France Télévisions chooses Eutelsat for UHD
November 13, 2023
By Chris Forrester
Eutelsat, already one of the two defacto suppliers of French television signals, has been selected to transmit UHD signals for France Télévisions. Eutelsat has been a strong supporter of 4K transmissions and has consistently backed UHD development for programme production and transmission. Canal Plus and its multi-channel offering, uses signals from rival satellite operator SES.
France Télévisions has signed a multi-year contract with Eutelsat to broadcast two 4K channels on both terrestrial and satellite networks. France 2 UHD, a full-time channel, and France 3 UHD, a part-time UHD channel dedicated to special events will be distributed via satellite to terrestrial transmitters across the French territory, as well as DTH via the Fransat platform.
The channels will be broadcast via the Eutelsat 5 West B satellite using the new DVB-SIS (Single Illumination System) transmission technology standard. This enables France Télévisions to use a single content source, combining distribution to both the terrestrial network backbone (DTT) and DTH reception via Fransat, the free-to-view satellite platform for French DTT channels. In preparation for the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, the service is scheduled to start by early 2024.
Jacques Donat-Bouillud, Head of Distribution for France Télévisions, commented: “With 4K standards, France Télévisions is delighted to be able to bring our France 2 and France 3 channels to our viewers with exceptional picture and sound quality. Eutelsat has provided us with an innovative and competitive solution for feeding terrestrial and satellite networks. Eutelsat’s technical expertise and quality of services were decisive for us.”
Laurence Delpy, GM of Eutelsat’s Video Business Unit, added: “We are honoured to have been chosen by France Télévisions for the first launch of a public UHD channel, and the first deployment of the DVB-SIS standard in France. By incorporating this mutualized approach in their distribution strategy, feeding both terrestrial and satellite networks from a single source, France Télévisions is efficiently ensuring that all viewers across the French territory can enjoy the 4K quality programmes, no matter where they are located.”