Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Latvenergo checking the cable TV market?

Another weird summer rumor. Latvenergo, the Latvian electric utility, has been doing some market research about cable TV in a Riga neighborhood. This according to a source in Poland at the moment (where all kinds of PR, analyst, and even journalist types--not me-- have flocked to the U2 concert). The idea seems to be that Latvenergo would deliver cable to homes, just exactly how is unclear. For new buildings, Latvenergo has probably discreetly offered to run fiber to the building while installing the necessary electrical connections (this kind of bundling has been criticized by the telecoms and internet companies). For older buildings, it isn't clear what the electric utility could do. Internet over powerlines is a possibility, but can the wires carry enougfh bandwidth for TV?
Another possibility is that Latvenergo is offering some kind of carrier capacity deal to the existing cable operators to give them a larger footprint (connecting via Latvenergo's net to areas where they have no fiber or coax or MMDS wireless service). That would also make some kind of sense.
In the US, a cursory Google shows that there are a number of small and medium-sized towns where the local public utility combines electricity, telephone, internet and cable TV in a kind of quad-play (US baseball fans would call it a home run :) ). So this is quite doable. Will hopefully be talking to the head of Latvenergo Telecom tommorrow, so watch this space.

Another tidbid, this one IT related...

The newsfeed website www.newsisfree.com runs on a solution developed in Latvia by Lursoft, the business information and database company that maintains Latvia's commercial register. They've done some other stuff, too. Interesting. More, maybe. Not like a certain newspaper, whose self-defined target audience is the Latvian Jed Clampett (of the Beverly Hillbillies), Ķencis, is going to be jumping all over this story. So you may read it here first.

3 comments:

Buchan said...

Hello,

I am a UK based jounalist working in CEE telecoms, energy and banking. As such I keep an eye on telecoms in Latvia. I have covered Bite GSM's entry to the market and, of course Lattelekom's recent spat with TeliaSonera. So what is the latest, are the Swedes/Finns going to give up Lattelekom to takeover LMT.

I lived over the border in Lithuania for six years. Perhaps you will understand this ( or only about 30%).

As dirbau ir gyvenau Lietuvoje sesi metai. Dabar esu zurnalistas Didziojoje Britianiioje. Daug kartus as buvau Rigoje, kur as zaidziau skvosa. Ir mano zmona lietuve.

I'll keep an eye on your blog. I started a new blog just yesterday, CEEjournalism.blogspot.com. Pay it a visit!

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Steven said...

I’m trying to find out about Unified Communication for a project but there doesn’t seem to be much information available. Is it the same as VoIP, and if not how is it different?