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BesTV joins Orange to develop IPTV

BESTV New Media, a subsidiary of SMG, signed an agreement with Orange today to cooperate on the development of IPTV (Internet protocol TV) and other network convergence technologies.

It was the latest development in the convergence of computers, TV and mobile phones after China's premier Wen Jiabao said on Wednesday the nation will accelerate the technology.

According to the memorandum of understanding signed yesterday in Shanghai, Orange will broadcast content of the Shanghai World Expo, provided by BesTV, across its European footprint. Both sides will cooperate on IPTV through technology and capital.

"The fast pace of technical changes is rapidly changing the way we watch TV," said Didier Lombard, Orange's chairman and chief executive. "The partnership aims to investigate the ways in which media and telecom companies can harness the potential of modern technologies to provide users simple homogeneous interfaces and rich, interactive content."

Through the three-screen technology, subscribers can watch they want, when they want and whatever they want, said Li Ruigang, president of Shanghai Media Group, the parent firm of BesTV.

On Wednesday, China released a statement to encourage cross-industry operations among telecommunications, broadcast and Internet sectors. The country aims to promote full network convergence by 2015.

Shanghai's IPTV user base has surpassed 1 million, which makes the city top in the world. SMG provides content for the services and China Telecom's Shanghai branch operates the network. Nationwide, SMG has 3 million IPTV users.


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