Monday, 27 April 2015

Telecom operators slash call rates to quake-hit Nepal; Airtel pitches free calls

To give some relief to earthquake hit Nepal, some telecom operators have slashed their call rates while some have freed calls made to their network in Nepal, where over 2,000 people were killed after a devastating earthquake on April 24.

Sudipto Chowdhuri promoted as Executive President-Sales: India TV

India TV, a Hindi news channel based in Noida, has promoted Sudipto Chowdhuri to Executive President–Sales. He joined the company in January 2013 as Country Head- Advertising Sales position.

‘Darshanam’ a devotional channel launched in Telugu

On seeing popularity of devotional channels in Telugu since last few years, 6TV Group has decided to launch a new devotional channel named ‘Darshanam’ this week. The group has already 6TV and 6TV Telangana in its bouquet.
Apart from the regular programming and discourses, the new channel acquired 300 mythological movies and five serials and two animation programmes, Yeleti Suresh Reddy, Chariman of 6TV Group said at the launch. 

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Comcast, Time Warner Cable merger deal ended in smoke

Comcast, a U.S.-based international mass media company has reportedly called off its $45.2 billion attempt to buy Time Warner Cable, an American cable telecommunications company. 

Letv‘s superphones ready to hit Indian market by the end of 2015

Letv, China’s biggest and fastest growing video streaming provider, is ready to launch its three competitively-priced high-end ‘superphones’ — the Le 1, 1 Pro and Max — for the home market in Beijing.

Kalaignar TV directors’ records on ROC being investigated: CBI

The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is probing the records of the Registrar of Companies (ROC) on directors of Kalaignar TV to know whether these records were tampered or not. The Kalaignar TV allegedly received Rs 200 crore for A. Raja, then Telecom Minister to allot 2G licence.

178 applications for new TV channels are waiting for approval

Clarifying the situation of new TV Channels, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, MoS I&B minister revealed that total 178 applications have been lying pending with government since 2012.

Tata Sky’s customized packs to target Indian southern market

Direct to home (DTH) service provider Tata Sky has rolled out customized packs called My 99 pack, which will specifically target Southern markets in India. 

Discovery Kids Packs in Masti, Fun and Adventure with Desi Dhamaal

This summer vacation watches DESI DHAMAAL on Discovery Kids. DESI DHAMAAL will air every Monday to Friday from 12 Noon – 1 PM only on Discovery Kids.

Cartoon Network lines up new shows for summer

Cartoon Network is ready to entertain kids this summer as it will launch a new Cartoon Network Original (CNO) series called Uncle Grandpa, premiering a new Bayblade series as well as the final installment of the Kid Krrish movie franchise.

Arris to acquire Pace for $2.1 bn

Arris Group Inc., a global innovator in IP, video and broadband technology, agreed to buy British set-top box maker Pace Plc for about $2.1 billion.

Rohit kumar leaves Zee Media and joins Focus News

Rohit Kumar, former VP, marketing, Zee News, has joined Focus News as senior vice president, marketing, research and regulatory.

MIB to settle Mirchi-Oye FM deal within 2 weeks

The selling deal of Oye FM to Entertainment Network India Ltd is ready to be settled soon as the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) is going to take a decision within the next two weeks. Noting this, the Delhi High Court has disposed off the writ petition filed by TV Today. 

Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia to operate separately on software driven products

Alcatel-Lucent, a French telecom equipment maker  which has been recently taken over by Finnish Nokia, said that both the entities will be operate their business separately and competing on software driven products.

ETV Kannada to be renamed as Colors Kannada on 26 April

ETV Kannada will now entertain its viewers with new name as Colors Kannada from 26 April. This renaming process will complete Viacom18 initiative of rebranding Prism TV’s five ETV regional general entertainment channels (GEC) under the brand of Colors.

TDSAT asked BECIL to audit God Father Communication’s headend

The Broadcast Engineering Consultants India Ltd (BECIL) has been asked by Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) to audit Amritsar based MSO God Father Communication’s headend at its own cost and to submit report within in three weeks from the date of receipt of the order, on whether MSO’s system is compliant with statutory norms or not.

Thursday, 23 April 2015

Bloomberg & Hyundai Motor sign 3 yrs deal for a global television program

Bloomberg TV India, a 24-hour English-language business and financial news has signed a three-year partnership deal with Hyundai Motor Company to create a new global television series based on exciting art personalities throughout the world. Brilliant Ideas, a programme starting in May will be air on Bloomberg TV and profile a living contemporary artist in each half hour episode, with 25 episodes each year over three years.

DD signed MOU with NCERT to share its archival content for educational DVDs

Doordarshan, has tied-up with National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) to share and disseminate its archival content in the form of educational DVDs.

TDSAT rejects Star India's applications against Indusind, Goldstar

The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has rejected four miscellaneous applications of Star India relating to five cases against it to the effect that an endorsement made by the petitioners at the end of agreements left ‘the door open to the petitioners to walk out of any clause.’

Net neutrality reaches CCI doors

The Competition Commission of India (CCI), has drawn its attention towards net neutrality issue. On 21 April, the CCI said it is looking into possible abuse of dominance by telecom and Internet companies. Some service providers like Airtel have tied up with certain mobile apps and websites to offer free access. This has generated a fear that it will harm those who are outside this ring. 

Tuesday, 21 April 2015

IAA Leadership Awards: I Venkat of Eenadu inducted into Hall of Fame

The International Advertising Association’s (IAA) India Chapter awarded Times Group’s Vineet Jain as the media person of the year at the third IAA Leadership Awards. 

Janam TV Launched in Kochi on 19 April

Janam TV, a Malayalam entertainment-cum-news channel, has been launched in Kochi on 19 April. Janam, which means ‘people’, is supported by an investment of Rs 50 crore raised from around 5,000 shareholders, who contributed between Rs 25,000 to Rs 5 lakh.

Applicants’ training of FM Radio Phase III to start

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has declared that M/s C1 India private limited, e-auctioneer and auction adviser to the Ministry of I&B, GOI has arranged for training of all applicants of first batch of FM Radio Phase III on 22/4/2015 (Wed) at 2.30PM at DAVP Conference Room No. 256, Soocha Bhawan, Lodhi Road, C.G.O Complex, New Delhi 110003.

Ketan Dixit seeks quashing of FIR against him for screening ‘India’s Daughter’

Ketan Dixit, a 21 year old activist arrested for screening banned documentary "India's Daughter" in Delhi has approached the Delhi High Court seeking quashing of the FIR lodged against him. He said that he was illegally arrested and detained which "clearly violates" his rights under the Constitution. 

Saturday, 18 April 2015

Videocon Telecom plans to deliver a consolidated Top line Revenue of 3000 Cr in FY 2015-16

Videocon Telecom, the versatile, friendly and dynamic telecom brand of the Indian conglomerate Videocon Group announced its aggressive growth plans to become a preferred National Operator. As part of its network expansion drive, the telco announced 2489 new cell sites and 231 new exclusive stores in existing circles. The telco also plans to deliver a consolidated Top line Revenue of 3000 Cr in FY 2015-16 including its GSM business, NLD/ILD and Punjab Wireline business. The Telco is also planning to invest Rs 300-350 Cr in current financial year. The telco aims at taking up the data contribution to 15% of Gross Revenue by end of FY2015-16. Achieving 19% incremental Customer market share in FY 2014-15, the telco reported a subscriber base of 1 Cr in its 4 operational as on March 2015.

Reliance Jio got codes to provide 4G services

Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd has been provided Mobile Switching Centre Code, Mobile Country Code and Mobile Network Code to roll out its 4G services using Long-Term Evolution (LTE) in 800MHz, 1800MHz and 2300MHz bands through an integrated ecosystem by the government.

Minutes of 40th and 41st Open House Meeting held with MSOs

In 40th and 41st Open House Meeting (OHM) held on 31 March and 7 April respectively, the following MSOs security clearance is awaited from Home Ministry.

Digi NMN’s application rejected while 11 new MSO licences issued: MIB

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has rejected the application of Digi Navi Mumbai Network (DNMN), a Joint venture of Digicable Network India, for permanent multi-system-operator (MSO) as the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has not granted security clearance to the company. DNMN had filed an application in August 2014.

Friday, 17 April 2015

Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent merger nailed to become an innovation leader

On 14 April 2015, Nokia, a Finnish company confirmed that it was in merger talks with Alcatel-Lucent, a French telecommunications equipment company. On 15 April, Nokia officially announced that it had agreed to purchase Alcatel-Lucent for €15.6 billion. Alcatel was merged with Lucent Technologies in 2006.

Eros International ties up with Asianet Broadband for movie streaming service

Eros International Media Ltd, an Indian motion picture production and distribution company has collaborated with Asianet Broadband, a Kerala-based internet service provider to launch a movie streaming service called Broadband Movies.

TRAI Releases Recommendations on “Delivering Broadband Quickly What do we need to do?”

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) issued its Recommendations on “Delivering Broadband Quickly: What do we need to do?”.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

Doordarshan to telecast a special documentary on film legend Mrinal Sen

Paying its tribute to the living legend of India, Doordarshan has made an exclusive documentary on the legendary film maker Mrinal Sen titled 'Celebrating Mrinal Sen'.

TV18 Broadcast Q4 profit increased to Rs 95.47 crore from 35.90 crore

TV18 Broadcast’s net profit of fourth quarter for FY 2014-15, has increased by 166 per cent from Rs 35.9 crore to Rs 95.47 crore. The share price of TV 18 surged nearly 9 per cent after declaring the financial result.

Namit Sharma Programming Head, quits Zee TV

Namit Sharma, a programming Head at ZEE TV has decided to quit the company. He had been appointed last year and would work in the company till 8th May. 

HC ban extended till 27 May on airing BBC gangrape documentary

In a hearing related to BBC documentary held on 15 April in Delhi High court, the court observed that this film can encourage and incite violence against women and thus compromise women’s safety. 

CommunicAsia2015: Implementing a Mobile-First Strategy, One Stream at a Time

Online entertainment is moving from downloading to streaming on both PC and mobile devices for various reasons. The convenience and ability to cherry-pick your favourite content is already a good draw, but the true irresistible power of such streaming services comes from freeing up on storage space. You no longer have to pay for songs, instead you pay for access to a vast library of songs – a number much larger than a single device could conceivably store.

Discovery Channel to premiere ‘THE ISLAND WITH BEAR GRYLLS’

Ever wondered if you could survive being stranded on a desert island? On THE ISLAND WITH BEAR GRYLLS, a group of ordinary men have done the unthinkable and willingly put themselves through one of the toughest survival shows on television. Bear puts them all to the test in order to answer the question, "Can modern man still cut it in the wild?" With only the clothes on their backs and some basic tools, they're taken to a remote, uninhabited Pacific island, where they are left alone to fend for themselves for four weeks. The six-part series premieres every Monday, 10 pm starting April 20, on Discovery Channel.

Times Television Network rebranded as Times Network ‘Now or Nothing’

Times Television Network has been rebranded as Times Network with its positioning statement of – NOW OR NOTHING. The organisation will strive to constantly be quick, relevant and immediate. This is encapsulated in the word ‘NOW’. The new, improved brand logo and rebranding will facilitate higher resonance for the channels vis-a-vis competition.

2G spectrum case hearing commencing on 16 April

The hearing on 2G spectrum scam case, related to Ex—Telecom Minister A Raja, DMK MP Kanimozhi and others including some top corporate executives is likely to commence tomorrow before a special court. On March 24, Special CBI Judge O P Saini, had fixed the hearing for tomorrow.
In its charge sheet filed by CBI on 2 April 2011, had alleged that there was a loss of Rs. 30,984 crore in allocation of 122 licences for 2G spectrum. On 2 February 2012, the Supreme Court of India ruled on a public interest litigation (PIL) related to the 2G spectrum scam and declared that the allotment of spectrum is unconstitutional and arbitrary, hence cancelled the 122 licenses issued in 2008 under A. Raja (Minister of Communications & IT from 2007 to 2009), the primary official accused. 

TRAI received 77 applications for the post of its chairman

At the incoming retriement of TRAI chief Rahul Khullar, on second week of May, the authority received 77 applications for the said post. Out of 77 applications, 17 have come from serving and retired Union secretaries, and one from a former deputy governor of RBI.
According to the sources, some of eminent persons who applied for the post of chairman include R K Mathur Defence Secretary, RS Sharma IT secretary, Bimal Julka, I&B secretary, Rajeev Kher, Commerce Secretary and Rakesh Singh, Steel secretary. Former RBI deputy governor Subir Gokarn is also in the race.

Surana Telecom acquires Arhyama Energy Private Limited in Telangana

Telecom and solar energy major Surana Telecom and Power Ltd, acquired majority stake of 51% in Arhyama Energy Private Limited, a renewable energy company, situated at Nalgonda District, in Telangana State.

Saturday, 11 April 2015

Dish TV’s 3 per cent shares sold by Apollo Global

Apollo Global Management LLC, an American private equity firm has sold its 3 per cent (32 million shares) stake of Dish TV at an average price of Rs 82.04 per share and carried away total Rs 262.53 crore. The sold stake was acquired by a portfolio investment unit of Citigroup and a mutual fund under Birla Sun Life.

Prasar Bharati to exploit archived music of AIR & DD; putting it online

To exploit music from the archieves of All india Radio (AIR) and Doordarshan (DD), Prasar Bharati is planning to put it on the online digital platform.
Jawhar Sircar, CEO Prasar Bharati informed media that DD alone had over 200,000 hours of recordings in its archives. Of this, 4,000 hours was ready to be published and another 20,000 had been digitally restored. Further he told that the Prasar Bharati was also considering a proposal to provide a scroll free-of-charge to cultural organizations to announce their forthcoming programmes on DD Bharati.Prasar Bharati has also instructed the news wings of both AIR and DD to cover all important events simultaneously and then share their inputs. 

Electronic gadgets like Smart devices, tablets, laptop and TVs pushing digital advertising market: ASSOCHAM & Deloitte Study

As per study of ASSOCHAM & Deloitte the growing numbers of smartphones, tablets, TVs and laptops are pushing Indian digital advertising market in upward direction and expected to expand at an annual rate of 30 per cent to cross Rs 3,675 crore by month-end.
The ‘Future of e-Commerce: Uncovering Innovation’ study reveals that the digital commerce market in India has grown steadily from $4.4 billion in 2010 to $13.6 billion in 2014 and likely to touch $16 billion by the end of 2015 on the back of growing Internet population and increased online shoppers.

NTV launches bilingual infotainment portal

NTV, a private satellite television channel in Bangladesh, has introduced a bilingual infotainment portal, available in Bangla and English languages. It will provide news, features, photos and videos. 

Lukup Media applies for MSO, ISP licence; deployed DRM solution from Widevine

A Bangalore-based OTT player, Lukup Media has applied for a Multi Service Operator (MSO) licence. At present there is lower-than-expected demand for OTT service but the company expects that after acquiring MSO and ISP licences it will be able to expand its OTT services. 

TRAI Releases Report on Audit and Assessment of Quality of Service of Telecom Services

TRAI has conducted Audit and Assessment of Qualityof Service being provided by the service providers through independent agencies for Cellular Mobile Telephone Services, Basic Services and Broadband Services.

IS cyber attack downs

French broadcaster TV5Monde is trying to regain control of its 11 channels and websites after an “extremely powerful” cyber attack by so-called Islamic State.
The attack began around 10pm French time on Wednesday, said Yves Bigot in an interview on RTL radio, and the hackers knocked out the TV channels and posted material on the broadcaster’s Facebook and Twitter feeds. “We’ve been able to restore broadcast of one signal on across all of our channels but cannot send out pre-recorded broadcasts nor restart the production of our news shows,” he said.

YouTube ad-free SVoD service

YouTube will launch a subscription version of its online video service, for which viewers will pay to remove its advertising.
The Google-owned video portal revealed its plans in an email to channel owners, while also informing them that if they do not sign up to participate, they will have to set all their videos to “private”.

BBC ‘Internet first’ broadcaster

Matthew Postgate, the corporation’s chief technology officer, has said the BBC will become an “internet first” broadcaster in order to appeal to younger audiences. Postgate was tasked with making sure the broadcaster was “relevant” to younger viewers and could compete with online rivals such as Netflix and Amazon.
His appointment followed the scrapping in 2013 of the failed Digital Media Initiative, an attempt to create an integrated digital production and archiving system.

I&B Ministry exercise power to shut down Jai Hind channel for one day

I&B Ministry exercises power to shut down Jai Hind Channel for one day. “A” certified film, titled “Hai Harithe’ on 27-08-2012 at 10:03:12 hours was telecasted but the film had some gross violation as per provisions of the Cable Television Networks(Regulation) Act , 1995 and Rules framed thereunder.

TRAI reduces ceiling tariffs for national roaming service from May 1

TRAI has reduced ceiling tariffs for national roaming calls and SMS and has mandated telecom service providers (TSPs) to offer a special roaming tariff plan to its pre-paid and post-paid subscribers. In Special Roaming Tariff Plan, incoming voice calls while on national roaming shall be free, on payment of fixed charge, if any. These changes will come into effect from the 1st May, 2015.

Instant messaging app ‘Jio Chat’ launched by Reliance Jio

for iOS and Android cell phones. The company will bring such types of Apps more as it is to roll out its high-speed 4Gnetwork, widely expected later this year. 

MIB decided to hold open house meetings with all stakeholders on 20th every month

The Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) has decided to hold all future open house meetings (OHMs) with all stake holders including Multi-System Operators (MSOs), broadcasters and teleport operators once a month. Henceforth open house will be held on 20th of each month. If the 20th of a month happens to be a central government holiday, then the meeting would be held on next working day. Timing for the meetings will be from 11 am to 12 pm. 

Zee’s Dance India Dance to be available to Thai audience

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (Zeel) has finalised a syndication deal with JKN Global Media Limited, Thailand for its home-grown format, Dance India Dance ( DID). 

Taiwan Broadband Communications Selects Nagra's OpentTV 5

NAGRA, a Kudelski Group digital TV business and the world's leading provider of content protection and multiscreen television solutions, announced that Taiwan Broadband Communications (TBC), one of the leading multi-system cable operators in Taiwan, has selected NAGRA’s OpenTV 5 connectware technology to power its next generation digital TV platform. Leveraging NAGRA’s DECE and DTLA-approved DRM solution, NAGRA any CAST PRM, TBC will be able to deploy a hybrid platform combining broadcast and Internet TV services while ensuring content remains secure on any device. TBC has been a NAGRA customer since 2008.

Saffron Digital and Verimatrix Collaborate to Offer Enhanced

Saffron Digital, a premium video platform provider that simplifies the management and delivery of multi-platform video services, has partnered with Verimatrix, the specialist in securing and enhancing revenue for multi-network, multi-screen video services around the globe, to offer advanced revenue security and monetization tools to broadcasters and operators.

Videocon d2h rings the Opening Bell at NASDAQ

Videocon d2h, DTH Company achieved yet another milestone, as it rang the opening bell at the prestigious NASDAQ stock market in New York on 7 April 2015.

I&B Ministry exercise power to shut down Jai Hind channel for one day

I&B Ministry exercises power to shut down Jai Hind Channel for one day. “A” certified film, titled “Hai Harithe’ on 27-08-2012 at 10:03:12 hours was telecasted but the film had some gross violation as per provisions of the Cable Television Networks (Regulation) Act, 1995 and Rules framed thereunder.

Thursday, 9 April 2015

LinkedIn to Deliver Visionary Address at CommunicAsia2015 and BroadcastAsia2015

Social media has become an even bigger part of consumers’ lives in today’s hyper-connected world. Users are finding more ways to play, interact, work and even monetise content through social media. Asia Pacific, presently the world’s largest mobile region[1], accounts for over half of the globe’s social media users[2]. The social media explosion has not only changed the lives of hyper-connected consumers, it has also caused a rippling effect throughout its ecosystem – businesses, network infrastructure, communication providers and more.

ALi announces its Ready-to-Produce Solution Based on M3823 Integrating GINGA Middleware for Brazil Analog Switch-off

ALi Corporation, a leading Set-Top Box (STB) chipset solution provider, announced its ready-to-produce set-top-box platform integrating well established GINGA middleware solutions for Brazil's Analog Switch-off (ASO) initiatives. ALi is collaborating with strategic manufacturing and branding partners to deliver this cost optimized design for the Brazilian market.

EI Group Supports India’s Smart City Vision: Organises the Annual International Smart Cities India 2015 Expo

Smart Cities India 2015 expo, being organized by Exhibitions India Group (EI) at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, from 20th to 22nd May 2015 is an appropriate platform to catalyze the Prime Minister’s programs on Smart Cities, Swachh Bharat, Made in India, Digital India, Housing for All, and Make in India. The event will focus on Smarter Solutions for a Better Tomorrow.

POWERGRID organizes 5th Gridtech 2015

Power Grid Corporation of India Ltd. (POWERGRID), a Navratna PSU and the leading T&D player of the country, announced the 5th international Exhibition and Conference GRIDTECH 2015 at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi with the support of the Power Ministry. The exhibition has brought together various international and national manufacturers, planners, policy makers, investors, consultants, research institutions etc., becoming the largest integrated platform where superior technologies and creative expertise in the transmission and distribution domain were displayed.

ZEEL appoints Piyush Sharma as CEO – New Initiatives, India & APAC

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) announced the appointment of Piyush Sharma in its leadership team as CEO – New Initiatives, India & APAC. 

Four TV channels ordered to shut down from a day to a month for violating content code

Four TV Channels were admonished by the I&B Ministry in the month of March for violating the programme code prescribed in the Cable TV Rules. 

Delhi govt levies Rs 33 cr penalty on Siti Cable for entertainment tax evasion

Siti Cable Network, an Essel Group Company has been directed by Delhi government to deposit Rs 33.12 crore as its outstanding entertainment tax for two years along with interest and penalty by 22 April. Siti Cable however, has denied this and in a statement said that the matter in sub judice as they have already challenged the demand of Delhi Government.

Calcutta HC extends the stay order on cancellation of DigiCablecomm Services’ licence for DAS

The Calcutta High Court has extended the stay on the cancellation of DigiCablecomm Services’ multi-system operator (MSO) licence by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting till the disposal of the case. The matter was listed in the High Court before Justice IP Mukerji on 6 April.

Shailesh Kumar to quit Focus News

Shailesh Kumar, managing editor-regional news channels has decided to quit Focus News. He has submitted his paper on 1 April. He will serve under notice period till April-end. He had joined Focus News in December last year.

ZEEL to switch off 9X and Zee Premiere, plans to launch Zee Café HD

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) has decided to shut its two channels down - 9X and Zee Premiere, which are pay channels and will cease operations from 13 and 15 April respectively. 

Tuesday, 7 April 2015

Virgin extends TiVo partnership

UK cable MSO Virgin Media has extended its existing five-year partnership with next generation television specialist TiVo for a further three years. As part of the new agreement, Virgin Media has committed to the development of next-generation solutions from TiVo.

Germany: ‘Modems are part of network’

German cablers are resisting the Federal government’s planned ban on operators forcing subscribers to take a router supplied them rather than buy a device on the open market.
Vodafone and Kabel Deutschland’s February joint submission against the draft legislation has just been revealed. They argue the proposals failed to take into account the shared nature of the last-mile cable network, that routers should be considered as part of the network infrastructure they provide and that they should be allowed to decide on which cable modem subscribers take.

Digital pay-TV revenues rocket in Eastern Europe

Despite the incessant gloomy economic and political news from the region, pay-TV revenues in Eastern Europe will be 45 per cent higher in 2020 ($7,269 million) than in 2010 ($5,029 million), according to Digital TV Research. However, the fifth edition of the Digital TV Eastern Europe Forecasts reportstates that increase will only be 17 per cent between 2014 and 2020, although this is still an increase of $1 billion.

India cable & satellite subs 175m by 2019

Last week’s FICCI event in Mumbai heard KPMG’s ‘state of the nation’ report  which forecast that India’s massive cable and satellite sector would see huge benefits from the on-going digitisation of the country.

Guangdong Cable selects NAGRA anyCAST

NAGRA, a Kudelski Group digital TV business and provider of content protection and multiscreen television solutions, announced today that Guangdong Cable has selected NAGRA anyCAST content protection solutions to secure a new offer combining DVB-based live TV and Internet-based OTT services. The OTT services will include live TV and VoD delivered to PCs, iOS and Android devices. Guangdong Cable serves more than 20 million customers in the Guangdong province and this latest selection marks NAGRA’s growing footprint in China.
Guangdong Cable entrusted its new platform to NAGRA because of their excellent track record in deploying end-to-end solutions and their longstanding expertise in content protection. NAGRA anyCAST solutions presented a unique opportunity for Guangdong Cable to meet its goals of delivering a robust offer to its subscribers with the new services they are asking for.

Monday, 6 April 2015

Innovid wins Cisco funding

Innovid, a player in cross-channel advanced video, has announced that Cisco Investments has become a new investor in the company in order to help realise that vision. Additionally, all original investors, including Genesis Partners, Sequoia Capital, and T-Venture, participated in the raise of $10 million.

Ofcom: 4G outperforming 3G

The UK’s 4G networks are performing “much better” than 3G but a study has highlighted significant variations between operators.

Sling TV adds live, VOD HBO to OTT service

Cord-cutting Game of Thrones fans, rejoice: Sling TV is adding HBO Now to its content bouquet as a premium add-on.

Saturday, 4 April 2015

Vodafone announced its mobile network expansion in Arunachal Pradesh

On 3 March, Vodafone announced that the company is going to expend its mobile network in two more districts of Arunachal Pradesh namely Daporijo in Upper Subansiri District, and Aalong and Basar in West Siang District. 

Catvision signed JV with Unitron Group NV

Catvision, one of the oldest manufacturer of CATV equipment in the country has signed a joint venture agreement with Belgian company Unitron Group NV to set up a 50:50 joint venture called Catvision Unitron in India. The JV will develop CATV digital systems and products with the latest world-class technology.

ATV’s broadcasting license cancelled in Hong Kong; new license issued to HKTVE

Hong Kong government has cancelled the broadcasting license of Asia Television (ATV), an oldest free-to-air TV network group in Hong Kong. 

Vishal Bhatnagar appointed as Business Head: BBC India

BBC India has appointed Vishal Bhatnagar as Business Head. Prior to BBC India, Bhatnagar has worked in CNN-IBN as National Sales Head and later as a National Revenue Head.

Kisan TV, rescheduled to be launched on 21 April

A dedicated television channel for farmers, Kisan TV, which was scheduled to be launched on Baisakhi Day - 14 April, is now expected to be launched on 21 April.

India’s Videocon lists on NASDAQ

Indian pay-TV operator Videocon d2h is now listed on the NASDAQ exchange.
Claimed to be India’s fastest-growing DTH operator, the listing came about following the $453 million investment by Harry Sloan and Jeff Sagansky (via their Silver Eagle Acquisition Corp) into Videocon d2h.

Airtel DTH tops 10m subs

Bharti Airtel’s DTH pay-TV division (Airtel Digital TV) is reporting that its Indian subscribers have topped the 10 million mark, and this has been achieved within 6 years of the division’s start up.
Shashi Arora, CEO – Airtel Digital TV said, “At Airtel Digital TV, we strive to empower our customers with superior television viewing experience by offering innovative & life enriching services backed with cutting-edge technology. These offerings have not only helped increase customer stickiness but also made us one of the fastest growing DTH companies today.”

Android apps to run on Windows, Macs, Linux

Google has released a tool that lets Android apps run on any machine that can run its Chrome browser.
Called Arc Welder, the tool acts as a wrapper around Android apps so they can run on Windows, OSX and Linux machines. The software expands the places that Android apps can run and aims to make it easier for developers to get code working on different machines.

Friday, 3 April 2015

ICC World Cup viewership soared to 635 million in India

The ICC cricket World Cup that ended earlier this week was watched by 635 million Indians till the semi-final stage. This viewership made this Cricket World Cup most watched event in the history of Indian television. 

I&B Ministry reminded Home Ministry to expedite security clearances for MSOs

Information and Broadcasting Ministry (I&B) has sent a fresh reminder to the Home Ministry related to security clearance for MSOs in the DAS regions. Several proposals by private MSOs have remained pending for long periods either with I&B or the Home Ministry adversely affecting the process of digitisation.

Madras HC issued notice to Arasu Cable

The Madras High Court issued a notice to Arasu Cable TV Corporation Limited (TNACTC) and Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) on 02 March on the plea of Paattali Makkal Katchi-based Makkal TV to restore telecasting the channel 'MAKKAL TV' through Arasu cable network in S-4 frequency under the same category of Free-to-Air Channel throughout Tamil Nadu. 

BharatNet, a new name for National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN)

The government has decided to rename the National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) broadband project as BharatNet. This new name has been recommended to telecom & IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad by a committee set up by the PMO to analyse the structure of the national optical fibre network (NOFN), which was initiated by the UPA regime.

Government received almost Rs 11,000 crore as upfront payment for spectrum from four operators

Four telecom operators- including Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India, Idea Cellular and Reliance Jio Infocomm have paid Rs 10,791 crore to government as part of upfront payment for airwaves. These payments were a part of the nearly Rs 29,000 crore that the auction winners needed to pay by April 8. These payments will also mitigate and keep fiscal deficit at 4.1 per cent of GDP for the year ending March 31.

Focus appointed Sandeep Bamzai as Editor; looking to cut two regional channels

Focus News has appointed Sandeep Bamzai, a veteran Journalist as Editor. He will look after the editorial operations of Focus News. Prior to Focus News, Sandeep Bamzai has worked as Editor in Mail Today newspaper. He resigned from Mail Today last month   because  he was named in a public interest litigation (PIL) related to the Essar Group, allegedly cultivating people in position of power by showering them with favours to forward its business interests.

C. Lalrosanga appointed as interim DG: Doordarshan

Government has appointed C. Lalrosanga, a veteran broadcaster, as Director General of Doordarshan following retirement of Vijayalakshmi Chhabra. Lalrosanga was Additional Director General in All India Radio and has a rich and diverse experience of sound and visuals in broadcasting.

Marans’ assets worth of Rs. 742.58 cr seized by ED in Aircel-Maxis case

Enforcement Directorate (ED) seized the bank accounts and properties of former telecom Union Minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanidhi Maran, owner of Sun TV, of worth Rs. 742.58 crores in Aircel-Maxis case. Such action was taken by ED on the grounds that Maran brothers had allegedly favoured the Malaysian firm Maxis Group to take over the telecom company Aircel. This order was issued under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Wednesday, 1 April 2015

Conax extends executive line-up to drive long-term strategy and further increase customer service offerings

Conax, part of the Kudelski Group and a leading provider of complete video content and service protection for pay-TV operators and OTT service providers, announced strategic enhancements to its senior management. Bringing over 20 years of experience, EVP Principal Architect, Tor Helge Kristiansen will hold a highly complementary function encompassing both a key advisory role for championing strategic planning, and a trigger for executing on strategy with long term global trends in mind. Kristiansen will also play a central role in sparking and driving technology collaboration initiatives with other Kudelski Group entities. Tom Jahr takes responsibility for Conax Marketing in his new role as EVP Products & Marketing meant to bring market requirements closer to products and solutions development and foster compelling new go-to-market strategies.

Harmonic Boosts Rack Density and Cost Efficiency of MediaGrid Shared Video Storage

Harmonic the worldwide leader in video delivery infrastructure, announced the release of the new Harmonic MediaGrid ContentStore 5840, a dual-redundant chassis that allows users of large-scale Harmonic MediaGrid shared storage systems to reduce rack space by two-thirds and achieve 30 percent cost savings on equivalent storage capacity. By integrating ContentStore 5840 storage nodes into new or existing MediaGrid installations, users can build larger, faster video file systems within a smaller footprint using fewer cable connections.

Five new MSO licences issued: MIB

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has issued five new MSO (multi-system operator) licences making a total of 158 registered MSOs for Operating Digital Addressable System (DAS) in the country.

BARC India appointed Sumit Chowdhury as technical advisor

Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India has appointed Sumit Chowdhury as its technical advisor. The main job of Mr. Sumit Chowdhury is to measure and automate all critical processes and to create a mission-critical infrastructure that scales to the requirements of the media, telecom and entertainment industry.He will also contribute to the creation of other information products from the vast amount of data collected by BARC India.

AL Jazeera English inks deal with Airtel Digital TV

Al Jazeera English (AJE), an international 24-hour English-language news and current affairs TV channel owned and funded by the House of Thani's Al Jazeera Media Network, headquartered in Doha, Qatar has signed a distribution agreement with Airtel Digital TV. Now AJE will be available on Airtel Digital TV’s channel number 321. 

Airtel Digital TV plans to add 12 channels in Phase III & IV; focusing on smaller towns

Airtel Digital TV a Direct-to-Home (DTH) believes that digitisation and Hi-Definition (HD) connections will be key factors for its growth.

YuppTV App Launches Globally on Microsoft’s XBOX 360

YuppTV announced the launch of its application on Microsoft’s XBOX360. YuppTV offers a world-class viewing experience with an extensive range of channels and unlimited Movies, Live TV, 10 days of Catch-up TV and TV shows available in 11 South-Asian languages.  Launch of the YuppTV Application on XBOX 360 is part of its dynamic growth, uncompromising commitment and endeavor to reach out to television viewers across the globe. Its unparalleled offering of channels and vast collection of movies has enabled YuppTV to grow into the world’s leading over-the-top (OTT) content provider. YuppTV application which will now be available to viewers using XBOX 360, is poised to offer a global audience, the best value in entertainment.

Reliance MediaWorks and Carnival Films deal gets green signal from CCI

After getting a green signal from CCI, Reliance MediaWorks, a part of Anil Ambani-led group, is ready to sell its multiplex business to South-India based Carnival Films. This transaction will reduce the debt of Reliance Capital by Rs 700 crore. This deal will make Carnival, the third largest multiplex operator with nationwide presence and over 300 screens in India.

MSM to launch Sony Kix, its second sports channel

Multi Screen Media (MSM) is set to launch its second sports channel, Sony Kix. The launch of the channel will coincide with the Indian Premier League (IPL), which is starting on 8 April and final is on May 24. Sony Kix will start telecasting IPL Season 8 matches with commentary in Tamil, Telugu and Bengali, apart from Hindi and English.

TRAI issues Tariff Order prescribing framework for commercial Interoperability of Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) in DTH services

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India  (TRAI) on 1 April 2015 issued a Tariff Order (TO) namely the Telecommunication (Broadcasting and Cable) Services (Seventh) (the Direct to Home Services) Tariff Order, 2015 (2 of 2015). This Tariff Order (TO) prescribe a framework for commercial interoperability of Customer Premises Equipment (CPE) offered by the Direct-to-Home (DTH) operators to their subscribers.

GreenPeak signs partnership agreement with ZTE

GreenPeak Technologies, the industry leading Smart Home semi-conductor/system company, and ZTE Health, a member of the world wide ZTE Group, have signed a partnership agreement to develop Smart Home applications and to provide smart solutions for the world’s aging population. This new application enables people to live longer at home independently while providing peace of mind to their care givers and family. The agreement was signed in Shanghai and was witnessed by the Dutch Prime Minister Mr. Rutte, who mentioned this partnership in his speech as an example of Dutch and Chinese collaboration, to address the care for the world’s growing elderly population, starting in China.

EchoStar and NAGRA Join Forces in SmarDTV

Kudelski Group and EchoStar Corporation announced the signing of an agreement whereby EchoStar will become a shareholder in SmarDTV SA, the subsidiary of Kudelski SA that offers advanced set-top boxes and conditional access modules. As part of the transaction, EchoStar’s operations in Steeton, U.K. and Madrid, Spain will be transferred to SmarDTV.

Care World TV to Revamp Itself with Reinvented Programming

Care World TV, the seven-year-old health and fitness television channel will be revamping itself to address the fast evolving lifestyles of the urban population. The first and largest healthcare satellite channel in Asia has already set up a new state-of-the-art studio at its Mumbai office and has kept ready 1000 hours of content on new wellness programmes that will be both informative and Do It Yourself (DIY) in nature. From aerobics to traditional massages, yoga to fitness gyms, diet and nutrition to healthy cooking, the new avatar of the TV channel will reinvent the subject matter on Wellness.

Videocon d2h set to become most valued Indian Company on NASDAQ with market cap of $1.15 billion

Videocon d2h, India’s fastest growing DTH Company has closed the IPO processand is getting listed on NASDAQ, issuing ADR of worth $325 million to the public with current market cap of $1.15 billion.

Govt received 28 applications for e-Auction of 135 Channels in First Batch of FM Phase III

Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, Government of India received total 28 applications by 27th March 2015, the last date of receipt of application, in connection with  the e-auction of 135 Private FM Radio channels in 69 existing cities of Phase II in the first batch of Phase III.

CASBAA urges Indian govt to allow DTH & satellite ops to cement long term deals

At present, contracts for satellite capacity for DTH broadcasters are limited to a 3-year term by Indian government regulation. Speaking at...