Making a synergistic move, Sunil Mittal's Bharti is set to enter the niche "Internet Protocol TV" (IPTV) segment where video content would be offered through its telephone lines.
UTStarcom, which is the technology partner of Bharti in this venture of 'Triple Play', has installed a digital headend in Gurgaon where the trial run is on with some free-to-air (FTA) TV channels and other video content, sources said.
UTStarcom is building the entire IPTV architecture for Bharti. This includes the headend and the digital set-top boxes.
The move to enter IPTV segment is synergistic with Bharti's current operations as the private telecom major has a sizable fixed telephone retail customers and increasing broadband users where it wants to ride video content through its copper network.
Bharti is working on an offering of about 100 TV channels. It is creating the network transmission capacity for IPTV and is in talks with the broadcasters, they added.
IPTV service claims to represent the convergence of communication and broadcast. Through this system a digital television service is delivered to subscribing consumers using the Internet Protocol over a broadband connection.
This service is often provided in conjunction with Video on Demand and may also include Internet services such as Web access and VoIP where it is called Triple Play and is supplied by a broadband operator using the same infrastructure.