Internet TV Verses Satellite TV – Pros and Cons

For the past several decades Satellite and cable TV have dominated TV distribution, and just 20 years ago the thought of cable and satellite being challenged was science fiction. However today things are changing and as of 2017 more people watch entertainment through Internet TV than Satellite and cable TV combined. However that does not mean Satellite and cable have faded away, it just means internet TV is going to continue to grow stronger.

If your are thinking of starting a TV channel then here is some pros and cons to the different platforms:

Satellite TV for those inside the USA is not even a feasible choice for starting a TV station UNLESS you are trying to reach an audience that exists on Galaxy 19 satellite (mainly ethnic backgrounds) and even that can be a little shady these days as the cost does not justify the audience. So where does starting a Satellite TV channel make sense? It makes sense in those countries that do not have low cost internet and the prices of bandwidth are still expensive for consumers. Some countries in Africa for example may be a great fit for satellite TV because they have expensive internet fees and on satellite they have an existing audience for FTA beams. This means that as soon as you are on that satellite platform you have millions of existing receiving dishes already pointing at that satellite. Obviously the more people watching that particular satellite the more it cost to have your own channel. In these scenarios satellite is still supreme as long as you can afford the monthly fees.

However there are several companies now that have internet TV in Africa that are doing a better job at their encoding so they can still target consumers who have less data available due to higher costs. On a mobile device you can get away with a nice picture even at a lower data rate of lets say 384 Kbps. This means that you can still make it work in countries that are more internet challenged due to higher cost. Of course in some countries Satellite is the number one choice to start your channel, but you can only do what your budget allows, and if you budget only allows for internet TV then you can still use some encoding techniques that allows for your slower internet consumers to still be able to view it.

So the pros of satellite are obvious if you know what your doing:

  • Instant audience
  • No internet needed to watch it.


Expensive to start and maintain

Not a feasible option in more developed countries.

Bound by geography ( you only have so big of a footprint that can receive your channel)

Now lets talk about the pros of Internet TV in which there is so many:

Download our Free Ebook on how to start your own Internet TV station to learn more now.

For the most part it is not geographically bound. Meaning that if you start a subscription channel for people that like skateboarding then anyone in the developed world can access that channel. Compared to cable and satellite that is a huge advantage because your audience can be anywhere and does not have to be within a geographical foot print or have a cable attached to their house. This means you can literally advertise your channel anywhere in the developed world that speaks the same language as your channel.

Other advantages is now there are more people watching entertainment online than cable or satellite. Although you do have to advertise your channel to make them aware of its existence. Other advantages is you can style your channel anyhow you want, you can have VOD (Video on Demand) menus, multiple channels, and much more. Really the sky is the limit because you do not need expensive decoder boxes that have limited capabilities.

Obviously the other advantages is that its more cost effective to start and much less money monthly to maintain.


Cost less to start

Cost less to maintain

Can give it the look and style you want

Not bound by geographical limits

Every company has their different goals and their targeted audience so there is not one “shoe that fits all” per say. However if I was trying to mimic the “look and feel” of a satellite channel internationally using internet then I would choose the Android TV platform. I am not speaking of the mobile phone version (although I would also have my channel on the phone as well) I am speaking of their TV box that connects to any TV. These boxes are extremely popular and you can even customize your box to have your name branded on it both on the box and when the box is started on the TV screen. This means you can customize the entire box to give the exact user experience you want….kind of just like your own satellite decoder box except its for Internet TV. What does this mean for your viewers? This means if you are packing just one channel or 1,000 channels you can self brand it so that they only get your channels on the box. Kind of like having a Directv, Dish, or Multichoice box where the viewers can only get what you want them to see.

So altogether which is better Internet TV or Satellite? Well of course the overall winner would be internet, but given your goals and budget satellite still may be viable option for you.

For more information on how to monetize your internet TV channels check out our video on https://tvstartup.com/internet-tv/ or contact us if you looking to start your own Satellite TV or Internet TV network.





Start a Satellite TV Channel – How much does it cost?

Every day I get inquiries on how to start a satellite TV channel. I have consulted for hundreds if not thousands of companies, religious organizations, and entertainment companies on the subject. Having set up satellite TV channels around the world I have learned the trends and styles as they have evolved over the last decade. Although the satellite-TV is still very popular it will soon be overtaken in the next decade or two by Internet TV.

I often get inquiries for me to send complete equipment list for a satellite television channel. However it is not that simple and we do not provide full equipment list unless they are one of our consulting clients. There are several different configurations when it comes to satellite-TV. However I will just discuss the basics to give you an idea of cost and equipment.

First and foremost your video server also known as a play out server is the cornerstone of your satellite television station. This video server houses or holds your videos and creates playlists also it allows for the display of graphics across the screen for example sports scores, stocks quotes, and other such graphics. Next you need a live feed to the satellite uplink. Usually this is done with high-speed fiber or a dedicated high-speed Internet connection. What takes place Is the video signal comes out of the play out server and is encoded or compressed then it is sent into an IP box which is then sent over the Internet to the uplink station. Of course there is much more to it than just this but these are the basics for starting a channel. When I referred to basics I’m  talking about only what it takes to get your videos or live feed on satellite and not any production costs associated with that.

So you’re probably wondering about costs and these can vary quite a bit. Video servers can cost anywhere from $8000 all the way up to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending on what you want them to do. Typically a set up can be done for an Internet TV channel for $1,899 and $299 a month using our turn-key system, but comparably, a satellite TV channel can cost around $50,000, sometimes less if your requirements are not as stringent. However your monthly satellite costs can be anywhere from $8000 a month all the way up to $30,000 a month depending on what satellite you’re broadcasting on.

There are several shortcuts to save you a tremendous amount of money compared to what I quoted above; you can buy our book which has a detailed section on satellite television how to start one. If you look on our navigation bar you’ll see a link to our e-book it is a very helpful tool on starting a cable or satellite TV channel.

Regardless of your strategies or goals for your new satellite TV channel it’s always important to have a professional that can guide you through the process. I have seen several companies that I have been brought on to consult with that had made so many mistakes and cost themselves so much money that they did not have to spend. Companies such as ours save you so much money in the long run trying to take shortcuts in this business is a bad idea.


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Make My Own TV Station – Start My Own TV Channel

If you or your company are thinking of making your own TV station then there are some preliminary steps you need to take to get started. You will need to begin by asking yourself some basic questions.

  1. What type of station will this be? Entertainment, NEWS, religious?
  2. What will be my distribution platform? Satellite, Cable, or Internet?
  3. Will you make your own video content? or will you purchase content? Maybe you will do some of both.
  4. Will this be a 24/7 channel?
  5. Will you need the ability to broadcast live? If you need the ability to broadcast live will this be from inside your studio or outside your studio? This is important because if you are a NEWS team and you want the ability to broadcast live then you would need to plan in advance for a way to deliver your live feed from the field. Then once the signal is delivered live to your studio it must still be put through a video server to add on screen graphics overlays and sent out live to your satellite or cable operator.

All of these above steps may seem elementary but you still need to take the time to write them down and discuss them with your team or board of directors. As the saying goes “the devil is in the details” and your planning stages should be comprehensive.

Next you need to decide on a studio location. Or decide where you will be setting up your equipment. There is no need to get an extravagant office down town. That is the beauty of TV is you only show what you want your viewers to see. Many of my clients have setup studios in their basement or in their own homes to save money and time. If you are just re-broadcasting prerecorded content then really you do not need a very large space at all. In fact you could do it from a closet.

Develop your work flow. Once you have the space you need then it is time to contemplate what type of equipment you will need. For example if you are starting a NEWS station then you need to take into consideration several elements. One your filming element. What type of cameras you need, how many cameras for multiple angles, the type of video server and graphics overlay you need (for stock quotes, scrolling headlines and so forth), virtual studio equipment and so on. Two you need to consider the sets you will be filming on. You need to decide how many sets what type of news desks, lighting and background. You will also need to decide the type of image you want your channel to portray and choose the right sets to do so. Three you need to configure a live feed from the field and a live feed from your studio to the satellite up link or cable operator.

As you can see putting together a TV station is a combination of several elements to many to be listed in just this short article. Another element you will need to face obtaining a carriage agreement with a satellite operator or cable operator. This in itself can be a task that can take up time and resources.

Our company offers an array of services to help you to make your own TV station. We offer services from consulting all the way up to full service turn key packages for your own TV station. You can also buy our ebook to learn more of how the process works. Feel free to contact us with any questions you may have regarding your new project. You can click here for our ebook on “How to make my own TV station” Or you can feel free to click here to contact us

For more information see How To Start A Satellite Tv Channel What-Equipment Is Needed


Start a TV Channel – Learn the Basics

Okay so now you and your team have decided that you want to start your own TV station. Maybe you are thinking “What do we do next”? How do we proceed? Well starting a TV channel is a general term. In this article I am just going to focus on the basics. However feel free to browse our site to learn more. We specialize in this field and have helped companies from around the world start their own channels. You may browse our site by clicking here.

So now that you decided to start your TV channel what are your goals. What is your targeted geographical area. I commonly ask this question; Where do you want to broadcast from? and Where do you want to broadcast too? Do you want the ability to broadcast live? Seems like simple questions but the answers help get the ball rolling. You need solid answers to this. If you are considering starting in London, or lets say Ghana you have a serious decisions to make. Many of our clients have been undecided on choosing between two locations to set up their channel. So if you want to start making your plans solid start making some solid decisions so that you can have the foundation for your channel.

Download our Free Ebook on how to start your own TV station to learn more now.

For this article I am going to discuss satellite TV. Although we help setup Internet TV, Terrestrial broadcast, and Cable Television Satellite TV seems to be the most popular choice as it reaches a large area for a much cheaper price. So I am sure you are thinking what are the next steps? You have decided on your location, you have decided where you want to broadcast from and broadcast too. You have decided you want to broadcast live. Next you need to decide if you are need the ability to produce your own video content or if you are going to purchase the rights. Most channels do a combination of both. If you are going to produce your own content this is an entirely separate subject that can be a lengthy discussion. However in short you need to know what type of content you want to produce so that you can effectively decide on the type of production studio you need. For example if you are only wanting to produce cartoons then it is obvious that you do not need a NEWS studio set or ANY set. Instead you would need a graphics and animation team. However if you are doing talk shows, sport shows, or NEWS you would need a production studio with sets, and maybe even a solid tricaster for virtual sets. Next you need to decide on the type of look and feel that you want your channel to have. If you really want a Professional American look and feel to your channel then you need to be careful to select the right equipment and the right people to run the equipment.

If you decided you want the ability to broadcast LIVE then you have several options. A satellite up link ( I believe is to expensive and outdated), point to point fiber, and smart cloud internet technology (which I plan to discuss in another article, as I feel this is the best method to deliver a Live feed). Assembling a TV channel is a methodical process of combining several factors. As you can see from this article the process starts by making solid decisions and then building upon those decisions to build your channel. I always suggest using a professional and you can feel free to contact us if you would like our team to set up your channel the way you envision it. We can save you a lot of time and money because we know what short cuts can be taken an which to avoid.Click here to contact us.





How To Start a Satellite TV Channel – What Equipment is Needed

With millions of people tuning in to watch TV through satellite it is easy to understand why many companies and individuals are trying to start their own Satellite TV channel. It is an exciting opportunity for start up channels because they have instant access to millions of potential viewers already tuned in to satellite. So what are the steps involved? Well there are many different aspects; from choosing the right satellite (check out our blog article on how to choose the right satellite), choosing a production studio, choosing the correct video servers, and choosing the equipment to deliver your live feed from your studio to the satellite up-link. However in this article we are going to focus on choosing a video server and the equipment to deliver your live feed.

Let’s first discuss your video server (AKA playout). A video server is what schedules your videos. In other words you may load your video server with 500 hours of prerecorded content to broadcast on satellite. You then arrange the content in the order you want them to play. This is what is knows as a playlist. This playlist could be scheduled months in advance and contains your commercial inserts. Things that need to be considered when building and choosing a video server are; Will I need the ability to switch to a live broadcast from my studio? Will I need the ability to layer graphics over a live or prerecorded broadcast (example: Stock quotes, sports scores, scrolling marques and more). Do I want my channel to look as professional as possible? All of these factors need to be determined in order to choose the correct video server. The more features you want the more powerful it needs to be. Consider the video server the “core” of your satellite TV channel.

Download our Free Ebook on how to start your own Satellite TV station to learn more now.

So what other equipment do you need to consider to start your satellite TV channel? Well for one you need to decide how are you going to get your live feed from your studio to the up link station. There are several methods; Build a satellite up link (in excess of 100,000 USD), Install private fiber between two locations, or use high speed internet with a video over internet box. Although many channels around the world are still building up links I consider it out-dated and to expensive. The method I prefer the most is a 2Mb dedicated (upload) internet connection and video over internet box. This method is the same method that FOX NEWS , the NFL channel, and others around the world are beginning to use. There are companies that specialize in this method. Let me give you an example of how it works. Your live or prerecorded video feed is coming out the output of your video server and into the input of a encoder, and out the encoder into the input of a one of these little internet Video boxes. There is a box on the sending end and a box on the receiving end. These little boxes manage the video signal in real time and find the least congested internet path to deliver the live video feed. It uses smart cloud technology that allow the recovery of lost data packages to be recovered immediately. This ensures a clean, clear, and professional delivery of your video signal. The cost is much cheaper than spending hundreds of thousands on a satellite up link.

I would suggestion using professionals to set up your channel to avoid pitfalls. You can waste tens of thousands of dollars on using the wrong techniques if you are not familiar with what you are doing. Our services can help you start a satellite TV channel and avoid loosing money and wasting time. We have setup channels around the world on just about every major satellite. Feel free to browse our site or view our information on a satellite TV channel by clicking here.You may also fill our our contact form.





Start a Satellite TV Station – How To Choose The Right Satellite

If you read our site and some of our other blog posts you may find we talk quite a bit about the different techniques and strategies necessary to start a satellite TV channel. We talk about signal delivery, studio setup, video servers and several other issues. However one thing we have not discussed much about is what satellite or satellites should you broadcast on? This is indeed a question some people put no thought into while others put this as their number one priority.

If you already know what satellite you want to broadcast on and you are sure of your market potential then this article may do you little benefit. However if you are unsure or you are broadcasting to a country or countries that you are not familiar with then you need to keep a few facts in mind.

The first and foremost (and the most obvious) in your mind will be the geographical area (or better known as the satellite footprint) that the satellite covers. Most satellite footprints cover several countries or entire continents. However as impressive as a satellite footprint might sound it means nothing if there are not antennas tuned in to that satellite. In other words you can reach a entire continent but if there are no dishes (receivers/subscribers) pointed at that particular satellite then your effort is in vain. You may get a lower monthly rate for your satellite channel but how does that help if know one is watching? Church’s fall victim to this the most as they get sold on reaching a huge continent or area (for example Asia, or Europe or Africa) and are convinced to into signing a long term contract for a lower monthly price only to find out very few households actually are tuned in to that particular satellite.

Choosing a satellite depends on several factors.

One – The most single most important factor is how many people have antennas (dishes) pointed at that particular satellite? The more popular a satellite is the more it costs to broadcast on. A satellite reaching 1 million viewers will be much cheaper than one reaching 40 million.

Two – Is your channel a FTA channel? FTA stands for “Free to Air”. Do not let that confuse you as meaning free for you to broadcast. What it means is free for your viewers to see the channel without paying a subscription fee. Or are you going to charge a subscription fee for your channel? If there is a subscriptions fee some satellites may serve the purpose better than others.

Download our Free Ebook on how to start your own Satellite TV station to learn more now.

Three – Your budget. If you have a low budget then your options may be limited and you may have to make sacrifices to fit your budget. Although I never recommend broadcasting on a satellite with few viewers other techniques can be applied to lower the monthly fees. Some of these techniques deal with the compression of the video on the satellite transponder instead of using a fixed bit rate (Okay if that sounds confusing do not worry we can help you understand it easier). Pricing is always based on the amount of bandwidth you purchase. The more bandwidth the better quality of picture you have broadcasting to your viewers.

Keep these three points in mind. If you have questions or you want to avail of our professional services please feel free to contact us or browse our site by clicking here.