Microsoft gets bumped by Alca-Lu and Telefonica

It is slightly old news but Microsoft's grip on the big European IPTV market is waning with Telecom Italia ditching Mediaroom in favor of Alcatel-Lucent's Spanish-developed middleware MiViewTV platform.

The MiViewTV platform was first developed in-house at Spain's Telefonica, a controlling shareholder of Telecom Italia. Then U.S.-based Lucent agreed to take over development and marketing of the platform in 2006 and to be Telefonica network integrator partner for its various IPTV plays. Alcatel and Lucent subsequently merged and worked with Telefonica to deploy the technology in each of Telefonica's IPTV plays. Aside from Spain these include Brazil, Chile, the Czech Republic and now Italy.

According to Light Reading Microsoft had been working for several years with the Italian incumbent as it prepared for deployment of its Alice Home IPTV service. But when Telefonica took control last year of the Italian incumbent it decided to harmonize with its other IPTV plays and Microsoft's technology  was left in the labs.

Recently the French incumbent Orange announced it was sponsoring an alliance to develop and deploy a standardized middleware platform for all carriers to use. The move was seen as an attempt to stop Microsoft dominating the IPTV delivery. Many agree the middleware platform will be the key service platform for the expected suite of next generation broadband services.

At the IPTV world forum last week Japan electronics giant NEC showcased its new end-to-end IPTV platform and video delivery system for carriers using an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) architecture. The platform will work in conjunction with NEC's video-on-demand server. NEC is initially targeting IMS carriers, mostly in Asia where IMS is better accepted than in the U.S.

For more:
- Italians snub Microsoft Article
- NEC announces IPTV platform Release
- Alcatel-Lucent and NEC recently inked a joint development LTE deal Release 

Related articles:
Telefonica and Telecom Italia are featured in our special review of the European IPTV market
French Challenge for Mediaroom Article