Monday, February 21, 2005

Alcatel and Microsoft to Collaborate on IPTV

Alcatel and Microsoft announced a global collaboration agreement aimed at accelerating the rollout of IPTV services for broadband operators worldwide. The companies will offer an integrated IPTV delivery solution. The partners expect their precedent-setting agreement will help expand the quickly-growing ecosystem of IPTV industry partners and enable telecommunication providers to take advantage of global economies of scale fueled by large-scale IPTV deployments planned across the globe.

As part of the agreement, the two companies plan to pursue a series of joint initiatives, including:

  • Developing and customizing new applications to meet the unique needs of different cultures and markets around the world,

  • Enhancing application and network resilience for better reliability in large-scale deployments,

  • Integration of content, security and digital rights management to ensure secure delivery of high-quality content, to and throughout the home,

  • Managing quality of service through intelligent video packet handling, and

  • End-to-end integration of management systems for the application platforms and all components of the network including the home network.

Alcatel said it will continue developing and supporting its own Open Media Platform (OMP) platform, which already has 24 commercial and trial deployments. The Alcatel Open Media Platform is also a software middleware platform that enables broadband service providers to create, deliver and manage multimedia entertainment services. Going forward, the companies will be recommending their joint solution.
  • In recent months, Microsoft has announced a series of high-profile wins for its IPTV platform, including Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom, Verizon, SBC, BellSouth, Telecom Italia, KPN, Swisscom/Bluewin and others.

  • In 2003, Alcatel acquired iMagicTV, a developer of software for delivering multi-channel digital television over broadband networks, for approximately US$30 million in aggregate. Alcatel already owned approximately 16% of iMagicTV. The iMagicTV IP video solution enables digital TV services, an interactive program guide, video-on-demand, pay-per-view and other interactive information services. iMagicTV is based in Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada.

  • In October 2000, Alcatel and Oracle formed Thirdspace, a joint venture targeting interactive, broadband TV.


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