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O2 dials up IPTV offering in U.K.

Mobile phone operator to try out service

LONDON — Mobile phone operator O2 will try out an IPTV service in the U.K. next year following the successful launch of a similar offering in the Czech Republic.

There O2 provides more than 50 channels including content from Warner Bros., Sony Pictures, Paramount, Disney, Paramount and HBO.

O2, owned by Spanish telco Telefonica, bought U.K. broadband operator Be a year ago. But Blighty is a much tougher market than the Czech Republic, where it has signed up more than 70,000 customers since its bow in September 2006.

IPTV is still to take off in the U.K. where British Telecom’s Vision service and Tiscali’s service — formerly known as Home Choice — are struggling.

Rival mobile operator Orange is also teeing up a U.K. IPTV service, but its launch has been delayed despite deals with Disney and MGM.

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