BNamericas, quoting local newspaper El Cronista, reports that Argentine media group Grupo Clarin expects to offer triple-play voice, data and video services in 2009. It already offers cable TV and broadband services via subsdiaries Cablevision and Multicanal, and expects to start testing IP telephony in the last quarter of 2008 with customers who already take its cable TV and broadband services. ‘Depending on the results, we’ll launch triple-play at the beginning or the end of the first half of 2009,’ said Gonzalo Hita, operations manager of Fibertel, the ISP division of Cablevision.
Earlier this month, cableco Telecentro launched triple-play services in greater Buenos Aires. Local telcoms consultancy Carrier y Asociados said that Grupo Clarin is revealing its triple-play strategy now so as not to get left behind. ‘Telecoms operators are not allowed to offer triple-play but cable TV operators are…and a small competitor such as Telecentro recently launched. Now Grupo Clarin is marking [its] territory [by] saying that they are working to launch this offering,’ said Enrique Carrier, head of the consultancy. Telcos such as former incumbents Telefonica de Argentina and Telecom Argentina have been pressuring the government to allow them to offer bundled services over a single network. Current regulations do not allow telcos to offer broadcasting services.