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Newtec, ASBU, TDA sign multimillion-dollar deal for interactive satellite terminals

Deployment in 48 regions in Algeria is part of major ASBU-MENOS virtual network creation

Newtec and Télédiffusion d’Algérie (TDA) have signed a multimillion-dollar contract to deploy several of Newtec’s interactive satellite terminals running on the Arab States Broadcasting Union (ASBU) Multimedia Exchange Network over Satellite (MENOS).

The ASBU-MENOS network is operated by ASBU on the satellite Arabsat 5A (30.5 degrees East). By deploying the Newtec technology, hosted on the ASBU platform, TDA will now have access to their own IP-based and fully automated secure virtual network (VN) for contribution and exchange of radio and TV content at low and high bit rates. Using a VN provides the same services and benefits as owning a dedicated physical network, but is provided as hosted services by ASBU without TDA having to operate the complete system.

TDA will integrate Newtec’s Ku-band Radio Satellite Interactive Terminals (SIT), TV Satellite Interactive Terminals, fixed and portable Fast News Gathering (FNG) SITs and IP data SITs. Those SITs will be deployed over 48 regions across Algeria with two separate networks for radio and TV contribution, connecting five major cities and villages. This allows users to collect and access content at each site.

“The beauty of MENOS is the real-time transmission it provides to access content quickly and efficiently for transmission of feeds from anywhere in Algeria to the radio and TV stations,” says Abdelmalek Houyou, General Manager of TDA. “The ability to receive content at any time will greatly improve our workflow and is fully compliant with current TDA requirements.”

The MENOS terminals will be deployed nationally over the next twelve months and will use the ASBU-MENOS hub, located and operated in Algiers. Newtec will provide on-site planning and installation service as well as training, both in Algiers and Newtec’s headquarters in Belgium, to certify TDA’s engineers as part of the handover phase.

Serge Van Herck, CEO of Newtec, adds: “This multiservice broadcast network combines innovative technologies into one powerful, unique system for exchanging media content which can also easily allow more terminals to be added. Companies like TDA can provide better connectivity for broadcasters in Africa.”

Newtec installed the first MENOS network at ASBU’s facility in Algiers in 2008. The platform supports multiple simultaneous managed exchange services for use by broadcasting organisations throughout the Middle East and African countries.

Slaheddine Maaoui, ASBU’s Director General, says: “We are always keen to help improve broadcasting services and enable access to numerous services to contribute content from anywhere across Arab countries in Africa and the Middle East. We know this project is very important and the MENOS capability will continue to encourage a robust media industry to thrive through the new connectivity it will enable.”