MUMBAI: Sun Direct, the DTH service from Sun Network, is likely to add 20 new high definition (HD) and 100 new standard definition (SD) channels and has been allocated 144 MHz of spectrum on the recently launched Measat-3B satellite.


A social media user by the name of ‘Raja Chennai‘ shared a screenshot of the application made by the company informing the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) about the allocation of the new satellite capacity, according to an article on Ultra News.


Once these channels find a home on the new Measat satellite, Sun Direct will be able to add an extra 20 HD channels to take its total HD channel count to 80 while increasing total SD channel list to 320.


The company was forced to halt its HD channel expansion on GSAT 15 two months ago due to the termination of its channel-sharing deal with Reliance Digital TV and divert some of the HD capacity to handle the fallout.


[align=center][/align]


In the application, the company is shown informing the DoT that four new transponders of 36 MHz each have been allocated to it by the Department of Space for use on its DTH service.


Sun Direct has been facing a severe spectrum crunch due to a fire on an ISRO satellite that knocked out most of its satellite capacity in 2010. The fire forced the company to move satellite to Malaysian-owned Measat 3A, and manually realign the dish antennae of millions of its customers.


Some relief was in sight when Measat launched a second satellite at the same location in 2014, boosting capacity.


Sun Direct was widely expected to book extra capacity on the new satellite, particularly after it lost a sharing deal two months ago with Reliance Digital TV. Reliance Digital TV changed hands when the Anil Ambani Group sold it to another group as part of a fire sale.


The DTH service is expected to start adding new channels in a matter of days.


The new capacity is expected to lead to the addition of around 100 new SD channels while another 50 channels are expected to be moved to it from GSAT 15—the HD satellite for Sun Direct.


Source: