Eutelsat to support FTA digital TV in Fiji | Satellite | News | Rapid TV News
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Fiji’s free-to-air (FTA) digital TV services are to be expanded following a multi-year agreement between state digital TV infrastructure company Walesi and satellite operator Eutelsat.

Eutelsat 172B 22 Nov 2017The deal will provide C-band capacity on the Eutelsat 172B satellite to complement terrestrial coverage of Walesi’s digital television platform.

Walesi’s direct-to-home (DTH) platform will deliver a digital TV service to even the most remote rural and maritime areas of Fiji, which cannot be reached by terrestrial networks.

The satellite-based platform will initially provide access to six digital FTA channels via a set-top box (STB). Walesi will release details of the DTH roll-out and Government-subsidised boxes in the coming weeks.

“This universal satellite coverage will be transformational for Fiji in three ways: it will provide better access to information to all Fijians, especially those in remote, deep rural and maritime communities; it will further Fiji’s standing as an international telecommunications hub for the entire Pacific region; and it will fortify the climate resilience of our infrastructure,” said Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum, Attorney-General and Minister for Communications, Fiji.

“This is just the beginning; going forward, our partnership with Eutelsat will allow the Government to fulfil our vision of providing video, data, and voice access to every community in Fiji.”

Walesi is installing over 17 major communications and broadcast sites around Fiji, which will be managed on a neutral host model. These major sites will be complemented by micro sites in remote and maritime regions that will be supported by bidirectional satellite capacity to expand data, video, and voice connectivity.

Michel Azibert, chief commercial and development officer, Eutelsat, added: “This agreement reflects not only the value of our new Eutelsat 172B satellite in complex geographies such as Fiji, but also the immediate impact of satellite broadcasting for nationwide coverage of digital TV. We are delighted to be working with Walesi to promote access to free-to-air television for all and to be part of the effort to bridge the digital divide”.

Eutelsat’s new, all-electric satellite entered commercial service earlier this month.