IPTV Trials by TelstraClear in New Zealand

By John Nixon 30/11/2009

This morning TelstraClear announced that it had completed trials of an IPTV system they hope to offer to their broadband subscribers throughout New Zealand. This of course is on the back of the Government’s plans for a National Ultra-fast Fibre Optic network.
If the IPTV service is enabled, I just wonder what TelstraClear will offer in the way of programming.
Of course the 10 or so Freeview channels. These are “free to air” and you can distribute them in the country and without any special permissions.
However SKY TV has built up such an impressive subscriber base, mainly due to the exclusive rights they have for major sporting events and other speciality channels. The distribution rights for these channels cost a pile of money and are heavily protected by contract, copyright, encryption schemes etc.
Outside of what SKY offers, there’s not very much out there in the way of programming of interest to Kiwi viewers. Ethnic channels, baseball, gridiron football… not worth paying for I suspect.
So I imagine that TelstraClear would have to chum up with SKY. They do already in the markets where they have their cable networks (Wellington and Christchurch). It’s entirely on the cards, time will tell. It certainly is a time of change for media distribution.

0 Responses to “IPTV Trials by TelstraClear in New Zealand”

  • John, there’s also the TIVO tie-up with Telecom to consider. While the content is currently very limited, I’ve been impressed with the delivery over DSL of on-demand content. The technology, which uses 802.11g wireless networking within the house to download content via your wireless router, works better than I thought it would. According to Stuff today, TVNZ is also about to do a deal to allow its TVNZ on Demand service to be viewed on the Playstation 3 console. Seems like there is going to be an explosion of options for on-demand and streaming content well before we get any sort of penetration of FTTH.