Columbus Communications nears IPTV service

One of the larger MSOs in the Caribbean, Columbus Communications, is on the verge of launching a hybrid IP video service in multiple countries throughout the region. The new service is expected to offer IP-delivered VoD and TV Everywhere services.

Based in Barbados, Columbus is the broadband services provider in Trinidad, Jamaica, Grenada and Curacao, where it operates under the name of FLOW. Its hybrid video platform will be international in scope, with equipment from U.S.-based Evolution Digital, Norway's Conax and Poland's Cubiware. Canada's UXP Systems is providing a unified UI for voice, video and data services on multiscreen devices, while Sweden's MPS Broadband is responsible for the content management system. American player Elemental Technologies is the encoding platform and Canadian firm Seawell Networks handles CDN.

The advanced system will also include HD-capable IP set-tops that support adaptive bit rate technology, allowing the MSO to deliver "many new features which will be announced in the coming months," said a story in IPTV News.

"The solution is being built in phases and Columbus Communications' approach towards adopting open standards solutions show a clear indication that the advantages of DVB Open Standards has found [its] way to the pay TV platforms this side of the Atlantic," Rohit Mehra, vice president of Americas at Conax, said in the story.

Columbus uses a ringed submarine fiber optic network and terrestrial fiber and coax to provide service to a residential and commercial market of 450,000 customers.

The Caribbean area is hot for IPTV, with the Cayman Islands on tap for a fourth quarter launch this year and the Caribbean division of Cable & Wireless Communications (LIME) having launched in Barbados last April. LIME's service, like Columbus, is in the process of spreading to other islands in the area.

For more:
- IPTV News has this story

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Elemental lands Columbus Communications for video play in LatAm, Caribbean
Cable & Wireless Communications' LIME brings IPTV to Barbados