Archive for September, 2010
XStreamHD has teamed with Nationwide Market Group to enable Nationwide dealers to market and install XStreamHD in homes across the country. XStreamHD streams “pre-fetched” HD entertainment directly to the home via satellite and currently has a deal with Lionsgate for content. Nationwide Market Group bills itself as the nation’s largest buying and marketing organization with approximately 8k storefronts. Soft sales of the service should start at the end of this month. — A new iPad app from Disney and Nielsen seeks to link the device to the TV making ABC’s new series “My Generation” a two-screen/multitasking/social media experience. The My Generation Sync iPad App is already available in the app store; the series premiers next week.
Gov’t & Reg: The American Television Alliance is in DC to tell lawmakers that broadcasters’ demands for ever higher fees could put independent networks at risk as MVPDs seek ways to economize. The broadcasters have an unfair advantage thanks to carriage mandates, they say. — Play it again, Sam … the Coalition for Competition in Media wants Congress to hold one more hearing on the Comcast/NBC-U deal. Filings since the last hearing have added “new dimensions to the discussion,” says the group which includes Bloomberg, the Media Access Project, the National Organization for Women and the Writers Guild of America.
Over There: The BBC-led hybrid TV venture Project Canvas will go forward as “YouView.” The “buy once” subscription-free service plans to launch in the first half of 2011 with catch-up TV, on-demand services and internet content. — Austria will get a new DTH platform on Oct. 14 as M7 Group SA begins offering a 14 channel service for €9.90 ($12.95)/month or €7.90 ($10.34)/year with a a 12-month contract. The group plans to add HD next year.
Advertising: National ad markets are holding strong despite continuing economic woes, notes Macquarie Securities’ Andrew Kim. “The strength in national TV ads continues to meet or exceed our expectations,” he notes. The trend, he adds, keeps News Corp, Time Warner, CBS and Disney in place as key “Outperform” selections.
Popularity: 25% [?]
Want to watch satellite TV? May need planning permission in historic Avenues (UK)
RESIDENTS with newly installed satellite dishes in one area of Hull, UK, face having to apply for planning permission to keep them up.
The move in the Avenues area of the city has been agreed by councillors after a campaign by the Avenues And Pearson Park Residents’ Association.
Association members claimed the historic Conservation Area was being ruined by an increasing number of dishes being installed on the front of houses without planning consent.
Now, members of Hull City Council’s planning committee have decided to write to residents with recently installed dishes informing them they need to apply for official permission to keep them in place.
Each application is expected to cost a householder about £150.
Committee chairman Craig Woolmer said the council was trying to strike a balance between helping residents and fulfilling its own statutory obligations to ensure planning policies in Conservation Areas were followed. He said: “Enforcement is this case will be a last resort.
“We want to work with the residents, advise them what needs to be done and help them with the planning process.”
Councillor Woolmer said ignorance of the fact that the Avenues was a Conservation Area would be no excuse.
He said: “It has been a Conservation Area longer than I have been alive.
“We are not looking to be heavy-handed on this, but no one can really say they didn’t know it was Conservation Area when they moved in.”
The new policy is expected to apply to all satellite dishes installed in the area over the past four years.
It will also apply to new dishes being put up in future.
The committee heard that not all householders would be required to apply for retrospective planning permission.
Instead, each case will be judged on its merits with the option of moving a dish to another part of the building being explored with each resident involved.
Some dishes could also be allowed to stay where they are depending on their location.
Association member Bob Sandham, who carried out his own survey of satellite dishes in the area, said he was pleased with the decision.
He said: “I estimate there are about 90 houses affected by this.
“Although we as an association have been lobbying for this, it’s actually something the council is required to do in Conservation Areas.
“We have actually been asking them to do this since 2002.”
Residents in the Avenues and Pearson Park Conservation Area will initially have three months to respond to the council over the requirement to
apply for planning permission once they are contacted by the council.
Councillors have also agreed to review the progress of the initiative after three months.
The policy will not apply to other conservation areas in the city.
Popularity: 16% [?]
Luxembourg-based international DTH operator M7 Group SA will launch a new satellite platform for Austria in conjunction with ORS, the facilities company of Austrian public broadcaster ORF, on October 14.
The new platform will initially offer 14 channels from Sony, ProSiebenSat.1, RTL and MTV, but at least four additional channels are expected before year’s end. Subscription will cost €9.90 monthly, or €7.90 when viewers sign a 12-month contract. The new platform will be available on the Astra position at 19.2 degrees East. The plan is to also launch a dedicated HD bouquet during 2011.
Austriasat’s complete line-up will consist of AXN, Animax, kabelone classics, Sat.1 Comedy, RTL Living, MTV Music, MTV Rocks, MTV Dance, MTV Hits, VH-1, KidsCo, Hustler TV, Marcel Dorcel TV and Alpenglühen (“so sexy ist die Heimat”). People with the Austriasat smart card will automatically have access to the Austrian free-to-view bouquet of ORF, ORF2, ATV, Puls TV and Austria 9 TV.
During 2011, Austriasat will launch an HD bouquet. “We want to be the largest HDTV provider by the middle of next year,” said Olaf Castritius, MD, M7, in a statement. “HDTV should be available to our customers ‘cheap and easy’, according to the price and sales philosophy of our company.” The platform’s goal is to reach 100,000 subscribers by December, 2013.
The M7 Group is active with DTH platforms in The Netherlands (CanalDigitaal Satelliet), Belgium (TV Vlaanderen and TéléSat) and Luxemborug (TéléSat). ORS already operates the satellite services for ORF and is responsible for the smart card handling of their smart cards.
Popularity: 10% [?]
Galaxy 15 ‘Zombiesat’ Still Alive after expected off date
Spaceflight Now – September 15, 2010
Intelsat says its out-of-control Galaxy 15 communications satellite did not power down as expected in late August and will continue threatening interference with broadcasting signals from other spacecraft for the foreseeable future.
Galaxy 15 has not responded to commands from the ground since April, but the craft continues blaring powerful communications signals as it drifts through geosynchronous orbit more than 22,000 miles above Earth.
There is no threat of the satellite colliding with another craft.
Engineers at Intelsat and Orbital Sciences Corp., the builder of Galaxy 15, expected the errant satellite’s reaction wheels to become saturated with momentum by late August or early September.
The reaction wheels control the satellite’s orientation in space, and engineers expected Galaxy 15 would lose its lock on the sun and drain its batteries when the reaction wheels failed.
But Intelsat officials say the “off-point” did not occur, and now Galaxy 15 is in an eclipse season where the Earth blocks sunlight from reaching the solar panels for a few minutes each day.
Intelsat does not expect Galaxy 15 to turn itself off during the eclipse season, based on how momentum builds up on the satellite, according to Dianne VanBeber, the company’s vice president of investor relations and communications.
Galaxy 15 will exit the annual fall eclipse season in early October.
“The flight engineers are back at the drawing boards to determine another estimate for the off-point,” VanBeber told Spaceflight Now in an email.
Galaxy 15 is moving east along the equator at less than two-tenths of a degree of longitude per day.
Because it continues to be powered, Galaxy 15 will fly near another communications satellite while uncontrollably transmitting powerful C-band signals.
The encounter due for Sept. 21 is with Mexico’s Satmex 5 satellite positioned at 116.8 degrees west longitude.
Intelsat has managed six flybys of other C-band satellites since they lost control of Galaxy 15, including four of the company’s own broadcasting satellites positioned over North America.
Galaxy 15 has also sailed past AMC 11, an SES World Skies high-definition television broadcasting satellite providing core programming to millions of viewers in North America.
The craft flew by the Canadian Anik F3 communications satellite operated by Telesat on Sept. 9.
If Galaxy 15 is still turned on, it will approach the Satmex 6 and Anik F2 C-band satellites of Mexico and Canada by mid-October. Galaxy 15 does not affect strictly Ku-band communications platforms.
“The fact that you haven’t heard about channels lost or interference is the proof that we have been able to avoid issues operationally,” said Nick Mitsis, an Intelsat spokesperson. “I don’t want to underplay that.”
Intelsat has worked closely with other satellite operators to avoid interference that could lead to cable or satellite television interruptions across the United States, Canada and Latin America.
“We have a team of engineers that have become experts at turning traffic and implementing a number of other in-flight tricks to avoid interference,” Mitsis said.
According to Mitsis, predicting the off-point of Galaxy 15 is an inexact science because engineers are not receiving data from the spacecraft.
Officials believe the anomaly in April may have been caused by a solar flare that zapped the satellite’s electronics.
When Galaxy 15 does power itself down, officials say there is a small chance they could reboot the satellite and recover its functionality.
Popularity: 10% [?]
Many people constantly ask us via Email what is the best HD or SD Free to Air Receiver that is on the market, and that is easy to use.
There are many FTA Receivers out there, that used to be solid, such as the Pansat 9200 but times have changed. Here is our GoodFTA list of the top 5 HD FTA Receivers.
1 – i-Link 9500 HD! Currently the King of HD FTA Receivers, i-link has quietly built up a tremendous loyal following in the free to air world. I-Link first cut its teeth with their 210/220 series of Receivers and things caught on like wild fire from there! They soon released their follow up 9000 and 9000 Plus and then six months ago their 9500 HD model. Currently it is our top pick of the best you can get. It has a IKS adapter built in. This model will cost around $400.00
2 – Sonicview 8000 HD! The king of last generation of FTA Receivers maintains the number two Position! It is reliable and has a great EPG! If you have the v2 version of this receiver with a built in fan, you are in for good times. You need to purchase an IKS adapter for optimal use, such as the iHub, or NewLink. You can normally buy this receiver bundled with an 8PSK and iHub/Newlink for around $450.00
1 – i-Link 9000 Plus
With a built in ethernet adapter and great hardware this is currently the best standard definition satellite receiver you can get. Its priced around $220.00 and has a great EPG. The unit itself is sleek and black and fits well with any home entertainment center. Its service for any FTA channels are reliable and little to no freezing. The IKS adapter with this one, is built right in! No dongles needed.
2 – Limesat Ultra PVR
Although Limesat is the new kid on the block, their receivers are getting peoples attention. With the ability to get the most channels in FTA, this is a great bet. It also has a built in ethernet device, so you do not need a dongle for it. Its EPG is very solid, with the ability to have genres. SO if you want to browse all the news channels, or sports you can do so with ease. This unit has a built in IKS Dongle, so you do not need to purchase one. The unit will set you back on average of $250.00
3 – CNX Nano 2
Conaxsat has been around the block or two! They first came onto the scene about 2 years ago, with their CNX Mini, it came in white, and had some of the greatest picture quality in all of FTA. It released the follow up Duo and Trio a few months later. The Duo was a standard PVR and the Trio had the ability to play DIVX files, so you could watch movies via your USB drive from their unit. When CNX decided with go with the network and IKS route they released the CNX Nano and 5 months later the CNX Nano 2. The Nano 2 is the most refined CNX product ever. It functions has a PVR and has the best picture quality in FTA for standard definition receivers. It also has a built in IKS Dongle, so you do not need to buy anything extra. The Price is around $200.00.
Popularity: 23% [?]
Do you want to know whether satellite TV for PC technology really works? I was initially very skeptical about this method, even hearing many people talk about since I had already been subscribed to my cable TV service for years.
After researching deeper into this technology, I found that there were 2 main methods of watching. One was with PCTV cards, while the other one that I was really keen to try was the Satellite TV for PC software.
1. What Are PCTV Cards?
These devices have the ability to let your PC run like a TV and play TV programs on a separate window while your computer is running other processes at the same time. Your PC becomes capable of receiving and decoding satellite television signals when you have a PCTV card installed.
PCTV cards exist in 2 forms, internal and external. The external one is connected to a PC via USB port, while the internal one will require a user to open his or her CPU casing and insert it on the motherboard.
2. What Is Satellite TV for PC Software?
This is the method that I eventually chose, because it is more affordable and easier to setup. Basically, it does everything that a PCTV card can do without the need for hardware equipment. In fact, one can expect to find even more channels with this method.
3. Where To Download Satellite TV for PC?
Before you decide to get this program, you should make sure that your operating system is Windows based, and you have a broadband internet connection. These are the minimum requirements of the software.
Popularity: 7% [?]