[Satellite TODAY 07-28-10] Australian telco Optus has signed satellite capacity deals with regional broadcasters Southern Cross Media Group, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Special Broadcasting Service and Imparja Television, the company announced July 27. All four deals are for 10-year periods and will see the broadcasters deliver next-generation digital free-to-air television services via Optus Satellite to Australian households in areas were terrestrial digital TV signals cannot be received. Optus, which is owned by Singapore Telecom, said the contracts are part of an Australian government program which will transition the country’s analog free-to-air television signals to digital-only signals between 2010 and 2013. “Delivery of services via satellite continues to make sense for the size and scale of the Australian landscape and Optus’ satellite solutions are a proven technology for the delivery of television services. We look forward to continuing to work with the broadcasters and the government in ensuring that everyone can continue to enjoy free view television,” Optus Satellite Director Paul Sheridan said in a statement. Separately, Optus announced that it was awarded multiple contracts to supply mobile and satellite communications services to Australia’s Northern Territory government. Under the terms of the three-year agreement, all government agencies can procure the full suite of Optus mobile voice and data services, including mobile broadband, as well as Optus Thuraya mobile satellite services for voice coverage in remote areas. The government’s existing fleet includes more than 7000 mobile and 600 satellite phone services. Financial details of the contracts were not disclosed.