The Board of Telecom Italia has cancelled the supply agreement with Telecom Italia Media, putting a question mark on the future of the IPTV service and, especially, the Cubovision business model.
Under the terms of the 2007 agreement, Telecom Italia was responsible for “the conception, designing of schedules, research and purchase of Media Content” for use on different online TV platforms. The operator said it would now move from a traditional broadband TV to an on-demand content platform.
Cubovision has a troubled history, with Telecom Italia trying to revive the fortunes of the IPTV service several times by investing significant funds, proposing a new hardware platform, and by signing multimedia content agreements.
The change of strategy is not only due to the lack of interest in IPTV in general or the lack of an adequate fibre network infrastructure nationwide, more important is fierce competition from Mediaset and Sky, with their respective pay-TV platforms (DTT and DTH), has virtually monopolised the market.
On Wednesday 5th October, Telecom Italia issued the following statement to Advanced-Television: “The process of bringing all the editorial activities connected with the management platform of Cubovision content together under the control of the parent company confirms the determination of Telecom Italia to develop services for the supply and utilisation of digital contents with the adoption of the new model of broadband TV, focusing on services on demand, catch-up TV and UGC.
A further stage thus opens in the way of Cubovision project, based on the multi-platform supply through avant-garde interfaces and systems of content and services with high value added, in which Telecom Italia will continue to invest in a perspective of development and with a view to full customer satisfaction in keeping with the Group’s innovation-oriented mission. Telecom Italia thus continues to expand the supply of content on demand with films, TV series, children’s programmes and documentaries by outstanding directors on its IP platforms with 25 channels available to subscribers.”