China's IPTV is about TV, not the PC

Release Date:2008-01-22  Author:October 26, 2007, Robert Clark Source: telecomas  Click:

China's unfolding IPTV market is about the TV, not the PC, says ZTE.

Yu Yifang, GM of ZTE Multimedia & Terminal Products, says China's market is being driven by the wide availability of broadband and of TV sets.
The service, which he predicts will add 350,000 users next year, is targeted at rural dwellers and older people who are uncomfortable with using a PC keyboard.

China has approximately 100 million broadband users and 350 million households with a TV. PC ownership in the countryside is under 3%. Up to now, China has just 1 million or so IPTV users in a handful of "trial" deployments around the country.

But Yu believes that in the wake of the 17th party congress, which confirmed officials in new posts and set policy directions for the next five years, IPTV "will develop very fast."

ZTE IPTV solutions are running in more than ten trials around the country, supporting 250,000 users.

The business challenge is to offer a service that is competitive with the cable TV, which can cost as little as $5 a month. "IPTV needs to offer differentiation," Yu says, listing out video conference and communications, security surveillance, games, stock purchasing and value-added services as most likely applications. "We give the service providers a development kit so they can design a game or other application for IPTV," he said.

Abroad ZTE is running IPTV trials in a dozen emerging markets, including Russia, India, Venezuela, Thailand, Turkey and South Africa.