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How to Provide Multi-Screen Service for Cable Subscribers in Taiwan

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Introduction

Taiwan has comprehensively carried out the popularization of digital television since 2012. Shi Xin Cable Television, one of the independently-operated cable television systems, has actively carried out the 100% comprehensive digital project and hoped to realize the expansion of business through multi-screen service. Eventually, Shi Xin becomes one of the cable networks that realize rapid comprehension digitization in Taiwan by introducing STB-9832C, HD set-top box project of Inspur which enables Shi Xin to realize and benefit from the multi-screen service without changing its existing platform management.

Taiwan Carrying Out 100% Comprehensive Digital Television

Taiwan Shi Xin Cable Television is located in Jia Yi district that at the foot hill of A Li Mountain. As an influential independently-operated cable television system, Shi Xin has provided cable television and online service for residents in Jia Yi and A Li.

Pushed by every field, the digital television market of Taiwan has strived to provide HD digital television since 2012. It closed the wireless TV analogue signal on June 30, 2012, and launched digital TV on July. According to the arrangement of NCC, the dealer of the cable television system should be cooperative. And their goal is to realize comprehensive digitization in 2014 to provide HD digital enjoyment for subscribers.

Under the influence of popularization of digitization, the competition between dealers in the field of TV network service has becoming fiercer. In Taiwan, there are about one hundred dealers providing cable TV service. As a result, in order to keep its leading role in this field, Shi Xin, located in Jia Yi, has started to popularize 100% comprehensive digitization.

The Introduction of Multi-Screen Service Is the Key for Development

Since its operation, Shi Xin Cable Television has followed its operative principle, which is “Leading and Innovative.” And the meaning expressed by “Shi Xin” is “Strive to do the best, and the idea will always by innovative in the world.” It is fully acknowledged by Shi Xin that the more advanced the technology, the more longing the users will be for information. The digital set-top box, combining with audible and visual images, will be a daily necessity for each modern human.

Although Shi Xin has benefited from its efficiency in popularization the digital TV, the overall situation is still facing fierce challenge because of the competition triggered by OTT and IPTV. According to the statistics provided by NCC, in 2013, the number of TV subscribers in Taiwan is 7 million, a little drop in number compared with last year. While looking at the service provided by IPTV, the number of subscribers has increased by 31%, compared with last year, with more than 1.1 million subscribers. In addition, the charming of OTT, providing services, like media sharing and multiple interactive applications, has rocked the market of TV service in Taiwan.

Meanwhile, since customers are getting used to getting and sharing video at any time and any place, in order to provide sufficient service for the existing subscribers in the future, Shi Xin has carried out a thorough investigation as for how to expand business. After a long-term interview and analysis, Shi Xin Cable TV network concluded that they should launch multi-screen service on the basis of the existing cable TV service, which will be an effective solution faced with competitions of the market.

However, most dealers’ solution of launching multi-screen service is to investigate into the transformation of the digital front platform. The problem is that there are so many differences in technological lines. As a result, there would be only one possibility, which is today you investigate in digital TV platform, and tomorrow it will be outdated. On the other hand, the direct transformation of the front platform may not only be a waste of money and resource, but also influencing the function of the existing digital set-top box. These are the reasons that after a long time analogy and analysis, Shi Xin still has difficulty in finding a satisfying and effective solution.

Is it possible to start from the transformation of the terminal instead of the front?

Consequently, in the coming 2013, Shi Xin has spent a whole year in seeking for a solution for multi-screen service at the terminal instead of undergoing a massive transformation of the front, which will not only provide sufficient service for the existing customers, but also gain strength in competing with OTT and IPTV.

To Realize Multi-Screen without Transformation of the System?

In the seminar of the ICTC Cable Transmission and Coverage held in Hang Zhou in October 2013, Shi Xin Cable TV Network showed great interest in STB-9832C, a HD set-top box shown by Inspur. The chief executive of Shi Xin Cable TV Network, Wang Guohui said, “This product of Inspur is exactly what we have been looking for.”

STB-9832C, hardwired with HD dual-core decoding chip, can support Full Band Tuner and three-way demodulation. It also provides HD picture in picture, swiftness in changing channels.

Through the hardware of the platform of set-top box and software of middleware of Inspur, the dealers can provide multi-screen service for subscribers with only home digital set-top box. Different mobile terminal can enjoy multi-screen TV service by using this only one digital set-top box. In addition, this set-top box also combines with Full Band Tuner, which enables users to change channels in ms, improving the shortcoming in changing channels of traditional digital TV. Through this experience, the dealers’ soft competitiveness has been greatly improved.

At the same time, the multi-screen interactive solution provided by Shi Xin Cable is designed for the mobile experience, which enables users to enjoy HD at anytime anyplace, thus creating a three-dimensional, comprehensive, and multi-functional multi-media center. Based on this, the multi-layer in-depth interaction between multi-screen terminal and TV terminal will be realized, thus popularizing the service provided by the broadcasting and television network to the home of the users.

Create a Service-Experience-Profit Multi-Win Situation

Shi Xin Cable TV signed cooperative agreement with Inspur on its product STB-9832C in January 2014. By using the product and plan of Inspur, Shi Xin has gradually realizing its goal of comprehensive digitization and becoming one of the cable networks that realize full digitization at the fastest speed by providing users with multi-screen service, getting benefits, and improving willingness of terminal buyers. And because of installment of payment, there is an increasing number of users starting to enjoy high quality service provided by HD digitization and multi-screen technology.

First, pushed by HD popularization and multi-screen service, the proportion of users of digital TV in Jia Yi has increased from 60% in 2013 to 90% at present. Except for expanding business, Shi Xin, at the same time, has provided two way broadband networks. Wang Guohui, the chief executive of Shi Xin Cable TV pointed out, “Judging from the current situation, we are fully confident in challenging the full digitization in the coming 2015.”

Second, the realization of multi-screen interaction enables users to watch different live TV programs through different mobile terminal and to get and share video at anytime anywhere. Except for improving users' viewing experience, the introduction of multi-screen has made it possible for operators to gain benefits. The operators can charge for the second or the third mobile terminal according to its own need.

Third, PVR video recording, as one light-spot of 9832 products, enables users to take record of exciting games and TV shows so that they can watch it for many times. Considering the slightly weak current situation of the two-way network of Taiwan cable TV, the PVR service can directly improve the two-way service of Shi Xin, avoid the construction of the back-end server, and largely cut the expense on the construction and maintenance of two-way platform.

Pushed by the product technology, the development of digital TV will move forward to the diversity and internalization of media by carrying on more colorful multimedia service and breaking through regional media. Consequently, actively expanding new market and developing media and digital related industries are future directions of development of Shi Xin Cable TV and the entire cable industry in Taiwan. Combining the characteristics of cable television and aiming at the future development, Wang Guohui, chief executive of Shi Xin said, “We’ll continue our cooperation with enterprises like Inspur to create a blueprint for the digitization of cable TV and to embrace a new world for media.”

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