Broadcast TV product developer SysMedia has reported a ‘very strong’ teletext market throughout 2010. The digital-ready version of its PLASMA teletext content production and management system was among the products to experience high demand.
Sales across southern Europe were particularly buoyant in 2010, with Spain and Cyprus standing out. Regional broadcasters in both countries took the chance to launch or expand teletext services on both analogue and digital platforms, while also future-proofing themselves with a simple upgrade path for mobile, web and interactive TV middlewares.
In Spain, Radio y Televisión de Andalucía (RTVA) installed a digital-ready PLASMA teletext system for its Canal Sur and Canal Sur 2 channels. Euskal Telebista (ETB, Basque Television) upgraded to a similar system for its teletext services on ETB1, 2 and ETB-S. Giralda TV (Seville) launched its new local teletext service – a first for the city – with news, information and sport for the local area. All of these deals were overseen by SysMedia’s Spanish partner Rohde & Schwarz España, who provided both sales and local technical support.
SysMedia also reports a number of significant projects in Cyprus. Sigma TV, for example, has found that the PLASMA system has made it easier to update the 700-page sports betting and results teletext service, as well as positioning the station for a smooth transition to digital.
Dinos Papas, technical manager with Sigma TV, said: “We needed to move to a much more advanced system in order to offer our customers better services, with the ability to automate page creation and updating, but most importantly to install a future-proof system that will allow us to migrate easily to digital teletext when the time comes.”
Antenna TV, another Cypriot broadcaster, is also preparing for the digital transition with PLASMA, making extensive use of the automated content updating capabilities to improve operational efficiency.
Daimon Hall, director of sales at SysMedia, reflected: “It may come as a surprise to some – particularly those in the UK – that commitment to teletext-based services remains strong throughout Europe. In turn, broadcasters in Europe may wonder why the UK opted not to transition such a popular platform to digital TV.
“ARD in Germany has recently reported increased teletext popularity, with user numbers up from 15.76 million to 16.21 million in 2010. In Ireland, RTÉ’s Aertel service is available on the web and mobile as well as TV, while smartphone teletext apps in the Netherlands have been seized on by the younger generation. Teletext is well-liked by viewers for its speed and ease-of-use. So it’s certainly no surprise that both public service and commercial broadcasters alike see the benefits of our digital-ready and multiplatform teletext technology.”