ASTRO, TIME to combine TV and broadband in Malaysia

Tuesday, December 21st, 2010 
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KUALA LUMPUR — Astro Malaysia and TIME dotCom Berhad (TIME) have entered into a partnership to jointly bring the best of TV and broadband services for the benefit of customers.

CEO of Astro, Dato’ Rohana Rozhan and CEO of TIME, Afzal Abdul Rahim today announced the partnership between two of Malaysia’s most recognizable brands in leveraging on each others’ strengths to bring true digital connectivity and an enhanced entertainment experience for customers.

Rohana said, “Since the launch of Astro B.yond in December 2009, we have received huge demand for our High Definition (HD) and Personal Video Recording (PVR) services. Our Astro B.yond services are immediately available to all customers residing in single dwelling units (SDU’s) and progressively for those in multiple dwelling units (MDU’s). Over the last 6 months we have been conducting IP delivery trials, with very positive outcomes. TIME is a partner of choice given their immediate capability to provide 100Mbps to these MDUs, which enables us to deliver an unrivalled value proposition encompassing the very best of Astro B.yond and high speed broadband services, to our increasingly discerning customers. Under this agreement, these services will be made available to 167,000 homes in 730 MDU’s in the Klang Valley and Penang progressively within the next 12 months.”

All this is made possible as the Astro B.yond box is in essence a ‘tri-brid’ set top box, which operates in a Direct to Home (DTH) satellite mode, pure IPTV mode as well as DTH and IPTV hybrid mode. Astro’s ‘tri-brid’ set top box also enables different Video-On-Demand (VOD) capabilities such as push, pull, or progressive downloads of content, based on the mode selected and relative speed of the underlying network. Customers are then able to view videos in real-time upon request, or alternatively, download video content to a device such as a PVR for later viewing.

Astro customers who sign up for the Astro IPTV service under this agreement with TIME will therefore have 100Mbps bandwidth at their disposal, to enjoy all Astro B.yond services such as HD, PVR, VOD in multi-rooms, and still have spare bandwidth to support connected devices such as laptops, mobile phones and game consoles on WIFI.

According to TIME CEO, Afzal Abdul Rahim, this collaboration marks a significant moment in bringing multimedia and Internet rich services to Malaysian homes. “TIME’s 100% fibre-based network is the most resilient and stable network in the country that is able to support Astro’s IPTV offering. TIME’s fibre connections run directly into homes, ensuring consistent speeds that are required for IPTV delivery as well as uncompromised Internet quality. This also allows Astro customers to experience the fastest broadband in Malaysia. Our roll-out to homes in the past year has been aggressive and we will continue to keep up the pace in supporting Astro’s IPTV plans. ”

This partnership between Astro TV and TIME enables Astro to provide its customers the best value possible – with the unbeatable combination of TV, HD, PVR, VOD, Music and high speed broadband. With this proposition, customers in Malaysia can truly expect a transformation of their TV viewing and the home internet usage experience, enjoying the best of a converging world.

Astro is committed to bring this unparalleled value proposition for the benefit of a wider base of its customers in the very near future.