Monday, December 31, 2007

Korean Bill Enables IPTV

The Korea legislature passed a law allowing telecom companies to offer IPTV services over their broadband networks. Korea Telecom, Hanaro Telecom and LG Dacom have provided video on demand services through their Mega TV, Hana TV, and My LG TV services, respectively, without relevant laws. These services offer TV programs several hours or days after terrestrial broadcasters have first broadcast them. The new law means these programs can be broadcast over IPTV services live.

Korea Telecom will not be required to spin off its IPTV business. The country’s broadcasting sector had demanded that Korea Telecom spin off its IPTV unit on concerns that the firm is expanding its monopolistic position into the IPTV market.

It appears that the regulatory issues that have plagued the Korean IPTV market have been resolved by this new law. Hopefully the dueling regulatory bodies in the government that have held it back will now cooperate to create a strong IPTV industry in Korea.

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