Amsterdam: Companies which provide television over Internet technology (IPTV) joined forces on 19 March to set a single global standard, so that all systems would work together.
The Open IPTV Forum is backed by companies including Ericsson, Matsushita’s Panasonic, Philips, Samsung Electronics, Siemens AG Sony Corp, AT&T, Telecom Italia and France Telecom.
Not on the starting list are Alcatel-Lucent and Microsoft Corp, the market leaders and alliance partners in IPTV networks and software.
Film makers and TV production companies were not on the list either, but the forum said everyone could join.
“The forum will be open for participation to any companies, which share the goals of the forum and are willing to actively contribute to specification development,” the Open IPTV Forum said.
The nine founding companies said they want results fast and will hammer out technology requirements by September and a first set of technology specifications by year-end.
If all IPTV systems work together flawlessly, it would be easier and cheaper for consumers to buy and use IPTV systems and services.
For technology companies and operators it will be cheaper to build systems, because they can be made for a global market.
The forum will embrace existing standards that address part of the inter-operability challenge.
It said it supported the work of IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) for unified Internet service delivery and the Digital Living Network Alliance (DLNA) that aims to make it easy for consumers to use their digital music, films and other content across their home or private network.
Most of the nine companies are already active in one or more of these other standards-setting bodies.