Football fans in Singapore who do not want to get an additional cable-TV STB may have to carry on hoping. Cable operator StarHub has said that if IPTV operator SingTel accepts its proposal to carry SingTel's pay-TV content, the single box solution can be ready for tests within two months of starting the technical work. However, SingTel said this it has yet to receive any formal communication from StarHub regarding its proposal.

StarHub told Channel NewsAsia that if enough consumers were interested, it was willing to offer to carry SingTel's branded BPL (Barclays Premier League) channel and ESS (ESPN Star Sports) channels on the StarHub TV network.

"In other words, SingTel can maintain the billing relationship directly with its customer for BPL and ESS channels while StarHub delivers the channels to customers who choose to access that content over a StarHub set-top device".

SingTel won the bid to carry the English Premier League for three seasons starting 2010 on its SingTel mio TV after out-bidding rival StarHub. The move prompted concerns that football fans will have to sign up for two plans and two set-top boxes.

"The first time we heard about the offer was... in the papers, so I suppose we will have to wait and see when we (will) get the proposal from StarHub," said Chua Sock Koong, chief executive officer of SingTel.

Responding to SingTel's comments, StarHub said it will pitch its idea to SingTel formally soon, but did not specify a date.