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Optus rolls out IPTV with Fetch

Prices aggressively, tweaks CDN, takes it mobile

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Optus has unveiled its IPTV content offering, branded as Optus MeTV and powered by the wholesale Fetch TV platform.

Optus’ MeTV is a hybrid service combining digital free-to-air TV with on-demand and linear subscription channels, a PVR service, and web video with packages starting at $AU9.95 over 24 months and subscription channel packs an additional $AU6.95 per month. The service also has a mobile app component.

Optus differentiates itself from other FetchTV providers - like iiNet and Internode - by delivering the service from its own CDN (content distribution network) infrastructure and adaptive streaming technology, rather than FetchTV’s IP multicast streaming infrastructure.

Optus says the CDN investment allows it to deliver content as an over-the-top service to customers of any fixed ISP. It may also use the CDN to leverage content from other SingTel content offerings.

Ovum analyst David Kennedy said “this illustrates how important possession of infrastructure will remain in the Australian NBN environment currently being assembled. As the fixed access network is monopolized and separated, the sources of market power are shifting to content and to other parts of the network.”

Expanding the service across mobile, Optus and FetchTV have also developed a dedicated Optus MeTV app integrated with Fetch, allowing customers to access programming information and remote record content from any location. The app will also transform the smartphone or tablet into a remote control and keyboard while at home.

Kennedy adds, “Optus’ strengths in mobile and content delivery infrastructure places plenty of daylight between them and their ISP competitors, and will secure its place as the number two operator in the Australian market.”

Optus MeTV with fetch will launch later this week to all existing Optus customers. The Optus MeTV mobile app is expected to be available for download from late November 2011. ®

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