3+ Switzerland launches on Astra
Jörn Krieger | 14-12-2012
Swiss commercial broadcaster 3+ has commenced satellite distribution of its channel on Astra (19.2° East), resulting in its technical reach growing by around 400,000 DTH households in Switzerland.
The signal is encrypted to restrict reception to Switzerland. For reception, viewers need the Sat Access smartcard provided by Swiss public broadcaster SRG. 3+ has so far only been available via cable and IPTV in Switzerland.
Signing up 3+ is strategically important for Astra satellite operator SES as it is the first domestic Swiss broadcaster to use the Luxembourg-based satellite system. SRG's channels are on Eutelsat's competing Hot Bird (13° East) system. Astra has so far only been used by German commercial TV groups RTL and ProSiebenSat.1 to distribute the Swiss advertising and programme windows of their German channels.
"The decision of 3+ to partner with Astra for its satellite transmission is an important milestone in the development of the Swiss market," said Wolfgang Elsäßer, managing director of Astra Deutschland and also responsible for Austria and Switzerland. It is expected that DTH satellite reception via Astra will become even more attractive through the addition of the popular channel.
"With the transmission of 3+ on Astra, we close the last distribution gap and are now also available via satellite," said Dominik Kaiser, CEO of 3 Plus Group. "We have found a very competent partner in Astra and are looking forward to our collaboration."