Asia launches enhanced TV

Enhanced TV Technologies has unveiled plans to launch Asia's first enhanced television service.

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By  Marcus Webb Published  July 16, 2002

Enhanced TV Technologies has unveiled plans to launch Asia's first enhanced television service.

Due to make its debut in Malaysia this month, eTV Malaysia will combine television with the Internet. Its content and services will include synchronised TV (viewing TV program and Internet content at the same time), interactive TV and Internet access.

Other services will include TV mail, TV Messaging (SMS), TV Chat, low cost international phone services using VoIP telephony, transactions and interactive advertising.

"At the touch of a button on the eTV remote control or wireless keyboard, consumers will have access to a range of on-demand eTV channels," Says Rannie Tay, Operations Director, eTV Malaysia.

Employing a subscriber service model, the company is targeting an initial subscriber base of 35,000 by the end of this year, with a 65:35 ratio between corporate-sponsored and retail consumers. It is optimistic of reaching 150,000 subscribers in Malaysia by the third quarter of 2003.

"We hope to reach 28 per cent of households in Malaysia, with 1.2 million subscribers and 3.6 million eTV users by 2005. We believe this is achievable as TV penetration in Malaysian homes is 98 per cent," says Tay.

The service will initially be offered primarily via a 56K dial-up connection, and through ADSL and broadband networks where available. Dial-up subscribers will be upgraded to ADSL and broadband upon market availability at no extra cost.

Continuous equipment upgrades will ensure eTV subscribers are constantly up-to-date with new technologies. eTV Malaysia will offer a low one-off joining fee and fixed monthly subscription for retail subscribers which includes multimedia eTV Media Player (set-top-box), eTV remote control, eTV wireless keyboard, an ISP account with up to five supplementary e-mail accounts and Internet access.

In addition, there will also be access to eTV web channels and applications, eTV's T-CASH credit line for online shopping and bill payments services, and an international telephone account using VoIP for substantial user pricing savings

CMT, eTV Malaysia's holding company, intends to roll out eTV progressively in New Zealand, Japan, Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand within the next two years.

eTV Malaysia is a wholly owned subsidiary of CSE Multimedia Technologies Sdn Bhd, an MSC-status company.

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