From David Del Valle in Madrid
Sogecable, owner of Digital Plus, is breaking into the HDTV launching a High Definition version of its premium pay-TV Canal Plus service. Test trials of Canal Plus Alta Definicion will start in January, with the channel fully operational later on in the year. It is the second company to launch an HDTV service after the Catalan pubcaster TVC.
The announcement comes at a time when Sogecable and Telefonica prepare for the imminent launch of a joint triple play offer, Trio Plus, from the beginning of December, if Competition authorities which have launched a probe into the operation do not stop them. In addition, Sogecable launched last month an iPlus PVR set-top-box, capable of receiving HDTV and DTT signals.
According to Sogecable, 13 per cent of Spanish TV sets are now HD capable, including 21 per cent of sets owned by Digital Plus clients. At the present time, Sogecable has more than 2 million subscribers.