Astro (television)(Redirected from Astro (satellite TV))
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MEASAT Broadcast Network Systems Sdn Bhd (or better known as Astro) is a Malaysian direct broadcast satellite (DBS) Pay TV service. It transmits digital satellite television and radio to households in Malaysia and Brunei and has operations at the All Asia Broadcast Centre located in Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur and MEASAT in Cyberjaya. Astro was granted an exclusive license as a sole Pay TV provider by the Malaysia federal government until 2022. Until then, it will be the only DBS provider in Malaysia. It competes with HyppTV, a IPTV service by TM. As of September 2014, Astro has provided services to over four million subscribers.
|Industry||Broadcasting, Mass Media|
|Founded||1 June 1996|
|Headquarters||AABC, Lebuhraya Puchong-Sg. Besi, Bukit Jalil, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia|
|Rohana Rozhan, CEO|
|Products||Direct broadcast satellite
|Revenue||RM 5.613 million (Q1 2017).|
|RM 777.71 million (2014)|
|RM 447.95 million (2014)|
|Parent||Astro All Asia Networks plc|
Astro is a wholly owned subsidiary of Astro All Asia Networks plc. and operated by MEASAT Broadcast Network Systems Sdn. Bhd. This company was de-listed from the Main Market of Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad on 14 June 2010, following a successful take-over offer by Astro Holdings Sdn Bhd, a company owned by Tegas Sdn Bhd and its affiliates and Khazanah Nasional Berhad.
Astro launched the first High Definition (HD) broadcast in Malaysia in December 2009 under the brand Astro B.yond. Following the launch of HD, Astro B.yond PVR (Personal Video Recorder) was introduced in June 2010 and Astro B.yond IPTV in April 2011 followed by Over-The-Top service, Astro on the Go in 2012.
On 18 February 2012, Astro introduced NJOI as an entry-level DTH satellite TV service. It is the first non-subscription-based satellite TV. As of February 2015, NJOI has 24 SDTV channels, 5 HDTV channels and all radio channels.
Tan Sri Ananda Krishnan, was issued a license in 1995 to operate MEASAT. MEASAT in turn launched ASTRO, Malaysia’s digital direct broadcast satellite service. He is estimated to have a net worth of over US$7.4 billion. Malaysia’s privately owned FM stations exhibit similar ownership patterns as television, and is largely controlled by Ananda Krishnan. Five of the seven stations are owned by Airtime Management and Programming Sdn. Bhd. (AMP). AMP additionally operates four “FM” services that are available only via digital direct broadcast satellite (ASTRO). AMP is also a division of Krishnan’s ASTRO. Not forgetting that Ananda Krishnan also has control over the telecommunication company Binariang Bhd. that owns two satellites Measat-1, Measat-2 and now Maxis Communications Berhad(S) (Shriver, 2003). After the launch of the MEASAT-1 satellite as part of Malaysia’s commercialisation of space, Astro commenced broadcasting in 1996 with an initial bouquet of twenty-two television and eight radio channels, which were its own channels (Astro All Asia Networks, 2011).
Satellite and transpondersEdit
Astro utilises 11 high powered Ku-band transponders on MEASAT-3 and 6 high powered Ku-band transponders on MEASAT-3A to transmit its signal across Malaysia and Brunei. MEASAT-3 and MEASAT-3A are owned by MEASAT Satellite Systems Sdn Bhd, a subsidiary of MEASAT Global. Astro and MEASAT Global are related parties. MEASAT-3 was launched into orbit in Dec 2006 at 91.5 degrees east, entered commercial service on 1 February 2007 and has a design lifetime of 15 years. MEASAT-3A, which also has a design lifetime of 15 years, entered into commercial service in Jul 2009 and is co-located at the same orbital slot as MEASAT-3. Both satellites are controlled from the Measat Teleport and Broadcast Centre located in Cyberjaya, in the same facility as the Cyberjaya Broadcast Centre. A backup satellite control facility is located at the All Asia Broadcast Centre. MEASAT-3B was launched into orbit in September 2014 and entered commercial service in Dec 2014, have 18 transponders which Astro expects to be able to expand its broadcasting capacity to 180 SD and 102 HD channels.
In January 1996, Astro was officially formerly known as "Philips ASTRO" it was officially launched by the digital video broadcasting – satellite form of the programme for general used 4-satellite channel used translated into English on Saluran 20 (now Astro SuperSport), Malay on Saluran 1 (now Astro Ria), Cantonese on Saluran 60 (now Astro Wah Lai Toi) and Tamil on Saluran 2 (now Astro Vaanavil) with an initial bouquet of 22-digital television and 3-digital radio was backed by Philips Electronics as Holland digital technology by the digital electronics.
On 1 January 2003, Astro Showcase was launched as a free-to-view channel showcasing Southeast Asian movies. The following year, Season Pass was launched, showing games and other sporting events. These two have now become pay-per-view channels under the Astro Box Office name and new logo was launched, the uppercase 'Philips ASTRO' was changed to the lowercase 'astro'.
On 3 March 2003, Astro launches exclusive first-run blockbuster movies from Hong Kong, Japan, Taiwan and 24/7 channel, Celestial Movies.
On 1 November 2006, Astro News was co-produced with the national news agency Bernama, with the former taking 12-minutes of the programme for general. The news is also translated into Chinese on Astro Asian Entertainment Channel, Malay on Astro Ria and Tamil on Astro Vaanavil.
On 1 April 2007, Astro added another 9-satellite television channels into its line-up. The nine channels that were announced were Jia Yu Channel, Discovery Science, Discovery Real Time, Discovery Home & Health, E! Entertainment, Astro Vellithirai, Sun Music, Eurosport and The Golf Channel.
The 3-satellite television channels were already added into Astro's line-up on 24 April 2007.
The 6-satellite television channels became available from 1 May 2007 onward.
On 1 July 2007 onward, Astro On Demand Preview was launched and it is entirely devoted to telling the Astro subscribers about this new channel. A total of 31 satellite television channels have been allocated for this new service.
On 13 October 2007, Astro added 7 satellite television channels into its repertoire, including the Asian Food Channel, Astro Hua Hee Dai, Astro Oasis, Astro Xiao Tai Yang, Chutti TV, KBS World and Makkal TV. This increased the number of 803 satellite television channels on Astro.
On 1 December 2007, Australia Network starts transmission on the Astro platform.
On 1 January 2008, Bernama TV, Bernama's 24-hour news channel starts transmission on the Astro platform.
On 1 May 2009, Astro launched the Mustika Pack is a new pay television package comprising three new channels named Astro Citra, Astro Warna, and B4U. Astro Warna offers comedy; while Astro Citra is the Malay version of the HBO Asia channel providing Southeast Asian blockbuster movies, Malay premieres and Malay epic series; and B4U the latest box-office Bollywood movies and music with Malay subtitles. Astro Bella however replaced B4U in early 2012.
Astro then launched another sports channel, Astro SuperSport 2 on 1 November 2009.
On 23 November 2009, Astro starts transmission of the first high-definition channels in Malaysia, Astro SuperSport HD, HBO HD, National Geographic Channel HD and HISTORY HD, followed by ESPN HD on 11 January 2010.
Granada TV was added the Astro platform on 1 December 2009 featuring many of the United Kingdom's best shows. Granada TV was subsequently renamed to ITV Granada on 1 November 2010.
On 25 March 2010, Astro Arena, Malaysia's first local sports channel was launched. Astro Arena, a 24-hour local sports channel will be delivered predominantly in Malay and available to all Astro customers under its Family Pack.
On 1 April 2010, Astro starts transmission of TVB Classic Channel is a drama channel in Cantonese, featuring memorable and highly rated dramas from the 1970s and 1980s – all from TVB's much-coveted vault of library titles, covering varied genres such as romance, costume, action and comedy.
On 1 May 2010, Astro starts transmission of ESPNews, a sports news channel from ESPN STAR Sports showcasing the latest international and local sports news. This channel is a rolling news service featuring highlights, interviews, results and lead-up stories.
In conjunction with the launch of Astro B.yond PVR, Astro launches 3-new high-definition channels such: AXN HD, Astro Zhi Zun HD – a Chinese general entertainment high-definition channel – and FX HD was join Astro B.yond's HD line up. In addition, FOX was replaced Channel V from its channel listings. All these new channels started transmission on 16 June 2010.
On 1 July 2010, Astro starts transmission of Astro SuperSport 3 (ASSP 3). ASSP 3 will broadcast 'LIVE' coverage of BPL (Barclays Premier League) games as well as also feature highlights, previews and magazine programs around the BPL. ASSP 3 will also broadcast other football plus a variety of other sporting genres.
On 11 August 2010, Astro starts transmission of National Geographic Wild (Nat Geo Wild). Nat Geo Wild, is in Malaysian, English and Mandarin language tracks for all programs.
On 17 August 2010, Astro starts transmission of AXN Beyond HD as well.
On 1 October 2010, Astro launches three additional HD channels, ONE HD provides Asian general entertainment with a focus on Korean content. while STAR Movies HD brings movies in HD and Astro Lifestyle HD channel which will air programmes from both Food Network Asia HD (9:00 am to 9:00 pm) and Life Inspired (Li) (9:00 pm to 9:00 am), but on 1 October 2012, the 2 programming will cut at the Channel HD to ch. 727 and ch. 728.
On 9 December 2010, Astro Tutor TV UPSR returned as a permanent channel on Astro with a programme line-up include, Mathematics, Science, English and Bahasa Malaysia with full interactive 'red-button' features to make revision even more engaging and fun.
On 14 January 2011, Astro launches Astro First, a first of its kind movie-on-demand service. Astro customers will be able to watch films within two weeks after the cinema release.
On 1 May 2011, Astro offers Astro Tutor TV channels for PMR and SPM version, with newest line-up programmes include, Mathematics, Science, English, History, Malay, and Additional Mathematics (only for SPM) with full interactive 'red-button' features to make revision even more engaging and fun.
On 1 July 2011, Astro launches another new package called Indo Pek, which comprising two new Astro branded channels named Bintang and Pelangi. Bintang provides Indonesian lifestyle entertainment such as music videos, gossips, and more. Pelangi shows Indonesian movies from the 1970s and later.
On 15 September 2012, Astro launched Disney's extreme channel in SD and HD, Disney XD on channel 617 and 637 (HD). These channels will go to the Astro Family Pack.
On 13 January 2013, Astro launched the second Chinese HD channel named Astro Quan Jia HD for all Astro B.yond customers. The first Chinese HD channel Astro Zhi Zun HD will be revamped to a Cantonese HD channel, which is a sister channel of Astro Wah Lai Toi.
On 3 June 2013, Astro launched the third Chinese HD channel named Astro On Demand HD for Astro B.yond customers who subscribe to the Astro On Demand Dragon Pack or Super Pack 3 with no extra cost. Same Day, SD Version of Astro On Demand will be renumbering to CH 351-354 at 8.30 PM and CH 361-364 at 9.30 PM.
On 24 June 2013, Astro launched the second Malay HD channel named Astro Maya HD for all Astro B.yond customers as the success of the first Malay HD channel Astro Mustika HD. Astro Mustika HD will continue broadcasts newest Malay shows in HD. Same Day, Astro launched the fourth Chinese HD channel named Astro Hua Hee Dai HD for Astro B.yond customers who subscribe to the New Emperor Pack or Gold Pack or Wah Pack or Super Pack 3 with no extra cost.
On 18 October 2013, Astro launched the first Tamil HD channel named Astro Vinmeen HD on channel 231 for Astro B.yond customers who subscribe to the Maharaja Pack or Namma Pack or Super Pack 2 with no extra cost.
On 11 July 2014, Astro incorporates Astro On Demand into the upgraded version of Dynasty Package. This channel will be made available to all existing Dynasty Package subscribers on Astro B.yond platform.
On 1 November 2014, Astro's first home shopping channel, Astro Go Shop launched.
On 16 November 2014, Astro second Chinese HD channel Astro Quan Jia HD which is showing local programmes and Singapore drama along with Astro AEC will be moved to new Chinese HD channel, Astro AEC HD on channel 306 and the Chinese Drama HD channel, Astro Shuang Xing HD on channel 307, which is showing all drama in SD version of Astro Shuang Xing, along with 8 new channels such as FOX Action Movies HD, FOX HD, FOX Family Movies HD, FYI HD, HITS HD, Celestial Classic Movies, ZooMoo and DIVA HD. All of 8 new HD channels and ZooMoo are available for preview to all Astro customers from 16 November 2014 until 28 February 2015. At the same time, Astro chose to discontinued FOX in SD version on channel 710 upgraded to FOX HD on channel 724.
On 18 November 2014, Astro Shuang Xing and Astro Shuang Xing HD has finally showing hotest HKTV drama for the first time with Chinese & Bahasa Malaysia subtitles until English subtitles for the second HKTV drama starting the end of 2015.
On end-year 2014, Astro launches first Korean channel in SD version only for preview from end of 2014 to 16 February 2015, Channel M until the launch of HD version.
On 1 February 2015, Astro launching the first free Chinese HD channel named Astro Xi Yue HD for all NJOI customers. However, this channel is also available for all Astro B.yond customers when 88% of the customers who have watching HD channels. NJOI has now have 25 SDTV channels, 20 Radio channels and 1 HDTV channels. However, Astro has already have 49 HDTV channels and the HD Service fee is not changed.
On 16 February 2015, Astro launches all new Korean Pack for K-pop fans. This pack includes Oh!K HD and Channel M HD. These channels are now available on complimentary channels from 16 until 28 February 2015. At the same time, Channel M in SD will be end of the preview at 16 February 2015 and Golf Channel HD launches too.
On 26 February 2015, Golf Channel HD was no longer available on Sports Pack and becoming an ala carte channel. At the same time, Golf Channel in SD ceases transmission.
On 1 May 2015, Astro's New Value Pack Called "Stars Pack" for Astro Customers comes with HD Service and Astro On The Go.
On 29 May 2015, Astro first Malay HD channel Astro Mustika HD and second Malay HD channel Astro Maya HD which is showing some local Malay programmes along with Astro Ria will be moved to new Malay HD channel, Astro Ria HD on channel 123. At the same time, Astro Maya HD is now available for all NJOI customers because of 1 million customers celebration.
On 2 June 2015, New Travel channel Go Asean CH 737 add in Astro and NJOI too.
On 1 July 2015, Astro Vinmeen HD on channel 231 is now available to all Singtel TV customers for Singaporeans on channel 626. This channel is available to Kondattam Starter, Trio, Variety and Value Pack.
On 15 July 2015, Astro adds new 3 sports channels. Their name is WWE Network (this channel is broadcasts WWE shows and events and which also in HD) on channel 820 and 840 (HD) and Setanta Sports HD (this channel is broadcasts international events) on channel 839. At the same time, this new channels will go to Premium list and SD version of WWE Network will go to NJOI Prepaid.
On 19 October 2015, Astro first home shopping channel, Astro Go Shop has now available in Mandarin version in HD on channel 318, this channel will be available for all Astro and NJOI customers only.
On 1 November 2015, Astro first home shopping channel, Astro Go Shop in Malay version has now upgraded to HD version on channel 118.
On 1 May 2016, Astro launches all new Jade Pack for TVB fans. This pack includes TVB Jade HD, TVB Classic, TVB Classic Movies, TVB Xing He, TVB Entertainment News, TVBS-Asia and Asian Action Channel. TVB Jade HD, TVB Classic Movies and Asian Action Channel are available for preview to all Astro customers from 1 May 2016 until 15 May 2016.
On 7 June 2016, Astro launches a special channel for gamers and fans of eSports was be thrilled to know eGG Network channel 808 also known as Every Good Game, Southeast Asia’s first 24/7 eSports and gaming entertainment.
On 1 October 2016 Zee Variasi was no longer available on Astro from 30 September 2016 but was replaced by new Hindu HD channel called TARA HD on 19 October 2016. 
On 31 October 2016, Astro add new channel called Boo Channel.
On 1 December 2016, Lifetime (CH 709) upgraded to High Definition (HD) for a better viewing experience. Variety Pack customers on HD enabled setup-boxes (B.yond box) will still be able to enjoy a preview of the channel until 31 January 2017
On 16 January 2017, Astro removed ITV Choice channel 12.15 am due to low viewership.
On 1 April 2017, Astro On The Go has now was be known as Astro GO. To celebrate the occasion, all Astro subscribers (excluding Astro NJOI) will be able to access everything that Astro Go offers, including all 71 live channels, over 23,000 on-demand content from Hollywood, Korea, Japan, China, Hong Kong and India, and also live sports from 1 April to 31 May 2017 for free, excluding Pay Per View (PPV) and premium ala-carte sports content.
On 11 May 2017, Astro first Malay HD channel Astro Mustika HD which is showing some Comedy programmes along with Astro Warna will be moved to new Malay HD channel, Astro Warna HD on channel 124. This channel is available for preview to all Astro customers from 11 May 2017 until 17 May 2017. At the same time, Astro and Government of Malaysia has launch a new streaming service called NJOI Now, this streaming service is allowing all Malaysians to access over 2,000 titles of movies, drama box sets which may be downloaded and view offline, varieties of entertainment programmes, news, live sports events, as well as selected Astro live TV channels.
On 1 August 2017, Astro launching the first Korean movies HD channel named tvN Movies HD for Astro B.yond customers who subscribe to the Movies Pack or Stars Pack or all Super Pack or all Super Pack Plus with no extra cost.
On 7 October 2017, Life Inspired was ceased transmission too due to migrating further losses by the company.
ASTRO launched Malaysia's first high-definition television service branded Astro B.yond on 11 December 2009. The roll out of these services is estimated to cost some RM200 million, including marketing and operating costs of approximately RM150 million, over the next financial year, ahead of revenue and earnings from these services.
Astro B.yond also introduced a Digital Video Recording (DVR) service, available through the Astro B.yond Personal Video Recorder (PVR) and an external hard disk drive connected to the Astro B.yond decoder. The Astro B.yond PVR comes with an inbuilt 500GB hard disk and allows customers to record up to two live programmes at one time, rewind and pause live TV. Recording services is also available through Astro B.yond via a compatible external hard disk drive and activation of the recording service by Astro.
In April 2011, Astro B.yond introduced its IPTV services through Astro B.yond IPTV a collaboration with TIME dotCom Berhad (TIME) to deliver IPTV. Since December 2010, this provides a wide choice of Astro channels in HD (High-Definition) with personal video recording and video-on-demand services delivered via TIME's 100% fibre broadband. Astro B.yond IPTV will be progressively available in Klang Valley and Penang. At present, Astro B.yond IPTV is available at 60 high-rise condominiums within Mont Kiara, KLCC, Bangsar and Penang.
Astro IPTV is an Internet Protocol Television service by Astro. Launched on 20 April 2011 as Astro B.yond IPTV, its subscribers were entitled to high definition Astro channels, personal video recording, video-on-demand, high-speed internet, and voice services. Astro’s initial target audiences were residences of high-rise buildings that having difficulty accessing HD and PVR services due to several technical limitations of the centralised dishes installed at building's rooftop. By including HD and PVR services with its IPTV, Astro was able to offer HD services to selected high-rise residences and buildings. This was made possible by partnering with Time dotCom Bhd and later on Maxis Berhad (April 2013). Astro B.yond IPTV was rebranded to Astro IPTV in February 2014.
Astro NJOI is a Malaysian first free-to-view satellite TV service by Astro. Launched by Government of Malaysia and Astro on 18 February 2012, with 18 TV channels and 19 radio stations. Existing Astro customers are able to have this service through separate account. It comes with a set-top box, Out-Door Unit (ODU) satellite dish, smart-card and remote control unit.
Initially, it was available at a one-time payment of RM 308 at all Astro authorised retailers, with a standard installation fee of RM 100 from an Astro authorised installer as stated on the website. In mid 2013, the one-time payment was reduced to RM 280, and installation remains at RM 100.
As of February 2017, the installation fee is RM285 for refurbished set-top-box or RM350 for brand new set-top-box, together with standard installation fee of RM100.
Later, NJOI introduces prepaid service where customers are able to enjoy more paid channels which is available on its regular Astro platform by using prepaid top-up card which it can be easily purchased at nearby convenience stores. The customer can choose whichever channels they wish to watch by paying the amount for a selected number of days.
Currently, NJOI offers 28 TV channels including 4 HD channels as well as 20 radio channels.
Channels currently on AstroEdit
List of TV channelsEdit
- Adithya TV
- A-List (HD)
- Al-Jazeera English
- Animal Planet
- ART Variety
- Animax Asia
- Aniplus (Astro GO Only)
- Asian Food Channel
- Astro AEC (SD & HD)
- Astro Arena (SD & HD)
- Astro Awani
- Astro Bella
- Astro Best
- Astro Box Office Movies Tayangan Hebat
- Astro Box Office Movies Thangathirai
- Astro Box Office BollyOne HD
- Astro Ceria
- Astro Citra
- Astro Cricket (HD)
- Astro First
- Astro Go Shop Malay (SD & HD)
- Astro Go Shop Mandarin (HD)
- Astro Hua Hee Dai (SD & HD)
- Astro Mustika HD
- Astro Maya HD
- Astro Oasis
- Astro AOD
- Astro AOD HD
- Astro Quan Jia HD
- Astro PPV Movies HD
- Astro Prima
- Astro Ria (SD & HD)
- Astro SuperSport (SD & HD)
- Astro SuperSport 2 (SD & HD)
- Astro SuperSport 3 (SD & HD)
- Astro SuperSport 4 (SD & HD)
- Astro Shuang Xing (SD & HD)
- Astro Tutor TV PT3
- Astro Tutor TV SPM
- Astro Tutor TV UPSR
- Astro TVIQ
- Astro Vaanavil
- Astro Vellithirai
- Astro Vinmeen HD
- Astro Wah Lai Toi (SD & HD)
- Astro Warna (SD & HD)
- Astro Xi Yue HD
- Astro Xiao Tai Yang
- Asian Action Channel
- Australia Plus
- AXN Asia (SD & HD)
- BBC World News
- beIN Sports (HD)
- Bernama News Channel (BNC)
- Bloomberg TV
- Boo (HD)
- Cartoon Network Asia
- Celestial Classic Movies
- Celestial Movies (SD & HD)
- Chutti TV
- Cinemax Asia
- Comedy Central (Astro GO Only)
- CNBC Asia
- CNN International
- Crime & Investigation Network
- CTI Asia
- Discovery Channel
- Discovery Asia
- Discovery Science
- Disney Channel
- Disner Junior
- Disney XD (SD & HD)
- Diva (SD & HD)
- DW English (Astro GO Only)
- eGG (HD)
- Food Network Asia (HD)
- FOX (HD)
- FOX Action Movies (HD)
- FOX Family Movies (HD)
- Fox Life (SD & HD)
- FOX Movies (SD & HD)
- FOX Sports (SD & HD)
- FOX Sports 2 (SD & HD)
- FOX Sports 3 (SD & HD)
- FX (HD)
- Golf Channel (HD)
- HBO (SD & HD)
- HGTV Asia (HD)
- History (SD & HD)
- HITS (HD)
- iNJOI (NJOI Only)
- iView (NJOI Only)
- Jaya TV
- Kalaignar TV
- KBS World (SD & HD)
- KIX (HD)
- K Plus (Astro GO Only)
- Lifetime (HD)
- Makkal TV
- MTV Asia
- Nat Geo People (HD)
- Nat Geo Wild
- National Geographic (SD & HD)
- NHK World
- Oh!K (HD)
- Sony ONE (HD)
- Phoenix Chinese Channel
- Phoenix InfoNews Channel
- Raj TV
- Setanta Sports (HD)
- Sky News (HD)
- STAR Chinese Channel
- STAR Vijay
- Sun Music
- Sun TV
- Tara HD
- TV AlHijrah
- TVB Classic
- TVB Classic Movies
- TVB Entertainment News
- TVB Jade (HD)
- TVB Xing He
- tvN (HD)
- tvN Movies (HD)
- Warner TV (HD)
- WWE Network (SD & HD)
List of radio stationsEdit
- All radio stations is available for all Astro and NJOI Customers
|870||Sabah V FM|
Current channels in other countriesEdit
- eGG (HD)
- eGG (HD)
- eGG (HD) (6.00 AM- 12.00 Midnight)
- eGG (HD)
Service and technical informationEdit
The direct-to-home (DTH), is broadcast as high-power Ku-band transmissions using the transponders of the MEASAT satellite system. Reception of the service signals uses a fixed 65-cm diameter dish antenna. Astro service is currently transmitting from 3 satellites, which are Measat 3, Measat 3a and Measat 3b.
Ku-band signals can be affected by rain attenuation (rain fade), making it susceptible to frequent outages in heavy rainfall areas such as Malaysia, the operators of Astro have employed a tailor-made system to boost power of the satellite delivery system to overcome this problem. The service availability of 99.7%, however, is still a topic of much debate by subscribers.
Initially, the HDMI output on every B.yond boxes is disabled (including Njoi) if the subscriber did not subscribe to HD service. However, later 2014 onwards, HDMI output is now enabled to every customers using B.yond boxes via newly designed firmware with multilingual user-interface.
Since its launch, Astro transmits programming with encryption to mitigate signal piracy. The receiver (also known as an IRD, or "integrated receiver-decoder") uses ISO/IEC 7816 smart cards which tell the receiver how to decrypt the programming for viewing.
- The first generation of smart cards were used until 2004. The encryption uses the SECA Mediaguard.
- The second generation of smart cards were introduced in 2004 and used until 2008. The encryption uses the improved version of Mediaguard.
- The third generation of smart cards were introduced in 2008. This is the current "standard issue" smart card. It uses the NDS VideoGuard encryption system.
Currently, Astro uses the enhanced VideoGuard encryption system for B.yond boxes as it features smart card pairing technology, where the smart card are only allowed for the particular set-top-box issued by Astro, and it is no longer interchangeable like the legacy Astro set-top-boxes.
Broadband and internet-based servicesEdit
At the end of 1999, Astro's operator MEASAT Broadcast Network Systems announced a proposal to provide high-speed satellite-delivered Internet access services. The service, called @stronet-JARING, was to be a one-way terrestrial return system, whereby Malaysian ISP Jaring would provide the outbound data service through dial-up (and later broadband) access. Downloads would be received via the MEASAT satellite system, which promised a maximum download speed of 6.5Mbit/s. A PC-based trial was performed in early 2000 with a maximum download speed of 400kbit/s. Other proposed services included Multicast File Transfer and Multicast Streaming Delivery. The service, however, has never been made available publicly.
In May 2005, Astro launched Astro.tv, a broadband TV portal. Initially, it had two video channels: Akademi Fantasia Xtra and GOALTV. The service required a separate subscription fee charged to the subscribers mobile phone bill. It was rebranded as Astro Broadband.
In 2010, Astro introduced the Astro B.yond Player Online offering access to selected programmes via LIVE video streaming on astro.com.my to its customers. There is also Video-On-Demand and selected programme replays available online. The Astro B.yond Player comprises videos from Astro's locally produced content, LIVE football matches and a special programmes HD broadcast. Astro B.yond Player Online requires a Microsoft Silverlight plug-in. However, this service was eventually being replaced, and currently known as Astro on the Go.
Since December 2010, Astro's strategic collaboration with TIME dotCom Berhad (TIME) has enabled Astro to deliver IPTV with multiplay of Astro channels in HD (High-Definition) with Personal Video Recording (PVR) and VOD (Video-on-Demand) services delivered via TIME's 100% fibre broadband offering the fastest Internet speed in the country with voice to Malaysian homes.
As of February 2015, Astro has provided services to more than 4 million subscribers, which represents more than 50% of Malaysia's television households.
As of Q4 2016, Astro has 3.4 million pay TV subscribers and 1.6 million NJOI subscribers, making a total of 5 million customers, which represents 71% household penetration.
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