Sunday, June 7, 2009

Airtel Digital TV & ESPN to launch new channel

Sunil Mittal-led DTH firm Airtel Digital TV has partnered with sport channel ESPN to launch an interactive channel 'iSports' on its platform with an aim to garner more viewers for the ongoing ICC Twenty20 Worldcup. Going ahead, Airtel will also introduce more than six interactive channels on its platform this year. “These channels (interactive) will serve as the differentiating factor for us from not just cable TV services but also other DTH players...We plan to l aunch more than half a dozen such channels this year,” Bharti Airtel Director and Chief Executive Officer (DTH) Mr Ajai Puri said. The company is looking at education and business as potential subjects for the channel, he added.

Airtel has recently added 'iSports' to its offering and has partnered with ESPN for content. The channel will provide highlights, match updates, schedule, trivia and statistics about cricket on iSports. “iSports has been launched in line with the World Cup T20. Cricket fans can watch matches as well as get other information on this platform,” he said, adding that the company is offering the sports bouquet at Rs 60 (plus taxes) for three months as compar ed to Rs 45 (plus taxes) charged earlier. At present, Airtel offers nine interactive channels, including iShop, iPizza, iMatinee, iTravel and iCity. Mr Puri declined to comment on the subscriber base and the targeted volume.


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