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[Sun, 03 Mar 2024]


"Veni, Vidi, Video."


May 08 in a snapshotMonday 02 June 2008


- Studio Universal will end its transmissions on Sky Italia on May 31.
- QVC has gone HD. So far in US only but SES confirmed it will be adding QVC HD the Astra line up soon.
- Two German regional channels TV Mittelrhein and Westerwald prepare to broadcast from Astra 19 ° E, 12.246 GHz V (SR 27,500, FEC 3/4).
- BBC’s free to air package Freesat has launched on Astra 28°E.
- MGM Networks has signed a deal with Sky Italia introducing MGM Channel to Italy.
- Eurosport confirmed plans to launch HDTV channel on all three digital satellite platforms in Poland
- NBC Universal Global Networks has announced the launch the Universal Channel and Sci Fi channel in Russia.
- Miniweb have confirmed launch of ‘TV Key’ service on the Sky Digital.
- SES Astra has launched a new HD bouquet for Dutch CanalDigitaal and Belgian TV Vlaanderen. The new HDTV package is set to broadcast from 23.5°E.
- Hungarian HD Platform Kft has launched high def platform Hello HD


- Great month for Conax, the conditional access manufacturer acquired Secustream Technologies AS (manufacturer of anti pirate solutions for interactive TV) and secured deals to provide encryption for Turksat, upcoming Hellas Sat HD and new Hungarian pay tv platform Hello HD.
- In surprising move Hamburg District Court, following request from Premiere, issued injunction banning so called patchable free-to-air receivers capable of decrypting pay TV channels via internet downloadable key files, prohibited their sale throughout Germany and ordered Zehnder , an importer of far eastern equipment to pay damages to the tune of quarter million Euros.
- Humax has licensed S&T's Redkey 2 MHEG middleware engine for its Freesat products in the UK.

Names, ranks and numbers

- Kristina Zimmermann has become director of TPS Star (Canal Plus Group)
- NBC Universal has appointed Marin Irusta as senior vice-president, programming and acquisitions.
- Vilma Marciuleviciute has been named as CEO of Viasat Baltics.
- Intelsat has appointed Kay Sears as president of Intelsat General
- Tom Mockridge, Chief Executive of Sky Italia, has been appointed to the role of Chief Executive, European Television within News Corp.


- Premiere has posted a net loss of EUR28.1m in the first quarter of 2008, and predictably blamed piracy for most of it.
- Spanish satellite operator Hispasat is celebrating its best financial result ever. They made a €35.7 million profit last year, the sum so overwhelming it took them this long to count the money.
- Spanish publishing group Prisa took over paytv group Sogecable.

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NDS found guilty of hacking Nagra encryptionFriday 16 May 2008

From Kudelski Group Press Release:

"The lawsuit filed by EchoStar and NagraStar (a joint-venture between EchoStar and the Kudelski Group) against NDS in California has come to a close. EchoStar and NagraStar won a jury verdict in its satellite piracy case against NDS Group. EchoStar and NagraStar alleged that NDS had hacked into its encrypted satellite TV broadcast signals. The federal jury in Santa Ana, California found Wednesday that NDS violated federal and state laws prohibiting piracy. EchoStar and NagraStar also prevailed on NDS counterclaims that alleged that plaintiffs had obtained confidential trade secret information through improper means. Plaintiffs are also entitled to recover their legal fees from NDS. However, the jury awarded EchoStar only symbolic statutory and compensatory damages."

More in detail

The case, featuring spectacular list of allegations including revelations about NDS employing specialists to break and publish codes as well as code algorithms on the internet, lead to one of the smallest compensations ever awarded in satellite piracy cases - damages of $45.69...

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Freesat, the FTA package from BBC and ITV goes liveTuesday 6 May 2008

Freesat, the new free to air digital satellite joint venture between the BBC and ITV has launched today, on May 6th 2008.

Broadcasting via orbital position of 28.2 degrees East, Freesat offers over 80 free digital TV, HD and radio channels previously available only via Sky platform.
Current list include all regional versions of BBC One, BBC Two, BBC Three and BBC Four, ITV1, ITV2, ITV3 and ITV4, both S4C channels, Channel 4, E4, More4 and Film4 including one hour shifted versions where available, BBC News and Al-Jazeera English, childrens channels CBBC, CBeebies and CiTV, music channels Chartshow and The Vault plus BBC HD and in the nearest future ITV HD.

Freesat plans to expand to 200 channels by the end of the year.

Freesat also offers three types of official set top boxes - a standard definition receiver, an HD receiver and an HD integrated digital TV with Freesat built-in (IDTV). Available STBs are made by Goodmans, Bush, Grundig and Humax. IDTV LCD is to be made by Panasonic and will be available in June. Set Top Box prices start from £49.

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April 08 in a snapshotThursday 1 May 2008

New channels:

- Eurosport 2 channel has launched on German platform Premiere.
- Classic cartoon channel Boomerang (part of Turner Broadcasting) has been added to line-up of Middle East platform ADD
- Austrian ORF has launched the first German high definition channel from a public broadcaster.
- Rush HD (from Voom) has been added to UK and Irish line-up on BSkyB
- Kids channel Jetix (Disney) signed deal with French CanalSat.
- Scandinavian Viasat has launched its 24 hour Hollywood movie channel TV1000 Premium on Estonian, Latvian and Lithuanian markets (with additional Russian subtitles).
- NBC Universal launched Sci Fi channel and the Universal Channel in Romania.
- News channel BBC World has officially changed its name to BBC World News.

New faces:

- HBO Central Europe has appointed Ondrej Zach as vice-president, programming and acquisitions.
- Norwegian conditional access firm Conax has appointed Berit Svendsen as CEO.
- Kids entertainment broadcaster Jetix Europe has appointed Daniel Wineman as director of original series.
- Emmanuel Florent (formerly CEO of TPS) has joined Canal Plus in a development role alongside group president.

New birds:

- On April 29 Amos-3 satellite has began its journey towards orbital position of 4 degrees after launch from Baikonur in Kazakhstan onboard a Zenit-3SLB rocket.
- SES Astra has moved Sirius 2 satellite from its former position at 5 degrees East to 31.5 degrees East and renamed Astra 5A. Its 26 transponders will now target central and Eastern Europe.
- Thor 5 (Telenor) has become operational at 1 degree West.
- SES Americom has declared AMC-14 satellite destined for 77 degrees West a complete loss, after failed launch on 14 March and evaluated there were no viable options to reposition the satellite from low transfer orbit.

New hardware:

- Pace Micro Technology has completed takeover of set top box manufacturing arm of Philips (Philips STB and CS Business).
- New Hungarian pay-TV operator HelloHD ( operating from Eurobird 9 satellite at 9 degrees East) selected Advanced Digital Broadcast (ADB) to supply HD DVR satellite receivers to its customers.
- German pay TV broadcaster Premiere has chosen NDS (encryption used for Sky platform among others) and VideoGuard conditional access system to replace currently compromised simulcrypt Irdeto and Nagravision systems across its satellite channels in the near future.
- EchoStar and encryption provider NagraStar began legal action against NDS Group in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles seeking 1 billion USD in damages. The two companies claim NDS is allegedly behind publishing and distributing methods on how to compromise Dish Network conditional access card technology...


- Italian commercial provider Mediaset and public broadcaster RAI were reported discussing plans to launch free digital satellite package, similar to BBC’s Freesat.

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A week, or so, in a snapshot Monday 05 February 2007

Bragging rights:
- Canal+ reported the highest number of new subscribers since 1987 - a 646,000 viewers joined French platform creating total of 5.14 million subscribers. Reported revenue of the Canal+ Group for 2006 were €3,630 million. Mon Dieu!

- BSkyB is also well chuffed after doing its sums as they announced the highest subscriber growth in six years. Sky Digital services can now be found in 8.441 million homes and businesses. Whooping 2.13 million people now use Sky+ Digital Video Recorder while dictionaries noted dawn of the verb - “to skyplus” (something). Being solely British equivalent to American “to tivo” (a program) the verb is now a commonly used across entire nation. Operators focus lies this year with Sky HD sales...

Bad seeds:
- On January 29th AEPOC - or European Association for the Protection of Encrypted Works and Services (Association Europeenne pour la Protection des Euvres et services Cryptes) as it's mouthfully known to the members celebrated ten years of its fight with Pay TV piracy the annual Anti Piracy Symposium in Geneva. Along with usual shoulder tapping and hands rubbing the members called for an(...) Read more...

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