Premiere Thema to add Conax encryption

German pay-TV operator Premiere will cease to employ Nagravision as its exclusive encryption system. As part of a collaboration with set-top-box manufacturer TechniSat, from the first quarter of 2008 its programme package Premiere Thema on Astra (19.2° East) will be encrypted in Conax in addition to Nagravision.

The bouquet will be accessible with the TechniSat smart card which is available with digital satellite receivers and HD-Vision series LCD television sets manufactured by TechniSat with the Conax system integrated. Customers can test Premiere Thema for two months without charge and will receive a further free month after registering the smart card with TechniSat. At the expiration of the test period, Premiere Thema can be subscribed to directly through Premiere.

“With Premiere’s premium content on TechniSat’s Conax set-top-box population, TechniSat can offer its customers further, highly attractive added value,” said Peter Lepper, TechniSat’s general manager. “With the decision to encrypt Premiere Thema not only in Nagravision, but also in Conax and thereby making the package available on TechniSat receivers, Premiere is significantly increasing its technical reach. The new agreement therefore offers advantages to both contract parties.”

Customers who wish to receive the complete Premiere package, including live transmissions of soccer’s Bundesliga matches, need a digital receiver which employs Nagravision as its built-in encryption system or can be upgraded through a common interface slot.

The move marks Premiere’s second turning away from Nagravision, having recently decided to encrypt part of its bouquet for Austrian DTH households from November 2 in Cryptoworks, the system used by Austrian public broadcaster ORF.

Premiere Thema offers 15 thematic television channels and seven radio stations from EUR 9.99 per month, including RTL Crime, Discovery Channel, 13th Street, Sci Fi, MGM Channel, Jetix, Focus Gesundheit, GoldStar TV and Beate-Uhse.TV. The bouquet is marketed by Premiere Star, a joint venture of Premiere, credit institute HypoVereinsbank and EM.Sport Media. Until now, the TechniSat smart card gave access only to its own pay-radio package and MTV’s digital bouquet.

(Source: Rapid TV News 2007)