According to Telecompaper, Russian mobile operator Vimpelcom has selected the IPTV platform offered by Chinese vendor ZTE Corporation for deployment in the Russian regions and Kazakhstan. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database notes that Vimpelcom first launched IPTV services in Moscow and St Petersburg in May 2009, and its IPTV service was available in 18 cities at end-December 2010; Vimpelcom had around 100,000 IPTV subscribers at that date. Elsewhere, under the Beeline brand, Vimpelcom will run a commercial IPTV pilot in Kazakhstan before the end of 2011, also using equipment supplied by ZTE. At the time of writing, the only telco in Kazakhstan to offer IPTV was fixed line incumbent Kazakhtelecom, which had an estimated subscriber base of just 6,000 at end-March 2010.
DigitalTVEurope.net quotes Vimpelcom marketing spokesman Timur Alyautdinov as saying that Vimpelcom was ‘pleased with the cost and functionality provided by ZTE’s platform’, going on to indicate that Vimpelcom’s IPTV service is now available in three additional cities, namely Smolensk, Bryansk and Kemerovo. Residents in all three cities can now access the ‘Beeline Basic’ package, which includes 80 Russian and international channels, as well as six HD channels, for just RUB195 (USD6.9) per month.