Stream, OpenTV in box pact

100,000 set tops set to go in Italo market

MILAN — Telecom Italia’s multimedia unit Stream has signed a pact with U.S. group OpenTV for the digital software the Italian company will use for its new set top boxes.

OpenTV technology is used in Europe by several broadcasters, including France’s Tf1, Sweden’s Telia and British Interactive Broadcasting, the joint venture created by BSkyB, BT, Matsushita and Midland Bank. Stream has said it has made an initial order of 100,000 set top boxes using OpenTV technology to Italy’s producer Italtel.

Stream has started digital satellite TV broadcasting through three transponders on the Hot Bird satellites, aiming to reach at least 500,000 subscribers in two years. From June, it will offer a pay TV package that includes a Universal Studios film channel and a pay per view service.

Established in 1993 by state own giant Telecom Italia (formerly known as Stet) for developing and distributing multimedia services using the infrastructure of its parent company, Stream has been working on the development of TV, pay per view and video on demand services, banking heavily and solely on cable technology. Five years later, the company has accumulated a 400 billion lire ($220 million) loss and reached only 56,000 subscribers.

Despite these problems, Stream will not abandon cable, but will focus on satellite. In the pay TV service, the company will continue providing systems that deliver channels supplied by other content providers, including Universal, CNI, CNN, Euronews, Eurosport, the Cartoon Network, the Discovery Channel, and more.

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 0

Leave a Reply

No Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More Digital News from Variety