As exclusively tipped by SmartHouse late last year, Samsung has added seven new TV channels to choose from their BigPond TV service reaching IP televisions, Blu-ray players and home theatre systems.The move enables owners of the Korean Giant’s IP enabled products to enjoy live streamed access to 24/7 news, dedicated AFL, NRL, V8 Supercars channels, 24/7 BigPond Sports News, live horse racing from Sydney and Melbourne and a music channel called BPM.
Ben Kinealy, head of IPTV at Telstra said his company’s BigPond TV audience was booming and the move to allow Samsung customers access to its content means a rapid growth in audience for its service. The national carrier said it was experiencing over 30,000 movie downloads per week, and had 95,000 installations of its TBox in Australian homes.
BigPond TV is also already available unmetered for most of the Telstra’s broadband customers, Kineally said.
In what is said to be a world first, Samsung will use the world’s first Widevine live adaptive TV channels that simulate free to air TV delivered through the existing broadband internet connection.
The Widevine adaptive bit-rate system is able to identify the appropriate video quality to stream based on the bandwidth available at the destination device.
“It will ensure that customers watching BigPond TV on a Samsung TV will enjoy the same high-quality experience as consumers get from traditional broadcast TV,” said Kinealy.
The launch follows last September’s arrival of BigPond Sport Game Analyser on Samsung TVs and Blu-ray players. The BigPond Sport Game Analyser is expected to be expanded to include AFL from the 2011 season.
Fresh out of CES, Internet TV is now being branded as Smart TV, as all the major vendors, including Panasonic, LG and Samsung vie for a share of the market.
At the Vegas show, Samsung showed of its Smart Hub which offers access to a range of paid for and free apps covering sports, entertainment, informationm, games and social networking, including YouTube, Facebook, ESPN, Vimeo and Twitter.
The Smart Hub sports a new Search All function to make it easier to look for content both from the TV and DLNA-enabled media storage devices.
Samsung Electronics Australia’s Group Manager of AV, Evan Manolis, said: “We’re committed to delivering the latest in local on-demand TV content to our customers.”
“Partnering with Telstra to deliver BigPond TV on our products not only allows us to offer the very latest in content, but also provides our customers with world first Widevine technology – for a superior IPTV viewing experience,” Mr Manolis said.
The BigPond TV service is available via Samsung Apps on all new internet enabled Samsung TVs, Blu-ray players and home theatre systems, as well as the Telstra T-Box unit.
The service is free to use and unmetered for most BigPond internet access customers, but data charges may apply for users who are not BigPond customers.