Digital TV technology company NDS now has over 50 million active smart cards in operation.

Revenue from conditional access for digital television in the last quarter of 2004 was up 109% on the same period the previous year.

The News Corporation controlled company, which now reports its results in dollars rather than pounds, reports revenue for the last quarter is up 85% on the previous year to $142 million.

The year on year rise in revenue is significantly affected by its contract to provide smart card services to DIRECTV. Revenue for interactive television middleware and personal video recorder projects with DIRECTV has yet to be recognised. Other significant customers include BSkyB, Sky Italia and Foxtel.

Commenting on the results, Dr Abe Peled, president and chief executive officer of NDS, said it was a landmark quarter in which the company activated its 50 millionth digital television smart card. It has now has 51.8 million active digital TV smart cards, an 8% increase on the previous quarter.