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Tuesday, 13 October 2009 09:47

iiNet IPTV on track for Q1 2010 launch

iiNet has installed Juniper Networks' MX series routers in all capital cities to, amongst other things, better enable it to deliver video to its broadband customers, in particular its planned IPTV service which is on track for commercial launch in Q1 of 2010.

iiNet is installing multiple Juniper's MX range of routers in its metro-network exchanges across all capital cities. These will be interconnected with iiNet's dark fibre and will increase capacity in some parts of the network from 1Gbps to 10Gbps. The Sydney and Brisbane metro rings are already live and Melbourne is due to be completed in the next few weeks.

iiNet CTO Greg Bader told iTWire that the upgrade would also give a new degree of resilience to the network. "We will have redundant rings in each capital city so if one fibre link fails traffic will reroute around other parts of the network."

On iiNet's plans for IPTV the planned IPTV service - first unveiled a the company's November 2008 AGM  - Bader said "our hope is still to have customers on trial by Christmas and a launch in Q1." He said triallists would likely be obtained by a mixture of invitation and specific selection. "I am sure Whirlpool will get a mention, and in a few weeks time we will start to select participants. We will want them in certain areas and with certain capabilities such as having a BOB [iiNet's multifunction CPE] or being on one of our own DSLAMs. We will take their feedback and hopefully it will have an impact on what the final product looks like in Q1."

Bader said that the Juniper routers had been chosen primarily to enable the company to distribute traffic over its own network closer to its DSLAMs. "This solution is primarily to support customers on our own DSLAMs and it is a more robust efficient and flexible way of getting content closer to those DSLAMs. With Telstra Wholesale we jus have to hand traffic of to Telstra and they handle it so offering IPTV with any sort of QoS is a real challenge...To get linear content economically distributed, multicasting is the only way to go and unfortunately that restricts us to our own network rather than the Telstra Wholesale network."

He added: "One of the key decisions around the Juniper product was its flexibility. In the short to medium term we have a very fixed plan as to what we need to deliver but we also need to be able to change direction one, two or three years out. So having a product with inherent flexibility that allows us to do things in different ways was important to us."

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