Telcos barred from IPTV

5 Jul 2010

China’s cablecos appear to have won the right to offer trial voice and data services, according to a report carried by TelecomAsia. Under the plans for the first ‘three-network integration’ trials, telcos will be forbidden from offering IPTV services. China’s State Council Information Office (SCIO) announced last week that the first trials will be held in Beijing, Shanghai, Harbin, Shenzhen, Dalian, Wuhan, Hangzhou, Nanjing, Qingdao, Xiamen, Mianyang and the Changsha-Zhuzhou district in Hunan. The much-delayed announcement did not give details on the content of the trials or the timetable. It follows months of negotiations between broadcast regulator SARFT and the telecoms and IT ministry MIIT, after the State Council announced in January that it aimed to bring about full convergence by 2015. However, the two key agencies have been continually unable to make a deal, compounded by the complexity of China’s labyrinthine system of media and internet regulation, involving as many as 14 government departments. The SCIO announcement said that during the trials, ‘SARFT is the responsible department for the integrated control of IPTV and mobile TV services, guided by the propaganda departments.’