France Tlvisions launches digital public broadcasting for Runion Island and Mayotte
December 6th, 2010 - 15:13 UTC
by Andy Sennitt.

One week after Frances national public broadcaster initiated delivery via the W2A satellite of Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) channels to terrestrial towers in Runion Island and Mayotte, France Tlvisions and Eutelsat Communications have announced that a second satellite signal has been opened to enable commercial operators in the region to integrate digital public channels into their platforms.

Using capacity on Eutelsats W2A satellite to deliver channels to terrestrial towers, the launch of DTT on December 1 enables the population of both Indian Ocean islands to access an offer of 10 free-to-air digital channels, compared to the previous offer of one over-the-air analogue channel, Tempo.

France Tlvisions is now taking digital broadcasting a further step forward with the launch of a second satellite signal, operated at Eutelsats 16degrees East position, which already serves all commercial operators in francophone Indian Ocean islands. This new signal enables France Tlvisions to meet its obligations to complement terrestrial broadcasting with Direct-to-Home satellite reception and also to ensure the availability of public channels to commercial platforms.

Nine public service channels (France 2, France 3, France 4, France 5, France O, Arte, France 24, Reunion 1re and Mayotte 1re) are uplinked by France Tlvisions direct to Eutelsat capacity from metropolitan France. TDF, that operates the terrestrial broadcast network in Reunion Island and Mayotte, subsequently adds on site the signals of the two local commercial channels, Antenne Runion and Tele Kreol.

The contract concluded between Eutelsat and France Tlvisions represents the equivalent of a full transponder, which is currently operated on W2A at 10 degrees East for technical services to terrestrial towers, and on W2M at 16 degrees East for Direct-to-Home satellite reception by homes beyond range of terrestrial reception and for channel availability to commercial operators. Following the scheduled arrival in mid-2011 of Eutelsats W3C satellite at 16 degrees East, France Tlvisions will concentrate all digital services for francophone Indian Ocean islands at a single neighbourhood.