German Free TV Group joins HD+ platform

By Robert Briel

July 20, 2009 08.19 UK

ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG will broadcast its three main channels, Sat.1, ProSieben and kabel eins, in HD versions as part of the new HD+ platform on Astra at 19.2 degrees East. The three channels from the German Free TV Group will join Vox and RTL from RTL Germany from January, 2010.

The addition of the channels will bring the total of channels in the HD+ platform to five. The move also implies that all major German public and commercial channels will be available in HD from January 2010 onwards. At that time pubcasters ARD and ZDF will also take up regular HD broadcasts of their main channels.

“The fact that we are now able to offer our three channels via HD+ is a milestone in terms of our technology and quality offering for our viewers. The HD+ offer is coming at exactly the right time for us. Meanwhile there are more than 13 million HD-ready flat screen TVs in households, which means that viewers can enjoy our HD content in its entirety,” said Andreas Bartl, Managing Director German Free TV Group of ProSiebenSat.1 Media AG.

“With the transmission of our programmes in HD quality we are pushing digitalisation in Germany. We will now focus on developing new content and offers for this new standard,” said Dr. Marcus Englert, Director New Media & Diversification of ProSiebenSat1 Media AG.

Receivers for the HD+ platform will be available this autumn. Manufacturers are expected to show the first models at this year’s IFA consumer electronics show in Berlin.

The HD+ platform will use the Nagravision CA system and pre-paid smart cards will be made available with a 12 month credit. Cards can be updated using a variety of methods.