The digital catalyst for Africa expansion

Through ingenious technical design, build and operation, we were able to deliver a hugely ambitious, new multi-country DTT platform in Africa.

two men on sofa watching tv

Challenge

For the Canal+ Group, and its shareholders, expanding into sub-Saharan Africa was a strategic priority. The Group had already gained a solid foothold in the continent with its DTH pay-TV satellite package. It was time to consolidate a leading position and push ahead. The award of new Digital Terrestrial TV (DTT) licenses in the region was the catalyst the business had been looking for.

The question, among so many others, was how to begin. This hugely ambitious, multi-country project required the development of a completely new DTT platform, the aggregation and transcoding of existing terrestrial channels, not to mention a fault-free roll-out. Timescales were tight, and the budget was fixed.

Solution

With content the Group’s core business, Canal+ wanted to outsource all technical design, build and operation to a partner it could trust. Arqiva’s successful track record supporting the DTH pay-TV service made it the logical choice. The project team got to work immediately – architecting the platform that would ultimately deliver over 30 digital channels of compelling national and international content to audiences across sub-Saharan Africa.

Hosted and managed in Arqiva’s Paris facility, the platform does it all – from content transcoding, through encryption and mixing, to delivery, via an uplink site, to the EUTELSAT3B@3E broadcast satellite.

The project was delivered on time, and in budget. The first DTT package, Easy TV, launched in the Republic of Congo in early 2016. Expansion to other French-speaking African territories is now high on the Canal+ agenda.

Results

  • Design, build and operation of a completely new DTT platform in sub-Saharan Africa
  • Fully redundant platform with transmission securely delivered, managed and monitored in a dedicated 24/7 MCR
  • Application of new, standardised DVBT2 technology to optimise satellite bandwidth, and use of shared infrastructure to minimise costs
  • Easily scalable to expand (or add new) SD or HD channels, and to extend services to additional French-speaking West African countries

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