Friday, 31 July 2015

Facebook to provide Internet connectivity in remote areas

Facebook Inc.’s new solar-powered unmanned aerial vehicle, which is complete and ready for testing, aims to provide Internet connectivity in remote locations across the world using laser and radio frequency technology.

BCCI sells 4-year title sponsorship rights to Paytm for Rs 203 crore

BCCI has sold the sponsorship rights for international and domestic matches in India to One97 Communications, which runs India’s leading digital goods marketplace Paytm, for Rs 203.28 crore (Rs 2.03 billion) for the period September 2015-October 2019. 

Capability to launch Geosynchronous Satellite

India has demonstrated the capability of launching 1.4 ton class of satellites using Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV) and 2 ton class of satellites using Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mk II to Geosynchronous Transfer Orbit (GTO).

FM Phase III auction Day 4: Rs 643 crore bid for 80 channels

E-Auction of the First Batch of Private FM Radio Phase III Channels re-commenced on 30th July 2015 at 09.30 A.M. and during the day, four rounds of bidding took place.

TDSAT asks TRAI to examine HITS operators’ inter-connect agreements

On 30 July, The Telecom Disputes Settlement & Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has asked the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) to take a clear stand on key questions relating to interconnect agreement in the dispute between broadcasters Star India, Taj Television and headend-in-the-sky (HITS) operator Noida Software Technology Pvt Ltd (NSTPL). 

27 violations by news channels in first 14 months of NDA govt

Since coming to power 14 months ago, the Narendra Modi government has issued a total of 31 warnings, orders and advisories to different television channels for violating the various provisions of the programme code, a part of the Cable Television (Regulation) Act, 1995, as data provided to Parliament shows.
But the interesting point is that violations by news channels are significantly up when compared with the last 14 months of the Manmohan Singh government. It stood at 90 per cent (or 27 of 31) in comparison to 42 per cent (or 16 of 38) during the past 14 months of UPA-II. Violations by non-news channels, notably, general entertainment channels (GECs), were 22 of 38, or 58 per cent, during UPA-II, data shared with Parliament shows. In the current regime, non-news violations stand at four only.

MIB does not keep record of non-carriage of mandatory channels: Jaitley

NEW DELHI: While multi-system operators (MSOs) and direct-to-home (DTH) operators are expected to mandatorily carry a total of 24 Doordarshan channels in digital addressable system (DAS) areas, the number of channels to be carried in the non-DAS areas is 10.
The channels to be carried by DAS and non-DAS areas includes Gyan Darshan, which is currently off-air but Doordarshan sources tell that some arrangement was being worked out to re-start the channel run by the Indira Gandhi National Open University.

Thursday, 30 July 2015

Mediaset seeks retransmission fees from Sky Italia

Italian commercial broadcaster Mediaset will seek retransmission fees from pay-TV operator Sky Italia for the broadcasting of its free-to-air channels on the satellite TV platform.
Mediaset executive director, Gina Nieri, said they have been seeking an agreement with Sky Italia, but will now exercise their rights with formal acts in the coming weeks, as this is standard practice in the US and Europe. She added that the request to Sky is supported by the recent resolution passed by Italy’s Communications Authority (AgCom) that recognised the right of public broadcaster RAI to get paid for content from Sky Italia.

Snapchat for Univision events

Univision Communications, a media company reaching Hispanic America, has announced a partnership with Snapchat that will see Snapchat will create unique Live Stories around Univision events, including sports and entertainment. The partnership, which is one of the first between Snapchat and a television network, kicks off with the Gold Cup Final on July 26th.

Consumers most likely to share “inspiring” videos

Research revealing the most shareable online video content has been unveiled by video sharing and collaboration service StreamSafe.
By analysing the 100 most shared videos online, StreamSafe’s research revealed that ‘inspiration’ is the emotion most likely to encourage viewers to share a video. Just under half (48 per cent) of the 1,000 UK consumers surveyed agreed they would share the videos they saw which inspired them, beating both happiness (43 per cent) and excitement (41 per cent), which were the second and third most powerful emotions in shareability.

MTV network rebrand

MTV International, which spans 160+ countries and territories and 32 languages, has announced that effective immediately the youth brand will evolve from “I want my MTV” to “I am my MTV.”

TDSAT adjourns DTH CPE case to 31 July

The Telecom Disputes Settlement & Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has adjourned the direct-to-home (DTH) customer premises equipment (CPE) case to 31 July 2015, as the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) counsel did not have necessary instructions. 

Doordarshan and All India Radio try to improve quality

Doordarshan (DD) says it is trying to induct media professionals into its news divisions at salaries comparable to the best in the sector. A similar process is said to be on at professionalising All India Radio (AIR).

FM Phase III auction Day 3: Rs 549 crore bid for 80 channels

E-Auction of the First Batch of Private FM Radio Phase III re-commenced on 29th July 2015 at 09.30 A.M. and during the day, four rounds of bidding took place. Till now, 12 rounds of bidding are over. 

BARC India gets registration from MIB

Broadcast Audience Research Council (BARC) India the new television audience measurement service in India has got the registration from the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB). 

Videocon d2h strengthens OTT commitment with launch of direct to mobile TV app

Videocon d2h Limited India’s most valued company on the NASDAQ has reinforced its investment in over-the-top (OTT) services with the launch of a mobile TV app. The new app, called Direct to Mobile TV, will make it possible for Videocon d2h subscribers to watch television anytime, anywhere on their mobile phones. 

Govt approves Hathway’s proposal to increase FDI limit to 74%

The government has approved multi-system operator (MSO) Hathway Cable & Datacom’s proposal to increase its foreign direct investment (FDI) limit to 74 per cent, from current 49 per cent. 

CCI imposes penalty upon Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC), Karnataka Television Association (KTVA) and Kannada Film Producers

Competition Commission of India has found Karnataka Film Chamber of Commerce (KFCC), Karnataka Television Association (KTVA) and Kannada Film Producers Association (KFPA) in contravention of Section 3 of the Competition Act, 2002. The Informant, an association of viewers within the State of Karnataka, had approached the Commission alleging anti-competitive conduct by various associations in the State of Karnataka in not allowing dubbed content in the form of films and TV serials.

Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Airtel, Ericsson extend ties with LTE deployment in Gabon

Bharti Airtel's subsidiary in the African state of Gabon has partnered with Ericsson to bring the latest mobile technology to the country.
Airtel Gabon has appointed Ericsson as its sole supplier for the deployment of a new LTE network in the country.

Animal Planet celebrates Indian Wildlife

This August 15, Animal Planet adds new flavour to its most celebrated programming line-up YEH MERA INDIA.  Commemorating the 69th year of India’s Independence, Animal Planet will launch a new campaign taking viewers on an exotic journey to explore some of the rarely seen and endangered wildlife of the country.  Travelling across the Himalayan Mountains, down the mighty River Ganges to the rainforests of Shola and the Western Ghats, the month-long programming line-up YEH MERA INDIA will intrigue viewers to relish India’s incredible wildlife and its pristine natural beauty.

Discovery Turbo presents a new series Idris Elba: King of Speed

Discovery Turbo presents a new series that charts the history and origin of underground racing in IDRIS ELBA: KING OF SPEED. In the series, Idris Elba, award-winning British actor will examine how the quest for high speed has affected modern motorsport and the cars of today.

Harmonic Powers Japan's First Live, Full-Frame 4K Ultra HD Channel for EHIME CATV

Harmonic the worldwide leader in video delivery infrastructure announced that Japanese cable TV operator EHIME CATV has deployed Harmonic's Electra™ X3 advanced media processor to support a trial of the country's first live, full-frame 4K Ultra HD (UHD) channel. Utilizing the highly flexible and scalable Electra X3 media processor to encode UHD content using the HEVC Main 10 codec, EHIME CATV can deliver real-time 2160p60 video to subscribers' set-top boxes (STBs) at low bit rates, while maintaining video quality targets. The Electra X3 media processor's advanced compression technology provides EHIME CATV with superior video quality while offering low total cost of ownership (TCO), transforming the live entertainment experience for EHIME CATV viewers.

Comcast and Discovery Communications Renew Long-Term Distribution Agreement

Comcast Corporation and Discovery Communications on 27 July announced a long-term, comprehensive renewal of its distribution agreement that will deliver Discovery’s 12 U.S. networks to Comcast’s Xfinity TV customers across the nation.

FM Phase III auction Day 2: 479 crore bid for 79 channels

The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting said that the bidding re-commenced on 28 July at 09.30 AM and during the day, four rounds of bidding took place, till now, 8 rounds of bidding are over. 

Doordarshan Launches its Payment Gateway in Collaboration with State Bank of India

In January’ 2015, Doordarshan automated its commercial operations for DD National channel in the Phase-I. This is to be followed for other channels and is under implementation. This has helped in integrating various steps involved in executing commercials from booking to scheduling and billing. However, the last step of payment receipt was still manual.

Monday, 27 July 2015

Imagine Communications Appoints Chief Marketing Officer

20-year industry veteran brings track record of technology and business innovation   

Russian channel pulled up by I&B ministry for indecent content

Moscow-based channel Russia Today has been pulled up by the Information and Broadcasting ministry for airing a video clip containing several indecent shots last year.

MSM now on a-la-cart basis on Hathway from August 2

Multi Screen Media (MSM) channels will now be available only on a-la-carte basis to Hathway Cable & Datacom subscribers from August 2. 

Hinduja Group awaits BIS approval for set-top box production

Grant Investrade Ltd., a Hinduja Group company, is seeing a major boost to the government of India’s Make in India drive, through the transition of TV cable services from the analogue to the digital platform.

Red FM can participate in FM radio auctions: Delhi HC

In a relief for Red FM, the Delhi High Court on 26 July allowed the government's July 15 decision denying security clearance to the radio channel as well as rejecting its application for permission to participate in stage three of FM auctions.

TDSAT directs CFSL to verify signature in Manthan and Rajarhat Cable

The Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) has sent to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory (CFSL), New Delhi, two samples of the signatures of an individual to verify whether one is forged as alleged.

I&B ministry issues advisory to TV channels on live coverage of anti-terror operations in Punjab

The I&B ministry on 27 July issued an advisory to all television channels not to broadcast the live coverage of anti-terrorist operations by security forces. 

Friday, 24 July 2015

Madras High Court allows three Sun companies to take part in FM auctions

The Madras High Court on 23 July allowed three Sun group companies - Sun Network, Kal Radio and South Asia FM to participate in the phase-III auction of FM radio.

Videocon honored at 12th National Award for Excellence in Cost Management 2014

Videocon, the leading consumer electronics brand with the largest distribution network in the country, bagged the esteemed award for good performance in private manufacturing under large organization category, at the 12th National Award for Excellence in Cost Management 2014.

Haryana government to frame policy for Haryanvi films

Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on 23 July said the state government would formulate a policy for promotion of Haryanvi language films and also announced that award-winning 'Pagdi-The Honour' will be made tax-free.

SC stays TRAI directive on wholesale tariff till August 4

The Supreme Court has asked the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) not to give effect to its direction asking broadcasters to roll back the 27.5 per cent tariff hike for non-addressable areas until the next hearing.

Wednesday, 15 July 2015

SC panel suspended CSK, Rajasthan Royals from IPL for 2 years

The Pepsi Indian Premier League (IPL) was thrown into turmoil after a three-member Supreme Court-appointed panel suspended Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Rajasthan Royals, two of the top teams in the tournament, for two years. The committee, headed by former chief justice of India, R M Lodha, also slapped life bans on Gurunath Meiyappan, son-in-law of International Cricket Council President N Srinivasan, as well as Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra, from any cricketing activity for their involvement in illegally betting on matches.

ZEEL announces acquisition of Sarthak Entertainment

Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) has announced in principle decision to acquire 100% equity stake in Sarthak Entertainment Pvt Ltd which operates ‘Sarthak TV’, the GEC in Odia language.

Panel rejects Sun Group’s application to participate in FM radio auctions

An inter-ministerial panel is learnt to have rejected the Sun Group's application to participate in the next-stage FM radio auctions, indicating that the licence renewal request of the Chennai-based network's 33 TV channels — hanging fire after home ministry denied them security clearance — could suffer the same fate.

MIB issues notice for Transparency in processing of Registration as MSO to operate in DAS notified area of Cable TV

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry has once again asked applicant multi-system operators (MSOs) not to be misled by individuals making false claims of helping to get the MSO licences in lieu of illegal gratification.

Friday, 10 July 2015

Bharti Airtel launches cross-border mobile money transfer service in Niger

The newly formed All India Digital Cable Federation (AIDCF) appoints Saharsh Damani as its Secretary General. Prior to joining AIDCF, Mr Damani led research at the Indian Broadcasting Foundation, the prominent body of television broadcasters’ in India.

Saharsh Damani appointed Secretary General by AIDCF

The newly formed All India Digital Cable Federation (AIDCF) appoints Saharsh Damani as its Secretary General. Prior to joining AIDCF, Mr Damani led research at the Indian Broadcasting Foundation, the prominent body of television broadcasters’ in India.

Arthur Bastings to head the Asia Pacific region of Discovery Networks International

Discovery Networks International (DNI) has appointed Arthur Bastings as the new President and Managing Director of Discovery Networks Asia-Pacific (DNAP). He will take the charges from 1st September. He will be responsible for setting the regional strategy and maximising the potential of DNAP’s business and workforce to accelerate the company’s expansion. He will be based out of the Singapore office.

TDSAT directs Hathway Cable not to disconnect signals to SVCOA till the mediation process gets over

Hearing the Petition No.315 (C) of 2015, the Telecom Disputes Settlement & Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) on 8th July, has directed multi-system operator (MSO) Hathway Cable & Datacom, the respondent, not to disconnect the supply of signals to the 16 cable operators affiliated to New Delhi-based Siddhi Vinayak Cable Operators Association (SVCOA), the petitioner, until mediation process is over. 

After Taj Mahal, Jagannath Temple of Puri declared free wifi zone by BSNL

According to the Union Telecom Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, the State-run BSNL has embarked an investment worth Rs 830 crore for various projects in the state of Odisha, half of which will be spent on the broadband network project, NOFN.

Thursday, 9 July 2015

BSNL provides satellite phones en route to Amarnath pilgrims for better connectivity

As a part of the Digital India week celebration, state-run BSNL has provided optical fibre connectivity and satellite phones en route the mountainous trek to the Amarnath pilgrims so that they can get better connectivity during the pilgrimage.

Sistema Shyam TeleServices gets new CTO and COO for West Bengal circles

The telecom service provider under the brand MTS has, Sistema Shyam TeleServices (SSTL) has appointed Bijender Yadav as the new chief technology officer (CTO) and Ashok Singh as the new chief operating officer (COO) of Kolkata and West Bengal circles.

Bharti Enterprises appoint Rahul Bhatnagar as the new MD and CFO

Rahul Bhatnagar, a CA from ICAI, who has a global experience of over 35 years across diverse industries, has been appointed as the new managing director and chief financial officer of Bharti Enterprises.

Hungama Digital announces two new promotions

The digital advertising and promotion marketing agency, Hungama Digital Services (HDS), also a part of the WPP Worldwide Group has promoted Kamal Amesur and Manesh Swamy as executive creative director and creative director, respectively.

Bharti Airtel and M.P government jointly rolls out 'E-Shakti' initiative under Digital India Programme

Bharti Airtel has entered into a partnership with the Madhya Pradesh government to roll out one of its Digital India Week initiatives.

MSO association, AIDCF urges MIB and DoT to remove 8% AGR on cable TV broadband service

After a notice has been circulated to some of the MSOs by DoT to pay internet service provider (ISP) licence fee on not just the broadband revenue, but also the MSO business revenue, the newly formed MSO association, All India Digital Cable Federation (AIDCF) has requested the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) and the Department of Telecom (DoT) to remove the 8 per cent adjusted gross revenue (AGR) applicable for MSOs offering broadband services. 

SC directs CTI, DTH and cable operators to file replies on 27.5% tariff hike case before 21st July

TRAI’s 27.5 per cent inflation-linked tariff hike case for non-addressable system, which was set aside by TDSAT was challenged by the broadcaster in the Supreme Court. Although the matter came up for hearing on 8th July in the apex court before the bench of Justices MY Eqbal and C Nagappan, the court has adjourned the case till 21st July.

TRAI to hold meeting on 14th July to resolve interconnect issues between MSOs and Broadcasters

In a notice issued by Ministry of Information and Broadcasting on 8th July, it announced that TRAI will hold a  meeting with MSOs and broadcasters on 14 July at the TRAI headquarters, to resolve specific issues that they are facing in signing the interconnect agreements.

Mediaset Premium selects CI Plus Wi-Fi CAM by SmarDTV to offer broadcast and broadband services in Italy

Mediaset Premium and SmarDTV, a Kudelski Group company, on 7th July, jointly announced the commercial launch of the first CI Plus Wi-Fi CAM offering both Mediaset Premium broadcast services and Play broadband services in one single module.

Comcast upgrades broadband speed across Northeast and introduces a faster service for its triple-play customers.

The largest broadcasting and Cable Company in the world, Comcast cable of U.S has rolled out a free speed upgrade for its “Blast!” broadband tier across its Northeast Division and has also introduced a faster “Performance Pro” service for its triple-play customers.

Tune in to MOVIES NOW and win a chance to visit the dream destination of Singapore

MOVIES NOW, one of India’s leading Hollywood movie channels – is all set to delight its viewers by offering them an opportunity to win a trip to Singapore and visit its iconic Universal Studios. All expenses will be borne by the channel.

Shop CJ launches Big Brand Bonanza Shopping festival from 10th July

Shop CJ, a pioneer home shopping channel has come up with a three-day “Big brand Bonanza shopping” festival from 10th July to 12th July. The festival will come up with attractive deals and offers in various popular brands like Maharaja, Electrolux, Reebok, Sunflame, Canon, Adah and Reev which are available on TV, web and mobile platform of the home shopping company.

Amagi’s CLOUDPORT enable B4U Television to increase flexibility for Playout and Content Delivery

B4U Television Network India has selected Amagi’s CLOUDPORT 2.0 to improve the playout of its popular TV channels in India — B4U Movies and B4U Music. Through its flagship channel playout platform, Amagi will provide B4U Network with end-to-end cloud-based playout services leveraging satellite distribution from AsiaSat.

Europe’s first free-to-air UHD channel, plans to go live at IFA 2015

The shopping channel and Europe’s first free-to-air UHD channel, is expected to go live at IFA (“Internationale Funkausstellung”), to be held in Berlin in September 2015.

Thursday, 2 July 2015

Zoom and Philips launch Season 2 of its popular lifestyle program Food Fashion Show

Zoom, the flagship Bollywood and Lifestyle channel of the Times Network, in partnership with Philips, unveiled details of Season 2 of its popular lifestyle entertainment show that combines healthy food, style and fashion: Philips Air Fryer Thank God It's Fryday. Celebrity show-stopper Yami Gautam walked the ramp, and superstar chef Ranveer  Brar  created  signature dishes from Season 1 of the popular show.

Dish TV & SITI Cable Join Hands to form ‘Comnet'

Two leading companies of Essel Group, Dish TV and SITI Cable have formed a common entity named “Comnet” which will help synergize the strengths of both the organizations in dealing with broadcasters.

Times Group gears up to bring property channel soon

Times News Network may soon come up with a new channel on property, Property Now.  It will be India’s first pan-India property channel and will be available as a free-to-air (FTA) channel in the initial stage.

Focus TV shuts down the operations of its regional channels

After shutting down the operations of two of its Assam based channels-Focus NE and Focus HiFi in the month of May, Naveen Jindal has now shut down the operations of its Haryana based channel-Focus Haryana from 1st July 2015.

Arun Jaitley is likely to meet PM Narendra Modi to discuss Sun TV licence issue

Even after the government has directed the ministries, both MIB and MHA to take a collective decision to decide the fate of Sun TV, Union Finance and Information & Broadcasting Minister Arun Jaitley is likely to meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi on 2nd July to discuss the implications of the home ministry’s denial of security clearance to Sun TV’s television and FM radio channels. The issue has assumed urgency given that the entire auction process of FM phase 3 has been held up with the I&B Ministry not summoning a meeting of the application review committee. All other 28 companies, barring those affiliated to Kalanithi Maran-promoted Sun TV Network that had applied for the auction and migration from phase 2 to Phase 3, have been granted security clearance.

Wednesday, 1 July 2015

PM Narendra Modi officially kicked-off 'Digital India Week'

After Union Telecom Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad informed about the launch of Digital India week by PM Narendra Modi, today (on 1st july,2015),the PM  officially kicked-off the "Digital India Week"  with an aim to empower the people of the country through the Digital India Programme.  

Interim anticipatory bail granted to Dayanidhi Maran by Madras High Court

On 30th June, 2015, the former Telecom minister Dayanidhi Maran, a prime accused in the illegal telephone exchange case was granted interim anticipatory bail by the Madras High Court.

New season of THROUGH THE WORMHOLE WITH MORGAN FREEMAN premieres ON DISCOVERY SCIENCE with a new look and topics

THROUGH THE WORMHOLE WITH MORGAN FREEMAN-a triple Emmy® nominated hit series on Discovery Science is all set to make a debut of its sixth and most provocative season from 4th July. It will be aired every Saturday at 10PM and will tackle tough topics as race, religion and our future as a species, and will challenge viewers as never before.  From the topics of bigotry to whether our reality is virtual to the human proclivity for lying, the new season will challenge everything you know about space, time and morality. 

GreenPeak announces new multi-channel chipset for STBs and other IoT devices

GreenPeak Technologies of the Netherlands , the industry leading Smart Home semiconductor/system company, on 30th June, 2015 announced the GP712, the industry’s first single radio multi-protocol chipset with multi-channel receive capability for set-top boxes, gateways, and other advanced IoT devices at no extra cost.

Sun group has not received any formal communication from the Ministries yet

According to the S. L. Narayanan, Chief Financial Officer of the Sun Group, the group has not received any formal communication yet either from the MHA or the MIB regarding the decision of not giving security clearances to 33 channels of the Sun Network. Earlier in March, clearance had been denied for the group’s FM radio channels as well.

Telecom industry all set to roll out MNP from 3rd July

Allowing an easy shifting between States and circles, the telecom industry is now all set to roll out  nationwide mobile number portability (MNP) for mobile users from July 3rd.

I&B not in a mood to replace Chauhan as FTII chaiman

Appointment of actor Gajendra Chauhan as Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) chairman agitated the FTII students leading to a massive protest of long 20 days. But it seems that the I&B ministry is still not in a mood to replace him.

Viacom18 set to introduce new English GEC

After its contribution in Music and satirical genre with channels like Comedy Central and VH1, Viacom18 is now all set to launch its English General Entertainment Channel (GEC).  The group has already received a license from the MIB for the same and is expected to launch the channel soon.

IndiaCast and Disney dissolve distribution agreement

The media distribution company, IndiaCast and Disney India have decided to dissolve their distribution contract, hinting that the television distribution business is in for further overhauls. Although the agreement deal expires in March 2016, sources said that it is ending prematurely. It also added that, a definite date for separation still remains unknown. 

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

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

Aadhaar leak: EPFO discontinues services provided through Common Service Centre

Following fear of Aadhaar data leak, the Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) on May 2 said it has discontinued services provided t...