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Harmonic powers Airtel Digital TV’s enhanced DTH HD offerings

Airtel Digital TV, the direct-to-home (DTH) arm of leading global telecommunications provider Bharti Airtel, has deployed a state-of-the-art compression headend solution from Harmonic to substantially improve the HD …


Airtel Digital TV, the direct-to-home (DTH) arm of leading global telecommunications provider Bharti Airtel, has deployed a state-of-the-art compression headend solution from Harmonic to substantially improve the HD viewing experience for its customers. The high-density, scalable and HEVC-upgradeable video infrastructure solutions from Harmonic will help Airtel Digital TV increase bandwidth efficiencies and significantly improve video quality while lowering operating expenses. The deployment enables Airtel Digital TV to expand its DTH HD portfolio to over 50 premium channels, making it one of the largest HD bouquets in India today.

“Harmonic’s compression solution allows Airtel Digital TV to deliver superior video quality at low bit rates while adapting to next-generation video compression standards such as HEVC,” said Dan Taylor, general manager-India at Harmonic. “Our best-in-class video infrastructure solutions help customers like Airtel Digital TV reduce OPEX and drive new business growth by simplifying the launch of additional HD channels.”

Residing at the heart of the headend solution is Harmonic’s market-leading Electra X2 advanced media processor, which enables high-quality, low-bandwidth MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 encoding of SD and HD video content for live DTH services. Powered by the Harmonic PURE Compression Engine, the Electra X2 media processors support a wide range of video formats and codecs for satellite delivery, including HEVC, simplifying operations and future upgrades for Bharti Airtel.

At Airtel Digital TV, the Electra X2 media processors will be integrated with Harmonic’s ProStream 9100 stream processor and ProView 7100 integrated receiver-decoder (IRD), and controlled by Harmonic’s NMX video network management solution. As part of a unified headend, these solutions will enable Airtel Digital TV to address a vast array of content reception applications — from decoding, descrambling and multiplexing of multiple transport streams to MPEG-4 to MPEG-2 transcoding and statistical multiplexing, further increasing bandwidth efficiency and lowering the total cost of ownership.

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