The extraordinary expansion in DTH satellite broadcasting that began in the CEE region half a decade ago is unlikely to end any time soon.
Just this week it has emerged that T-Mobile is planning what has been described as a virtual platform in the Czech Republic. Employing rented capacity from existing operations such as Skylink and CS Link, it will, if launched, enter a market already served by four DTH services.
Broadband TV News was also informed that earlier this week that a transponder on Intelsat 12 at 45 degrees East has begun to carry a 30-channel test service, employing NDS’s VideoGuard conditional access. It is apparently being distributed by Vivacom and could eventually lead to the launch of what would be Bulgaria’s third DTH platform, in competition with Bulsatcom and Total TV, by the incumbent telco.
Also earlier this week, at the Modern Times Group (MTG) Capital Markets Day in London, it emerged that the Swedish company is actively looking for further DTH opportunities in the CEE region. It already operates platforms in the Baltic Republics, Ukraine and Russia and other markets could soon follow.
Although there have recently been the first signs of consolidation in the DTH marketplace – Gazprom Media’s acquisition of Tricolor TV in Russia and Mid Europa’s of ITV Partner in Bulgaria instantly come to mind – and strong rumours about the possible sale of up to two Romania’s five platforms, the number of satellite services continues to rise.
And with most markets in the region still having considerable growth potential for DTH – MTG, for instance, believes there are still up to 10 million prospective satellite subscribers in Russia “up for grabs” – this trend is likely to continue for some time to come.
Broadband TV News continues to keep a close eye on developments in the sector and has just published a News Briefing entitled DTH Satellite Broadcasting in Central & East Europe. We believe it will be a valuable tool for readers wishing to understand the market and its prospects for the future.
Learn more about the Briefing in the Broadband TV News Shop