Bahrain Telecommunications Company (Batelco) has announced the launch of IPTV services, initially for customers in selected newly developed areas only, including Reef Island. CEO Rashid Abdulla declared: ‘The delivery of digital television channels via our broadband lines enables Batelco to offer interactive services with a wide range of channels and additional benefits including video on demand content in full high definition (HD). Among the key features of the new IPTV service is user friendliness, as customers can watch whatever they want, whenever they want and enjoy a wide variety of content on a single set top box.’ Batelco’s IPTV service is being delivered in partnership with technology provider Selevision and promises a comprehensive selection of free-to-air and subscription channels, hundreds of on-demand movies, TV on demand, time shift and personal video recording. Residents of Reef Island are invited to visit a Batelco retail outlet to sign up for IPTV, which the company is promising to expand to other areas in due course. TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database says that Batelco faces extremely well-established competition in the pay-TV market, with satellite direct-to-home services already serving an estimated 99% of Bahraini homes.