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BBC World News launches in HD across Europe

MUMBAI: BBC Global News has signed a long-term agreement to broadcast its international news channel BBC World News free-to-air in High Definition (HD) on Astra at 19.2 degrees East.

The channel, a HD version of BBC World News in English, is being broadcast at 19.2 degrees East on a multiplex operated and uplinked by SES from its headquarters in Betzdorf, Luxembourg.

SES reports that over 47 million, some 52% of European satellite homes, are now watching television in HD, more than half of which are served by the satellites at the 19.2 degrees East orbital position. In 2014, SES broadcast over 1,800 HD channels globally, and more than 500 in Europe.

SES chief commercial officer Ferdinand Kayser said, “We are delighted that the BBC has chosen Astra 19.2E for the HD distribution of its premier international news channel. The momentum for HD has been rapidly increasing as more people appreciate the level of detail that HD delivers. High Definition means clearer, crisper pictures that are more vivid in colour – they can be as much as five times more detailed than standard definition.”

BBC Global News director of distribution Colin Lawrence said, “We know from our viewers that they value HD services. BBC World News originates in pure HD, so it’s fantastic to be able to bring this service to our European heartland. Following the investments we made in our content and presentation on BBC World News, last year we saw an audience increase in daily reach. HD is undoubtedly becoming the default viewing preference, and this new partnership enables delivery of our world class service to European audiences.”