China is speeding up its process to integrate internet, broadcast TV and telecoms networks by selecting 42 cities for the second phase of its long-anticipated three-network convergence plan.
The State Council has enlisted Tianjin and Chongqing, as well as 22 provincial capitals and 17 other major cities to conduct the three-network convergence trial, according to mainland media CCID.com.
The trials are expected to run through 2012, with full implementation targeted for end-2015, potentially creating new business opportunities for various sectors, including HDTV set-top boxes, digital TV decoder cards and the BOSS (broadband operations software solutions) modular software system.
The Chinese government announced its network and industry convergence plan in 2010, and selected 12 cities to conduct trials in the first phase of the project, which ran from June 2010 through July 2011.
The government said the first phase has achieved “substantial” progress and the networks are capable of offering services to end users.
Separately, the State Council also announced plans to accelerate the deployment of an IPv6 network in the next few years, according to the official Xinhua news agency.
China, which has the world’s largest internet population with over 485 million users, aims to put the IPv6-based network into small-scale commercial pilot use and form a mature business model by the end of 2013, the news agency reported, citing a statement released by the State Council.
From 2014 to 2015, the country will deploy and commercialize the IPv6-based network on a large scale and achieve interconnection between IPv4 and IPv6-based operations, the statement said.