The internet service provider (ISP) TalkTalk will offer its customers Netgem TV – Netgem’s Content-as-a-Service model for fibre ISPs – as part of its coming 4K TV service. While Netgem TV has previously been offered as part of a Pay TV service for other fibre ISPs, TalkTalk represents its largest partner to date, with the company providing broadband to 4.2 million users across the UK. Netgem – a Pay TV solutions company – has said that the platform allows a fast time to market for ISPs and offers a frictionless “end-to-end” operating model.
Mathias Hautefort, CEO of Netgem said: “Thanks to our fully operated Netgem TV platform already market-tested with several operators in Britain in particular, and our expertise for running agreements with the main TV channels and the rising number of OTT content providers, we intend to continue to expand our Content-as-a-Service model with Tier 1 operators”.
It is expected that some Pay TV operators will look to outsource their content curation/packaging over time. This deal opens the way for such a strategy if TalkTalk chose to pursue it.
Previously, TalkTalk offered TV Boosts – bundles of channels or on demand services that customers could add to their TalkTalk TV packages – delivered through the YouView set-top box. However, new Boosts stopped becoming available for purchase in November 2020, and TalkTalk seemingly has sought to phase Boosts out, with customers who change their package losing access to the content, and Boosts being unavailable as a product for new customers. The ISP instead introduced discounted NOW TV passes, coupled with a basic £4 per month YouView box, to provide viewers with Freeview channels.
A TalkTalk spokesperson has clarified that the contract with Netgem does not represent the severing of its current ties to YouView:
“As with everything we do, we are always looking to give our customers the best TV experience in the market. We are pleased to be developing new products with Netgem at the same time as our maintaining our relationship with our strategic partner YouView as we continue to develop our TV proposition”
To date, Netgem TV has been a CaaS solution for fibre ISPs specifically. It has yet to be revealed if the new service will be limited to customers who are subscribed to TalkTalk’s ultrafast fibre broadband package.