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October 2017


CONVERGENCE NEWS

 

BROADBAND SUBS UP 3.33%

T h e number of broadband subscribers in India increased 3.33% to touch 310.87 million at the end of July.

The top 5 ISPs had 89.79% market share, according to TRAI data.

Reliance Jio Infocom led the pack with a subscriber base of 128.58 million, followed by Bharti Airtel (58.91 million), Vodafone (42.50 million), Idea Cellular (27.70 million) and BSNL (21.45 million).

As on 31 July, the top five wired broadband service providers were BSNL (9.66 million), Bharti Airtel (2.10 million), Atria Convergence Technologies (1.23 million), MTNL (0.97 million) and YOU Broadband (0.66 million).

The top five wireless broadband service providers were Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd (128.58 million), Bharti Airtel (56.80 million), Vodafone (42.49 million), Idea Cellular (27.70 million) and Reliance Communications (12.75 million).


COURT WANTS OTT REGULATED

Blue Whale menace: The Madurai bench of the Madras HC has directed the Centre to make all OTT providers comply with Indian laws. The court took the Blue Whale issue as a suo motu public interest litigation after a student, who played the game, had committed suicide in Madurai.

OTT refers to transmission of audio, video and other content via internet without requiring users to subscribe to a traditional cable or satellite TV service.


IRDETO FOR TATASKY OTT

Tata Sky has selected Irdeto for its Over-The-Top (OTT) services.

While the first phase of the project has been launched with Android devices, the follow-on phases will extend Tata Sky's OTT service to PC and iOS devices.

This will be Irdeto's first association with Tata Sky. Says Irdeto senior VP of sales & services Bengt Jonsson, "There is a tremendous growth opportunity for OTT services in India, which brings about fierce competition in the industry. As such, it is crucial for operators like Tata Sky to have the freedom to innovate and the confidence to take risks and be in control of their future. This will be our first time working with Tata Sky and we are heavily invested in helping them meet their business goals. We can offload the complexity of managing security, fragmented technologies and backend workflow for them, and enable them to focus on delivering value to their customers."

Irdeto will manage the planning and deployment of the project for Tata Sky, including both implementing its own solutions and working with third parties to ensure successful endto- end integration.



TRAI: DELICENSE AIRWAVES FOR M2M

The TRAI has suggested that airwaves be delicensed for M2M communication services. Also, 1 MHz of spectrum (867 to 868 MHz) & another 6 units in 915-935 MHz be allotted for M2M. TRAI has also suggested the 'V band' (57-64 GHz) for M2M services.

Unlike person-to-person communication, M2M technologies involve communication between two devices. It typically enables wired and wireless devices to talk to each other using sensors, and such applications can be deployed in new-age infrastructure projects such as smart cities, smart grids, smart homes, smart heath and smart transportation. The technology is a key component of the Internet of Things (IoT) & SMART Cities proposals.

The mobile operator's body - COAI has opposed the move. "There is no immediate need to delicense any additional spectrum bands or change current licence conditions for provisioning M2M communication services," a mobile phone company told the press.


TRAI DROPS INTERCONNECT CHARGES

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India has reduced Interconnection charges for mobile-to-mobile calls to 6 paise per minute, starting October 1st 2017, and for it to be done away with completely by 1st January 2020. This is a 57% reduction from the previous interconnection charge of 14 paise.

Interconnect charges are charges paid by the telecom operator of the calling party, to the telecom operator of the recipient of the call. This is called the "calling party pays" regime, and is meant to incentivise interconnection between telecom operators, and ensure that users of one telecom operator are able to call another.


BENGALI OTT LAUNCHED

Bengali film and TV production house Shree Venkatesh Films (SVF) has launched its subscription-led Over-The-Top (OTT) platform Hoichoi.

Hoichoi offers over 500 Bengali movies and more than 1000 Bengali songs via streaming, to Bengali audiences globally.

In India, the service has three introductory plans: ` 149 for 3 months, ` 249 for 6 months and ` 399 for a year.

For the international market, the monthly charge is $8.99 or $79.99 annually.

The OTT platform is powered by ViewLift, the international content distribution platform, and Amazon Web Services, world's leading cloud computing solution provider. This will enable subscribers to stream videos seamlessly.

The Hoichoi app is available for download on Android and iOS. It is also Chromecast and AirPlay enabled, and will be coming soon on Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku.

There is offline download facility available for content. The content has English subtitles.


1,233 CRORE TO HOTSTAR FOR GLOBAL OTT

Star India has injected ` 1,233 crore ($192.04 million) into its digital content arm Novi Digital Entertainment over the last 6 months. Novi Digital Entertainment runs streaming platforms Hotstar and Starsports.com.

Its OTT platform Hotstar is battling Netflix & Amazon Prime Video, for the emerging Indian OTT video market. There are also several local OTT platforms including ALTBalaji, Voot, Sony Liv, dittoTV and Ozee.

21st Century Fox CEO James Murdoch had recently said that Hotstar had crossed 1 billion minutes of watch time in a single day during the fourth quarter ended 30 June for the first time since its launch.

Hotstar now has the IPL digital rights unlitt 2011, which it hopes will propel it to the top position, both in viewership and subscription revenues. With this property, Hotstar is being rolled out globally. Hotstar has now, officially debuted in the US and Canada.

The company looking after Hotstar's operations in the U.S. is 21st Century Fox Star US LLC, while Star US has appointed Novi Entertainment as its Canadian resident affiliate for collecting subscription fees.

Price is: $9.99 monthly in the U.S. and CAD$ 12.99 in Canada. A month's free trial is offered.

Hotstar is available on Google & iOS. It can also be watched on TV via Apple TV, Chromecast, Android & Roku. n