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Telefónica has revealed plans to build a new Global Video Platform (GVP) for all video entertainment services over both IPTV and over-the-top (OTT) networks across its operating businesses.

In order to facilitate the speedy launch of the GVP - which will see first deployments in Brazil, Chile and Spain - the telco has entered into a multi-year strategic agreement with Microsoft, making specific use of the IT giant's Mediaroom product suite to power pay-TV and OTT services.

"Video is a fast-growing market, and we already play a leading role in delivering pay-TV services to customers in Europe and Latin America," explained Vivek Dev, director of digital services, Telefónica Digital. "This new platform allows us to reflect the deep and rapid changes happening in this market. It offers the ease and convenience of a global, convergent platform while maintaining flexibility over content for our local businesses. Most important, it allows us to meet customer demands for access to video content on an ever-expanding range of devices."

Telefónica believes that the GVP will enable it to deliver high-performance, differentiated and feature-rich TV services over both its managed broadband networks as well as non-managed broadband networks. The range of advanced features it aims to offer to TV subscribers will include time-shifting, multi-screen and multi-device capabilities.

Indeed the services are set to play out to devices such as set-top boxes, Xbox 360, tablets and smartphones. Due to the fact that the Mediaroom platform includes technologies such as Microsoft PlayReady, Internet Information Services Smooth Streaming and Microsoft Silverlight, Microsoft is guaranteeing that the delivery of TV services across the various networks and to multiple screen types can all be done via one common technology infrastructure.

Such capability, it says, will result in significant efficiencies for Telefónica in time to market, cost of delivery and overall scale. Solving business challenges, as well as enabling the latest technological advances, is a key plank in Microsoft's TV strategy, Kurt Steck, general manager, operator technology, TV and services business, told Rapid TV News.

"In today's world, operators [such as Telefónica] face increased competition and [end users] are more demanding. We aim to work with our partners to deliver the highest quality of service, giving them a platform on top of which they can drive innovation, offer scale and [assist] in driving cost out of the business. Our approach is to have a deep partnership to address these business issues. It is very important that Microsoft continues to make available new technologies and new [services] and evolve to allow [customers] to stay competitive," he commented.

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