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AT&T Says Get ready for IPTV

by March 22, 2006

Internet Protocol Television (IPTV) is an idea that we've known is coming for a long time but looks like it might touch down in certain areas of the US by late 2006. IPTV will be yet another competitor to cable and satellite TV services. What AT & T has called "infinite channel TV" will be quality audio and video transmitted to residential IP subscriber lines or simply television brought to you by the phone company. It's another phase in the unified data service war between Cable and Telephone that already competes for cell phone , IP phone and internet services.

On Tuesday Ed Whitacre, Chairman and CEO "extreme" of AT & T made a series of bold statements about his company's plans to aggressively pursue the new media. He was promoting AT & T's multi-billion dollar investment in network infrastructure undertaken by the telecom provider. His plans include broader high speed lines needed to launch new TV services. But Whitacre also talked about his bid to purchase Bell South which may lead to customers in the South East being among the first IPTV recipients. True to his self confident swagger Mr. Whitacre laid down the gauntlet for the Cable TV companies saying their prices have increased due to lack of competition and that his company will "change the game" for consumers who are trapped.

Five Principals to ensure commercial availability of devices that attach to IPTV

  • Nationwide compatibility
  • Open standards
  • Reasonable licensing terms
  • Reasonable testing and certification
  • Reasonable terms of service for customers

AT & T CEO, Ed Whitacre's announcements come close on the heels of the Consumer Electronics Association's Entertainment Technology Policy Summit that took place last week in Washington DC. The CEA along with major US telecom companies including AT & T, BellSouth and Verizon announced its " Five Principals " for IPTV in a press release. The principals outline the company's promise to consumers that the new telecom video technologies will observe compatibility standards and fair pricing ethics. It's an important step toward unifying the consumer electronics that are about to pour into market from an array of manufacturers interested in cashing in on IPTV.

Hopefully IPTV will add more flexible TV subscriber services. There is no excuse for the current pricing paradigm that sees us paying for channels we don't want. A more competitive and efficient system could do away with paying for outmoded channel packages. Why not pricing for episodes or movies we actually want? On demand programming seemed to set new standards for entertainment purchasing possibilities.

Special Thanks to www.hometheaterfocus.com

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About the author:

Wayde is a tech-writer and content marketing consultant in Canada s tech hub Waterloo, Ontario and Editorialist for Audioholics.com. He's a big hockey fan as you'd expect from a Canadian. Wayde is also US Army veteran, but his favorite title is just "Dad".

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