ITN has signed a deal with Freeserve to provide it with broadcast
news. Freeserve is aiming to be the first ISP in the UK to provide high
quality video footage, using ADSL technology.
ADSL (asynchronous digital subscriber line) allows high quality images
to be sent down BT’s copper phone lines.
ITN will provide Freeserve’s 1.7 million active users with a selection
of continuously updated news reports and footage, which they can dip in
and out of at their leisure. The news organisation will not create
original programming for Freeserve.
Until now Freeserve’s news has been provided by the Press Association,
in a words and pictures, rather than video format.
Freeserve has only just begun to trial ADSL technology. The first video
footage went out to selected trial homes in London and Manchester last
week. Freeserve expects the whole of the UK to have access to its ADSL
technology by the summer.
The move will allow Freeserve to show the quality content that will
allow it to compete with other ’content-rich’ organisations like the
newly formed AOL Time Warner conglomerate.
ITN new media MD Garron Baines will oversee the provision of news to
Freeserve. Baines said the technology to provide moving images to home
PCs has until now been prohibitively expensive.