Spain - abertis and Microsoft to offer digital terrestrial TV via the internet

Thursday, April 19th, 2007 

Agreement between abertis telecom and Microsoft to offer digital terrestrial television via the internet

BARCELONA — abertis telecom, the abertis group telecommunications infrastructure operator, and Microsoft have signed a collaboration agreement to work together to develop Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) via the Internet.

This collaboration between abertis telecom and Microsoft focuses on the TDT.COM project, covering the evaluation and validation of the architecture and service platforms required to support the broadcasting of audiovisual content over the Internet with the experience of accessing live content.

Given the peculiarities of the Internet as an additional vehicle for the distribution of DTT, TDT.COM is a model of convergence for both distribution models (the Internet and television), which will allow viewers to see on the Internet the same content that is broadcast on TV, opening up the way for possible collaborations between broadcasters and institutions. It will also make possible the availability of television archives on a pay-per-view basis via the Internet, and also the storage of all programmes to see them as one would at a video library.

Technological collaboration

Microsoft, as the main supplier of technology for the service infrastructure and for the development of the client application, will design together with abertis telecom the technological infrastructure to make all this come true. Specifically, it shall design the access platforms and the visual presentation format on the new Windows Vista and Windows XP operating systems using Windows Presentation Foundation as the latest-generation graphic interface. It shall also provide content protection tools for those authors, producers and publishers that require protection of their copyright and who wish to charge for their content.

abertis telecom’s participation is based on the provision of the infrastructure for the management and distribution of audiovisual content with Microsoft Windows Media, and it shall be responsible for content protection security with Windows Media DRM and the insertion of associated metadata to allow users to discover this new vision of DTT.

According to Francisco Monteverde, Microsoft Ibérica Director of Telecommunications and Media, “the agreement with abertis telecom allows us to help the Spanish audiovisual industry to enrich to the full end users’ experience of their services, converging DTT technologies with the Internet and enabling content providers to enjoy more direct relationship with viewers. It is a step forward in our vision of the digital home for the Spanish market”.

For his part, Carlos Espinós, Deputy Director General of abertis telecom, noted that “this strategic agreement with Microsoft allows our company to continue innovating in audiovisual content distribution platforms, so that we will always be able to provide access to our customers’ content in new broadcast formats”.