Nagra confirms Tivu-Sat win

Nagravision, as expected, has confirmed it will provide conditional access to Italy’s new Tivu-sat system. It is somewhat strange that a self-proclaimed ‘free-to-view’ bouquet of Italian public broadcast networks needs to encrypt its programming, and will certainly disappoint Italian expats living outside the country, who – until now – had enjoyed unfettered access to their programming from home for years past.

Tivu-sat goes live in June, and will contain Italy’s publicly-supported networks from national broadcaster RAI as well as channels from Mediaset, the commercial operator ultimately owned by the Berlusconi family.

A statement from Nagra said: “Channels available on the new Tivu Sat set-top box are the same as the ones viewed free today on DTT set-top boxes. Channels include RAI 1, RAI 2, RAI 3, RAI 4, CANALE 5, ITALIA 1, RETE 4, LA7, BOING, IRIS, along with many others., The Tivu Sat channels will be scrambled with Nagravision and decoded with smartcards to enforce the rights of sports and movies suppliers, thus ensuring that content shall not be viewed outside of the Italian territory.”

It is estimated that up to two million families may require the Tivý Sat set-top boxes as a consequence of the upcoming analog switch off. The retail price of the smartcard, though not currently defined, is expected to remain low, while covering the cost of the cards. No subscription fees will be charged to the consumer and there is no expiration date on the smartcard.

"The analog switch off is coming, and yet, millions of households will require support and services to keep their analog sets receiving signals," said Carlo Stramaglia, Head of Nagravision Italy. "It's an honour to be selected for this ambitious project and to play a key role in keeping services available to these families."

Tivu is a joint venture between Mediaset (48%), RAI (48%) and Telecom Italia Media (4%). The main focus of this JV is to be the entity that will drive the transition from the terrestrial analog broadcast system to the digital one. Tivu will act as the "umbrella" brand for all the analogue national and regional broadcasters that are currently migrating to the new digital terrestrial transmission (DTT) system. Tivu will also provide the satellite service called "Tivu Sat" that will allow users, living in the Italian territory that will not be covered by the DTT signal, to enjoy the DTT TV channels using a satellite set-top box.