Connected TV – it is a right time to start the debate

29 January 2013 Author: EIFonline

On 22 January the European Internet Foundation hosted a dinner debate on Connected TV. The aim of this discussion was to assess which regulatory and practical issues need to be addressed for connected TV to fully realize its economic and cultural potential. The debate was chaired by Sabine Verheyen, MEP and EIF Political Member.


Lorena Boix-Alonso, Head of Converging Media and Content Unit at DG Connect, gave a flavor of the upcoming European Commission’s Green Paper on connected TV and convergence. She disclosed that this paper will analyze the convergence’s impact on the market, European industry and citizens, and will look for ways this can be translated into growth and jobs. Listen to Lorena Boix-Alonso’s speech:

Romain Bausch, President and CEO of SES, then explained why satellites are important for connected TV and convergence, delivering high speed, serving remote areas and reducing costs of broadband infrastructure. Listen to Romain Bausch’s speech:

Power Point presentation is available here.

Arnaud Brunet, Director of External Relations Europe at Sony Europe, also joined the panel of speakers. He called for moving the debate to the broader level and including connected devices and connected screens. Listen to Arnaud Brunet’s speech:


Jürgen Kleinknecht from New Media Editorial Department at ZDF presented their version of connected (smart) TV – HbbTV (Hybrid Broadcast Broadband TV). He talked about the HbbTV from broadcaster and viewer perspectives and described how ZDF is using it. Listen to Jürgen Kleinknecht’s speech:

Power Point presentation is available here.

During the debate session questions arose on how more regulation will affect the freedom of journalism and media pluralism, the neutrality of platforms, and the degree to which market forces will make regulation unnecessary. It was acknowledged that consumers face many problems when trying to use connected TV and it is important to teach them about all the functionalities that this technology is offering.

It was recognised that this occasion is just the beginning of the discussion, while awaiting the Commission’s Green Paper, to see which way Europe will be going.

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