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First HDTV digital cable broadcaster in Europe?

Discussion in 'Televisions' started by Byte, Jun 15, 2004.

  1. Byte

    Byte
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    Here in Finland the largest cable broadcaster HTV has started to broadcast HDTV in digital network (DVB-C). Now, the broadcast will include only Euro1080, but HTV is planning to broadcast other channels in HDTV alsoi in the near future. I think this is a major step for HDTV broadcasting in Europe! :clap:
     
  2. Starburst

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    Excellent news:)
    You only have to look at the US where cable is easily matching Sat for High Def distribution to see the possibilites in Europe.
     
  3. TobyS

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    This sounds like great news to me as I would love to receive HDTV but don't want a satellite dish on the side of my house. Being in the UK though, I have to wonder whether we'll ever see this sort of commitment to future development from our cable companies.

    I'm afraid I am a complete novice when it comes to the technical side of broadcasting, so could somebody please tell me whether or not it's technically feasible for a company like NTL to carry an HDTV channel. Would it require a major overhaul of the network infrastructure, or could they simply send it down the pipes the same way they would an ordinary SDTV channel? If this is the case then their only real expenditure would surely just be the new STBs which we'd pay for out of our monthly bill anyway, so they'd make the money back from them and then some.

    If the cable companies' argument for not carrying HDTV is that there isn't much demand for it, (in other words, not many people have HDTV screens) one could argue that the reason so few of us have HDTV screens is because HDTV isn't available on cable.

    Someone needs to take the first step. Either we invest in HDTV screens and create demand for an HDTV service, or the cable companies invest in HDTV and create a demand for HDTV screens. Personally I can't see NTL taking the first step, (at least not any time soon - it's taken them 5 years to finally announce a VOD service, I'd expect a similar wait for any other new services) but until HDTV is available on cable networks I, and many other people will have have little reason to buy HDTVs. Quite a conundrum.

    Out of interest, which came first in Finland, the HDTV screens of the HDTV service? I would be interested to see how this develops. If the service really does create demand for HDTV screens then this will set a nice precedent. Me thinks a petition to NTL would then be in order.

    Regards

    Toby
     
  4. Starburst

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    NTL are putting all their eggs into VOD(Video on Demand) and looking at their track record (still using analogue in some areas!) I can't see that service being delivered on time and at a price point that is reasonable and profitable.
    Their cable modem service is good but their network can't cope with the knee jerk reactions of the marketing and managment suits when they react to TW and BT service upgrades hence the ill-thought out 1gb cap added to the APU.
     
  5. Byte

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    The HTV has promised to bring HDTV equipment (screens & receivers) out to the market during next year. New LCD and plasma screens already support HDTV resolutions so the only problem are cable receivers. The new digital television standard (DVB) supports higher resolutions and bitrate so it's possible to broadcast HDTV in Europe. Isn't the TV network going digital there in UK and rest of the Europe also? Here in Finland the analog network is going down before autumn 2007. That's why the digital cable, satellite and antenna networks are already quite popular in Finland.
     

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