By Stuart Thomson
Vodafone Spain has become the latest operator to strike a deal to provide its TV service via smart TV, in this case with Xiaomi.
The operator said that the agreement would allow its customers to view TV on new platforms and that the objective was to increase the range of devices that subscribers could use to access the service outside the traditional set-top box.
Users of Xiaomi smart TVs with Android TV will be able to view Vodafone TV via an app. Current compatible models that are available in Spain are the mi TV 4A 32-inch model, the Mi TV 4S 43-inch TV and the Mi TV 4S 55-inch model.
The move extends the range of smart TVs over which Vodafone TV is available. The operator already provides its services via Samsung, Sony and Philips smart TVs as well as via mobile and tablet, PC and Chromecast.
The move illustrates the growing popularity of box-free options to distribute TV services by operators. Rival Spanish operatorTelefónica last week revealed that two million homes that took its service used smart TVsto do while a large number used HDMI-connected devices other than an operator-supplied set-top box.
In France meanwhile, rival players SFR and Bouygues Telecom last week separately launched box-free TV offerswith TV services available from smart TV apps.
Bouygues Telecom’s BBox Smart TV offering is part of a triple-play package that provides TV access via a B.TV+ app pre-installed exclusively on Samsung smart TVs. Altice France/SFR meanwhile launched its own Samsung smart TV app-based offering, with the smart TV itself offered on a hire purchase basis for the duration of the 24-month contract. https://www.digitaltveurope.com