Astra to pull analogue plug in 2012

SES Astra will terminate analogue TV distribution on its satellite system in three years’ time at the latest.

“Astra will say goodbye to the phase-out model of analogue television by the end of 2012,” writes Wolfgang Elsäßer, managing director of Astra Deutschland, in the cover letter of the September edition of the company’s newsletter Astra aktuell. “The way will then be free for television that’s new, more advanced and appropriate for the 21st century.”

There are currently 38 analogue TV channels still on the Astra position 19.2° East, all of them, with the exception of CNN International, from Germany. 74.1% of German satellite households have already switched to digital television. Astra Deutschland launched a broad scale digitalisation campaign at the beginning of May in order to prompt the remaining 5 million analogue households to make the change to digital.

During international consumer electronics fair Internationale Funkausstellung in Berlin earlier this month public broadcasters ARD and ZDF announced their intention to switch off the analogue satellite distribution of their channels in early 2012.

(Source: Rapid TV News)