By Terry Bleakley, Regional Vice President, Asia-Pacific Sales
Television broadcasters and cable providers that rely on satellites for program delivery don’t want “almost” 100% reliability — they want exactly 100%, with no chance whatsoever that a signal might fail and cut off a video feed.
Intelsat builds value for broadcasters at its video neighborhoods around the globe by maintaining penetration into all markets and providing a growth path for content owners as they enter a region and build a programming lineup. But perhaps even more important, we provide a satellite and ground infrastructure that includes launching and operating multiple satellites over a region, essential to full reliability in the event of technical problem on one of the spacecraft.
An example of this resilience is the recent launch of Intelsat 36, which has Ku-band transponders to serve Africa and a C-band payload to provide resilience for our media customers in the Indian Ocean region (IOR), from Africa to western Australia. IS 36 will provide backup over the IOR for Intelsat 17 and Intelsat 20. These two satellites, along with IS-18 and IS-19, carry more TV and radio channels on C-band in the Asia-Pacific arc than any other satellite operator.
Intelsat’s IS-20 and IS-17 provide programming to India that represents more than half of the total content seen by viewers, the highest share of any satellite operator. TV channels distributed by Intelsat in India via these two satellites not only dominate viewership share but also attract the lion’s share of advertising expenditures for our media customers.
The C-band payload on Intelsat 36 provides resilience for IS-17, located in an orbital slot at 66 degrees east, and IS-20, at 68.5 degrees east, where IS-36 is now co-located. The beam footprints of the three satellites stretch all the way from England to Australia, allowing satellite access through a range of ground stations linked to the global IntelsatOne fiber network.
The programming content sent through IS-20 is downlinked in the IOR by all of the top cable multiple-system operators, as well as direct-to-home operators who then re-uplink to their own DTH satellites. IS-20 provides full quasi-global coverage on a single satellite solution and carries over 280 channels of programming to serve over 100 million cable subscribers and 50 million DTH subscribers.
The other satellite, IS-17, carries more than 150 channels, including channels from Sony and Discovery. IS-17 also carries channels from Sun TV and many of the non-Hindi regional channels in the IOR.
The satellites serve markets that are among Intelsat’s 43 distinct video neighborhoods, connecting viewers to the world’s prime broadcast, cable and DTH systems. Coupled with Intelsat’s unmatched cable head-end penetration, the three satellites insure that our media customers can maximize viewership of their content in their target markets, and can count on 100% reliability.