VM02 set to launch IPTV service soon

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  • You saying cracking on OB, but I wasn't aware they were planning to launch a IPTV service anyway. Unlike Sky, they have a cable tv service, so I'm unsure of the benefit of this service to VMO2. Perhaps it's to expand their tv service into areas not served by the cableco, but what will that tv service look like soon with the ever rise of the streamers?

    I await details of this service with interest.

  • There was news of a trial for Broadband-only customers, but that made it sound like an attractively priced bundle of on-demand content streaming services, not linear live channels being streamed like with their VM Go app. But because of NDAs there was only the hint to be gleamed from the trial sign-up page to go on. So it could be something that looks like a Roku or it could equally be something that looks like TV360 but by internet rather than broadcast.

    The forum speculation when the trial was first annouced it seems many thought it was for more price conscious customers who only want broadband and were on VM's network, but it could equally be the off-net TV product VM have long talked about wanting but never offered.

    As VMO2 said recently they are going to change the technology they deliver their broadband via, over time, to one shared by their broadband competitors, that would certainly mean anything IPTV they develop could be rolled out wider than their existing (and currently closed) network. Ultimately it could be their only TV product and that would cut the costs of running more than one system type.

  • That's right Cheeky, thanks for that reminder. My brain is not attached at the moment, I remember that now.

    So unlike the soon to launch Sky IPTV service, this will not be a full tv service, but something akin to a firetv stick.

  • As Virgin use more and more of their finite capacity for broadband, I can see them only offering broadband in the future and this could be the only way to receive VM TV.

    Given with Cable they dig up your lawn/driveway and lay a cable, then route/split that cable when it enters your home, the average person wouldn't known what technology is being used to deliver their TV. VM have already switched their On-Demand on their boxes over to Internet Protocol (IP), but only the customers with an interest who read up of these things on the internet would know about that, there was nothing different to the customer, they weren't sent a new box or had another cable layed.

    I can't remember for sure (maybe it never happened) but I recall VM saying something like they would move over to having an IP backbone on their network for TV between Head Ends and just run it as Broadcast to from the Head End to the Customer. Has this happened? I can't remember. But the important point is that it would be done, like the On-Demand change, without the customer noticing.

    I'm fairly sure the existing TV boxes on VM's network all have the necessary IP capabilities to run the last part via IP in the future.

    The difference, when it's eventually implemented, will be that the linear live channels will be Multicast rather than individual streams.

    For example, if all VM's TV customers were watching BBC1 and they each had their own stream that would be a) expensive to provide b) wasteful of finite resources c) would probably have technical difficulties like break-up, lag, audio being out of sync due to running so many streams in a limited space.

    Multicast basically means only one stream is sent to each area, and the end user basically tunes in. So in effect it's still being Broadcast as the channel is being sent to all areas at all times.

    I'm oversimplifying how it works here, so others may justifiably pick holes in what I just wrote.

    My points are that when VM go IP-only with their TV product the customer will likely not notice, and the space those linear live channels take on their network will likely be much the same.

    It would be like if the food manufacturers changed how they delivered their product to the supermarket distribution hub. If the baked beans were shipped via rail instead of road to the supermarket's distribution hub the customer picking up their tin at the supermarket wouldn't know any different.

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