In a strategic move aimed at enhancing the viewing experience for audiences, France Televisions, the French public broadcaster, has inked a multi-year contract with Eutelsat Communications to broadcast two 4K channels on both terrestrial and satellite networks.
The two channels, France 2 UHD (a full-time channel) and France 3 UHD (a part-time UHD channel dedicated to special events), will be distributed through satellite to terrestrial transmitters across the French territory. Additionally, they will be available Direct-to-Home (DTH) via the Fransat platform. The broadcasting will be facilitated by the EUTELSAT 5 West B satellite, utilizing the innovative DVB-SIS (Single Illumination System) transmission technology standard.
This technology allows France Televisions to utilize a single content source, simplifying distribution to both the terrestrial network backbone (DTT) and Direct-to-Home reception via Fransat. The rollout of these channels is strategically timed, with services set to commence by early 2024, in anticipation of the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The transition to Ultra High Definition (UHD) or 4K broadcasting promises viewers a heightened level of immersion with image quality four times richer than Full HD and twice as many images per second. By incorporating satellite transmission into their UHD distribution strategy, France Televisions aims to ensure widespread access to high-quality content delivery, catering to diverse audiences across vast territories.
“Eutelsat has provided us with an innovative and competitive solution for feeding terrestrial and satellite networks. Eutelsat’s technical expertise and quality of services were decisive for us,” remarked Jacques Donat-Bouillud, Head of Distribution for France Televisions.
Laurence Delpy, General Manager of Eutelsat’s Video Business Unit, emphasized the efficiency of France Televisions’ distribution strategy, stating, “By incorporating this mutualized approach in their distribution strategy, feeding both terrestrial and satellite networks from a single source, France Televisions is efficiently ensuring that all viewers across the French territory can enjoy the 4K quality programs, no matter where they are located.”
This collaboration marks a significant step in ensuring a seamless and superior viewing experience for French audiences, demonstrating the commitment of both France Televisions and Eutelsat to harness cutting-edge technology for the benefit of viewers nationwide.