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UK broadcasters partner with BT for ADSL IPTV

December 11, 2008 - UK broadcasters the BBC and ITV have partnered with telco BT to deliver on-demand TV via broadband and spearhead a common industry approach to bringing broadband-delivered content to living room televisions. The initiative is reported to be open to all public service broadcasters, device developers and other broadband operators besides BT, and involves the development of a standards-based open environment for broadband-connected digital TV receivers/set-top boxes, which could receive DTT or satellite broadcasts and combine them with VOD content delivered via broadband. “Audiences tell us that they want more services through their television set," said Mark Thomson, Director-General of the BBC. "I am pleased that the BBC is working with industry partners such as device manufacturers, ISPs and other content providers on proposals which will bring real benefits for consumers. We are building on a history of collaborating with and supporting the industry in research and development which includes NICAM stereo, Teletext and Freeview.” Ian Livingston, CEO of BT, added: "Television and broadband are a compelling combination. Together they can offer live TV along with an unrivalled choice of on demand content and interactive services. It will mean that you can watch what you want whenever you want on your television. We are looking forward to working with the BBC, ITV and other Internet service providers to support an open standard for the free to air market in the UK." How this new project will dovetail with BT's closed-network IPTV service 'BT Vision' remains to be seen, but more details should be forthcoming soon.

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