Telstra To Sell IPTVs Expanded Tablet Range And First Run Movies

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Telstra is looking to move into selling devices for the home that connect to the Internet including flat panel TVs, monitors, an expanded line up of tablets, notebooks and all in one PCs as well as new services that can be delivered over the Internet.Several Telstra executives attended this year’s CES show in Las Vegas with several vendors spanning both TV and PC products advising ChannelNews that the traditional phone and data carrier is looking to expand their portfolio of product offerings.

In recent weeks Telstra has seen a significant jump in consumers using their BigPond Movies services with the company now getting over 100,000 downloads a month, according to Ben Kinealy, the Head of Internet Services at Telstra.

According to Kinealy, Telstra is now reaping the benefit of their new software service which allows BigPond Movie content spanning over 1500 movies and TV programs to be delivered to LG and Samsung TVs without the need for a set top box.

Users simply access a BigPond Application on their IPTV to access the content.

AT CES, several vendors including Toshiba, Sharp and Panasonic, along with several Chinese brands, said that they were currently in discussions with Telstra with a view to delivering the BigPond Movie Service on their new IPTVs which will be delivered into the Australian market this year.

A major Hollywood Studio executive has also told ChannelNews that “there is every possibility that Telstra will get access to movies at the same time as the movies are released to DVD distributors such as Blockbuster this year”.

ChannelNews believes that Fox, Warner, and Paramount are in discussions with Telstra regarding the delivery of first run movies in Australia with one stumbling block being the development of a standard for the delivery of content that protects the movie studio’s from pirating.

An LG executive said: “We have a close relationship with Telstra and there is every possibility that they will start selling Tablets and TVs to consumers along with content this year”.

When asked recently as to how close Telstra was to cementing deals with Hollywood studios for the delivery of first run content in Australia, Telstra’s Kinealy said: “Very close. Watch this space we will have some interesting announcements shortly”.

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