Canal Digital takes IDTV CAM route

By Julian Clover
October 2, 2009 09.08 UK

Canal Digital has become the latest cable operator to take advantage of the growing number of integrated digital televisions (IDTVs) with a built in cable tuner.

The Norwegian cablenet has begun to issue conditional access modules (CAMs) for a list of 14 approved IDTVs including models from Samsung, Phillips and Sony. A spokesman for Canal Digital told Broadband TV News that the cabler hoped to introduce CI Plus units at some point next year. Canal Digital’s 732,000 cable subscribers across the Nordic region use smart cards supplied by Conax.

Deals have been struck with the majority of Norway’s retail chains, but the company has warned that it can only support CAMs used with its approved receiver list.

In using CAMs, operators can significantly reduce the costs involved in deploying set-top boxes in a region where consumers are used to simply plugging their TV direct into a cable-supplied wall socket, however without CI Plus there is little access to on demand services.

Already the Danish operator YouSee has announced plans to take advantage of the new IDTVs. Numericable has opted for DVB-T modulation because of the significantly higher number of terrestrial IDTVs in the market. Kabel Deutschland will wait until next year to launch a CI Plus-based solution.