Eutelsat hosts 50% of satellite channels in Africa


Eutelsat at Satcom Africa announced several innovations:

New Resources and Services to Boost Broadcast and data Markets Across Africa, closing the infrastructure gap in Africa: innovative satellite solutions for affordable broadband access, launch of IP Easy service from Gulf of Guinea to Madagascar, Eutelsat video positions: a preferred choice for broadcasters reaching viewers across Africa and Indian Ocean Islands (More than 50% of satellite channels in these regions already broadcasting via Eutelsat), broadcasting resources to support progressive digital switchover, help connecting Africa to the world as two new Eutelsat satellites to enhance connectivity between Africa, Europe, Middle East, Asia.

With ICT development high on the agenda of all African countries, the annual Satcom Africa conference in Johannesburg is showcasing the long-term role played by satellite technologies in delivering affordable and ubiquitous access to digital services. Eutelsat Communications, one of the world's leading satellite operators, is at this key industry event to demonstrate new resources and solutions optimised to support markets for digital broadcasting, GSM backhauling, IP trunking, VSAT networks and broadband access.

Closing the infrastructure gap in Africa: IP Easy affordable IP access launches on Eutelsat 16A

In the broadband market, Eutelsat is taking the opportunity of SatCom Africa to unveil a new platform called IP Easy, a new platform to extend high-speed Internet access to residential and home office users as well as small and medium-sized enterprises across sub-Saharan Africa.

Combining the strengths of Ku-band capacity on the recently-launched Eutelsat 16A satellite with Newtec's successful Sat3Play® technology, IP Easy is available in a service area stretching from the Gulf of Guinea to Madagascar. The service delivers downlink speeds of up to 4Mbps and can support VOIP and reception of TV channels, in triple play mode. The selection of Newtec's Sat3Play® product which uses Point&Play self-installation also enables end users to autonomously install the complete system with no specific qualification needed or expensive tooling.

Broadcast satellites: the star performers for multi-channel reception in Africa

As the main platform for multi-channel reception, satellite is the star performer for broadcast services in Africa. Broadcast satellites deliver reach for nationwide and regional coverage and bandwidth for pay-TV platforms aggregating a diverse range of content including High-Definition television. According to Datixis, the number of satellite homes in Africa will experience a solid year-to-year growth in the coming years, up from 4.5 million in 2010 to 8.7 million in 2015 (+ 13% CAGR).

Channel growth in Africa and Indian Ocean outstrips all markets

Over 50% of the 1,250 satellite TV channels currently broadcasting in Africa and Indian Ocean islands use one of Eutelsat's market-leading video neighbourhoods. This means that 15% of the more than 4,000 TV channels broadcasting via Eutelsat are addressing these fast-developing markets.

Two key Eutelsat video neighbourhoods are driving growth:

The 36° East neighbourhood occupied by Eutelsat 36A and 36B is one of the two top positions for satellite TV across Africa. The DStv platform owned by MultiChoice and ZAP owned by ZON, the Portuguese operator, have both benefited from Eutelsat's continued investment in capacity at 36° East. New resources have facilitated the arrival of over 170 channels in two years, taking the count at 36° East to 300 channels.

The 16° East neighbourhood, already selected by Canal+ Overseas, Orange, Parabole Réunion and France Télévisions, is the broadcasting point of reference in Indian Ocean islands. Channels broadcasting from this neighbourhood increased by 40% to almost 150 in the 24 months to end 2011. The launch of the Eutelsat 16A satellite in October 2011 was a new landmark for 16° East increasing capacity and extending reach to open new broadcast opportunities in Western and Central Africa.

In addition to long-term favourable trends in pay-TV, the roll-out of Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) across Africa is expanding opportunities for satellite services. As African nations progressively move towards analogue switch-off, satellites are being called on for cost-effective delivery of digital multiplexes to terrestrial towers and for direct reception. Pioneering clients using Eutelsat for DVB-T broadcast delivery include the StarTimes platform that uses two Eutelsat satellites to transmit to terrestrial retransmitters in 10 African countries and recently announced sales of over one million set-top-boxes.

New satellites to launch for Africa to enhance connectivity between Middle East, Europe, Asia, Africa

Two new innovative and highly flexible satellite programmes will be showcased at SatCom Africa: Eutelsat 70B, due for launch end 2012, and Eutelsat 3B, to be launched in early 2014.

These satellites are designed to provide ISPs, telecom and mobile phone operators, video companies and government service providers with regional coverage and connectivity between Africa, Europe, the Middle East, Asia and as far as Australia.

Unique of its kind, Eutelsat 70B is designed to optimise resources from a single orbital slot at the crossroads between Europe, Africa, Asia and Australia. With high frequency reuse, four powerful regional beams connected to 48 Ku-band transponders will be located on a single platform. Eutelsat 70B will more than double current capacity at 70.5° East for data and government services, broadband access, GSM backhauling and professional video exchanges.

Eutelsat 3B is a tri-band satellite (C, Ku, Ka) designed to increase and diversify resources for markets in Africa, the Middle East, Central Asia and South America. Users will select the most relevant frequency band for different types of service. Ku and C-band capacity will further consolidate response to broadcast and data markets. High throughput beams in the Ka-band, that will be individually steerable to regional and national markets and operated with scalable allocation of power and spectrum, will support innovative applications in bandwidth-demanding markets.

A SatCom Star Award 2012 was attributed by industry executives to Eutelsat.

This year’s judging panel was made up of industry leaders including, Bradley Shaw, Managing Editor, Africa Telecoms, Bill Hearmon, Chairman, African 4G Broadband Forum, Russell Southwood, Chief Executive Officer, Balancing Act and David Hartshorn, Secretary General, Global VSAT Forum.

The Award was attributed by industry executives to Eutelsat for its exceptional customer satisfaction levels and its response to changing needs in Africa. It recognises Eutelsat’s longstanding commitment to developing resources and services to address markets across Africa for digital broadcasting, GSM backhauling, IP trunking, VSAT networks and broadband access.

For more information on the SatCom Star Awards click here: