LG Electronics is hoping to step up its game as it pushes harder into the IPTV market with the promise that 20 models of its newest web-enabled TVs will have embedded access to on-demand movie and TV episode rental service BigPond in Australia. The TVs will also have access to YouTube and a range of IP services in the not-too-distant future. It's partnering with Telstra on the rollout. The service will be available to any broadband-connected customer, but BigPond Internet clients will have unmetered access.
New LG flatscreens will be able to access BigPond Movies and other content, delivered via the company's Netcast technology. Movies will be charged on a pay-per-view basis and can be played anytime within seven days, and then as many times as desired within a 24-hour or 48-hour viewing window. Because the TVs currently lack onboard storage, customers won't be able to download content to own.
BigPond's TV service will evolve over time to provide a range of IPTV to LG TVs including linear channels and more VoD services, LG said.
The Australian IPTV market has been heating up with new CE manufacturers hooking up with partners to make services more ubiquitous. Sony has been aggressively moving into the market, with its PlayStation PlayTV partnering with ABC's iView and Sony giving its Bravia TV owners access to Seven Network's online content and some catch-up episodes through Yahoo!7.
“We look forward to expanding our relationship in the coming months to make the most of BigPond TV’s emerging business through LG devices, said LG Australia managing director William Cho. “This is just the first step in bringing video to households over the Internet directly to TVs. No subscription, no PC required."
- see this press release
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