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One day ahead of the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show, where Ultra HD is set to be a continuing hot trend, satellite operator Eutelsat Communications has confirmed the launch of two new Ultra HD channels at its popular HOTBIRD video neighbourhood. Fashion TV’s new Ultra HD channel, FTV UHD and Travelxp 4K, the world’s first 4K travel channel, have concluded multi-year contracts with Eutelsat to leverage HOTBIRD’s market-leading penetration into cable and IPTV networks across Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.
FTV UHD made its debut on HOTBIRD on 23 December while Travelxp 4K starts broadcasting from January, 2017. Both channels have selected HEVC encoding with 10bits of colour depth (one billion colours), at 50 frames per second.
The strong image and awareness of the Fashion TV brand projects a unique, cosmopolitan and modern style. Building on the one-of-a-kind Fashion TV brand, FTV UHD is setting a new standard in fashion and lifestyle broadcasting through original programming on style and trends offered with exceptional image quality.
“Since the launch of our first fashion-themed channel on a Eutelsat satellite in 1997 we have developed a unique and comprehensive brand with high-quality broadcasting at its core,” stated FTV UHD’s CEO, Michel Adam Lisowski. “We made the leap to High Definition ten years after the launch of our first digital channel on Eutelsat’s fleet. Today, we are excited to pursue our commitment to the highest quality of broadcasting standards through an Ultra HD channel offering Eutelsat’s HOTBIRD homes exceptional images of the latest fashion events from around the world. Eutelsat is our fashionable and lucky HOTBIRD.”
Available in seven languages, Travelxp 4K, features hundreds of hours of world class travel programmes filmed all over the world. The 4K channel follows the success of Travelxp HD, which offers 100 per cent originally-produced premium travel and lifestyle programming distributed to over 50 million homes globally. It will also broadcast in 10 bits REC 2020 colour space using the new HDR (High Dynamic Range) standard developed by the BBC and NHK that creates richer and more dynamic images by increasing the contrast ratio between the lightest and darkest areas of the screen and expanding the volume of colours displayed. This standard uses HLG (Hybrid Log-Gamma) technology, enabling legacy Standard Dynamic (SDR) displays to decode the HDR standard.
“Travelxp 4K is all about bringing the world to homes in stunning resolution,” explained Travelxp 4K’ CEO, Prashant Chothani. “Ten bit REC 2020 with HLG, HDR will make the viewing experience more immersive and vivid. It’s not just about more pixels in 4K but better pixels. We are proud to reinforce our partnership with Eutelsat and to benefit from their vast knowledge of the Ultra HD broadcasting chain. Joining the HOTBIRD neighbourhood and gaining access to a unique and ethnically diverse population pool is a natural step for us that will fast-track penetration of Travelxp 4K into homes across Europe, North Africa and the Middle East.”
“The launch of FTV UHD and Travelxp 4K is new evidence of the move by content producers to Ultra HD,” declared Michel Azibert, Eutelsat’s Chief Commercial and Development Officer. “Their trust in Eutelsat reflects our commitment to delivering service that guarantees viewers an enriched and unrivalled Ultra HD experience. We are proud to support these new channels and look forward to accelerating their distribution across the vast footprint provided by our HOTBIRD video neighbourhood.”