Sat-UK-News #270 26.07.98: Holiday Round-up

Sat-UK-News Report #270:
Holiday Round-up
- Sky's new movie channels
- Erotica: Channel Bizarre and Eros TV
- Canal+ Poland gearing up
- No more Nederland 1-3
- Thor 3 being doing tests
Sunday 26.07.98
Email: dsedghi@TELE-Satellite.com OR dominic@bigrp.demon.co.uk
UK Satellite Control: http://www.sat-net.com/uk-satellite/
And now the news:

---------- Sky's new movie channels
 According to reports, and the Sky TV Guide, only a few months after
changing the names of two of its movie channels, Sky is planning to
change them again. Sky Movies Gold will change its name to Sky Cinema,
and will still show the same classic movies, being free to subscribers
of the other two channels. The other two channels will change their
names to Sky Premier, which will show premieres, first-run movies and
blockbuster hits, and Sky Moviemax, which will show a variety of general
entertainment movies. These changes are scheduled to go ahead on
September 10th.
 So why are Sky doing this? Well, no doubt it will cause hassle to most
movie subscribers, in the form of them being a little pissed off.
However, the reasons would be good ones. Sky will shortly be launching
its movie channels in digital: Sky Movies 1 & 2, 1A & 2A, 1B & 2B and 1C
& 2C. Although these will probably be NVOD versions of Sky Movies 1 & 2,
they are currently showing different movies - all eight! To consolidate
all this in analogue would be difficult, as the Sky Movies 1 & 2 would
not be the same as the digital channels. In addition, current
subscribers can subscribe to one or both movie channels, but both movie
channels show the same sort of stuff. BOTH show blockbusters, BOTH show
premieres and BOTH show first-run movies; thus if you subscribe to
Screen 1, you're going to miss all the premieres on Screen 2. By putting
all the premieres on one channel, and all the other movies on the other,
Sky are enabling you to secure exactly what you want to watch.
 Apparently also in the Sky TV Guide are the new Sky Sports logos; I
haven't received mine yet, so I can't comment. What I have noticed is
that Sky are 'freezing the prices' of their most popular packages for up
to twelve months. Wow! No price increases - now my neighbour can afford
to subscribe at last! Erm...
 Sky have also increased the number of operating MCE channels in their
digital package. There are now an extra 24 MCE channels in operation,
bringing the number up to the total 50 (I think!).

---------- Erotica: Channel Bizarre and Eros TV
 Eros TV is now available in the clear on HotBird 3, 12.149 V. It's in
digital, and is running from midnight to 4am every night. In addition,
the latest hardcore porn channel from the Netherlands, Channel Bizarre,
which contains the strangest content of programming available, is now
broadcasting on Eutelsat II-F3, 11.163 H, from midnight to 4am every
night. It's encrypted in Eurocrypt, being transmitted in D2-MAC.

---------- Canal+ Poland gearing up
 Canal+ Poland has started testing packages on both HotBird 3, 12.466 V
(no package there at the moment though), and Thor 2, 11.403 V. According
to a recent disagreement, Canal+ Poland will not have to use the same CA
module as the other Polish digital broadcaster, Wizja TV, who currently
use Cryptoworks. Canal+ Poland will probably use Mediaguard. Currently
on the following channels have been seen in Canal+ Poland: Canal+
Poland, Seasons, Planete, Polsat, Cine Classics and Cine Cinemas.

---------- No more Nederland 1-3
 Viewers of Nederland 1-3 and listeners of Radio 1-5 are in for a shock.
The channels have recently left their spot on Astra 1G, 12.012 V, and
have encrypted on their frequency on Astra 1F, 12.344 H. Dutch
enthusiasts who previously capitalized on the Netherlands' channels'
clear transmissions by inputting the PIDs will now get only a black
screen. Also, during my absence, many of you may have noticed the
termination of the TV guide channel for Canal+ Netherlands, TV Vandaag.

---------- Thor 3 being doing tests
 Thor 3 has been testing on almost all frequencies. I've been away so I
haven't been able to check it out, but if anyone has reception reports,
I'm now open for business!

All contents (C) 1998 Dominic Sedghi, except where indicated. All rights
reserved. Contents may be reproduced providing the following is
included: "Provided by Sat-UK, a part of TELE-Satellite". Information is
subject to change and/or may be incorrect.

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