IBC 2017: J:COM Taps Ericsson for New Multiscreen Service

J:COM, Japan’s largest cable operator, has tapped Ericsson for a next-gen, multiscreen TV service that will utilize Ericsson’s cloud-powered MediaFirst platform.

J:COM’s new offering, to become available to about 3.7 million subscribers, will also feature hybrid set-tops that use the Reference Design Kit (RDK), a preintegrated software stack that’s managed by a joint venture of Comcast, Liberty Global and Charter Communications (coming way of Charter’s acquisition of Time Warner Cable).

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In addition to providing personalization features and a cloud-based interface, the new platform will also support Ultra HD content, they said.

Ericsson, which announced the deal ahead of this week’s IBC show in Amsterdam, said the basic design phase for J:COM’s new offering will get underway in Q4 2017.

The deal marks a significant win for Ericsson’s MediaFirst platform, which is also being used by Canada’s Telus for a new IPTV service called Pik TV that runs on smartphones, tablets and an Android TV-powered set-top.

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“Consumers have more choice than ever before and it is therefore imperative that we stand out from the crowd to remain competitive in an ever-cluttered TV landscape, Hirohiko Imura president of J:COM, said in a statement. “We believe that a seamless and personalized TV Everywhere service will enable J:COM to create that distinction. By deploying Ericsson MediaFirst TV Platform, we will have access to a range of uniquely intelligent, high performance solutions that will help us to transform our television offering and strengthen our position at the forefront of TV innovation.”