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BT Plays Down Broadband TV

Posted: 13th Jul, 2004 By: MarkJ
No surprise to find that a spokesman for BT has played down yesterdays news regarding BT's broadband broadcasting ambitions, stating that "it's still early days," and "we're not planning to compete with broadcasters.".

Interestingly one of our readers, who claims to be involved with a trial of said service on NTL's network (cable?), has spoken a little about the experience.

Now we can't vouch for any of this information, so take it with the biggest pinch of salt possible and hold in mind the fact that BT has not decided anything final. It may not even be the same system, but it does seem related:

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A number of NTL subscribers (myself being one) have been recruited to beta test this delivery system using a downloaded app which seems tied to Windows Media Player.

The application allows me to browse, select and download from a couple of weeks worth of BBC content. There is not currently a huge choice each day, maybe about 10 - 15 shows picked from the various BBC TV and radio channels. I can also only download stuff AFTER it has been broadcast in the traditional way, no advance access.

Just so you know, I'm not terribly impressed so far. The BBC have included some nasty DRM in the system and the licencing is pretty restrictive. I can only view the content for a few days and then the rights are withdrawn and the file is dead. I don't like this at all. As BBC licence fee payers we are entitled to video record the TV shows we want for a permanent copy, but it seems the BEEB don't (for the moment at least) want to grant us the same freedom with their new system. If their full roll out is to have this kind of sting in the tail, I wont be signing up.

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