Wednesday, June 04, 2008

BPN 1118 KPN goes mobile TV

On the even of the European football championship, the Dutch incumbent telco KPN launches its MobielTV service. KPN will use the DVB-H technology and will be competing with Vodafone, which uses UMTS and HSDPA.

MobielTV will offer 11 broadcast stations: Nederland 1, Nederland 3, RTL 4, SBS 6, Jetix/Veronica, RTL Z, MTV Music, Nick Toons, Xite, Discovery Channel en Playboy TV, while more stations will be added in the future. The service will be offered on Nokia and Samsung devices. The service will cost 9,50 euro separately; when bundled with a new subscription above 27,50 euro, the service will be free. The service will have coverage of 85 per cent in The Netherlands, while 65 per cent in the car and in the train.

KPN will be the only DVB-H information provider in the Netherlands in collaboration with its technology partner Samsung. KPN has the sole right to the DVB-T/H frequencies until 2017. KPN will be in the company of other European telcos, offering TV services. Italy was first in launching with Operator La 3 of H3G, part of Hutchinson Whampoa, and has 600.000 DVB-H users. In the meantime competition has started in Italy with Telecom Italia Movile (TIM) and Vodafone; in Italy UMTS is used as back-up service. DVB-H services are also operational in Germany (Mobile 3.0), Switzerland (Swisscom), Austria (TDF/Mediabroadcast) and Albania (DigitAlb).

KPN is negotiating with Vodafone and T-Mobile to offer the service MobielTV through their networks. Vodafone took the occasion to send out a press release, saying that Vodafone had already a mobile TV service with 14 stations and a subscription for 7,50 euro a month. It also notes that with DVB-H you can only watch live TV, while with mobile internet people can watch TV in their own time.

KPN can make use of the DVB-H technology as it runs the Digitenne television service in the Netherlands. This television distribution service is part of the offer by KPN, while KPN has also interactive TV via a broadband connection. In total KPN has 553.000 TV subscribers over against 296.000 subscribers last year.

It is a kind of sarcastic. But in 1997 KPN was ordered by the Telecom watchdog OPTA to get rid of its cable network company Vision; now the company competes with the cable companies on triple play. MobielTV is an advantage to KPN.

Blog Posting Number: 1118

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