Fri, Sep 21, 2012 - Page 13 News List

Chunghwa Telecom to offer YouTube service

Staff writer, with CNA

Google Inc’s video Web site YouTube will soon be available on a digital television service offered by Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), the nation’s largest telecom operator said on Tuesday.

The content is to be introduced under an agreement signed last month with Google to give the carrier access to YouTube’s application programming interface (API) and authorized content, Chunghwa said.

An API is a set of tools for building software applications.

Chang Yi-fong (張義豐), vice president of Chunghwa’s northern business group, said subscribers to the company’s multimedia-on-demand (MOD) service will be able to watch YouTube on their TVs through an upgraded user interface from next month.

The number of subscribers to the company’s MOD service, which was launched in 2005, exceeded 1 million last year, with revenue averaging NT$157 per user, Chunghwa said.

Boasting high-definition sports broadcasting and films, the MOD service had 1.16 million subscribers as of last month and the number is expected to rise to 1.3 million by the end of this year, according to Chunghwa.

About 150,000 subscribers are using a new version of the MOD platform on which the YouTube application will be installed, the company said.

Chunghwa plans to shift most of its MOD subscribers from the old platform to the new one, but it needs time to upgrade existing set-up boxes for digital signal transmission, Chang said.

According to YouTube, over 800 million users visit the site each month and over 4 billion videos are viewed per day.

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