In its first report on the state of the IPTV market in the country, the Italian IPTV Association, which brings together Telecom Italia, Fastweb and Wind, claims there are currently 700,000 subscribers.
However, the expansion of the service has been affected by an “excessive rigidity” on the TV rights issue and the legislative framework which is more geared towards “traditional media”. “Operators still have great difficulty accessing quality TV content, in which they invest E30 million per year, in addition to more substantial investments to ensure the deployment of broadband services,” says the Association.
Among possible solutions the association highlights the importance of establishing “extended collective licensing for the retransmission of linear channels” and the need to ensure that “development is not hindered by lack of rights offered”, which produces adverse effects on competition.
As a result of the dissemination of audiovisual services on IP and the advent of Smart TV offers, the study suggests that the number of customers could grow significantly, as is the case in more advanced countries. The association points out that, at the end of 2010, already 5 per cent of Italian households were equipped with TV sets, blu-ray and game consoles that are connected to the internet, enabling the reception of services and content transmitted via IP platforms.