SES ASTRA today announced the launch of Spain’s first HD channel on ASTRA. The new HD channel is called Canal+ HD and is part of Sogecable’s digital pay-TV package Digital+ which broadcasts via ASTRA on 19.2° East. The programme line-up of Canal+ HD includes premium movies, series and sports events such as the 2008 European Soccer Championship whose 31 matches will be broadcast all in HD.

SES ASTRA had announced in October 2007 an agreement with Sogecable for the use of an additional transponder for digital TV and HDTV.

The fact that Spain’s first HD channel broadcasts via ASTRA proves that our satellites are the technology of choice for high definition,” says Luis Sahun, Managing Director ASTRA Marketing Ibérica. “We are proud that Sogecable, being a pioneer in the Spanish HDTV market, has chosen ASTRA to broadcast Canal+ HD.

After the launch of Canal+ HD, SES ASTRA will transmit 29 HD channels. The company thereby features Europe’s most extensive choice of HD channels from leading broadcasters including BSkyB, BBC, Discovery, National Geographic, CANAL+, M6, TF1 and Premiere. The good news is that by end of 2010, SES ASTRA expects to transmit 100 HD channels.