Dutch regional broadcasters switch to MPEG-4
By Robert Briel
Published: December 23, 2010 09.15 Europe/London

Dutch regional public broadcasters Omroep Zeeland and RTV Drenthe will switch to MPEG-4 satellite distribution in order to save costs on the space segment. Four out of the ten channels have decided to stop DTH broadcasting altogether.

Omroep Brabant, L1 Limburg, RTV Noord Holland and RTV Rijnmond will cease satellite distribution on December 31. These broadcasters have taken the decision to abandon their DTH audience as part of their cost cutting measures.

M7 Group’s Canal Digitaal Satelliet has won the new contract for distribution of a number of regional public broadcasters via the Astra 3 position at 23.5 degrees East. Until now, a total of 10 regional channels has been available on this position as free-to-air broadcasts in MPEG-.

From January 1, 2011, just six regional broadcasters – Omrop Frylan, TV Drenthe, TV Gelderland, TV Noord, Omroep Zeeland and TV Oost – will remain available on satellite. For the moment, all channels broadcast in MPEG-2, and a switch over to MPEG-4 is expected sometime in the spring.