A telco's plea: leave something for us

Robert Clark
27 Oct 2010


The annual Casbaa confab got cracking in Hong Kong yesterday, where the good and the great of Asian pay TV came together to canvass the big issues and flog the odd SpongeBob series.


But the event tagline, “Unlock Your Networks” raised some eyebrows, not least from the telecom side. 


One telco CEO gave a puzzled laugh when I asked him about it. Memo Casbaa: Telco networks are locked or unlocked according to the law.


Perhaps Casbaa was referring to Singapore, where pay TV content is extremely unlocked.


The organization didn’t elaborate, except to refer in its bumpf to unlocking “vast pay-TV potential across Asia.”


In any case, PCCW’s Janice Lee put in a word for the outnumbered telco guys.


“Leave some motivation for the operators,” she pleaded in a panel session on the conference topic. All the new streaming and fat file downloads were “soaking up a lot of network resources,” and content providers needed to leave something on the table to encourage telcos to invest.


In the news of the day Casbaa revealed that more than half of Asian TV households now subscribe to pay TV – that’s just under 363 million homes, making this the world’s biggest pay TV region.


Casbaa declared this was a “tipping point” – but didn’t explain that, either.



Robert Clark

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