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RealTime IT News

Microsoft IPTV: Lose One, Win One

Just one week after a major telecom dropped Microsoft's Internet Protocol television (IPTV) platform, another has embraced it.

BT said it would use Microsoft's IPTV in the United Kingdom as part of a triple-play service bundle of voice, high -speed data and video.

"BT and Microsoft share a common vision for converged entertainment in the home," Gavin Patterson, group managing director of BT Retail, said in a statement.

The London voice and data provider and the Redmond, Wash., software giant did not release a timeline for IPTV rollout.

About a dozen large telecoms in North America, Western Europe and Asia-Pacific are participating in the trials, which advance from lab, to a limited number of test homes, and finally to 1,000 homes.

Throughout the stages, Microsoft, the telecoms and other partners, such as set-top box makers, work at integrating front and back-end systems.

In the United States, Microsoft's current high-profile IPTV relationship with SBC Communications is a 10-year, $400 million deal to use Microsoft's IPTV software.

IPTV is a crucial piece of the regional telecom multi-billion-dollar plan to use fiber-optic cable in order to deliver a "triple- play" bundle of television, phone and high-speed Internet services to consumers.

The IP TV service will include customizable channel lineups, video-on-demand, digital video recording, interactive program guides, event notifications and content protection features. Microsoft will also resell the IPTV platform through Alcatel .



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