MTNL takes IPTV to Delhi

by CXOtoday Staff    Oct 18, 2006

After Mumbai, Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited announced the launch of (Internet Protocol Television) IPTV in New Delhi. IPTV is a convergence of cable TV, internet and telephone services.

Initially MTNL would offer 30 free-to-air channels at a charge of Rs 125 and will also add other pay channels as per TRAI guidelines,” said R.S.P. Sinha, CMD. It will however, offer 20 channels at Rs 199 per month in Mumbai. It expects to provide 250 channels for Rs 200-Rs 250 in the near future.

MTNL has partnered with Aksh optical fibre and UT Starcom for the delivery of Internet Protocol Television (IPTV). In Mumbai, the content will be provided by IOL Broadband Ltd.

The service has various features such as video on demand, time-shifted TV - a technology that enables one to watch last one week’s television content aired by any available channel at the push of a button - and video conferencing.

Registration of IPTC service would begin from October 25 in New Delhi and October 21 in Mumbai. New Delhi operations will commence November 1.

“Currently, MTNL has 1.52 lakh broadband subscribers in Delhi and 1.83 lakh in Mumbai. We would like to target first these subscribers and then fixed line users for IPTV,” said Sinha.

Subscribers would get a consolidated bill for all the three services - phone, broadband and IPTV. Subscribers who opt for the IPTV service will gain access to MTNL’s new tri-band connection to receive video on demand, voice and content through a single network.

Bharti Enterprises has also been testing IPTV service in certain locations in India for sometime now. Another player, global networking equipment provider Nortel Networks, is another player which is planning to run IPTV set-top boxes on a trial basis in India, soon. It has tied up with LG for the venture, and will import set-top boxes from Korea.