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Eutelsat provides first live demo of smart LNB

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At IBC this year the Eutelsat stand will host the first live demonstration of the recently announced interactive ‘smart LNB’. This is a new-generation electronic feed connected to an antenna with an embedded transmitter that enables broadcasters and platform operators to bolt interactive value-added services onto their broadcast platforms, circumventing viewer dependency on terrestrial fixed and mobile networks.

Fully compatible with existing consumer satellite equipment, the ‘smart LNB’ is based on open standards and highly efficient protocols developed by Eutelsat for the connection link, combined with optimized use of satellite spectrum in multiple frequency bands (C, Ku, Ka). As an IP-based tool, it will enable content to be viewed on mobile devices in the home like smartphones, tablets, and laptops.

Eutelsat believes ‘smart LNB’ will transform mass-market Direct-to-Home satellite services. Typical uses could be to provide HbbTV services, pay-per-view, social networking, live show participation, personal subscription management and audience measurement.

“This new product meets increasing consumer expectation to manage and interact with content and also prepares the ground for machine-to-machine and home automation applications,” Eutelsat said of the innovation when it was announced this summer. “It opens the door for broadcasters to operate their own ecosystem of linear television and connected TV services directly by satellite.”

The proof-of-concept and first prototypes have been tested over Eutelsat satellites and are ready for validation with platform operators and partners. Eutelsat has launched the industrialization process for the product and it should be available commercially next year. While its most obvious market seems to be homes without good fixed (or even mobile) broadband connectivity, this should be a notable demonstration.

“Building on Eutelsat’s track record for innovation that broadens the scope and competitiveness of satellite services, the ‘smart LNB’ will enable broadcast players to more efficiently serve their customer base and diversify the range and nature of applications offered, from direct customer support to audience measurement and enhanced security,” Jean-François Leprince-Ringuet, Eutelsat’s Chief Commercial Officer, said when the product launched in late July. “This new technology can benefit satellite homes with limited options for the return link as well as mature markets where platform operators are seeking to build and sustain a close direct relationship with their subscriber base.”

You can see the demonstration on Eutelsat’s stand at IBC.

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