Swiss telecommunications company TalkEasy has launched an OTT subscription TV package for broadband households in Germany, which they can access on their TV set using any internet service provider of their choice.
The precondition is an internet data rate of at least 5Mbps. The basic package which costs €14.95 per month contains more than 70 TV channels including ARD, ZDF, RTL, Sat.1, ProSieben and other public and commercial channels. Interesting: The line-up comprises Austrian domestic TV channels ORF 1 and ORF 2 which are encrypted on satellite to restrict reception to Austria for legal reasons.
Additionally, 16 pay-TV packages with foreign-language channels can be subscribed to for €7.99 per month each. The proposition includes, for example, Arabic, Asian, English, French, Italian, Eastern Europe, Portuguese, Spanish and Turkish. An interesting detail for fans of British television: The two packages with English-language TV channels include the domestic TV channels from UK broadcasters BBC, ITV and Channel 4. TalkEasy’s foreign-language bouquets also contain the domestic TV channels from France, Italy, Turkey and other countries.
In contrast to other OTT providers in Germany such as Zattoo and Magine TV which are not tied to hardware, specific reception devices are required for TalkEasy: Customers can choose between the set-top-box Dune TV-102W and HDMI stick Dune HD Connect. The box is connected via HDMI, AV or Scart cable to the TV set while the stick is directly plugged into the TV set’s HDMT slot. Internet connection is through Wi-Fi or an Ethernet network cable.
Though the USB slot, an external hard-drive or a USB stick can be connected to both the box and the stick. If viewers have hooked up an external storage device, they can pause the live TV programmes and continue watching them at a later stage. In addition to live TV, the box and the stick can also be used to access personal videos, music and photos. With the reception hardware, viewers can also access interactive multimedia services in the HbbTV standard, use an EPG and surf the net on their TV screen through the integrated web browser.
The box and the stick can each be bought for €129 or rented for €9.95 per month (after 18 months rental time, the hardware becomes the customer’s property). Customers also have to pay a monthly service fee of €2.50. Thus, customers who rent the hardware, pay a total of €27.40 per month in the first 18 months. If the hardware is bought instead, the monthly fee amounts to €17.45.
As the TV package is not tied to an internet service provider, customers can take it with them when moving house or take it to their friends. The TV package and the hardware can be ordered on TalkEasy’s website, the first 6 months are free of charge. The activation fee costs €19; the shipping of the hardware costs €15. The minimum contract period is 18 months.