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Premiere Gains Fresh Support From STB Industry

By | August 14, 2002

      Premiere, the ill-fated German pay-TV broadcaster majority owned by troubled media company Kirch Group, has recently gained fresh support from the receiver manufacturers. Joining Humax, Galaxis, TechniSat, Hirschmann and Samsung, German set-top-box (STB) manufacturer Kathrein has commenced manufacturing Premiere-compliant digital receivers.

      The set-top-box “UFD 530,” which will become available to consumers in September, features an embedded Betacrypt conditional access module, storage capacity for 4,000 channels, two common interface slots, DiSEqC-1.2 and an electronic audio output for Dolby Digital AC3 sound. The receiver’s software can be updated over the air via satellite or by using the RS232 interface.

      Meanwhile, Galaxis has extended its summer offer in which the buyers of its Premiere-compliant STB Easy World gain a one-year subscription to the pay-TV broadcaster’s introductory offer Premiere Start at no charge. The deal was extended by one month to Aug. 31. “The summer offer has been an overwhelming success,” said Marco Stuhr, head of the German receiver manufacturer’s marketing department. “The beginning of the new football season and the launch of new attractive offers by Premiere have resulted in a considerably increased demand.”

      After the recently announced results of its strict cost-saving plan and the granting of a new loan by its banks (see Interspace 749), Premiere’s future now seems to be much less in doubt than at the outset of the collapse of Kirch Group’s empire in April.

      –Jorn Krieger

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