The rise of the IPTV monster continues and the recent news that Openreach is to do the full commercial launch of its GEA Multicast service on 25th November may help to push utilisation of the option.
GEA Multicast allows broadband providers to deliver an IP based TV signal to the handover point for the Openreach fibre network and then have it broadcast to all the customers who want to receive the stream. As such this helps operators provide a TV service using less bandwidth to the handover exchange and for Openreach reduces the bandwidth used on the fibre that runs from the exchanges to the thousands of street cabinets.
While so far streams over BT TV have only utilised SD and HD resolutions, multicast bandwidth savings may mean that 3D and ultra HDTV start to emerge, and with Sky yet to offer a retail UHDTV service it could give IPTV based solutions a unique selling point.
BT Wholesale on its WBC ADSL2+ network also supports multicast, but with lower speeds and smaller numbers of channels and is unlikely to offer an ultra HDTV service.