Thomson Delivers DVB-H Infrastructure for DigitALB Mobile Television

Saturday, April 14th, 2007

Powerful Thomson Statistical Encoding Delivers 14 High Quality Signals in a Single DVB-H Multiplex

LAS VEGAS (National Association of Broadcasters Convention — Booths N902/SL2020) — DigitALB, the leading commercial media enterprise in Albania, has launched a 14 channel mobile television service based on a fully redundant Grass Valley’s Mobile TV system from Thomson (Euronext Paris: 18453; NYSE: TMS).

To reduce fixed costs linked to bandwidth use while transmitting high quality images suitable for the larger screens of PDAs as well as mobile phones, DigitALB has elected to use Grass Valley’s powerful statistical encoding and time slicing technology. This feature – a major breakthrough in the case of Mobile TV – optimizes dynamically the compression rate at the Argos encoder level and time slicing policy at the Opal DVB-H IP encapsulator. Its effect is a significant quality/bandwidth ratio improvement up to 25% depending on picture content complexity.

“For mobile television to succeed requires a service that is attractive to audiences which means a broad spectrum of content” said Christophe Delahousse, senior vice president of the Video Network Solutions group within Grass Valley. “Providing a large choice of content whilst reducing networks costs can now be achieved with intelligent , integrated and comprehensive solutions. Grass Valley has this complete offer available now, and DigitALB is an excellent flagship of what can be achieved with DVB-H technology.”

DigitALB is part of Topmedia Group which owns a wide range of media enterprises including newspapers, radio and video post production facilities as well as terrestrial and satellite channels. Its Top Channel is the most popular television channel in the country. It has added mobile television with the aim of covering 80% of the population as well as all the tourist areas as Albania opens its borders.

DigitALB’s mobile TV services offering is managed by the Thomson’s SmartVision service platform. This provides complete control of subscription and content management as well as an overview of the technical equipment and service flow.

“We wanted to get our mobile television service on air quickly, and turned to Grass Valley as we knew they had the capability of delivering a complete, highly functional system when we needed it,” said Mr. Dritan HOXHA, President of DigitALB. “In particular, Grass Valley’s statistical encoding and time slicing technology allows us to offer a strong channel line-up from the beginning.

“The response to our launch has been very strong, and our target is to reach 100.000 subscribers by the end of 2007”, he added. “SmartVision has allowed us to ramp up our customer and service support quickly and cost effectively.”