B1 12519V Sky NZ is listing "Coming soon" most likely a new radio service. 12671V has gone from 17 services to 19 but my Nokia won't list the names on that transponder.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Steve D

Two New Audio Channels on B1

Audio channels on B1. We now have 'Coming Soon' (encrypted) and
'Yoda' which is currently f-t-a. 'Yoda' is playing the 'Trackside' audio.

Steve D

From John

Received in the mail on Friday, a brochure from Foxtel offering either;

1. Free Foxtel Express self installation kit or
2. Free installation by a technician

Must start a new contract, and was addressed to my house, stating "As your
house has had foxtel previously installed, you are eligible for a free self
install kit, or free installation by a technician".

From Mark

3895 Vert

Volley ball feed from Japan , Iran vs Algeria

From the Dish

PAS 8 166E BN TV has started on 12726 H, MDS, PIDs 521/649.
PAS 8 166E 12422 H It's HMV Radio and Lawson CS Hot Station on , Fta, APIDs 3606-3607.

Optus B3 156E BorderNet has started on 12595 V, SR 30000, FEC 2/3.

Superbird C 144E 12682 V "CTS has left" . .
Superbird C 144E 12694 V "National Open University" has left

JCSAT 3 128E 4054 V Occasional feeds on , SR 6438, FEC 3/4.
JCSAT 3 128E 4068 V Occasional feeds on , SR 7014, FEC 3/4.

AsiaSat 4 122E 3881 H "CBN" has left again.
AsiaSat 4 122E Occasional feeds on 4040 H, SR 4000, FEC 3/4.

Thaicom 1A 120E 3949 V "ITV (Thailand)" has left , moved to Thaicom 2.

Koreasat 3 116E 12550 V "MBC" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1360/1320.

Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "Phoenix Infonews" has replaced "MAC TV" on , Viaccess, PIDs 72/73.

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 12660 V "Hebei Traffic and Music Radio 1-3" have started on , Fta, APIDs 84-92.

NSS 6 95E 12647 H "BN TV" has started on ,Fta, PIDs 1793/1794.
NSS 6 95E The DD muxes have left 12650 V and 12729 V.
NSS 6 95E 12688 H New PIDs for almost all channels in the TARBS World TV mux.
NSS 6 95E SpaceGate has moved from 11685 H to 11635 H, SR 27672, FEC 7/8, Middle East beam.

Yamal 201 90E 3571 L "Kolyma +" has started on , Fta, SR 3570, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.

ST 1 88E 3632 V "RAI International 4 and Savoir Knowledge" are now encrypted.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "TNN" has started on , Fta, PIDs 6196/6177, 00-06 HKT.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H "Talk Sport has replaced Panjab Radio" on , Fta, APID 513.

Telstar 10 76.5E AXN East Asia 2 has started on 3920 H, PowerVu, PIDs 1560/1520.
Telstar 10 76.5E It's Compassion TV on 12650 V, Fta, PIDs 1824/1825.
Telstar 10 76.5E 12613 V A TV Plus promo has started on ,Fta, PIDs 2176/2177.

Weekly SatcoDX News 21 May 2004 - 28 May 2004



PBId2051307 on 12.615 (V,22425,104): It has started
Animax South Asia on 3.920 (H,28340,1110,1102,1110)
Test on 3.920 (H,28340,1160,1120,1160)

THAICOM 2,3 (78.5E)



DrDish@TV [May 21,22,23- 12GMT to15GMT] on 3.671 (H,13333,1057,1058,1057): It has Started
Nepal1 on 3.840 (V,26667,257,258,257): It has Started
Sadhna on 3.840 (V,26667,273,274,273): It has Started
Punjab Today on 3.840 (V,26667,289,290,289): It has Started
MH1 on 3.840 (V,26667,305,306,305): It has Started
Sadhna Super on 3.840 (V,26667,321,322,321): It has Started
CVK Cambodia on 4.124 (V,5929,308,256,8190): It has Started
Punjab Today on 3.626 (V,15552,2081,2082,2081): Punjab Today will shift to 3840 V
Sadhna Super Test Run on 3.840 (V,26667,321,322,321): Ahimsa TV Relaunched as Sadhna Super TV
Nepal 1 on 3.840 (V,26667,49,50,49): New PIDS and SN
Sadhna on 3.840 (V,26667,1057,1058,1057): New PIDS and SN
Punjab Today on 3.840 (V,26667,2081,2082,2081): New PIDS and SN
MH1-Music on 3.840 (V,26667,3105,3106,3105): New PIDS and SN
Sadhna Super on 3.840 (V,26667,4129,4130,4129): New PIDS and SN
Nepal 1 on 3.840 (V,26667,33,34,31): New PIDS

ST 1 (88.0E)



Savoir Knowledge Channel on 3.632 (V,26666,49,33,49): It's encrypted now
Public TV Service on 3.632 (V,26666,6193,6177,6193): It's clear now, time sharing with TNN

NSS 6 (95.0E)



DD Bharti on 12.650 (V,27500,533,633,3001): New Symbol rate and Parameters
DD Sports on 12.650 (V,27500,534,634,3002): New Symbol rate and Parameters
DD India on 12.650 (V,27500,535,635,3003): New Symbol rate and Parameters
DD News on 12.650 (V,27500,536,636,3004): New Symbol rate and Parameters
DD National on 12.730 (V,27500,501,601,1050): It has started
DD Kannada on 12.730 (V,27500,511,611,4456): It has started
DD Bangla on 12.730 (V,27500,503,603,503): It has started
DD Telugu on 12.730 (V,27500,504,604,5504): It has started
DD-Malayalam on 12.730 (V,27500,505,605,6509): It has started
DD Oriya on 12.730 (V,27500,506,606,6507): It has started
DD-Gujarati on 12.730 (V,27500,508,608,3456): It has started
Lig TV on 12.646 (V,28066,273,274,273): New SR
Future TV USA on 12.646 (V,28066,769,770,769): New SR
ESC 2 on 12.646 (V,28066,785,786,785): New SR
Tele Liban on 12.646 (V,28066,801,802,801): New SR
Leonardo on 12.646 (V,28066,833,834,833): New SR
Nile Culture on 12.646 (V,28066,865,866,865): New SR

ASIASAT 3S (105.5E)



Voice of People on 3.880 (H,27500,1512,1512): It has started
Main General Program on 3.880 (H,27500,1612,1612): It has started
Sudan Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,2112,2112): It has started
Al Nour Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,2212,2212): It has started
Saudi 1 on 3.880 (H,27500,1171,1172,1171): Corrected FEC
ABU DHABI TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1131,1132,1131): Corrected FEC
Syria TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1111,1112,1111)

SINOSAT 1 (110.5E)



CNR 1 on 4.067 (V,5990,80,80): New NID
CNR 2 on 4.067 (V,5990,84,84): New NID
CNR 3 on 4.067 (V,5990,88,88): New NID
CNR 7 on 4.067 (V,5990,92,92): New NID
SW 1 on 4.067 (V,5990,96,96): New NID
SW 2 on 4.067 (V,5990,100,100): New NID
CNR7 on 4.067 (V,5990,108,108): New NID
GW 5(L) / 6(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,112,112): New NID
GW 8 on 4.067 (V,5990,116,116): New NID
GW 11 on 4.067 (V,5990,120,120): New NID
GW 13(L) / 14(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,124,124): New NID
GW 15(L) / 16(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,128,128): New NID
GW 17(L) / 18(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,132,132): New NID
GW 19(L) / 20(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,136,136): New NID
GW 21(L) / 22(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,140,140): New NID
GW 23(L) / 24(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,144,144): New NID
GW 25(L) / 26(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,148,148): New NID
GW 27(L) / 28(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,152,152): New NID
GW 29(L) / 30(R) on 4.067 (V,5990,156,156): New NID
GW L29R30 on 4.067 (V,5990,156,156)

PALAPA C2 (113.0E)



Feeds on 3.878 (V,6000,33,36,33): Indosiar Live Feeds
no name on 3.977 (H,2539)
MWD - Myawady TV on 3.707 (H,5925,4194,4195,4194): New NID
Service 1 on 3.926 (H,4208,33,36,33)
SBN Finance Channel on 11.472 (H,15555,2101,2102,2101): Polarity corrected
CTI Asia on 11.472 (H,15555,2201,2202,2201): Polarity corrected
SET International on 11.472 (H,15555,2301,2302,2301): Polarity corrected
ETTV Asia on 11.472 (H,15555,2401,2402,2401): Polarity corrected
Azio TV on 11.472 (H,15555,2501,2502,2501): Polarity corrected
Fashion TV India on 11.472 (H,15555,2601,2602,2601): Polarity corrected
MTV China on 11.472 (H,15555,2701,2702,2701): Polarity corrected

KOREASAT 2 (113.0E)



TV Service1 on 12.619 (H,12297,3956,3957,3956): New TID
TV Service2 on 12.619 (H,12297,1592,1593,1592): New TID
TV Service3 on 12.619 (H,12297,2122,2123,2122): New TID
TV Service4 on 12.619 (H,12297,4826,4827,4826): New TID
TV Service5 on 12.619 (H,12297,4381,4382,4381): New TID

KOREASAT 3 (116.0E)



Data Service on 11.862 (L,21300,848): It has started
HCB on 12.370 (H,24070,902,900,902)
SPICE on 12.370 (H,24070,802,800,802)
EBS2 on 12.370 (H,24070,1302,1300,1302)
EBS1 on 12.370 (H,24070,1202,1200,1202)
OUN on 12.370 (H,24070,202,200,202)
HKB on 12.370 (H,24070,1102,1100,1102)
IPG on 12.370 (H,24070)
PBC on 12.370 (H,24070,1002,1000,1002)
KHS-1 on 12.370 (H,24070,702,700,702)
eCH-1-T on 12.370 (H,24070,602,600,602)
OSB-D on 12.370 (H,24070,302,300,302)
PMK-TV on 12.370 (H,24070,80,81,80)
CH 601 on 12.630 (V,26718,1901,1902,1901)
CH 602 on 12.630 (V,26718,1911,1912,1911)
CH 603 on 12.630 (V,26718,1921,1922,1921)
CH 604 on 12.630 (V,26718,1931,1932,1931)
CH 605 on 12.630 (V,26718,1941,1942,1941)
CH 606 on 12.630 (V,26718,1951,1952,1951)
CH 607 on 12.630 (V,26718,1961,1962,1961)
CH 608 on 12.630 (V,26718,1971,1972,1971)
CH 609 on 12.630 (V,26718,1981,1982,1981)
CH 610 on 12.630 (V,26718,1991,1992,1991)
Coffee_test on 12.648 (H,24750)
Mockdong IDC on 12.648 (H,24750)
KT3 on 12.648 (H,24750)
KT2 on 12.648 (H,24750)
KT1 on 12.648 (H,24750)
OLC on 12.670 (V,24750): It has started
MegaSat1 on 12.670 (V,24750): It has started
TV Service1 on 12.730 (H,27500,2560,2561,2560): It has started
TV Service2 on 12.730 (H,27500,2576,2577,2576): It has started
TV Service3 on 12.730 (H,27500,2592,2593,2592): It has started
TV Service4 on 12.730 (H,27500,2608,2609,2608): It has started
TV Service5 on 12.730 (H,27500,2624,2625,2624): It has started
TV Service6 on 12.730 (H,27500,2640,2641,2640): It has started
TV Service7 on 12.730 (H,27500,2656,2657,2656): It has started
TV Service8 on 12.730 (H,27500,2672,2673,2672): It has started
TV Service9 on 12.730 (H,27500,2688,2689,2688): It has started
Data Service1 on 12.730 (H,27500,2704): It has started
Data Service2 on 12.730 (H,27500,2720): It has started
Data Service3 on 12.730 (H,27500,2736)

APSTAR 1A (134.0E)



CCTV 3 on 4.160 (H,27500,512,650,8190): It's encrypted now
CCTV 5 on 4.160 (H,27500,513,660,8190): It's encrypted now
CCTV 6 on 4.160 (H,27500,514,670,8190): It's encrypted now
CCTV 8 on 4.160 (H,27500,515,680,8190): It's encrypted now
CCTV Kids on 4.160 (H,27500,516,690,8190)
CCTV News on 4.160 (H,27500,517,700,8190): It's encrypted now
ShenZhen TV Test Card on 4.044 (H,4420,160,80,8190): New SR
ShenZhen TV Test Card on 4.044 (H,4420,160,80,8190): SID/NID/TID added
ZheJiang TV on 4.050 (V,7820,32,33,32): New TID
ZheJiang People's Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,34,34): New TID
Music FM 96.98 on 4.050 (V,7820,35,35): New TID
ZheJiang Economics Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,36,36): New TID
ZheJiang FM 99.6 Culture channel on 4.050 (V,7820,37,37): New TID
ZheJiang Health Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,38,38): New TID
ZheJiang Traffic Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,39,39): New TID
ZheJiang People's Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,42,42): New TID
ZheJiang People's Radio on 4.050 (V,7820,49,49): New TID
ShenZhen TV on 4.044 (H,4420,160,80,8190): It has replaced Test Card

APSTAR 1 (138.0E)



no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)
no name on 3.786 (H,5000)

PANAMSAT 8 (166.0E)



TFC J on 3.880 (V,28700,502,550,502): It's encrypted now
Test Card on 4.050 (V,13236,1360,1320,1360): It's encrypted again
Myung Sung Church TV on 12.412 (H,3700,1110,1121,1110): New SR

PANAMSAT 2 (169.0E)



YEK on 4.090 (V,21000,512,640,128)
Test Card on 4.090 (V,21000,514,641,130): It has started
SYRA on 4.090 (V,21000,516,644,132): It has started
TEFE on 4.090 (V,21000,517,645,133): It has started
P207 on 4.090 (V,21000,518,646,134)
TVG on 4.090 (V,21000,520,648,136): It has started
Feeds ( no name ) on 3.865 (V,19530)
Feeds ( no name ) on 3.865 (V,19530)
Feeds ( no name ) on 3.865 (V,19530)
Feeds ( no name ) on 3.865 (V,19530)


Sanzar, News in rugby ratings row

From http://seven.com.au/news/topstories/86337

Sanzar chief executive Chris Moller disputes claims that low pay-TV ratings in Australia will financially savage the South African, New Zealand and Australian rugby deal being negotiated with broadcasting giant News Corp.

Moller would not discuss Sanzar's hopes about a roll-over broadcasting deal with News Corp, but disputed claims that revenue could fall by up to half.

"To suggest that a drop in one market is going to translate to a 50 per cent drop in the total global revenue for Sanzar is a very long bow to draw," Moller said.

"It is a very wide miss of the goalposts and I would think Australia would be horrified by that idea. It simply challenges commercial sensibility and logic."

Sanzar believes its future proposals will have widespread commercial appeal to underpin rugby in New Zealand, Australia and South Africa.

The tripartite collective has been discussing the next step for Super 12 and Tri-Nations rugby with News Corp for some time, with an announcement due this week.

Sanzar's proposals have been inspected by News Corp and refined to produce a rugby package which appeals to the broadcaster.

"We will be revealing a number of options, not just a single deal, and seeing what people will pay for various segments," Moller said.

The next agreement would only involve the current nations, with no room for the Pacific Islands, Japan or Argentina.

The original deal with News Corp guaranteed New Zealand, Australia and South Africa $US555 million ($NZ885 million) for a decade-long series of Super 12 and Tri-Nations tests. That contract expires next year, but News has first rights to extend the partnership.

Moller's comments were supported by an Australian Rugby Union spokesman, who said pay television support for rugby on Foxtel when added to Optus and Austar was up around 1.5 million households.

"To read elsewhere that it might be only 700,000 is a serious flaw in this whole argument about Sanzar taking a huge financial hit in the next deal," the spokesman said.

"Rugby continues to have a strong pay TV content and the Super 12 final on Foxsport was the most watched rugby event in the history of the channel. And the value of what we are selling is not just about what we are selling in the domestic market, we are selling rights in other markets like the UK, where they generate an enormous revenue stream."

Speculation about the future shape of the Super 12 and Tri-Nations has gathered momentum in recent years as Australia and South Africa pushed for extra teams and others like the Pacific Islands lobbied for inclusion.

Moller revealed last week there would be no change to the foundation nations, but speculation continues that they may have to offer broadcasters more games for the same reward.

NZRU faces financial disaster

From http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,2924089a1823,00.html

Sanzar is staring at a crippling 50 per cent hit in broadcasting revenue because of rugby's failure to generate pay TV subscriptions in Australia.

The three-nation collective - South Africa, Australia, New Zealand - is expected to announce this week its approach to negotiations with News Corporation.

It will also confirm Sydney-based Ian Frykberg as its negotiator. Frykberg was a key player for News Corp in the original contract and now represents the Australian Rugby Union.

Broadcasting fees produce nearly 60 per cent of the NZRU's revenue. So the big hit looming will be a disaster for New Zealand rugby. It will impact significantly on player retention and development programmes and on all levels of the game.

Many had expected Sanzar to receive about 20 per cent less than the $555m it got from News Corp in 1995 for the original 10-year-deal. But dark clouds now loom for Sanzar with authoritative Australian sources telling the Star-Times the coalition can expect about only half the old deal.

Australian broadcasting expert Barry O'Brien said New Zealand and South Africa had performed well but the Australian market had been a disaster. Anti-siphoning laws make test matches free-to-air there and compound the problem.

"(News Corp) needed to get it in 1995 to launch their platforms (in the Sanzar countries). But the value of the product now is totally different," said O'Brien, chief executive of leading media agency Total Advertising and Communication.

The situation may also cause friction within Sanzar over how the contract will be split. Currently South Africa gets the largest slice, then New Zealand with Australia last.

From a population five times that of New Zealand, Murdoch's Australian pay TV service Foxtel has generated only 700,000 subscribers compared to the 550,000 SKY TV has here. This is despite Foxtel being the dominant player in the market.

It's also anticipated England and France will provide increased revenues to Murdoch. If they exceed what Australia delivers, they will further erode Sanzar's value to News Corp.

"We have to wait and see what any broadcaster is prepared to pay," New Zealand Rugby Union chief executive Chris Moller said.

"But there is an issue within Sanzar of splitting that revenue. If there was a dramatic change then one issue that may well be on the table is whether the revenue share as currently negotiated should be amended."

In 1995 rugby league imploded with the ARL-Super League war that pitched Foxtel in a cut-throat battle with Optus to rule Australian pay TV.

Foxtel then banked on Super 12 delivering a weekly audience to fill the hole left by the Super League. But it didn't.

Now rugby league has recaptured its audience, Australian Rules is so popular it has a dedicated channel. Without being able to leverage test matches, the value of rugby to Australian pay TV has diminished greatly.

And with Optus gone there is no alternative cash-rich broadcaster for Sanzar to turn to in Australia.

The NZRU is also trying to clarify its position with its broadcasting adviser - London based Octagon CSI. It has recently restructured amid marketplace speculation of financial instability.

The company was forced to withdraw its bid to secure the English premier league's broadcast rights in the Middle East when its parent company, Interpublic Group, refused to honour a guarantee. Octagon's motorsport division has lost millions of dollars and Octagon's value was written down by more than $US200 million ($320m) late last year. Chief executive Karl Bistany has been replaced in a major shake-up after 15 years with the company.

Bistany oversaw the NZRU account and was in New Zealand just a fortnight ago.

Moller confirmed the NZRU had sought clarification of what had happened at Octagon CSI and how it might be affected. The previous NZRU administration signed a multi-year deal with the company.

Moller confirmed that, with Bistany gone, it was reviewing the contract and if there might be an opportunity to exit.

"It's not clear-cut one way or the other, and furthermore we have to contemplate whether we want to do that," Moller said.

"We are in a mode of trying to find out what the situation is, what the impact on us is and what actions as a consequence we can take. That will dictate whether the current arrangement stays in place or something changes."

Competition sweeping into pay-TV

From http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2004/5/31/business/8093506&sec=business

WHEN Astro All Asia Network plc launched its exercise for a listing on Bursa Malaysia last year, you might have read in the prospectus about the exclusive licence it has for direct-to-home television broadcasting services until 2007. That would give it a monopoly over pay-TV for a few more years.

Its exclusive licence apparently covers broadcast satellite TV services only. That leaves it open to competition from delivery platforms other than satellite-based ones.

We've now seen that. In a report on Wednesday, quoting sources, Reuters said Tan Sri Vincent Tan bought a company that was licensed and capable of delivering terrestrial TV broadcasting using digital technology. This TV station, called MiTV, may begin broadcasting in October.

The giant in this sector made its public move last Thursday. The Telekom Malaysia Bhd group said it had started trials for its video-on-demand-on-TV project and this might be introduced as early as July.

Both MiTV and Telekom will be competitors to Astro, an extra-terrestrial experience for the latter, which is still a monopoly today. That looks set to change before the year is out.

There was naturally a reaction of that on Astro's share price. The price fell 8 sen on Wednesday and 12 sen on Thursday. The stock, however, recovered fully with a gain of 26 sen to end the week at RM4.90.

This involves high stakes for Astro, which is traded at a premium in the market. Astro carries a market valuation of RM9.4bil, not bad for a company that made a net profit of just RM12mil for the year ended Jan 31, 2004, although its fourth-quarter earnings of RM38mil showed some promise. Even so, a great deal of potential is built into that massive market value of RM9.4bil.

Some fund managers have been aware the competition will come one day. They knew PCCW in Hong Kong had started pay-TV operations by using the telephone wire network of Hong Kong Telecom that PCCW controls. It has been shown therefore that pay-TV programmes can be routed through copper telephone lines.

Telekom, being in the industry, would obviously know about that too. Indeed, it is understood Telekom officials have met with their counterparts at NOW TV, the Internet-based digital TV service of PCCW. NOW is an abbreviation of Network of the World.

The meeting was for Telekom officials to learn from the experience of NOW TV, which is said to be profitable.

This has important implications. Telekom intends to become a pay-TV operator like Astro and will become a media-telecommunications converged company.

Currently, Telekom is in negotiations to buy programming content. It is likely to offer channels like ESPN, Discovery, Cinemax and CNN. These are some of the channels offered by Astro and are not, it is believed, exclusive to Astro.

The new operators will naturally have to differentiate themselves from Astro. They could do so with pricing, positioning for certain market segments and content quality.

There is HBO and there is HBO, according to an observer. You could, for instance, buy a package of older HBO movies or newer HBOs.

Competition will drive all the pay-TV operators to buy better programmes for their customers.

Astro had taken steps to be competitive. It purchased Celestial Pictures, the library of Chinese movies produced by Shaw Brothers in Hong Kong. This gives Astro a leg up with its own proprietary entertainment programmes.

Will Telekom and MiTV be able to compete with Astro? Among investors, T. Ananda Krishnan, who controls Astro, is highly regarded. This trust is reflected in the premium valuations in the shares of companies controlled by him.

Telekom has one advantage. It owns the last mile telephone lines that reach into most homes in the country.

Ownership of the telephone line network is crucial for operators of broadband services. Without it, the operators would be at the mercy of the telephone companies for the rental charges the latter would impose.

For this reason, Softbank Corp, Japan's biggest Internet access company, is in discussions to buy a majority stake in Japan Telecom, according to reports. Japan Telecom is the third largest fixed-line telephone company in Japan, and control of it would allow Softbank to stream entertainment programmes through the telephone lines.

Over here, it is understood Telekom will deploy an Internet-based system via its Streamyx broadband service. It is likely to offer two packages – monthly subscriptions and pay-per-view. This is similar to Astro's offerings.

As for MiTV, it is expected to offer 80 channels for which it will charge a fixed monthly fee, according to Reuters.

There will soon be three pay-TV networks in Malaysia, which will introduce competition for multi-channel TV services. That should dispel complaints of Astro's abrupt increases of its subscription rates. The competition will soon take care of that.

HONG KONG: Galaxy slashes pay-TV charge in marketing push

From http://www.asiamedia.ucla.edu/article.asp?parentid=11596

Pay-television operator Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting has slashed its service charge by 23.8 per cent amid intensifying competition among fewer players

Pay-television operator Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting has slashed its service charge by 23.8 per cent amid intensifying competition among fewer players.

The pay-television 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, exTV chief operating officer Jackey Chan Sek-nin said yesterday.

An exTV spokeswoman said the promotion would be available until at least the end of next month.

Mr Chan said there was still room for exTV to adjust pricing and content, and it would step up its marketing push soon.

ExTV's move to slash its service charge follows rival Yes TV's announcement earlier this month that it would surrender its pay-television licence to the Broadcasting Authority.

Taiwanese niche broadcaster TV Plus also waved the white flag for its business last month.

Their departure has left Hong Kong with four pay-television operators - exTV, i-Cable Communications, NOW Broadband TV and City Telecom. I-Cable, the territory's No 1 sector operator, charges $298 a month for its service while City Telecom's service costs $88.

NOW Broadband allows customers to subscribe to individual channels.

I-Cable subscription services executive director Eric Lo yesterday said the broadcaster would not compete on pricing.

Mr Chan said exTV's network soon would be available to 500,000 homes. It had planned to hit that target by the end of the year. He did not disclose subscriber figures but said he was confident of signing up 75,000 customers by the end of the year.

ExTV has failed to attract a large audience, with its focus on drama and local content failing to offset its lack of sports programming. "The price is low enough but the content is not attractive at all," said an analyst at a Singaporean brokerage.

I-Cable has secured exclusive broadcasting rights for football's English Premier League, Spanish Premier League, German League and next month's European championship.

JP Morgan analyst Vineet Sharma wrote in a recent report: "We do not believe the [pay-television] project will work but we think TVB's management ... did the right thing by pursuing it."

Galaxy hopes to break even in three to four years, with a client base of 300,000 to 400,000.

TV is human right, says tree row man

From http://www.telegraph.co.uk/

A retired policeman is mounting a legal fight over eight protected trees that he says are infringing his basic human right to watch satellite television.

Last week, James Read lost round one of his battle against the handsome larches, hornbeams and maple sycamores that are blocking the satellite signal. Dartford borough council narrowly rejected his application to have the trees thinned and trimmed.

Now he is lodging an appeal with John Prescott, the Deputy Prime Minister, and says he is prepared to take his fight to the European Court of Human Rights.

In his application to the council, Mr Read, 53, a father of four, said: "Living in a technological age, I consider it a basic human right to receive television signals and enjoy watching television."

He told the development control board committee that when he had moved into his home in New Barn seven years ago reception had been good. Since then, the trees had grown "out of control".

Mr Read said that while he and his wife Janice, 52, loved the trees, they were now more than twice the height of his home and posed a safety risk as well as cutting out sunlight from his garden.

Committee members were divided over the issue. However, a report from planning officers said there were no human rights or health and safety grounds to approve the application, which was rejected by five votes to four.

Mr Read is determined to fight on. He said: "I'm one of life's good guys and I feel I've been treated badly for doing things by the book. I haven't just lopped off some branches, I've gone through all the right channels."


No update


No update


Sorry not much to report today and things running a bit late as usual on Fridays. Jon's Asia weekly column arrived to late in my Email to be included in yesterdays update but is online in todays update..

Jon's Asia Weekly

Issue 6

"Funny old thing the tele"

I had the good fortune earlier this week to spend a few days in the southern part of Thailand, on the island resort of Phuket. Normally the island is bustling with tourists so much so it is hard to move around in an evening, but not so right now.

It seems all the tourists are staying home or going to other places throughout the region. This has lead to allot of head scratching and brain storming by the hundreds of bar owners across the island, looking for new ways to get the people into their pubs, clubs and restaurants.

Yesterday for the many readers in Australia andyou might have stopped for a few hours to partake in the "State of Origin" match on your local tele. Well so did hundreds and I mean hundreds of ex-pat Australians in Phuket and Bangkok (and all over the country) man thousands of miles from their home shores.

Three bars in Soi Easy (an entertainment street of great delight) in Phuket have ABC AP in their bars all catering for the Australian tourists, but the one that does it best has two kiwi owners [sorry could not resist this one]. By 16:30 last night you could not move in their pub. It seemed like every Australian tourist who was on holiday in Phuket came out of their hotel rooms, their condo's, holiday homes, resorts or wherever and flocked to Patong beach as if drawn by some magic flute to see the men in Red and Blue do battle.

I had to get a plane back to Bangkok and left at 17:00 after fighting my way out of the bar, and it was strange to note of all the bars and clubs I drove past out to the airport, there was no one there at all. They were all back down at the beach at the Aussie Bar watching TV.

This got me to thinking on the way home why did the other pubs, who had ABC AP in them not have so many people in them? When I landed in Bangkok an hour later I decided to do a quick straw pole and drove past a few pubs on the way home to see what they were like, if they were full or empty. To my surprise many of them were empty, the ones who offer to their patrons ABC AP that is, even the new guys who have just put systems in.

So this morning when I got up I rang a few of the local pubs and asked what they did and it was not such a mystery after all.

Word of mouth and the power of the mobile phone, when combined with the good customer service, good fellowship and a chance to meet some ex-pats thousands of miles from home you end up with a full bar. Between two bars in two cities last night a good 65% of the adult ex-pat Australian male and female population in Thailand were glued to the tele all because of the fine job the team at ABC AP Sport does these days.

KU Band

Nothing much to report this week as I have not been able to spend much time doing any DX, other than looking at some of the Superbirds on Sunday night. The usual Japanese KU feeds are there, and I love the sports gambling on the motorcycle races on one of their channels.

A few new channels popped up on the Philippine network Dream this week, one FIFA channel that will make all the soccer lovers happy and Reality TV.

CCTV9 joined the Astro mux from Malaysia, as did a few major changes to some of the other Chinese channels (Look in this months Astro magazine for full details).

Channel 11 NEWS 1 continues to confound me on Thaicom 2/3 KU, it is a great news channel but I can not find any details on it, nor have I seen any press on it. Anyway keep up the good work guys, and the English, well done.


A few new channels this week and it seems lyngsat is saying Solar is back on Agila 2, but we still do not get a signal from them just across the Gulf of Thailand.

Interesting watching one of the Christian mission channels called the "Hope" Channel on PAS 2, as my daughter goes to one of their schools here in Thailand, and it is all a bit strange hearing some of the USA based comments on us here. That might explain the attitude of the new head master (smile).

Lots of changes going on, on most of the Insat birds as the feeds for the elections fall off and new channels are being brought on stream.


Set them up right lads … So many of the XSAT's set top boxes made by Pace Asia, we get to work on out there in the region have never ever been set up correctly, I did a hotel last week that had;

1. All the channels set up on the wrong satellites [used Thaicom 2/3 rather than AS 3S]

2. All the LNB settings all set up incorrectly, and god knows how that box ever worked, it said it was on the KU lnb when it was on the C Band (sorted it out in the end)

3. The superjack dish positioner they had all set up to satellities we can not even see in Asia

4. All because they did not know what they were doing - must be a lesson here some where [you think?]


Lots of mesh dishes taking the place of what would normally be solid KU Band offset dishes across the region, and really working well. Consider this if you need a large KU Band offset that needs to go into a place that is hard to get at or has a high wind loading.


What gossip there is none…

Have the regulars who watch CNBC seem Bernie on a other network of late along with his friend Stephen?

Noted MWEB doing a good clone of EuroSportNews ..


Great to see all the Kiwi sport this week what with the rugby and the cricket.

The F1 this week was the best I had seen for ages.

Look for the sports menu this Friday.

Philippines users look at your new FIFA channel (lucky people)..

Asia needs more sport from the USA, when will dish or directv start to bring in NHL, NFL, NBA channels with local state matches. AFN carries it, so why not an Asian wide sports network on one of the many VOA channels? I was listening to game One of the NHL yesterday on the internet brought to you with the aid of directv, so how about an Asian feed as we do not all have access to ESPN.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Dharmesh Bamrolia

DD's DTH on air on NSS 6!!!(India beam)
DD's DTH has started on new freq.12730 V and s.r.27500,
with 7 channels including DD-1.

Also note about new s.r. - 27500 for freq.12650 H for DD's previous DTH channels.

Best regards

From Herb Gardiner

Daystar tv is up and running again on B3 Globecast mux.

From the Dish

PAS 8 166E 4014 V Occasional feeds on , SR 5632, FEC 3/4.

Apstar 1A 134E 4034 H New APID for Satellite Radio Guangdong on : 102.
Apstar 1A 134E 4045 H "SZTV" has started on , Fta, SR 4420, FEC 1/2, PIDs 160/80.

AsiaSat 4 122E 3881 H ""CBN" is back on , Fta, SR 26500, PIDs 560/563.

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 12511 H Occasional feeds on , SR 4340, FEC 3/4.

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 3905 H "Reuters World News Service" is encrypted again.

NSS 6 95E 12646 V New SR for the TARBS World TV mux on : 28066.
NSS 6 95E 12650 H New SR for the Doordarshan mux on : 27500. Indian beam
NSS 6 95E 12730 V "DD Bangla, DD Saptagiri, DD Malayalam, DD Oriya and DD Gujarati" have started on , Fta, SR 27500, FEC 3/4, PIDs 503/603-508/608,
Indian beam.

Yamal 201 90E 3989 L "Shkolnik TV" has left , moved to 3674 L.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H "Thai TV Global Network" has started on , Fta, PIDs 7201/7202, no SID.(Global Beam RRsat mux)
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3840 V "Sadhna Super Channel" has started testing on ,Fta, PIDs 321/322.(Asia Beam)


Latest on Foxtel Dispute

From http://www.union-network.org/unitelecom.nsf/0/90948A5FC872EB96C1256EA100490731?OpenDocument

Subscribers to Foxtel's new digital Pay-TV service face 18-month delays after the operator turned refused to negotiate with disgruntled contractors. The Pay-TV operator has been offering "self-installation" for subscribers, and even investigated paying couriers to perform the "migration" of existing connections to digital in order to bypass the subcontractors. Subcontractors are so incensed they have flagged expanding industrial action to include cable internet connection and even Telstra phone line maintenance.

Foxtel CEO Kim Williams refused to attend a forum designed to address the subcontractors concerns over inadequate rates. Instead Foxtel has been supporting connection contractor BSA's attempts to avoid dealing with unions representing installation subcontractors. "BSA will have to start to open the door for CEPU recognition or face increasing industrial turmoil in their business," says CEPU Organiser Shane Murphy. Recent industrial action by subcontractors secured increased rates in the order of 10% to 20% in some areas, although for some jobs, including satellite installation, there has been no increase in rates at all. The CEPU is calling for future pay increases of "at least CPI or better" for subcontractors.

Foxtel on course, despite the bumps and grinds

From http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/05/27/1085641651092.html

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.

But Mr Williams conceded in his speech at a business lunch yesterday that problems with technical contractors in past months have delayed the installation of Foxtel's heavily marketed digital service.

Sales of the digital service now well exceed 250,000, but only 140,000 have been installed in homes. Mr Williams would not say how many sales were to new customers.

In April, a month after it had launched its digital service amid great fanfare, Foxtel - jointly owned by Telstra, Kerry Packer and Rupert Murdoch - was forced to curtail its $15 million advertising campaign in the face of problems installing the service.

Demand for digital Foxtel outstripped the company's ability to install the service, partly because of a technicians' strike - now resolved - but also because of inadequate technical and call-centre staffing.

"We have worked with our installation contracting companies to address the issues with the installers - rates, work practices and work flow," Mr Williams said yesterday.

"We have substantially boosted and stabilised installation capacity. In fact, we are now achieving more than double the rate of daily digital installations compared with the launch on March 14 and more than treble the rate in January and February before our digital launch," he said.

Many new and existing customers might still have to wait up to several months before their digital service was installed, but Mr Williams said queues were "synonymous with virtually all successful consumer product launches".

"They are a nice problem to have when one considers the alternative," he argued.

He said also that most customers buying the new service were buying premium packages.

"Just 3 per cent of Foxtel digital subscribers are taking our entry level package, basic-only, which compares with 20 per cent on the pre-digital service," he said.

(Craigs comment, only 3 percent are taking the basic digital service because the other %97 signing up are totally unaware the $48 basic digital service exists. Take a look here at the choices available http://www.foxtel.com.au/1323.htm SURPRISE!! there isn't a basic service listed!)

The reality of Pay TV

From http://www.crikey.com.au/media/2004/05/28-0004.html

A recent Media section in The Australian, which is published by News Ltd, the owner of 25 per cent of Foxtel, had a long story on how Pay TV's advertising revenue was rising, up from $67 million in 2002, to $93 million last year. "Pay TV ads pack a powerful punch" screamed the headline.

Well, seeing it was a News Ltd paper, Mandy Rice Davies' observation springs to mind of that "they would say that, wouldn't they". But how did the reporter know that the punch was powerful? Not a mention of viewing numbers of any sort in the article. As Crikey observed last week, there's a real dearth of information about who watches PAY TV's many channels.

Pay-TV's performance gap

Foxtel and its spokespeople, from CEO Kim Williams down, remain coy about just how many subscribers the Pay TV group has, how many these are switching from analogue to the new digital service, and how many actual new subscribers are being signed up.

Compared to the amount of information about Free to Air (FTA) watching patterns, Pay remains a black hole, emitting very little light or information and as a result comparisons are hard to make. Well Crikey can help. The numbers are out there, not actual bums on seats at home watching (hopefully some kind soul will read this and fill this gap in Crikey's knowledge) but share points for the various Pay TV channels and overall share figures for subscription TV and FTA.

Oztam, the ratings group, provide five city metro share figures for the FTA and Subscription TV (STV). So far this year among the FTA Networks, there's been a small shift in market share with Nine losing some ground. But while Ten has had good gains, SBS has seen the biggest rise in its share.

For Pay TV, the numbers show it more popular during the day but suffers a significant turn off from 6pm onwards when prime time viewing starts on the FTA networks. That's a significant development as Foxtel would have us believe that Pay TV is a significant alternative at all times to FTA.

It isn't and the turn off is a 'death' trait for any program or network, especially in the peak night viewing period. What Pay TV's spinners don't say is that to suffer a turn-off in the highest viewing period of the day is tantamount to admitting that viewers want to see the FTA programs which are often first run local and imported product.

And the ban on "the siphoning" of popular sports programs would be a factor, but not as important to regular viewing habits as Foxtel would have us believe. It is significant to Foxtel however because it prevents the use of popular live sports programming as a driver to gather up and maintain subscriptions. That's what happens in Britain with News Corp associate, Sky.

The Oztam numbers also show that Pay TV's share is highest in Sydney, followed by Melbourne and then Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. Crikey has not yet seen the regional Oztam figures. The turn off also happens in all major metro markets.

So look first at the 18-hour period from 6am to 11.59 pm. So far this year Oztam says Pay TV's share has gone from an average of 13.9 per cent in the first survey, to 12.4 per cent in Survey Four which started on May 16. FTA's share has risen, from 86.1 per cent to 87.7 per cent. In Sydney in the same period Pay TV's share of all viewing has eased from 16.1 per cent to 14.7 per cent. FTA's share has risen. In Melbourne a similar story, but in Brisbane Pay's share is up and the FTA share is down.

When you get to Adelaide and Perth, the FTA habit is strongest. In the South Australian capital for example, FTA's share has risen from 89.3 per cent to 90.3 per cent in the first week of Survey Four, according to Oztam. Pay's share has sunk from 10.7 per cent to 9.7 per cent, a sharp fall.

In Perth Pay's share has fallen sharply, from a 10 per cent average in the first survey to only 6.3 per cent in the first week of Survey four. In contrast FTA's share rose to 93.7 per cent the highest share in the five major cities. Pay's share in Perth was the lowest for the 18-hour period.

But look at the changes in the 6pm to 11.59pm period, the prime time period where the FTA networks compete so strongly. Nationally Pay TV's share this year averaged 9.9 per cent in Survey One1, then eased to 8.9 per cent by the first week of Survey Four. Compared to the 18 period, those figures are about a third lower. The National FTA share is higher at just over 91 per cent.

Looking at the Pay share in Sydney in the 6pm to 11.59pm period, there's a smaller drop-off, from 12.5 per cent to 11.5 per cent, in Melbourne its from 9.8 per cent to 8.4 per cent, in Adelaide, 7.9 per cent to 7.5 per cent and Perth, from 6.1 per cent to 4.5 per cent. In Brisbane there's no change, 10 per cent in Survey One and the same share at the start of Survey Four.

But if you look at Oztam's figures which breakdown Pay TV into channels on the same basis as the FTA Networks, there's an even greater contrast.

In the week May 16 to May 22 for the prime time of 6pm to 11.59pm for the five city metro markets, ABC had a 15.3 per cent share, Seven, 21.8 per cent, Nine, 25 per cent, Ten, 21.6 per cent and SBS 4.7 per cent.

Of the 31 Pay TV channels measured individually and reported by Oztam, not one reached a one per cent share, the highest being Fox 8 and TV 1 with a 0.6 per cent share, followed by Fox Sports One and Two, Lifestyle Showtime, UK TV with a half a per cent share. Looking at the 18 hour period, from 6am to 11.59pm and the picture is a little better for Pay, confirming that viewing is higher during the non- prime time periods during the day.

In the 18 hours the top rating Pay channels were Fox 8 with a 0.9 per cent share, followed by TV 1 with a 0.8 per cent share. Interestingly Disney had a rating during this period of 0.6 per cent, which is when lots of younger children who are not at school, might be watching. FTA share is lower in this period with Nine the loser, down to 23.5 per cent from 25 per cent, ABC, Ten, and Seven lose a smidge, but that's all. SBS drops sharply as well.

Another interesting point is that looking solely at the share of the FTA networks in the year so far, there's a definite drop in the Nine Network's share, down from 27.4 per cent share in the first period to 25 per cent in the first week of week four. Seven's has edged up a touch from 21.4 per cent to 21.8 per cent, the ABC recorded a small gain, up from 15 per cent to 15.3 per cent, while the big gains were made by Ten, up from 20 per cent to 21.6 per cent and SBS, up from 3.7 per cent to 4.7 per cent, which, proportionally is the biggest gain of all.

KOREA: DMB opens age of hi-tech convergence

From http://www.asiamedia.ucla.edu/article.asp?parentid=11560

DMB to provide television and radio programs to wireless terminals such as mobile phones

The satellite DMB (digital multimedia broadcasting) system, expected to start commercial service in the second half of the year, embodies one of the most advanced current receiver technologies.

The system is designed to provide television and radio programs to mobile phones, laptop computers and other devices via satellite transmission, with the user able to pickup broadcast signals in vehicles moving at up to 150 kilometers an hour.

SK Telecom, Korea's largest mobile-phone operator, and its Japanese partner Mobile Broadcasting Corp., launched the world's first satellite for DMB use in March. TU Media, 30 percent owned by SK Telecom, expects to handle the satellite services, providing 11 to 12 television and 26 audio channels and data services to the country's three mobile-phone operators. Monthly fees are expected to be around 12,000 to 15,000 won.

TU Media displayed its satellite DMB technology at a high-tech exhibition in Seoul last week, where mobile-phone manufacturers Samsung Electronics and LG Electronics also introduced their newly developed DMB phones for the first time.

The Korean Broadcasting Commission will make its final decision on the company to be granted the license for satellite DMB business in August, waiting on the National Assembly's decision on revising the current broadcasting law, which bans mobile-phone operators from beaming television programs on the networks.

Most anticipate that the National Assembly will pass the revised broadcasting law, with no clear objections in sight, and expect that TU Media will win the license by default. TU Media expects to start DMB services after September, once it receives a license from the broadcasting commission.

To provide subscribers with broadcast news and entertainment through wireless terminals could be attractive to local mobile-phone operators, desperately in search of relief in an increasingly stagnant telecom market where 75 percent of the total population is already registered as mobile phone users. Industry insiders believe that the DMB services can attract 6 million subscribers after five years and 8 million by 2010.

According to a recent study by the Electronics and Telecommunications Institute, DMB services will generate over 14 trillion won over the next six years in mobile services, equipment and content.

"DMB will succeed CDMA mobile telephony as the major growth engine for Korea's information technology sector, generating an additional demand of 14 million handsets annually and expanding the domestic market of wireless equipment to an annual 1.3 trillion won by 2010," said an official from ETRI's public relations office.

Dongwon Securities analyst Joh Sung-ok expects SK Telecom's market dominance, controlling 52 percent of the country's mobile-phone subscribers, to be strengthened should the DMB services make a successful start.

"SK Telecom's advanced level of development will likely give them more control of the local wireless market once the DMB services kick in. The number portability policy had a minimal impact on SK Telecom's dominance in the local wireless industry. And now they seem to have secured the advantage in a new market with huge commercial potential," he said.

TU Media is currently negotiating with mobile-phone operators KTF and LG Telecom Co. over the distribution of earnings in the DMB business. However, the talks haven't been going smoothly, with KTF even threatening to abandon its plans to join TU Media as a shareholder. TU Media insists on distributing 6 to 7 percent of subscriber service fees to mobile-operators. However, KTF and LG Telecom insist they should take 50 percent of the earnings, since TU Media will rely on their user pool and distribution channels.

Some industry insiders also complain of the high royalty payments to be imposed on Korean phone manufacturers once the high-priced DMB phones hit the market.

DMB phones expect to be sold at around 700,000 won to 800,000 won, meaning Korean phone manufacturers will be forced to pay hefty royalties to U.S. chipset maker Qualcomm, which takes 5.25 percent of every CDMA-based handset sold in Korea.


Some good news items in the news section lately be sure to have read. My email is flakey today so no Lyngsat or Jon's Asia Weekly Column in todays update.

Daystar TV will start June 1st on Globecast B3. I wonder how long before the Mormon's are knocking on Globecasts door?

Sun TV which is a Tamil pay channel is also now listed on 12524V (just Colour bars at the moment). Website for the service is www.suntvaustralia.com

State of Origin, was seen B1 12316H 6980 Vpid 308 Apid 256 and of course FTA on ABC Asia Pacific.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Bruce

eSat bi -directional internet

Hi Craig.just a note to inform you of an existing bi-directional internet service that is available anywhere in New Zealand now.We are the installers for the Wanaka area.Check out their site at www.esat.co.nz . there is a number of units already in service throughout the country,both islands.

Regards Bruce Barnett,
Barnetts Radio and T.V.Service,

From Mohammed Joned

Euro 2004

Sport Live Coverage

Champion League
RCTI via Palapa C2
RTM1 via Measat 1
VTV3 via MEasat 1

Euro 2004

RCTI via Palapa C2
TV3 via Measat 1

From the Dish


ABU with AsiaSat, SARFT to cover 'Poverty Reduction Conference'

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may212.htm

MUMBAI: The Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) in cooperation with Asia Satellite Telecommunications Company Ltd. (AsiaSat) and the State Administration for Radio, Film and Television (SARFT) of the People's Republic of China is providing the delivery of content relating to the Poverty Reduction Conference being held in Shanghai, China from 25 -27 May to local and national television audiences, says a release.

Broadcasters across the Asia-Pacific region and around the world are being offered satellite interview opportunities via AsiaSat 4 with World Bank president James Wolfensohn, UNDP administrator Mark Malloch Brown, Asian Development Bank vice president Geert van der Linden, UNAIDS executive director Peter Piot and others.

"This is a conference on how to take successful programmes and scale them up; how to enable poor people to be the central force for change and not an object of charity; and how to manage programmes and policies over time to achieve results that truly make a difference in people's life," says the World Bank president James D. Wolfensohn.

Co-organised by the Government of the People's Republic of China and the World Bank, the Shanghai Poverty Reduction Conference will be structured as a dialogue in which key decision-makers will share their insights on what has worked, what has not, and why, within various economic, social, and institutional contexts as they defined goals, designed programs, experimented and learned during implementation.

"By actively giving access and participation in this international conference we are ensuring regional and national participation to a very important global dialogue," said ABU secretary-general David Astley. He added "Our objective here is to make international news as accessible on local, national and regional television and radio as it is through the international news carriers, and to make such knowledge and information more accessible to local audiences."

Among the six hundred participants invited to attend, more than 500 represents international and local registrants, representatives of governments, civil society groups, U.N. agencies, multilateral development institutions, bilateral aid agencies, and regional development banks.

"We are very pleased to work with both the ABU and SARFT on this project. The high-powered region-wide C-band footprint of AsiaSat 4 facilitates the dissemination of regional news and events to audiences around the region and beyond. We are honoured to play a role in the global dialogue on poverty reduction," said Sabrina Cubbon, general manager marketing of AsiaSat.

By providing interview opportunities and access to information generating from the global conference, the ABU and AsiaSat seek to increase regional participation in the global economic development dialogue.

This first-time collaboration between the ABU and the development organisations in reaching local and national broadcasters attempts to address information access issues for countries generally unable to participate in such events, adds the release.

(Craigs comment, a bit late but scan Asiasat 4 anyway)

Budget 2004: More radio and television funding

From Press Release: New Zealand Government

Hon Steve Maharey
Minister of Broadcasting

More radio and television funding

A $20.6 million Budget 2004 package supports broadcasters to get New Zealand stories and people on air, says Broadcasting Minister Steve Maharey.

The new funding builds on substantial increases committed in previous budgets and signals the government's commitment to support the development of New Zealand's cultural identity through radio and television.

"NZ on Air receives an additional $12 million (all figures over four years unless otherwise stated) to maintain local television programming hours as costs of production rise and to increase the quality and diversity of the projects it supports.

"An additional $4.7 million is going to Radio New Zealand to enable it to:

enhance its news, current affairs and features programming;

develop the RNZ website to provide audio on demand;

carry out more in depth audience research; and

promote National Radio on FM.

"Radio New Zealand International also receives $3.9 million over three years starting in 2005-06 (including $2.6 million capital funding in that year) to buy and operate a new transmitter (announced on 18 May 2004).

"Television New Zealand receives increased funding next year to implement its charter, as part of decisions announced in Budget 2003. Direct funding for charter programming rises from $15 million this financial year to $16 million in 2004-05 and $17 million annually from 2005-06 onwards," Steve Maharey said.

(Craigs comment, I hope some of its put into expanding the Satellite service..)

Regional television gives budget black mark!

From Press Release: Regional Television Broadcasting Association

The Regional Television Broadcasting Association of New Zealand (RTBA) is outraged that the Government in today's budget has once again failed to deliver on its repeated promises to provide funding support for the country's regional television stations.

RTBA chairman Jim Blackman says the lack of budget funding is particularly galling when successive Labour Governments and Ministers have continually promised the struggling channels that support would be forthcoming.

He says this latest slap in the face makes those promises even more hollow when support for regional TV has been highlighted as important and published as part of the party's broadcasting manifesto election after election.

This lip service claim of support is clearly a smokescreen and verges on dishonesty.

The current Minister of Broadcasting has claimed repeatedly that he supported a funding application to Government but despite several comprehensive submissions from the Regional Television Broadcasting Association, there has been no support at all.

"We were certainly not expecting the level of taxpayer assistance that has been showered on Maori TV by this Government ($57million) or the ex gratia TVNZ top-up of $12 million to help it 'meet its charter obligations'," says Mr Blackman.

"Many of our stations currently meet and exceed charter requirements and have been doing so for years. Our members operate far more economic operations on shoestring budgets than other broadcasters. All we are seeking is assistance to provide local news and current affairs services. This is not unreasonable given the massive amounts these other channels have expediently received."

A small amount of support would also enable regional television channels to significantly increase the quality of programming.

"Twenty per cent of the people surveyed in recent research undertaken by NZ on Air watch regional television. If a television programme on mainstream television attracted 20 per cent of viewers, that would be cause for celebration. Perhaps regional television and its viewers are not elitist or 'trendy' enough to be considered important."

Mr Blackman says that the increasing number of people who tune into regional television channels is proof of the value and popularity of a viewing alternative. While many seek safe, family viewing, others gain a sense of participation and reinforce their New Zealand or ethnic identify or their own values and experiences - aspects of television broadcasting that mainstream broadcasters continue to struggle to deliver.

"It is clear this Government simply does not intend to recognise the worth of regional television. But a national regional television service can survive in the long term only with some assistance from the Government. If stations fail, the Labour Government can only blame itself."

(Craigs comment, the regionals need to get real here a lot of them are running "filler" e.g Dwelle, Bloomberg, CCTV9 which is hardly relevent as "local regional tv")

Foxtel on track to hit targets

From http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/05/27/1085461888823.html

Foxtel is on track to hit its target of profitability by mid 2006, chief executive Kim Williams said.

He also said the company is on track to convert all its customers to digital by 2006 and it was on track to achieve minimum penetration of 25 per cent by 2008.

Speaking at an Australia Israel Chamber of Commerce luncheon, he said that as of Thursday morning, just over two months since the launch of Foxtel digital, the company has sold well in excess of one million subscriptions and installed more than 140,000 homes.

Digital sales to date, combined with Austar's sales, were well in excess of 400,000.

(Craigs comment, who does he think he's kidding...)

Digital watch

From http://www.theage.com.au/articles/2004/05/26/1085461820943.html

They say that if you have your health and good friends, you have everything you really need in life. But then there is television. We can deny it as much as we like, but we cannot live without it. On average, Australians watch about 22 hours of TV a week. One in three Melbourne households has three TVs or more. Even then, we cannot watch everything, so 62 per cent of us have one video-cassette recorder in our homes, and one in four of us has two or more of them. As if that's not enough, 24 per cent of us have pay TV connected to provide another 40 or 50 channels of choice.

But it's not just what we watch that matters. Increasingly, it's how we watch it. Retailers report that sales of home-theatre systems, giant plasma screens and projectors that can turn a bare lounge-room wall into a giant TV screen, are rocketing. So are sales of digital set-top boxes that allow us to view free-to-air TV in its new digital form, with better pictures, better sound and access to new services, such as enhanced sports coverage. Commercial Television Australia, which represents the commercial networks, says that with digital set-top-boxes selling for as little as $250 - compared to $700 when they were introduced - 322,000 units have been sold, and recent monthly sales have exceeded 30,000.

The daddy of them all, however, is Foxtel Digital. You cannot have missed the ads for it on TV and the constant spruiking of it in the press, particularly the News Ltd papers, whose parent company owns 25 per cent of the pay TV company. And the hype is working. More than 100,000 Australian households have been connected to the new service in just a few months. Another 150,000 are in the queue for digital pay TV, with some being told they might be connected in August or September. Foxtel says 13,000 homes are being connected each week, despite recent industrial action by installers, which delayed work for several weeks.

It seems that most joining the service are existing Foxtel subscribers upgrading to digital. Despite spending a reported $15 million to market the service, only a quarter of those riding the digital wave are said to be new subscribers. That must worry Foxtel executives, who hoped the new service would almost double the company's current subscriber base of 1.1 million Australian homes by 2008. But that's their problem.

The important question is whether it works. After almost two months of having Foxtel Digital at home, I'm not convinced that the extra $20 a month that I'm paying (all up, almost $100 a month) is worth it. I have access to a few extra channels, including one that is wall-to-wall European sport and another that seems pitched at skate-boarding teenage hoons, and heaps of new audio-only music channels. But mostly it's the same old channels looking slightly clearer than they did before, with enhancements on a few of them that I hardly ever use.

For example, on one AFL football game a week, I can press a button on the remote control and watch a replay of a goal from a different angle. On the Sky News channel, I can press the button and get access to Federal Parliament. The magic button also gives me access to a range of pay-per-view movies costing $5.95 each, on top of the monthly bill.

But there are two much more important issues for those with Foxtel Digital. The first is the remote control unit. In the good old days, we could have two channels on the go at once, pressing just one button to alternate between them. It was a handy device, especially if we were watching a movie but wanting to keep an eye on the cricket score. The new remote controls do not allow that convenience. We have to return to the complicated and time-consuming electronic TV guide, scroll through to the category of program we want (movies, sport, news, entertainment, etc), scroll through the array of channels available within that category and then press "select". It is a fundamental and very annoying flaw in the new system.

The second is even more crucial. In the good old days (here we go again), we received a monthly magazine detailing every program on every channel for the forthcoming month. We could plan, circling with a pen the movies, shows or sporting events we wanted to watch up to four weeks in advance. It was an excellent and handy guide. Now, digital customers get no magazine. All the channel numbers have changed. Viewers must use the cumbersome on-screen program guide, which is difficult to navigate and only extends out for a week in advance, not a month.

Setting the planner to alert you to a program you want to watch is complicated and, anyway, you have to be watching TV when the show begins to be reminded that it is on. I have missed so many good movies because taking the arduous journey through the on-screen guide for just one week can take an hour or more and is too much of a chore.

Pay TV is a luxury. The more expensive digital version is an even greater luxury. And until Foxtel makes it cheaper and more viewer friendly, I suspect most Australians will stay away.

PAIBOON: The man who’ll launch ShinSat into a new era

From http://nationmultimedia.com/page.news.php3?clid=6&id=114368&usrsess=1

Paiboon Panuwattanawong carries the weight of a satellite on his shoulders, specifically Shin Satellite Plc’s soon-to-be-launched broadband Internet satellite iPSTAR.

Dumrong Kasemset, chairman of Shin Satellite Plc, once described Paiboon as one of his most valuable staff members due to his being in charge of ShinSat’s Thaicom 1, 2 and 3 satellite projects since the start in 1994.

There is no doubt that Paiboon, 44, is one of the few Thais who knows all the nooks and crannies of the industry.

That is why ShinSat, founded by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra’s family, entrusted Paiboon to run the newly founded iPSTAR Co, which is developing the US$350-million (Bt14 billion) iPSTAR project.

“Initially we didn’t think of making iPSTAR but a fourth conventional satellite. Later we switched to iPSTAR to ride on the wave of regional broadband Internet growth,” said fast-car lover Paiboon.

ShinSat started the iPSTAR project in 1997 to be the flagship of the Thaksin family business. It will be sent into orbit late next quarter.

“It’ll break even once 30 per cent of its capacity is occupied,” Paiboon said.

More than 10 per cent of the satellite’s capacity had already been reserved, said an iPSTAR executive who asked not to be named.

The satellite’s shadow will cover Asia and Australia as it taps millions of broadband Internet users.

Paiboon said that initially the satellite would offer as much as 200 gigabytes before being reduced to 40 gigabytes to keep investment costs down.

Getting iPSTAR off the ground has been no easy task. Shortly after the project was initiated the baht nose-dived, discouraging foreign lenders. It took a year and a half for the money to arrive.

As part of it pre-launch drill, iPSTAR will shortly undergo a vibration test after recently passing a thermal-vacuum test.

Paiboon has focused his attention on the technical, operations and management side of the business, leaving sales to someone else.

“I’m not good at the money thing. If I could go back in time, I would have enrolled in a finance course,” Paiboon said.

The whiz kid bagged bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electric engineering from Yale University and Carnegie Mellon University respectively.

He was not a satellite expert to start with, but picked up the technological know-how after joining ShinSat as a satellite-systems manager in 1992.

Before that, he worked at Seagate Technology (Thailand) as a quality-assurance manager and later at AT&T Telecommunications Products (Thailand) as a product-realisation engineer.

He said he could still remember the thrill he experienced when ShinSat assigned him as a mission manager for the Thaicom 1 satellite launch in 1994, making him the first Thai to assume such a role.

“I was the only Thai mission manager in the launch-control room. I was working with foreign staff from the launch firm. My role was to make the final decision on whether the satellite was ready to go,” he said.

In terms of his management style, Paiboon said he believed in giving his staff a chance to express their talent and trying to keep them happy.

“As there’s just a few satellite experts in Thailand, we have to treat them well,” he added.

Working in the Shinawatra-family satellite business, Paiboon has had to learn to cope with external pressure, since its every move has drawn plenty of attention from the public and opposition parties.

Paiboon knows he cannot relax and spend time pursuing his favourite sport, hang gliding, until iPSTAR is safely in orbit.

He will not, however, have too much time to relax as he has another big endeavour waiting.

With the Thaicom 1 satellite due to expire in 2008, ShinSat is now mulling over whether to replace it with a conventional satellite or one with iPSTAR technology.

“If iPSTAR is successful, perhaps we’ll create another iPSTAR to replace Thaicom 1,” Paiboon said.

Zarlink Tuner First To Meet Full Performance Demands of Stringent Industry Standard for Advanced Satellite Services

From Press Release

OTTAWA, CANADA, May 26 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Zarlink Semiconductor (NYSE/TSX:ZL) today introduced the ZL10038 device, the industry's first single- chip tuner to fully comply with the new DVB-S2 (Digital Video Broadcast- Satellite 2) international transmission standard. The ZL10038 tuner is designed for advanced satellite STBs (set-top boxes) delivering high-speed Internet, HDTV (high-definition TV) and other broadband services to consumers.

With equipment meeting the demanding benchmarks of the DVB-S2 standard, satellite TV companies can offer cost-effective, bandwidth-intensive services such as affordable high-speed Internet for rural areas not reached by other broadband technologies, increased TV channel selection, and expanded HDTV services.

Recent satellite Internet deployments have been hampered by the price of bandwidth and equipment. Improved bandwidth capacity provided by advances in higher order signal processing techniques outlined by the DVB-S2 standard, combined with new two-way satellite access technology, enables the cost- effective rollout of broadband Internet access services.

For TV broadcasting, DVB-S2 provides 30 percent more bandwidth than previous satellite standards, allowing operators to broadcast 25 standard definition or six HDTV channels from a conventional 33 MHz transponder.

"There is a growing need for sophisticated and affordable set-top boxes that deliver bandwidth-intensive services," said Bob Ferreira, product line director, Consumer Communications, Zarlink Semiconductor. "Our advanced modulation ZL10038 tuner is a highly integrated, compact chip that is implemented directly on the set-top box motherboard, making it simpler and less costly to use than discrete component approaches."

The market for DVB-S2 devices is expected to grow quickly over the next 24 months, primarily due to North American demand for satellite broadband access and HDTV services. Global equipment manufacturers are now evaluating the ZL10038 tuner for next-generation STBs. More than 55% of DVB-S compliant STBs manufactured in China already use Zarlink tuners, according to company research.

Industry's first DVB-S2 tuner chip

The ZL10038 device is a single-chip wideband direct conversion tuner that meets the full DVB-S2 performance requirements by supporting both higher order 8-PSK, and 16-QAM, 16-APSK (amplitude and phase shift keying) modulation schemes. With alignment-free operation, the tuner provides the necessary RF-to- baseband performance required for DVB-S2 systems.

DVB-S2 receiver designers must currently choose between a lower- specification integrated silicon tuner designed for DVB-S (QPSK) applications, or a more expensive high-performance 'can' tuner solution. However, silicon tuners originally designed for QPSK applications do not deliver the low implementation losses needed to receive 8-PSK and 16-QAM signals in real-life operating environments, which include an RF spectrum crowded with strong unwanted signals, signal impairments caused by adverse weather conditions, and poorly installed equipment.

Zarlink's ZL10038 tuner offers low integrated phase jitter (maximum 2 degrees), low IQ (in-phase/quadrature) imbalance, strong intermodulation performance, and high total signal power handling capability to match the performance of DVB-S2 demodulators and provide a front-end solution operating as close as possible to the theoretical maximum (the "Shannon Limit"). Guaranteed tuner performance across the full operating temperature range places the ZL10038 tuner in a class of its own, making it a natural selection for DVB-S2 receivers.

The ZL10038 integrates all major tuner functions, including a selectable RF by-pass, programmable baseband filters, and a VCO (voltage controlled oscillator) that requires no alignment or recalibration and offers both automatic and manual tuning options. A "sleep" mode helps STB designers comply with energy-saving initiatives such as ENERGY STAR(R).

Requiring minimal external components, a compact tuner design based on the ZL10038 device may be implemented on the STB motherboard within an area less than 30 mm x 20 mm. The ZL10038 tuner is pin and application compatible with Zarlink's QPSK (quaternary phase shift keying) tuner, the ZL10036, allowing designers to implement a single application solution for DVB-S, DSS, and DVB-S2 tuners.

Availability and price

The ZL10038 satellite tuner is in production and priced at US$4.55 in volumes of 1,000. For more information, please visit http://products.zarlink.com/profiles/ZL10038.

About Zarlink Semiconductor

For almost 30 years, Zarlink Semiconductor has delivered semiconductor solutions that drive the capabilities of voice, enterprise, broadband and wireless communications. The Company's success is built on its technology strengths, including voice and data networks, consumer and ultra low-power communications, and high-performance analog. For more information, visit http://www.zarlink.com/.

Certain statements in this press release constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Such risks, uncertainties and assumptions include, among others, the risks discussed in documents filed by the Company with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Investors are encouraged to consider the risks detailed in those filings.

Zarlink, ZL, and the Zarlink Semiconductor logo are trademarks of Zarlink Semiconductor Inc.

A high-resolution photograph is available at http://news.zarlink.com/visual_center/. Zarlink, ZL, and the Zarlink Semiconductor logo are trademarks of Zarlink Semiconductor Inc.

Zarlink Semiconductor

CONTACT: Zarlink, Michael Salter, Media Relations,613 270-7115, michael.salter@zarlink.com; United States, Natalie Sauve,High Road Communications, 613 236-0909, nsauve@highroad.com; Europe, SimonKrelle, Pinnacle Marketing Communications, 44 1908 2355 22,simonk@pinnacle-marketing.com

STAR to celebrate 'Utsav', everyone is invited

From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/701675.cms

MUMBAI: STAR is launching its new entertainment channel STAR Utsav on June 7 as a country cousin to its flagship STAR Plus. It is the network’s 9th channel; but from the point of view of marketing strategy it is significant as it will be the group’s first and only free-to-air channel. Does the move herald the return of a free-to-air strategy for a broadcasting network that has always sung paens to the dual-revenue model of both advertising and subscription fees?

The official line is that STAR Utsav’s target is to expand the cable and satellite (C&S) homes market. For distribution, it is the small towns and district centres that are being targeted.

There are a large number of cable-connected homes in towns where cable operators do not run pay channels. Typically, their bouquets are a few free-to-air enterainment channels with a solitary movie being run as a video feed by the cable operator, a STAR spokesperson said. These audiences have not been exposed to STAR Plus.

“We intend to grow the C&S market not eat into the channel share of our competitors,” Kevin Vaz, STAR’s executive VP-head of sales, told ET. The advertising strategy of the channel similarly aims at getting the ‘mass’ brands on board who aim at semi rural markets and who find STAR Plus’ ad rates too expensive.

‘Utsav’ is also a strategy to compete with and take away advertising now going to several free-to-air channels like SAB TV and Sahara Manoranjan as well as to pay channels like Zee TV

“We intend to get our ratings above that of say Zee TV; that will make us a platform for advertisers keen to associate with programmes like ‘Kyunki Saas..’ but cannot afford STAR Plus rates,” says STAR’s Kevin Vaz. For prime time programmes, ‘Utsav’ will be offering starter rates as low as Rs 51,000 for 30-second spots compared to STAR Plus’ whopping Rs 15 lakh, Mr Vaz added.

STAR has structured ‘Utsav’ as a low-cost channel based on re-runs and with absolutely no expenses budgeted for fresh programming. A spokesperson told ET that since the audience ‘Utsav’ is aiming at are those who have not viewed STAR Plus, the old soaps run on Plus will be repeated. These include the old Neena Gupta’s ‘Saans’ when STAR Plus was still No 3, as well as more recent shows like ‘Rajdhani’ and ‘Kisme Kitna Hai Dum’.

The channel will also air the earlier episodes of currently-running soaps on STAR Plus like ‘Kyunki Saas Bhi...’ and ‘Kundali’. After all ‘Kyunki Saas...’ is now 4 years old. Even those who have seen it, have forgotten what they saw then, a STAR executive said. The inevitable afternoon movie for the housewife will also be part of the menu.

TVC Online: Meanwhile, TVC, a direct sales company that has pioneered teleshopping in India, has launched a 24-hour teleshopping channel called TVC Online. TVC Sky Shop as a teleshopping retailing brand has so far been part of the programming of several channels including STAR Plus, SAB TV and Zee TV. Karuna Samtani, one-time head of programming of Zee TV, is heading the channel TVC Online as executive director.

DTH project to begin next month

From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/701085.cms

NEW DELHI : Doordarshan's ambitious Rs 500 crore DTH project will begin next month offering viewers a bouquet of 40 channels, including some free-to-air private channels.

At a meeting of the Prasar Bharti board here on Wednesday, it was decided to increase the number of channels in the bouquet from 30 to 40, a Prasar Bharti spokesman said.

The board gave approval to a proposal as part of which DD National News and DD India would be available in Britain in partnership with BSkyB, he said.

"DD National News and DD India will be set up on BSkyB's DTH platform for UK viewers. For this, a new company, Prasar Bharti Europe Ltd, will be set up with a share capital of 10,000 pounds," the spokesman said.

He said All India Radio Director General Brijeshwar Singh and his counterpart in DD Navin Kumar would be on the board of the company.

"Also, Prasar Bharti's counsel in Britain , Peter Harvey, will be on the board of the company which will be based and incorporated in London ," he said.

The Prasar Bharti board also gave a go ahead to a Planning Commission approved Rs 50 crore project on development of software on Indian classics and folk tales.


NZ Budget tomorrow, hopefully some funding for some sort of TVNZ digital?

Congratulations to REN...Joining the Big Dish club (3.7m)

League tonight State of Origin Game 1, usually seen as a feed. ..

From My Emails & ICQ

From Me

Feed seen this afternoon
B1 12367V sr 6000 "newslink" Fec 3/4 V pid 100 A pid 200
No audio??

From Stephen Mills

Hi Craig just did a scan of the services on B3 yesterday evening DAYSTAR back on 12501 and on 12525 where CTN previously was comes up with colour bars although it is listed as daystar on the channel no. I wonder if there is a new channel coming on that with the colour bars.Regards Stephen Mills

From Gareth E Welsby

RE: TechTV

Dear Craig,

Just to advise that G4 Media Inc. the new owners of the
TechTV service have advised us that they will be ceasing
their international distribution of TechTV on Asiasat-3 at
3,760 MHz on 25 June 2004 (revised from 13 June 2004)
with the intention of devoting more attention to the USA

Gareth E Welsby
Channel 8 Ltd

(Craigs comment, The latest is the new Tech/G4TV programming will be distributed by E! so expect it to be added in amongst the gossip and showbiz stuff on E!?)

From the Dish

PAS 2 169E 4126 V "NBN World" has started on , Fta SR 3075, FEC 3/4, PIDs 1160/1120.

PAS 8 166E 3880 V "ABS-CBN Channel 2-3" are FTa.
PAS 8 166E 3950 V "BCN - Box Cinema Network, UBS and CTS - Christian TV System" are back on PowerVu, SR 10125, FEC 3/4, PIDs 53/54-73/74.
PAS 8 166E 4050 V "TVB Xing He Channel" has started on , PowerVu, PIDs 1360/1320.
PAS 8 166E 4060 H Occasional feeds on , PIDs 1560/1520.

PAS 8 166E 12422 H "ComNet and FM America" have started on , Fta, APIDs 3606-3607.Inter FM is back on APID 3605.

Apstar 1A 134E 4045 H New SR for the SZTV test card on : 4420.
Apstar 1A 134E 4100 V "Shandong TV" is back on , PAL.(Still handy for Dxer's)


Fast access for remote regions

From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay.cfm?storyID=3568582&thesection=business&thesubsection=telecommunications&thesecondsubsection=general

Thai satellite operator Shin Satellite could be just a week away from signing a deal with Telecom and internet provider Iconz to bring high-speed internet services to the remotest parts of the country.

News agency Reuters quoted Shin chairman Dumrong Kasemset yesterday as saying deals in New Zealand were close to being signed with two companies.

Auckland internet provider Iconz has confirmed it is one of those companies. The other is believed to be Telecom, however the telco is making no comment.

The deals will allow communities beyond the reach of Telecom's Jetstream and wireless broadband services, to get high-speed internet access using a small terminal and a satellite dish.

Satellite is used in countries such as Australia to supply rural communities with decent internet access.

Iconz general manager Sean Weekes said there was business to be had in the backblocks of New Zealand where finding a reliable internet connection was no easy task.

"There's a demographic of consumer that can't get any connection other than dial-up. It will do wonders for them." But he warned that the technology had a niche target and would be more expensive than more commonly used broadband services New Zealanders had come to know.

"It mustn't be confused with DSL [Jetstream] in terms of pricing."

A 1 megabit per second (Mbps) download link would cost about $2000 a month, with the 1.2-metre satellite dish receiving the service costing $900 to $1000. That would put the service out of reach of individual families, but it could be used to service multiple sites, such as schools, council offices and local businesses.

In a separate deal, Telecom is negotiating with a satellite provider to service "region 15" of the Government's Project Probe initiative, which aims to get broadband to all schools by the end of the year.

Region 15 covers the remotest of schools, but a deal is yet to be struck, despite a March target.

Shin said last year that it would invest $15 million in building a satellite earth station in Albany to support its local services. Local contractors are understood to have been recruited.

Shin has been trialling internet services using borrowed capacity from an Intelsat satellite covering the area. But it will launch its services on its own new US$350 million "bird", the IPStar-1, which is expected to be in orbit and functioning in the next two months.

IPStar-1's will have three "spot beams" covering the country.

Weekes said Iconz had been successfully trialling the Shin service and was hiring a company that would act as installer for the service.

Shin Satellite is 51 per cent-owned by Shin Corp, the flagship of a telecoms group founded by the Prime Minister of Thailand, Thaksin Shinawatra.

Shin's New Zealand representative, John Humphrey, said the contracts were under negotiation and work on the earth station was under way.

Hammers fan nails TV rights

From http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,9665204%255E23215,00.html

ORIGINALLY, Australian soccer fan David Lewis had just wanted to watch his team. Now he owns the exclusive Australian television rights to its game and has fielded an unwanted marriage proposal from England.

Lewis, a Sydney information technology businessman who has been a supporter of West Ham United for 32 up-and-down years, was appalled that no Australian network intended to telecast a division one promotion playoff against Crystal Palace on Saturday night and says he "couldn't stand it any more".

Lewis - just wanted to watch his team

Setanta, which telecasts niche sports programs through a closed satellite network, had the industry contacts to help Lewis buy from British Sky Broadcasting the rights to the game, which determines which of the two London clubs will reach the English Premier League next season, for broadcast at Australian clubs and pubs.

"I said I'd underwrite the whole thing and I'll put it on around the country," Lewis said.

"Setanta said they'd never done it before like this - a football fan buying the exclusive rights to the broadcast of a match from 24,000km away. To their credit, they went out on a limb to support what's become a people power thing.

"I've had an enormous number of e-mails from around the world since my getting the rights was put on the West Ham website last Friday.

"I even had a marriage proposal from the UK. She was so impressed that someone would go to that trouble. I didn't reply - I didn't think my wife would be too happy."

So far six Australian clubs and pubs in four cities have agreed to sell $25 tickets to the game and Brisbane West Ham fans can watch the midnight kick-off on Saturday night at the Pig 'N' Whistle pub at the Riverside Centre. Crystal Palace supporters are also welcome to purchase tickets, which Lewis said would be available from the pub today.

Lewis said a non-disclosure agreement means he cannot divulge how much he paid to acquire the rights and then cover the costs of the Australian broadcast.

But industry insiders say he might have had to pay BSkyB between $5000 and $25,000, depending on how favourably it viewed the tale of one football fan's obsession.

AUSTRALIA: Moguls won't be in picture for new TV network: Labor

From http://www.asiamedia.ucla.edu/article.asp?parentid=11497

Media moguls Kerry Packer and Rupert Murdoch would never get their hands on a fourth commercial television licence under a Labor government, Opposition communications spokesman Lindsay Tanner told the Labor caucus yesterday.

Mr Tanner and Labor leader Mark Latham strongly favour allowing a new free-to-air network to be established in competition with the existing three commercial networks by 2007.

"Packer and Murdoch, but particularly Murdoch, will not get a slice of a fourth network under Labor," a Labor source said yesterday.

This month Mr Latham said a fourth commercial network was a reality. "It's going to happen eventually - it's a question of timing," he said.

Mr Tanner sought to assure colleagues who are nervous about a fight with media operators ahead of the election that the advertising market could support another network - and that the Government's legal timetable meant the issue had to be raised this side of the election.

In the past two years, TV ad revenues have grown 17.3 per cent to $3.1 billion a year. In the five years to 2000, TV advertising grew by about 25 per cent.

Two government reviews, to report by the end of the year, will make recommendations about what to do on a possible fourth network. The Broadcasting Services Act prohibits the introduction of new commercial licences before the end of 2006.

Mr Tanner told his colleagues that the sale of a fourth commercial licence could be a financial boon, providing a windfall of up to $1 billion that could be spent on services.

East Turkestan: Chinese-language NTDTV harassed by Beijing

From http://www.unpo.org/news_detail.php?arg=21&par=663

The New York based television station New Tang Dynasty TV is a valuable mean of expression and news source for oppressed peoples in China, like the Tibetans and Uyghurs.

Authorities in Beijing have been harassing New York-based television channel New Tang Dynasty TV (NTDTV) since its launch in February 2002 as the China ensures it maintains its grip on Chinese-language electronic media.

NTDTV's contract with satellite operator New Skies Satellites (NSS) for Asia transmission recently ended after prolonged financial and political pressure from Beijing. NTDTV has now resumed broadcasting to China and Asia via Eutelsat's W-5 satellite covering Asia.

China has showed itself ready to use the most reprehensible methods to protect its monopoly, including threats, political and financial pressure and blackmail.

Regrettably some Western telecommunication companies cave in to Chinese pressure and suspend broadcasts of channels that challenge the Chinese communist party monopoly of the airwaves.

Reporters Without Borders (Reporters sans frontières) fears that Beijing will keep up the pressure, particularly against Eutelsat, the French broadcast regulatory agency (CSA) and the French government, following resumption of NTDTV broadcasts to China and the recent inauguration of the channel on the Hotbird satellite to Europe and the Middle East.

Netherlands-based satellite operator NSS had begun broadcasting the channel on open signal to Asia on 1st July 2003. But just three days after the start of broadcasts, NSS encrypted the signal preventing Chinese satellite dish owners from seeing the channel.

The decision was taken following threats of financial reprisals against the company made to NSS representatives in Beijing. In January 2004, pressure was intensified to ensure that NTDTV was completely excluded from NSS-6 Asia satellite transmission. NTDTV management many times requested NSS to restore the open signal broadcast but this was refused, and on 1st May 2004 the NTDTV transmission to Asia ended.

Beijing accuses NTDTV of belonging to the banned Falungong movement, which it considers a ³diabolical cult². Many of the channel's volunteers are indeed followers of Falungong, but NTDTV offers a range of programmes, in particular news programmes that provide a sharp contrast with the propaganda on state television CCTV.

NTDTV told Reporters Without Borders that other companies had refused to broadcast or host the channel on their satellites for fear of Chinese reprisals. At the start of 2004, Philippines satellite operator Mabuhay cancelled plans to transmit a special Chinese New Year broadcast after threats from the Chinese ambassador in Manila. PanAmSat, which carries the Chinese state broadcaster CCTV on many of its satellite platforms worldwide, has also refused to broadcast NTDTV.

Through CCTV, Beijing broadcasts on 30 different satellite platforms worldwide, while six is enough to ensure coverage of 99% of the world¹s population.

This massive presence allows the government to blackmail operators. In 2002, CCTV left the operator Taipei International because it decided to accept NTDTV. The state channel signed a new contract after the removal of NTDTV. In February 2003, the US operator Atlanta ADTH went back on an agreement in principle to carry NTDTV, for fear of losing contracts with Chinese channels.

Since 1st May 2004, NTDTV is once again accessible to satellite dish owners in China thanks to transmission on the W-5 satellite by the Paris-based Eutelsat.

NTDTV is now freely accessible to more than 200 million satellite viewers worldwide. The channel was approved in April by the French Superior Audiovisual Council (CSA). Reporters without borders fears that the CSA and the French government are coming under official pressure from China for this licensing decision.

Moreover, Eutelsat is legally obliged to comply with the principle of equality of access, pluralism and non-discrimination set out under Article 3 of the Convention that regulates this company under French law.

In addition to leaning on telecommunication operators, the Chinese authorities have several times prevented NTDTV journalists from working. Its reporters have been refused access to public events and press conferences in the United States and Europe under pressure from Chinese officials.

(Craigs comment, take note of that New Skies being pressured to remove a service off Nss6...)

Second pay-TV station MiTV poised to take on Astro

From http://biz.thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2004/5/26/business/8066888&sec=business

TAN Sri Vincent Tan Chee Yioun plans to launch Malaysia’s second pay-TV operator in October, a source familiar with the plans said yesterday, in a move to tap growing consumer demand amid a buoyant economy.

The new station will go head-to-head with Astro All Asia Networks Plc, controlled by T. Ananda Krishnan, which currently holds a monopoly over the subscriber-based TV market.

“It will offer about 80 channels and charge a monthly flat rate,” the source told Reuters.

The new station, to be called 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% in the year to the end of January.

Tan is betting on delivering MiTV using Digital Terrestrial Television Broadcast technology, which will drastically reduce costs, the source said.

Terrestrial digital technology, which has been used successfully in Britain and works through existing aerials, costs about 1/15th as much as satellite technology.

Tan took over privately-held Grafimatix Sdn Bhd, which holds a pay-TV licence, for some RM26mil and he has invested close to RM100mil to develop the station, the source said.

The station has plans for an initial public offering in about 2 years.

Astro took 7 years before selling its shares to the public in the country’s biggest IPO last year, which raised some RM2bil.

HK i-Cable To Distribute TV Channel In Shenzhen, China

From http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/040526/15/3kl28.html

HONG KONG (Dow Jones)--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, greatly expanding its reach in mainland China's television market.

Under the deal, the Horizon channel will be carried on Shenzhen Television Station's network starting Friday. In exchange, i-Cable will carry Shenzhen TV's satellite channel on its own platform, Hong Kong Cable Television.

"It is the first Hong Kong channel to be carried in full by a mainland television system," said Siuming Tsui, executive director of programming services, in a statement issued late Tuesday.

Though Hong Kong TV channels are widely distributed in neighboring Guangdong province, where Shenzhen is located, that doesn't bring in much revenue: local stations often just take the channels off satellites and put in their own advertising.

So the formal landing-rights arrangement will allow i-Cable to sell advertising for a much broader base of viewers. Press reports said Shenzhen TV has about 800,000 viewers in the city. By contrast, i-Cable, the media arm of local blue-chip conglomerate Wharf (Holdings) Ltd. (0004.HK), 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.

HONG KONG: I-Cable wins Shenzhen ad foothold

From http://www.asiamedia.ucla.edu/article.asp?parentid=11500

Hong Kong pay-television operator i-Cable Communications has been given approval to broadcast a 24-hour information and entertainment channel on Shenzhen's cable network from Friday

Hong Kong pay-television operator i-Cable Communications has been given approval to broadcast a 24-hour information and entertainment channel on Shenzhen's cable network from Friday.

The joint-venture deal could point the way for other local broadcasters to tap Guangdong's advertising market.

The company has signed a three-year contract that will see Shenzhen Television air i-Cable's Horizon channel on its cable network, which has 750,000 to 800,000 viewers. In return, i-Cable will broadcast Shenzhen TV-1, a news and variety channel, to its 666,000 Hong Kong viewers.

Both broadcasters will set up sales teams to sell advertising spots on their cross-border channels.

Tsui Siuming, Hong Kong Cable Television's programming chief, said Shenzhen Television would ensure that no advertising slots were spliced out and resold to local advertisers, a long-running and costly problem faced by Hong Kong broadcasters on the mainland.

"It is a breakthrough," Mr Tsui said, adding the deal would expand Horizon's nationwide coverage to 17 million to 18 million, compared with Phoenix Satellite TV with its potential audience of 20 million.

Horizon was set up in 2001 to cater for mainland audiences. In April last year it was granted broadcasting rights for upmarket hotels and foreign compounds.

Mr Tsui said the deal had been approved by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television (Sarft).

He said i-Cable was also in talks with other mainland broadcasters, including Beijing Media Group and Shanghai Media Group, on seeking similar agreements.

"We want to make sure that once the central government gives its approval to open the market, everything can proceed immediately," he said.

Industry watchers said while the scale of the operation might be small for i-Cable, it carried huge potential in the lucrative mainland market, which saw television advertising sales reach almost US$11 billion last year.

Yesterday's announcement would have come as a surprise to Hong Kong's free-to-air broadcasters, which have spent years negotiating with Sarft and Guangdong broadcasters over provincial landing rights and advertising revenue-sharing arrangements.

Asia Television was given a broadcasting licence in Guangdong in July 2002 and reached an agreement on sharing advertising revenue with local operators late last year.

However, it has not yet collected any revenue outside Guangzhou. Television Broadcasts is still waiting for landing rights in Guangdong, where its Cantonese channel Jade has ratings as high as 60 per cent.

"I-Cable's unconventional deal would be a big slap to TVB and ATV," said an analyst with a Singapore brokerage. "However, this might help TVB and ATV to negotiate with mainland TV stations in the future."

The Hong Kong government said yesterday it had given ATV a licence to broadcast its Home channel into the mainland as a satellite pay-television service.

STMicroelectronics' Technology Lowers Costs by Easing Installation and Configuration of Domestic Satellite Systems

From Press Release

New integrated circuits allow greater flexibility in satellite installations

GENEVA, May 25 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM - News), the leading supplier of silicon devices for set-top box (STB) applications*, announced today the availability of a complete Low-Noise Block (LNB) downconverter subsystem to help satellite broadcasters simplify installations and reduce costs. The new LNB subsystem combines up to eight signals on one cable, which can then be delivered to either a single STB or many STBs around the home via a simple splitter box.

The deployment of Digital Video Recorders (DVR) and dual-TV STBs brings enormous benefits to consumers and operators, but the complexity of each installation comes at substantial cost. For example, because the DVR allows a user to watch one channel while recording another, it requires two coaxial cables to be connected to the roof-top dish, one for each demodulator within the STB. A fully-functional dual-DVR requires four inputs from outside the home.

At the heart of ST's LNB subsystem is a new silicon integrated circuit, the SaTCR-1. This chip shifts the frequency of any input signal to an intermediate frequency that can then be combined with other similarly processed signals and passed down a single cable to a corresponding number of tuners in one or more STBs within the home. This capability allows consumers to upgrade a basic satellite free-to-air STBs to a DVR box without the need for an expensive site visit by an engineer.

"By using LNBs equipped with the SaTCR-1 chip, consumers can purchase additional STBs and be confident of a simple self-installation procedure," said Christos Lagomichos, General Manager of ST's Set Top Box Division. "Also, they can use the original set-top box with a second TV set, all without any modification to the satellite dish or any additional cables outside the home."

Control of the SaTCR-1 device is achieved through a cost-effective 8-bit microcontroller, the ST7LNB1. This pre-programmed microcontroller decodes DiSEqC (Digital Satellite Equipment Control) commands issued by the STBs within the home and controls each SaTCR-1 through a two-wire interface, without any additional external resources. The micro also supports seven pre- defined LNB applications. This simple control mechanism ensures that the host STB requires no new hardware to take advantage of the capabilities of a SaTCR- 1-enabled LNB. Furthermore, by including a microcontroller with upgradeable software in the LNB, ST is enabling innovative applications such as LNB positioning, intelligent diagnostic functions, and simple inter-box communication.

The SaTCR-1 and ST7LNB1 devices are available now priced at $3 and $1.5, respectively, in quantities of ten thousand units.

About STMicroelectronics

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.

NDTV on WorldSpace Radio

From http://www.agencyfaqs.com/news/stories/2004/05/26/9103.html

YOU can now hear NDTV news on WorldSpace. The news channel's Hindi and English streams will soon be aired on its network, according to satellite radio provider WorldSpace.

NDTV 24x7 and NDTV India will be joining the WorldSpace news bouquet of BBC, CNN, Fox News and Bloomberg, said WorldSpace MD, Mr K.R. Harish. The addition, he said, is part of their brand repositioning exercise and content improvement.

"The partnership with WorldSpace will help us jump shift our growth plans in the Indian market. The unique voice portability option is in line with the various plans for expansion of reach that we have drawn up," said Mr Nayak, CEO of NDTV Media Ltd.

WorldSpace, which bases its India operations out of Bangalore, also offers 31 channels from jazz to classical to old Hindi music.


Live satellite chat 9p.m NZ and 8.30p.m Syd time onwards in the chatroom tonight.

Anyone looked for the French Open Tennis feed? speaking of feeds Lyngsat reports a few feeds for "great sports" on Asiasat 3. So that may be worth keeping an eye on.

T.A.R.B.S what is it??? coming soon to Apsattv...a hint.... its a new tv service..

From My Emails & ICQ

From Splog

They have changed the symbol rate for Nss6 12646 V 28060
A new channel - BN Television BN R.Srpska

From the Dish

JCSAT 3 128E 12448 H Occasional Yozemi Sateline feeds on , SR 21096, FEC 3/4.(Japan beam)

Sinosat 1 110.5E 12440 V All radio channels in the CBTV Sat mux are now encrypted. (China beam)
Sinosat 1 110.5E CETV-KongKe has replaced CCTV 1 on 12622 V.CCTV-SD has left this mux, replaced by a test card. CCTV 9 and CEBsat Info Channel are now encrypted. (China beam)

AsiaSat 3 105.5E Occasional GreatSports Channel feeds on 4046 V and 4052 V, SR 4420, FEC 3/4.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E Occasional GreatSports Channel feeds on 4056 V and 4068 V, SR 5632, FEC 3/4.

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 3905 H "Reuters World News Service" is Fta.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3840 V "Nepal 1, Sadhana TV, Punjab Today and Mh 1" have started on , Fta,SR 26667, FEC 3/4, PIDs 257/258-321/322.


Govt ship deal not linked: ShinSat

From http://nationmultimedia.com/page.news.php3?clid=6&id=114275&usrsess=1

Shin Satellite yesterday denied opposition claims that |its broadband Internet satellite iPSTAR had won a frequency-coordination deal from a Hong Kong rival after Thailand awarded a Bt3.5-billion ship procurement deal |to China.

"The two events are unlikely to be connected," ShinSat chairman Dumrong Kasemset said at the press conference yesterday, which was called in response to the opposition allegation.

In his closing speech in last week's censure debate, Democrat Jurin Laksanavisit said that the Navy's procurement of offshore vessels from CSTC of China in 2002 was |a kind of trade-off for the upcoming iPSTAR to secure a frequency-coordination agreement from the Hong Kong-based operator of the AsiaSat 4 satellite.

General Chavalit Yongchaiyudh was deputy prime minister at the time.

ShinSat was founded by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's family.

IPSTAR, which is expected to go into orbit in several months' time, will be positioned at 120 degrees East, while the rival AsiaSat 4, which was launched late last year, is hovering at 122 degree East.

Such proximity prompted concern about a possible frequency jam, particularly over their main markets of China and Australia.

The Thai and Chinese governments started discussing possible resolutions to solve the satellites' problem in 1999 before reaching the frequency-coordination deal late last year.

Dumrong said that Chinese and Australian customers were expected to account for 25 per cent and 10 per cent, respectively, of iPSTAR's total customer-serving capacity |of 40 gigabytes.

"If we can't agree, it's estimated iPSTAR will lose 30 |per cent of its yearly revenue and AsiaSat 4 US$20 million [Bt8 billion] annually," he said.

IPSTAR is set to launch its service in China and Australia soon, he added.

Thailand is expected to account for 7 per cent of iPSTAR's total customer-service capacity.

A telecom industry observer said ShinSat had a big chance to secure many broadband Internet users in the Kingdom.

"Now the government is promoting low-cost broadband Internet services, aiming to see one million broadband Internet users within a year, up from the present 20,000," he said.

Dumrong said that if there are one million broadband Internet users, 20 per cent were expected to be iPSTAR customers.

He said that the firm would also sign contracts to provide iPSTAR service to new customers for e-farming technology in New Zealand in the next few weeks.

ShinSat's share price closed at Bt12.40 per share yesterday, up from Bt12 on Friday.

Thai Shin Satellite To Sign With Australia, NZ Ptnrs Soon

From http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/040524/15/3kj1y.html

BANGKOK (Dow Jones)--Shin Satellite PCL (SATTEL.TH) said Monday it will sign deals in the near future with partners in Australia and New Zealand to market its soon-to-be launched iPSTAR broadband satellite.

Shin Satellite's executive chairman Dumrong Kasemset told reporters that the company is expected to sign deals with two telecommunication operators in New Zealand in the next one or two weeks.

Meanwhile, four or five companies in Australia are also waiting to sign deals with the company pending an operating license from Australian authorities, he said.

"We are expected to get the license from Australia soon. The agreements will be signed shortly after that," Dumrong said.

The partners will help the company to sell broadband satellite services on its fourth satellite, iPSTAR, which is expected to be launched by the end of the third quarter.

He also reiterated that the company will sell new shares around early July to raise up to $90 million, which will be mostly used to repay short-term debts and serve as its working capital.

Shin Satellite is a unit of Shin Corp. PCL (SHIN.TH), which was founded by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra. Members of his family hold a majority stake in Shin Corp.

New Skies Satellites; Press Statement

From http://home.businesswire.com/portal/site/google/index.jsp?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20040524006193&newsLang=en

THE HAGUE, Netherlands--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 25, 2004--New Skies Satellites N.V. (AEX, NYSE:NSK), the global satellite communications company, today announced that it is engaged in advanced negotiations with a leading private equity firm regarding a proposal from this firm to acquire the Company. New Skies has also received proposals from other third parties and is in concurrent discussions with certain of these parties.

All current discussions contemplate a sale of substantially all of New Skies' assets and liabilities for cash at values representing a premium to the Company's current share price. Any such sale would be followed by a liquidation of the Company and the distribution of the cash to its shareholders. New Skies' business and operations would be continued by the purchaser, with the effect of the transaction being a change in ownership of the New Skies business enterprise.

Any agreement to sell New Skies' assets would be subject to the approval of New Skies' Management and Supervisory Boards. Consummation of a transaction, once agreed, would be subject to a number of other conditions including approval by New Skies' shareholders at an Extraordinary General Meeting and receipt of necessary regulatory approvals. In view of these conditions, New Skies anticipates that a transaction would be completed, and liquidating distributions paid to shareholders, no sooner than the end of 2004.

New Skies cautioned that there is no certainty regarding the final terms and conditions (including price) or timing of any such agreement, nor can any assurance be given that the current discussions will result in any agreement to sell the Company. New Skies expects to be able to make a further announcement regarding these matters in the near future.

Pulling Plug on Ethnic TV Shrinks Space for Diversity

From http://www.ipsnews.net/interna.asp?idnews=23889

SYDNEY, May 25 (IPS) - Sydney's ethnic community groups are outraged by the media regulating body's decision to pull the plug on an innovative television channel in Australia that has been giving a voice to them for 11 years now.

Channel 31, run by Community Television Sydney and Australia's first truly multicultural channel run by ethnic communities, lost its test licence in mid-April after the Australian Broadcasting Authority (ABA) decided to give a permanent community-television licence for Sydney to another group called Television Sydney.

Television Sydney (TVS) is a consortium of educational institutions that includes a sprinkle of predominantly Anglo-Saxon community groups.

In the wake of the ABA's decision, ethnic communities held rallies outside the Sydney town hall.

Meantime, some broadcasters are starting to look beyond this issue and trying to look at the possibility of using satellite and digital subscription channels to air programmes.

Community leaders argue that they have been disenfranchised now that the channel is off the air. ''The ABA has given the licence to an organisation which doesn't have the facility to broadcast - not at least for a year,'' screamed an angry Salvatore Scevola, an ethnic programme producer, at one rally.

''We have been broadcasting for over ten years and have built a monthly audience of 1.3 million in Sydney,'' Edmond Taouk, president of CTS, said in an interview.

''They (ABA) gave us 12 hours notice to go off air. . . . That's the amount of recognition they gave to our efforts of developing a huge network of ethnic production houses and running a successful community television station without even a dollar of government money,'' he added.

Community radio programmers say this shrinks the room for diversity in a media market already dominated by larger, commercial and mainstream interests.

''Losing the channel is a blow for ethnic communities, because a lot of people of non-European background within Sydney came to rely on different programmes broadcast on Channel 31, not only for news from their homelands but also for information on activities within their local communities,'' said Rihab Charida, a programme producer of Palestinian descent.

''Because we are marginalised in the mainstream media, it is important for us to have a media made by us and controlled by us,'' Charida told IPS.

Channel 31 had both news and entertainment programmes for various ethnic communities such as Italian, Arabic, Chinese, Vietnamese, Indian and Latin American. There were also current affairs programmes from left-wing groups.

The mix is a reflection of the fact that about one-third of Australians today are born overseas. The biggest communities are Greek, Italian with emerging groups of Arabic speakers, Latin Americans, those from the Baltic states and Chinese.

Taouk pointed out that the new consortium that got a community television licence, is 80 percent educational and only 20 percent community. ''And they haven't included us in that community component after all the community broadcasting we've done,'' he added.

But Professor Janice Reid, TVS chairwoman, said in a press statement: ''TVS has a strong commitment to deliver high quality Australian content and culturally diverse programming for all sectors of the community. We have been inundated with offers of support from many Channel 31 programme providers.''

But CTS says that TVS has refused to discuss with it the possibility of continuing the broadcasts on a temporary basis until it is ready with its infrastructure.

Gina Herro of ABA's licensing section told IPS that the authority cannot offer another temporary licence once a permanent one has been issued. But TVS can agree to allow CTS to broadcast using their licence on a transitionary basis.

When the federal government allocated in 1992 the spectrum for community broadcasting, it did so on the basis of freeing up the airwaves for community access in the name of equity.

But since the 1996 election of the conservative government led by Prime Minister John Howard, critics say there has been an assault on multiculturalism and the access and equity principles that underline that policy, and point to CTS as the latest victim of this trend.

Already, many ethnic community groups here see the ABA action as reflecting a trend in other Western democracies where ethnic minority groups are seen with a measure of suspicion by authorities.

''What we have seen is a bloodless coup,'' Farzin Yektaparast, an Iranian-born community television producer, said in an interview. ''The ABA wanted to give control of the station to someone whose agenda they know about and they could control.''

Added Charida: ''Mainstream stations don't cater to us. It's Anglo media made for them.''

''CTS ran a very diverse TV station. They had a diverse network of programme producers from the far right to centre and the far left in a political sense,'' noted John Reynolds, director of Actively Radical Television, a left-wing group that produced a weekly current affairs programme on global issues broadcast on Sunday nights.

''It has allowed access to a broad spectrum of perspectives to go on air from groups and communities who otherwise don't have access to the airwaves on government or commercial channels,'' he said in an interview. He expressed concern that the new operators may not be that accommodating of ''progressive political programming'' because of its educational institution focus.

''We created a very interactive community media in Sydney,'' argues Yektaparast, who was trained in Channel 31 and now works as a community media trainer and producer.

There were 18 hours of ethnic programming on prime time every week on Channel 31. TVS had indicated in their licence application that this would come down to less than four hours per week.

But a spokesman for Slice TV, the community component of the new licensee, denies plans to scrap ethnic programming. ''Our membership will be open to ethnic programme providers and we expect a big influx of them,'' John Curtis of Slice TV said in an interview.

''What worries people is the absolute power ABA has over making and implementing broadcasting law in Australia,'' said Zelinka. ''It is ridiculous to ignore and wipe out eleven years of cultural development of television in Sydney.''

TELE-satellite News - Number 21/2004 ­ 23 May 2004 -

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

Editor: Branislav Pekic

Edited Apsattv.com Edition

A S I A & P A C I F I C


CNN has confirmed its position as the international
market leader in television news in the Middle East,
according to latest research conducted by Ipsos Stat.
The survey shows that CNN reaches more people in a
typical day than BBC World or any other international
news channel reaches in a week. CNN ranks number one
against all other international channels, reaching
double the number of viewers in a typical week than
BBC World, and three times the viewers (than BBC
World) in peak morning and evening day parts. Research
reveals that CNN International reaches 21% of target
viewers daily, 38% weekly and 50% monthly and is
considerably ahead of its two closest competitors in
the region, BBC World and EuroNews (8%, 19% and 27%
for BBC World and 8%, 15% and 19% for EuroNews


Advertising rates on Arab satellite channels skyrocket
during reality TV programs and can be up to 130 per
cent of regular prime time rates, according to a
report by the Gulf News. A new report from Arab
Advisors Group said that the prime time on Arab
television channels extends from 9 p.m. to mid-night,
with Saudi Arabia as the reference time zone. With the
huge success of regional Arabic stations, the TV
advertising rates increased dramatically, especially
with the adoption of hit programs that attracted huge
audiences. Examples are LBC's Star Academy and Miss
Lebanon with a rate of $11,000, MBC's Fear Factor with
a rate of $10,000 and Future's Superstar with a rate
of $11,500 for a 30-second commercial spot. The rates
for regional satellite TV stations are usually higher
than the rates for local. For example the rate for
Future satellite TV's prime time reaches $5,500 while
the local channel has a rate of $3,000 during the same
time. As for the LBC satellite channel, the rate for
prime time reaches $7,000 and on the local channel
during the same time reaches $5,000, the report added.



Two more pay-television licence holders are pulling
the plug, highlighting the failure of government
efforts to broaden competition in the non-terrestrial
television market, according to a report by the South
China Morning Post. Yes Television (Hong Kong), a
subsidiary of Britain's Yes Television, said it would
quit the territory's pay-TV operations and surrender
its licence to the Broadcasting Authority. The move
followed a decision by niche broadcaster TV Plus of
Taiwan to end its pay-TV business last month. Yes TV
had invested HK$40 million in its three-year-old
service, and paid an annual licence fee of $1.37
million. Yes TV chairman and chief executive Thomas
Kressner had earlier admitted the company entered the
sector too early. He also said it was difficult to cut
its monthly fee of HK$298 as it needed to pay $198 to
PCCW for access charges. The firm will end its service
on May 31. Existing customers, numbering in the
thousands, have been transferred to its broadband
operation Yes TV Plus, which offers subscribed
content. The departure of TV Plus and Yes TV will
leave Hong Kong with just four pay-TV operators -
i-Cable Communications, Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting,
NOW Broadband TV and City Telecom's Hong Kong
Broadband Network.


The Jinying, or Golden Eagle, Cartoon Channel, the
first of its kind in China, is expected to open in
central Hunan Province this September. Officials said
that at least 50 per cent of air time of the channel
will be used for cartoons. Meanwhile, shows geared
towards teenagers will take up the rest of the time.
The channel will be one of the three cartoon channels
that are to be opened in China this year.


The Cable & Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia
(CASBAA) is bolstering its efforts to clamp down on
pay-TV signal piracy in the SAR, issuing "cease and
desist" letters to a number of bars and clubs in Hong
Kong that are illegally receiving satellite
broadcasts. The move follows a High Court ruling and
support from Hong Kong's Office of the
Telecommunications Authority (OFTA). If the venues
persist in broadcasting pirated signals, they could
face charges. The venues that have been contacted by
CASBAA are bypassing Hong Kong platforms-including
Hong Kong Cable Television, PCCW, Yes TV and Galaxy
Satellite Broadcasting-by buying illegal set-top boxes
that are receiving pirated satellite signals from
Thailand and the Philippines. Simon Twiston Davies,
the CEO of CASBAA, noted, "Pay-TV signal piracy is a
major issue for the broadcasting industry in Hong
Kong. In October 2003, it was estimated that the gross
cost associated with pay-TV signal piracy in Hong Kong
amounted to approximately US$27 million over a
12-month period."


Hong Kong's Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB) says
talks to strike landing rights and revenue sharing
agreements in China's Guangdong province are in good
shape and it expects to finalise a deal in the near
future, the South China Morning Post has reported. TVB
Group Managing Director Ho Ting-Kwan said the firm had
reached a consensus with the Guangdong Administration
of Radio, Film and Television (GARFT) on some
revenue-sharing principles after a meeting with its
director, Wang Keman, on May 10. A joint venture
between TVB and a GARFT unit, believed to be Southern
Broadcasting Media Group, is expected to be announced


Channel NewsAsia, the Singapore-based news and
information channel, is to start broadcasting to
viewers in China's top hotels and foreign residential
compounds. This comes with the granting of rights by
China's State Administration of Radio, Film and
Television, and the signing of a mutual landing
agreement in Beijing. Under the agreement signed
between MediaCorp, which operates Channel NewsAsia,
and China International TV Corporation (CITV), both
parties will work out the details for Channel
NewsAsia's distribution in China, and for China's CCTV
9 channel to be carried on cable in Singapore by June
1. The agreement opens up a potentially huge TV market
for Channel NewsAsia, making it the second Asian-owned
news network to be given landing rights in China.
Launched in 1999, Channel NewsAsia is viewed in more
than 16 million homes and hotels in 18 territories
across Asia.



Public broadcaster Prasar Bharati has slapped legal
notices to a dozen odd private TV channels and plans
to bill them for amounts which could run into crores
of rupees for stealing exclusive footage, without so
much as "by your leave". The notices sent to these
channels by Sanjiv Dutta, ADG, news, say the private
channels — Star, Zee, Aaj Tak, Headlines Today, NDTV,
Sahara, ETV — and the foreign ones had acted against
"all norms of professional ethics" without seeking



WOWOW Inc, one of the two main satellite pay-TV
service firms, said on May 21 its group net balance
fell into the red in the year to March 31. WOWOW said
its operating revenues fell by 2.2% to 61.61 billion
yen. WOWOW said the number of subscribers dropped by a
13,843 during the 12-month period to 2,484,681 as of
March 31, with the number of those canceling
subscriptions topping that of new subscribers.



Malaysia's Information Minister Abdul Kadir Sheikh
Fadzir said on May 19 a study will be carried out into
Astro's 5 ringgit rise in monthly satellite television
subscription fees, the Star reports. Astro is
increasing its monthly fees by MYR5 starting May 24.
The rise will be the first since January 2002. Many
subscribers have complained in the local newspapers
about the increase. Astro is owned by Astro All Asia
Networks. However, the broadcaster said the move will
serve to facilitate the improvement on the variety of
programmes and channels as Astro expects "to deliver
over a hundred channels by next year, courtesy of a
new Measat 3 satellite." Astro, controlled by
Malaysian tycoon Ananda Krishnan, has embarked on an
aggressive push to attract more viewers in Malaysia
and Brunei to the channels it shows through its pay-TV
services. The report also stated that the move to
raise the subscription rates might add RM83 million to
its annual sales given its subscriber base of 1.39
million people at the end of January.



CanWest Global Communications will be floating 68
million shares in its newly-incorporated radio and
television operation, CanWest MediaWorks (NZ) Ltd, in
June, in order to help reduce its debts. It is
expected by the company that public investors will
acquire approximately 30% of CanWest MediaWorks NZ,
with CanWest acquiring some 70% interest in the
outfit. However, CanWest may reduce its ownership to
64% of CanWest MediaWorks, if an over allotment is
fully exercised. On completion of the offering on June
29, CanWest MediaWorks NZ will use the funds raised
from the share sales, together with bank financing and
a further issue of shares, to also bag all of the
parent company's other NZ media operations: CanWest
RadioWorks and CanWest TVWorks. CanWest MediaWorks
NZ's raft of television brands will include
privately-owned TV network, TV3 and C4, the newly
launched free-to-air music channel.



The first Pushto language satellite television
channel, AVT Khyber, will begin test transmissions on
May 20. Based in Islamabad, the AVT Khyber will air
programmes on social, political, cultural and
socio-economic events besides news in Pushto. The
Pushtoons in Afghanistan will be the prime
beneficiaries of the new channel because unlike their
Pakistani counterparts, they can't understand Urdu



Activists, academics and students protested on May 17
in front of the Government Information Office (GIO) to
back demands that the government merge Taiwan
Television (TTV) and Chinese Television System (CTS)
into a public TV channel. While the cabinet's stated
policy is to sell the government's shares in the two
terrestrial TV stations, the GIO has not yet decided
whether to sell the stock to conglomerates or convert
one or both stations into a public television channel.
GIO Director-General Huang Hui-chen told lawmakers
during a legislative committee meeting that the GIO
has mapped out three possible scenarios for the two stations,
TTV and CTS. "One possibility is to
nationalize the two, another is to privatize them and
the other is to privatize one of them and nationalize
the other," Huang said. "However, I don't expect to
come to the final decision until the end of this
month." The GIO plans to hold public hearings to
solicit opinions from media activists, academics and
experts by the beginning of next month before sending
the draft statute regulating the shares in TTV
[part-owned by the provincial government] and CTS
[part-owned by the military] by the end of next month.
The government owns 25.64 per cent of TTV and 36.25
per cent of CTS. The Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT)
owns a 35.6 per cent share of Chinese Television
Company (CTV) and has a majority of shares in the
Broadcasting Corporation of China (BCC). To free the
media from political influence, the legislature passed
draft amendments to the Broadcasting and Television
Law last December, banning certain civil servants and
political party members from owning, funding or
assuming certain key positions in the media. The law -
which integrates the Terrestrial Radio and Television
Law of 1976, the Cable, Radio and Television Law of
1993 and the Satellite Radio and Television Law of
1999 - also asked the cabinet present a measure on
government shares at TTV and CTS six months after the
law took effect.




The South African Broadcasting Corp. has applied to
divide into a public service and a commercial service
- a step required by the Broadcasting Act of 1999. The
public broadcaster has invested $125 million over the
past four years in the local production industry.
Interested parties have until Friday to lodge
comments, and the SABC hopes to be able to proceed
with the split by the end of the year.


Many problems reported with Sexz.tv on NSS6. Hold onto your money....

Nice big dish up for auction

From my Emails & ICQ

From Simmo

F1 on palapa? Says F1 2004 on channel ID? monte carlo?
4188 Sr 6700

From Mr Humax

B1 Feed seen- Rugby
Super 12 Final - B1, 12367V, SR 6620, FEC 3/4.

From Jsat

Optus B1 12316H 6980

Womens netball

(Craigs comment, well I doubt it would be the mens netball.!...)

From the Dish

PAS 8 166E 3860 H "KFC Music" has started on , FTA, APIDs 651 and 901.The test card and Kiss Radio have left this mux.
PAS 8 166E 3950 V "BCN - Box Cinema Network, UBS and CTS - Christian TV System" have left
PAS8 166E 12405 H "TV Masala" is back on , Fta, SR 2207, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.

Apstar 1A 134E 4100 V "Shandong TV" has left (PAL).
Apstar 1A 134E 4160 H All channels in the CCTV mux on are now encrypted, except CCTV Kids.

Weekly SatcoDX News 14 May 2004 - 21 May 2004

NSS 703 (57.0E)



TV 5 feeds on 11.142 (V,1500): It has replaced SatLink feeds
CTV on 3.923 (R,3000,308,256,8190): It Has Started

PANAMSAT 7, 10 (68.5E)


Afrisat info card on 12.722 (V,26656,62,63,62): It has started
SABC 1 on 12.722 (V,26656,256,257,256): It's back encrypted
SABC 2 on 12.722 (V,26656,260,261,260): It's back encrypted
SABC 3 on 12.722 (V,26656,264,265,264): It's back encrypted
E TV on 12.722 (V,26656,272,273,272): It's back encrypted
Afrisat on 12.722 (V,26656,62,63,62): It has started regular programmes
A copy of SETMAX on 3.932 (H,19835,1160,1120,1160): It Has Started
India TV on 4.173 (V,3000,1160,1120,8190): Has Offically started 24Hrs Service from Today
Telly Track on 12.687 (V,3254,512,650,512): It has started
New Africa Network on 12.687 (V,3254,513,641,513): It has started



TV Lanka on 3.652 (H,9000,1160,1122,1160): New SR
TV Lanka - 2 on 3.652 (H,9000,1260,1222,1260): New SR
TV Lanka - 3 on 3.652 (H,9000,1260,1360,1320): It has started
TV LANKA /LAK HANDA on 3.652 (H,9000,1520,1520): New SR
no name on 4.037 (H,2300,33,36,33)

THAICOM 2,3 (78.5E)


WPTV Card on 3.600 (H,26667,519,720,8190): It Has Started
Feeds (Satmedia.tv) on 3.671 (H,13333,6177,6193): New PCR
Feeds (RR2-TR) on 3.671 (H,13333,6193,6193): New PCR
Feeds (VIC-TV TR2) on 3.671 (H,13333,6209,6193): New PCR
Feeds (VIC-TV TR1) on 3.671 (H,13333,6225,6193): New PCR
World peace TV on 3.600 (H,26667,519,720,8190): It Has Started
Feeds (Fasion TV) on 3.671 (H,13333,3105,3106,3105): It Is has Restarted
Feeds (Panjab Radio) on 3.671 (H,13333,513,1057): It Has Started
TVC Tv on 3.545 (V,26667,337,338,337): It Has Started
Test Bar VSNL on 3.545 (V,26667,353,355,353): It has Started
DrDish@TV [May 21,22,23- 12GMT to15GMT] on 3.671 (H,13333,1057,1058,1057): It has Started

ST 1 (88.0E)


CTS on 3.632 (V,26666,2097,2081,2097)
FTV News on 3.632 (V,26666,2609,2593,2609)
Formosa TV on 3.632 (V,26666,3121,3105,3121)
BBC World on 3.632 (V,26666,3633,3617,3633)
CTV - China TV on 3.632 (V,26666,4145,4129,4145)
Da Ai TV on 3.632 (V,26666,4657,4641,4657)
Public TV Service on 3.632 (V,26666,6193,6177,6193)
TTV on 3.632 (V,26666,7217,7201,7217)
TVB8 on 3.550 (V,7500,49,33,49): It has started
MATV on 3.550 (V,7500,1057,1058,1057): It has started
Channel [V] on 3.550 (V,7500,2097,2081,2097): It has started

ASIASAT 2 (100.5E)


Saudi Channel 1 on 3.660 (V,27500,512,650,8190): New NID
Al-Alam News Channel on 3.660 (V,27500,513,651,8190): New NID
Kuwait Space Channel on 3.660 (V,27500,2560,2561,2560): New NID
IRIB3 on 3.660 (V,27500,2695,2690,2695): New NID
Al Quran Al Karim on 3.660 (V,27500,660,8190): New NID
Voice of Saudi Arabia Kingdom on 3.660 (V,27500,670,8190): New NID
IRIB Radio 1 on 3.660 (V,27500,2693,2689): New NID
IRIB Payam on 3.660 (V,27500,2694,2688): New NID
Data Service on 3.660 (V,27500): New NID
KUWAIT SP. Channel on 3.660 (V,27500,2560,2561,2560)
Saudi Channel1 on 3.660 (V,27500,512,650,8190)
AL-ALAM on 3.660 (V,27500,513,651,8190)
IRIB3 on 3.660 (V,27500,2695,2690,2695)
Al-Quran Al-Karim on 3.660 (V,27500,660,8190)
Voice of the Kingdom 1 on 3.660 (V,27500,670,8190)
IRIB Radio1 on 3.660 (V,27500,2693,2689)
IRIB Payam on 3.660 (V,27500,2694,2688)
Res-Asiasat2 on 3.660 (V,27500)
UKI on 4.095 (V,5700,308,256,8190): It has started

ASIASAT 3S (105.5E)


STAR UTSAV on 3.780 (V,28100,519,668,8190): It's clear now
769 STAR UTSAV on 3.780 (V,28100,519,668,8190): It's clear now
†ZEE SE Asia‡ on 3.700 (V,27500,164,96,164)
Qatar TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1181,1182,1181)
Syria TV on 3.880 (H,27500,1111,1112,1111)
Emarat FM on 3.880 (H,27500,1412,1412)
Oman on 3.880 (H,27500,1141,1142,1141)
Sudan on 3.880 (H,27500,1191,1192,1191)
Libya on 3.880 (H,27500,1121,1122,1121)
Al manar on 3.880 (H,27500,1161,1162,1161)
Saudi 1 on 3.880 (H,27500,1171,1172,1171)
Oman Radio on 3.880 (H,27500,1712,1712)
Program One on 3.880 (H,27500,1812,1812)
Radio Quran on 3.880 (H,27500,1912,1912)
Zee SE Asia on 3.700 (V,27500,164,96,164): It has started

PALAPA C2 (113.0E)


BALI TV on 3.926 (H,4208,33,36,33)
no name on 3.977 (H,2539)

ASIASAT 4 (122.0E)


Linkstar on 12.274 (V,10000,869): New SR

APSTAR 1A (134.0E)


CCTV 3 on 4.160 (H,27500,512,650,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 5 on 4.160 (H,27500,513,660,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 6 on 4.160 (H,27500,514,670,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 8 on 4.160 (H,27500,515,680,8190): It's clear now
CCTV Kids on 4.160 (H,27500,516,690,8190): It's clear now
CCTV News on 4.160 (H,27500,517,700,8190): It's clear now
Guizhou Radio1 on 3.920 (H,6930,37,37): It has started
Guizhou Radio2 on 3.920 (H,6930,54,54): It has started
XinJiang Cable TV1 on 4.120 (H,27500,163,92,163): It's encrypted now
XinJiang Cable TV2 on 4.120 (H,27500,164,96,164): It's encrypted now
XinJiang Cable TV3 on 4.120 (H,27500,165,100,165): It's encrypted now

PANAMSAT 2 (169.0E)


Hope Channel Intl - SAP on 4.040 (H,5900,1160,1122,1160)
Audio 3 on 4.040 (H,5900,1160,1130,1160)


TV minnow fights SBS over ad ban

From AFR

Mike and Regina Boulos are not afraid of a fight. For the past six years, the husband-and-wife owners of ethnic pay television company Television and Radio Broadcasting Services (Tarbs) have been fighting Telstra and Foxtel to gain access to their network.

Now they are fighting SBS over its refusal to carry ads for Tarbs.

Tarbs operates 65 TV and radio channels, the bulk of which carry programs in Arabic, Italian, Greek, Turkish and 10 other foreign languages. The company claims it has 75,000 subscribers in Australia, paying $60 a month, and about 2000 overseas.

Tarbs started its pay TV service in 1998 when it picked up microwave spectrum licences after the collapse of pay TV operator Australis Media. Mr Boulos on-sold the licences to regional pay TV company Austar in 2000 for $140 million.

Mr Boulos said the number of Tarbs subscribers had increased 20,000 over the past year, thanks in part to the addition of English-language channels such as MTV, the Movie Network and CNN, which are pitched at second- and third-generation migrants.

In late 2001, Mr Boulos claimed that the company would have 350,000 subscribers in Australia by mid-2003. He blamed the 275,000 shortfall on a lack of funds.

"This business requires a lot of money in terms of subsidising the satellite dishes and set-top boxes," he said. "In late 2001, I was hopeful that a number of investors would come on board and help fund our expansion. That didn't happen."

Details of Tarbs' revenue and profit were not available. Mr Boulos said the company was "about 15,000 subscribers away from breaking even".

Mr Boulos said the reason for his long-running dispute with Foxtel was simple: the access fees set by the pay TV company were too high.

According to Mr Boulos, Telstra charges $750,000 per channel a year for access to its cable network, with Foxtel charging $245 a year for access to its set-top boxes.

A Foxtel spokesman denied it was charging $245 a year for access to its set-top boxes.

In April, Tarbs launched a two-year, $10 million marketing push. The campaign was initially aimed at 100,000 homes in Sydney's Canterbury-Bankstown area, using direct mail, door-to-door selling, sponsorships of community events and outdoor ads.

The campaign ran for six weeks in Canterbury-Bankstown and is now being launched in other areas.

Reaching potential customers through SBS is not an option, according to Ms Boulos, who said the government-owned multicultural broadcaster had consistently refused to carry Tarbs ads on its TV and radio channels.

"SBS runs ads for Foxtel and for World Movies [a pay-TV channel 40per cent owned by SBS]," she said. "But it will not accept ads for Tarbs, telling us that our proposed ads are too channel-specific."

A spokesman for SBS confirmed it had refused ads for Tarbs. "It offers services in specific languages to audiences from non-English-speaking backgrounds. That makes Tarbs a direct competitor to SBS."

Foxing on pay TV: new subscribers hard to find

From AFR.com.au

Kim Williams is happy to announce that 250,000 homes have subscribed to Foxtel's digital pay TV service since it was launched on March 14. But ask how many of those homes are first-time pay TV subscribers and the normally loquacious Foxtel chief executive clams up.

Williams will not reveal how many new subscribers have been lured by Foxtel's $15 million digital pay TV marketing blitz, claiming such details are market-sensitive.

The Australian Financial Review understands that Foxtel's digital push has attracted only 63,000 new subscribers, and the other 187,000 are existing subscribers to Foxtel's analog service who have upgraded to digital.

Foxtel's shareholders - Telstra, Kerry Packer's Publishing & Broadcasting and Rupert Murdoch's News Corp - are not spending $600million on the introduction of digital pay TV simply to convert Foxtel's existing 1.07 million subscribers to new technology.

Their plan to make Foxtel, which has lost more than $600 million over the past seven years, cash-flow positive by mid-2006 calls for 800,000 new subscribers by 2008.

The figure of 250,000 homes signed up is believed to be on budget, but the 63,000 new-subscriber number is reportedly lower than expected.

On the positive side, among digital subscribers, the average revenue per user (ARPU) - a key measure of success in subscription-based industries such as pay TV - is slightly higher than expected.

On May 16, Williams said Foxtel had installed digital pay TV in more than 100,000 homes. The roll-out has been disrupted by industrial action by the subcontractors hired by Foxtel's installation companies.

In the three weeks after March 14, fewer than 5000 digital services were being installed each week, compared with Foxtel's target of between 13,000 and 15,000.

The number of weekly installations is now about 13,000 and Foxtel says it will climb to 15,000 by next month.

But industrial action was not the only problem. One of the installation companies dramatically overestimated the number of installations it could handle each week.

The internet broadband war between Telstra and Optus that started in February reduced the number of subcontractors available to install Foxtel. They then ran into more installation difficulties than expected.

There have been other problems at Foxtel, including key management changes in recent months, rumoured problems in its call centre, a weak customer retention strategy and complaints from some customers about the price and content of its digital service.

Two of Foxtel's three shareholders declined to talk to the AFR. David Moffatt, the group managing director of Telstra's consumer and marketing division and a director of Foxtel, referred questions to Williams. News Corporation executives were unavailable for comment.

Peter Yates, chief executive of PBL and a director of Foxtel, says he is very happy with the management of Foxtel and the way it has handled the development, marketing and roll-out of digital pay TV.

"It is a very complex project to roll out," he says. "There were lots of issues to address under trying circumstances. Demand for digital pay TV has been higher than we expected because it is a great product."

Foxtel insiders insist that the lower-than-expected number of new subscribers is not a disaster. They claim the number will increase as positive word-of-mouth publicity spreads.

But right now, much of the word-of-mouth publicity about Foxtel's digital service is negative, with people complaining about long delays in installation, sloppy customer service and inexperienced call-centre staff.

PBL, News and Telstra are convinced that digital technology will boost Foxtel's subscriber numbers 75 per cent by 2008, cut its subscriber churn rate from 18 per cent today to below 15 per cent in 2007-08 and push the penetration of pay TV from 23 per cent of Australian homes now to between 35 per cent and 40 per cent in 2008.

Williams has said that Foxtel will break even when pay TV's penetration reaches between 26 per cent and 28 per cent. One analyst forecasts that Foxtel's earnings before interest and tax will climb from a negative $71 million in 2003-04 to a positive $384 million in 2007-08.

"Foxtel is on track to hit its target of profitability by mid-2006, converting all its customers to digital by 2006, and achieving penetration in the range of 35 to 40 per cent by 2008," says Foxtel's director of corporate affairs, Mark Furness.

Predictably, Foxtel executives say that consumers have embraced digital pay TV.

Patrick Delany, promoted earlier this month from director of digital to executive director, content, product development and delivery, says customer feedback is positive.

"The response has been fantastic," he says. "The level of demand from existing subscribers is evidence of that.

"The word-of-mouth has been exceptional. We underestimated the appeal of digital-quality pictures and sound, and we've been surprised at how many subscribers are using all the digital channels."

Subscribers to digital pay TV might like the product, but industry sources claim Foxtel has been deluged by complaints about poor customer service and long installation delays.

Some consumers are rumoured to have been told they cannot be hooked up until September. But Furness says the waiting time for installation varies from days and weeks in many areas to a few months in some areas.

"The vast majority of our customers are booked for installations within an 11-week period," he says.

Earlier this month, Foxtel said it would launch an advertising and promotions campaign "to better manage bookings and installations across various parts of Australia".

Details of that campaign are not available. But a Foxtel insider says it simply consists of existing ads for Foxtel's digital service with a new headline: "Join the queue."

"Telling consumers that they have to join a queue is an admission that the introduction of digital pay TV has been handled very badly," says one industry source.

"It is bizarre to launch a new product and then tell your prospective customers they have to queue to get it."

Foxtel staff report many complaints from customers about the price and content (a basic package costs $48.95 a month.)

Nick Falloon, a former chief executive of PBL and now executive chairman of Ten Network, has been a strident critic of Foxtel's monopoly on pay TV in metropolitan markets and - more recently - the pricing of its digital service.

Last month he infuriated Foxtel executives by claiming that three-quarters of Australians will never be able to afford to subscribe to Foxtel's digital network, which he describes as one of the most expensive pay TV services in the world.

In February, Williams told the AFR that price would not be an issue. "Digital pay TV is a very affordable product," he said. "The pricing has been done very carefully."

"Australians aren't silly," says one TV network executive. "They don't see a value proposition in pay television.

"Given the strengths of free-to-air TV, and until Foxtel moves significantly towards the production of original Australian programming, it will struggle against free-to-air TV and, equally importantly, the impact of DVDs."

A source close to Foxtel says that many customers have complained about the content of the digital service.

For digital subscribers, the basic Foxtel package has been expanded from 25 channels to 66. But only three of the 41 additional channels are new video channels; most are audio channels.

Foxtel did not respond to questions from the AFR about low staff morale and key management changes over the past five months, such as the exit of chief financial officer Sankar Narayan, who quit in February to join John Fairfax Holdings (publisher of the AFR), and Rick McKenna, who resigned as Foxtel's director of AFL operations last month to join the Nine Network.

"Foxtel has lost many talented senior executives over the past year or so," says one source. "The marketing department, for example, has seen constant change, including the exit of the marketing director [Karen Ganschow] and national marketing manager [Rhonda Brown] since December."

The Foxtel call centre is believed to have seen myriad management and staff changes since it was folded into the sales and marketing department last year (it previously operated as a stand-alone department).

"The staff turnover in the call centre has been very high," says one source.

"The result is a lot of inexperienced staff with poor product knowledge. And there is no customer-retention strategy in the call centre: if someone rings up to un-subscribe, there is no attempt to convince them to stay."

An effective customer-retention strategy is one of the key elements in cutting Foxtel's churn rate. In February, Williams said the churn rate had dropped from 30 per cent in 2001 to 18 per cent.

Foxtel's rivals in the free-to-air TV industry often claim that 75 per cent of Australian homes have tried pay TV since it was launched in 1994, but only 23 per cent have liked it enough to keep it.

Foxtel executives say the 75 per cent claim is wrong. Giving a rare insight into the number of homes that have subscribed to Foxtel and then dropped it, Furness says there are 645,000 lapsed subscribers in Foxtel's service area, which covers 4.97 million homes.

"We are currently marketing Foxtel digital to many of those former customers and are getting encouraging response rates," he says.

Taiwan celebrates satellite launch

From http://www.etaiwannews.com/Taiwan/2004/05/22/1085194844.htm

Top officials and scientists celebrated the successful launch of Taiwan's second satellite (ROCSAT-2) early yesterday morning, as the space vehicle was propelled into an orbiting altitude of 737 kilometers in the sky, and then established communications with ground receiving stations.

With the countdown, the 35-meter tall Taurus XI rocket carrying the ROCSAT-2 payload blasted off at 10:47:03 a.m. Thursday U.S. West Coast time (1:47:03 a.m. Friday, Taiwan time), from the Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.

Through a trans-continental video link, the successful satellite launch was witnessed by hundreds of the aerospace work crew, ground operation personnel, government officials headed by outgoing National Science Council minister Wei Che-ho, and journalists at the National Space Program Office in Hsinchu.

There was also an official Taiwanese delegation at the U.S. Vandenberg Air Force launch site, led by National Science Council Deputy Minister Shieh Ching-jyh , and joined by the press corps, American contractor technicians, and throngs of overseas Taiwanese groups.

"It was a successful launch. Everything went very well without a hitch... It heralds a new era of space science research for Taiwan... We have waited a long time for this and overcame a lot of challenges. This is the happiest day of my life," said National Space Program Office Director Lee Lou-chuan, who had been in charge of the project since its start in 1999.

"Once in orbit, the satellite will be wholly operated by our own Taiwanese crew at the NSPO Mission Control Center. It opens a new chapter in the development of our own domestic aerospace program and satellite imagery technology. The scientific research on upper atmosphere electrical phenomena carried out by ROCSAT-2 will elevate Taiwan's visibility in the world and enhance our cooperation with the international community," Lee shared to the press yesterday.

At about 8:25 a.m. yesterday morning, President Chen Shui-bian pressed the button to initiate the first contact and confirmed telemetry communications between ROCSAT-2 and Taiwan's ground receiving station in Chungli, Taoyuan, as it flies directly over Taiwan for the first time on its high-flying orbit above the globe.

Chen lauded the mission's success, "Coming right after the presidential inauguration yesterday, the space program team members have presented the best gift for the May 20 event and for the country as a whole. This is an exciting moment, and also a proud moment for all of the 23 million people of Taiwan. It is also an important milestone for Taiwan to advance towards international aerospace programs.

Accompanying Chen in the ceremony to signal the start of the first communication between the remote sensing satellite and the ground receiving station were Vice President Annette Lu , new minister of National Science Council Wu Mao-kung (???), and NSPO director Lee Lou-chuan.

Co-developed through 5-years of collaboration with the French satellite manufacturer Astrium, along with Taiwanese and American companies, the 724-kilogram hexagonal-shaped vehicle is Taiwan's own "Eye-in-the-Sky" that is capable of taking remote photographs of the earth with a 2-meter resolution.

Fifteen minutes after lift off from the launch pad in California, the ROCSAT-2 was separated from the rocket and went into orbit at 737 kilometers above the earth. The satellite completed its first telemetry signal feedback to a ground station in Kiruna, Sweden, an hour and 14 minutes after launching and confirmed the opening of its solar panels.

Over the next week, NSPO Mission Control Center will track the progress of space vehicle's flight as it gradually heads towards its final orbiting altitude of 891 kilometer.

National Science Council deputy minister Shieh Ching-jyh said he was greatly relieved with the success of the mission, as there had been delays due to technical problems during the testing phase. Shieh said the American rocket contractor Orbital Sciences Corp. had done a meticulous job ironing out the bugs with attention to quality control and engineering precision to ensure the smooth completion of the launch mission. He said OSC will also likely provide the rocket carrier for Taiwan's next satellite, ROCSAT-3, scheduled near the end of next year.

Taiwan's first satellite, 295-kilogram ROCSAT-1 was launched from the Florida Cape Canaveral on January 27, 1999. Originally planned with a life span of 4 years, the ROCSAT-1 is still operating and functioning with on its space imaging and scientific research mission.

PM: I did not order probe into Astro programmes, fees

From http://www.emedia.com.my/Current_News/NST/Saturday/National/20040522071413/Article/indexb_html

Both Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and his deputy, Da-tuk Seri Najib Razak, today refuted claims that the Cabinet had in-structed Information Minister Datuk Paduka Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir to investigate private satellite broadcaster Astro for allegedly airing programmes in breach of broadcasting regulations.

Abdullah also denied that the Cabinet had issued any directive to look at Astro's proposed RM5 hike in subscription fees which has met with some objections from customers.

Abdul Kadir, who has been on the warpath against Astro over the last week, was quoted in the Utusan Malaysia today as saying Abdullah had instructed him to investigate Astro for airing programmes with excessive sex and violence.

He had also claimed that Abdullah had asked him to look at Astro's proposed RM5 hike in subscription fees to which some of the station's 1.3 million subscribers have objected.

Abdullah today denied issuing either directive to Kadir.

"No, as far as I can recall, I never instructed Datuk Kadir to carry out any investigations on Astro," he said after attending the Public Sector Workers' Day gathering at Intan Bukit Kiara here.

Turning to Najib, who was seated next to him, Abdullah said: "We did discuss the issue of media content. I highlighted the matter to the Cabinet after my meeting with non-governmental organisations who raised concerns on domestic violence, rape and social decay in general.

"We are concerned about the contents of programmes aired on television and disturbing pictures carried by newspapers ...it is not confined to Astro but all media practitioners," Abdullah said. Najib concurred.

Abdul Kadir, who had earlier last week also claimed Abdullah had raised concerns about Astro during the Cabinet meeting, today backtracked, saying Utusan Malaysia had quoted him incorrectly.

The Information Minister has a history of public spats with businessmen, beginning with an ugly quarrel with Malaysia Airlines some years ago, attacks on no-frills airline AirAsia earlier this year and with Astro last week.

Abdul Kadir told the Berita Harian: "I did not say the Prime Minister had instructed Astro be investigated. He had asked me to advise the media, in general, against showing excessive violence and sex." He was quoted by Utusan Malaysia as saying that he had been "specifically instructed by the Prime Minister to investigate the satellite television channel for its recent rate hike and for allegedly airing programmes inconsistent with Malaysian culture".

Abdullah today said the Government would not interfere in the ongoing debate over Astro's subscription rate increase as it was an issue for the station's subscribers to decide.

"The Cabinet did not make any decision pertaining to the RM5 hike as Astro is a private company. If people feel that the increase is too steep, then Astro will lose out if they cancel (their subscriptions). Ultimately, it is the consumers' choice." "What the Cabinet is concerned about is the content," he added.

Abdullah, who is Internal Security Minister, also issued a blanket warning to all electronic and print media practitioners to strictly adhere to existing rules and regulations pertaining to violent, pornographic and sexually explicit content.

He said editors must be sensitive to the feelings of the public.

Abdullah cautioned that the Government would not hesitate to take action if media organisations went overboard.

No double standards, says Astro

From http://www.emedia.com.my/Current_News/MM/Sunday/National/20040523095312

ASTRO has refuted allegations that it is practising “double standards” in its implementation of the RM5 subscription fee hike which takes effect tomorrow.

In a statement to Sunday Mail yesterday, Astro’s chief operating officer David Butorac said: “There will be no change to the price structure for the packages ranging from RM104.95 to RM124.95.

“During 2003, Astro introduced new channels in the Emperor package comprising Celestial Movies and the two Shuang Xing channels. Customers who chose to take those channels or package were levied an increased charge at that time.

“As such, customers who are paying the higher prices currently and who took the additional package during 2003 have not been charged additional fees in the current price review. The decision is not based on any ethnic consideration.

“With the launch of the Measat 3 satellite next year, more channels and more exciting programmes and services will be added for all sectors of the Malaysian community.”

Butorac was responding to complaints from some of Astro’s customers who claimed that the company was practising double standards by subjecting some subscribers to the hike in fees while others were exempted.

A subscriber, Aftar Singh, had wanted to know why the fee increase was only imposed on some quarters if it was due to increasing operational costs and to enable Astro to provide better-quality programmes.

Another subscriber who called Astro’s toll-free-number last week, to enquire about the rationale for subjecting certain subscribers to the increase in subscription fees, was aghast when a worker told her the reason was because they made up the minority of the subscribers.

“Those who were not required to pay had signed up for packages which included vernacular ones, thus they would be paying more than RM100 as monthly subscription fees and that was why they are not required to pay the RM5. This is unfair,” she said.

Since Astro’s announcement of the RM5 hike, many of its 1.3 million subscribers have objected to the increase as some claimed the exercise was too soon as the last hike was about two years ago.

The complainants also felt that most of Astro’s content on all its channels consists of repeats.

On the other hand, there are many subscribers who are equally grateful to Astro for the repeats of certain movies or programmes, as not everybody can catch all the original screenings.


No update Sunday


No update Saturday


DrDish@TV Repeat

DrDish May program will be re-transmitted on RRSAT-GLOBAL-NETWORK ( http://rrsat.com/digital_platforms.htm ) on: Friday May 21, 2004, Saturday May 22, 2004 and Sunday May 23, 2004 every day at 12:00-15:00 GMT on following satellites:

To Asia, Africa and Australia via Thaicom-3 satellite at 78.5 deg. East.
Reception frequency: 3671 Mhz (C-Band) Polarization: Horizontal
Symbol Rate: 13.333 Msyb/s FEC: 3/4 Beam: Global

From my Emails & ICQ

From Vk4bkp

B1 feed 12389H
Colour bars B1 12389H sr 7200 3/4 comes up as BTQ-7-SNG 4 2.4m trailer up-link.

From the Dish

PAS 2 169E 4040 H "The Hope Channel and LifeTalk Radio Network" have left , moved to 4022 H.

Optus B3 152E 12658 V "Emarat FM" has left .

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3669 V "BlueKiss and BlueKiss Express"are encrypted again.


CASBAA fights TV piracy in HK

From http://www.advanced-television.com/pages/pagesb/newsdaily.html

The Cable & Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (CASBAA), is taking new steps to stamp out pay-TV piracy in Hong Kong, issuing 'cease and desist letters' to a number of bars and clubs in Hong Kong screening pay-TV services without legal pay-TV subscriptions.

Following a High Court ruling and support from the Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA) this new action aims to combat Pay-TV signal piracy across the SAR. If these venues fail to immediately discontinue screening pay-TV programming without obtaining legitimate subscriptions to licensed pay-TV services they are liable to further legal proceedings in the High Court of Hong Kong.

The cease and desist letters were issued in parallel with the launch of a 'pay-TV piracy awareness' campaign, under which CASBAA will issue letters to 300 bars and clubs in Hong Kong putting them on notice of what constitutes the legal and illegal screening of pay-TV services.

Under Hong Kong law bars and clubs may only display pay-TV channels, such as ESPN or STAR Sports, under an appropriate subscription from a Hong Kong licensed pay-TV operator such as Hong Kong Cable Television Limited (i-Cable). Other pay-TV operators such as UBC of Thailand, Multichoice of South Africa and Dream of the Philippines are not authorised to offer subscriptions in Hong Kong.

Simon Twiston Davies, the CEO of CASBAA said the pay-TV piracy awareness letters and cease and desist letters to the bars and clubs were part of a wider campaign to raise awareness of pay-TV piracy in Hong Kong and across the region. "Pay-TV signal piracy is a major issue for the broadcasting industry in Hong Kong. In October 2003, it was estimated that the gross cost associated with pay-TV signal piracy in Hong Kong amounted to approximately US$27 million (HK$210 million) over a 12-month period," said Twiston Davies, adding that if these vast sums are stolen from the value chain, investment will fall and programming standards will decline.

Hong Kong clubs under Casbaa piracy scrutiny

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may172.htm

Association of Asia (Casbaa), today took new steps to stamp out pay-TV piracy in Hong Kong, issuing "cease and desist letters" to a number of bars and clubs in Hong Kong screening pay-TV services without legal pay-TV subscriptions.

Following a High Court ruling and support from the Office of the Telecommunications Authority (OFTA) this new action aims to combat Pay-TV signal piracy across the SAR. If these venues fail to immediately discontinue screening pay-TV programming without obtaining

legitimate subscriptions to licensed pay-TV services they are liable to further legal proceedings in the High Court of Hong Kong.

The cease and desist letters were issued in parallel with the launch of a "pay-TV piracy awareness" campaign, under which Casbaa will issue letters to 300 bars and clubs in Hong Kong putting them on notice of what constitutes the legal and illegal screening of pay-TV services.

Under Hong Kong law bars and clubs may only display pay-TV channels, such as ESPN or Star Sports, under an appropriate subscription from a Hong Kong licensed pay-TV operator such as Hong Kong Cable Television

Limited (i-Cable). Other pay-TV operators such as UBC of Thailand, Multichoice of South Africa and Dream of the Philippines are not authorised to offer subscriptions in Hong Kong.

In Hong Kong, besides Hong Kong Cable Television (i-Cable), the licensed pay TV operators are PCCW (NOW), Yes TV and Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting (ExTV), all of whom are members of Casbaa.

Law firms Herbert Smith and Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer have been retained by Casbaa to advise on these matters.

Last year, Casbaa, together with various copyright owners, was involved in successful pay-TV signal piracy actions against suppliers of equipment that enabled the unlawful reception of pay TV programmes within Hong Kong (Satellite Television Asian Region Ltd & Others v Alpha Communications Technology Ltd & Others).

Pay-TV channels named in the 2003 court actions included CNN, Discovery Networks Asia, National Geographic Channels, Cartoon Network, ESPN Star Sports and STAR Group. CASBAA also represents the likes of MTV Asia, HBO Asia, BBC World, Walt Disney Television, Sony Pictures Television, TVB International, Nickelodeon, CNBC and Bloomberg Television.

Earlier this month John Tsang, Secretary for Commerce, Industry and Technology, gave a commitment that the regulator, OFTA, would be making weekly visits to "black spots" where unauthorised pay-TV decoders are on sale and that these visits would be followed up with appropriate action.

Simon Twiston Davies, the CEO of CASBAA, applauded Tsang's comments and said the pay-TV piracy awareness letters and cease and desist letters to the bars and clubs are part of a wider campaign to raise awareness of pay-TV piracy in Hong Kong and across the region.

(Craigs comment, Taiwan police are also on the hunt for an Australian installer who has been setting up such bar and club satellite systems)

HONG KONG: Yes TV says no more to competitive market

From http://www.asiamedia.ucla.edu/article.asp?parentid=11370

Two more pay-television licence holders are pulling the plug, highlighting the failure of government efforts to broaden competition in the non-terrestrial television market

Two more pay-television licence holders are pulling the plug, highlighting the failure of government efforts to broaden competition in the non-terrestrial television market.

Yes Television (Hong Kong), a subsidiary of Britain's Yes Television, said yesterday it would quit the territory's pay-television operations and surrender its licence to the Broadcasting Authority.

The move followed a decision by niche broadcaster TV Plus of Taiwan to end its pay-television business last month, a government spokeswoman said.

"We received Yes TV's proposal [to surrender its licence on Wednesday]," she said. "We also received a similar proposal from TV Plus last month. Both applications are pending approval from the office of the Chief Executive."

Yes TV had invested HK$40 million in its three-year-old service, and paid an annual licence fee of $1.37 million.

"The licence fee is too much and the heavy investment in decoders is another problem," said Lanny Huang, the president of Yes TV (Hong Kong). Each decoder costs about US$100.

Yes TV chairman and chief executive Thomas Kressner had earlier admitted the company entered the sector too early. He also said it was difficult to cut its monthly fee of HK$298 as it needed to pay $198 to PCCW for access charges.

The firm will end its service on May 31.

Existing customers, numbering in the thousands, have been transferred to its broadband operation Yes TV Plus, which offers subscribed content.

The departure of TV Plus and Yes TV will leave Hong Kong with just four pay-television operators - i-Cable Communications, Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting, NOW Broadband TV and City Telecom's Hong Kong Broadband Network.

"Hong Kong has limited room for a real pay-TV market as the audience is used to free-to-air broadcasting," said Joseph Tang, the head of Sun Hung Kai Research.

HK PRESS: Yes Television, TV Plus Quit HK Pay-TV Mkt

From http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/040521/15/3kg8k.html

HONG KONG (Dow Jones)--Small pay-television license holders in Hong Kong, Yes Television (Hong Kong) and TV Plus of Taiwan, have decided to pull the plug on their services, due to high costs and competition, the South China Morning Post and the Standard report.

Yes TV, a subsidiary of the U.K.'s Yes Television, said it would quit Hong Kong pay-television operations from May 31 and surrender its license to the Broadcasting Authority, the paper said. Citing Yes TV (Hong Kong) president, Lanny Huang, the SCMP said the license fee was too high, while the heavy investment needed in decoders posed another problem.

Yes TV had invested HK$40 million in its three-year-old service, and paid an annual license fee of HK$1.37 million.

Last month, niche broadcaster TV Plus of Taiwan also applied to exit the market. TV Plus and Yes TV's applications to withdraw are awaiting government approval, the South China Morning Post reports.

The departure of TV Plus and Yes TV will leave Hong Kong with four pay-television operators - dominant player i-Cable Communications Ltd. (ICAB); Television Broadcasts Ltd. (0511.HK) Galaxy Satellite Broadcasting, branded as extv; fixed-line giant PCCW Ltd.'s (PCW) NOW Broadband TV and City Telecom (Hong Kong) Ltd.'s (CTEL) Hong Kong Broadband Network

Satellite pay TV operator WOWOW sinks into red

From http://www.japantoday.com/e/?content=news&cat=4&id=299323

TOKYO — WOWOW Inc, one of the nation's two main satellite pay TV service firms, said Friday its group net balance fell into the red in the year to March 31. WOWOW said its operating revenues fell by 2.2% to 61.61 billion yen.

WOWOW said the number of subscribers dropped by a net 13,843 during the 12-month period to 2,484,681 as of March 31, with the number of those canceling subscriptions topping that of new subscribers. (Kyodo News)

Taiwan's second satellite successfully launched from US

From http://www.spacedaily.com/2004/040520222422.3oqhev83.html

Taiwan Thursday successfully launched a rocket carrying the island's second satellite, ROCSAT-2, from California's Vandenberg Air Force Base, officials said.

While the research satellite is officially intended for civilian use, Taiwanese officials said in November that ROCSAT-2 could also be used for military purposes.

The US-based Orbital Sciences Corporation and Taiwan's National Space Program Office successfully launched a Taurus XL rocket at 10:47amfrom the base north of Los Angeles, base officials said Thursday.

"The rocket carries the ROCSAT-2 remote sensing satellite," a statement from Vandenberg said.

"Its mission is to observe and monitor the terrestrial and marine environment and natural resources throughout Taiwan, its remote islands and surrounding ocean for civil applications."

The launch of the French-made satellite that can take high-resolution pictures had been scheduled for January 17 but was delayed.

"Data gathered by the ROCSAT-2 can be used on different fields ... including military," Chen Cheng-hsing, who oversees Taiwan's satellite programme,in November.

Military analysts said that without a fully-controlled spy satellite, Taiwan could hardly establish a functional anti-missile system while rival China increases the deployment of ballistic missiles targeting the island.

China has viewed Taiwan as part of its territory awaiting reunification with the mainland, by force if necessary, since nationalists fled mainland China for Taiwan following their 1949 defeat in the country's civil war.

But according to the NSPO, the satellite's primary objective is to monitor Taiwan's landmass and surrounding waters, as well as study atmospheric conditions.

The 750-kilogram (1,650-pound) satellite is made by Astrium of France and was assembled in Taiwan from where it was shipped to California.

The satellite, with a life span of five years, will be placed in a 890 kilometer (480 nautical mile) high orbit. The total cost for the project is 4.7 billion Taiwan dollars (1.18 billion US).

Taiwan in October 1991 launched a 15-year space program at an estimated cost of 19.6 billion dollars (576.47 million US).

Star India to launch new channel in June

From Indian news

Not satisfied with making life difficult for other general entertainment channels, Star India is unleashing another channel ‘Star Utsav’ in this genre in addition to its hugely successful Star Plus channel.

Going on air next month on the 7 th , the new channel is expected to be free-to air rerunning programmes including Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Baahu Thi and Saans shown on Star Plus earlier.

Targeted especially at smaller cities and towns, it opens a big platform for Star to tap local advertisers looking for a low cost proposition.

It is difficult to forecast the fate of the new channel but the reaction of the industry experts is a good barometer to make out its acceptance level in the market.

Given the Star pedigree and brand proposition, the majority views that it is an excellent move by Star.

Take this. “I expect Star Utsav to start with a definite edge in the market. The new channel is going to debut with a positive rub off with Star Plus enjoying a very high viewership and advertiser confidence in the market. The distribution of the channel is expected to be good thanks to the vast and penetrative distribution network of Star,” says CVL Srinivas, managing director of Group M’s Maxus India (earlier known as Maximize India).

Apurva Purohit, an ex media planner and currently the chief operating officer-entertainment channels of Times Television, and who herself is gearing up to launch Times channels soon explains, “Obviously Star is trying the moping up strategy in terms of advertising revenues by giving a low cost second line channel.

It expects that the offering is going to leverage the Star Plus equity and occupy more shelf space from the distribution point of view.”

Arpita Menon, media director of FCB Lodestar believes, “Star Utsav will be a boon to brands which want to get onto satellite but still want small town reach.” Even Ravi Kiran, managing director (India-West & South) of Starcom Worldwide agrees with Menon as he says, “It will broad base Star's viewership in small markets, which favour FTA channels and where channels like SAB TV and Sahara are currently popular. I expect advertisers targetting small towns lean more towards Utsav”.

A senior market research analyst says, “It’s a master stroke by Star. Using tried and tested shows involving no fresh production costs, any income is a bonus adding to the bottom line of the group! Through Utsav, Star also gets a foothold in the FTA market and this step will prove quite effective when CAS is implemented. In South, Sun TV has used this strategy quite successfully with KTV.”

Does it mean that Star Utsav will give paid channels like Zee and Sony a run for their money as advertisers who were interested in Star Plus but shied away due to high cost involvement now has a low cost platform in the form of Star Utsav? And secondly does the impact of the new channel will be felt more by FTA’s like Sahara Manoranjan and SAB TV as they are going to be in direct competition for eyeballs and ad pie?

Kiran answers, “If dozens of me-too products can co-exist in the consumer market, then why not in broadcasting? But if Star Utsav performs well in big cities in the first 12-16 weeks, Sony and Zee will be under pressure, but I dont think they have much slack to drop rates. However I do expect advertisers targetting small towns lean more toward Utsav.”

Srinivas sounds more optimistic as he says, “Talking of Zee and Sony and even Sahara and SAB, if Star Utsav offers a good price value equation to the advertisers then Star has a winner in its hand right from day one!”

But Purohit cautions that Star shouldn’t take Utsav’s success for granted as she says, “TV programming has extremely low shelf life. A programme starts looking dated within a month's time and on its third repeat.... nothing proves this fact more soundly than the reruns of KBC, which failed to generate favourable ratings on Star Plus itself.”


There is a competition running over at Vetrun's FTA forum, the prize being a Jaeger Dual Axis Az/El H-H Motor suitable for 1.2m up to 3m mesh dish's. Click on the message forums button on the left to visit the Forums.

Nss6 Bluekiss adult channels were reported fta last night

Americans launched AMC 11 to 131W this bird may have some signals in our direction once it starts testing.

Cricket tonight NZ vs England not likely to be FTA anywhere but you never know..

Jon's Asia Weekly

Issue 5

"Toys and Gadgets"

One thing about living here in Thailand you never get tired of the never ending stream of new audio video products, and heck at such a cheap price.

I guess you could call parts of Asia like Hong Kong, Singapore and Japan, the gadget capital’s of the world. Over the years I like many of you have got my PDA, my MP2 player, my digital camera, my video, my mobile phone, my notebook and all the other gadgets you seem to collect on the way. Including the neat satellite TV system we all love and use.

I do not know about you, but I now need about 10 bags to cart this stuff around with me so a few months ago after the PDA, stereo, TV, satellite system, MP3 players, notebooks and mobile phones took over the lounge the misses said, “enough is enough”, “clean this mess up, we live in a house, Jon” hmm here I thought we lived in a gadget play room.

So here I was, faced with another of those cross cultural crisis’s we have from time to time. Clean up the gadgets or get a new wife. Hmm, the new wife bit took some thought (no just kidding) but this did get me to thinking there has to be a better was to do all this. Move all the gadgets into one box and make it look nice at the same time, without disrupting my leisure time, when I listen to music or watch a bit if TV, or play games with the kids.

So off to the internet I went armed with what I wanted to do and much to my surprise there has been allot of wives talking to their men folk about the same problem. Mrs Gates it seems got Mr. Gates to develop a “Windows Media Center” just for this purpose, which would do most of what I wanted. So with that thought in mind and armed with the DELL phone number, I rang up DELL Malaysia only to discovery the do not know about their “Windows Media Center“ Server, so back to the drawing board after Microsoft here in Bangkok told me not to waste their time, we do not have a “Media Center” they told me.

I then went hunting and found a really neat bit of free software called myHTpc which would allow me to;

Play TV via a TV or Satellite Card or both
Play my MP3’s and all my other music including my CD collection (albeit this is now all on the hard disk)
Play my digital photos to unsuspecting visitors
Play all my VCD’s, DVD’s and even interface to my old Laser Disk player

Plug this kit into a half way decent sound system and bingo you have the best of all worlds in one little PC. I went back to Dell and brought a cheap desktop with a P4 2.4ghz system, with lots of RAM (1 GB), lots of hard disk space, a good sound card, DVD read/burner that included a VCD player and Windows XP installed on it. Now here for under a $1,000 I have all I wanted in a box, the missus is happy, the kids love the music as “Harry McClary” blares out over the soi’s of Bangkok and I love it all as I only use my PCI satellite card’s remote to run it all and still get to watch my sports. Being black in colour it does not even look like there is a PC there at all, it simply looks like and extension to the surround sound system.

So if you get ten minutes on a rainy afternoon go and check out http://www.myhtpc.net and shock the pants of your friends and family with this great little application. You may find like me you will soon be dropping the big speakers and other huge kit for a small but oh so customizable system like myHTpc.

C Band

Nice to see Thailand has launched the “World Peace TV” on Thaicom 2/3 , used to be that herbal life (or spamlife as they are nicknamed here) channel (the guys that did multi level marketing) a very good place to send some time and ponder.

Again we lost our GSN as it went encrypted, but thanks to Steve we got a nice bonus with Channel V, TVB8 and another on Chinastar.

KU Band:

More and more FTA channels this week popping up all over the place in Asia this week. It was great to see the SRI vrs ZIMM cricket the night off PAS 8 KU on the Asian beam. That was a real bonus, albeit I see that are back to movies now.


YIKES! I found that blind scanners can lie! I had one do it to me on Thaicom 2/3 KU the other night. I thought I had found a new 10/11 g/hz group of transponders only to turn out to be a wrong reading of the existing 12 g/hz transponders. Glad I double checked it, before posting it – pheeeww. Opps does mean I posted it?

A series of new AU STB’s hit the market this week, no more hype or vaporware, as I saw a Seca AU in action.

Looks like the wholesale world is looking more and more the STB manufacers in Shenzhen as they start to do more and more road shows around the world flogging their wares.


HOT: Infosats new 1.5 meter offset dishes for the ABC AP on the Asian KU bean

Where have all the 1m offsets in the world gone to? Seen many lately or are they all on the roof’s of Baghdad?

The winds have arrived in Bangkok, I have never seen so many ripped mesh dishes in my life.


Steve from the Aussie bar in Phuket (Southern Thailand – but no where even near to the troubles) told me to tell you it’s OK to come to Phuket lads!

The “Hare & Hound” on Washington Square (David from ex Soi Cowboy) now have all the Aussie sports playing, so if you are one of the QANTAS team staying at the “Queen Park” pop over and have a beer with all the lads.


DD Sport have been showing some good stuff if late.

ABC AP are still #1 here in Thailand

Eurosport News seems to have made a big resurgence closely following ABC AP across the kingdom.

Remember a few weeks ago I made mention of horse racing? Well stay tuned, we will have some very good news for those of you in Asia who want this. In the meantime feel free to email for more details.

The super 12 finals, more AFL, NRL and more this weekend.


If you have items you want posted or question – email Jon at joncl@yahoo.com

From my Emails & ICQ

From Telsat (NZ)

Wanted Competent C Band Installer North AKL

I am looking for a competent "C Band" installer to carry out an installation of a 3m
mesh antenna receiving a TV service from AsiaSat2 in Whangaparaoa.

More work could be available.

Please email me soonest.


From Bui Hoang Hai (Vietnam)

Dear Sir,

I am from Vietnam and using Xsat 410 to receive satellite TVs. However, my receiver can receive signals from only one satellite, that is Jsat2A. I could not find any channels from other satellites such as Agila, Assiat2 etc. Even when I use my receiver to scan with a dish that can give high level of signal from that satellite (Assiat2...) to another receiver.

Could you advise of any setting should I pay attention to in order to resolve this problem?

Thank you very much and look forward to hearing from you,

Bui Hoang Hai

(Craigs comment, I will assume you are talking about Cband and that your dish is tracking correctly. Make sure your LNBF is set to LO 5150 on EACH satellite and has not defaulted to a KU LNBF type such as 11300. Some receivers may have 2 satellites listed e.g Asiasat 2 Cband and Asiasat 2 KU. Be sure to pick the one for the Cband if you want Cband)

From Jon C

World Peace TV

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3600 H "WPT" has started on , FTA, PIDs 519/720
Thai ... for world peace ..

From the Dish

Optus B3 152E 12525 V "CTN" has left .

Apstar 1A 134E 4120 H "XinJiang Cable TV 1-3" are encrypted again.

AsiaSat 3S 105.5E 3669 V "BlueKiss and BlueKiss Express" were FTA (Encrypted NOW).

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 HA Winner promo has replaced the Satmedia promo on , Fta, VPID 6178.

Telstar 10 76.5E 3845 H "I-Cable and the test card" have left .

PAS 10 68.5E 4162 V "Occasional feeds" on , SR 3000, FEC 3/4.


Optus D1 Groundbreaking Contract


Date Released: Wednesday, May 19, 2004
Source: Arianespace

The Optus D1 launch contract signed last week marks the first time the Launch Services Alliance mission assurance option was incorporated into a contract at signing.

After competitive bidding from all launch services providers, Australian telecommunications carrier Optus chose an Ariane 5 as the primary vehicle with the Sea Launch Zenit-3SL as the backup.

"This contract proves what we have been saying all along," remarked Jim Maser, President and General Manager of Sea Launch. "Customers want flexibility and responsiveness, and the Launch Services Alliance uniquely meets that need."

"After the proven successful collaboration for the DIRECTV 7S launch, we are proud to have the opportunity to work with Sea Launch again," said Arianespace CEO Jean-Yves Le Gall.

The satellite will receive dual-integration efforts, so that if the backup arrangement is activated, the operator will still have the desired launch window at the end of 2005.

About the Launch ServicesAlliance

Created in July 2003, the Launch Services Alliance combines the strengths of the world's leading commercial launch providers Arianespace, Boeing Launch Services and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries to provide customers with flexible, reliable and on-time delivery to orbit.

About Sea Launch

Sea Launch Company, LLC, headquartered inLong Beach,Calif., and marketed through BLS (www.boeing.com/launch), offers the most direct and cost-effective route to geostationary orbit for dedicated commercial launches in the heavy-lift range. 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, go to: www.sea-launch.com.

About Arianespace

Arianespace is the commercial launch services leader, holding more than 50 percent of the international market for satellites launched to geostationary transfer orbit (GTO). Created in 1980 as the world's first commercial space transportation company, Arianespace has signed contracts for the launch of more than 250 satellite payloads. For further information, see the Arianespace Web site at www.arianespace.com.

KT signs deal to launch first military satellite

From http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Korea/FE20Dg03.html

SEOUL - KT Corp, South Korea's biggest telecommunications company, said on Wednesday that it has signed a contract with US commercial launch services provider Sea Launch to launch South Korea's first military-use satellite.

The contract was reached between KT chief financial officer Seo Jeong-soo and Sea Launch vice president Kjell Karlsen in Seoul, the South Korean company said in a statement.

The firms did not disclose the value of the deal because of a confidential agreement, KT spokesman Hwang Dae-woon said.

KT and the Agency for Defense Development, a government-funded military research institute, are building "Koreasat-5," which will be launched in June 2006.

The satellite, designed by French telecom equipment group Alcatel, will also be used for non-military purposes such as communications and broadcasting, KT said.

The new communications satellite "Koreasat-5" will be shared equally by private users and military authorities, KT said.


A new news channel starts tomorrow India TV via Pas 10 FTA.

There is some info about the new Star FTA channel in the news section. Hindi programming FTA that has previously shown on the Star Plus channel (Vision Asia B3). Speaking of the B3 Globecast mux Sigiram channel has been flashing on and off since yesterday.

3.7M orbitron for sale in NZ

From my Emails & ICQ

Nothing to report.

From the Dish

Superbird 6 at 158E Superbird 6 has arrived at 158 East.

Agila 2 146E 3717 H "TCT World" is back on , Fta, SR 2550, FEC 5/6, PIDs 4130/4131.
Agila 2 146E 4088 H "IBC 13" has started on , Digicipher 2/enc., VC 101.

ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" is now encrypted.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3545 V Occasional feeds on , PIDs 353/354.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3600 H "WPT" has started on , FTA, PIDs 519/720.(What is this?)
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H "Fashion TV" is back on , Fta, PIDs 3105/3106.

Insat 3C 74E

Occasional feeds on 3745 V and 3774 H, SR 3000, FEC 3/4.
Occasional feeds on 3760 V, SR 2500, FEC 3/4.
Occasional feeds on 3780 H, SR 3800, FEC 3/4.
Occasional feeds on 3781 V, SR 2000, FEC 3/4.
Occasional DD feeds on 3874 H, SR 2250, FEC 3/4.

DD Dehradun has started on 4130 V, clear, SR 5000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 512/650.
DD Panaji has started on 4143 V, clear, SR 5000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.
DD Gangtok has started on 4161 V, clear, SR 5000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.
DD Port Blair has started on 4180 V, clear, SR 5000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 308/256.

DD Chandana and the occasional DD Chandana feeds have left 3734 V,moved to Insat 2E.
DD Malayalam has left 3919 V, moved to Insat 2E.

(Craigs comment, those with big dishes may like to have a look as signals from this bird can be received in Australia.)


CanWest Plans To Float On NZ Market

From http://xtramsn.co.nz/news/0,,3882-3358348,00.html

Canadian broadcaster CanWest has announced plans to float its New Zealand television and radio operations on the sharemarket.

The Winnipeg, Manitoba-based firm will sell 68 million shares in CanWest MediaWorks, which will list on the New Zealand exchange.

Public investors will end up with about 30 percent of the new firm, with CanWest holding the remainder.

The offer is expected to raise up to $119 million in new capital.

CanWest runs six national radio brands in New Zealand - The Edge, Channel Z, The Rock, More FM, Radio Pacific and Solid Gold and 22 regional radio stations, as well as TV3 and C4.

The offer is expected to open on or about June 9 and close on or about June 29.

Code-busters hold key to secure future for pay-TV

From http://news.ft.com/

Rupert Murdoch this week summoned executives to New York for budget meetings at News Corp that could determine the media empire's investment strategy for the next financial year and beyond. But the com- pany's ambitions in subscription television may also be influenced by separate confidential meetings in the Czech Republic.

Earlier this week, 25 top managers checked into a Prague hotel to discuss the future of NDS, the News Corp affiliate that has become the world leader in "conditional access technology". Among them were former Israeli intelligence officers, CIA operatives, computer scientists, even commandos - all experts in the art of encryption and code-breaking.

NDS, founded in Israel 12 years ago, develops the smart-card technology used in 41m television set-top boxes around the world. About $20bn (£11.3bn) of pay-TV revenues rely on its systems, in an industry with relatively few competitors. Kudelski, the Swiss technology group, is its only large rival for satellite customers.

Both companies are expanding rapidly to meet demand from new subscribers and supply replacement systems for existing customers. The winner could dominate the global industry for satellite TV technology.

Abe Peled, NDS chief executive, says: "We are seeing major growth as old boxes are replaced and new platforms are introduced with interactive functions."

Mr Peled, a former IBM software director in Israel, says the order backlog depends on a simple business model: secure codes that defeat pirates.

That model rests on the birthplace of NDS technology, the Weizmann Institute of Science near Tel Aviv, and a legacy dating back to a French arms embargo against Israel in the 1950s.

"The embargo forced Israel to become self-reliant in technology and code-breaking," recalls Mr Peled. "One of our employees developed the code to jam Syrian radar in 1973; it had to be right first time."

The company was funded by News Corp after Adi Shamir, a mathematics professor at the Weizmann Institute, convinced Mr Murdoch in the late 1980s that encryption systems developed for financial transactions could be applied to pay-TV services.

News Corp insiders admit that NDS employs former Mossad agents and US intelligence officers among its executives, saying: "It's a spying game, what do you expect?"

That colourful past has come back to haunt NDS in recent years.

The company, in which News Corp has a 79 per cent stake, has been embroiled in legal disputes with rival technology companies and pay-TV groups such as EchoStar of the US and Spain's SogeCable.

The central allegation - first raised by Canal Plus Technologies of France - was that NDS employed hackers who broke their codes and posted them on the internet.

NDS, which has spent more than £4m fighting the claims, rejects the allegations.

Mr Peled admits the company obtained rivals' cards and "reverse engineered" them to reveal any latest innovation.

But he argues this is what happens in all industries - from carmaking to consumer electronics - and firmly denies leaking codes to pirate websites.

"We have hired people who used to be hackers," says Mr Peled. "You cannot penetrate these underground networks unless you employ people from that world. But we make sure they have gone clean."

So far, no legal action has been upheld against NDS, which was also subject to tax investigations in Israel in the mid-1990s. Most cases have been dismissed or dropped.

Canal Plus abandoned its suit after Vivendi Universal, its parent company, sold its sister business - Telepiù of Italy - to News Corp. An action by DirecTV was also dropped after the media group acquired a controlling stake in the company.

To Mr Peled and his managers gathered in Prague, all this is a sideshow. They argue that NDS's strong anti-piracy record reflects heavy research and development spending - £61.3m last year - and not under-hand business tactics.

NDS now believes it can finally crack the US market for cable television. Up to now, rivals Motorola and Scientific-Atlantic have dominated the world's largest market for cable set-top boxes - sold in about 80m households.

"NDS have been trying to break into cable for a couple of years," says one News Corp insider. "Eliminating piracy and all that code-breaking could be the key."

MALAYSIA PRESS:Govt To Study Astro's New Subscription Fee

From http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/040519/15/3kdru.html

KUALA LUMPUR (Dow Jones)--Malaysia's Information Minister Abdul Kadir Sheikh Fadzir said a study will be carried out into Astro's 5 ringgit ($1=MYR3.80) rise in monthly satellite television subscription fees, the Star reports.

"I feel something is not right about this matter. I do not know what is wrong, so I will study it first and then bring it to the Cabinet," Abdul Kadir was quoted as saying.

He didn't say when a report will be submitted to the Cabinet.

Astro is increasing its monthly fees by MYR5 starting May 24. The rise will be the first since January 2002.

Many subscribers have complained in the local newspapers about the increase.

Astro is owned by Astro All Asia Networks Plc (5076.KU).

(Craigs comment, thats great a Govt enquiry when a Pay TV Service puts up their prices. Perhaps they need the extra $ to upgrade to a newer C.A system)

Star India's FTA Hindi channel Utsav launching 7 June

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may153.htm

MUMBAI: Star Plus' "flanker" channel sibling is finally ready to make its bow and it's not named Classic. Come 7 June and the Hindi entertainment space will see the entry of Star Utsav (meaning celebration), a free-to-air channel made up of reruns of the popular shows that Star Plus has generated over the last four years.

The entire Hindi speaking cable & satellite universe is what Star India COO Sameer Nair expects to reach through Star Utsav, especially the smaller cities and towns where Star Plus is not widely available. We are going in to the market and seeding 5,000 receivers, says Nair, while adding that there are some major distribution/trade related activities being organised around the channel's launch. There will be a lot of advertising on cable channels as well as trade related magazines as an adjunct to this effort, Nair says.

From an advertising point of view, Utsav offers Star the opportunity to tap into the local advertising space that opened up after the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) in February allowed foreign broadcasters to garner ads from the local non-exporting advertiser. Nair says the rates on Utsav will be extremely competitive, and will offer the smaller players a "quality channel" to advertise on.

According to Star India marketing and channel communications head Ajay Vidyasagar, Utsav, when packaged with the network's Hindi movie channel Star Gold, "can combat the rest of the Hindi entertainment channels as far as advertising is concerned."

Clearly the plan is that while Star Plus retains its numero uno position in the ad stakes, Utsav will work from the flanks eating into the ad pies that the likes of No 2 channel Sony Entertainment and the No 3 Zee TV have carved out for themselves.


Elaborating on the programming strategy behind Star Utsav, Nair says the scheduling had been done in such a manner that Utsav will function as an alternative channel that complements Star Plus.

One issue that Nair's team had to keep in mind while working out programming scheduling was that the top three shows on Star Plus --- Kyunki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, Kahaani Ghar Ghar Ki and Kasauti Zindagi Kay --- be protected from any possibility of erosion in their viewership. And Utsav's FPC has been organised keeping that thought in mind. Which is why KSBKBT, which will be Utsav's driver programme in the launch phase, has been slotted at 7 pm Mondays through to Thursdays.

Another point that needs noting is that Star is spacing out its "big gun" programmes and will not be launching them all in a bunch. That is why in the FPC made available to indiantelevision.com there is no KGGK or KZK among the shows in the list.

And what of the show that started Star on the road to pre-eminence --- Kaun Banega Crorepati? That will most likely be Utsav's Diwali offering, says Nair.

Now that Star's FTA channel is ready to roll, the industry will be awaiting the next channel that is expected to come from India's lead broadcaster's brains trust in the coming months --- Plus II. Of course, there might well be a name change when it does finally launch.

India TV to go on air from tomorrow

From http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/2004/05/19/stories/2004051901490400.htm

AFTER a host of news channels bombarding the television screens, mediaperson, Mr Rajat Sharma has launched India TV a "channel with a difference".

The free-to-air channel is expected to go on air from May 20, 2004. "India TV, with the catch line `Badle Bharat Ki Tasveer', will be different from the existing news channels which I believe look alike and behave alike. Ours will be an interactive channel which will not look at sensationalising news but rather presenting it in the right perspective," said Mr Sharma.

Mr Sharma and his wife Ms Ritu Dhawan hold 74 per cent stake in the new venture while the rest is with other Indian promoters. The channel has been set up with an investment of Rs 70 crore and has four studios at its headquarters in Noida and two in New Delhi, with a team of 350 journalists.

Along with Mr Sharma, Mr Tarun Tejpal of Tehelka and BJP leader and animal rights activist Ms Maneka Gandhi are also part of the channel. Mr Tejpal will anchor a special bulletin `Aaj ka Tehelka' which aims at exposing corruption while Ms Gandhi will focus on environment and animal welfare issues.

Rajat Sharma's India TV to beam from 20 May

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may141.htm

NEW DELHI: The Rajat Sharma and Ritu Dhawan-promoted India TV would make a formal debut in a 24-hour news channel avatar on 20 May.

Announcing the launch of the channel at a press conference here today, Sharma said, "We aim to change the way broadcast news reporting is being conducted in the country. India TV will set new benchmarks by maintaining international standards of responsible and credible news reporting. We will stay away from graphic depictions of violence and sensationalism of news. We will uphold the viewer’s right to correct information and their right to truth and verity. India TV is not just a news channel, it is a movement."

Asked by indiantelevision.com whether India TV would continue to be a stand-alone channel or join a bouquet to increase its distribution muscle, Sharma said that some talks were held with few media organisations but nothing has been finalised.

"If we join some bouquet or some other organisation wants to get associated with us, then that organisation would have to believe in our mission that India TV is," he explained.

India TV, in which approximately Rs 700 million has been sunk in, would continue to be a digital free-to-air news channel. Some 1,500 decoder boxes, however, have been distributed in those parts of the country where Hindi is predominantly spoken and understood in areas like Bihar, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, and parts of Maharashtra and Rajasthan.

"We are focusing on the Hindi speaking belt at the moment, but would spread to South India at a later stage," Sharma said.

India TV has also lined up a media blitz encompassing outdoor, radio, TV and print. While the TV campaign on niche channels would start in June, the other three media would be used immediately.

The channel has been on air for the past four weeks with a three-hour Election Special covering the general elections.

Complementing and supporting the channel’s own resources will be people known for their expertise in various facets of television journalism. Also on board will be personalities such as investigative journalist Tarun Tejpal and environment activist Maneka Gandhi.

Speaking on the vision behind India TV, Dhawan was quoted in a press release saying, "We have worked very hard to make India TV a world-class channel with an international feel. Yet, we have ensured that the soul of the channel remains Indian and its programming addresses the issues and interests of the average Indian."

The programming on India TV will incorporate in-depth analysis and minute-to-minute coverage of relevant issues. Twenty-minute news bulletins will be supported by ten-minute analyses of key events, every half hour, added the release.

Some of the major attractions at India TV will include Aaj Ki Baat Rajat Sharma ke Saath, a daily programme blending news reporting and analysis between 9 and 10 pm. Another programme Jeene ki Raah is a daily special bulletin on environment and animal welfare which will be anchored by Maneka Gandhi and a daily bulletin called Aaj Ka Tehelka exposing corruption at all levels by Tejpal. Among the bouquet of programmes will also be Aap Ki Adalat, Sharma’s signature show.

Commenting on her decision to join India TV, Gandhi said, "I joined because I think it is a channel that will tell the truth, and place it in the proper perspective without trivialising it."

Added Tejpal, "I had resisted the allure of joining television till Rajat approached me to be a part of his team at India TV. Realising that the power of the visual medium can heighten the overall effect of an investigative story and leave a lasting impression on the audience, I agreed."

Also notable is the fact that for the first time in India, the network of reporters at India TV will use fibre optic links for video transmission. These fibre optic links will connect 110 stations to the broadcast centre to facilitate real time transmission of news. The newsgathering network will also use mobile satellite vans and suitcase dish antennas for sending video dispatches from remote locations. The free-to-air news channel will be beamed from the PAS 10 satellite.


Live satelite chat 9pm NZ and 8.30pm Syd time onwards in the chatroom.

Optus B1 Sky NZ all transponders except (12706V and 12733V) were off between 4 and 5 a.m this morning for maintenance. It did make me panic for a while. Its now running as per normal minus bird Poo and Cobwebs on the Uplink dish.

Eurosports News on Asiasat 2 was off for a few hours today.

Sigiram on B3 12524V was FTA this afternoon when I did my daily scan

From my Emails & ICQ

From Steve D

BBC World on Sky NZ

Picture definition and colour on BBC World now excellent. I can even
read the 'crawler' on the bottom of the screen. Well done, 'BBC
World'. Now, if only CNN and TCM could improve THEIR signal ... ?

Steve D

From the Dish

No Lyngsat received


Aust to track planes by satellite

From http://abc.net.au/science/news/scitech/SciTechRepublish_1110259.htm

Australia is set to become the first country in the world to introduce satellite technology for tracking aeroplanes.

Air traffic controllers currently rely on radar and pilot radio reports to keep flight paths clear.

But a successful trial of satellite technology in Bundaberg in south-east Queensland means that system could be replaced by the end of next year.

Bernie Smith from Airservices Australia says 20 ground stations will be built across the country so traffic controllers will know exactly where aircraft are.

"It will give us much better separation standards, so we'll be able to fit more aeroplanes into the same airspace," Mr Smith said.

"That will allow pilots to select altitudes more readily that give more passenger comfort, if there's a certain chop or turbulence, where we might not be able to fit them in now."

The test has seen flying doctors send signals to traffic controllers in Brisbane by satellite for the past four months.

Mr Smith hopes all aircraft will soon be equipped with the same technology.

"We expect to have the whole country covered by the end of next year above 30,000 feet so that we'll be able to see every plane in the country above that level at that time," he said.

"And I'm hopeful that we'll have that technology approved by the Australian Safety Authority also at that time."

Remote homes get net access

From http://news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,9586655%255E15318,00.html

ABOUT 1400 Australian households in remote parts of the country have taken up a government offer of a 50 per cent rebate on the installation of a satellite dish for broadband internet access.

Figures released in Federal Parliament show 1401 households in remote areas applied through Telstra for the Special Digital Data Service rebate during the 2002-3 financial year, while 16 applied through new SDDS provider Hotkey.

The SDDS rebate — worth up to $765 — covers half of the cost of the purchase and installation of satellite equipment by the 4 per cent of the population without access to ISDN. The service provides a download speed of about 64Kbps.

The federal Government has confirmed that no applications for the SDDS were rejected for the industry-funded scheme.

Telstra was paid $144,309 in 2002-03 for providing the service, while Melbourne-based ISP Hotkey received $4368.

"If a customer's premises is in the general digital data service obligation area, the customer would be eligible to be provided with an IDSN service if requested," said Senator Rod Kemp, representing Communications Minister Daryl Williams.

"If the premises is not in the general digital data service obligation area, the customer is eligible for the (SDDS) service, and thus a rebate."

Centres look to TV station access

From http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/s1110378.htm

The regional centres of Albany and Bunbury in Western Australia's south look likely to have permanent access to the community television station Access 31.

The Perth-based station has been broadcasting to the two Western Australian cities on a trial basis for almost two years, but the service will now be available indefinitely, as the station has recently been granted a permanent broadcasting licence.

The only possible hitch is a review of the WA Government's Westlink Satellite service, which is due to begin within a month.

At present, most of the station's programs are made in Perth, but Access 31 chief executive Andrew Brine says he would like to see more regional content.

"What we're really hoping for is for groups to actually produce some of their own programming and then 31 has the time available on it's service to not only put it out in Albany and Bunbury but also to put it out in Perth as well," he said.

TV3's claims rejected by TVNZ

From http://home.nzcity.co.nz/news/default.asp?id=39565

Decision to bid against TV3 for ABC News and 20/20 supports commitment to best of news and current affairs says TVNZ

TVNZ is justifying its decision to bid against TV3 for ABC News and 20/20.

Rival channel TV3 has hit out at the state broadcaster for allegedly bidding $1.3 million for the American news and current affairs programmes, which is more than twice what TV3 pays.

TVNZ will not discuss figures, but admits it is in talks with Disney, which owns ABC, for a new supply agreement.

Head of content Stephen Smith says the deal is not for a single programme but a vast array of content available from the ABC network.

He says the only reason TVNZ would look at such a deal is to support its commitment to be the best in news and current affairs.

Mr Smith says there is no direct charter funding to news programmes.

Political parties are also criticising TVNZ's bid.

New Zealand First leader Winston Peters argues TVNZ already has several news and current affairs shows and the network should try to out-rate TV3 by providing better programming.

But he claims that instead, it is trying to use the muscle of taxpayer funding to outbid the competition.

(Craigs comment, Something is up could it be TVNZ stocking up on new content for the rumoured new TVNZ channel?)

Taiwan Satellite scheduled for launch on Friday

From http://th.gio.gov.tw/show.cfm?news_id=20857

ROCSAT-2, which is to be the nation's second satellite, is scheduled to be launched on May 21, Taiwan time, the National Science Council said on Sunday. Preparations for the launch are complete, it said.

Council Deputy Minister Shieh Ching-jyh, who spoke with the Taipei Times on Sunday from California, said the liftoff would be on the morning on May 20, California time, at which point it will be 1:47 a.m. on May 21 in Taiwan.

Shieh said a team of experts from the National Space Program Office (NSPO) believes that preparations at the launch site, Vandenberg Air Force Base, are perfect.

"So far, so good. But the most crucial part of ensuring normal operation of the satellite will be the launch itself," Shieh said.

The 750 kg satellite will be propelled into space by a Taurus rocket, a four-stage, ground-launched vehicle, at a launch site operated by Orbital Sciences.

After the launch, the NSPO team will spend three days observing the satellite in its temporary orbit 723 km above the Earth, and another 11 days gradually boosting it into its mission orbit, which is to be 891 km above the earth's surface. ROCSAT-2 is designed to orbit the earth 14 times a day and make two passes a day over Taiwan.

According to Shieh, after the launch, the NSPO team will remain on high alert because the satellite's functions depend heavily on progress in the first three months.

"Users can receive useful information from the satellite only if its operation during early orbits is perfect," Shieh said.

The launch date has nothing to do with the presidential inauguration scheduled for May 20, Shieh said, adding that the date was arrived at based on scientific considerations.

Despite a series of delays since the satellite was shipped to California last December, the launch should be a success, officials said.

Cheng Kuo-ping, manager of the NSPO's Program Control Department, told the Taipei Times on Sunday that both the satellite and its Taurus rocket launch vehicle were already at the launch site and had been thoroughly checked.

A three-day final rehearsal will begin on May 18, when the satellite and its launcher are moved to the launching pad, Cheng said. During the last six hours before the launch, weather conditions will be examined two or three times to ensure a smooth launch.

"But a final decision on whether to proceed with or abort the launch will be made based on all available information just five minutes before the launch," Cheng said.

According to the NSPO, ROCSAT-2's progress will be tracked beginning 18 minutes after the launch from McMurdo Station, a commercial satellite communication service at the South Pole. Sixty-three minutes after the launch, the satellite will be picked up by the Swedish Space Corp.'s ground station in Kiruna, Sweden.

After its fourth circle around the globe, a station in Chungli, Taiwan, will start receiving information from it. All information will be transferred back to the NSPO headquarters in Hsinchu.

Samsung to unveil satellite TV for phones

From http://asia.cnet.com/newstech/personaltech/0,39001147,39179775,00.htm

SEOUL, South Korea--Coming to cell phones soon: reality shows and cartoons.

Samsung plans to release a phone that can receive satellite TV signals and launch a service package that lets customers receive up to 40 stations. The company expects to launch both the service and the handset, called the Digital Multimedia Broadcasting (DMB) phone, in the third quarter.

The phone and service at first will be available only in South Korea, but the company often brings phones to other markets after assessing domestic sales, Ike Chung, vice president of mobile sales and marketing for Samsung, said in an interview here.

Chung also said that another product--a phone with a built-in BlackBerry device--will come out in the fourth quarter.

A number of phone manufacturers already sell handsets that can receive and send personal video and TV broadcasts over the cellular network. South Korean carriers, for example, have been able to deliver full programs across cellular networks since 2002. With that method, however, cost is a major problem.

"Watching a 90-minute soccer game costs about US$260," said Sauk-Hun Song, principal analyst at research company Gartner.

Carriers offering DMB service will likely charge a more affordable flat rate for it, he said, adding that SK Telecom, a local carrier, is expected to launch a DMB satellite soon.

Samsung came out with a phone last year that can receive TV signals from terrestrial stations, but that means of transmission limits the range and scope of programming.

Song, nonetheless, indicated that the market for TV phones may remain small for a while because of potential problems with overall quality and screen size.

TV phones are part of an overall effort on Samsung's part to capture more of the high end of the market.

The company's shipments, in terms of overall units sold worldwide, are growing at around 30 percent annually. Samsung estimates that it will ship 80 million to 85 million phones in 2004, up from 55.7 million in 2003, Chung said. Samsung shipped 20.1 million phones in the first quarter of this year, up from 15.5 million during the same period last year. Camera phones accounted for about 19 percent of the company's shipments in 2003.

Chung noted that sales of high-end phones have begun to accelerate in the often tough U.S. market.

"Even in the U.S. and Canada, people prefer compact-size phones," he said. "The change is happening. It started at the end of last year. The change is quite drastic."

In earlier years, he said, the joke for many Asian manufacturers was that a typical U.S. phones was "like a brick...You could use it as a weapon."

The company is concentrating on three types of high-end phones: multimedia phones that can serve almost as entertainment centers, phones that can double as PDAs (personal digital assistants), and "PDA lite" phones that contain the key ingredients of PDAs, like calendars, but without the same girth.

The laundry list of features that a multimedia phone might contain remains difficult to assess. One idea Chung tossed out involves putting enough storage on a phone so that it can serve as a home stereo unit. People could simply pop the phone into a cradle and their digital music vault could be played through speakers in the home.

Phones could also become terminals for buying entertainment. "Video on demand, audio on demand will be the killer (apps) for the phone," he said.

Additionally, Wi-Fi will likely be a popular addition for transmitting data because the cost of getting large files will be lower than through cellular networks, he said.

Sources close to the company also stated that Samsung will release a game phone with 1.2GB of storage and a battery with a long run time. Chung wouldn't confirm that but said the "use of memory is increasing dramatically."

Zee MGM to reinvent itself with more contemporary fare

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may120.htm

MUMBAI: Star Movies and HBO could finally see some serious competition from the lion. Zee MGM is in the midst of a revamp in order to appeal to a younger audience.

The channel will switch from old films to new films which have been released after 1998. Earlier the channel appealed to people who liked older films like westerns. Zee MGM's business head Abhijit Saxena said that with the new line up he was confident that the channel would be taken more seriously by the competition.

As was the case with Zee English, Zee MGM too will see its action quotient. Speaking on this Zee MGM's programming head Lena Joshi said that the channel would be young, fast paced and with a lot of known stars. Therefore the channel will focus a lot less on the older titles that it is known for.

Each month it will release around seven titles out of which one would be major. This film would air in the middle of the month from June. It will air Waking Up In Reno with Patrick Swayze and Oscar winner Charlize Theron. Earlier it used to air at the end of the month. One of the major titles that Zee MGM has is Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill Volumes one and two. The first volume will air sometime in August. Then there's The Hours on 30 May, which gave Nicole Kidman an Oscar. Kidman plays author Virginia Woolf who battles depression while writing Mrs Dalloway. That book will later on affect the life of a housewife played by Julianne Moore. Meryl Streep is in the third segment, which is a modern day version of Mrs Dalloway. Suicide, thoughts of death, repressed sexuality all make for portent cinema.

Joshi said that the channels fare looking ahead would be a mixed bag of Oscar winners and action films with known stars. Another movie lined up is Frida with Oscar nominee Salma Hayek. There is a lot of buzz around these titles. "As far as MGM is concerned the channel will be acquiring a lot of Bond titles. The MGM titles would be divided in to classic and new releases. The ratio of MGM films to the other studios will be 30:70. We are in the process of acquiring a lot of titles from Sony Pictures Entertainment.

"We are working out a big deal with them. However the films won't be premieres as most of them have an output deal with HBO. Miramax and Paramount are the other studios that we have deals with."

The acquisition cost for Zee MGM will go up by 80-90 per cent by the end of the year. The channel is also going in for a new look, which will happen over three to four months. There will be more festivals. Family Festival is happening this month and next month there's the Mobster festival with movies like Gangs of New York.

Then you will films around a genre like war or films dealing with America or films with the same star. "We will have a slot for the older titles like Old is Gold. We will show classics. For a western festival you will have The Good The Bad And the Ugly. Films like this will never go out of fashion." Saxena added that there were around 50 advertisers for both the channels.

As far as dubbing is concerned the channel is looking into the possibility of dubbing some of the action titles. As far as the uncensored titles in the night were concerned Joshi said that the activity had stopped after the broadcaster received a letter from the I&B Ministry. She conceeded that each day requests would be coming in on email. English channels see growth post 10:30 pm as earlier people watch soaps.

Joshi added that the reason for the lull in promotional activity on Zee English and Zee MGM was due to the internal managerial shifts that had been taking place. Now though there will be more activity. Zee MGM will take the theatrical route to showcase its wares. In fact Zee TV's ad for The Big Break can already be seen. The multiplexes like Fun Republic will be used extensively.

Online, the channel is looking to get more interactive with contests. Previously these were done with contests2win.com and Indiatimes.com. For SMS based contests there is the network number.


TV4 from Myanmar started on Thaicom 3 Sunday, anyone taken a look?

New service listed on Sky NZ transponder 12671V named "Autotv" encrypted of course but audio fta on Sid 205 Apid 664 (may appear on Sky channel 205?) website is www.autotv.co.nz looks like it's simply replacing Property TV.

B3 Globecast, CTN still off air, Test Channel is showing Al-Manar.

From my Emails & ICQ

Reported at Vetruns FTA Forum

B1 12367 V Sr 6620 "Super 12 semi-final Feed"

From JonC (Thailand)

Cricket SRI vers ZIMM now on (SRI thrashing ZIMM by over 350 runs)
12405 H Sr 2207 3/4
(Asian beam)

From Ranime

B1 12358 V Sr 6620 Fec 3/4 "NRL feed"

From Steve S

Moto G.P. Feed
seen 1900 EST. on Palapa C2, 3765 H, S/R 5692, FEC 3/4
EPG says Asia Link 021 54551, Subject, current.

Rgs. Steve. S.

(Craigs comment, Boxing also seen here)

From Satellite Info

Royal wedding seen
Asiasat 2
4085 v 5632 Vpid 308 Apid 256

From the Dish

Intelsat 701 180E 11514 V "Canal + Polynesie" has started on , Viaccess, PIDs 760/784.

PAS 2 169E 12604 V Occasional feeds on , SR 5425, FEC 1/2.(N.E Asia beam)
PAS 2 169E 12615 V Occasional feeds on , SR 6111, FEC 3/4.(N.E Asia beam)
PAS 2 169E Occasional ERA feeds on 12293 H and 12298 H, SR 3000, FEC 7/8.

Apstar 1A 134E 4160 H All channels in the CCTV mux are Fta.

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3700 V "Zee South East Asia" has started on , enc., PIDs 164/96.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3732 V Occasional feeds on , SR 4420, FEC 3/4. (Might be worth checking, not many look at Asiasat3 for Feeds)
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3780 V "A Star TV Utsav promo" has started on , Fta, PIDs 519/668.(To be Star classic fta channel?)
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3880 H "Emarat FM and Program One" have started on , Fta, APIDs 1412 and 1812. New APID for Radio Oman: 1712.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3920 H "ESPN China" has started on , Videoguard, PIDs 514/648.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3960 H "CNN Radio" is still Fta.

ST 1 88E 3550 V "TVB 8, MATV and Channel V Chinese" have started on ,Fta SR 7500, FEC 3/4, PIDs 49/33, 1057/1058 and 2097/2081.

(Craigs comment, some confusion over this one Steve Hume reckons its Chinastar1 at 87.5E and thats what he reported it as to Lyngsat....)

ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3858 V Occasional feeds on , SR 5632, FEC 3/4.
ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3921 H Occasional feeds on , SR 3618, FEC 3/4.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3600 H "A WPT info card" has started on , Fta, PIDs 519/720.
Thaicom 3 78.5E 3671 H "Fashion TV" has left .
Thaicom 2 78.5E 4145 H "ITV (Thailand) has replaced TVK and Radio Cambodia" on , Fta SR 4815, FEC 3/4, PIDs 160/80.

Telstar 10 76.5E 3652 H "TV Lanka" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1360/1320.Radio Lanka is now Fta, new APID: 1720.

Weekly SatcoDX News 07 May 2004 - 14 May 2004

INSAT 3C (74.0E)
Feeds (LUCKNOW DSNG) on 3.745 (V,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
DD News on 3.756 (H,14063,512,650,8190): It has replaced DD Metro
VTI DELHI on 3.760 (V,2500,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (Default Service) on 3.774 (H,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DSNG BHOPAL) on 3.780 (H,3800,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (Default Service ) on 3.781 (V,2000,308,256,8190)
Feeds (DD) on 3.874 (H,2250,308,650,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DD) on 3.896 (H,2250,308,650,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DD Dehradun) on 4.130 (V,5000,512,650,128): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DDK PANAJI(GOA) on 4.143 (V,5000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feed (DDK GANGTOK) on 4.161 (V,5000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DDK PORTBLAIR) on 4.180 (V,5000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started

Xizang TV1 on 12.374 (V,5660,160,80,160)
Xizang TV2 on 12.374 (V,5660,161,84,161)
Azio TV on 12.409 (H,6600,900,901,900): It has replaced Era News
K-II on 12.615 (V,22425,2064,2065,2064): It has started
Fashion on 12.615 (V,22425,2080,2081,2080): It has started
Rainbow on 12.615 (V,22425,2096,2097,2096): It has started
Playboy on 12.615 (V,22425,2112,2113,2112): It has started
Happy on 12.615 (V,22425,2128,2129,2128): It has started
Hi-play on 12.615 (V,22425,2144,2145,2144): It has started
HOT on 12.615 (V,22425,2160,2161,2160): It has started
Download Stream-8 on 12.615 (V,22425,49): It has started
Elementary Download Stream-8 on 12.615 (V,22425,49): It has started
Promo-Channel on 12.615 (V,22425,2176,2177,2176): It has started
CSN on 12.736 (V,21500,151,152,151)
Hwazan on 12.736 (V,21500,910,911,910)
Z Channel on 12.706 (V,21600,1060,1061,1060): It has started
Gala TV Variety on 12.706 (V,21600,1070,1071,1070): It has started
Gala TV Comprehensive on 12.706 (V,21600,1080,1081,1080): It has started
Gala TV Drama on 12.706 (V,21600,1090,1091,1090): It has started
Set Taiwan on 12.706 (V,21600,1100,1101,1100): It has started
Set Metro on 12.706 (V,21600,1110,1111,1110): It has started
Set News on 12.706 (V,21600,1120,1121,1120): It has started
Test on 3.920 (H,28340,1160,1120,1160)

THAICOM 2,3 (78.5E)
Dosti TV promo on 3.671 (H,13333,1057,1058,1057): It has started
Feeds (R R FEED) on 3.671 (H,13333,1057,1058,1057): RR Feeds New Package with New Parameters
BVN on 3.671 (H,13333,5158,5159,5158)
Radio Netherlands on 3.671 (H,13333,5155,5158)
Radio Netherlands on 3.671 (H,13333,5156,5158)
Radio Netherlands on 3.671 (H,13333,5157,5158)
Feeds (Satmedia.tv) on 3.671 (H,13333,6177,6209)
Feeds (RR2-TR) on 3.671 (H,13333,6193,6209)
Feeds (VIC-TV TR2) on 3.671 (H,13333,6210,6209)
Feeds (VIC-TV TR1) on 3.671 (H,13333,6225,6209)
Feeds (RVi 2 (VRT)) on 3.671 (H,13333,33,34)
Feeds (Overcomer Radio) on 3.671 (H,13333,7202,7201)
Fashion TV on 3.671 (H,13333,3105,3106,3105): It Has Restarted with New Pids
WPTV Card on 3.600 (H,26667,519,720,8190): It Has Started
Feeds (Satmedia.tv) on 3.671 (H,13333,6177,6193): New PCR
Feeds (RR2-TR) on 3.671 (H,13333,6193,6193): New PCR
Feeds (VIC-TV TR2) on 3.671 (H,13333,6209,6193): New PCR
Feeds (VIC-TV TR1) on 3.671 (H,13333,6225,6193): New PCR

INSAT 2E, 3B (83.0E)
AIR Chennai FM on 3.931 (V,8601,651,128): It Has Started
Sky Bangla on 3.430 (V,6000,4194,4197,4194): New PIDS and TN

CCTV 9 on 3.848 (V,5632,308,256,8190): It has replaced feeds
Greatsports Channel on 3.848 (V,5632,308,256,8190): It has replaced feeds
AOL on 3.892 (V,5000,8191): It has replaced feeds

ST 1 (88.0E)
CTS on 3.632 (V,26666,2097,2081,2097)
FTV News on 3.632 (V,26666,2609,2593,2609)
Formosa TV on 3.632 (V,26666,3121,3105,3121)
BBC World on 3.632 (V,26666,3633,3617,3633)
CTV - China TV on 3.632 (V,26666,4145,4129,4145)
Da Ai TV on 3.632 (V,26666,4657,4641,4657)
Public TV Service on 3.632 (V,26666,6193,6177,6193)
TTV on 3.632 (V,26666,7217,7201,7217)

MEASAT 1 (91.5E)
Test Card on 11.044 (V,30000,173,132,173)
HTV on 4.168 (H,3262,33,36,33): It has started

INSAT 3A (93.5E)
Euro Sports on 11.630 (H,27500,162,88,162): Euro Sports Has Started and Replaced CCTV9
Trace Tv on 11.630 (H,27500,159,114,159): Trace Tv Has Started and Replaced Geo Pak Tv
Feeds (*9MHz, PAL, 2 Audio ) on 3.810 (V,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DD MUM DSNG 05) on 3.816 (V,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (MCC Service) on 3.822 (V,3800,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (*9MHz, PAL, 1 Audio ) on 3.828 (V,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (BJP.LUCKN) on 3.828 (V,3000,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (Scopus-Net-Tech) on 3.840 (V,2500,4194,4195,4194): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds ()) on 3.922 (V,3031,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feed Has Started
Feeds (DDSHG1) on 4.092 (V,6250,257,258,257): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DDSHG2) on 4.092 (V,6250,513,514,513): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DD-1) on 4.101 (V,6250,257,258,257): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DD-2) on 4.101 (V,6250,513,514,513): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DD-3) on 4.101 (V,6250,769,770,769): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started
Feeds (DDK_AGARTALA) on 4.110 (V,6250,308,256,8190): Indian Election Result Feeds has Started

ASIASAT 2 (100.5E)
Xinhua Test on 12.268 (V,4000,300,301,300): It has started
Xinhua TV on 12.371 (V,5400,1110,1211,1110): It has replaced feeds
Saudi Channel 1 on 3.660 (V,27500,512,650,8190): New NID
Al-Alam News Channel on 3.660 (V,27500,513,651,8190): New NID
Kuwait Space Channel on 3.660 (V,27500,2560,2561,2560): New NID
IRIB3 on 3.660 (V,27500,2695,2690,2695): New NID
Al Quran Al Karim on 3.660 (V,27500,660,8190): New NID
Voice of Saudi Arabia Kingdom on 3.660 (V,27500,670,8190): New NID
IRIB Radio 1 on 3.660 (V,27500,2693,2689): New NID
IRIB Payam on 3.660 (V,27500,2694,2688): New NID
Data Service on 3.660 (V,27500): New NID

ASIASAT 3S (105.5E)
TVB XingHe on 4.110 (H,13670,1210,1220,1210): It's clear now
New Knowlegde Channel on 4.110 (H,13670,1410,1420,1410): It has replaced Test Card
TVB XingHe on 4.110 (H,13650,1210,1220,1210): It's encrypted now
TVB XingHe on 4.110 (H,13650,1210,1220,1210): It's encrypted now
STAR UTSAV on 3.780 (V,28100,519,668,8190): It's clear now
769 STAR UTSAV on 3.780 (V,28100,519,668,8190): It's clear now

WORLDSAT-1 (108.2E)
Human on 12.411 (V,11110,4245,4246,4245): It's clear now
CMC TV on 12.411 (V,11110,4370,4371,4369): It's clear now

PALAPA C2 (113.0E)
Sun TV on 11.132 (V,26667,52,53,52): It has replaced PTS
no name on 3.977 (H,2539)

APSTAR 1A (134.0E)
XinJiang Cable TV1 on 4.120 (H,27500,163,92,163): It's clear now
XinJiang Cable TV2 on 4.120 (H,27500,164,96,164): It's clear now
XinJiang Cable TV3 on 4.120 (H,27500,165,100,165): It's clear now
CCTV 3 on 4.160 (H,27500,512,650,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 5 on 4.160 (H,27500,513,660,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 6 on 4.160 (H,27500,514,670,8190): It's clear now
CCTV 8 on 4.160 (H,27500,515,680,8190): It's clear now
CCTV Kids on 4.160 (H,27500,516,690,8190): It's clear now
CCTV News on 4.160 (H,27500,517,700,8190): It's clear now

OPTUS B3 (152.0E)
Radio Akashwani on 12.407 (V,30000,272): It has started
Foxtel Feeds on 12.438 (H,21600): It has started
CTN on 12.525 (V,30000,2060,2020,2060): It has started
The Church on 12.525 (V,30000,2141,2142,2141): It has started
Oman TV on 12.525 (V,30000,2260,2220,2260): It has started
Abu Dhabi TV on 12.525 (V,30000,2460,2420,2460): It has started
The God on 12.525 (V,30000,2560,2520,2560): It has started
ATCB on 12.525 (V,30000,1122,1160): It has started
3ABN Radio on 12.525 (V,30000,2121,2160): It has started
Emirat FM on 12.525 (V,30000,2421,2460): It has started
Oman Radio on 12.525 (V,30000,2422,2460): It has started
Sydney races on 12.564 (H,30000,1160,1120,1160): It has started
Kossuth AM on 12.658 (V,30000,552,502): It has started
RNW 3 on 12.658 (V,30000,553,503): It has started
RNW 1 on 12.658 (V,30000,1023,1061): It has started
RNW 2 on 12.658 (V,30000,1026,1460): It has started
ASB Radio on 12.658 (V,30000,1122,1160): It has started
Voice of Turkey on 12.658 (V,30000,1222,1160): It has started
Vietnamese Radio on 12.658 (V,30000,1223,1160): It has started
Tamil Radio on 12.658 (V,30000,1322,1360): It has started
RVI 2 on 12.658 (V,30000,1323,1360): It has started
Star Tracks on 12.658 (V,30000,1622): It has started
Raw FM on 12.658 (V,30000,1722,1760): It has started
TRT FM on 12.658 (V,30000,1822,1860): It has started
Emirates FM on 12.658 (V,30000,1826,1861): It has started
Glas Hrvatske on 12.658 (V,30000,1922,1960): It has started
TRT International on 12.501 (H,30000,257,258,257): It has started
Thai TV Global Network on 12.501 (H,30000,512,690,512): It has started
3ABN on 12.501 (H,30000,2049,2020,2049): It has started
Test Card on 12.501 (H,30000,5153,5154,5153): It has started
BVN on 12.501 (H,30000,5158,5159,5158): It has started
Bangkok Radio 94 FM on 12.501 (H,30000,651): It has started
TRT FM on 12.501 (H,30000,4353): It has started
Voice of turkey on 12.501 (H,30000,4609): It has started
3ABN Radio on 12.501 (H,30000,5121): It has started
RNW 1 on 12.501 (H,30000,5156): It has started
RNW 2 on 12.501 (H,30000,5157): It has started

PANAMSAT 8 (166.0E)
TVBS Newsnet on 3.836 (V,22000,161,84,161): It's encrypted now
TVBS Newsnet on 3.836 (V,22000,161,84,161): It's clear now
Soundtrack Channel Pacific on 3.860 (H,28000,420,421,420): It's encrypted now
Feeds on 3.860 (H,28000,430,431,430)
Channel_04 on 3.860 (H,28000,440,441,440)
ABS-CBN 2 (cable) on 3.880 (V,28700,1260,1220,1260): It's clear now
ABS-CBN 3 (cable) on 3.880 (V,28700,1360,1320,1360): It's clear now
Disney Test Channel on 4.140 (H,28125,1560,1520,1560): It has started
FTV Rntertainment on 12.317 (V,12500,512,650,8190): SID/TID/NID added
FTV News Channel on 12.317 (V,12500,513,651,8190): SID/TID/NID added

PANAMSAT 2 (169.0E)
FUJI TV on 12.327 (V,6620,1160,1120,1160)
JAXA/NASDA on 12.604 (V,5429,3160,3120,3160)


Digi-TV review under radar

From http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/05/14/1084289886935.html

Email to a friend Printer format Last Monday, the Minister for Communications, Daryl Williams, announced a series of reviews of broadcasting policy which have the potential to transform the media landscape. Apart from the prospect of a fourth commercial television network, however, there has been minimal discussion of their implications.

That may have something to do with the timing. Budget-eve announcements tend to be overwhelmed by the fixation with the nation's finances. Given the controversy which usually surrounds anything to do with media policy, perhaps the timing was deliberate.

It is also possible the lack of interest in the reviews relates to the many unsuccessful attempts to reform media policy in the past, and cynicism that the latest reviews will produce a different outcome, particularly given they have been commissioned by a minister who will retire before they are completed.

This time, however, does promise to be different because the digital TV regime, under which the Government maintained the free-to-air networks' oligopoly and stopped the real development of digital TV in its tracks, had some key decision points embedded in it which have to be revisited within the next year.

One is the possibility of a fourth commercial network. The moratorium on new licences expires at the end of 2006.

Another is the switching off of the analog signal, which will free up massive amounts of spectrum, as early as 2007. That decision, and a review of the spectrum-hungry high-definition digital TV requirements, will open up the potential not just for a new network but for multi-channelling by the existing networks, and perhaps a datacasting regime that actually attracts some operators.

The fact that there are time-lines running, with deadlines for decisions that could liberalise the broadcasting environment, makes it probable that there will be some changes to the settings within which the industry operates.

How radical and deregulatory those changes might be may depend on the outcome of the election: Labor's Lindsay Tanner appears to have a far more holistic view of media industry policy than his Liberal counterparts.

If there were to be significant changes to the existing ground rules for broadcasters, however, it would be difficult to contain reforms to the sector. There would inevitably be a need to revive discussion about foreign investment in the media generally, as well as the cross-media restrictions.

Thus Williams's reviews have the potential to do what his predecessor, Richard Alston, refused to do, and put on the table all the eccentric media-specific rules and regulations which constrain the industry's dynamism.

Even without the reviews there would be pressure for some changes because the strong early response to Foxtel's digital rollout is undermining the free-to-air opposition to deregulation.

Foxtel has attracted almost as many subscribers to its digital service in its first few months of operations as the networks have attracted to their digital offerings in almost four years.

Foxtel will drive digital TV, control the entry of the digital signal to the home through its set-tops and further fragment the networks' audiences and advertising bases unless they have more flexibility to respond. The networks (other than Seven) were opposed to multi-channelling and lobbied successfully to make the rules for datacasting so restrictive that they precluded any commercial offering at all.

Williams's reviews hold the prospect of the networks being able to offer subscription or pay-per-view services alongside their free-to-air channels - an opportunity for them to develop their own pay TV businesses. That might become even more compelling if they faced a new free-to-air competitor as well.

The blueprint for media reform was provided by the Productivity Commission in 2000. The commission recognised that the key to broadcasting reform was spectrum availability, and came up with an elegant, market-driven, use-it-or-sell-it set of incentives, based on a less wasteful standard definition signal, which would have accelerated the penetration of digital TV and freed up spectrum early to liberalise entry to the sector.

The Government opted instead for the high-definition standard and parallel analog-digital broadcasting until 2007, effectively protecting the networks from any competition (other than from Foxtel) for the larger part of a decade.

That decision can't be undone, but the basic vision of freeing up the digital broadcasting environment, creating opportunities for new players to enter the sector and leaving the decisions on what they offered mainly to them remains appealing.

The market would sort out the winners and losers, and determine how the spectrum was used, instead of the Government awarding oligopoly rents and dictating technologies and content.

If broadcasting can be deregulated, it would make sense to pursue parallel liberalisation of the media ownership rules. The Productivity Commission favoured staged deregulation of the ownership rules, with the restrictions on foreign ownership lifted first to widen the pool of industry participants (and avoid further concentration of the existing oligopolies) and subsequently the removal of the cross-media rules.

There is convergence occurring between technologies and content on platforms that are increasingly digital. Maintaining artificial barriers to dynamism and market-driven creativity creates distortions and confers advantage on the basis of incumbency rather than merit.

The Williams reviews, regardless of which party gets to decide on them, will produce the opportunity to finally put in place an industry landscape driven by national and consumer interests rather than by those of existing media moguls and the politicians out to appease them.

TAB promises pubs TV deal

From http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,9556457%255E462,00.html

TAB executives have agreed to give some clubs and pubs a discount on the fees they pay to use the Sky racing channel, in order to get the hotels on side now that there's competition from a rival racing channel.

The deal with the Australian Hotels Association [AHA] gives member hotels a 9.75 per cent discount on their subscription fees and guarantees the fees won't rise until June 30, 2006.

TAB's Sky Channel angered AHA members earlier this year when it lost the rights to televise Sydney races.

It worsened an already difficult relationship with the AHA, which had already been complaining that the subscription fees it paid for Sky were too high.

AHA officials threatened legal action over the loss of Sydney racing coverage.

Sky Channel then faced competition for the first time when the Sydney racing clubs set up their own channel - providing it free of charge to hundreds of pubs and clubs in NSW.

In the face of that competition, the NSW TAB has tried to appease the AHA with the discount.

The discount is backdated to March 20, when the betting group lost the broadcasting rights to the Sydney races, and will end in the unlikely event that those rights are regained.

TAB will also pay a special promotion fee to hotels that operate PubTAB services.

"The amount each hotel receives will be confirmed in the coming weeks after further discussions between the AHA and Tab's Wagering division," directors said in a statement.

TAB managing director Warren Wilson said the AHA and the company had also agreed to hold quarterly meetings.

TAB shares yesterday closed at $4.63.

AsiaSat says digital switch won't hurt earnings

From http://www.thestandard.com.hk/thestandard/news_detail_frame.cfm?articleid=47618&intcatid=1

Asia Satellite Telecommunications (AsiaSat) said the move to digital broadcasting will not hurt its profits, because the majority of its existing clients have already made the switch from analogue.

Typically, broadcasters will rent 80 per cent less capacity after converting to digital.

Deputy chief executive William Wade said yesterday that about 80-90 per cent of its clients have already switched to digital, and so the company has already felt the effects of the conversion.

``The switch will not impact us,'' he said, adding the clients had migrated to digital several years ago.

The 30 per cent Citic Group-owned satellite operator, which operates three satellites, now serves more than 60 television networks and broadcast companies. Last month, one of its customers, Tom Group, the multimedia flagship of tycoon Li Ka-shing, said it would pay some HK$100 million compensation in the first quarter to AsiaSat as its pay-TV arm, China Entertainment Television (CETV), was terminating a contract earlier than initially agreed. Tom said CETV was cutting the contract because CETV would need less capacity when the network switches from analogue to digital format. Tom Group has also signed a new contract with AsiaSat.

AsiaSat chief executive Peter Jackson said the company has not made a decision on when to book the HK$100 million. Meanwhile, company secretary Denis Lau said yesterday that he expects the company to book about HK$300 million in depreciation costs, up from HK$222.28 million in 2003.

AsiaSat's 24 per cent drop in net profit in 2003 to HK$424 million from HK$555 million was partly caused by higher depreciation costs, which were 33.4 per cent higher than in 2002. The company's current three in-orbit satellites - AsiaSat 2, AsiaSat 3S and AsiaSat 4 - account for some 72 per cent of its total assets, at HK$4.16 billion as at the end of last year.

Jackson said yesterday that the near-term operating environment for the industry will remain tough, as there are few new broadcasting operators entering the market.

However, he expects its 45.3 per cent-owned broadband and multimedia service arm, SpeedCast, to turn around this year from its HK$40 million loss last year.

TELE-satellite News - Number 20/2004 ­ 16 May 2004 -

A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by

TELE-satellite International

Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition

A S I A & P A C I F I C



Viewers could have another TV n station to tune into
as the Federal Government considers putting another
licence up for grabs. Communications Minister Daryl
Williams said the Government was looking at a fourth
commercial TV licence after the three licence
moratorium expires in 2006. The proposal has sparked
outrage from Australia's commercial TV players. The
issue of a new commercial TV licence is being examined
as part of four reviews the Government is carrying out
on the introduction of digital television. Opposition
communications spokesman Lindsay Tanner said the
reviews were the Government's way of putting off
dealing with ``the shambles'' of its digital
television regime. The prospect of another television
licence comes as the Senate prepares to debate, for a
second time, the Government's controversial media
ownership rules.


Australian Jockey Club chief executive Tony King
expects Sydney racing to be available on pay-TV within
two months and isn't concerned about the NSW Country
Racing Council signing a long-term deal with Sky
Channel. The CRC has signed a deal believed to be
worth $3 million, up from the current $1 million
contract, meaning Sky will broadcast NSW country
racing well into the next decade. King said the Sydney
Racing channel, available on broadband internet and in
pubs and clubs via satellite, was being expanded by
the day.


The Australian government is to merge the Australian
Broadcasting Authority (ABA) and the Australian
Communications Authority (ACA) next year to establish
a new-look media and communications regulator, ABC
News has reported. The Australian Communications and
Media Authority will regulate telecommunications,
broadcasting, radio and online content from July 1
next year.


Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) Managing
Director Russell Balding has welcomed the federal
government's commitment to renew funding for the ABC's
National Interest Initiative Programme, announced in
the recent budget. "This funding of almost US$12.5
million per annum will allow the ABC to continue
delivering its new programmes and services,
particularly to regional centres throughout
Australia," Balding said. "With over 57 new full-time
regional radio positions created, new regional radio
stations in Wagin, Ballarat, Katherine and Erina and
over 110 hours of additional television programming -
we can safely assure their continuation with this
funding." Balding said he was also pleased the
government had agreed to allocate a much needed extra
US$2.9 million per annum to the ABC to cover cost
increases in television program acquisitions.



Phoenix Satellite Television, is poised to take
InfoNews Channel into profitability next year.
Phoenix, 37.6 per cent owned by News Corp, roared to a
first-quarter net profit of HK$40.5 million. It was
Phoenix's first quarterly profit in more than three
years as advertising sales climbed, driven by the
economic boom in the mainland. InfoNews Channel, the
24-hour news channel granted landing rights in the
mainland in January last year, generated a revenue of
HK$44.8 million, up from HK$2.5 million a year
earlier. Segment operating loss was cut 94.3 per cent
to HK$1.7 million.


Irdeto Access has signed a license agreement with
Shanghai Media Group to supply its large-scale
conditional access solution; Irdeto PIsys, initially
to protect the live sport events broadcast by the SMG
over satellite. SMG is a leading broadcasting media
group based in Shanghai and its businesses include 11
TV channels, 10 radio stations, 2 newspapers and 2
magazines. The company has recently purchased the
exclusive TV broadcast rights for "China Super Soccer"
and "China AA Soccer" starting in May 2004. In
addition it is currently negotiating with other event
organisers to gain the broadcast rights for further
live events.


Leading pay-TV operator i-Cable Communications is
adding a net 10,000 television subscribers each month.
Chairman Stephen Ng said i-Cable's monthly churn rate
was about 1 per cent in the first quarter of this
year. According to the company, its pay TV
subscription grew by about 8 per cent in 2003 to
656,000, largely due to ``the attraction of the FIFA
World Cup''. Ng added that the costs to i-Cable of
securing the right to broadcast English Premier League
football over the coming three seasons was below
market expectations but declined to give specific
figures. The company is lining up Euro 2004 football
programmes in its bid to attract new customers and
bolster its subscriber base, he said. i-Cable reported
2003 net profit of HK$220 million, up 88 per cent year
on year.


Channel NewsAsia, the Singapore-based news and
information channel, is to start broadcasting to
viewers in China’s top hotels and foreign residential
compounds. This comes with the granting of rights by
China’s State Administration of Radio, Film and
Television, and the signing of a mutual landing
agreement today in Beijing. Under the agreement signed
between MediaCorp, which operates Channel NewsAsia,
and China International TV Corporation (CITV), both
parties will work out the details for Channel
NewsAsia’s distribution in China, and for China’s CCTV
9 channel to be carried on cable in Singapore by June
1. Launched in 1999, Channel NewsAsia is viewed in
more than 16 million homes and hotels in 18
territories across Asia.



NTT DoCoMo and SKY Perfect, the Japanese pay-TV
provider, are to trial live TV services over the FOMA
3G network. The public trial will enable subscribers
to view SKY PerfecTV live and access archived content
using DoCoMo's M-stage V-Live. There are already
several handsets available in Japan which include
integrated analogue TV tuners, but DoCoMo will be the
first operator to provide television services over its
own network. Operators in South Korea provide a
similar service and video traffic is said to account
for about 50 percent of all data transmission over
South Korean mobile networks. DoCoMo and SKY will
choose 3000 people equipped with FOMA 900i series
handsets to test the service. It is expected to launch
commercially by March 2006. Channels which will be
available include Kids Station Inc., Samurai TV. Inc
and Bloomberg.



Satellite TV operator Astro will offer more than 100
new channels by next year. There are already six
free-to-air television channels, and there are still
plans for more stations, according to the country's
television regulator. Government broadcaster RTM
operates two channels as does private station TV3,
while NTV7 and Channel Nine are the other two
stations. Broadcast licences have been issued to two
other companies - Fine TV and MiTV - but these two
companies have not announced when they will roll out
services. Fine TV is planning to offer video-on-demand
over broadband cable while MiTV is planning a digital
service. Astro, which started operating
subscription-based satellite television services six
years ago, already offers more than 50 television and
radio channels. 'Another significant highlight we
expect to deliver next year is Astro's capacity to
provide a previously unimaginable 100 plus new
channels,' the company said. Its ability to offer more
channels is a result of next year's launch of its
third satellite, Measat 3. With its new capacity, the
operator will also soon be made available to
Indonesia, Bangladesh, Thailand and India. Astro now
has a subscriber base in Malaysia of more than 1.39
million and has a market share of 20 per cent of all
television viewers, the second highest of all stations
in Malaysia.



The state-run Myanmar Radio and Television (MRTV)
launched a new channel the MRTV-4 on May 15 to
increase telecasting of news, education and
entertainment programs. Foreign video films and TV
series, music programs, Karaoke songs, daily
newspapers, weekly journals and monthly magazines as
well as excerpts from other local TV stations such as
Myawaddy TV will be aired round the clock through
MMbox, according to the MRTV. In addition, the
programs of Radio Myanmar and Yangon City FM featuring
music and advertisements can also be enjoyed through
theMMBox. TV was introduced in Myanmar in 1980 and the
country has two TVstations -- the state-operated MRTV
and the military-run Myawaddy TV. The MRTV Myanmar
language programs and the MRTV-3 English language
programs are being telecast through Thai Com-3
satellite. Meanwhile, the country is also making
efforts to enhance its radio and TV services in
conformity with global changes and development,
arranging to upgrade its radio and TV machine and
equipment by changing its present TV system to digital
one. The MRTV is now making satellite news available
with the cooperation of the China Central Television
(CCTV), Cable NetworksNews (CNN), the Japan
Broadcasting Corporation (NHK).



The Singapore government has set aside a further
US$37.8 million for a media development fund over the
next five years, the Straits Times has reported. This
will add to the US$58.1 million that the Media
Development Authority (MDA) has already earmarked for
its Media 21 plan to develop the local media industry.
The plan aims to increase the sector's contribution to
the country's gross domestic product from the current
1.56 per cent to 3 per cent by 2012. The US$37.8
million will be used mainly to boost content,
capability, and market and digital media development.
In addition, the MDA is also looking into new
initiatives, including setting up a media investment
fund and providing more overseas attachment and
training opportunities. The Media 21 plan was unveiled
last July, but only US$4.8 million has been invested
since then. So far, the MDA has financed 25 projects
in television, film and digital media.



SK Telecom Co., South Korea's top wireless company,
said on May 10 regulatory hurdles will delay by up to
a month the full operation of satellite-based mobile
broadcasting service, originally scheduled for July.
The delay was mostly attributable to slow
decision-making by the Korea Broadcasting Commission,
which has the power to oversee broadcasting companies,
according to officials at TU Media Corp., a venture of
SK Telecom for the satellite-based mobile TV project.



The dispute over iTV's arbitration windfall may go to
the United Nations. An alliance of consumer, media and
pro-democracy groups said it would ask a UN committee
on international trade practices to probe Thailand's
"sub-standard" arbitration system. The alliance would
use the iTV ruling as a prime example, said the
secretary-general of the Campaign for Popular
Democracy, Suriyasai Katasila. The arbitration ruling
granted iTV a massive concession-fee cut of Bt17
billion and allowed it to raise its entertainment
content to 50 per cent of overall programming. The
ruling triggered an outcry, with many saying iTV,
which is part of the business empire of Prime Minister
Thaksin Shinawatra's family, was getting special
treatment. Suriyasai said the alliance would also cite
the contentious arbitration ruling that called for the
government to pay Bt6.2 billion in compensation to a
private firm over an expressway-contract dispute. He
said the alliance would inform the UN committee that
the arbitration standards in both cases fell short of
international standards because members of the
arbitration committees or their relatives had
conflicts of interest.


No update Sunday


No update Saturday


The Romainians are coming? Looks like a new ethnic service Via Nss6, 5 Romainian channels and 5 Radios via Ku. $55 a month? anyone have some more info about it? I had a look at how many Romainians are in Australia and I wonder how they can think of doing such a service for such a small group?

"According to ABS 1996 census data, there were 12,282 Romania-born persons in Australia, but 9,165 Romanian speakers, 3,951 of them in Victoria.
The largest number of Romania-born persons resided in Victoria (4,844), followed by NSW with 3,571 persons.
According to the same Census, the second generation of Romania-born numbered 6,181 people.
(Data kindly supplied by DIMA as used in official Immigration Department proceedings - Aug 2000)"

Anyway the website promoting the service is http://www.romans.com.au/
Channel listed on the site are REALITATEA TV, TVR INTERNATIONAL, ETNO, ATOMIC, R.T Austral Asia TV. There is also reference to TvR International broadcasting there from full time from August 1st .

From my Emails & ICQ

From Steve Hume

More Chinastar1 87.5E activity

4133 H "FORTUNE TV" feeds Sr 5632 Fec 3/4

3550 V SR 7500 Loads 3 channels
C1 TVB8 VPID 0049 APID 0033
C2 MATV VPID 1057 APID 1058
C3 Channel V VPID 2097 APID 2081

3847v SR 5632
Loads 1 channel
(Unknown Chinese Service) VPID 308 APID 256

ST1 power is up

For those who want to give it a go, it looks like 3632v, 26667 3/4 power
is up on ST1 @88.0°E.

NEWS 24x7
Steve Hume

From the Dish

Intelsat 701 180E Updates in CanalSatellite Caledonie, Mediagurd:
Planete Thalassa and TF 1 have started on 10975 H, PIDs 171/124 and 174/136. RMF has started on 11610 H, APID 240.

Superbird 6 Superbird 6 is now geostationary, around 150-155 East.

(Craigs comment, testing at 150 E?)

Optus B3 152E 12525 V "CTN (Cambodia)" is back on , Fta, PIDs 2060/2020.

Apstar 1A 134E 4120 H "XinJiang Cable TV 1-3" is FTA.

Palapa C2 113E 11490 V "Herbalife Asia" has left (NTSC).

Telkom 1 108E 4084 H New PIDs for Trans TV on : 308/256.

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3960 H "CNN Radio" is now encrypted.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4111 H "TVB Xing He Channel" is encrypted again.

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 3830 H "The Nei Monggol TV" mux has left .

Express AM 11 is back at 96.5 East.

NSS 6 95E 12530 V The DAN mux has left .

ST 1 88E 3632 V "FTV Entertainment, BBC World and CTV" are now encrypted.

Thaicom 3 78.5E 3600 H "Herbalife Asia" has left , replaced by a test card.

Telstar 10 76.5E 3652 H New SR for the TV Lanka mux Sr : 9000.


First space tug set to launch in 2007

From http://www.newscientist.com/news/news.jsp?id=ns99994992

Wayward satellites could be dragged back into working orbits using a space tug that is set to make its maiden flight in 2007.

The orbital tugboats could rescue spacecraft placed into the wrong orbit during a flawed launch. They could also reposition orbiting satellites that have simply drifted into a useless low orbit over time, as a result of the Earth's gravitational pull.

A deal to launch the first of these spacecraft in 2007 was signed by Orbital Recovery, the company behind the idea, and the European launch firm Arianespace, on Wednesday at the Berlin Air Show. Four more space tugs are scheduled to launch during 2008.

The design for the ConeXpress Orbital Life Extension Vehicles (CX OLEV) is based on the platform used to carry normal satellites into space aboard an Ariane 5. After separating from the launch rocket, the tug would then detach from the primary payload and move off.

Docking procedure

The tugs will be launched from the European spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana and will weigh between 1200 and 1400 kilograms at launch. The CX OLEV would grab hold of a wayward satellite using a grappling device to connect to one of its primary motors. These are suitable because they are located at a satellite's centre of gravity and are of a fairly uniform design.

The docking process would be automated but monitored by a controller on the ground. The tug would then use an ion-propulsion engine to slowly move the satellite to another position. The tug would also remain attached in order to perform further manoeuvres.

Orbital Recovery has not yet been secured a contract to rescue any errant satellites but a company spokesman says there should be no shortage of customers. "Discussions are underway with the first potential clients," he told New Scientist. "There are at least 50 satellites that in the next 10 to 20 years will be potential candidates."

Rachel Villian, senior analyst with EuroConsult, a firm of consultant specialising in the satellite business, says the idea has strong merits. "It's good to have something new," she told New Scientist.

Cost analysis

But Villian adds that each satellite company will need to carefully weigh the cost and risk of such mission compared to that of simply launching a new satellite. "It will be a very unique question for each satellite company," she says. "It's a matter of economics."

Other experts have pointed out that docking with another spacecraft in orbit is a particularly risky procedure. Villian says Orbital Recovery will need to convince potential customers that its tugboats can perform reliably before they will agree to use them.

A space tug could in theory provide a way to extend the service life of the Hubble Space Telescope. In January 2004, NASA decided to scrap a crucial shuttle mission planned for 2006 to repair the telescope. This would have extended Hubble life until at least 2010 but now Hubble does not have much chance of lasting longer than 2007.

Some observers have suggested using a tug to manoeuvre the telescope to near the International Space Station (ISS). This is because a shuttle repair crew would need to reach the ISS in an emergency.

The Orbital Recovery spokesman says this might be possible, using a significantly modified CX OLEV, but adds that this is not part of the company's business plan.

(Craigs comment, the Gorizonts perhaps?)

Krasnoyarsk engineers to introduce new satellite at ILA-2004

From http://www.itar-tass.com/eng/level2.html?NewsID=808120&PageNum=0

KRASNOYARSK, May 13 (Itar-Tass) - Specialists of the Zheleznogorsk-based applied mechanics research and production association (AMA) named after Academician Mikhail Reshetnev are to introduce a new unique spacecraft -- the heavy-duty satellite Express-AT -- at the current international aerospace show ILA-'04 in Berlin.

The satellite, which was devised at the AMA quite recently, constitutes the foremost advance in national satellite manufacture. Vassily Popov, one of the AMA's leading designers, told Itar-Tass on Thursday, "More than 60 broadband television channels -- more than twice as many as those on board the previous satellites of this type -- will function aboard the newly-devised spacecraft".

The launch of Express-AT satellites into space will enable Russia to switch over to a new quality of television and radio broadcasting, telephony, the transmission of data in the digital format and access to the Internet.

The first satellite of the series -- the Express-AM22 -- was deployed into orbit in December 2003. The AMA accounts for the manufacture of about 70 percent of all Russian-made satellites.

Golden Telecom Signs with Intelsat for Additional 10 Years to Accommodate Growth

From Press Release (Slightly Edited)

London, England, 13 May 2004 – Intelsat announced today that Golden Telecom, Inc. (NASDAQ:GLDN), a leading facilities-based provider of integrated telecommunications and Internet services in Russia and the Commonwealth of Independent States, has signed a 10-year contract with Intelsat for Ku-band satellite capacity for a major expansion of its telecom and Internet services in Russia and Central Asia. Golden Telecom, a long time user of the Intelsat system, purchased this capacity in addition to its existing multi-transponder contracts with Intelsat.

The additional capacity, totaling over 60 MHz, is provided over satellites located at the 60ºE and 83ºE orbital locations. An expanded number of Internet, data and regional voice services can now be provided to Internet Service Providers, major business centers, hotels, banks and other corporations that Golden Telecom serves.

“Internet and corporate network services in Russia are growing rapidly, requiring that telecom providers continually improve and grow their networks,” said Michal Cupa, COO of Golden Telecom. “Using Intelsat for our connectivity ensures that we have the network flexibility to expand and grow our business as and when it is needed to accommodate increased public demand for our services.”

Yuli Wexler, Vice President, Europe Sales for Intelsat’s Data, Carrier and Internet unit, stated, “Intelsat helps our customers grow their businesses in existing markets and expand into new ones by providing them with the constant support and flexibility necessary to respond quickly to changing market demands. We are pleased that Golden Telecom has come back to Intelsat to fill its additional requirements.”

Russia falls under the footprint of all of the nine Intelsat satellites that provide coverage of the region. Because of its size, Russia is the only country in the world able to utilize satellites located in any or all of the three ocean regions. In addition to Golden Telecom, Intelsat currently serves major oil & gas operators, banks, ISPs, television networks and international and national operators in Russia by providing corporate network, Internet, data and other services.

About Intelsat

Building on 40 Years of Leadership. As a global communications leader with 40 years of experience, Intelsat helps service providers, broadcasters, corporations and governments deliver information and entertainment anywhere in the world, instantly, securely and reliably. Intelsat's global reach and expanding solutions portfolio enable customers to enhance their communications networks, venture into new markets and grow their businesses with confidence. For more information, visit www.intelsat.com.

About Golden Telecom (www.goldentelecom.com)

Golden Telecom, Inc., NASDAQ: “GLDN” is a leading facilities-based provider of integrated telecommunications and Internet services in major population centers throughout Russia and other countries of the Commonwealth of Independent States. The Company offers voice, data and Internet services to corporations, operators and consumers using its metropolitan overlay networks in major cities including Moscow, Kiev, St. Petersburg, Krasnoyarsk, Nizhny Novgorod, Samara and via intercity fiber optic and satellite-based networks – including 165 combined access points in Russia and other countries of the CIS. The Company offers mobile services in Kiev and Odessa.

Intelsat Contacts: Golden Telecom Contacts:

Jodi Katz Public Relations:
Jodi.katz@intelsat.com Anna Chin Go Pin
+1 202 944 8223 e-mail: achin@gldn.net

Susan Gordon
Susan.gordon@intelsat.com Investor Relations:
+1 202 944 6890 Tom Adshead
e-mail: tadshead@gldn.net


New channel Myanmar Tv channel 4 to start on Thaicom 3 in the mux on 3569 H Sr 12500 Fec 3/4 Global Beam. Might be some english on this one.

Express AM 11 DID not move past 96.5 as Lyngsat has shown

Info about the Arab Broadcasting mux

Scatmagazine May 2004 issue out online

Jon's Asia Weekly

Issue 4

"Simple Things"

Amazing how the simple things get in our way at times
isn’t it. The simple things.

Take the simple thing of moving your satellite dish
from one satellite radio station to another on another
satellite. This should be a simple press of the
remote control and off you go listening to a new radio

If you are not careful, all too often the technology
can jump in and bite you.

The other day I went to move the 10 foot dish here
from Thaicom 2/3 to Asiasat 3S. Sounds simple, yes?
Now I have a slow actuator on this dish (36”
SuperJack) and it does take a while to move, but after
about three minutes I guessed there was a problem as
no audio was coming out of the surround sound system
(did not have the TV turned on).

To my surprise when I turned the TV on to see what was
going on, I discovered (1) the system language was in
Arabic and (2) all the LNB settings on all 29
satellites had been changed from C Band Single to KU
Band Universal.

It doesn’t sound much does it, the wrong language and
wrong LNB settings? Try it sometime yourself! So 30
minutes later and 29 changes to the satellite LNB
settings after spending a few minutes trying to work
out where all the English language had gone, we were
back in business, and one little three year old here
had a sore hand.

This got me to thinking.

If she could change these settings without knowing
what she was doing, how often do we or for that matter
our friends, suffer from similar problems? What is
the first thing we do? Blame the system, [Hey who is
using the remote control? ­ Blame them] blame the
satellite company, blame yourself (no ­ never). One
the set top boxes we use allot here are the SilverBox
II and one of the things I love about this box is the
ability to make the remote control “dummy proof”. No
more “I changed something daddy”, “it does not work”
or comments like stupid remote control, dumb system
and so on.


Sounds so simple, it should have been done years ago,
but I guess 60% of the users of this STB and others do
not know what they can do with such a neat tool. The
SilverBox allows you to place either a password, or to
block certain key stroke commands on the remote, thus
ensuring your system is not mucked up by a three year
old or yourself (I say looking in the mirror). I
should have smacked myself for not turning this “dummy
proof” function on, rather than young Grace for
playing with the remote in the first place.

It is the simple things that trip us up all the time,
and once we take the time to do little things like
this and putting them in place, your system will
continue to function as it should every time with out

It is a bit like the KU vs C band dishes. For years
we have been conditioned to believe that a mesh dish
will not work on the KU band, and for years many of
the readers in this forum have been reading long
winded excuses to why it simply will not work. Well I
am no magician but when I first saw and tested the
“Extra” series of dishes from Dynasat, I was amazed
at the results. There is a neat Thai saying that goes
along the lines of “ten eyes are better than ten

The dish is only 7.5 foot in size, but heck it but
out preformed my then 10 foot dish. Now this can not
be right I thought, size does matter right?

These bright guys at Dynasat have developed a system

1. Houses a dual LNB system at the focal point ­ both
C & KU band on what is called a “dual plate”

2. Has mesh small enough to give similar performance
to the equivalent offset sized dish

3. Like the little battery bunny, just keeps working
and working and working.

With modern day technology as it is, it has amazed me
that the “dish” technology is not going on in leaps
and bounds like say the STB technology is. Why is
this? Why is it that the thing that does the most for
our system, is often the most neglected item of
technology we use?

Technology in this part of the world has all of a
sudden, simply crept up and over taken us with these
new dishes. No fanfare, no trumpets from the
galleries, just great practical solutions.

Now armed with my dummy proof remote and dish I can
surf the best of both worlds, both the C & Ku Bands
from the comfort of my armchair. Are you doing this?
No, why not? Is the world still “flat” in your part
of the globe? I am not a magician, just a user of a
magic system (smile).

Why is it the simple things that are also the best


Nice to see more and more Japanese TV being shown FTA
over the last week
Lots of noise still being made over the adult
entertainment people who are broadcasting out into
space their TV programmes. Strange, how it is the
authorities in Australia making all the noise.


Great news, the Great Sports Channel has been “Free
To Air” this week on the ChinaStar 1 bird. These guys
do such a good job and have made most of the region
happy again, as we can now all get out daily diet of

Bangladesh has it, Shri Lanka has it, Cambodia has it,
Laos has it, most of the world has it. New Zealand
does not have it! Where is the New Zealand TV on the C
band? Enough said as this is becoming a hot topic,
wait and see.

A great thing happened here this week, we saw for the
first time in ages fellow hobbyists here in Asia
sharing information on their finds when they have been
DX’ing satellites. The tennis has been an absolute
delight to watch.

HOT: ABC Asia Pacific. I have said this before and I
will say it again. Well done ABC Asia Pacific. The
sports content from channel 9 and others is proving
such a hit right around Asia. I was talking to some
industry people in Jakarta this week and they like us
have had a big rush on people wanting the ABC
installed before “Friday” so they can watch the NRL
and AFL. The H.B.B stigma (if there was ever such a
thing, as we all dearly love him here in this
household) has been lifted and ABC AP is now a major
channel of choice across the whole region.


A new look and feel for the new eMetabox I this month.
Well done Metaware. With the new firmware upgrade to
version 4.04 they are proving to be one of the best
little home systems and great value for money. So many
neat features, and again it is the simple ones that
makes it nice to use.

New ProgDVB version 4.38.6 out this week

HOT: PCI card running myHTpc .. More on this next


Bright Spark, the chap who likes to play with the
impossible now has three KU band and 1 C band LNB
hanging off his small offset dish. Now get this, he
has to stabilize the dish to stop it falling over due
to all weight at the focal point. Keep up the good


More places to get your satellite TV sport fix when
traveling to this part of the world. The Green Parrot
in Soi 33, Chequers in Soi Nana, The Bus Stop also in
Soi 4 (Nana) pop in and have a beer and watch the
great sports.


The Stanly Cup playoff’s were in round two this week,
and proved to be a big hit at uncle Bob’s place, The

Check out Duabi Sports on AsiaSat 2 ­ well worth a

Again thanks to the Great Sports Channel for being FTA
this week.

Know any great sports feeds? Know any great sports
channels? Let me know

If you have items you want posted or question ­ email
Jon at joncl@yahoo.com

From my Emails & ICQ

From Siamglobal (Thailand)








From the Dish

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4110 H New SR for the TVB mux on : 13650.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4111 H "I-Horizon has replaced the 2nd TVB 8" Fta, PIDs 1410/1420.
AsiaSat 3 105.5E 4111 H "TVB Xing He Channel" is Encrypted.

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 12221 V "China World International" has left .


Myanmar to launch new TV channel

From http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/2004-05/13/content_1467206.htm

YANGON, May 13 (Xinhuanet) -- The state-run Myanma Radio and Television (MRTV) is due to launch a new channel the MRTV-4 on Saturday to increase telecasting of news, education and entertainment programs.

Foreign video films and TV series, music programs, Karaoke songs, daily newspapers, weekly journals and monthly magazines as well as excerpts from other local TV stations such as Myawaddy TV will be aired round the clock through MMbox, according to the MRTV.

In addition, the programs of Radio Myanmar and Yangon City FM featuring music and advertisements can also be enjoyed through the MMBox.

TV was introduced in Myanmar in 1980 and the country has two TVstations -- the state-operated MRTV and the military-run Myawaddy TV.

The MRTV Myanmar language programs and the MRTV-3 English language programs are being telecast through ThaiCom-3 satellite.

Meanwhile, the country is also making efforts to enhance its radio and TV services in conformity with global changes and development, arranging to upgrade its radio and TV machine and equipment by changing its present TV system to digital one.

The MRTV is now making satellite news available with the cooperation of the China Central Television (CCTV), Cable NetworksNews (CNN), the Japan Broadcasting Corporation (NHK)

WORLDSAT Signs KT Corp for Northeast Asian Satellite Services; Regional Telecom Expanding Networks & Solutions on WS-1 Satellite

From Press Release

PRINCETON, N.J. & SINGAPORE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--May 12, 2004--WORLDSAT, a wholly owned subsidiary of SES AMERICOM, an SES GLOBAL Company (Euronext Paris; Luxembourg and Frankfurt Stock Exchanges: SESG) and KT Corporation (KT), Korea's leading telecommunications services provider and an operator of a satellite fleet in the Asia-Pacific region, announced today that they have entered into a long term framework agreement to provide services through several high-powered Ku-band transponders on WORLDSAT-1 (formerly known as AAP-1) satellite.

"We have a long history with KT Corporation that began with our preparations for the launch of this satellite, they have been a regional ally and key customer as they have extended their impact in the region with DTH, VSAT and other satellite-based applications. We are delighted to expand our relationship with them on the Northeast Asian beam of WORLDSAT-1 (WS-1)," said WORLDSAT President, Andreas Georghiou. He continued, "This agreement is consistent with our strategy to cooperate with key regional operators combining their knowledge and experience in the local markets with WORLDSAT's global assets."

"Even as we prepare for the launch KoreaSat 5 in early 2006, our customers' bandwidth requirements are projected to continue growing and the high-powered bandwidth and coverage of WS-1 is a perfect fit for their applications. WS-1's orbital location will minimize the time and effort required to re-point antennas operating on Koreasat-3, and offers the additional prospect of acting as a back-up satellite to KT's fleet" said KT Manager, Wangjoo Han.

WORLDSAT-1 is a high-powered Ku-band satellite operating from 108.2 degrees East. Launched at the end of 2000, the satellite has three beams covering Northeast Asia and the Philippines, China and South Asia including India.

About KT Corporation

KT (KT Corp.) was established on December 10, 1981 with the mission of promoting benefits for the nation and improving the public welfare. This mission was based on the plan of converting KT into a public corporation by separating the communication sector from the Ministry of Communications (now Ministry of Information and Communication). On December 11, 2001, it first took on its current name and declared the birth of the global corporation on the occasion of its 20th anniversary.

Although KT was a late bloomer in the high-speed Internet market, it was ranked first domestically in June 2000, a year after starting their operations. In January 2003, the company surpassed its own record by posting 5 million subscribers thus making KT one of the world's largest broadband service providers.

KT was reborn as a completely privatized corporation in May 2002. Based on the privatization plan, KT is determined to further grow as one of the world's elite by realizing the corporate vision of the Valuable Networking Company - that of creating the highest value and providing the best service for its customers.


WORLDSAT was created in 2003 by SES GLOBAL, the world's largest satellite company, as a subsidiary of SES AMERICOM, the New Jersey-based operating company and the largest and highest quality supplier of satellite services in the United States. WORLDSAT provides satellite services to customers with applications as diverse as mobile communications, broadcasting, internet connections, and data networks, added value with unparalleled connections to the premier regional satellite fleets including SES AMERICOM and SES ASTRA in Europe, Middle East and Africa. The newly-formed business unit has satellites currently operating at 108.2 degrees East (WORLDSAT-1, formerly AAP-1), 172 degrees East (Spacenet-4), 47 degrees West (TDRS-6), and 37.5 degrees West (Satcom-C1). In addition, the company has two new satellites, WS-2 and WS-3, planned for launch in 2004 and 2005.

Thai Shin Satellite to sell shares in June-July

From http://www.deepikaglobal.com/ENG5_sub.asp?ccode=ENG5&newscode=52901

BANGKOK, May 12 (Reuters) Thailand's Shin Satellite PCL, Asia's second-largest satellite operator, said on Wednesday it would sell $90 million of new shares in late June or early July, depending on market conditions.

Chief Financial Officer Tanadit Charoenchan told reporters the company might delay the planned share sale if the Thai stock market index falls below the key psychological support of 600 points.

The index was up 0.63 percent to close at 622.01 on Wednesday, recovering from a six-month low hit on Monday.

Shin Sat, founded by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra, plans to use the proceeds mainly to expand services of the company's new fourth satellite, iPSTAR, Tanadit said.

Tanadit said he expected second-quarter revenues to be higher than 1.52 billion baht ($38 million) posted in the first quarter.

The firm anticipated attracting enough new customers to compensate for the loss of revenue when India's Department of Space terminated its lease on seven transponders from Shin Sat in December.

These had contributed 330 million baht per year, or about 11 percent of the company's revenues from satellite transponders.

Tanadit said higher revenues from iPSTAR terminals and robust growth of its telephone business in Cambodia and Laos would help boost the second-quarter income.

Shin Sat is in the process of launching its high-speed iPSTAR, which it expects will be in full commercial service in the second half of 2004.

Shin Sat, 51 percent-owned by Shin Corp, the flagship of the telecommunications group founded by Thaksin, operates three satellites covering Asia, Australia, Africa and Europe. Its major rivals include Asia Satellite Telecommunications Co Ltd On Wednesday, Shin Sat shares closed down 1.9 percent to 25 baht, well off a four-year high of 44.50 baht hit in January

Phoenix rises from ashes of losses

From http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/english/doc/2004-05/13/content_330292.htm

Mainland-focused broadcaster Phoenix Satellite yesterday posted its first quarterly profit in nearly three years, as it benefited from a new ad selling strategy and tighter advertising rules in China.

The News Corp-backed company forecast continued profits for the rest of the year and said its previously struggling InfoNews channel was likely to break even soon.

"The factors that led to the dramatic turnaround in Phoenix's performance should continue to enhance Phoenix's performance over the remainder of the current financial year and beyond," the company said in a statement.

"The management is consequently extremely confident that Phoenix will continue to make a profit for the foreseeable future."

The company's return to the black after 11 consecutive quarterly losses came on the wings of a 64.1 per cent jump in revenue, including an 81.4 per cent increase in ad revenues.

Phoenix attributed its turnaround in part to a new ad selling model, which it characterized as one that uses multiple agencies.

Analysts also attributed the return to profitability to new Chinese rules limiting on-air ads, which drove advertisers to the nation's small pool of foreign-backed broadcasters.

Phoenix, which is 38 per cent owned by Rupert Murdoch's News Corp, posted a profit of HK$40.48 million for the three months through March, compared with a loss of HK$20.8 million a year earlier.

The company posted a HK$13 million loss in its quarter through December last year.

Phoenix shares closed up 2.84 per cent at HK$1.45 before the results were announced. The shares are up 78.1 per cent this year.

Few analysts provide forecasts for Phoenix, however one had predicted a first-quarter profit of HK$28 million.

Phoenix said its first-quarter revenue rose to HK$284.6 million from HK$173.4 million a year earlier. Advertising revenue, which accounted for about 94.3 per cent of total revenue, rose an even sharper 81.4 per cent.

Among its various channels, the company said InfoNews, widely blamed for dragging the company into the red, posted a sharp gain in revenue to HK$44.76 million from HK$2.5 million a year earlier.

"This proves that the Chinese audience has an appetite for news, and that news programming can make commercial sense in the Chinese market," Chairman Liu Changle said in a statement.

He said InfoNews continues to lose money due to its high cost nature, but its sharp rise in revenue means it will probably pass the break-even mark "in the near future."

Orbital Recovery Ltd. Signs Launch Ariane Services Contract For the ConeXpress Orbital Life Extension Vehicle "Space Tug"

From Press Release

Berlin, Germany, May 12, 2004 Orbital Recovery Ltd. today signed a long-term, exclusive launch services contract for the ConeXpress Orbital Life Extension Vehicle (CX OLEV ™) a unique spacecraft that will be deployed by Ariane 5 to serve as an orbital space tug.

This agreement inked with Arianespace at the Berlin Air Show covers the initial flight of a CX OLEV™ in 2007, followed by four additional launches beginning in 2008. Orbital Recovery Ltd. will order further flights in sets of three missions.

The ConeXpress Orbital Life Extension Vehicle will be carried as a secondary payload on Ariane 5. Its liftoff mass will be approximately 1,200-1,400 kg. Developed by European industry, CX OLEV is designed to extend the useful lifetime of multi-million dollar telecommunications satellites by 10 years or more, and also is capable of rescuing satellites stranded in incorrect orbits.

"Ariane is known for setting the standards in commercial launch services, and we look forward to using Ariane 5 for our CX OLEV which will set the standards for the in-orbit servicing of telecommunications satellites," said Phil Braden, Chief Executive Officer of Orbital Recovery Ltd.

Operating as an orbital "tugboat," the CX OLEV will supply propulsion, navigation and guidance to maintain a telecom satellite in its proper orbital slot for many years. Currently, telecommunications spacecraft are placed in a graveyard orbit as they deplete their on-board propellant loads near the end of the typical 10-15-year operation lifetimes even though the satellites' revenue-generating communications relay payloads continue to function.

Orbital Recovery Limited has identified more than 40 telecommunications satellites in orbit today that are candidates for life extension using the CX OLEV. In addition, the CX OLEV can be deployed to rescue spacecraft that have been placed in a wrong orbit, or which have become stranded in an incorrect orbital location during positioning maneuvers.

"We are pleased to provide launch services for this very innovative spacecraft, which continues Arianespace's policy of working with promising new payloads and their operators," said Arianespace Chief Executive Officer Jean-Yves Le Gall. "The mission flexibility of Ariane 5, combined with our experience in handling multi-satellite payloads, will enable the CX OLEV to be launched when needed to serve Orbital Recovery Ltd.'s mission requirements."

In an original approach to spacecraft design, the CX OLEV is manufactured from the payload adapter that is used on every Ariane 5 mission. This allows flight-proven hardware to serve as the CX OLEV structure, and opens regular launch opportunities for the space tug on Ariane 5.

Shaped like a truncated cone, the CX OLEV will continue to serve as a payload adapter for Ariane 5 missions, with the launcher's primary satellite payload mounted atop it. Once the primary payload has been released, the CX OLEV will be deployed from the launcher to begin its own mission as an independent space tug.

The industry team developing CX OLEV is led by the Netherlands' Dutch Space, and includes Germany's DLR German Aerospace Center and Kayser-Threde. Aon Space is providing insurance brokering and risk management services.

Orbital Recovery Ltd. recently initiated the B1 Phase of its program, which is funded by the company and the European Space Agency under its ARTES 4 Public-Private Partnership initiative.

Press and media contact:
The InfoWEST Group
Media relations agency for Orbital Recovery Corporation
Jeffrey Lenorovitz
International tel.: +33 (0)6 80 85 86 25
U.S. tel: +1 703 560-6330
U.S. mobile: +1 703 615-3646
e-mail: jleno@infowestgroup.com

Smile broadens to cable

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may85.htm

MUMBAI: Smile TV, the niche comedy channel that made its appearance on Zee's DTH platform Dish TV late last year, is now being made available through cable too.

While Smile is being pushed as 'India's first 24 hour comedy television channel', the other niche channels like Zee Classic (old Hindi films), FX Movies (English action movies), Premier Movies and Action are not being offered on cable. Yet.

Zee has launched an outdoor campaign for Smile, to create a consumer pull for the product. According to Ashish Kaul, Smile is being offered to viewers as part of the Zee bouquet in all areas where Zee subsidiary MSO Siticable is present.

Smile TV business head Abhijit Saxena says that while sitcoms and Hindi comedy films form the bulk of the programming now, sitcoms will form only a small part of the programming that the channel intends to offer over a period of time. Talks are on with production houses in the country for fresh comedy programming, that could also include other sub-genres of comedy like stand up and spoofs. The complete programming mix for the digital FTA channel should mature in six months' time, estimates Saxena.

Claiming that Smile is the only 24 hour comedy channel in the country (Sab with its mix of current affairs and comedy shows does not qualify as one, he says), Saxena says the channel is currently dipping into the Zee library for its programming.

Saxena oversees Smile as well as FX, the action movies channel in the Dish TV basket, while the other three niche movie channels, Premier, Action and Classic are being nurtured by Yogesh Radhakrishnan, who also looks after Zee Cinema and Zee Music.

While Smile has been added to the Zee bouquet over cable, the network also has plans to beef up the Dish TV bouquet with about 50 channels shortly, and intends to launch a marketing blitz to beef up the overall communication and marketing strategy.

(Craigs comment, has this one been added on Asiasat 3? since that platform is the feed for cable operators)


Optus Signed up with Ariane again for Launch of the D1 / D2 series satellites

Tech TV International feed will switch off in 30 days according to news reports.

The Great Sports channel On Chinastar 87.5E is FTA again

From my Emails & ICQ

From Andrew Harrison

News gets around these days Craig!
Bloody satellite communications :-)

Yes that is me that the article refers to and what a long drawn out affair it was too, 12/1 /04 to 4/5/04.
However the advertising it caused locally has seen a surge in sales and a certain amount of notoriety, now on the Apsattv main page!! Woo hoo.

Local pay tv operators and others complained that I was selling "illegal" decoders and satellite dishes as I don't have a local Pay TV Broadcast license known locally as an i4 licence, and I don't. I have never applied for one, but I could.

I have been selling receivers and dishes here for 10 years - all FTA stuff, no monthly payments. With the advent of Pay TV here in Port Vila a new industry has sprung up in the last 2 years with one operator charging over A$100 per month for their sevice. A nice little earner for them.

It seems Pay Tv operators want everyone watching satellite TV to be connected to THEIR bank account on a monthly basis.

Vanuatu Broadcasting Television Corporation (VBTC) is the local Government licencing body which receives 20% of monthly subscriptions from i4 licence holders plus an annual $6,000.00 licence fee.

Egged on by the pathetic Jeff Kong, failed EM TV tech and fugitive from the Kiribati TV fiasco (Kong's attempts at retailing the same equipment failed due to his personal ethics) VBTC demanded 20% of sales from me plus a $6000.00 annual licence fee for the i4. I refused, arguing that I retail set top boxes and satellite dishes which I am licenced to import and sell. I am not a provider, do not broadcast and do not charge monthly fees. I sell equpment for Star Sports, Asia Pacific, CCTV, European Bq etc etc.

I already pay 12.5% VAT to the Government and import duty of up to 25%.

My shop was raided in January by police officers and 10 members of the Vanuatu Mobile Force (Army). All my decoders/lnb's/ financial records and computers were confiscated and my personal satellite systems were ordered disconnected. The conduct of the police and VMF was professional and friendly.(they smiled as they cut the coax)

Vanuatu is a lovely place but it is a bit like living in a "Carry On movie"
You can go down the main steet and buy a copy of Office XP for $25.00 from a licenced retail shop.
Every video/DVD in every video shop is a pirate copy, including mine.

On the 4th May 2004 the local magistrate deemed that I am a broadcast provider and convicted me of not having the i4.

Kong appeared as a witness against me which turned out rather amusing as the defence took him to task over his alleged trashing of a Melbourne Cup UHF feed to the Ladies Charity Lunch when a heterodyne/same frequency transmission took place for the duration of the main race.

I was fined A$25.00......yep 25 bucks and all my equipment, records, passport etc returned to me.

I was not even asked to obtain an i4 licence.

I own licenced businesses on 3 Islands in this country, employ and train locals and I have been here 22 years.

In the past I have provided feeds to VBTC using my decoders and satellite dishes free of charge so they could broadcast 2 world cup soccer events and the Olympic Games on local TV. Unfortunately for the grassroots people i won't be doing this again.

I am a businessman with prominent stores and I became a target. There are others selling the same goods as me but I am better at it and drew attention to myself with my advertising.

I still sell the same equipment as before but now I am a convicted criminal.

I have 30 days to appeal.

Andrew Harrison.

From the Dish

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 12372 V "XingHua TV" has started on , PowerVu, SR 5400, FEC 3/4, PIDs 1110/1211.(China Beam)

Measat 1 91.5E 4167 H "HTV" has started on , Fta, SR 3261, FEC 3/4, PIDs 33/36.

ST 1 88E 12647 V New SR for the PTS mux on : 8000.

ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3848 V "GreatSports Channel" is back FTA.

Insat 3A 93.5E 3917 V "Ahimsaa" has left .
Insat 3A 93.5E 11630 H "Trace TV and EuroSport News have replaced Geo TV and CCTV 9" on ,Conax, PIDs 159/114 and 162/88.(India beam)

(DX Bozoth)


Optus in contract to launch D-series satellites

From http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/05/12/1084289738272.html

Australian telco Optus has signed a contract with Arianespace for the launch of its D1 and D2 satellites which it says will form the base of its satellite business over the next 10 years.

The two satellites will eventually replace Optus' B1 and B2 satellites, which are nearing the end of their useful life.

"Our sales folk have been very succesful in selling our existing capacity, it's fair to say that we've had unprecedented demand for these services and hence we've embarked on another service of satellites," said Optus Networks managing director Bill Hope today.

The D1 satellite will be launched by an Ariane 5 launcher at the end of 2005 and D2 will be launched by a Russian built Soyuz rocket in 2007.

"In the last 12 months some huge pieces of the puzzle have been landed to create a great future for this business," said Optus Wholesale & Satellite managing director Warren Hardy.

"We've done the Foxtel deal, they're locked away for 15 years, we've done the deal with Sky New Zealand, they're locked away for 15 years now," he said.

As well, the satellites were in the "hotbird" location for Australia and New Zealand.

"There are over a million dishes between Australia and New Zealand that are pointed to the Optus satellites ... those bits of real estate are very valuable and provide the growth path, as operators wish to increase their capacity in the future and bring more content rich and more interesting services to the market, they don't need to repoint their dishes," said Mr Hardy.

"The cost of the launch is commercially sensitive," said Mr Hardy.

He said the cost of launching the C series satellite last year was about $500 million to Optus, and the cost of that was shared with the military.

"There is a huge capital cost upfront and we then have to generate a return over the satellite's 15-year life," said Mr Hardy.

"We've looked very carefully at the business case for these. We are very confident that the existing demand combined with what we see as the future demand will generate an return on investment that is acceptable to our shareholders," he said.

After reporting its full year profits last week, Optus said that its capital expenditure in the next year would hit $1 billion and that one third of this would be spent on 3G infrastructure and the D-series satellites.

Optus said as well as taking the roll-over business from the B series of satellites the new D satellites offered more capacity.

The B series satellites had 15 transponders each and the new D series have 24, which are of a higher grade and have a higher output, the company said.

"B1 and B3 are substantially loaded up and we are continuing to sell capacity on B3 today, B1 is full and those satellites have an end of life in the next few years, so a fair chunk of capacity on the D series will be taken by this roll over," said Mr Hardy.

As part of the landmark agreement with Arianespace, which also launched the C1 satellite in June 2003, there would be an alternate back-up launch vehicle as part of the launch program, so if the first choice vehicle was not functioning for any reason, a secondary vehicle will be available.

Optus mulls home satellite

From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,9541081%255E15306,00.html

A RETAIL satellite broadband service would be a "natural extension" of the additional capacity provided by Optus' new D1 and D2 satellites, Optus wholesale and satellite managing director Warren Hardy said.

The new satellites take to the air in 2005 and 2007, replacing the capacity provided by the current B1 and B3 units, which are coming to the end of their working life.

The B1 satellite had already reached the limit of its capacity, Mr Hardy said.

However, with 24 transponders compared to the earlier generations' 15, the D-series satellites will also have additional capacity.

Space on the new satellites has already been sold to Foxtel and Sky TV New Zealand. The new satellites, which will last for about 15 years, will be positioned at the 160 degree and 156 degree "hotbird" geostationary orbit positions that already had more than 1 million antennas pointed at them across Australia and New Zealand, Mr Hardy said.

While most satellite revenue came from broadcasters, other services, such as extending the reach of broadband beyond the reach of wired networks, were also made possible by the new capacity, Mr Hardy said. Optus already sold satellite broadband to corporate and government customers, he said.

Asked if this could be extended to an retail satellite broadband service from Optus, Mr Hardy said such as service was "a possibility".

"It is a natural progression for us to go down that path," he said.

While saying it was "technically possible" for Optus to use the satellites to extend its pay TV reach beyond its cable network, Mr Hardy said any plans for a service were a "separate discussion".

Mr Hardy made his comments at the signing of the launch agreement for the D-series satellites with European rocket provider Arianespace. The agreement, signed in Sydney, will see Arianespace use the Ariane and Russian Soyuz rockets to place the Optus satellites in orbit.

The D2 launch will mark the first time the Soyuz rocket, which has been the cornerstone of the space programs of both Russia and the former Soviet Union since the 1950s, has been fired from the European Space Agency's facility in French Guiana.

Arianespace will also provide backup launch options to avoid delays caused by technical difficulties. Mr Hardy would not be drawn on the cost of the new satellites, but said that the existing C-series had cost the company around $500 million.

Optus would not speculate on when it would see a return on investment for the satellites. However the company and its parent Singtel needed to be satisfied that it would get and ROI comparable to other investments before committing to such a project, Optus networks managing director Bill Hope said.

Arianespace To Launch Aussie Satellite On First Soyuz From Europe's Kourou Spaceport

From http://www.spacedaily.com/news/ariane-04d.html

Australian telecommunications carrier Optus has chosen Arianespace to orbit its D1 and D2 satellites. The satellites will be delivered into orbit by Ariane and Soyuz launchers from the Guiana Space Centre in Kourou, French Guiana.

Optus D1 will be launched by an Ariane 5 launcher at the end of 2005, while Optus D2 will be launched by the first Soyuz to lift off from the Guiana Space Centre in 2007. Optus will also be the first customer to incorporate an alternate back-up launch vehicle as part of its launch programme.

This contract is a major landmark in Arianespace's strategy to offer comprehensive launch services solutions, using both Ariane and Soyuz in French Guiana, as well as the Launch Services Alliance that the company has established with Mitsubishi Heavy Industries and Boeing Launch Services.

Optus' selection of Arianespace follows two previous successful launches for the carrier. Optus & Defence C1 was launched by Arianespace in June 2003 and Optus' A3 in 1987. Separately, Optus' parent company SingTel chose Arianespace to launch its ST-1 satellite in 1998.

The selection of Arianespace by leading satcom operators and manufacturers in Australia, the U.S. and Singapore reflects international recognition of a top-flight launch service.

American satellite manufacturer Orbital Sciences Corporation will integrate the two spacecraft in Dulles, Virginia, using the Star-2 platform. Each satellite will weigh about 2,500 kg at launch. They will be positioned at 160 degrees East and 156 degrees East, respectively. Offering a design life of 15 years, the two Optus satellites will provide direct TV broadcast, Internet connection, telephony and data transmission services for Australia and New Zealand.

Optus D1 and D2 are the 252nd and 253rd contracts signed by Arianespace since its founding in March 1980. Arianespace currently has 35 confirmed satellite launch contracts.

AJC predicts new racing channel on pay TV by July

From http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/05/11/1084041411196.html

Australian Jockey Club chief executive Tony King expects Sydney racing to be available on pay television within two months and isn't concerned about the NSW Country Racing Council signing a long-term deal with Sky Channel.

As revealed in yesterday's Herald, the CRC signed a deal believed to be worth $3 million, up from the current $1 million contract, meaning Sky will broadcast NSW country racing well into the next decade.

"The Country Racing Council has done what they see as being best for themselves, so good luck to them," King said yesterday.

"We would have much rather had everyone [Sydney, provincial and country] together, but our negotiations with Victoria were never factoring in any involvement other than the city clubs, anyway."

CRC chief executive Brian Judd said it had been in discussions with Sky since its offer at the beginning of April and had been considering the AJC-STC position as well. The CRC had preferred to come to terms with an agreement providing significant benefits for country racing as opposed to waiting to determine what might eventuate with the AJC-STC.

King said the Sydney Racing channel, available on broadband internet and in pubs and clubs via satellite, was being expanded by the day.

"We are now getting calls from Queensland and South Australia from pubs wanting to put [satellite] dishes in so they can get the broadcast, and there have even been calls from TAB agents who want the signal," he said.

"And we should have our racing channel up and running on pay television in July or August, sooner if at all possible." ? The Racing NSW appeal panel has set aside a further three days to hear jockey Allan Robinson's appeal against his two-month suspension for improper conduct, which followed the telecasting of a documentary in which he directed lewd comments at then-apprentice Robyn Freeman.

At yesterday's opening of the appeal, Racing NSW stewards introduced new evidence - an unedited tape of the relevant footage - which was bitterly opposed by Robinson's legal representative, Chris Murphy. The hearing resumes on May 24.

Jim Cassidy's appeal against a six-week suspension for not giving Pentelikon every chance to win at Randwick on April 24 will be heard on May 20. ? The funeral service for former jockey Norm Munsie will be held at 10.30am on Friday at Our Lady of the Rosary Church, Kensington. In lieu of flowers, donations please to Careflight, PO Box 159, Westmead, NSW, 2154.

Thai Shin Satellite 1Q Net THB190.5Mln Vs THB352.7Mln

From http://sg.biz.yahoo.com/040511/15/3k5v2.html

Thailand's Shin Satellite PCL (SATTEL.TH) said Tuesday its net profit in the first quarter fell 46% from the same period last year due to a sharp increase in expenses ahead of the launch of its new satellite.

During January-March, Shin Satellite's net profit dropped to THB190.5 million, or THB0.44 a share, from THB352.7 million, or THB0.81 a share, a year ago.

Shin Satellite PCL - Bangkok
Figures in baht (THB)

1Q Ended March 31:

2004 2003

Net Profit THB190,507,000 THB352,704,000
Earnings per share 0.44 0.81

All figures are consolidated, unaudited and based on domestic accounting standards.

The figures are higher than analysts' expectations.

Capital Nomura Securities had expected Shin Satellite to post a net profit of THB143 million in the first quarter.

The drop in net profit came even though Shin Satellite saw a slight growth in revenue in the first quarter.

Many analysts had expected the company's first-quarter performance to be hit by the cancellation of a transponder leasing contract by one of its major clients, India's Department of Space, as of the end of 2003.

In the first quarter, Shin Satellite's total revenue rose to THB1.52 billion, up 6.3% from a year ago.

However, expenses jumped 26% to THB1.21 billion.

Analysts said the rise in expenses is due to costs of marketing and technical support ahead of the launch of its fourth satellite, iPSTAR, expected later this year.

Shin Satellite is a unit of Shin Corp. PCL (SHIN.TH), a conglomerate controlled by Prime Minister Thaksin Shinawatra's family.

Intelsat to buy Lockheed business

From http://baltimore.bizjournals.com/baltimore/stories/2004/05/10/daily14.html

Lockheed Martin, which has been selling commercial businesses to concentrate on government work, will sell its Comsat general business unit to Intelsat in a deal worth $90 million.

Under terms of the sale, Intelsat agrees to pay $90 million in cash, with an option for Intelsat to substitute up to $40 million in stock. Intelsat plans to go public this summer and priced its shares two months ago. It has not announced a date for its initial public offering.

Intelsat will also buy an Atlas launch vehicle from Lockheed Martin's commercial launch services division for the launch of a future satellite.

Lockheed's Comsat division sells satellite-based telecommunications services and equipment. As part of the acquisition, Intelsat will also get the Lockheed division's existing customers.

The Comsat unit is headquartered in Bethesda and employs about 30 people.

STMicroelectronics and SRS Labs Cooperate for Exclusive Worldwide Sales And Marketing of TruSurround XT(R) for Digital Set-Top Box Applications

From Press Release

SANTA ANA, Calif., May 11 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- SRS Labs, Inc. , a leading provider of innovative audio, voice and semiconductor technology solutions, today announced the availability of SRS Labs' virtual surround sound technology, TruSurround XT(R) ("TS XT"), for digital set-top boxes through the STi5100 chip solution from STMicroelectronics, the world's number one provider of chips for digital set-top boxes. Expanding upon existing licensing agreements between the companies, ST has now become the exclusive worldwide provider of TruSurround XT in a dedicated set top-box chip. The TS XT technology is bundled inside ST's solution, providing an easy and seamless integration of virtual surround by manufacturers of digital set top boxes.

"We are very excited to further our cooperation with ST, becoming the exclusive virtual surround sound technology on the number one selling set-top box semiconductor platform," said Lenka Koloma, director of strategic IC platform development for SRS Labs. "The exclusive bundling of TS XT on the STi5100 solution provides both ST and their OEM customers a powerful brand and attractive technology feature that creates significant product differentiation. Since our technology is included at the core ROM level and bundled into the complete set top box solution, no costly redesign or additional hardware or software is required by the OEM to implement it. ST customers around the world now have immediate access to our technology and can quickly deliver exceptional audio performance to their consumers."

ST is launching the new STi5100 platform before the ANGA Cable and MediaCast events in May. At these shows as well as over the coming quarters, SRS Labs and ST will work together to promote TruSurround XT to ST customers worldwide.

TruSurround XT is a universal virtual surround sound technology for home theater products. It creates a thrilling surround sound experience over two speakers from any stereo, two-channel encoded, as well as multichannel encoded material. Even though more and more programming is broadcast in surround sound, the vast majority of television, cable and satellite content is stereo. TruSurround XT is the ideal solution because it creates a thrilling surround sound experience over two speakers from either stereo or multichannel surround sound. It includes two proprietary technologies that further enhance the virtual surround sound experience. With SRS TruBass(R), which provides deep, rich bass from the small internal television speakers, and SRS Dialog Clarity(TM), which clarifies speech during passages that contain dynamic surround sound effects, TruSurround XT is the industry's most feature-rich virtual surround sound technology available.

"This new agreement represents another milestone in our relationship with SRS Labs," said Chris Carter, marketing manager of the Satellite and Terrestrial Business Unit of ST's Set Top Box Division. "By including TruSurround XT in the STi5100, we are giving our customers the opportunity to provide virtual surround sound technology in cost effective STBs. Consumers will benefit too, by being able to experience surround sound without the need to purchase additional equipment."

For information on the ST platform, contact Lenka Koloma at (949) 442-1070 Ext. 3020 or lenka@srslabs.com. Additional information is also available from the company's website at http://www.srslabs.com/.

About TruSurround and TruSurround XT

TruSurround is the established standard for the virtualization of 5.1 surround sound over two-speaker systems and has been featured in over 15 million consumer hardware products globally including products made by Hughes Network Systems, Matsushita, Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Philips, Pioneer, Sony, Thomson Consumer Electronics, and Toshiba Corporation. The next generation TruSurround XT that was released in November 2001 includes bass enhancement and dialog clarity technologies, which provide deeper bass tones and clarify speech during passages that contain dynamic surround sound effects. The TruSurround family of technologies delivers an immersive home-theater surround sound experience from multi-channel audio material over standard stereo speakers or headphones. TruSurround is applicable to DVD players, televisions, set-top boxes, video game consoles and AV surround sound receivers. To hear an online demonstration of TruSurround, visit http://www.srslabs.com/LicensingTechMultichannel.asp#TS.

About SRS Labs Inc.

SRS Labs is a recognized leader in the advancement of audio and voice technology. The company works with the world's top manufacturers to provide a richer entertainment experience through patented sound techniques. SRS Labs' technologies can be heard through products ranging from televisions, LCD and plasma monitors, DVD players, cell phones, car audio systems, headphones and notebook and desktop computers. The company also offers hardware and software tools to professionals and consumers for the creation, production and broadcast of content featuring SRS Labs' technologies. SRS Labs' wholly owned subsidiary, ValenceTech, is a Hong Kong-based semiconductor company that designs and sells custom ASICs and standard ICs to leading manufacturers worldwide. Based in Santa Ana, Calif., the company also has licensing representation in Hong Kong, Japan, Europe, and Korea. For more information about SRS Labs, Inc. please visit http://www.srslabs.com/. The information on the aforementioned website is not incorporated by reference into this press release.

Statements in this release, including those made by Ms. Koloma in paragraph two are forward-looking statements and projections (which include statements concerning plans and objectives of management for future operations) that are based on management's belief, as well as assumptions made by, and information currently available to, management. While the Company believes that its expectations are based upon reasonable assumptions, there can be no assurances that the Company's goals and strategy will be realized. Numerous factors (including risks and uncertainties) may affect the Company's actual results and may cause results to differ materially from those expressed in forward-looking statements made by or on behalf of the Company. Some of these factors include the general market conditions concerning semiconductor business, ST's continued status as a market leader for set-top box ICs, the impact of competitive products and pricing, the timely development and release of technologies by the Company, general business and economic conditions, especially in Asia, and other factors detailed in the Company's Form 10-K and other periodic reports filed with the SEC. SRS Labs specifically disclaims any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise.

For further information, please contact: Investors, Tami Yanito, ext. 3093, tami@srslabs.com, or Media, Jennifer Drescher, ext. 5010, jenniferd@srslabs.com, both of SRS Labs, Inc., +1-949-442-1070.

SRS Labs, Inc.

CONTACT: Investors, Tami Yanito, ext. 3093, tami@srslabs.com, or Media,Jennifer Drescher, ext. 5010, jenniferd@srslabs.com, both of SRS Labs, Inc.,+1-949-442-1070

Web site: http://www.srslabs.com/LicensingTechMultichannel.asp#TS./Web site: http://www.srslabs.com/


Live satellite chat tonight 9pm NZ and 8.30pm Syd time onwards.

CTN Test is back on B3

Issue of B1 12671V channel names, I worked out what they did they removed Property TV from the transponder. That fixed it for some reason.

May issue of Satmagazine is online at http://www.satmagazine.com

ABC Asia Pacific Net video stream! I don't think this is a "legit" stream done by the ABC...

BBC World Stream

From my Emails & ICQ

From Andrew Harrison

Hi Craig,

Thanks for the write up!!

I will send you my comments tomorrow.

It was a rather long and involved case and you need to understand some of the basic local politics. I am writing my version of what happened, you can edit it or post it on your site as you see fit.

It is basically the local pay tv operator trying to railroad my FTA business with lies. I have a lot of local support and continue to sell as before except in greater quantities because of the publicity.

My customers don't want monthly fees, FTA has it all - with the right equipment, and I am Vanuatu Government licenced to import and retail satellite equipment. Have been for 10 years.

Andrew Harrison.
SERVICOM (Vanuatu)
Video Ezy Port Vila, Santo and Tanna Islands.(All licenced)

From Steve Hume

Movement on Intelsat 804

Yesterday, I noticed a single carrier on Intelsat 804 on a 1.2m offset.

Today, I put a 1.6m Prime on it to pull it up a bit more. I ran the
Coship over it, and couldn't get a lock on any frequency. The Speccie
I have, doesn't give a frequency, only a graphical display of the

The carrier is very strong, even on a 1.2m offset. As strong as those on
C1. It looks to be in the low 12Ghz area on horizontal. Non DVB,
possibly data. (Craig seems to think possibly ipstar data test)

I checked the other pol, and there's nothing there.

NEWS 24x7
Steve Hume
North QLD

(Craigs comment, it should be possible to "find" whatever's there using a analog receiver at least it may stop on any strong "noise" this should let you narrow down the Freq. I do think it may be the Aus Ipstar test we have a similar signal on the NZ beam, at approx 12563V)

From Skip

Changes to the TVB8 mux on Asiasat3S

The TVB8 mux on Asiasat3S has left 4110H, SR11230.
New mux is now on Asiasat3S 4111H, SR13650, FEC 3/4. Four FTA channels load as follows:

TVB8 - Vpid1100, Apid1120
Xing He - Vpid 1210, Apid 1220
MATV - Vpid 1310, Apid 1320
i-Horizon - Vpid 1410, Apid 1420 (NEW!)

From JohnZ (NZ)

The new TVB mux has really poor signal here in Nz

From the Dish

PAS 8 166E 3995 V Occasional feeds on , SR 6620, FEC 3/4.

NSS 6 95E 12673 V "ABC Asia Pacific" has left .

Thaicom 3 78.5E 12396 H "TVT Channel 11 News 1" has started on , Fta, SR 26667, FEC 2/3,PIDs 512/650.

Telstar 10 76.5E 12706 V The TV Plus mux has left , moved to 12613 V.
Telstar 10 76.5E 12706 V "Z Channel, Gala TV Variety, Gala TV Comprehensive, Gala TV Drama, SET Taiwan,SET Metro and SET News" have started on , Fta, SR 21600, FEC 3/4, PIDs 1060/1061-1120/1121.


Canberra takes TV licence control

From http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,9525962%255E7582,00.html

THE federal Government has unleashed the prickly issue of whether to issue a fourth commercial free-to-air TV licence after yesterday releasing details of its free-to-air digital TV reviews.

In a surprise move, Communications Minister Daryl Williams also said the Government would strip the Australian Broadcasting Authority of its power to issue new TV licences.

The existing laws allow the ABA to issue a new TV licence in January 2007, but that power will now revert to the Government.

The prospect of another TV network comes as the radio sector battles new competition from the release of several FM radio licences, the TV sector benefits from the continuing strength of the TV advertising market and the federal election looms.

Free-to-air digital TV launched in 2000 but only 322,000 homes have converted to the new technology. Pay-TV group Foxtel launched its digital service mid-March and has sold 218,000 digital subscriptions.

The Government is required by its own digital TV legislation to review numerous aspects of the free-to-air digital TV laws to ensure the system is working. Mr Williams said those issues, which must be completed before the end of this year, would be grouped into four "thematic reviews".

But Mr Williams' spokesperson said that, while the public could make submissions to the reviews, there would be no public discussion of the issues.

The first review will consider if the free-to-air TV networks should be able to offer extra channels - or multi-channels - on their digital TV signals, and if, in future, they could become pay-TV channels.

That suggestion is expected to be opposed by pay-TV groups such as Foxtel and Austar, while the Seven Network is the only commercial free-to-air network that wants to multi-channel.

"We believe a regulatory approach that allowed for multi-channelling using existing free-TV infrastructure would go someway to providing competition against a monopoly in pay-TV," a Seven spokesman said.

Mr Williams said the first review would also help determine how the Government should regain the power to issue TV licences.

The second review will revisit the issue of datacasting - the failed digital TV service promoted as a hybrid between text and TV pictures.

Mr Williams said the review would consider if those datacasting licences should be converted "to other broadcasting types".

The third review will consider if TV spectrum has been allocated efficiently and the final review will look at digital TV services being provided to isolated regional areas.

Opposition communications spokesperson Lindsay Tanner did not oppose the Government move and said Labor had yet to decide if it supported the release of a fourth commercial TV licence.

KMS/FalconStream and NewSat Introduce Internet Hub For Broadband Across Middle East

From http://www.spacedaily.com/news/internet-04zy.html

New Skies Satellites and KMS/FalconStream announced Thursday a new two-way satellite IP hub for the Middle East, which will access New Skies' NSS-6 satellite. The hub will be provided by Australian satellite broadband specialist, NewSat.

FalconStream has also signed for additional capacity on NSS-6 to offer expanded and more advanced broadband Internet access services through the new two-way hub to small offices, corporate enterprises and consumer households throughout the Middle East, the Indian Subcontinent and North Africa.

The new hub will employ DVB-RCS technology and NSS-6's high-powered Ku-band capacity to enable high-speed, two-way IP transmissions between customer sites and the hub at speeds up to 1.15 Mbps on the uplink and 60 Mbps down, resulting in service15 to 20 times faster than traditional broadband access technologies.

The two-way DVB-RCS technology bypasses the need for expensive infrastructure and significantly expands the potential service area to include virtually any location with the satellite's footprint.

Mr. Ahmed Mekky, KMS/FalconStream's vice president, said: "The new two-way hub will incorporate the latest technology to serve as a catalyst for the development and expansion of high-speed broadband access for small offices/home offices, small and medium sized enterprises and consumers throughout the Middle East as well as North Africa and the Indian Subcontinent.

"Through the combination of New Skies' advanced resources and position as the leading global provider of satellite-delivered IP services; NewSat's advanced broadband technology; and our distribution channels and knowledge of the regional market, we are confident not only in the success of the service but its contribution to the continuing development of this rapidly growing region of the world."

Hussein Oteifa, New Skies' senior director of sales for the Middle East, said: "The Middle East is growing faster than the existing communications infrastructure can support. Businesses require access to reliable communications services that use state-of-the-art, proven technology to compete regionally and globally. Our strategic collaboration with FalconStream and NewSat will go a long way to quickly and efficiently extending a modern IT infrastructure throughout the entire Middle East."

Traditional one-way satellite services require remote customer sites to be connected via terrestrial wireless technology to a central Point of Presence (PoP), which in turn accesses the Internet backbone using satellite.

This configuration, while still extending the web to locations not adequately served by fiber optic networks, limits the number of sites and their distance from an Internet service provider's central PoP.

Using new two-way technology, ISPs and carriers can connect individual sites directly to the hub via satellite regardless of their location within NSS-6's footprint, enabling extremely remote, highly mobile and cost-effective broadband Internet access.

FalconStream initially signed a long-term multi-transponder, multi-satellite agreement with New Skies to offer one-way high-speed Internet access services to more than 2,000 customer sites in May 2003.

KL satellite TV set to offer 100 new channels

From http://straitstimes.asia1.com.sg/asia/story/0,4386,250294,00.html

Malaysian viewers spoilt for choice as government grants more broadcast licences, among them video-on-demand and digital

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's satellite television operator Astro will offer more than 100 new channels by next year, making a packed Malaysian television market even more crowded.

There are already six free-to-air television channels, and there are still plans for more stations, according to the country's television regulator.

Government broadcaster RTM operates two channels as does private station TV3, while NTV7 and Channel Nine are the other two stations.

Broadcast licences have been issued to two other companies - Fine TV and MiTV - but these two companies have not announced when they will roll out services.

Fine TV is planning to offer video-on-demand over broadband cable while MiTV is planning a digital service.

'The government believes in self-regulation for the industry and to let market forces dictate the viability of having so many channels, as long as nothing immoral or obscene is shown,' a Malaysian Multimedia Commission official told The Straits Times.

Astro, which started operating subscription-based satellite television services six years ago, already offers more than 50 television and radio channels.

'Another significant highlight we expect to deliver next year is Astro's capacity to provide a previously unimaginable 100 plus new channels,' the company said in a newsletter this month.

Its ability to offer more channels is a result of next year's launch of its third satellite, Measat 3. But it has not released any details of what kind of programming it is planning.

It already broadcasts popular channels such as HBO and ESPN as well as a host of popular Chinese programmes.

With its new capacity, the operator will also soon be made available to Indonesia, Bangladesh, Thailand and India.

Astro now has a subscriber base in Malaysia of more than 1.39 million and has a market share of 20 per cent of all television viewers, the second highest of all stations in Malaysia.

It is creeping up on market leader and terrestrial station TV3, which depends solely on advertising for its revenue. It has a 34-per-cent market share.

Stations such as TV3 and NTV7 have become more competitive in their programming, and are offering more Chinese programmes to attract the lucrative Chinese buying power.

The battle for television viewers is heating up just as the industry expects advertising expenditure for the industry to increase this year.

Advertisers spent more than RM4 billion (S$1.81 billion) on advertisements last year but the lion's share went to newspapers and magazines, with television getting just over RM1 billion.

'Advertising for television is expected to rise further, especially with the industry getting more competitive,' said advertising media executive C.C. Tan.

Astro's rapid expansion does not come at a huge cost to terrestrial stations because the bulk of the satellite station's income comes from subscriptions.

The station collects more than RM1 billion a year from its subscribers and has paid advertisements on only a limited number of channels.

Measat to explore Indian space for buyers

From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/668737.cms

AHMEDABAD: One of the world’s top satellite operators, Measat, is entering the Indian space to scout for potential buyers of satellite capacity in the entertainment arena. Measat is also proposing to market capacity available on the Insat platform, satellites launched by the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro), government sources told ET. According to the sources, Measat is planning to set up its own subsidiary in the country as television transmission takes a leap towards direct-to-home (DTH) technology.

The Malaysian firm has approached the government with a proposal to bring in foreign funds. The proposal is likely to be discussed by a group of secretaries shortly. Clearances from the department of space, and the ministries of information and broadcasting, and defence are also required, the sources added.

A government official said the investment in the subsidiary will brought in through Measat International (South Asia) Ltd, an investment company based in Mauritius. The subsidiary will, apart from marketing satellite capacity as available on Measat and Insat platforms, also act as sales, advertising and marketing agents for selling other value added services and will provide technical consultancy services. Details of the other value added services could not be ascertained.

BSS’ new satellite, Measat-3, will be co-located with Measat-1 at the orbital slot of 91.5 degrees east longitude. The new satellite will consist of 24 C-band and 24 Ku-band transponder and have an extensive footprint over Africa, Europe, West Asia and Asia-Pacific region. Its Ku-band payload will comprise of high-powered switchable spot-beams over India, Malaysia and China that provides Indian broadcasters the opportunity to use Measat transponder to beam its channels across the country.

The Measat system can provide digital video and audio broadcasting, international and domestic VSAT and telecommunication services as well as high-speed internet access. Measat also represents a technology breakthrough with its pioneering direct-to-user (DTU) system transmitted via its advanced high-powered Ku-band transponders specifically designed to cut through the Asian region’s heavy tropical rainfall, according to the website. India’s fast-growing communications, entertainment and information industries will create high demand for satellite capacity.

STMicroelectronics Enables the Market for User-Upgradeable Set-Top Boxes and Digital Video Recorders

From http://www.linuxelectrons.com/article.php/20040510094343798

GENEVA, May 10 -- STMicroelectronics (NYSE:STM) , the world's largest supplier of silicon chips for set-top boxes (STBs)(1), has announced a new high-performance, secure MPEG-2 decoder intended for STBs in all low-cost cable, satellite, and terrestrial TV markets. The new STi5100 integrated circuit will allow peripherals to be easily added to a low-cost STB in order to provide additional features and capabilities. In particular, the STi5100 allows consumers to purchase the STB and, at a later date, attach a hard disk drive to add Digital Video Recorder (DVR) capabilities.

Although some earlier decoders have included a USB interface, it is only the availability within the STi5100 of the 40-times-faster Hi-Speed USB standard -- operating at 480 Mbit/second -- that opens up the real opportunity to add fast peripherals such as disk drives.

Digital video recording is beginning to grow significantly, as viewers increasingly use it for 'timeshifting' while preserving video quality, and this new decoder will enable STB manufacturers to offer consumers a low-cost upgrade path. Other peripherals that could be connected to a set-top box through the USB interface, using suitable drivers, include digital cameras, printers, and memory cards.

"By including Hi-Speed USB in the STi5100, not only are we giving consumers the ability to upgrade their set-top box to have DVR capability, but also to transfer images, movies, and music to their box, through an industry- standard interface," said Christos Lagomichos, General Manager of ST's Set Top Box Division. "Furthermore, set-top box manufacturers have the ability to provide additional applications to customers following the sale of the original box, delivered on USB drives."

The STi5100 is the first dedicated STB device to include TruSurround XT, an advanced audio technology from SRS Labs Inc. This technology creates cinema quality, virtual surround sound over any two-speaker television or entertainment system. It also includes SRS TruBass and SRS Dialog Clarity, features which deliver rich bass enhancement and improved dialog intelligibility in audio passages where dialog competes with music or other audio.

The STi5100 contains a 243MHz version of ST's ST20, the most popular embedded CPU in the STB market. It is the fastest version yet, and can easily run all of today's high-performance STB software with power to spare for future software enhancements. A unified memory interface, with Double Data Rate (DDR) SDRAM support, optimizes the use of RAM chips and further increases performance, while an embedded high-performance graphics engine supports graphics-intensive tasks such as the channel's presentation of programs, and 2-D games. An innovative system for flexible routing of both Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) and DIRECTV video streams from different sources simplifies transport-stream management software and improves reliability.

The decoder also integrates a market leading system-side Direct Access Arrangement (DAA) technology from Silicon Laboratories Inc. The DAA is compatible with worldwide PTT standards using a single layout, further minimizing system and manufacturing costs for STB manufacturers.

Full software development support is provided by evaluation boards and complete STAPI software (ST's Application Programming Interface) with optional v.22bis modem and a complete High-Speed USB software stack.. The STi5100 decoder is available in a low-cost 27x27 PBGA package, with pin-out to allow a two-layer PCB design. For applications not needing the peripheral expansion capability, the STi51501 is also available to the same specification but without the USB interface.

Samples of the STi5100 are available now with production volumes scheduled for availability in Q3 2004. The STi5100 is priced at $12 when purchased in large quantities.

Indigenous cryogenic engine ready: ISRO chief

From http://www.webindia123.com/news/showdetails.asp?id=37799&cat=India

India's indigenous cryogenic engine is fully qualified and is being developed further, a top official said on Monday. G. Madhavan Nair, head of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), also said that space powers, including the US, are willing to partner ISRO's proposed moon mission (Chandrayaan-I).

"The progress (of the moon mission) is going on well. We have started the experiments. We have proposals from Europe, USA, and Canada. The (cryogenic) engine has been fully qualified, now we are in the process of developing it further," said Nair.

Cryogenics is the science of keeping propellants as liquids in the extreme cold of space.

The impetus to create the indigenously built cryogenic engine came with the 1998 nuclear tests.

The consequent economic sanctions and international pressure led Russia to back out of the supply of cryogenic engines to India. Though an initial setback, the sanctions proved to be a blessing as it forced Indian scientists to develop indigenous technology. Nair also said that ISRO was currently building fourth generation sattelite and first of the INSAT-4 series-INSAT-4A and INSAT-4B. "Fourth generation spacecraft is being built, we hope by the end of this year, we should be able to have the 4A and by second half of next, we should have the 4B also," he added.

Nair was speaking on the sidelines of the lauch of the "Vigyan Rail", or "science exhibition on wheels".

ISRO plans to launch Edusat, a spacecraft dedicated for education purposes, on board a Geo-Synchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) in early August.

Also scheduled for launch this year is a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle.(ANI)


CTN Cambodia test on B3 has gone off

Apsattv site was down on Sunday due to a server problem.

Something odd?

My Nokia's now listing all the channel names on B1 12671 V Sky transponder it's not done this for the last 6 months. So something they have done at their end has changed.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Advisor in Vanuatu

Vanuatu has had a local expat charged and convicted for selling satellite equipment illegally and also selling
pirated cards for Australian channels and Foxtel.

(Craigs comment, some searchng in google news came up with these details from Jan 21st. The name will be familiar to those on my mailing list. Perhaps Andrew would like to comment?)

"Video Ezzy shop owner to surrender passport - on bail"

The owner of Video Ezzy, Mr Andrew Harrison was summoned by the Chief Justice to appear before the Magistrate Court on Thursday afternoon, following two allegations of breaches to Sn1 (A 1) and 1 (A 4) of the Business Licence Act.

Satellite equipment, decoders and wires were consficated by the Vanuatu Police Force last week, following claims that the Australian citizen has been operating a satellite business without obtaining proper licences.

The Chief Executive Officer of Police, Inspector George Namaka, informed The Independent that police proceeded with search warrants following complaints from VBTC compliance personnel as well as various satellite business owners around the capital that the accused has breached certain provisions of the VBTC Act.

However, the lawyer representing the defendant, Mr Nigel Morrison (Ridgway Blake, Lawyers) told The Independent his client "is not a provider of satellite dishes, he is a seller. Therefore, his business does not go in line with satellite businesses such as LBF and Telstat, as he only sells satellite dishes and does not provide program delivery services to customers."

In court, Mr Nigel Morrison was prepared to proceed with the hearing, announcing that his client pleads not guilty to both charges. However, the police prosecutor said " the case is quite technical and may therefore require more time for investigations."

The magistrate ordered the case be adjourned to 29 January and the satellite dish vendor will be out on bail. He must surrender his passport and all travel documents to the prosecution immediately. He is not permitted to leave the country, nor interfere with police witnesses.

From ME

B1 12367V sr 6666 fec 3/4
Rally car highlights seen Sunday

B3 12553V Sr 6670 "Big brother" encrypted feed

From Billo

C1 12720V was FTA on the weekend

From the Dish

Lyngsats on a 2 day break

Weekly SatcoDX News 30 April 2004 - 07 May 2004

EXPRESS-AM22 (53.0E)
Feeds (M1PLUS1) on 11.089 (V,3750,6131,49,6131): Added PIDs, SID, TID & NID

INSAT 3E (55.0E)

Feeds (Master Conrol Facility Hassan) on 3.900 (H,2250,4194,4195,4194): It Has Started

INTELSAT 904 (60.0E)

Feeds on 10.957 (V,3657): It has started

For Private and Personal Use Only - Commercial Use Not Allowed

INTELSAT 906 (64.0E)

Star Radio on 11.478 (H,2200,66): It has started

PANAMSAT 7, 10 (68.5E)

Data service on 3.730 (H,26470)
TBN Africa on 3.743 (V,20600,1635,1635,1636): It has Started
TBN Africa on 3.743 (V,20600,1635,1635,1636): It is encrypted Now


NTD TV on 11.356 (V,4000,1331,1332,1331): Moved from 11.325V; New PIDs, SID, NID & TID

PANAMSAT 4 (72.0E)

Puglia Channel on 12.670 (V,3995,100,101,100): New SR

INSAT 3C (74.0E)

Sahara Samay on 3.781 (V,2000,308,257,8190): It Has Started
DD News on 3.756 (H,14063,512,650,8190): It has replaced DD Metro


TDC-Korea (NTSC) on 3.880 (H,28125,2360,2320,2360)
AXN Taiwan on 3.920 (H,28340,1160,1120,1160)
AXN Rest of Asia on 3.920 (H,28340,1260,1220,1260)
AXN Philippines on 3.920 (H,28340,1360,1320,1360)
AXN East Asia 2 on 3.920 (H,28340,1560,1520,1560)
Animax Taiwan on 3.920 (H,28340,710,700,710)
Animax Sout East Asia on 3.920 (H,28340,810,800,810)
SEA Business IRD on 3.920 (H,28340,810,802,810)
Animax Sout East AsiaCUE C_D on 3.920 (H,28340,810,806,810)
Animax Philippines on 3.920 (H,28340,910,900,910)
Animax Philippines Business IRD on 3.920 (H,28340,910,902,910)
Animax Hong Kong on 3.920 (H,28340,1010,1000,1010)
Channel 10_A56 on 3.920 (H,28340,1010,1004,1010)
AXN Taiwan on 3.920 (H,28340,1160,1120,1160)
Test101 on 3.920 (H,28340,1160,1120,1160)
AXN Rest of Asia on 3.920 (H,28340,1260,1220,1260)
EA Business IRD on 3.920 (H,28340,1260,1222,1260)
AXN Rest of AsiaCUE C_D on 3.920 (H,28340,1260,1226,1260)
AXN Philippines on 3.920 (H,28340,1360,1320,1360)
Philippines Business IRD on 3.920 (H,28340,1360,1322,1360)
AXN India Audio Reversed on 3.920 (H,28340,1460,1420,1460)
AXN South Asia on 3.920 (H,28340,1460,1422,1460)
AXN East Asia 2 on 3.920 (H,28340,1560,1520,1560)

INSAT 2E, 3B (83.0E)

Test card on 3.525 (V,24800,401,402,401): It has Started
Feeds (Hyderabad News ) on 3.920 (V,6250,513,660,129): It Has Started


Feed on 3.848 (V,5632,308,256,8190): It's encrypted now
CCTV 1 on 12.475 (H,6250): It has replaced Feeds
Feeds on 3.892 (V,5000,308,256,8190): It has started

ST 1 (88.0E)

Schoolar Movie Channel on 3.632 (V,26666,1057,1058,1057): It's encrypted now
FTV News on 3.632 (V,26666,2609,2593,2609): It's encrypted now
Public TV Service on 3.632 (V,26666,6193,6177,6193): It's encrypted now

YAMAL 102, 201 (90.0E)

Ren TV on 3.575 (L,4355,308,256,8190): It has replaced Tyumen Time

MEASAT 1 (91.5E)

CCTV-9 on 10.982 (V,30000,172,181,172): It has started
astro Shuang Xing on 11.044 (V,30000,172,128,172): Combined
astro info card on 11.044 (V,30000,173,132,173): It has replaced astro Shuang Xing 1

INSAT 3A (93.5E)

ZEE NEWS on 11.510 (H,27500,163,90,163): Tele-Text has Started

ASIASAT 3S (105.5E)

Trace TV on 3.670 (V,13333,2081,2082,2081): It has started
Guangxi TV on 3.806 (V,4420,255,256,255): New SID/NID/TID
Data service only on 3.886 (V,4800,1215,1215)
DragonTV on 3.886 (V,4800,1110,1211,1110)
Video and Audio Service on 3.886 (V,4800,1110,1213,1110)
Audio and Data Service on 3.886 (V,4800,1214,1214)
Video and VBI Service on 3.886 (V,4800,1110,1211,1110)

TELKOM 1 (108.0E)

TV7 on 4.095 (H,6000,308,256,8190): It's encrypted now
TV7 on 4.095 (H,6000,308,256,8190)

WORLDSAT-1 (108.2E)

Human on 12.411 (V,11110,4245,4246,4245): It's clear now
CMC TV on 12.411 (V,11110,4370,4371,4369): It's clear now

PALAPA C2 (113.0E)

Asialink Feed 0215455123 on 3.765 (H,5632,308,256,8190)
SBN Finance Channel on 11.472 (V,15555,2101,2102,2101): It's encrypted now
Sun TV on 11.132 (V,26667,52,53,52): It has replaced PTS

KOREASAT 2 (113.0E)

FSTV on 12.701 (H,3000,4294,4295,4294): SID/TID/NID added

KOREASAT 3 (116.0E)

WED-NEWS on 12.550 (V,26000,1960,1920,1960): It's encrypted now

JCSAT 3 (128.0E)

Data Service on 4.085 (H,5000): It has started
The University of the Air on 12.268 (V,21096,2064,2068,385)
Green Channel on 12.268 (V,21096,2080,2084)
Yozemi TV Net on 12.268 (V,21096,2096,2100,387)
Kit Manzox Club on 12.268 (V,21096,2112,2116)
TVE International Asia-Africa on 12.268 (V,21096,2128,2132)
The University of the Air Radio on 12.268 (V,21096,2212)
Perfect Choice on 12.348 (V,21096,2080,2084)
J Sky Sport 1 on 12.348 (V,21096,2112,2116)
J Sky Sport 2 on 12.348 (V,21096,2128,2132)
J Sky Sport 3 on 12.348 (V,21096,2144,2148)
Gaora on 12.368 (H,21096,2064,2068)
Enjoy TV on 12.368 (H,21096,2080,2084)
Music Japan TV on 12.368 (H,21096,2096,2100)
Flamingo on 12.368 (H,21096,2112,2116)
Blue Cherry Bomb on 12.368 (H,21096,2128,2132)
Milk 906 on 12.368 (H,21096,2144,2148)
Supper Channel on 12.408 (H,21096,2064,2068)
Family Gekijyo on 12.408 (H,21096,2080,2084)
Star Channel on 12.408 (H,21096,2096,2100)
Playboy Channel on 12.408 (H,21096,2112,2116)
Perfect Choice on 12.408 (H,21096,2128,2132)
Channel Ruby on 12.408 (H,21096,2144,2148)
Perfect Choice on 12.428 (V,21096,2064,2068)
Perfect Choice on 12.428 (V,21096,2080,2084)
Kojima Shopping World on 12.428 (V,21096,2112,2116,387)
Perfect Choice on 12.428 (V,21096,2128,2132)
Perfect Choice on 12.428 (V,21096,2160,2164)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2064,2068)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2080,2084)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2096,2100)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2112,2116)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2128,2132)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2144,2148)
Perfect Choice on 12.508 (V,21096,2160,2164)
Speed Channel 3 on 12.508 (V,21096,2208,2212)
Japan Leisure Channel 3 on 12.508 (V,21096,2224,2228)
Japan Leisure Channel 4 on 12.508 (V,21096,2240,2244)
Japan Leisure Channel 5 on 12.508 (V,21096,2256,2260)
Victory Channel on 12.523 (H,21096,2064,2086,385): Car Channel has renamed into Victory Channel
Sky A on 12.523 (H,21096,2080,2084)
Splash on 12.523 (H,21096,2096,2100)
Access! on 12.523 (H,21096,2112,2116)
Global Learning Channel on 12.523 (H,21096,2128,2132)
Travelers Channel on 12.523 (H,21096,2144,2148)
Tabi Channel on 12.538 (V,21096,2064,2086)
Nickelodeon Japan on 12.538 (V,21096,2080,2084)

AGILA 2 (146.0E)

Comelec on 12.301 (H,25600,160,80,160)
ABS CBN on 12.301 (H,25600,161,84,161)
NBN 4 on 12.301 (H,25600,162,88,161)
ABC 5 on 12.301 (H,25600,163,92,161)
GMA 7 on 12.301 (H,25600,164,96,161)
RPN 9 on 12.301 (H,25600,165,100,161)
EWTN on 12.301 (H,25600,166,104,161)
IBC 13 on 12.301 (H,25600,167,108,161)
Formosa TV on 12.301 (H,25600,168,112,161)
Dream theater on 12.301 (H,25600,169,116,161)
Planet Rock on 12.301 (H,25600,280,280)
Retro heaven on 12.301 (H,25600,281,281)
Jazz house on 12.301 (H,25600,282,282)
DWTN FM on 12.301 (H,25600,283,283)
Dream Classical on 12.301 (H,25600,284,284)
VOA Mix on 12.301 (H,25600,285,285)
I FM on 12.301 (H,25600,286,286)
DZRJ FM on 12.301 (H,25600,287,287)
DWNU FM on 12.301 (H,25600,288,288)
RMN News FM on 12.301 (H,25600,289,289)
PBO on 12.541 (H,25600,170,120,170): It has replaced Fashion TV
Living Asia on 12.581 (H,25600,165,100,165): It has replaced Isla TV / Juice
CCP@Dream on 12.581 (H,25600,171,124,171)
JCTV on 12.581 (H,25600,172,128,172)
eTV on 12.661 (H,25600,163,92,163)
4 UTV on 12.661 (H,25600,167,108,167): It has replaced Channel [V]
Animax on 12.661 (H,25600,169,116,169): It has replaced CNN finance
Data Service on 3.660 (H,15000): New NID

PANAMSAT 8 (166.0E)

CNN Hong Kong Feeds on 3.812 (H,10850,255,256,254): New NID
Feeds on 3.836 (V,22000,166,104,166): It has replaced TVBS Newsnet USA
Pili Satellite TV on 3.860 (H,28000,470,471,471): It's clear now

PANAMSAT 2 (169.0E)

Radio Service 1 on 4.040 (H,5900,1122,1160)
Radio Service 2 on 4.040 (H,5900,1130,1160)
LifeTalk Radio Network on 4.040 (H,5900,1132,1132): It has started

INTELSAT 802 (174.0E)

The Pentagon Channel on 11.638 (H,28000,1860,1820,1860): It has started


Sky's the limit for TV

From http://www.nzherald.co.nz/storydisplay.cfm?storyID=3565216&thesection=news&thesubsection=general

This is an update on the story of Chicken Licken - you know, the silly fowl who had an acorn fall on its head and thought the sky was falling. In this version the barmy bird has been staring at the sun too long and is convinced the sky is full ... of television. Problem is, in this case, the chicken is right.

At this juncture reader discretion is advised. This is a tale of greed, of a TVNZ chief executive behaving badly, of bizarre property rights in the ether, and of imprisoned tino rangatiratanga.

It is David Beatson who is rushing around with his friends at Mai TV saying "the sky is full". Actually, what they're saying is that TVNZ (the cunning Fox-lox who in the original story ate them all) is being beastly. Beastly because TVNZ has a rare commodity - a piece of virgin sky - which it won't let Mai Media lease or buy for its Auckland TV channel.

"We are really bloody annoyed with them," said Mai Media managing director Graham Pryor after two years of negotiations broke down. TVNZ's chief executive Ian Fraser reportedly responded with a considered: "I don't give a bugger ... Who cares?"

Contemplating the vastness of the sky, it's hard to believe there's no place in the heavens for Mai. But Brian Miller, who is the chief carver of the sky as manager of the Radio Spectrum Policy and Planning division of the Ministry of Economic Development, says there are no air waves left to slice.

"UHF [ultra high frequency] allocated to date has all been purchased and we certainly do not have any spares in Auckland."

UHF is the signal one gets with those spiky aerials for free-to-air channels such as Prime, Triangle, Juice, Maori TV and some Sky TV channels. About 800,000 of the estimated 1.36 million television homes have UHF aerials which are different from the old-fashioned aerials that receive the very high frequencies (VHF) transmitted by the major networks.

Regardless of who can receive what, unless Mai can find some clear air, its transmissions are going nowhere - meaning Aucklanders miss out on having their own regional channel.

But don't we already have a regional channel in Triangle? Not according to David Beatson, who with television veterans Robert Boyd-Bell, and Murray Roberts are partners in the Auckland-only channel.

"Triangle is not what would I would call Auckland local TV. It is access TV in which people pay to have local programmes played."

Mai TV is part of the Mai Media group of companies, owned by Runanga Ngati Whatua, and which, in 1996, launched the wildly successful Mai FM radio station. Its proposal is for a commercial channel as opposed to the not-for-profit Triangle, which uses UHF frequencies given to it by the Ministry for Culture and Heritage.

But while Mai TV would appear to meet some of the Government's broadcasting objectives, Beatson says the company never needed New Zealand on Air or other Government money.

"We predicated our case simply on being a self-sufficient commercial channel that would finance its production out of its advertising revenue."

Which is probably why TVNZ suddenly got out of bed with Mai - it was worried Mai would plunder its advertising market.

TVNZ chief executive Ian Fraser refused to discuss the matter, saying through a PR woman he was "not predisposed" to talk to the Herald because it has been "having a real go at TVNZ lately".

We tried to talk to Minister of Broadcasting Steve Maharey, but he, too, ducked for cover, saying through a PR adviser it was a matter for TVNZ. Sigh.

TVNZ's antics raise political questions. Is its thwarting of Mai's TV plans anticompetitive behaviour under the Commerce Act or just hard-nosed business acumen? The stoush also shows up failings in the competitive market allocation scheme for broadcasting spectrum. And TVNZ's stance flies in the face of broadcasting policy that promotes Maori language and community TV.

Fraser has given some dubious reasons for hoarding the Auckland channel once used to broadcast Max TV, such as needing it for testing digital terrestrial TV. He is also running a smokescreen - plans for a "New Zealand content channel" involving a mix of re-runs of current affairs, local shows, minority programmes and live broadcasts from Parliament.

But that scheme, referred to as a charter burial ground, and a way to head off Sky's proposal for a Parliament channel, has nothing to do with the frequency Mai wants. The "New Zealand channel" will employ another set of frequencies that TVNZ is also sitting on, those used by the defunct Horizon Pacific TV.

In a letter to the editor, Fraser said Mai's "business propositions had quite properly not been welcomed by TVNZ".

Elsewhere he was reported as saying the original Mai proposal was for an Auckland regional channel, but that changed mid-negotiation into a youth channel which would be in direct competition with Maori Television. "It didn't make sense from TVNZ's perspective."

It doesn't make sense to Mai's Graham Pryor either, who says the Mai brand and going after a similar youth demographic was always in the plan, which is why TVNZ wanted the joint venture.

"If Mai TV ends up looking anything like Maori TV it wouldn't work commercially. We would be much closer competition to Juice and C4 than anybody else. What I've gleaned from this whole episode is that maybe we underestimated what sort of threat we were to TVNZ ."

Beatson agrees the joint venture always had hurdles. "It was difficult for them [TVNZ] to get their head around what kind of cost structure a local TV station could run at compared to a network, and it was equally difficult for them to see how local television can recruit advertising the networks cannot access."

He says Mai TV has backers lined up with the $12 million it needs to launch and has shown its funding model to TVNZ.

"We can see it breaking even in about 18 months, and having covered its capital and operating in positive profits from about three years out."

Beatson says Auckland is missing out on TV news of importance to Aucklanders - stories that don't make the cut on nationwide news. Mai TV would also feature local music, be "very event-focused" and go large on weather - because it has a big effect on what "outdoor-focused" Aucklanders do.

Club and high-school sport, game shows and "spontaneous, ad lib, theatre sports" drama add to the mix. The channel also wants to tap the talent pool in college, university and polytech media classes.

Triangle's head, Jim Blackman, is sceptical: "The road to regional and niche television is strewn with skeletons along the way - Horizon Pacific, the Telecom cable trial, Max TV, Aotearoa TV. It's not the easiest row to hoe in the best of situations and I suspect Mai TV, no matter how successful they've been in radio, will find the same."

Whether or not the business plan is convincing, Mai may as well be floating in outer space if it doesn't have a broadcast frequency. The ministry says Mai should negotiate with other spectrum owners, but as most of the air waves are already in use and the unused bits are stashed away by TVNZ, there's no one to negotiate with.

Perhaps Maori - reserved UHF frequencies by the government since 1989 - could help. Unfortunately no, because even though Maori gained ownership under law of nationwide UHF frequencies, it isn't using them. What's more - against the ministry's advice - Maori TV signed a deal with Sky which ensures the frequencies will remain unused for 10 years. As one radio frequency engineer put it, "what a waste".

Why would Maori lock up such hard-won sovereignty - tino rangatiratanga - of spectrum so easily? When the Herald calls, Hone Harawira, chairman of Te Putahi Paoho the Maori Television Electoral College, is too focused on another tino rangatiratanga battle - for the foreshore and seabed - to explain.

The answer however seems to be expediency - to get Maori TV to air quickly. And to sideline the interference problem of Sky set top boxes and video recorders squatting on assigned Maori UHF channels. Interference that could have been removed by retuning Sky boxes and VCRs in the way they talk to TVs, or by using audio/video (Scart) leads to connect box and TV.

"We came up with a nationwide plan that caused minimum interference to Sky and Maori," says John Gibbs, strategic technologies general manager of state-owned transmission company BCL.

But the plan involved considerable expense for Sky in sending out staff to retune its boxes, not to mention the customer dissatisfaction that would have ensued. Hence the deal to transmit Maori TV on a Sky UHF frequency previously used for CNN news, and to send Maori spectrum into limbo.

Sky's director of communications, Tony O'Brien, describes the deal as a win-win. "It gave Maori a fully operational network with no capital required, with more than 100,000 homes pre-tuned. Sky was happy, and it was a quick way to come to market."

So yet another piece of scarce resource lies dormant. Is this a sign the Ministry of Economic Development's spectrum policy isn't working? Associate minister of communications David Cunliffe thinks not.

"The Government has been comfortable with spectrum allocation in general." But he acknowledges "if there are problems emerging then it would be natural for policy to be reviewed in the light of new issues".

There is, however, no acknowledgement the regime is what is really responsible for the shortage. That carving up the immense sky as though it was farm paddocks is the epitome of chicken licken logic. In truth spectrum isn't a scarce resource - or even anything at all.

Radio and TV waves don't collide in mid-air. And interference only happens at the receiver end - generally because receivers are rather retarded pieces of technology. Yes, there is an alternative. But as Stanford University professor of law Lawrence Lessig points out, it will make your brain hurt.

Lessig and others advocate a revolutionary "open spectrum" - a public space or "wireless commons" where anyone can send signals across any frequencies without permission as long as they obey a few rules of the road. In this wireless nirvana, smart receivers decide which signals to accept and which to ignore.

Meanwhile spectrum continues to be divided up as property, as 20-year rights sold to the highest bidder and relying on free market incentives to provide innovation and the best deal for consumers. But the ministry is scratching its head to find ways to stop hoarding.

Under consideration are "use it or lose it" ownership clauses and "spectrum caps" to limit how much one can own. Unused UHF frequencies could also be "designated services" that dominant players like TVNZ would be required to lease to competitors on commercial terms.

But none of this is likely to happen any time soon. Neither is the move to digital television, which would also make the spectrum shortage disappear.

The ministry has a huge holding pen of unused UHF frequencies set aside for future digital terrestrial and satellite TV purposes. The advantage is that such transmissions squeeze more channels through the air.

The ministry's digital terrestrial holding pen allows at least 40 new channels in addition to the existing analogue channels. Add to that the digital satellite channels of Sky TV, the largely unused satellite channels of TVNZ, plus the ministry's satellite holding pen, and the sky is indeed the limit for TV channels.

But the brave new world of digital channels to burn comes with an enormous price tag - and so far, little enthusiasm from broadcasters.

To receive digital channels, consumers need new set top boxes, and if it's a satellite feed, a box and a dish. Estimates vary, but the cost across TV households is anywhere between $100 million and $500 million.

Then there is the cost of new transmission equipment which for digital terrestrial TV is between $50 and $90 million.

Add to that the sum broadcasters have to pay to renew their existing licences which expire in 2010, plus buying new digital frequencies at auction, and one can understand broadcaster reluctance.

A consultant's study of the value of existing VHF spectrum, for example, shows TVNZ's frequencies are worth between $111 and $158 million and TV3's $29-$42 million.

But just when it looks hopeless for Mai, the wizards at BCL are working on an innovative solution - combining some old audio channels and turning them into a UHF TV channel. Which goes to show, that depending on how one looks at it, the sky is not full after all.

FSTV's Joker To Capture Market

From http://www.thisdayonline.com/news/20040508news12.html

Frontage Satellite Television (FSTV) has revealed that the unique selling point it hopes to employ is domesticated programming which is not specific to any particular region.

This revelation was made by FSTV's General Consultant, Mr Alan Constant yesterday in Lagos.

"We are using a technique with scratch card, pay-as-you-go scratch card. This allows you to subscribe for one week or one month, or one year. If you think you have the capacity on a monthly basis and if you had a bad month, you could very well not subscribe for that month. So this gives you flexibility."

Constant added: "I think FSTV has an advantage market with Nigerian needs. The fact is that it is aimed purely at Nigeria, and a Nigerian company should supply the programmes that Nigerians want, hence the price structure is flexible."

The satellite television network has sealed several deals including the over $4 million paid to acqure importnt sporting events live. The first deal with Octagon C.S.I. means that live coverage of this year's biggest football tournament, Euro 2004 wll be covered live on FSTV.

The package also includes rights to the FA Cup, the Carling Cup, Nationwide League Football, the Scottish Premier League and the England home matches for the 2006 World Cup.

The second deal with Matchroom Sport will see exclusive world championship boxing, snooker, pool, dart as well as PGA golf events.

Single-chip silicon tuner

From http://www.ferret.com.au/articles/42/0c020242.asp

ST Microelectronics has released the STB6000, a single-chip silicon tuner designed to replace complex discrete component tuners in set-top boxes (STBs) used for receiving digital TV or web-based material via satellite.

A lower component count and simplified printed circuit board design lead to savings in STB construction. The discrete tuner circuitry of existing products is replaced with a single 32-lead package, requiring minimal supporting components. There is no need for specialist RF expertise as the RF processing circuitry is integrated into the chip.

The STB6000 is suitable for use in satellite STBs around the world. It supports digital video broadcasting, DIRECTV and very small aperture terminal protocols.

The input frequency range is 950MHz to 2150MHz. This meets the requirements of satellite broadcasters worldwide. It supports symbol frequency rates from one to 45 million symbols a second.

The chip includes fully integrated local oscillator and phase locked loop, differential I/Q outputs, and a buffered XO output for clocking other devices. It has low power consumption, and will assist STB manufacturers in meeting EU power directives.

Zee to launch Telugu news channel

From http://www.deccan.com/Business/Business.asp?#Zee%20to%20launch%20Telugu%20news%20channel

Hyderabad May 7: The Telugu satellite television market is set to get a new player—Zee Television Ltd. The cable television pioneer is set to launch what Zee Telefilms chairman and managing director, Subhash Chandra, calls a Telugu “infotainment” channel, even as it is working to unleash a bouquet of new soaps on Zee.

“The management has decided in principle to launch a Telugu infotainment channel, and needs to be approved by the board. We expect to launch the channel soon,” Chandra told Deccan Chronicle in an exclusive interview here.

While admitting that the Telugu satellite television market was “overcrowded”, Chandra however said, “Our Telugu channel will be different from the others. We believe our strength will be in programming and marketing support.” The channel is expected to have a blend of news and soaps.

The Hyderabad-based Pad-malaya Telefilms Ltd, in which Zee Telefilms has a 51 per cent stake, is expected to chip in with software for the new TV channel.

Chandra said Zee would also be launching several new soaps from June. “We are working on several serials, which will be different from what is currently available now on our own and our competitors’s channels,” he said. “We will be launching one new programme every month from June.”

He denied that the network’s flagship channel, Zee, was losing viewers to channels like Sony Entertainment Television, which has reported a jump in its prime-time Television Rating Points. “Zee and Sony are neck-and-neck. We expect to expand our viewership with the new programming,” he said. Chandra said Zee Telefilms would also be focusing on movie production and spreading its theatre assets, besides setting up multiplexes in seven cities.

“We will begin with the digitisation of the 120 cinemas which Pad-malaya controls, and expand it in phases. We are planning to build two multiplexes in Mumbai, and one each in Delhi, Ahmedabad, Ban-galore, Chennai, Chandigarh and Lucknow,” he said. Padmalaya Telefilms would be heading Zee’s strategy of digitizing cinemas in south India, while E-Citi, another group company, would be handling western and northern India.

He said Zee Telefilms had no plans to merge Padmalaya Telefilms with itself. “The Raos who manage Padm-alaya are good people, and we have a good working relationship with them,” he said. Padmalaya Telefilms is managed by Ghatamaneni Adi Seshagiri Rao, brother of Telugu film actor, Krishna. Padmalaya Telefilms will also be leading Zee’s push into animation. “Zee has transferred its animation division, Zee Institute of Creative Arts to Padmalaya, so they can work together on animation projects. There is a lot of scope for creating animation for major studios in Europe and US,” he said.

TELE-satellite News - Number 19/2004 ­ 9 May 2004 -

A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by

TELE-satellite International

Editor: Branislav Pekic
Edited Apsattv.com Edition

A S I A & P A C I F I C



Voice of America launched a daily Armenian-language TV
feed on May 3, aimed at providing daily TV stories to
viewers in Armenia and the extensive Armenian diaspora
throughout the Middle East and Europe. For this
venture, VOA has partnered with Armenia TV, which will
air the feeds during its weekday newscasts and present
a 30-minute block of VOA television material every
Saturday. A recent survey showed that 97 per cent of
Armenians use television each week as a source of news
about current events. Armenia TV reaches 52 per cent
of viewers between the ages of 25 and 50 in Armenia
alone and is one of the first private TV-companies in
Armenia to have such an extensive reach via satellite.
Armenia TV is also available via satellite
subscription in Western Europe and the Middle East,
including the United Kingdom, France, Germany,
Switzerland, Holland, Bulgaria, Romania, Spain,
Portugal, Cyprus, Greece, Lebanon, Syria and Israel.
Amerikai Dzain Herustahandes (VOA TV Magazine) is
included in each weekday news programme, broadcast at
3:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m. local time (1000 and 1330 UTC)
to audiences in Armenia. A compilation of each week's
reports will air Saturdays at 11:00 p.m. local time
(1800 UTC).

Internet ­ http://www.VOANews.com/Armenian



The Australian Broadcasting Authority (ABA) has
released the 2002-03 Broadcasting Financial Results
for commercial radio and television broadcasters. The
48 reporting television licensees achieved revenue of
US$2,521.7 million, a 6.7 per cent increase over the
previous year. Of the US$2,471 million in revenue
generated by the three major television networks, the
Nine Network and its affiliate licensees accounted for
43.7 per cent, the Seven Network and its affiliate
licensees for 30.1 per cent and the Ten Network and
its affiliate licensees for 26.2 per cent.



Gulf Air has unveiled a deal with BBC World to carry
the biggest block of BBC programming on any Middle
East carrier. Passengers will have the daily updated
BBC World News from June 1, and the choice of
programmes such as Talking Movies, Click Online, Hard
Talk and Top Gear. The News will be live from next
year as satellite technology advances.



Hong Kong Cable Television, a subsidiary of i-Cable
Communications (ICAB), said it has secured exclusive
rights to broadcast England's FA Premier League games
in Hong Kong for the next three football seasons
starting August this year. i-Cable is the media and
communications arm of blue chip Wharf (Holdings). Hong
Kong Cable, also known as Cable TV, said on May 4 "no
less than" 370 FAPL matches will be broadcast in their
full length for the coming season, compared with the
maximum 270 matches it aired in Hong Kong in each of
the previous three seasons. Cable TV had 656,000
subscribers at the end of 2003.


Multimedia company Chinese Entertainment Television
(CETV) has decided to end its analogue contract with
AsiaSat. The company will be paying more than $12.5
million for the termination of contract, as the
network switches from an analogue to a digital format.
Though CETV will pay AsiaSat a one-time penalty for
ending its analogue contract, the broadcaster will
continue to use AsiaSat-3S for digital transmission.


Playboy TV International (PTVI) has appointed Yes
Television in Hong Kong to represent it in key markets
in the region. As part of the arrangement, Yes
Television's president, Lanny Huang, will work with
PTVI's business development team to identify cable and
satellite opportunities in Hong Kong, China, Korea and
Taiwan for both PTVI programming and for the
international channel.



On July 5, SPE Networks will launch its dedicated
anime channel, Animax, in India, on The One Alliance,
a platform operated by Sony Entertainment Television
India (SET India) and Discovery Networks India. The
24-hour Animax South Asia is the anime network's fifth
operation in the region, following launches in Japan,
Taiwan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia. The channel
currently reaches about 5.5 million homes in Asia.
Programming will be dubbed in Hindi and English and
scheduled into four blocks. Kids' Hour, on weekdays
from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m., will target younger children
and will air in Hindi. Youth Hour, from 7 p.m. to 9
p.m., will target tweens and teens, with
English-language programming. Mega Zone, from 9 p.m.
to 11 p.m., will feature English-language programs for
a slightly older demographic. The Weekend Anime block
will also be dubbed into English.


MAX, the hybrid channel from Sony India stable, will
soon be launched in international markets across the
direct-to-home (DTH) and cable TV platforms, but
without its cricket content. MAX is being positioned
as a movie and events channel overseas and the launch
is slated for mid-June. In India, MAX has a mix of
live cricket, movies and events programming. MAX
channel can't show cricket in countries like the US,
UK and Australia. Acquisition of cricket properties by
Sony Entertainment Television (SET) including live
telecast of the World Cup is limited to India and, in
some cases, to a few neighbouring countries. Even for
live telecast of ICC cricket tournaments till 2007,
including the two World Cups, SET India has acquired
exclusive cable and satellite TV rights only across
India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Singapore and
Malaysia. For movies and events, SET India's
acquisition involves worldwide rights. This is because
movies and events are shown on Sony TV, the Hindi
general entertainment channel of SET India, which
already has a presence in countries like the UK, US,
Australia and South Africa. With Hindi movies being
extremely popular in many countries, MAX decided to
take the channel to the international market, without
its strong live cricket programming.



Television New Zealand Limited (TVNZ) has announced
its plans for a third channel, the Sunday Star Times
has reported. TVNZ Chief Executive Officer Ian Fraser
said the channel was set to be a mix of re-runs of
current affairs, local shows, minority programmes and
live broadcasts from parliament. He said it could be
go to air by the end of the year if given the
go-ahead. Critics have suggested the channel's main
purpose is to block competitors and pump up the
broadcaster's local content hours. Frazier has denied
this, saying the new channel, still in the early
stages of development, would allow TVNZ "to extend its
charter commitment, not to replace it". He said plans
would include live broadcasts of parliament's question
time and a reasonable amount of parliamentary debate.
The channel would also allow some current affairs
programmes and other successful local shows to get a
second airing.



The next phase in Disney's expansion into Asia takes
place on May 15, when its preschool educational
Playhouse Disney Channel launches on Singapore's
StarHub CableTV platform. Having started life as a
branded block on the Disney Channel on the same
platform, the full Playhouse service will be
commercial-free and will be aimed at kids 2-5,
broadcasting in English with a Chinese option.
Following the launch of the new premium service, the
Disney Channel will in June drop from StarHub's
enhanced tier into the basic tier. Playhouse Disney
launched in Hong Kong and Indonesia last month and
Disney plans to roll the network further into Asia
this year.



The Government Information Office (GIO) said on May 3
that a second public television station would require
an extraordinary amount of funding. "The annual
proposed budget for two public television stations
would be NT$9 billion, which the GIO doesn't have,"
GIO Deputy Director-General Hung Chiang-chuan told the
legislature's Education and Culture Committee. "If
there is going to be another public television
station, the funding needs to come from other
government sources." The question of whether to
privatize Taiwan Television (TTV) and China Television
System (CTS) is still being reviewed by the Executive
Yuan. In recent years, the proliferation of cable
television stations has caused ratings for TTV and CTS
to drop. Facing fierce competition, these stations
have had trouble staying afloat.




New Skies Satellites on May 3 announced that Nigeria's
first indigenous pay-TV operator, Frontage Satellite
Television (FSTV), has selected New Skies' powerful
NSS-7 satellite to launch a new direct-to-home (DTH)
television service. The service will launch
commercially this month, initially broadcasting 20
channels of premium news, sports and entertainment
programming from Africa, Asia, Europe and America.
Content will be aggregated by Kingston inmedia in the
United Kingdom, which will uplink the programming to
NSS-7 for deliver direct to more than 20,000 current
subscribers via a 54 MHz transponder on the
satellite's high-powered West Africa Ku-band beam.
FSTV's channel line-up includes programming from BBC
World, Big Screen Africa, CNBC, CNN, Discovery
Civilization, E Entertainment, EWTN, Fox News, FS
Africa, FS Entertainment, FS Miracle Channel, FS
Movies, FS Sports 1, God Channel, HGTV, MTA, MTV Base,
Nickelodeon and Sony AXN. FSTV is the brainchild of
Reuben Famuyibo, chief executive of FSTV, and a
leading figure in Nigerian business and politics. The
initial launch of the service will comprise 20
channels, of which four will be dedicated FSTV
productions - news, sports and general entertainment -
with the remainder being premium-quality pass-through
channels. The service will initially be supported by
subscription, using a novel pay-as-you-go scratch card
system, with limited advertiser support planned as the
service penetration grows. Ultimately, up to 30
channels are planned to complete the service.


No update Sunday


No update Saturday


Not much to end the week with.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Stephen Abbot

Craig, I like you see the ideal situation of one or two FTA
mux's for NZ, the only economic way forward in my view, a
DVB-T option can only serve BCL's investment in outdated and
dying kit.

As for you comments regarding the regional versions of
TV1/2. While I agree they are a waste of transponder space I
understand that TVNZ recons that they could lose up to
$20M/annum in not having regional advertising, (the only
reason for regionalsation).

A better option would be to have dymanic branching, during
normal program there would be only one stream for each of
TV1 & TV2. During add breaks new streams appear that carry
the regional adds, based on your CA info (unfortunately this
is required to make it work simply to identify where a STB
is) the STB is directed to the appropriate sub stream, to
return to the main stream at the end of the add break.
Obviosly the bit rate of each stream would reduce to
maintain the same payload, but they are only adds who cares
for quality. The current DVB protocols support this, the
only other thing is that all streams concerned must be on
the same mux as changing transponders would take to much

This above technique is used by the BBC on some of its DTH


(Craigs comment, Don't forget the new advertising opportunitys such a platform would bring. Of course its a 2 way thing to attract advertisers you need to have viewers watching. Perhaps the NZ Govt could kickstart the switch over from Analog to Digital by seeding the market with 50000 Free to Air kits, either free or subsidized. They would only cost a fraction of what was spent to get Maori Television to air.)

From JonC (Thailand)

Soccer Diet this week - listing
all times are Thai times (GMT +7)

English Premier League

M.U. vs Chelsea 08.05/18:30 - ESPN/TV7
Everton vs Bolton 08.05/21:00 - STAR
Southampton vs Aston Villa 08.05/21:00 - ESPN
Birmingham vs Liverpool 08.05/23:35 - ESPN
Fullham vs Arsenal 09.05/22:05 - ESPN/TV7/CTN

Italt Serie A
Inter vs Parma 09.05/20:00 - UBC/SCTV/(ASTRO Delay on 10/05/2004 02:30)
Reggina vs AC Milan 09.05/20:00 - LATIVI /(ASTRO Delay on 10/05/2004 04:20)

German Bundesliga

B. Munich vs W. Bremen 08.05/20:30 - UBC /(RCTI Maybe Delay about 1-3 Hours)
Bochum vs Freiburg 09.05/22:30 - UBC /(RCTI Maybe Delay about 1-3 Hours)

Spain Primera Laliga

Celta vs Barcelona 09.05/01:00 - TPI/ASTRO
R.Madrid vs Mallorca 09.05/03:00 - UBC/RCTI/ASTRO
Sevilla vs Valencia 10.05/00:30 - TPI/UBC/ASTRO
R.Santander vs Atl Madrid 10.05/02:30 - RCTI
Espanyol vs D. Coruna 10.05/12:40 - ASTRO(Delay)

From the Dish

Optus B3 152E 12658 V "Vietnamese Radio" has started on , Fta, APID 1223.(Been listed there for weeks)

Measat 1 91.5E 11044 V The Shuang Xing info card has left .

Thaicom 3 78.5E 12658 H A test card has started on , SR 25776, PIDs 512/650.

PAS 4 72E 12670 V New SR for Puglia Channel on : 3995.


News Corp firing on all cylinders

From http://www.theadvertiser.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5936,9492781%255E913,00.html

ALL News Corporation divisions are performing well, with the global media group last night announcing a 30 per cent jump in March quarter profit to $612 million.

The company said its established businesses were performing strongly while recent additions SKY Italia and DirecTV were making "encouraging progress".

But the stronger Australian dollar took some shine off the result, with third quarter revenues of $6.8 billion down from $7.4 billion previously.

In US dollar terms, News Corp reported a 69 per cent jump in March quarter profit to $US465 million and a 19 per cent rise in revenue to $US5.2 billion.

Chairman and chief executive Rupert Murdoch said several assets in which News Corp had invested heavily in recent years "continue to achieve rapid growth".

"Our film and TV production units have been buoyed by an expanding home entertainment market and our cable networks are enjoying double-digit gains on the back of advertising and affiliate growth," he said.

The company booked double-digit growth in the television, newspapers, magazines and inserts and book publishing segments, he said.

News Corp, which owns The Advertiser, said its Australian newspaper business reported 20 per cent earnings growth.

"Display and classified advertising continued to show the strong growth experienced in the first and second quarters, with ongoing strength in real estate, retail and employment advertising," the company said.

Earnings from the key filmed entertainment division rose by 6 per cent in US dollar terms despite there being no blockbuster at the cinemas.

"Film results were largely driven by the worldwide home entertainment performance of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen as well as contributions from various catalogue titles including Planet of the Apes, Moulin Rouge and Ice Age," the company said. For the nine months to March 31, News's net profit was up 47 per cent to $1.76 billion.

But losses continued at the Foxtel pay TV business in which News Corp has a 25 per cent stake. Foxtel's $83 million loss for the nine-month period was affected by costs related to its digital service launch in March.

Satellite plans lost in space

From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,4057,9490213%255E15306,00.html

IT sounds like the sort of thing a clever country should be doing - using satellites to provide cheap broadband to the outback or measure water vapour to track weather patterns.

But these projects proposed by the Co-operative Research Centre for Satellite Systems are doomed under the Howard Government's push for a commercial bent in science funding.

The Satellite CRC, which built the widely acclaimed FedSat satellite launched in 2002, will be wound up at the end of next year after the Government axed its application for new funding to continue its work.

According to the CRC's chief executive officer, Andrew Parfitt, that means much of Australia's leading-edge work in practical space science will not go ahead, unless alternative funding can be found - an unlikely prospect.

About 40 people have been working on the project, which aims, among other things, to bring down the cost of satellite technology.

The Satellite CRC is one of 19 among 52 applicants to miss out in the first round of federal funding.

"We are very disappointed," Dr Parfitt said.

"But perhaps the CRC program is not the right fit for this type of work."

The CRC received its first allocation of funds, for $3 million per year over seven years, in 1998, which covered the FedSat project.

However, its application for a new grant, worth $4 million a year for seven years, was turned down last week.

While FedSat had been expected to have fulfilled its purpose by next year, the researchers had put up a range of proposed new projects that would have drawn on the international satellite network.

These included making access to broadband via satellite more available to remote areas.

"We were going to focus on ground-station hardware terminals and on ways of using them to make access costs lower," Dr Parfitt said.

A second proposed project involved using satellite signals to measure water vapour across the continent, for use in environmental studies and improved meteorology.

The CRC program is designed to link experts from universities, research institutions and industry in collaboration on advanced projects.

In the case of the Satellite CRC, it involved researchers in Adelaide, Brisbane, Sydney, Newcastle, Melbourne and Canberra.

Congressional Committee to take up satellite channel choice bill

From http://www.accessnorthga.com/news/hall/newfullstory.asp?ID=81242

WASHINGTON,D.C. - A nationwide poll released by the Concerned Women for America says 80-percent of those polled think cable customers should not be required to pay for a basic package which may include channels they do not want .

Next week in Congress, the House Energy and Commerce Committee is scheduled to hold hearings on the issue. Tenth District Congressman Nathan Deal of Gainesville, who is a member of the Telecommunications Subcommittee , says he is in favor of the legislation.

"We want to give families a choice about the channels that come into their homes,
says Congressman Deal, "and to un-bundle the packaging that is currently being forced on consumers.

"In order to get something like CBS or the Super Bowl, you are being required to purchase MTV or other parts of a bigger package that companies like Viacom, who owns CBS, are trying to put out."

The "Satellite Home Viewers Act," as the bill is entitled, would only affect homes with satellite dishes.

"Next year, however," says Congressman Deal, "the committee is scheduled to look at the entire Telecommunications Act again and, at that point, we would be able broach this issue from the standpoint of not only satellite but also cable; so it may next year before we can take the issue on in its full proportions, but we are going to try to start the process."

MAX Set To Go Global, Sans Cricket

From http://www.financialexpress.com/fe_full_story.php?content_id=58578

MUMBAI: MAX, the hybrid channel from Sony India stable, will soon be launched in international markets across the direct-to-home (DTH) and cable TV platforms, but without its cricket content.

MAX is being positioned as a movie and events channel overseas and the launch is slated for mid-June. In India, MAX has a mix of live cricket, movies and events programming.

MAX channel can’t show cricket in countries like the US, UK and Australia. Acquisition of cricket properties by Sony Entertainment Television (SET) including live telecast of the World Cup is limited to India and, in some cases, to a few neighbouring countries. Even for live telecast of ICC cricket tournaments till 2007, including the two World Cups, SET India has acquired exclusive cable and satellite TV rights only across India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Singapore and Malaysia.

For movies and events, SET India’s acquisition involves worldwide rights. This is because movies and events are shown on Sony TV, the Hindi general entertainment channel of SET India, which already has a presence in countries like the UK, US, Australia and South Africa. With Hindi movies being extremely popular in many countries, MAX decided to take the channel to the international market, without its strong live cricket programming.

“There is a tremendous potential in going global and we will take MAX around the world soon. We are positioning it as a premium movies and events channel. Hindi movies are extremely popular among the South Asian audiences,” said MAX executive vice-president and business head Rajat Jain. He, however, declined to comment on when the channel would be launched. With the global launch, MAX will compete against other movie channels like Zee Cinema and B4U Movies. Interestingly in UK, Sony TV is bundled with B4U Movies and sold as a package in the BSKYB DTH platform.

E! Networks of US to launch 2 TV channels in India

From http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/articleshow/662435.cms

E! Networks is poised to enter the Indian market this year. The US based network runs two international TV channels - E! Entertainment as the name suggests is on entertainment world and the second one is E! Style which focuses on style, beauty, fashion and home design.

Zenith has lost another AoR. This time it's Maxima Watches which has moved the business worth Rs.7 crore from Zenith to Total Media, the media planning and buying arm of Rediffusion DY&R and Everest.

Creating ripples in the brand endorsement market, TVS Motor has bowled a googly by roping in Shoaib Akhtar along with Brett Lee and Sachin Tendulkar for an ad campaign to launch its new motorbike model Victor GLX 125. The ad is conceptualised by Saatchi & Saatchi.

JWT Chennai has won the business of Parry's Sugar , part of Murugappa Group. In the recent past, the agency has won accounts of Pinnacle Info. Solutions and Vivekananda Institute also.


The Herald had an interesting item (See news section) I don't know if Paul Norris Head of the Broadcasting School at Christchurch Polytechnic reads this site. But it is a very similar cry to one that others and I have presented to various Government Bodies and influential individuals over the last couple of years. A "NZ DTH platform" broadcasting Tv1, 2,3,4,Prime, plus other Free to AIR channels accessible to all with no monthly subscription fees. It is very certain that once such a platform is available others will join it. A start would be TVNZ DUMPING the duplicate Tv1/2 transmissions on their 12456V transponder. There is no need for "regional" versions of them. Given the size of the country and the same time zone through out. The Government should be actively promoting such an initiative and providing capacity to interested parties at realistic rates to groups like MAITV and others to launch such channels. Given the current cost of reception equipment if bulk purchasing can be achieved there should be nowhere in New Zealand where digital quality reception could not be achieved.

Jon's Asia Weekly

Issue 3

"What is about rainy days."

Back when I used to live down under I could not wait
to get inside and snuggle up in front of a warm fire
and watch the tele. Now living here in Asia you still
get the same feeling, but, but, but it is 32 degrees
Celsius outside and feels like a warn bath rather than
rain, and if that is not bad enough, I now have rain
fade on my little 75cm Ku band dish

So much for watching the tele.

Strange how it is the little things you miss when you
do not have them isn’t it? I was watching some free
to air programming from India [PAS 8 KU] this morning,
Zee Cinema, and then along comes the thunder and then
the rain. So as I was sitting there in the lounge
listening to the click click of the signal breaking
up, all of a sudden for now reason what so ever, I
remembered watching the opening of the old Australian
ABC outback service on Intelsat (now 24 years later
and called ABC AP) with the “Advance Australia fair”
music at 8am local time (NZST) and enjoying a good
morning of satellite TV on the old 5 meter analog
systems we used to design and build.

Those were the days.

Now here we are today, I thought, with 60cm or 75cm
offset dishes providing for a few dollars what a 7 or
10 meter dish system used to do for hundreds of
thousand of dollars. My, how technology marches on.

Turning off the TV and marching into the study, I
decide it is time to spend a little time in front of
the computer and have a play with my computer based
satellite card. Not everyone’s cup of tea, a
computer, but fun never the less.

Armed with a el cheapo satellite PCI card, el cheapo
surround sound system, an old Dell P4 computer and a
7.5 foot extra (KU/C Band) dish what better thing to
do in the rain, check out the C band on PAS 8. It
never ceases to amase me how much you can do with
computers these days, and while I am typing this
article, I am very happily listening to the “bird
humming channel” chirping away on PAS 8 C band digital
radio. It sounds so good you would think it is a nice
fine day outside, albeit our soi [small road] is now
nearly flooded, and the thunder is a constant reminder
the monsoon is on it way.

Digital radio, in my humble opinion, is often the
unsung hero of our digital age, and even more so for
many of us reading this web site. When was the last
time you listened anything on the radio side of our
hobby? Go on be honest? Our Grandfather’s, fathers and
our kids, have had access to “radio” now for nearly
100 years and it never ceases to amase me how “radio”
seems to reinvents itself every 25 years or so. How
many of you build xtal sets as kids? I did. Digital
satellite radio has come a very long way from either a
hertz crystal or old 0A91 diode. So if you have not
done any satellite radio DX lately, try it you might
be surprised at what you find out there.

C Band

Remember last week, the hottest thing as the “Great
Sports Channel”? Well it went and encrypted itself,
leaving allot of sports hungry fans out here in Asia.
Looks like TV7 followed suit on Palapa C2, (Craigs comment its back fta)
thus slimming down the diet of frequently watched sports.

ST1 is playing encryption roulette this week, going
from FTA to encrypted, back to FTA then a totally
different encryption system.

KU Band

perfecTV has a small number of FTA channels you can
see from Thailand across to Japan (and rumoured even
down to South Australia on a 4meter dish) on the JCSAT
series of birds. We get about 160 channels here off
two birds, of which 98% of them are encrypted.

Nice to see more channels of PAS 8 beaming to this
part of Asia, and we can now get three channels from
them on 7.5 foot extra mesh dish. One on a 75cm offset
dish as I mentioned above.

S Band

HOT: Worldspace satellite radios.


The V-Box hit the Thai markets last week (an eMetabox
1 clone) and are selling like hot cakes. The XSAT 410
is proving to be a best seller across the region,
followed closely by its big brother the XSAT 430 but
still a very close second to the SilverBox II here in
the local Thai market.


Not much to report other this week, other than many of
the FTA STB’s made by sucessDVB in China, badged here
as a DP303 are having firmware problems and saying
there is an “actuator fault” (three separate reports
here this week, including me) ­ good luck in getting
them fixed.

The same bright spark who tried the 75cm offset dish
last week on the C Band bird ST1, has also done it
with a 1.5 meter offset dish with great results on
PAS7/10, Thaicom 2/3, ST1 and others. Now to watch
him try and build the C & KU dual feed mount, this
will be fun to see.


This weekend the usual suspects are all there along
with F1 as well. See this Fridays post in the
“APSATTV” mailing list for more details.


There is a strong rumour that “ABC AP” are looking at
adding another transponder over the central / southern
Asia region on possibly the PAS 7/10 bird, which if
true will make 1,000’s of ex-pat’s very happy.
December 2004 is the rumoured date for this to happen.

Remember I said above my soi was starting to flood,
well as I finish writing this, I have just renamed
the road to “klong Sukhumvit” (small river).

Send all your gossip and questions to Jon at

From my Emails & ICQ

From VK4

CTN Screenshot, from Optus B3

From the Dish

PAS 2 169E 4022 H "The Hope Channel and LifeTalk Radio Network" have started on , Fta, SR 5900, FEC 2/3, PIDs 1160/1120 and 1132.

PAS 8 166E 12405 H TV Masala has left .

Optus B3 152E 12525 V "CTN (Cambodia), Emarat FM and Radio Oman" have started on , Fta, PIDs 2060/2020 and 2421-2422.

Palapa C2 113E 11472 V "Express Finance TV" is now encrypted.

NSS 6 95E 12729 V "TCT World" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1794/1795.

Insat 3A 93.5E 3897 V "CTV News" tests have left again.

Measat 1 91.5E 11106 V The test card has left .

ST 1 88E 3632 V "CTS, Da-Ai TV and TTV" are now encrypted.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "RAI International 4 has replaced TV 5 Asie" on , Fta, PIDs 49/33,00-06 HKT.

ChinaStar 1 87.5E 3892 V Occasional feeds on SR 5000, FEC 2/3.

Insat 3C 74E 3901 H Occasional feeds on , SR 3500, FEC 3/4.

PAS 4 72E 3707 V "Parliamentary Service" is still on , Fta, SR 6000, FEC 3/4, PIDs 309/258.


Paul Norris: Digital's the way to go for TVNZ

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


Forget the VCR, which many people have trouble in setting, and all those old tapes containing no more than four hours of recording. Imagine being able to record and store 60 hours of your favourite television programmes.

Even better, imagine being able to replay those programmes on several TVs in different rooms of the house at the same time: sport in one room, documentary in another, Shortland St for the teenager, and cartoons (oops, educational programmes) for the younger children.

This is what the latest multiroom DVR or digital video recorder can do. The DVR is fast becoming the hot spot in the digital revolution, the nerve centre of the interconnected digital home, able to record information and entertainment and distribute it to your TV, PC, mobile phone or hand-held media centre.

Some experts suggest the use of DVRs is poised to lift off in the way the internet did several years ago.

But if you live in New Zealand you are unlikely to see any of this for some time. There are few DVRs on the market here - a handful have been acquired by determined early adopters.

Effectively, the only digital television here is the Sky service, but unlike Sky subscribers in Britain, Sky viewers here do not have the option of a Sky set-top box combined with a hard-drive recorder.

In Britain, the Sky+ box, as it is known, is proving highly successful. Viewers report a greater sense of control over what and when they watch. They also have access to increasingly sophisticated interactive programming, layers of further choice at the touch of the remote.

In effect, New Zealanders are missing out on many of the benefits of the digital revolution because we are lagging well behind developments in the rest of the world. There are no incentives for viewers to make the switch to digital because there is little hardware available and virtually no digital free-to-air programme content. It is as if we are still playing our vinyl 78s while the rest of the world is enjoying CDs and downloading MP3s.

What is needed is an initiative from our public broadcaster, Television New Zealand. It promises, in its interim report for this year, to take a leading role in the transition to digital.

To turn this rhetoric into action, it should be starting a digital service on satellite - all the free-to-air channels together with some new services.

This would be a free-to-air service: all the viewer would need is a satellite dish and a set-top box, available from some electronic stores or satellite installers. Again, some early adopters (estimated at 10,000) have been buying these and accessing TV One and TV2, which TVNZ is transmitting not only on Sky but on its own leased satellite transponder.

But this has received little publicity or promotion. TVNZ should start a new service offering enough material to persuade viewers to switch to digital, and to establish a digital platform independent of Sky or pay TV.

In Britain the greatest driver to digital has been the remarkable growth of the Freeview service - some 30 channels, including all the main free-to-air channels and various new BBC services.

Which brings us to the strange case of the TVNZ third channel. It appears this new channel, if it goes ahead, will be a mix of some parliamentary coverage, plus repeats of other New Zealand programmes, especially minority programmes, to be screened at more hospitable times. This would be excellent as one of a suite of new digital channels.

However, TVNZ says its plan is to put this channel on UHF, on the frequencies previously used for Horizon Pacific. This might sound like a good idea, but some of the transmitters are old and could need replacing. To invest in more of the old analogue technology at this time would seem perverse indeed. Surely the bolder strategy would be to forget analogue and go straight to digital satellite.

There are other ideas for new channels that could be added into this digital free-to-air mix. The regional TV stations would like to see a "best of the regionals". There could be a channel of various educational programming. Subject to rights negotiations, Australia's ABC or SBS channels could be rebroadcast in whole or in part.

TVNZ could mount a digital satellite free-to-air service in a matter of months. It has the transponder capacity, for which it is paying millions of dollars a year - a hangover of the earlier attempt at a joint digital venture with Telstra Saturn. It has the expertise to build channels and to develop interactive services. Retailers and set-top box makers are itching to get out of the blocks.

So why is all this not happening? Why is our digital development so slow? Part of the answer lies in a ritual dance between the Government and the broadcasting industry, with neither willing to act, each apparently waiting for the other to move.

There are undoubtedly some thorny issues to be resolved for the longer-term future. One of the most difficult is whether New Zealand should have a digital terrestrial network (DTT), meaning that viewers could receive digital television using an aerial or antennae, as many do now.

We know that to build such a digital network, with the hundreds of new digital transmitters required, would be expensive, especially if it attempted to go beyond the main urban areas.

This is one of the reasons digital satellite is such an attractive option - it can be received anywhere provided the viewer has a dish and a set-top box.

It would be a bold and far-sighted decision - which would have to be agreed by both industry and Government - to say DTT was not a viable option for New Zealand and that we would commit to digital satellite as the main delivery platform.

Ultimately the most effective weapon the Government has is the power to determine the switch-off date, the date when all analogue TV signals will be switched off and when the only TV will be digital.

In Britain, the plan is to begin the switch-off in 2007, in the United States some time between 2006 and 2010. Here we are some way from even being able to envisage a target date.

The international experience makes two points very clear. The first is that the move to digital requires both carrots and sticks, incentives and deadlines. The second is that the greatest progress is being made where governments have been proactive and prepared to take a leadership role.

If consumers are to reap the benefits of the digital revolution, we need to see more action from both TVNZ and the Government.

* Paul Norris is head of the broadcasting school at Christchurch Polytechnic.

New Zealand Defence Force Selects Stratos' Enhanced Lease Service (ELS) for Shipboard Satellite Data and Voice Communications

From Press Release

U.S. Navy, Canada's Department of National Defence and Australian Defence Force also using innovative service that provides 128 kbps throughput on a standard leased satellite channel using Inmarsat-B

BETHESDA, MD, May 5 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ - Stratos Global Corp. (TSX: SGB - News), a leading global communications services and solutions provider, announced today that the New Zealand Defence Force (NZDF) has selected Stratos' Enhanced Leasing Service (ELS) for global, full-duplex, leased satellite bandwidth to enable advanced data and voice communications using Inmarsat-B satellite systems aboard ships. The service is also being used to support land deployments.

The NZDF joins the U.S. Navy, Canada's Department of National Defence and the Australian Defence Force in taking advantage of enhanced leasing services from Stratos, which use advanced modem modulation techniques to increase throughput on a standard 100-kHz Inmarsat leased satellite channel from 64 kbps to 128 kbps without the need for additional space segment.

The three-year contract with the NZDF is valued at approximately US$1.1 million. The contract calls for Stratos to provide managed leased services and 24x7 customer support. It enables the NZDF to utilize the leases provided by Stratos under a separate contract with increased throughput and flexibility.

Customers currently have the option of operating a single Inmarsat-B mobile terminal at 128 kbps. Later this year, Stratos plans to add the capability to share a single leased channel among up to eight mobile terminals, with perterminal, user-controlled data rates of 16, 32, 64, and 128 kbps, in any combination up to the combined maximum rate of 128 kbps.

With ELS, military and large commercial maritime fleets have twice the available bandwidth to support shipboard voice, data and fax communications, including crew calling and e-mail, using Inmarsat-B satellite systems. The new capabilities available later this year will allow customers to dynamically allocate bandwidth between vessels to optimize the utilization of leased satellite capacity.

"Stratos has an established reputation as a reliable provider of dedicated and secure shipboard data and voice communications for governments and military organizations throughout the world," said Ted Knowsley, acting director, joint communications, New Zealand Defence Force. "This experience, combined with the higher bandwidth and flexibility available with Stratos' Enhanced Leasing Service, were major factors in our decision to select Stratos as our provider."

"Stratos' Enhanced Leasing Service represents a dramatic step forward in the efficient use of satellite capacity for large maritime customers, providing double the throughput without the need to add an additional leased channel," said Jim Parm, Stratos' president and CEO. "The introduction of ELS further solidifies Stratos' position as the leader in providing full-time Inmarsat leased satellite channel service to military and commercial maritime fleets throughout the world."

Stratos is the leading global provider of Inmarsat leased channel services and the only Inmarsat Land Earth Station Operator (LESO) with facilities and installed equipment to access all five Inmarsat second-generation satellites, which together provide coverage in nearly every part of the world.

About Stratos

Stratos (www.stratosglobal.com) is a publicly traded company (TSX: SGB - News) and leading international telecommunications services provider offering customers operating in remote locations a variety of satellite and microwave wireless technologies to provide Internet Protocol, data, and voice solutions through a range of newly emerging and established technologies such as Inmarsat®, Intelsat®, Iridium®, Globalstar®, VSAT, and others. Stratos serves an array of diverse markets including government, military, oil and gas, maritime, industrial, aeronautical, media and recreational users anywhere in the world.

ST to launch licensable DVB-S modulator

From http://www.eetimes.com/sys/news/showArticle.jhtml?articleID=19502379

PARIS — Eager to keep its lead on a global digital satellite market, STMicroelectronics said Wednesday (May 5) it has begun offering a licensable modulator design based on the new DVB-S2 specification.

The emerging DVB-S2 standard, which has cleared the Digital Video Broadcast (DVB) group's rigorous technology verification tests, is the next-generation satellite digital video broadcasting spec. It is designed to provide a big increase in the number of channels that can be broadcast in a conventional transponder.

The DVB-S2 scheme includes a new 8PSK modulation scheme, a new forward-error correction method based on low density parity check (LDPC) and special synchronization tools.

Leading satellite broadcaster such as DirecTV and EchoStar are reportedly interested in migrating their satellite infrastructure from DVB-S to the more bandwidth-efficient DVB-S2. The move would allow them to boost satellite transmission capacity to offer more local channels along with local programming in high-definition format.

No professional satellite equipment exists yet to handle new DVB-S2 modulation, said Chris Carter, marketing manager of satellite and terrestrial business unit at ST's set top division. ST hopes to kick start the DVB-S2 satellite market by making the new DVB-S2 modulator design available to broadcast equipment manufacturers as licensable VHDL code.

ST has also designed its own DVB-S2 modulator including LDPC, according to Carter.

Although ST is the first to announce the availability of a licensable IP for DVB-S2-compliant modulator, Hughes Networks Systems said last fall it had begun licensing its own LDPC implementation as synthesizable cores to semiconductor companies.

Hughes surprised the digital satellite industry last year by proposing LDPC as a key forward-error correction technology for the DVB-S2. The old coding theory was originally introduced by Robert Gallagher of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology more than 30 years ago. After exhaustive analysis and simulations, the DVB-S2 technical committee subsequently proved that LCPC could outperform newer Turbo code technologies.

The DVB group's decision to go with 8PSK combined with LDPC in the next-generation satellite transmission spec sent leading set-top IC vendors back to a drawing board. Many of them, including ST, had been betting on Turbo coding.

ST wasted little time in offering an optimized DVB-S2 modulator design, largely as a result of its close involvement with the DVB technical group.

ST's Carter the company will have a DVB-S2-compliant demodulation chip for satellite set-top receivers before the end of the year.

According to ST, the target for DVB-S2 has been to achieve optimum transmission performance along with system flexibility and reasonable receiver complexity. It added said that test results show that DVB-S2 benefits from recent developments in channel coding and modulation while providing 30 percent more capacity than DVB-S.

ST said capacity is so close to the theoretical performance limit — the so-called "Shannon Limit" &3151; that it is unlikely there will be a need to develop a later specification.

Tom Online listing spurs group profit

From http://www.thestandard.com.hk/thestandard/news_detail_frame.cfm?articleid=47368&intcatid=1

Multimedia investment firm Tom Group has reported its fourth straight quarter of profit, as a hefty gain from spinning off Tom Online more than offset provisions incurred from restructuring.

Net profit was HK$653.9 million, or 16.86 cents a share, in the first quarter, compared with a net loss of HK$42.9 million, or 1.29 cents a share, a year ago. Turnover jumped by a fifth to HK$514.5 million from HK$428.9 million.

The upswing was driven by an exceptional gain of HK$873.4 million from a separate listing of unit Tom Online on the Growth Enterprise Market and Nasdaq in March that raised about US$194 million (HK$1.51 billion).

Chief executive Sing Wang said Tom Online, in which Tom Group holds 72 per cent, will remain the largest earner this year.

In the first quarter, Tom Group posted Ebitda, or earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation, of HK$61.94 million, down from HK$105 million in the fourth quarter of last year.

Tom Group made its first quarterly net profit of HK$10.2 million in the second quarter of last year after going public in March 2000.

Tom made a HK$134.3 million provision for restructuring in the first quarter at its satellite TV unit China Entertainment Television Broadcast (CETV), which it bought from Time Warner last year for US$6.8 million.

For CETV, which has broadcasting rights in Guangdong, the objective is to drive for revenue growth, while controlling costs and improving programming and distribution, Tom Group said.

The group made a one-off provision of HK$82.73 million against the impairment of assets and goodwill amortisation, as well as a provision of HK$22.48 million against receivables.

``In the foreseeable future, Tom Group should not have much provision to make,'' chief financial officer Tommei Tong said.

Wang said the provisions against assets and some receivables were necessary because of a change in the status of its mainland-based audio-visual products distributor Hong Xiang New to an associate from a subsidiary.

Shares of Tom Group closed unchanged at HK$1.77 yesterday.


NEW Channel!

Optus B3 Globecast mux had a new channel added last night, CTN which is Cambodian
Details, B3 12524V transponder, on Vpid 2060 A pid 2020 Sid 10. Remember this is only a test signal. So don't start promoting it as a new channel to your customers just yet.

You can send your support email's to channelfeedback@globecast.com.au
website for the channel is http://www.ctncambodia.com/

Another new signal on the same transponder is Oman Radio on Apid 2422 Sid 18

Fox sports nba feed reported Agila 2 3884V sr 3214

From my Emails & ICQ

From Steve D

Global Harness Racing Channel on Sky NZ

"Jeff Wilson will be back on television screens later
this month ... and there won't be a rugby or cricket
ball in sight.

The former All Black and New Zealand cricketer will be
co-hosting the Global harness racing TV channel when
it goes to air live from Addington on May 14.

The opportunity arose after a chance meeting with
Global's co-founder and presenter Sheldon Murtha at an
Addington race meeting.

"I knew of his interest in harness racing", Murtha
said yesterday".
- as reported by the Otago Daily Times, 5 May 2004.

The article confirmed that the channel could be viewed
on Sky Channel 90, home of Southland TV.

Murtha has established the Global channel as an
alternative to Trackside, which he believed had
deteriorated with the TAB's policy of cramming in
obscure races at the expense of background stories.

It was hoped to expand Global's coverage to include
some American and North American racing.

Murtha hopes the channel will cover up to eight race
meetings a year.

Steves comment,

My best bet is that it will be free-to-air for Sky digital
subscribers. There has been concern for some time that NZ meetings
are not covered as well as in the past on Trackside. Instead of
post-race comment it's off to a minor dogs race in Dead Koala Pond or
somewhere. There is a perception that TAB is cramming more races into
Trackside so punters will have more races to bet on. The clubs would
prefer more tips and comments.

Southland TV already has local racing programmes. The name 'Global
harness racing Channel' seems to me to be a bit grandiose. The
channel is in fact Southland TV. Up to eight race meetings a year
will be covered. That is: one meeting per broadcast, with tips and
post-race comments about races at that meeting. It'll be interesting
to see if the cameras covering the race for 'Trackside' are also used
by Global of if they have to provide their own live cameras.

IMHO, it's good that a monopoly (TAB) is being challenged in
this way. Who knows, it might mean the TAB will be more open in the
future to allowing Trackside F-T-A off the satellite.

Steve D

From Steve D

The Asian radio channels on B1, Ch 88 & 89 are
currently f-t-a for Sky digital subscribers.

Steve D

From Steve Hume

Some of ST1 FTA ATM


On 3632V, 26656 are all currently FTA (11:30am Oz)

NEWS 24x7
Steve Hume

From the Dish

JCSAT 2A 154E 12272 V Occasional Keirin feeds on , SR 4820, FEC 3/4

Sinosat 1 110.5E 12660 H "Gansu Education Satellite TV" is back on , Fta, SR 3617, FEC 3/4,PIDs 110/111.

NSS 6 95.5E 11543 V "NTD TV" has left , moved to Eutelsat W5.

Express AM 11 Express AM 11 has left 96.5 East, moving east.(But to where? 140? 142.5? 145E?? Lyngsat says at 104.5E at the moment)

Measat 1 91.5E 11044 VA Shuang Xing info card has started on , Mediaguard, PIDs 172/128.

ST 1 88E 3632 V "TV 5 Asie has replaced RAI International 4" on , Fta, PIDs 49/33,00-06 HKT.

PAS 4 72E 3707 V "Parliamentary Service" has left .
PAS 4 72E 12670 V New PIDs for Puglia Channel on : 308/256.

PAS 10 68.5E 3744 V "TBN Africa" has left again.


Seven's pay-TV trial at start line

From http://www.theaustralian.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5744,9472342%255E7582,00.html

THE starting gun has been set for the biggest trial in Australian media history, with the Federal Court ruling the Seven Network's $2 billion-plus legal action against pay-TV group Foxtel and others will start on March 7.

After more than 18 months of legal document discovery and hearings, the scene is now set for an epic trial which the court expects to take between three and six months.

But in a shock move, it emerged yesterday the case may have its third judge in as many years after Justice Ron Sackville indicated he may be unable to hear the trial.

Justice Sackville said a native title case he is presently hearing may run longer than expected, potentially making him unavailable.

"There is the possibility that if it does drag on that someone else will have to come in and do the trial," he said.

The previous judge overseeing the case, Justice Roger Gyles, excused himself in December 2002 after receiving a letter from one of the defendants which he considered "inappropriate".

Seven launched the mammoth legal action in 2002 after the closure of its C7 pay-TV sports channel which had been on the Optus and Austar pay-TV services.

It alleges that Foxtel and its owners – The Australian's publisher News Limited, Publishing & Broadcasting Ltd and Telstra – and others conspired to keep C7 out of the pay-TV market.

Seven alleges they acted anti-competitively to prevent C7 gaining the AFL pay-TV rights, leading to C7's closure.

Seven's counsel John Halley yesterday indicated much of the argument would focus on definition of a pay-TV market.

He said Seven was likely to call five expert witnesses, up to four of whom were experts on the definitions of market and competition, while the final expert would appear on the issue of damages.

The Australian Competition & Consumer Commission has always considered pay-TV to be a separate market from free-to-air TV, videos or cinema but News and some of the defendants are seeking to disprove that.

News's counsel Peter Brereton also indicated News was likely to undertake a consumer survey to prove the companies operated in a broader entertainment market, and not a smaller pay-TV market.

Mr Brereton said the intention of the survey would be to "obtain evidence in relation to whether pay-TV, DVDs, free-to-air and video are substitutable".

"It goes to the question of a market," he said.

That issue is crucial as the court must decide the parameters of the market before it can decide if competition within it has been reduced.

Mr Halley also raised concerns in relation to the confidentiality regime for documents from Optus – another of the defendants.

He said that prevented Seven chairman Kerry Stokes from seeing notes that Optus had taken after their meetings.

"The substance of that is something we may have to put to Mr Stokes as preparation for his evidence," he said.

Casbaa to stage satellite industry forum

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/may/may12.htm

MUMBAI: The Cable & Satellite Broadcasting Association of Asia (Casbaa) will stage the Casbaa Satellite Industry Forum on Monday 14 June 2004 in Singapore at the Fullerton Hotel.

ViaSat chairman and CEO Mark Dankberg will speak on ground-breaking technologies and regional market drivers such as new broadband applications while Middle East system operator Thuraya chairman Mohammed Omran will deal with the latest operating environment, during the event. Featured speakers also inclde the satellite industry's US state department regulator Steve Lett, Loral SkyNet president Terry Hart, HBO Asia ceo Jonathan Spink and Telkom South Africa ceo Sizwe Nxasana, informs a press release.

Topics expected to come under discussion include issues such as the power of direct-to-home (DTH) broadcasting and Asia's improving regulatory environment. The day will also see high-powered ceo forum named "satellites looking up" debating on the Asian satellite industry.

This will be an exciting and challenging day for the Asian satellite business," said Simon Twiston Davies, CEO, Casbaa. "Yet again we turn to the experts to give us guidance on the why, when, how and 'how much' issues that face the Asia Pacific industry. This will be fun as well as informative."

Casbaa has appointed Hong Kong-based specialist marketing agency Branded, to undertake the marketing of the event. Sponsors for the Casbaa Satellite Industry Forum 2004 include ILS, Loral Skynet, AsiaSat, Arianespace, Marsh, Boeing, PanAmSat, Worldsat and Measat. The official media partner for the event is TelecomAsia with other media partners including BroadcastPapers, Content & Technology, Satellite Finance and Satellite Evolution Asia, informs the official release.

Full details of the programme and registration procedures is available on the Casbaa website.

Ten Sports' subscription revenue model punctured

From http://in.rediff.com/money/2004/may/04cas.htm

Ten Sports has said its estimated loss of Rs 200 crore (Rs 2 billion) from sharing the feed of the recently concluded India-Pakistan cricket series with Doordarshan was reasonable because it had to pay Rs 280 crore (Rs 2.80 billion) to the Pakistan Cricket Board to acquire exclusive telecast rights for the series, senior company officials told Business Standard.

"Ten Sports had secured the rights for telecast of cricket matches being played in Pakistan for a period of five years on payment of Rs 280 crore. To state that Ten Sports' desire to make a legitimate return on its investment is unjustified or illegal would be ludicrous," a Ten Sports executive said.

Arguing that the channel's subscription revenue model had suffered a blow, the Ten Sports officials said the company was at a disadvantage vis-a-vis others which offer a bouquet of channels.

"For such companies, it is possible to subsidise losses suffered by particular channels from revenues generated from other channels. Ten Sports is a single channel company and that too in the niche activity of sports," the officials said.

Ten Sports had projected to penetrate all 45 million cable & satellite homes in the country during the Indian cricket team's tour. However, the numbers fell well short of the projections once it was decided that it would have to share the feed with Prasar Bharti for its Doordarshan network.

It is worth noting that Prasar Bharti, the state broadcaster, and Ten Sports went to the courts over the issue. Prasar Bharti said that the series was a historic one and the vast majority of the country's people who do not have access to satellite television could not be deprived of the telecast.

The Supreme Court had passed an interim order allowing Prasar Bharti to show the matches after depositing with it a sum of Rs 50 crore (Rs 500 million). The matter, which listed for a hearing on May 3, has been postponed.

On its part, Cable Distribution Network, a Modi Enterprises company which distributes Ten Sports in India, had claimed damages worth Rs 208 crore (Rs 2.08 billion) for sharing the telecast with the state broadcaster.

The company had said that the damages reflect the loss in subscription revenue arising from the live telecast also being available on Prasar Bharti's free-to-air Doordarshan channel.

Israeli firm signs multi-million contract with ITC

From http://www.thehindubusinessline.com/businessline/blnus/07051106.htm

JERUSALEM: Israeli firm, Gilat Satellite Networks Ltd, has announced it has signed a multi-million dollar contract with Indian Tobacco Company Ltd to supply VSATs for the company's expanding internet project, E-Choupal, now reaching over 2 million farmers in six States.

As per the agreement, Gilat will be supplying its Skystar 360E VSATs to the Indian company as it expands its operations to cover 11 more States.

The Israeli firm has already supplied over 1,500 VSATs during the past 12 months, primarily for ITC's E-Choupal project. Part of the implementation of the E-Choupal network is being carried out by Gilat's long-time customer and system integrator, HCL Comnet Ltd.

"The enthusiastic response from farmers has encouraged us to plan for the extension of the E-Choupal initiative to 11 other States across India over the next few years.

"There are plans to channelise services related to micro-credit, insurance, health and education through the same E-Choupal infrastructure", a company release quoted ITC's International Business Division CEO, Mr Siva Kumar, as saying.

Gilat's Executive Vice President of Sales, Mr Avihu Bergman, said, `India continues to fulfill its promise as one of the world's fastest-growing markets for VSAT technology. With the acceleration in the deployment of E-Choupal sites by ITC, we feel vindicated in our continued commitment to this project and the Indian market'. - PTI


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

Emirates FM started yesterday on B3 12524V Globecast mux on Apid 2421 Sid 17 I expect the one on 12658V will be removed soon.

The Mundine Fight tomorrow will also be broadcast on the Malaysian Astro Pay TV service.

Tv7 on Telkom 1 is still FTA.

From my Emails & ICQ

From JonC (Thailand)

Lots of new ku band channels in Bangkok on

JCSAT 3a 128E
Freq: 12418
S/R: 21096

One channel FTA playing cartoons (93 channels in total over a number of transponders, with 4 FTA channels - 3 called "CH. 700" - Sky PerfecTV - Japan)

plus 3 radio stations

From Henry T

There is an ad on TVB 8 on Asiasat 3 saying they are changing channel. I don't know when they are changing.

New channel is supposed to be 4111 Mhz Horizontal and a SR of 13.65 Mbps

Best Regards From,

From the Dish

PAS 2 169E 4040 H "LifeTalk Radio Network" has started on , Fta, APID 1132.

Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "SuperSport 3 has replaced Star Sports Asia and ESPN Asia" on ,Viaccess, PIDs 68/69.

NSS 6 95E 12673 V "ABC Asia Pacific" has started on , Fta, SR 6508, FEC 3/4,PIDs 2307/2308, Australian beam.(Gone by now I think)

Insat 3A 93.5E 3897 V "CTV News" has started testing on , Fta, SR 2000, FEC 3/4,PIDs 4194/4195.
Insat 3A 93.5E 3921 V Occasional feeds on , SR 3030, FEC 3/4.

NSS 703 57E 3808 R The Udaya TV info card has left (PAL).


Six arrested over pay-TV piracy

From http://www.news.com.au/common/story_page/0%2C4057%2C7130189%255E15319%2C00.html

SIX men are facing pay-TV piracy charges following raids over three days by Victoria Police.

The men, who include satellite television technicians, are alleged to be part of a fraud scheme which manufactured pay-TV decoder smart cards to connect viewers to subscription TV services on the Mornington Peninsula and suburban Melbourne.

Industry body, the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association (ASTRA), said the arrests were the result of four separate inquiries launched by Foxtel investigators.

During raids on the suspects between Wednesday and Friday last week police seized pirated smart cards, business records and computer equipment allegedly used to manufacture pirate smart cards.

The six men will be summonsed to appear on a range of fraud and piracy related offences at a later date.

ASTRA executive director Debra Richards said the industry had beefed up its efforts to track down people illegally intercepting pay-TV broadcasts

"We hope today's announcement will send a clear warning to people not to be hoodwinked into piracy.

"Piracy is a crime," she said

Satellite group has bullish outlook

From http://news.ft.com/servlet/ContentServer?pagename=FT.com/StoryFT/FullStory&c=StoryFT&cid=1083180252705

PanAmSat, the US satellite operator set to be acquired by buy-out firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts, said yesterday it expected second-quarter revenues of $200m-$215m and continued growth in its government services work.

PanAmSat said total revenues for the first quarter of 2004 increased to $205.4m, from $199.8m a year earlier. A non-cash charge of $100m, due to a satellite problem, resulted in a loss of 21 cents per share, compared with a profit of 21 cents a share a year ago.

In April, after a three-month auction, KKR agreed to pay $3.55bn cash for PanAmSat, which operates 22 satellites around the world. The company is 80.5 per cent owned by DirecTV, the satellite broadcaster controlled by Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation.

The deal is expected to close in the second half of the year.

PanAmSat draws most of its revenue from leasing fixed satellite services, and said it expected growth from increased demand for high- definition televisions.

It also expects continued strength in its government business, such as the distribution of secure imagery and of Voice of America broadcasts to the Middle East. Revenue from the government segment was $21.8m for the first quarter, up from $9.6m.

PanAmSat said it expected government revenue to be $20m-$30m in the second quarter, and $90-$110m for the full year.

On March 17, a back-up satellite suffered what the company called "an anomaly", resulting in a loss of power. The same satellite suffered another anomaly and greater power loss on April 1.

The company began to remove the satellite from orbit and recorded the $100m charge. PanAmSat said service to its customers had not been affected.

It does not expect future revenues to be hit by the incident, and does not plan to replace the satellite.

WorldSpace plans sub-Rs 4000 receiver

From http://inhome.rediff.com/money/2004/may/03world.htm

Terming India as the largest focus market in its global operations, WorldSpace on Monday said it has tied up with Indian manufacturer UMS to develop a 'WorldSpace receiver' which would break the existing price barrier of Rs 4,000.

"We have tied up with UMS, and the company is poised to launch a WorldSpace product in the next six months. The new WorldSpace receiver will attempt to break the Rs 4,000 price barrier," Pawan Gandhi, Head (corporate and institutional business), WorldSpace India Pvt Ltd, said.

WorldSpace currently has tie-ups with BPL, Onida and state-owned Semiconductor Complex Ltd for its receiver.

Coimbatore-based UMS is working on manufacturing a low cost receiver for WorldSpace to be used for niche institutional application and retail market, Gandhi said.

WorldSpace is a satellite broadcast company, which provides audio broadcast encompassing 40-50 audio channels in near CD quality. The equipment 'WorldSpace receiver' is priced between Rs 4,000 to Rs 10,000 and is capable of broadcasting audio as well as data.

The company provides a distance education programme Vigyan Vani in association with Vigyan Prasar, a nodal body under the Department of Science and Technology.

"This channel targets over 30,000 schools, science clubs and individual students," Gandhi said.

The audio is picked up by the WorldSpace receiver and the data by digital data adapter and computer in addition to the receiver.

"India is the largest focus market for WorldSpace globally," Gandhi pointed out.

At present, the meteorological department utilises the satellite capabilities of WorldSpace for several data broadcast-related utilities.

"The information received through the satellite is used for a number of applications like disaster warning and management and rural information kiosks. Since WorldSpace is a digital satellite-broadcasting medium, the data that is broadcast and de-crypted is faster and cheaper," he added.


Channel Z radio on Sky has gone FTA, fingers crossed that perhaps Canwest is changing policy and thinking of FTA Tv3 and Tv4?

TV7 On Telkom 108E Encrypted? Not good if true as they broadcast some popular sporting events.

From my Emails & ICQ

From Ken

Hi Craig,

Living in the outback of Australia and being in the FTA installation business of both Terrestrial TV and via Satellite I have been asked a question that both annoys me and I believe is a dishonest practise.

Now that Austar is available in the outback areas, except WA, a company called Access Television Services has sent installers to the larger towns who have been installing the Austar service.

They have been doing a good job of it except they have been telling Austar customers they don't need their UHF/VHF antennas and so are taking these down and away.

Where these are taken from they now cannot receive their local TV channels.

This is good for my business installing another high gain UHF/VHF antenna etc, but I think it is dishonest what these Pay TV installers are doing.

Are they instructed to do this I wonder as I have been told ATS/UCG have been taken over by Hills and of course they manufacture TV antennas.

Has any one else had this problem?

Ken McGrath.

(Craigs comment, we had this nonsense go on over here with Sky. "Oh shall we disconnect your rooftop antenna since you won't be needing it any more?" or how about let's use the existing Co-ax from the rooftop antenna for the Sky dish to save an unecessary extra run of cable. Or retune the UHF output of the decoder over top of your local regional UHF station.)

From Steve H

SR 5632

Motorcycle Racing Feed. Seen..

From Jonc (Thailand)

New Ku band channels for Bangkok


12399 H 3330 - 3/4 MAC TV
12412 H 3680 - 3/4 Myung Sung Church TV

12405 H 2207 - 3/4 TV Masala - Showing different name ST TELEPORT - showing Zee Cinema right now!

From Glen Gibson


ABS CBN 2 (Cinema one Global - Filipino channel) on Pas 8 has been running FTA most of today. This is a global movie and general entertainment channel made for filipino's living overseas.(Mainly in Tagalog, not much english - sorry guys.)

3880v 28700, 5/6. vpid1260, apid1220


From Various people

ABC Asia Pacfic on Aus beam NSS6
12675V Sr 6510 Fec 3/4

Optus B3 Big Brother feed, 12552V sr 6666 Fec 2/3 ENCRYPTED

From the Dish

PAS 8 166E 3836 V "TVBS Newsnet USA" has left again, replaced by occasional feeds.
PAS 8 166E 3854 V "Occasional feeds" on , SR 6620, FEC 3/4.
PAS 8 166E 12377 V Occasional Videoland feeds on , SR 4450, FEC 7/8, Australian beam.(Don't think the beam is right)

Optus B1 160E 12608 V "Channel Z" radio is FTA!.

Palapa C2 113E 11132 V "Sun TV (China) and MATV have replaced Phoenix InfoNews and King Kong on, Viaccess, PIDs 70/71 and 66/67.
Palapa C2 113E 11472 V "Express Finance TV has replaced SBN - Scholar Business Network" on , Fta, PIDs 2101/2102.

AsiaSat 3 105.5E 3880 H "Radio Quran" has started on , Fta, APID 1912.

AsiaSat 2 100.5E 4000 H "TV 5 Asie" has left , PIDs 515/652.

Express AM 11 96.5E Express AM 11 is now geostationary at 96.5 East.
Reception reports are very welcome.

NSS 6 95E 11543 V The New Skies promo is back on , Fta, PIDs 1537/1538.
NSS 6 95E 11594 H "The New Skies promo" is still/back on , Fta, PIDs 257/258.

Measat 1 91.5E 4147 H "TV 3" is Fta.
Measat 1 91.5E 10982 V "CCTV 9" has started on , Mediaguard, PIDs 172/181.

ST 1 88E 3632 V "PTS" is now encrypted.
ST 1 88E 3632 V "Mega Movie Channel and FTV News Channel" are now encrypted.

PAS 10 68.5E 3744 V "TBN Africa" has started on , Fta, PIDs 1636/1635.


Plans for TVNZ's third channel revealed

From http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,2894336a11,00.html

TVNZ has finally come clean on its plans for a third channel. It is set to be a mix of re-runs of current affairs, local shows, minority programmes and live broadcasts from parliament - but TVNZ chief Ian Fraser denies it will be a dumping ground for charter programming.

Dubbed by Fraser as the "New Zealand content channel", it could be broadcast from the former Horizon Pacific frequency by the end of the year if given the go-ahead, he said.

Critics have suggested the channel's main purpose is to block competitors and pump up the broadcaster's local content hours, but Fraser denies this. He said the new channel, which is still in the early stages of development, would allow TVNZ "to extend its charter commitment, not to replace it".

He said plans included live broadcasts of parliament's question time and a "reasonable amount" of debate from the House. It was possible One News would be repeated later, along with other current affairs shows, he said. Minority shows such as Tagata Pasifika and Queer Nation would be replayed "much more into peak time" and successful local shows would get a second airing.

Fraser was forced to declare TVNZ's plans for the hotly contested UHF frequency after Mai TV, which was in negotiation over a joint proposal, went public about TVNZ backing out. Mai Media managing director Graham Pryor lambasted TVNZ for pulling out after more than two years of negotiations.

"It's (the new channel) not some rabbit which has suddenly been pulled out of a hat in order to stymie Mai TV," Fraser said.

The original proposal was for an Auckland regional channel, Fraser said, but that changed mid-negotiation into a youth channel which would be in direct competition with Maori Television. "It didn't make sense from TVNZ's perspective."

But Fraser admitted TVNZ may not have considered the third channel had parliament's standing orders committee not recommended that its proceedings be broadcast. Sky TV is also making a bid to broadcast from parliament.

But Christchurch Broadcasting School head Paul Norris, a former TVNZ news boss, was concerned TVNZ's plans were based on a UHF platform when it had a mandate to move toward digital broadcasting.

"Why are they thinking of doing this on old frequencies, when this would work very well on a digital platform?"

Insiders have also suggested the channel's transmitters are old and in need of upgrading, at considerable cost.

Fraser said TVNZ had digital plans under way but it would be some time until the public would see free-to-air digital TV. "It's massively expensive and something we are in talks with our competitors on," he said.

Meanwhile, Fraser and TVNZ executives are heading out on the road in an effort to combat bad publicity.

Fraser will lead a meeting in Hamilton later this month to hear what the community has to say about TVNZ. Dunedin gets its turn in July.

BCL to manage Warkworth Satellite Station

From Press Release: Broadcast Communications

BCL to manage Warkworth Satellite Station

Broadcast Communications Limited (BCL), a leading outsourcing partner to the communications industry, has signed an agreement with Telecom to manage its satellite telecommunications services currently provided through the Warkworth Satellite Station.

BCL Managing Director Geoff Lawson said as well as managing the day-to-day operations of the station, BCL would work with Telecom to prepare a development plan for future services, which could see the station being redeveloped in the future.

"We're delighted to have been chosen by Telecom to manage this important facility that provides vital telecommunications links to the Pacific, the Chatham Islands and Antarctica," he said.

Mr Lawson said he believed BCL's proven experience in managing telecommunications facilities, including the Maritime Safety Authority's Maritime Operations Centre, as well as the company's track record in designing and building telecommunications infrastructure, had helped secure the agreement.

Telecom's Programme Manager, International Allan Holden said the agreement would ensure Telecom could continue to enhance its satellite telecommunications services.

"Drawing on the experience and expertise of BCL will ensure the ongoing viability of our satellite services and means we'll be able to provide customers with a full range of services well into the future," Mr Holden said.

Mr Holden said as well as providing voice, data and Internet links to a number of Pacific Islands, the Chatham Islands and the Antarctic, the Warkworth satellite facilities have provided support to film making through Telecom's Film Network, assisting in the production of films such as The Lord of the Rings and The Last Samurai.

17-month delay for digital TV viewers

From http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2004/05/01/1083224649492.html

Subscribers waiting for Foxtel's digital pay TV service faced a 17-month delay, the union at the centre of a pay row between the operator and installation subcontractors said yesterday.

There was a backlog of at least 140,000 new and existing customers signed up for Foxtel Digital, but many were being told they would have to wait until September or October next year, the Communications, Electrical and Plumbing Union (CEPU) said.

To help overcome the backlog, Foxtel is now offering existing customers who want to update from their satellite and cable service to digital to do basic installations themselves.

As part of a do-it-yourself trial, customers follow instructions on a CD-ROM, which costs $49.95.

As well as growing consumer interest, a campaign to improve the pay and conditions of the 800-plus subcontractors hired to roll out the digital network is disrupting the installation timetable.

The CEPU has been negotiating with five separate companies, who have been contracted to install Foxtel services, to increase the wages of their technicians by at least 4 per cent each year.

CEPU telecommunications industry organiser Shane Murphy said the technicians were also angry that Foxtel management refused to attend a forum to address subcontractors' concerns.

"The roll out is stalling because of poor management planning," he said.

A Foxtel spokesman said the union's claims of a 17-month installation delay were incorrect.

"Depending on the area, there can be a wait, but nowhere near the figure the union is suggesting," the spokesman said.

(Craigs comment, a cdrom??? that costs $49.95???? what the hell????????)

NPC may go free to air

From http://www.stuff.co.nz/stuff/0,2106,2893745a1823,00.html

New Zealand's national game could be back on free-to-air television when Sanzar renegotiates its broadcasting deal with News Corporation Ltd.

At least, the domestic National Provincial Championship could be.

The Rugby Union and its Sanzar partners Australia and South Africa are putting the finishing touches to the package they will take to News Ltd when they look to renew their 10-year US$555 million ($892 million) broadcasting deal.

Rugby Union chief executive Chris Moller has said the package could be ready in weeks but will not discuss the content of what is being prepared for News Ltd.

However, The Dominion Post has spoken to people who were involved in the Rugby Union's working party on what to offer News Ltd, and who are now involved in planning how the deal will be pitched.

They have confirmed that dropping the NPC from the package is an option. South Africa's domestic Currie Cup competition and Australia's limited State of Union domestic games would also be culled.

To counter that, the proposal to News Ltd is likely to include a revamped Super 12 that would have 14 teams, one extra from both Australia and South Africa, and a longer playoff series.

The tri-nations series could remain relatively untouched, though the winner might be pitted against the top team from the Six Nations as Sanzar looks to increase the content it takes to News Ltd.

Increasing the content and jazzing up competitions is vital if Sanzar is to sign up to the sort of money it got in 1995.

No decision had been made about not having the NPC included in the News Ltd deal, but one highly placed source said dropping each country's domestic competition "was being seriously considered".

There are two reasons for that. News Ltd sees little value in the domestic competitions, as they are popular mainly in those countries and worth little when sold on.

One source, however, said the more important reason was that the New Zealand union in particular believed it could make more money by selling the NPC separately.

Though it is not a significant competition for News Ltd, the NPC is a big deal in New Zealand and should be keenly fought over by free-to-air companies TVNZ and TV3, and by pay TV company Sky Television.

The New Zealand union has an advantage over Australia and South Africa as New Zealand does not have anti-siphoning laws, which ensure some sports are shown free-to-air in those countries.

So it could force the three channels into a bidding war. It will have to be careful, however, it does not annoy Sky, which is sure to buy the main rights package to the Super 12 (or 14) and tests from News Ltd, and is a subsidiary of News Ltd.

The Rugby Union also needs to be wary that its plans to change the structure of the NPC and remove the All Blacks to play more tests do not lessen its appeal to the broadcasters.

TVNZ lost its rugby monopoly after Sky bought the New Zealand rights to the Super 12, tri-nations, NPC and in-bound tours from News Ltd when the 10-year Sanzar deal was signed in 1995.

The state broadcaster had the delayed rights for three years but lost those to TV3 in 1998. Since then TVNZ's rugby has consisted of a pauper's diet of sevens tournaments and the four-yearly World Cup.

TVNZ head of sport Denis Harvey said it was keen to get more rugby on free-to-air TV One but would want more than just the NPC.

"We'd be interested in a package that makes sense of the rugby calendar," Harvey said. "We would be interested in a total package."

Harvey conceded TVNZ's pockets were not as deep as Sky's but said it had a wider reach and was free. It will use those strengths to argue for a philosophical change in the Rugby Union, away from simply making money to taking the game to more people.

Sky has subscribers in about 600,000 of the 1.3 million homes in New Zealand.

Sky TV head of sport Kevin Cameron was not available for comment yesterday but has said that rugby is a key component in driving subscriptions.

SES Global interested in New Skies Satellites

From http://www.forbes.com/business/businesstech/newswire/2004/04/30/rtr1355654.html

NEW YORK, April 30 (Reuters) - SES Global <SESF.LU>, the world's largest satellite operator, would be interested in acquiring New Skies Satellites (nyse: NSK - news - people) if a deal could be worked out, an SES senior executive said on Friday.

But Dean Olmstead, chief executive of SES' U.S. division, SES Americom, stopped short of saying the company is in talks with Amsterdam-based New Skies.

"If they are for sale, we would look at them," Olmstead said in an interview. "We always look at assets."

New Skies, the No. 7 satellite operator with five "birds" in orbit, said on Thursday it was pursuing "various alternatives" that could result in "an extraordinary transaction."

New Skies declined to elaborate, but people familiar with the situation told Reuters the company is considering a merger or a take-private transaction, possibly with the backing of a private equity firm.

Analysts said New Skies would likely sell for a premium to its market capitalization of about $830 million prior to the the company's statement yesterday. The shares, which are traded on the New York Stock Exchange and the Amsterdam bourse, closed higher on Thursday after the disclosures, giving the company a market value of about $930 million. New Skies shares ended unchanged on Friday on the New York Stock Exchange.

New Skies "is more valuable as part of a network," Olmstead said. Likely buyers could also include Paris-based Eutelsat, the No. 4 satellite operator, or the No. 3 PanAmSat, which buyout firm Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co. agreed to purchase this month after a lively auction involving several groups of buyout funds.

New Skies officials couldn't be reached for comment on any SES interest.

Olmstead, whose Luxembourg-listed company is in the process of listing its shares in Paris, said he expects a continuation of consolidation in the industry, driven partly by private equity firms, such as those that bid on PanAmSat.

"Private equity firms have a high level of interest in the satellite business and the ability to acquire assets," he said. "Consolidation is a good thing and will continue. We don't expect PanAmSat to be the end of the story."

ISRO to use Dutch firm transponders for DD’s DTH

From http://www.deccanherald.com/deccanherald/may032004/c4.asp

Indian Space Research Organisation has signed a deal with a Dutch satellite firm to use its transponders for launching Doordarshan’s Direct to Home (DTH) service this year.

ISRO will use the multiple high-powered 36 MHz Ku-band transponders on the NSS-6 satellite of Netherlands-based New Skies Satellites for launching the service for Doordarshan, said to be the world’s largest free-to-air DTH service.

“These transponders will be used for DD’s DTH launch,” a ISRO official told PTI here today.

However, the cost of the multi-year lease of the transponders signed recently were not revealed.

The DTH service, expected to begin in June, will provide an initial bouquet of 30 free channels, 15 from Doordarshan and 15 from private broadcasters, as well as 20 radio channels throughout India, besides an additional transponder to be used for digital satellite newsgathering.

According to New Skies, the NSS-6 satellite covers South Asia, southern Africa, West Asia and Australia among others and has six high-performance Ku band beams that can deliver DTH services.

Private player Zee has already launched DTH service in the country.

ISRO’s yet-to-be launched next-generation satellites, INSAT-4A and INSAT-4B will have 12 Ku band transponders, but launch of a dedicated DTH satellite INSAT-4C with 18 Ku band transponders will take place in the next two years.

“We don’t believe in the principle of exclusivity”

From http://www.screenindia.com/fullstory.php?content_id=7990

After getting the exclusive telecast rights to the Athens Olympics, state broadcaster Doordarshan (DD) is keen to share the feed with private channels. But, only to an extent, and on commercial terms. DD director-general Naveen Kumar said, “I don’t believe in the principle of exclusivity. I would like to share (the Olympics feed) with others.” However, he’s quick to add, “I want other channels to build on this theory too.”

DD, which has been allowed to sub-license the Olympics feed within the country, would only offer highlights, medal tallies, and short clips to private channels. There’s no question of sharing the signals live.

Incidentally, DD and Dubai-based sport channel Ten Sports got into a legal tangle recently over sharing Indo-Pak cricket signals. While Ten had the exclusive rights to the Indo-Pak series, DD got to share the signal live, with the intervention of the Supreme Court.

DD has paid Rs 27 crore to Asia-Pacific Broadcasting Union (ABU) for the Olympics telecast rights. ABU had bought the bulk telecast rights for the region. The state broadcaster would spend another couple of crores for coverage of the Games, travel and stay of the 15-member DD crew.

As for returns, advertisers are gung-ho about Olympics, indicated Kumar. This is despite the general projection that India has no market for non-cricket events. “Olympics are different. They have a mass following,” the DG clarified.

To hardsell Olympics, DD claims that it’s going all out. It’s booking six lines of satellite: in case of a clash between two key events, DD would show one on DD-1 and the other on DD Sports. While DD Sports would show the Games for 24 hours, DD-1 will have three slots in a day. The number of hours to be devoted on DD-1 is not clear yet! As of now, DD’s talking of showing the opening and closing ceremony, hockey, soccer, athletics, tennis, shooting, weightlifting. With just about a two-hour time difference, opening and closing could be marketed as prime-time events in India. There would be innovations too, like having a regional window for the Games, packaging events with glamour, and creating special programmes around stars like long-jumper Anju George.

But Doodarshan is not talking figures yet. “We’ll be happy if we can recover the cost,” said Kumar. Although DD may be able to sell Olympics highlights to private channels, it’s not sure of making a killing out of it. As the DG said, “DD is not here for a commercial purpose. The aim is to reach as many people as we can.” He adds, “That doesn’t mean that we’ll allow other channels to make money with our feed.” Bottom line: DD wants its rights protected

Differences resolved, MEN back as FTV's India distributor

From http://www.indiantelevision.com/headlines/y2k4/apr/apr238.htm

MUMBAI: It's kiss and make up time looks like. French fashion channel FTV and estranged distribution partner Modi Entertainment Network today announced they were doing business together again.

A statement from FTV says it has ambitious and exciting plans for India having buried its differences with the Modis and is renewing its commitment to the market here.

“I am happy to say that we have very amicably resolved our differences with the Modis and are looking forward to a long and uninterrupted period of co-operation in making our position in India simply unassailable,” an official release quoted FTV bossman Michel Adam as saying. Echoing Adam’s sentiments, Modi Enterprises president Lalit Modi said: “We have already taken great strides in unleashing the unique appeal and potential of FTV. I believe the best is yet to come.”

FTV India with its soon-to-be-launched India-specific beam will now step-up its Indian content, by developing new shows and vignettes and showcasing Indian fashion, lifestyle and music. It will pump up its content for ‘Fashion India’ in the coming months with an additional focus on fashion in Indian cinema, heritage fashion and fashionable destinations, the release says.

FTV, which had turned free-to-air after it broke away from the Modis, is expected to return to the pay mode once the reworked distribution arrangement has set in, some time towards the end of the year.

Additionally, encouraged by the resounding success of its F. Bar & Lounges, in Bangalore and New Delhi FTV India, with the technical expertise and support of FTV, will soon introduce the concept to the cities of Hyderabad; Mumbai; Pune; Chandigarh, Calcutta, Goa, Chennai, and add a second location in New Delhi, within the next 12-18 months, the statement says. FTV is presently in the process of finalizing prospective franchisees for these cities.

FTV is, also, in the year ahead, looking at launching F. Cafés and F. Salons, across India strengthening its leadership in the Fashion category and delivering its promise of a “360 degree fashion experience”.

Globally, Fashion TV is the first worldwide 24-hour television network entirely dedicated to fashion, beauty and style. In just seven years, since its inception in 1997, Fashion TV has emerged as one of the five best-distributed channels in the world and an acknowledged medium of reference. It is present in 130 countries on 5 continents through 31 satellites and over 1000 cable systems. Broadcast by leading global media groups, such as Eutelsat, BSkyB and Astra C, Fashion TV has a confirmed reach of over 130 million households. Ftv.com, the on line version of the brand, is also the front-runner in its space, attracting over one million unique users per month.

SPE Networks to launch animation channel


YET another channel is heading for Indian cable and satellite homes. SPE Networks Asia has announced plans to launch its animation channel, Animax, in India on July 5.

Animax, which is being positioned as a general entertainment channel, will have customised programming for India in Hindi and English, and will target audiences of all ages, a press release from SPE said.

One Alliance, the distribution joint venture between Sony Entertainment Television and Discovery Networks, will distribute Animax across the country. India will mark the fifth Animax operation in Asia - three Animax Asia feeds servicing Taiwan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia, Animax Japan, and Japan's cable and satellite network. Currently, there are more than 5.5 million Animax homes in Japan and South-East Asia.

Animax will feature some of the popular Japanese animation series including AstroBoy; Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex, Samurai X and Arjuna, a story about a young archer girl.

TELE-satellite News - Number 18/2004 ­ 2 May 2004 -

A weekly roundup of global TV news sponsored by

TELE-satellite International

Editor: Branislav Pekic

Edited Apsattv.com Edition

A S I A & P A C I F I C


After just six weeks on the air, the new U.S.-funded
Arabic language TV channel Alhurra (Arabic for "The
Free One") has established itself as an important
source of news and information for adults over the age
of 15 in major cities across the Middle East,
according to recent telephone surveys conducted by
Ipsos-Stat, the French research company. The surveys
were conducted in Lebanon, Syria, United Arab
Emirates, Egypt, Kuwait, Jordan and Saudi Arabia in
early April and show that an average of 29 per cent of
adults had watched Alhurra in the previous week. Past
week viewing in Lebanon was 40 per cent; Syria 29 per
cent; UAE 19 per cent; Egypt 18 per cent; Kuwait 44
per cent; Jordan 37 per cent and Saudi Arabia 19 per
cent. The survey reported that in spite of increasing
anti-American attitudes and suspicion of the motives
of the United States in the region, 53 per cent of
Alhurra viewers consider its news "very or somewhat
reliable." Reliability figures were 70 per cent for
Saudi Arabia; 54 per cent for Lebanon; 40 per cent for
Egypt; 44 per cent for Jordan; 61 per cent for Kuwait;
65 per cent for UAE and 37 per cent for Syria.
Alhurra, launched on February 14, is a 24-hour news
and information network broadcast in Arabic. It and
can be seen in 22 countries throughout the region via
Arabsat and Nilesat, the same satellites used by all
major Arabic channels.



Pay-TV is quickly proving to be the driver of digital
TV in Australia, with Foxtel on April 28 revealing it
has signed 209,000 digital pay-TV customers since its
$600 million digital launch less than two months ago,
according to a report in The Australian. The
free-to-air TV industry's digital service has been
available for more than three years, but at the end of
February had converted only 291,000 TV homes to
digital. At the current rate, Foxtel Digital will take
just four months to surpass free-to-air TV's digital
rollout. Since January 2001, the free-to-air TV
industry has averaged a monthly conversion rate of
7650 homes. But Foxtel chief executive Kim Williams
said digital pay-TV was now installed in 75,000 homes,
up from 40,000 three weeks ago. Mr Williams told the
pay-TV industry's conference earlier this month that
Foxtel had secured 175,000 digital pay-TV sales,
meaning it has added 34,000 sales in three weeks.
Williams would not say what percentage of the 209,000
digital pay-TV customers were existing or new
subscribers. But he said Foxtel was signing an average
of 1000 new customers each week.


Regional pay-TV provider Austar United Communications
claims that more than a quarter of its subscribers
have already converted to its new digital service
which was launched alongside Foxtel's digital debut on
March 14. At a briefing for Austar's first quarter
results on April 29, chief executive John Porter said
that "the response to the new product has been
overwhelming" with 20 per cent of Austar's customer
base converting to the new digital services within
three weeks of the launch. He said that 115,000 of
Austar's 446,000 customers had now converted to the
digital package, representing more than one quarter of
its pay TV customers. Austar said it still had more
goodies in the pipeline as well, with key channels
such as Box Office, Sports Active and News Active yet
to be launched. Austar reported that subscriber
numbers increased 13,937 to 441,233 for the three
months ending March 31, and another 5000 were added
this month. It was not enough to prevent the firm from
slipping back into the red, reporting a $5.2 million
loss for the period, although it increased its revenue
by 11 per cent to $88.7 million, and earnings before
interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation increased
67 per cent to $21.1 million.


SBS wants the rights to Australian soccer but is not
interested in sharing them with another commercial
channel. SBS head of sport Les Murray confirmed on
April 27 that the network had held talks with
Australian Soccer Association CEO John O'Neill and ASA
commercial media manager John O'Sullivan. Murray is
aware the ASA is also talking to commercial channels
but has ruled out getting into a bidding war for the
rights. Seven had a 10-year deal and was paying soccer
$2 million a year for the rights. The ASA is likely to
get coverage on pay-TV as well as a free-to-air
channel and Murray said SBS would be comfortable to
work in that combination. SBS has already scored a
major coup by securing the full rights for the 2006
World Cup, as well as all FIFA events leading up to
2006, ranging from the Confederations Cup, the World
Club Championship and the 2005 World Youth
Championship in Holland.


The Australian Broadcasting Authority has released
terms of reference for an investigation into 'adult
services' being broadcast into Australia from overseas
via satellite. The ABA has received complaints
concerning the apparent availability of 'pornography'
on these adult services. 'The broadcasting of program
material that has been refused classification, or has
been classified as 'X' by the Office of Film and
Literature Classification is prohibited,' said
Professor David Flint, ABA Chairman. 'A formal
investigation will enable the ABA to consider all
relevant material and reach a view on whether there
has been a breach of the Broadcasting Services Act.'
The 'adult services' being investigated include:
Free-XTV and Backroom, Sexz.TV and BlueKiss. The ABA
will seek further information from service providers
before finalising a report. The terms of reference are
available on the ABA website. The first targets of the
ABA's investigation are the satellite carriers,
NewSkies, which is headquartered in the Netherlands
and AsiaSat, a Hong Kong-based company. They carry a
range of satellite TV services for clients and don't
necessarily have anything to do with the content of
them. ABA has written asking them to identify the
companies behind Free-X TV, BlueKiss and Sexz.TV.



Hong Kong's Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB) plans
to spend at least US$38.5 million building facilities
for its launch of digital broadcasting in 2007, The
Standard newspaper has reported. The government wants
Asia Television Limited (ATV) and TVB to launch
digital services by the end of 2006, which will run in
tandem with the existing analogue broadcasting until
analogue is phased out in 2008. However, both
operators are pressing for compatible systems in Hong
Kong and the mainland to ensure the flow of content.
Secretary for Commerce, Industry and Technology John
Tsang said the government was flexible on the schedule
for digital broadcasting, saying it could be later
than 2006, the original schedule. He expected China to
choose its system in 2005, so that the service could
run smoothly for the Olympic Games in Beijing in 2008.
The Hong Kong government intends to offer five new
digital frequencies, with one reserved for ATV and
TVB, replacing their four existing analogue channels.
One digital frequency can carry four analogue
channels. TVB is also interested in applying for
another two new digital frequencies for
high-resolution telecasting.



MTV Networks Asia has inked a distribution deal with
The One Alliance in India, bringing MTV and
Nickelodeon to 40 million homes in the country. MTV is
the first music network, and Nickelodeon the first
children's channel, to launch on the platform, which
is a joint venture of Sony Entertainment Television
India (SET India) and Discovery Networks India. The
channels join a bouquet of 8 networks, including
Sony's SET, MAX and AXN; Discovery and Animal Planet;
and HBO, NDTV India and NDTV 24X7. Meanwhile,
Nickelodeon India said on April 28 that it will launch
a daily 12-hour Hindi-dubbed programming feed to run
08:00-20:00. In addition, the channel has been
rechristened Nick. The dubbed line-up goes on air
beginning Saturday. The One Alliance is a joint
distribution platform that includes Sony Entertainment
Television, Discovery, MTV, Nickelodeon and others
that rival STAR India's multichannel service. MTV
India handles marketing for Nickelodeon India, which
first introduced a dual audio feed in Hindi for four
hours a day last year and increased it to eight hours
early this year.



Astro All Asia Networks will raise pay-TV rates next
month, a move that may add RM83 million to its annual
sales given its subscriber base of 1.39 million people
at the end of January. The pay-TV operator said in the
May edition of its viewers' guide that it would raise
monthly subscription rates by RM5 after May 24 "to
improve the variety of programmes and channels.''
Astro expects to "deliver over a hundred channels by
next year, courtesy of a new Measat 3 satellite.''
Astro, controlled by tycoon Ananda Krishnan, is trying
to attract more viewers in Malaysia and neighbouring
Brunei to the channels it shows through its set-top
boxes. It offers channels such as ESPN, through which
it screens English Premier League football, Time
Warner Inc's HBO, and News Corp's Star Movies. The
company is also the cable distributor for Bloomberg
Television in Malaysia. Astro reported net income of
RM12.3 million for the year ended January 31, as an
expanding economy helped it sign up 45% more
subscribers from a year ago. Sales were at RM1.42
billion. Ananda Krishnan also controls Measat Global,
which operates two Boeing Co-made satellites that
lease transmission capacity to Astro and mobile phone
company Maxis Communications.



TVNZ is bailing out of its previously lucrative

satellite transmission business. The April 28
announcement that the state broadcaster was closing
Satellite Services comes just months after TVNZ signed
the subsidiary up to an international alliance. The
deal with Intelsat Global Sales and Marketing was
hailed last September as a potentially
multimillion-dollar revenue earner. But TVNZ has now
said Satellite Services was the victim of a worldwide
recession in the satellite carriage business, which
had caused "enormous price pressure and major change"
in the industry. Although exact figures have never
been separated out in TVNZ's books, Satellite Services
generated millions of dollars of revenue during the
1990s organising "occasional use" and one-off
international satellite links for other broadcasters
involved with major sporting and other international
events. Last year's Intelsat deal was aimed at giving
broadcasting customers access to a global network of
satellite and terrestrial infrastructure complemented
by a portfolio of television broadcast services. The
alliance was touted at the time as having the
potential to quadruple Satellite Service's revenue. A
TVNZ spokeswoman said that Intelsat was working with
the company to end the alliance amicably and



Nine persons, most of them expatriates, have been
detained by the authorities on charges of piracy of
pay-TV channels. They are allegedly guilty of having
distributed pay channels in contravention of the
Ministry of Information's regulations. The information
was made public at a symposium organized by the
ministry on copyright laws and related aspects.
Culture and Information Minister Dr. Fouad Al-Farsy
stressed the need to protect original works and
penalize copyright violators. He pointed out that many
commercial entities such as housing compounds, hotels
and clubs were illegally distributing satellite pay-TV


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