French regulators move to open up pay-TV market

French authorities have moved to ensure that Canal Plus and Orange do not establish a stranglehold on the country’s pay TV market.

The competition watchdog said Tuesday that Orange must offer its content and channels to third parties after an exclusivity period capped at two years. The France Telecom-backed mobile operator has invested heavily in premium sports and movies to bolster its IPTV and satellite-delivered pay-TV service. Regulators said that it must make the content available to other platforms and operators after two years.

Meanwhile, French regulators are minded to extend the competition commitments undertaken by French pay-TV operator Canal Plus when it merged with TPS in 2006, according to local press. The reports suggest that regulators are attempting to open up the wholesale market for pay-TV channels in order that new entrants can enter the pay-TV market.

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