholders own the remaining 20 per cent.
Datuk Rosman said MiTV would break even with 180,000 subscribers, some of whom it intended to steal from Astro.
'If, say, 13 per cent of Astro's existing subscriber base of 1.4 million subscribes to MiTV, we would have achieved our targeted break-even point,' the company's news release said.
Unlike the satellite technology used by Astro, MiTV uses a 'homegrown' wireless technology developed by Datuk Rosman and his team.
Research and development, and investments in the company cost RM100 million.
MiTV uses what it calls Internet protocol over ultra-high frequency (UHF) for broadcast.
Simply put, the wireless technology delivers the programme right to your TV set via a normal UHF antenna. Access is controlled by a MiTV code for each subscriber.
MiTV officials said it would charge subscribers a flat rate but declined to say how much. Astro charges a one-time installation fee of RM100 and subscription fees of between RM49.95 and RM124.95.
ESS extends reach of the bat and ball game in Singapore with new deal
MUMBAI: This is an initiative through which ESPN Star Sports (ESS) is hoping to connect further with the Indian expat population in Singapore.
The broadcaster and Starhub Cable Vision have announced that they had reached an agreement to bring live ESS cricket to fans.
While not a full 24-hour service, the new cricket channel will provide coverage of Test matches and ODIs.
Second pay-TV to offer 50 channels
Malaysian television viewers may be spoilt for choice soon, with a second pay-television operator planning to offer up to 50 channels by December.
Industry sources expect the MiTV Corporation to charge a flat rate of around RM80 per month for the package.
Datuk Rosman Ridzwan, the company’s chief executive officer, said the service would cover the Klang Valley first and would go nationwide within 18 months after its launch.
Prominent businessman Tan Sri Vincent Tan is a substantial backer of MiTV.
It will rival the current sole pay-television operator in the country, Astro All Asia Networks service (Astro), which is owned by magnate Tan Sri T. Ananda Krishnan.
MiTV officials say there is still room in the domestic market for another pay-television operator.
"The current penetration rate is about 20-25 per cent. There’s still a lot of room to grow," Jonathan Chan, MiTV’s chief operating officer, said.
The company released few details of its plans at the Press conference today.
MiTV’s technology platform is based on the concept of amalgamating Internet protocol standards and digital video broadcasting (DVB) standards.
This technology is believed to be much cheaper than the use of satellite for mass television broadcasts.
Besides offering 50 television channels, MiTV also plans to include several basic interactive services in its subscription package.
It is unclear if consumers will have to buy a special decoder if they subscribe to the service.
MiTV’s roll-out plan calls for the pay-television service to be introduced in the Klang Valley in December this year with the service being extended to the northern region of Peninsular Malaysia in six months.
Within 18 months of the Klang Valley launch, the entire country including Sabah and Sarawak will have access to the service.
"We have installed six transmission towers in the Klang Valley each with a transmission radius of about 20 kilometres," MiTV vice-president Rahmat Yahaya said.
ISRO to launch EU satellite
The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) has secured a $ 10 million contract to launch a satellite for the European Union.
An agreement has been signed in this respect and the spacecraft would be launched onboard India's Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle towards the end of next year, ISRO Chairman G Madhavan Nair told reporters.
ISRO had earlier launched small payloads of foreign players as "piggyback" but this would be the first time that it would be using PSLV for the sole purpose of launching an overseas satellite.
The EU satellite, being produced by one of the Italian companies, would be the sole passenger on board the PSLV.
Nair also said that negotiations were on to launch a Singapore satellite, but added it had not been finalised.
The proposed launch of the EU satellite is seen as a result of ISRO's push towards global space marketing.
According to Nair, Resourcesat (ISRO's satellite) products are being sold right across the world, and the space agency is now in discussions with European companies regarding selling other products. (PTI)
ISRO to launch Edusat in August
The Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO) is gearing up to launch India's first dedicated education satellite (Edusat) in geo-synchronous orbit in August.
"Preparations to launch the Edusat have commenced. With all going well, we will be launching the satellite in August from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh using the Geo-synchronous Launch Vehcile (GSLV-D3)," ISRO chairman G. Madhavan Nair told reporters here Saturday.
The two-tonne Edusat will have a total of 12 transponders, including 5C transponders exclusively for transmitting educational programs.
The Rs.20-billion ($444 million) exclusive satellite project will be utilised to demonstrate the concept of multicasting interactive multimedia for the educational sector.
The Rs.1-billion spacecraft will have multiple beams, with one Ku-band transponder covering the entire footprint of the country, while 5 Ku-band will provide spot beams directed in four different regions (north, east, south and west) and northeast region.
The space agency is also in discussions with about 10 countries to associate with the Edusat mission. "We expect 2-3 proposals from these countries to be incorporated with the project," Nair said.
Nair was interacting with the media on the sidelines of a seminar on "Integrated Urban Environmental Management", organised by the Environment Association of Bangalore and sponsored by ISRO to mark the World Environment Day.
Star to launch 2 Hindi channels, eyes South
Star Utsav to be launched next week, while Star One will be debut later in the year.
The action on the small screen is set to quicken. Three years after launching its last channel, Star Gold, the Rupert Murdoch-controlled Star India is launching two new Hindi channels Star Utsav, to be launched next week, and a channel that may be called Star One, later in the year.
The two new channels will take the number of Star channels in India to eight, excluding channels such as Channel V that Star distributes, and the south India-based Vijay TV.
More channels are on the drawing board but Star India Chief Executive Office Peter Mukerjea says it is premature to discuss them.
The broadcasting company is also eyeing a major foray into south India, where it doesn’t have a major direct presence. But its direct-to-home (DTH) joint venture with the Tatas will require content in south Indian languages. So it is mulling its options alliances, buying a company and so on.
Mukerjea conceded that with its Hindi programming, Star India largely remained a north Indian phenomenon. He said south India accounted for half the cable and satellite television viewing market, and that Star India’s revenues and profits had been growing by about 30 per cent and to maintain this growth rate in the years ahead Star had to move into south India.
In a wide-ranging discussion on Friday at the Star office in Mumbai, Mukerjea explained, in the context of the new channels, that Star India wanted to jack up ad rates but couldn’t do so because the rates of its competitors, Sony Entertainment Television and Zee Networks, were so far behind Star’s rates.
“We want to be number one, number two and number three, followed by the others,” he said.
Star Utsav is to be a free-to-air channel whose programming will focus on classic Star programmes that have already been aired on Star Plus in the past, but still command a high brand recall. These will include ‘Saans’, ‘Palchin, Son Pari’, ‘Tu Tu Main Main’, ‘Musafir Hoon Yaaron’ and ‘Kahin Kissii Roz’.
“We found that there was a big demand for these serials as we received offers from people to buy the rights to air these serials,” Mukerjea said.
Star One, on the other hand, is aimed at upscale viewers in the metropolitan cities with high disposable incomes. So the programming and graphics will be contemporary.
“We find it difficult to get some kinds of ads such as car ads on Star Plus. We then identified a genre that associates itself with Hindi programming but demands an urban and youthful touch. The programming of Star One is purely designed keeping this in mind,” Mukerjea said.
Both channels are part of a grand gambit to garner additional revenues. A 30-second prime time spot on Star Utsav will cost Rs 1.27 lakh, 90 per cent less than the Rs 15 lakh for a similar spot on flagship channel Star Plus.
That makes Star Utsav far more affordable to regional advertisers who can’t afford advertising on Star Plus. And since old programmes are being recycled, Star India will bear little additional cost, apart from uplinking costs.
Star One, on the other hand, won’t be a free-to-air channelit will be a pay channel, positioned almost on a par with Star Plus, and the ad rates are likely to be high.
Some observers interpret the launching of Star One as a response to Sony’s strategy of targeting the 25-35 age group through serials like Jassi Jaisi Koi Nahin’and Yeh Meri Life Hai, positioned against Star’s prime time serials like Kyunki Saans Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi’ and Kahani Ghar Ghar Ki.
Whatever the case, Star India is clearly determined to set the cash registers ringing even more loudly.
No update Sundays
No updates Saturdays
Sorry about todays update as usual on Fridays its late and there is very little content. Just one of those days.....
From my Emails & ICQ
Nothing to report
From the Dish
Optus B3 152E 12525 V "Daystar TV" has started on , Fta, PIDs 2060/2020.
Optus B3 152E The God Channel has left 12501 H and 12525 V.
AsiaSat 4 122E Occasional ERA feeds on 12565 H, 12570 H, 12575 H and 12580 H, SR 3000,FEC 5/6.
AsiaSat 4 122E Occasional ERA feeds on 12586 H, SR 5900, FEC 5/6.
AsiaSat 4 122E 12274 V New SR for SpeedCast on : 6000.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3652 V Occasional feeds on , SR 4420, FEC 3/4.
AsiaStar 105.E Fox News Channel has started on 1475 L, clear, BCID 1308.The Hop, Orbit Rock and World Zone are now in clear.SRI English and RFI have left this mux.
Express AM 11 96.5E
Very strong test carriers on 3675 R.
(Vadim with 200 cm in Latvia)
Very strong test carriers on 3825 R.
(Alex with 150 cm in Vladivostok, Russia)
ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" is FTA again.
Insat 3C 74E 4121 H "DD North-East" is still on , PAL.
Iconz to offer rural broadband via satellite
Auckland-based ISP Iconz is to offer a satellite-based broadband internet service for rural users too remote to enjoy more direct connection via copper or terrestrial wireless. The system is likely to appeal to isolated communities and businesses rather than individuals, with rates likely to be high and initial setup expensive. On top of that, geostationary communications satellites orbit above the equator at an altitude of about 35,000km, introducing nearly a quarter of a second of latency into round-trip exchanges and requiring a view of the satellite unobstructed by hills. Despite all that, the system is likely to be seized on with enthusiasm by isolated users with no feasible alternative.
Zone Vision's reality TV launches on StarHub
Expanding its reach in Asia, Europe-based Zone Vision has signed a carriage deal with Singapore's new digital cable service, StarHub.
"Since opening our Singapore office last year, we have celebrated the launch of Reality TV in the Philippines, Hong Kong, India, Pakistan and Indonesia," said Mark David, Senior Vice President, Group Sales and Marketing. "StarHub is a great partner and we are very excited to be among the first to be included on their new digital cable service."
PAKISTAN: Government Bans Five TV Networks
Agency orders cable companies to stop carrying the networks, which lack licenses and in some cases are described as offering pornographic content. Hampering signal piracy is also cited as a motivation.
ISLAMABAD -- The Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (Pemra) has banned Tele Track, MM, MM2, M-Net and Series channels in the country. Pemra said that they were not included in the eligible channels' list issued by the media regulatory authority.
The channels have not sought registration with Pemra which is a prerequisite for landing rights. It said that the channels' software also included objectionable pornographic content and encourages moral turpitude which contravenes Code of Conduct of Pemra.
"These channels are shown by pirated decoder cards in various parts of the country. The principal of Multi-choice Africa have taken up the issue of piracy with Pemra and requested to adopt measures to stop piracy through TV channels," said a press release issued by Pemra on Wednesday.
In view of the persistent public demand, the press release said, the authority had decided to proscribe the five channels under section "27" of Pemra Ordinance. Pemra had issued a circular to all cable TV operators to stop the relay of the five channels from their networks.
The representative of Multi-choice Africa was asked to exclude Pakistan's land mass from their footprints, but they had some difficulties for the time being. Pemra warned that the telecasting the five channels would be an offence under section "33" of Pemra Ordinance to sell cards/decoders and relay, show, transmit those channels on cable TV, MMDS.
(Craigs comment, I would like to see them try and "remove" the Pas 10 Cband footprint!)
Express Am 11 is testing at 96.5E, check for signals circular pol
Someone in the chatroom on Tuesday night reported Express 6a at 80E 4125 Rhc at near locking on a 3M dish in Brisbane. Might be worth a look !
Satmagazine June issue is out at http://www.satmagazine.com
Jon's Asia Weekly
"From the mouth of babes"
It was not that long ago (read 5 years ago) the only TV we used to have here in the holiday home as it was then, was the local Thai TV via old rusty TV aerial. The kids did not like it that much although they understood it more than I did. VCD’s were the order of the day. I remember well the start of the slippery slope. We were all out shopping one day when the eldest daughter came up to me and said she wanted to get some more cartoons on VCD. I reminded her she had enough for half of Bangkok already, she replied “but they are all old Daddy”.
The wife commented it might be cheaper to get all the cartoons on cable TV as the girls could watch it any time they liked. I stood there in glee having thoughts along the lines of HBO, BBC, CNN and lots of sports, so nodded agreement. Then, you guessed it, we got the local cable TV and all of a sudden there was my three and five year old firmly planted front of the tele in the lounge room, watching Cartoon Network in Thai, and “no daddy can not watch the news, no sport Daddy, no movies Mummy, watch cartoons with us Daddy”.
This went on for a few months until I decided the Beeb, F1 and any Kiwi rugby was more important than what the two ankle biters wanted to watch.
Yep you guessed it, a second cable decoder was installed. So peace at last was restored or so I thought until I realized to my horror that my TV (one I brought over from Hong Kong) in the lounge did not do dual language from Thai originated programming, as the F1 and some Rugby are in both Thai and English. “Rats”, I thought, “what is going on here, I have a world standard TV”, it was after all a full NICAM system. As so often happens, this standard is not supported in this part of the world.
“So much for global standards” I thought opening the wallet again.
Later that day, a local 29” multi system TV, with local dual language capabilities and proudly put in the lounge. The old tele was relegated to the bedroom and the second decoder for the kids.
So along comes the first meeting of F1 and down to the lounge I ran 10 minutes prior to the start, but I forgot about the rug rats… They refused to budge without a fight, and to make matters worse their mum was on their side.
So after a quick TV swap, I was also relegated to the bedroom.
Some months later I browsing in a satellite shop. I was impressed with what they offered, and a sales pitch to die for, I brought a C Band system only to hear from them say here is your New Zealand TV, it is called “ABC” [Another story for another day]
Now a few years and a 1,000 plus channels later there are really only three channels used at home by the whole family, being ;
Disney, Nick and ABC AP or the “Humphrey B. Bear” channel as number two daughter calls it.
Having wired the house with satellite outlets in most rooms, channels 1, 2 ,3 on most receivers (and satellites for the matter) are always the kids channels.
Have you ever taken the time to see all the content on the satellites above you for your kids, or children in general?
Being in central Asia, our kids are fast becoming tri-lingual, so when you add all the English, Thai and Chinese children’s content / programming up, you find to your surprise like I did, that they are by far the best demographic catered for in the region.
There is a moral to the story fella’s, “ get the kids involved, that will get Mum and Grandma onside, and that gets YOU all the satellite kit YOU want”.
We had a big hunt across the lower Eastern reaches of the skies this week to find more KU content here in Bangkok and with Asian beams.
1. What we think was a test on a Superbird confirmed by several readers across the region on 12537 V S/R 18703 at 158 degrees. However I could not get any of my receivers to lock on it. As one person said “you just found the Optus backdoor”, who knows?
2. Confirmed on Superbird A 12410 V 21096
3. On PAS 8 KU another Thai channel (Temple Service or Dhammakaya) on 12462 H S/R 2222, this channel can also found on NSS6 and Thaicom 2 C Band
4. Want to see more Cricket and based here in Asia? Then check out the free to air “Ten Sports” feeds on SP Teleport also on PAS 8 KU FREQ: 12405
POL: H S/R: 2207 FEC: 3/4 These guys are doing a great job.
Have you read the customer service message on ST1 yet? For real, they have a one page customer service letter up there for you to read. Go on, do it, have a bit of fun. Looks like their encryption roulette is nearly over.
ITV in Thailand has made its long awaited move from Thaicom 1 to Thaicom 2/3, making all the local Thai channel available on one bird (Thaicom 2). We now have Channels 3, 5, 7 (all three of them in analog), 9, 11, ITV, TGN, MV TV (dubbed movies in Thai), I Learn (education TV), WTP and Dhammakaya all on the digital C Band.
PAS 2 is becoming more and more popular here as more and more of the people realize they can watch it even on a 7.5 foot dish.
Was in Cambodia this week and they see more than what we do when looking to the East. The lucky devils.
Dynasat released new firmware updates for their popular SilverBox II and IRD 7100, which can be found at http://www.dynasat.com/t_support.htm
Some of you may have read about the “NEW NEOTIONCRYPT FAILURE (06/01/04)” on a TV service frowned upon down under. If you are interested look at the following URL (does not effect the Australian Irdeto 2 users) zzz.thaimisc.com/freewebboard/php/vreply.php?user=boranphone&topic=5870 (Change the zzz to www)
HOT: in Cambodia 1.8 meter solid offset KU band dishes. They are everywhere.
Ever tried to line up the same sports channel of different satellites? We decided to do this very thing this week on two of the well known sports channels. We got four receivers, four TV’s and of course four dishes.
Same sports channel “name” on four satellites equals
1. Time delays of up to four to five minutes on the same content feed
2. Totally different content on the same channel name when compared to the other three satellites
3. Right channel totally wrong content name (well OK it was the right content but a different channel within the same group / provider it was a “2” rather than a “1” content being transmitted this is a good thing, very good)
Time to put that sports feed up on the apsattv.com web site, the Olympics are not far away, and with so many pre-qualifying matches being feed, it will make interesting viewing.
Euro 2004 is not far away. So get ready for some of the best soccer you will see for a few months.
Rumours are flying everywhere that Irdeto II is under heavy attack on many network fronts across the globe. Not to be out flanked, I noted a really good reply on one message board where an engineer from a nameless network suggesting shortly he will walk over to his box of tricks and change the “key management”, and went to say “do you think engineers are dumb? Enjoy your black screens”
Support your local network providers, people. What happens if you say for educational purposes buy an educational card for a network, and some of you are paying big bucks (noted one such educational card was selling for over GBP 300 300 pounds you do the math’s), and the local educational distributor up and vanishes? You get a lot of sad people, which no comeback, as they are all educational people themselves so the police or fraud squad can not help them. Where as, if they purchased the same service for real purposes from their local providers, they would all be happy campers right now.
From my Emails & ICQ
From Mark F
Feeds seen recently on Pas2
3942 Vert, 5632, French Open continues on the British Telecom channel
3795 Vert, 6111, Japanese Night Baseball
From the Dish
Optus B3 152E 12564 H Sydney Races TV on has changed name to TVN.
AsiaSat 4 122E 3881 H "CBN (Fta), OTV News & Entertainment Channel, OTV Arts & Entertainment Channel, OTV Music Channel and OTV Folk Opera Channel have started on SR 26500, FEC 3/4, PIDs 560/563 and 4176/4179-4224/4227.
Asiasat 4 122E 12580 H sr 3000 new signal East Asia beam?
Palapa C2 113E 4080 H "Ar-Rahman Channel" has left , replaced by a test card.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4140 V "Zee Music" is still FTA.
Express AM 11 96.5E 3525 L Strong test carriers on .
(DX Bozoth in Hungary)
NSS 6 95E 12688 H New SR for the TARBS World TV on : 28066.
NSS 6 95E 12535 V A DISH TV mux has started on , clear, SR 40500, FEC 3/4, Indian beam, line-up: Zee South East Asia, Zee Music, Zee News, Trendz, Zee MGM,Zee English, Zee Cinema Asia, FX Movies, Smile TV, Premier Cinema, Action Cinema, Classic Cinema, EuroSport News, ESPN India, Maa TV and TV 5 Asie.For PIDs, see the chart.
Insat 3C 74E 4121 H "DD North-East has left (PAL)".
Zee launches dedicated beam for S’pore
Zee Network has launched a dedicated beam of Zee TV for Singapore which is being uplinked out of the city-country and available on Asiasat 3S satellite.
"This will enable viewers in Singapore to watch Zee programmes at their local time and not two-and-a-half hours ahead of India as they are currently receiving India feed," Zee Telefilms president Abhijit Saxena said in a release.
Moreover, the new schedule would be tailored to the needs of viewers in Singapore, he said, adding, "this also opens up opportunities for advertisers who currently pay high advertising rates on India feed".
The Singapore feed would be further extended to rest of South East Asia, he said.
Zee TV had launched a separate beam for Middle East and Bangladesh markets in September 2002
Zee TV launches dedicated Singapore feed
NEW DELHI: Singapore seems to be flavour of season for Indian channels and those operating here. The Subhash Chandra-promoted Zee Network has launched a dedicated beam of Zee TV for Singapore as of 1 June.
Additionally, Zee Telefilms is also negotiating with the local cable service provider in Singapore to carry more Zee family channels, including Zee Cinema.
Speaking about the launch of the service, Zee Telefilms president Abhijit Saxena told indiantelevision.com, "This dedicated feed would help us tap local advertisers more effectively as too those from India and elsewhere who have business interests in Singapore like Indian retailers."
Pointing out that Zee was happy to announce the launch of a separate encrypted beam for Singapore viewers, Saxena added, "The viewers of Singapore will be able to watch Zee TV at their local time and not (two and a half hours) ahead of India as Singapore (currently) receives the India feed."
According to Saxena, the content on the new schedule will be tailored to the needs of the Singapore viewers. The effort would be also to create a more viewer- friendly programming schedule necessitating some changes in the fixed-point chart.
The Zee TV feed is on the StarHub network that services cable homes in Singapore and at the moment, Zee TV has 25,000 paid subscribers at the rate of Singapore $8. However, Saxena did not divulge other financial details like the revenue sharing arrangement.
Naturally, it also opens up avenues for Zee Telefilms to augment its advertising revenue by booking Singaporean ads at local prime time. "It (having a dedicated feed) opens up opportunities for advertisers who currently face extremely high advertising rates on the India feed," Saxena said, but added that at the moment he would not be able to dwell on the new rate card as it was still being worked out.
Pointing out that the new rate card would "substantially reduce the effective rates" paid by advertisers now, Saxena said that the new rates should come into force "within a month or two."
Zee TV launched a separate beam for the Middle East and Bangladesh markets in September 2002. The Singapore feed will further be extended to the rest of South East Asia, thus coinciding with prime time in different markets and concurrently valuating airtime inventory at locally relevant and competitively attractive rates.
The new beam is uplinked out of Singapore and is available on the Asiasat 3S satellite.
Asked whether more Zee channels are expected to have a dedicated feed/beam into the Singapore market in future, Saxena said, "We are currently negotiating with StarHub for Zee Cinema and expect that once it (the service provider) launches its digital service, more channels would be accommodated on the platform."
Interestingly, the Rupert Murdoch-controlled Star Group, has just announced that it would be launching Star Plus in the Singapore market on StarHub on 2 August. This, however, is not a dedicated feed like that of Zee TV but the same feed as that which beams over India.
Disney plans TV channels in India
FRANKFURT: Walt Disney is planning to set up three television channels in India, financed jointly by cable fees and advertising, the head of the US group's TV business said in a newspaper interview published on Wednesday.
"We want to start in India with three channels", the president of Walt Disney Television International, David Hulbert, told the business daily Handelsblatt .
"We'll certainly start in the next 12 months," he added, saying the US group was talking with an Indian company over a possible joint venture. He declined to reveal the name of the partner.
Sorry about the lack of stuff on the site today things are very quiet.
Correction from yesterday Zee music on Asiasat3 is still FTA
Testcard seen on Optus C1 Aussie beam 12287 V SR 30000 1/2
From my Emails & ICQ
From Mario Garcia
Anyone else having problems with RCTI (palapaC2) in Perth.
I am getting a no signal message, or is it just me???? 3.0M mesh C-band.
From Dharmesh (India)
The new Dishtv mux with 16 channels
(great entertainment, but poor picture quality) is running fta with very new freq.12533 V and s.r.40700 on NSS 6 (India beam)
(a very high range in s.r. ever).
Tune in now.
From The Lizzard
Miss Universe was on 1130 EST Adhoc 3 PAS2
Not real deep but easy on the eye.
Not sure on the Frequency and S/R with my old Phoenix 333
its hard to know where you are.
From the Dish
Insat 3A 93.5E 3732 V "Occasional feeds" on , SR 6250, FEC 3/4.
PAS 10 68.5E 4193 V "NDTV 24x7, NDTV India and occasional NDTV feeds" have started on ,fta, SR 8680, FEC 2/3, PIDs 32/33, 34/36 and 37/38.
Foxtel The clear picture
Neil Shoebridge's ``Foxing on pay TV: new subscribers hard to find" (May 24) and ``Foxtel reports rush to digital" (May 28) demonstrate an unusual approach to accuracy.
He continues to say that Foxtel won't provide details of how many new customers have subscribed to Foxtel Digital.
Yet we have made it clear to Shoebridge, and the market, that Foxtel's detailed subscriber numbers will be provided by the Foxtel shareholders as part of regular quarterly reporting to the ASX. In other words, the number of new customers will be forthcoming, but not according to Shoebridge's timetable.
His earlier article attributes virtually all of its criticism and negative claims about Foxtel Digital to anonymous ``industry sources" who are, of course, never accountable.
As one example, the article quotes ``sources" talking authoritatively about problems with our call centre and states as a fact that the ``Foxtel call centre was folded into the sales and marketing department last year (it previously operated as a stand-alone department)". That is the exact opposite of the facts. Our call centre was separated from sales and marketing into a stand-alone department in March 2002 and has operated that way ever since.
In fact, Foxtel does not have a ``sales and marketing department". Sales and marketing are two separate departments that both report to me as CEO.
This ``source" is patently unreliable, yet allowed to make damaging criticisms of Foxtel.
The article claims that we have a weak customer retention strategy. The fact is that we have a dedicated customer retention team that is achieving Foxtel's best-ever save rates. The outcome is that customer churn is at its lowest level in Foxtel's history (and one of the very lowest in the world) and that hasn't happened by accident.
Pace to unveil new STB for Asia
Digital set-top box developer Pace Micro Technology is targeting Asian markets with a new, low-cost digital set-top box tailor-made for the Asia Pacific market. The company anticipates that Asia Pacific broadcasters will be able to deliver advanced but cost-effective digital TV services with the new Dx235, to be launched at the Broadcast Asia show in mid-June.
Sandy Barblett, recently appointed as Asia Pacific Regional Director, commented, "We are particularly excited to be showcasing the Pace Dx235 - our first low cost solution for the region and our PVR technology. Broadcast Asia is crucially timed as we are in active discussions with Asia Pacific operators to bring PVR to the region following our successful launch with BSkyB in the UK."
CHINA: CCTV plans four foreign channels
China Central Television plans to launch at least four channels targeting overseas viewers, paving the way for it to become a worldwide media group
China Central Television plans to launch at least four channels targeting overseas viewers, paving the way for it to become a worldwide media group.
A spokeswoman for the government broadcaster yesterday said it would introduce two new channels for overseas Chinese viewers by the end of the year - one featuring news and the other focusing on culture and entertainment. It planned to launch French and Spanish-language channels in October.
CCTV did not expect high returns from the channels but viewed them as a brand-building exercise.
The firm is estimated to have brought in revenue of more than 80 billion yuan last year, up from 70 billion yuan in 2002, thanks to growing advertising spending by mobile-phone operators and food manufacturers.
CCTV has 12 free-to-air channels, including Chinese-language CCTV-4 for overseas audiences and English-language CCTV-9.
Live satellite chat tonight 9pm NZ and 8.30pm Syd time onwards. Might not be many from NZ on as the rugby trials are on tv tonight.
Sky Sports 3 started on Sky NZ, Zzzzzzzzzzz boring mostly running Eurosports news.
other changes noted today.
B3 12524V Surya FM is now listed
B1 12544V Go Auto TV is also testing here Apid 661
B1 12671V Apid 663 is Trackside or Radio Pacific, FTA Radio.
B1 12671V Apid 664 "Go auto TV" no not a racing channel but a future interactive service. Audio is FTA music
One thing I noticed Sky seems to have the volume up very loud on all their radio stations.
From my Emails & ICQ
Nothing to report
From the Dish
Superbird C 144E 12694 V National Open University is back on , FTA, SR 2000, FEC 7/8,PIDs 33/34.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4140 V "Zee Music" is now encrypted.(Seca1?, cough cough...)
Telstar 10 76.5E 12308 V "Taiwan News Network" has left , replaced by a test card.
Telstar 10 76.5E 12553 H "Hot Channel" is Fta
Changes in pipeline, says Moller
Sanzar's worst-kept secrets have been confirmed. The Super 12 is destined to become a 14-team competition while the tri-nations will increase from six tests to nine.
The tests could be played on the traditional home and away roster, or as three-test mini-tours of each country.
New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive Chris Moller confirmed the possible changes to the two competitions yesterday.
But he said a final decision would not be made till Sanzar (the New Zealand, Australian and South African unions) had tested the sports rights market.
That job falls on Ian Frykberg, the Sydney-based Kiwi who is an expert in sports rights. The former journalist worked for News Corp when the existing 10-year deal was signed after the 1995 World Cup.
He was also a central figure in the Super League war which rent Australian league apart in the 1990s.
Frykberg will begin talks with News Corp in a few weeks. However, in a radical step, the giant broadcaster has already agreed to Frykberg talking to other potential broadcasters like Sky TV, TVNZ and TV3.
Sanzar would have gone to those broadcasters later anyway as it evaluated what News Corp had offered, but this is a big concession. It allows Sanzar to get a feel for the market and what its competitions are worth before it formally sits down with News Corp.
Sanzar can also gauge whether it is worth splitting up its competitions and sell the NPC, Currie Cup, test matches and Super 12 to different broadcasters.
Moller said Sanzar's competitions were worth the most in South Africa, then New Zealand, Australia, Britain and France. It would test the markets in those countries as well as Japan before it makes any decisions on what it will offer and to whom.
Selling the competitions separately would help negate News Corp's sports rights monopoly but that very monopoly suggests it is Sanzar's only real option.
Moller conceded no other broadcaster could offer Sanzar the sort of lump sum deal News Corp can. But he was adamant there was still "competitive tension in the market".
Moller was bullish about the value of its competitions saying they had consistently rated well in South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, Britain and France.
Rugby giants offer more tests to TV
A Super 14 rugby tournament and an expanded Tri-Nations series are being offered to global broadcasters for the start of the 2006 season.
Sanzar (South Africa, New Zealand, Australia rugby) has decided to test the interest in the new concept before announcing a formal offer to News Ltd, which has been the rugby alliance's broadcasting partner in a 10-year deal. That deal ends next year, but News has first right of refusal on a new, five-year contract.
Sanzar has hired broadcasting agent Ian Frykberg to see if broadcasters are interested in the new concept, or if they would prefer to continue with the Super 12 and Tri-Nations tournaments.
In about a month, Frykberg will report back to Sanzar, which will then announce its formal offer to News Ltd. Sky, TVNZ and TV3 will be approached in New Zealand for their feedback and what value they put on broadcasting the current or expanded competitions in a new five-year contract.
South Africa and Australia could each field an extra team in a Super 14 and the extra round of the Tri-Nations could be played as traditional home and away matches or as a mini-tour in one country.
"The key change is, we are not going to News first, we are going to test the market," Sanzar and New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive Chris Moller said yesterday.
"Then we get the chance to get the right feedback from ... stakeholders on rugby and broadcasting issues."
Moller said the four main markets were South Africa, New Zealand, Australia and Europe and since last year "there has been a strong level of interest from a number of broadcasters wanting to be involved with this rugby".
Sanzar sold its broadcasting rights for $878 million to News during the 1995 World Cup in South Africa, a sale which has underpinned Southern Hemisphere rugby.
In settling on its latest proposals, Sanzar bypassed claims from the Pacific Islands, Japan and Argentina that they should be involved in expanded tournaments.
Dubai TV unveils brand new look
Dubai Media Incorporated (DMI), the region's leading media group, has announced the launch of the new Dubai TV unveiling an exciting programme line up aimed at the Arab family audience.
The station's first international news bulletin in an exciting format will be broadcast live from a modern news centre at the Dubai Media City at 10pm on June 1, 2004 marking the launch of Dubai TV's exciting programme grid.
Announcing the station's ambitious expansion plans, Mr. Hussain Ali Lootah, CEO of DMI said: 'Dubai TV caters to the Arab and Gulf family in particular, with innovative programming that reflects the UAE's cosmopolitan and vibrant nature.'
Emirati television professionals will make up the core of the team, including prominent political scientists Dr. AbdulKhaleq Abdulla and Dr. Mohammed bin Huwaidin, journalist Dr. Aisha Ibrahim Sultan and analyst Dr. Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al Naqbi. Several up-and-coming stars like Dina Al Sharaf and Khalid Al Marri will host their own shows.
Dubai TV has also assembled a galaxy of Arab television personalities, who have cultivated large fan following around the world, including Hamdi Kandeel, Dawood Al Shirian, Dina Azar, Lina Sawan, Marianne Klat and Moataz El Demerdash.
The refreshed schedule includes more than 20 programmes produced locally. The line-up ranges from thought-provoking current affairs debates like Al Mash'had Hatha Al Usbou, Al Maqal and Qalam Rasas, to competitions and game shows like Qadha La Tithada and Sayyed Al Qala'a.
Music plays a central role, with El Fan Wo Ahlou, Ghanawi and Hala Marianne appealing to all age groups and contributing to viewing diversity. Complete guides to women's beauty, style, health, fitness, and social and family issues come with Dubai TV's flagship lifestyle shows Asraruha and Elayki.
The empowering and touching Hadeth Wala Haraj, Naltaki and Ahlam, nightly light entertainment show Al Layla Maa Moataz, soap operas and an exciting range of Arabic and foreign movies, all premiering in the region, add to the mix.
Dubai TV has invested substantially in building a world-class news centre that will set a new global standard in production values, quality and technology. Separate news bulletins, one dedicated to fast breaking international stories, the other with a local focus, covering UAE social and economic events will be broadcast daily keeping viewers abreast with the latest across the world.
News and current affairs studios are equipped with cutting edge digital and technical equipment in lighting and projection, video wall systems, cameras, production control room and newsdesks.
Commenting on an action-packed schedule, Mr. Lootah said: 'We are confident that Dubai TV programming will get a positive reception from family viewers. We have produced over 20 new programmes in exciting formats. We will be a major player in Arab satellite television. Our viewers will be the judges.'
Dubai TV's footprint extends from the Arabian Gulf to the Levant and North Africa. The signal can also be received in the United States of America and Australia.
DD's 40-channel DTH offer gets regulator's nod
NEW DELHI: Forget CAS, cable-and-payment-based direct-to-home (DTH) services. In a month from now, Prasar Bharati would have burst onto the scene with a 40-channel rich free-to-air (FTA) DTH service.
It is already sending off letters to 25 private channels represented by a handful of broadcasters inviting them on board its DTH platform.
With information and broadcasting (I&B) minister S Jaipal Reddy pumping ‘full autonomy’ energy into the public broadcaster’s veins, the Prasar Bharati board last week gave its nod to a proposal to increase the number of channels on KU-band platform from 30 to 40.
Apart from the 15-odd Doordarshan (DD) channels, the public broadcaster plans to offer all news channels, FTA entertainment offerings of Sun TV, Zee TV, Sab TV, Sahara and so on, educational channels like Vyasa, Ekalavya and spiritual ones like Jaagran and Aastha. It is possible to offer radio channels from AIR also as part of the service.
Doordarshan covers 89.7% of the population and 77.7% of the area at present. It would cost up to Rs 4,000 crore to cover the remaining 10% population and 20% area on C-band. KU-band transmission has been opted as a cheaper alternative a Rs 500 crore project across the Tenth Plan period.
Yet to be christened, the DTH service would initially be offered in remote areas across eight states, which are not connected either terrestrially or through cable. DD director-general Navin Kumar told ET that 10,000 dish antennae would be distributed free of cost to institutions like gram panchayats.
However, technology being such, the KU-band signals cannot be stopped from reaching you and me, and anyone, who wishes to be free of the cableman, can make a one-time investment to acquire the Rs 5,000-odd dish antenna and receiver box.
It has to be seen if Zee TV, which is already into the DTH business would agree to partner with DD. Being a sole FTA service, there should be no hitches. But then, rival broadcaster STAR has also launched an FTA channel Utsav (referred to as a “popular serials rerun” channel). With Prasar Bharati likely to “speak to STAR” as well, it should be mentioned that STAR proposes to start subscription-based DTH services by the year-end.
When asked, Prasar Bharati CEO KS Sarma said,
“We are ensuring there is regional balance and a good mix of all genres,” adding jocularly, “FTV will definitely not be part of the service though....” Not surprising, Mr Reddy, soon after assuming office, only said that he was a liberal, adding in the same breath that he “was no libertine”.
Prasar Bharati has hired KU-band transponders from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and installed a KU-band earth station at Todapur in Delhi. ISRO would make available four leased transponders on Netherlands New Skies Satellite (NSS-6) satellite initially and would later replace them with ISRO’s satellites on INSAT 4A/4B when it becomes operational in ’05.
Some want cable 'a la carte' Lawmakers push for channel choice
Washington - The ability of television viewers to buy cable and satellite channels "a la carte" as opposed to purchasing pricey packages is emerging as a hot consumer issue in Congress.
When I go to the grocery store to buy a quart of milk, I don't have to buy a package of celery and a bunch of broccoli.
- Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.),on a proposal to make cable television available by individual channels
In the face of rising bills for 70 million Americans who pay for cable TV and 22 million others who subscribe to satellite TV, lawmakers and consumer advocates are pressing to break apart bundled channel packages and enable viewers to buy individual channels.
A furious behind-the-scenes lobbying battle is shaping up, with an odd alliance of consumer and conservative groups and small cable companies on one side, pitted against large cable operators and programmers.
Rep. Nathan Deal (R-Ga.) is floating a proposal that would allow cable and satellite operators to offer channels a la carte, or grouped in themed tiers such as education, sports or children's shows. Currently, most contracts between cable programmers and cable operators prevent the operators from offering channels on an a la carte basis or in themed tiers.
Cable operators put together packages that maximize profits by charging fees to viewers - but trying not to lose them to satellite-based competitors.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, also favors a la carte programming. He said the current system of "take it or leave it" gives consumers "all the choice of a Soviet election ballot."
"When I go to the grocery store to buy a quart of milk, I don't have to buy a package of celery and a bunch of broccoli," McCain said.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee plans to hold hearings on the issue in July, and the Federal Communications Commission announced last week that it is studying the impact of allowing cable and satellite operators to offer a la carte programming. The FCC said it plans to release its conclusions in mid-November, after the Nov. 2 elections.
Battle over bundling
Although cable companies generally offer a lower-cost basic package, with local channels plus a handful of cable networks, most cable customers shell out $40 to $55 a month for an "expanded package" of about 60 to 70 channels, including sports, news, comedy, adult male entertainment and shows targeted for teens, young children and African-Americans.
About 30% of cable subscribers pay an additional fee, about $5 to $40, for high-end digital service, which includes about 250 channels and music programming.
Mark Cooper, director of research at the Consumer Federation of America, a non-profit consumer advocacy group, complained that bundling is solely for the benefit of the cable operators.
"By forcing consumers to buy huge bundles of programming, they extract $5 billion to $10 billion a year," Cooper said.
Cable rates have risen 56% since deregulation in 1996, three times faster than inflation, according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Brian Dietz, spokesman for the National Cable & Telecommunications Association, which represents cable operators, programmers and equipment suppliers, lambasted proposals for a la carte delivery of cable and satellite networks. If such measures were enacted, he said, they "would result in higher prices and less choice for cable and satellite customers."
Matt Polka, president of the American Cable Association, which represents smaller cable operators, wants Congress to pass legislation to allow them to break existing contracts with cable programmers and stop them from forging contracts that require large cable packages.
Polka says the five major broadcast programming giants - Viacom, Disney, Fox, General Electric and Time Warner - own or control 70% to 80% of programming and essentially force small cable providers to bundle.
TELE-satellite News - Number 22/2004 30 May 2004 -
A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by
Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition
A S I A & P A C I F I C
ASIAN BROADCASTERS MIGHT SCALE BACK OLYMPICS COVERAGE
According to David Astley, the secretary-general of
the Asia Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU), some
broadcasters in the region may scale back their
Olympics coverage, as a result of Europe's VAT tax.
According to a statement from World Broadcasting
Unions, Greece has not yet said that it will refund
Value Added Taxes (VAT) on transmission charges, and
it has refused to refund VAT on broadcasters' staff's
hotel charges. "Collectively our members are investing
hundreds of millions of euros to bring images of the
Olympics, and the most famous of all host cities, to
the biggest television audience in the world," noted
Astley. "Greece, and its people, will benefit
enormously . from the positive coverage that will be
transmitted by our TV stations. But most of our
members do not have offices in Europe, so they will
have to pay this extra tax, which will not be incurred
by wealthier broadcasters."
FIRST PRIVATE TV STATION ON AIR
Afghanistan's first private television station went on
air on May 23 in Kabul. Afghan TV is funded by an
Afghan businessman and will have 18 hours of
programming a day. Afghanistan has only ever had one
state TV channel which broadcasts for a few hours in
the evening, but under the Taliban there were no
television stations and it was forbidden to listen to
music or watch satellite broadcasts. The free-to-air
private station run by Ahmed Shah Afghanzai is a major
step towards developing a private TV sector and
intends to go national within a year, an achievement
which will make it the country's first national
channel. "Afghan TV has started operations with
capital of $200,000 and the eventual capital to cover
all the country via satellite is estimated at $3
million," Afghanzai said. During a one-month testing
period the new station will broadcast Afghan, Indian
and western music and films and hopes to broadcast 24
hours a day. Other private channels have registered
with the ministry and are to start airing programs
soon. State television, which broadcasts for limited
hours at the moment, is also slated to soon become a
24-hour channel aired via satellite all over
Afghanistan with financial help from India.
PACE DELIVERS BOXES FOR FOXTEL
FOXTEL, Australia's leading subscription television
provider, has launched its new digital TV service
using leading-edge set-top-units from Pace Micro
Technology. Available on both cable and satellite
platforms, FOXTEL Digital is poised to become the most
advanced interactive digital TV platform in the Asia
Pacific region. The broadcaster is using Pace's DS420
and DC420 digital cable and satellite set-top units.
Based on Pace's common hardware platform, both
products feature NDS's Videoguard conditional access
(CA), Open TV Core 1.1 and high speed PSTN modems.
FOXTEL SIGNS UP 200,000 SUBSCRIBERS
Foxtel still expects to be profitable by mid-2006 and
to have converted all customers to its digital service
that year, according to the head of the pay- TV group,
Kim Williams. He also said he still expects to have
the service in 35 per cent of Australian homes by
2008. Sales of the Foxtel digital service now well
exceed 250,000, but only 140,000 have been installed
in homes. Williams would not say how many sales were
to new customers. Half the Foxtel Digital subscribers
were taking the top package compared with less than 5
per cent before the digital launch, Williams said.
Regional pay-TV operator Austar, which launched its
digital service in mid-March, said last week it had
more than 130,000 digital subscribers. That compares
with the 322,000 free-to-air TV homes that have been
converted to digital since that industry's digital
launch 3 1/2 years ago.
UNIVERSAL TO SUPPLY VOD MOVIES FOR FOXTEL DIGITAL
Universal will supply movies to Boxoffice, pay-TV
operator Foxtel Digital's quasi-VOD service, leaving
Sony the only U.S. studio not supplying product,
according to a report in "Variety". The service, which
launched March 14, airs first-run movies every 30
minutes on 27 channels. There will be a three-month
window between a film's DVD/video release and near-VOD
premiere, down from the customary six months. Warner
was the first major to opt for the shorter window when
it signed up. Foxtel is charging A$5.95 ($4.16) per
movie. Subscribers to the premium package are entitled
to two viewings per month.
LABOR CONSIDERS SALE OF 4TH TV LICENSE
A Labor government could have an extra $1 billion to
spend on services if it decides to sell a fourth
commercial television licence. Labor is considering
whether to overturn the ban on a fourth commercial TV
network if it wins the election. The Federal
Government last week announced a review of the ban,
which expires in 2006. It is understood Labor is
leaning towards a fourth TV network. To spur the
sluggish adoption of digital television, it is likely
a Labor government would limit the new network to
broadcasting in digital. The network may also be
confined initially to the eastern seaboard capital
cities. Labor estimates it could raise $500 million to
$1 billion from the sale of the licence.
COMMUNICATIONS MINISTRY PREPARES FOR DIGITAL
The Ministry of Communication and Information
Technologies is planning to start digital TV
broadcasting shortly. According the Ministry's
press-service, a single television transmitter allows
to air 4 to 5 TV channels simultaneously, and without
a need for setting up external TV antennas as it will
be possible to receive high-quality video signal with
an internal ones. All the audience will need is to buy
relatively cheap device to watch telecasts in
different languages. The digital television is
expected first in Baku, and later in all regions of
CHINA - HONG KONG
HK I-CABLE TO DISTRIBUTE HORIZON CHANNEL IN SHENZHEN
Local cable-television operator i-Cable Communications
Ltd. (ICAB) said it had signed an agreement allowing
it to broadcast one of its channels in the neighboring
city of Shenzhen. Under the deal, the Horizon channel
will be carried on Shenzhen Television Station's
network starting on May 28. In exchange, i-Cable will
carry Shenzhen TV's satellite channel on its own
platform, Hong Kong Cable Television. Press reports
said Shenzhen TV has about 800,000 viewers in the
city. By contrast, i-Cable has just over 650,000
paying subscribers in Hong Kong. Prior to this deal,
i-Cable's Horizon channel already had some
distribution in China, through a government-run
satellite system that serves foreign residence
compounds and high-class hotels. But because that
system doesn't directly reach local Chinese
households, it is less valued by advertisers.
ATV AND ICAB REACH DEAL ON EURO 2004 COVERAGE
Two Hong Kong TV broadcasters said they had reached a
joint agreement on showing the Euro 2004 football
tournament, to be held in Portugal from June 12 to
July 4. Free-to-air broadcaster Asia Television, and
i-Cable Communications (ICAB), which operates Hong
Kong Cable Television, announced the deal on May 27.
Hong Kong Cable TV, in an exclusive arrangement, will
carry all 31 matches of the tournament live. ATV will
carry five matches from the tournament on a delayed
basis, in addition to running regular highlights. Both
companies compete with the free-to-air broadcaster
Television Broadcasts (TVB) which also owns part of
the ExTV pay-TV service. The other pay-TV operators in
Hong Kong are PCCW's NOW Broadband TV and City
Telecom's (CTEL) Hong Kong Broadband Network.
GOVERNMENT TO SUBSIDISE DIGITAL TV BOXES
The Chinese government is preparing to spend millions
of dollars on subsidising television set-top box sales
to lure more subscribers and boost digital cable
development, the South China Morning Post newspaper
has reported. The State Administration of Radio, Film
and Television (SARFT) has been pushing banks to
arrange loans and installments for mainland
cable-television operators and set-top box makers,
according to industry sources. It is also understood
the authorities have given tax breaks and other
concessions to decoder manufacturers.
TV STATIONS ORDERED TO LAUNCH CHILDREN'S CHANNEL
China has ordered all its provincial-level TV stations
to launch a special channel catering for children by
the end of 2006, according to the State Administration
of Radio, Film and Television (SARFT). The TV stations
are required to produce and broadcast excellent
cartoons, movies, TV plays, educational programs,
entertainment programs, and feature programs suitable
for young viewers on the new channel, the SARFT said,
calling the move "a big event" that will bring
benefits to future generations. According to the
three-step plan, one-third of China's provincial TV
stations are ordered launch their children's channel
by the end of this year. China Central Television
Station (CCTV), the country's largest state
broadcaster, launched a special program catering for
young people on December 28, 2003.
GALAXY CUTS PAY-TV CHARGES
Pay-TV operator Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting has
slashed its service charge by 23.8 per cent amid
intensifying competition among fewer players.
According to the "South China Morning Post", the
pay-TV venture of Television Broadcasts has cut the
monthly charge for its three-month-old exTV service
from $168 to $128. Customers would need to sign up for
12 months to take advantage of the lower price and the
promotion would be available until at least the end of
next month. exTV's network will soon be available to
FIJI PREPARES FOR PAY-TV
The business community in Labasa is concerned about
the delay in the issue of a television licence to a
foreign company which wants to set up a pay-TV station
in the North. Labasa Chamber of Commerce president
Subrail Prasad said the fact that the Government has
yet to complete its policy framework on the issue of
television licence to companies was disappointing. "We
have a foreign investor, Fushun Television Limited,
willing to invest $1million in establishing a pay TV
station and there is a delay because the Government
has yet to complete its work." Prasad said the chamber
would like to see the matter resolved and plans for a
pay-TV station in the Northern division will finally
eventuate. Fushun Limited official Zhang Bei Yan said
they had first applied for a licence in 2001. Since
then, they have been waiting for a reply from the
Government. The Chinese company is offering 20 pay
channels - 15 in English, three in Hindi and two Asian
channels. If it opens, people in the North will have a
wide selection to watch.
TRAI TO BE REPLACED
Jaipal Reddy has replaced Ravi Shankar Prasad as
India's Information and Broadcasting Minister
following last week's national elections. Reddy plans
to do away with the Telecom Regulatory Authority of
India (TRAI) -- the broadcasting and telecom watchdog
-- and replace it with "an independent full-time
regulatory authority along the lines of the Federal
Communications Commission in the U.S." He also said he
was unhappy with the way in which the previous
government had tried to implement the Conditional
Access System (CAS) for pay-TV - and then backed out
at the 11th hour. CAS, which was supposed to save
viewers money by allowing them to choose channels
individually rather than packaged as bouquets, was
opposed by the industry, amid spiraling prices.
STAR INDIA TO LAUNCH FTA CHANNEL
News Corp-owned Star Group has given a June 7 launch
date for its new free-to-air Hindi general
entertainment channel, Star Utsav (Star Celebration).
The rerun channel will go out 24/7, carrying daily
soaps, comedies, thrillers, cookery, kids,
mythological and game shows, as well as classic Hindi
films. The network will add to Star India's existing
bouquet of channels: Star Movies, Star World, Star
Gold, Star News, Channel and Star Plus.
EURO 2004 ON ESPN
ESPN-Star Sports will carry live and exclusive
coverage of UEFA Euro 2004. ESPN-Star Sports will
provide special Hindi commentary and analysis for the
telecast in addition to the current English
programming. Besides telecasting the event live and
exclusive in the Indian sub-continent, ESPN-Star
Sports will also produce daily half hour pre-match
highlights complimented with four weekly one-hour
highlights. ESPN-Star Sports will also be bidding to
win the telecast rights of four upcoming cricket
tournaments involving India and also eyeing to bag the
lucrative broadcast rights from BCCI, which would be
up for renewal in July. The first event the company is
looking at is the Asia Cup to be hosted by Sri Lanka
in July. The event would see 13 One-Day matches
between India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Hong
Kong and United Arab Emirates. The next tournament for
which the channel would be bidding is the tri-series
involving India, Pakistan and Australia to be played
in Holland in August.
GOLF NETWORK TO CARRY OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP
Jupiter Programming's Golf Network has reached a
two-year-deal for the broadcast rights to the
prestigious Open Championship, which the channel will
broadcast live. This year's event takes place from
July 15-18 at the Royal Troon Golf Club, in Scotland.
Golf Network will cover the event for about 10 hours
live each day. The Golf Network is available on cable
and satellite platforms in Japan.
VIEWERS UPSET OVER DIGITAL TV TAPING RESTRICTIONS
Measures implemented by NHK and private TV
broadcasting companies to control the copying of
digital television programs have drawn a flood of
complaints from TV users, with some saying they have
been deprived of certain editing freedoms. On April 5,
NHK and the National Association of Commercial
Broadcasters in Japan began airing their programs with
a special transmission signal that allows only a
single copy of the program to be made. Because
programs that have been copied once cannot be
duplicated or edited digitally, editing the programs
via a personal computer has become impossible. In
addition, the broadcasters' move has made it necessary
for viewers to insert a special user identification
card, known as a B-CAS card, into their digital TV
sets to watch programs. These duplication controls are
being applied to digital TV programs aired by both
digital terrestrial and satellite broadcasters. In the
week after the measure was implemented, NHK and the
grouping of private broadcasters received more than
15,000 inquiries and complaints about the scheme. The
posts and telecommunications ministry plans to
terminate analogue terrestrial and satellite
broadcasting and have companies switch to digital
broadcasting completely by 2011.
SECOND PAY-TV STATION PREPARES FOR LAUNCH
The Malaysian-based Berjaya Group has announced plans
to launch Malaysia's second pay-TV station in October.
The new station, to be called MiTV, will go
head-to-head with ASTRO All Asia Networks, which
currently holds a monopoly over the subscriber-based
TV market. MiTV will be fighting for a piece of the
country's TV market that has some 5 million viewers.
ASTRO has just over a quarter of that, or 1.28 million
customers, with a customer base that grew 30 per cent
in the year to the end of January. Vincent Tan Chee
Yioun, who controls the Berjaya Group, is planning on
delivering MiTV using digital terrestrial technology,
which will drastically reduce costs. Tan took over
privately-held Grafimatix, which holds a pay-TV
licence, for some $6.8 million and has invested close
to $26.3 million to develop the station. The station
has plans for an initial public offering in about two
years. According to unconfirmed reports, MiTV will
offer about 80 channels and charge a monthly flat
TV REVOLUTION ON THE WAY
Pakistan's Federal Minister for Information and
Broadcasting, Sheikh Rashid Ahmed, has said that media
in Pakistan will experience a revolution in the next
three to six months. According to Radio Netherlands,
the Minister said there are seven private channels,
permission has been granted for 13, and if 30 channels
of cross media are also accorded permission then 50
channels would be on air in a couple of months. He
stated that the direct to home (DTH) facility is being
extended to ARY and Geo as well as PTV and if there
are at least 50 channels each for these then there
will be 150 channels. Shaikh Rashid pointed out that
in the coming period there would be some 400 to 500
channels. He was of the view that government should
accord permission for cross-media.
STARHUB LAUNCHES DIGITAL TV SERVICE
Singapore's second-largest telecoms firm, StarHub,
rolled out a S$40-million ($23.45-million) digital
cable television service in the city state on May 29,
with 11 new channels for subscribers. StarHub is
Singapore's only provider of pay-TV services, serving
about 380,000 homes. Cable TV reaches about 35 per
cent of homes in the nation of four million people.
StarHub awarded contracts last July to four firms to
build the system in Singapore. The firms are OpenTV,
Nagravision, Advanced Digital Broadcast and Thomson
Broadcast & Media Solutions. StarHub is
majority-controlled by state-owned Singapore
Technologies Telemedia, with a stake of 50.47 per
cent. Other shareholders are Britain's BT Group,
Japan's Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp, Singapore
Press Holdings and state-owned television firm
REALITY TV JOINS STARHUB CABLE TV
Reality TV will be launched in Singapore over StarHub
Cable TV next month. It is the first non-American TV
channel to be launched worldwide in 125 countries -
including Asian regions like India, Philippines and
Indonesia - and in 18 languages. It comprises a
mixture of original productions, shows sourced from
independent producers, and purchases from larger
studios like MGM.
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY TV TO START ON MAY 31
From May 31, lawmakers can be watched live by people
from their homes with the official launching of the
National Assembly Television (NATV). NATV officials
said it will broadcast 16 hours a day, starting from
09:00. Under a principle of fairness and objectivity,
it will deliver all Assembly activities with no
editing and no commentary. It is the first time the
public will be able to observe legislation being
processed through the Assembly broadcasting system.
Viewers can receive NATV programs through local cable
television networks and channel 156 of satellite
OLYMPICS TO BE BROADCAST DIGITALLY
The nation's four terrestrial television stations will
broadcast the Olympic Games in Athens this August
using digital signals. The channels -- Taiwan
Television Enterprise Ltd (TTV), China Television Co
(CTC), Chinese Television System (CTS) and Formosa
Television (FTV), which have been granted rights by
International Olympic Committee (IOC) to publicly
broadcast the event on television and radio -- are
scheduled to switch to digital signals on June 1.
UBC EXPECTS REALITY SHOW BOOST
Pay-TV operator United Broadcasting Corp (UBC) expects
to gain 10,000 to 12,000 subscribers a month in June
and July thanks to a new promotion and the launch of
the "Academy Fantasia" reality show. The company
normally adds about 8,000 subscribers a month. UBC
marketing and sales director Ongard Prapakamol said
that new subscribers in the two-month period who join
with an initial payment of Bt15,500 - rather than the
regular Bt11,000 - will get a 29-inch Sharp TV set.
The company also plans to launch a number of new
programmes in the second half of the year focusing on
the family market. These will include educational,
adventure and discovery programmes, many aimed at
children. The company expects that the strategy will
boost its subscribers by 18 per cent by the end of the
year. In the first quarter, UBC had 436,193
subscribers, up 0.3 per cent from the end of 2003. The
company also reported total revenue of Bt1.7 billion
and a net profit of Bt135 million in the period.
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
SHOWTIME DRIVES REGIONAL TV GROWTH
The 22 countries of the Middle East and Africa rank
third in total TV viewing hours, after North America
and Europe, according to a recently published report,
'TV Worldwide', by Eurodata covering 2.5 billion
viewers across 72 countries and 600 channels. The
study showed that Middle East viewers watched an
average of 3 hours and 15 minutes of TV a day,
equivalent to almost 50 full days a year, up nearly 8%
from last year instead. This jump in regional viewing,
which mirrors global trends, is driven by the
explosion in TV choice led by pay-TV networks, which
in turn is a result of viewers demanding
up-to-the-minute breaking news, the latest must-see
blockbuster movies and the most recent season of their
favourite comedy series. Showtime and other pay TV
operators have been drivers in growing and developing
this industry by delivering an ever-increasing number
of channel options and programming choices to viewers
across the Middle East. Ten years ago, there weren't
more than 50 channels across the region; today, there
are more than 1,100 in the Middle East and Africa,
with music and news channels continuing to be some of
the fastest growing. There are no less than 70 music
channels available in the region. When the network
first launched, Showtime had just six channels. Today,
it offers more than 50 channels, including 17 movie
channels, four sports channels, 13 music channels and
four documentary channels.