Cabinet approves guidelines for IPTV services news
21 August 2008

Mumbai: The government today approved new rules for internet protocol television (IPTV) services in the country.

The union cabinet also approved amendment to the policy guidelines for downlinking of television channels that will allow broadcasters to provide content to IPTV service providers.

Earlier, broadcasters were allowed to share feed only with cable and DTH platforms. The new rules will ensure an institutional policy framework for IPTV players and pave the way for commercial roll-out of this service.

IPTV is a cable TV delivery platform that uses high speed internet connection to reach the customer.

In addition to regular programmes, IPTV gives consumers the option of a number of value-added services like interactive games, television content on demand, time-shift TV, interactive advertising among others.

Currently, the state-run Mahanagar Telephone Nigam and Bharat Sanchar Nigam provide IPTV services on their broadband networks.

Private telecom operators like Bharti Airtel and Reliance Communications already have the licence and are also planning to launch IPTV services. Even broadcasters and large cable players will also be able to obtain licences for IPTV services.

The new rules will allow IPTV operators to demand that broadcasters provide them with content on a par with cable and satellite TV operators.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) had submitted its final recommendations on IPTV to the information and broadcasting ministry several months ago.

A decision on the issue has been delayed as it required a decision on raising the foreign direct investment cap in IPTV services to 72 per cent from the current 49 per cent for the cable sector. 

 search domain-b
Cabinet approves guidelines for IPTV services