Saturday, July 07, 2007

Telco's IPTV

The technology may be different, but how the product gets to the customer really isn't that different. And the actual video service delivered to the customer isn't any different.

Unfortunately, for the telco guys, their video service is - at the moment - pretty much like cable service. It's offering linear video channels, video-on-demand and other items such as an IPG and interactive TV. Telco video is even bundled with
broadband and voice, much like cable's triple-play.

Telcos may attempt to compete on price, but is that enough?

This brings us to the second point. How do telcos think they're going to compete with cable - or even satellite TV - when they're delivering a "me-to" offering?

In addition to selling the usual television fare, how about offering more niche and/or ethnic programming than what's currently available from pay-TV incumbents? How about taking a stab at a la carte options? Or expanding family tiers?

Telco video services need to think ahead like satellite TV did more than a decade ago when it launched services. Dish platforms are delivering programming not available via cable (DirecTV's NFL Sunday Ticket), the latest technology (DVRs
coming from DirecTV and DISH Network), ethnic channels (again, cable and both DBS players and GlobeCast offer these channels), or family-oriented content (again, some cable, the DBS guys and the Sky Angel DBS service).

Telco video cannot compete with a service that looks like - and smells like - cable.

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