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November 8, 1995


By CBR Staff Writer

Hong Kong Telecommunications Ltd is now decided on all its technology partners for its home shopping, banking and video-on-demand service, which is planned for a full launch next July – no question of tentative pilots to see how it goes. It has gone to Iwatani International Corp (Hong Kong) Ltd with Fujitsu Ltd for the switch and transmission technology, Hewlett-Packard Co for media servers and gateways, Sybase Inc for the database software, NEC Corp for the television set-top boxes, and to BroadVision Ltd for the support systems. Contracts are expected to be finalised around the end of the month. The service will start with videos on demand, supermarket shopping, pizza ordering and other retail options, and banking, education and television on demand will be added later. The plan to go into service in July next year will make Hong Kong Telecom and Hong Kong the first in the world to gain access to a whole variety of interactive services, said William Lo, managing director for the newly formed Hong Kong Telecom IMS Ltd.The company is budgeting to spend more than $1,300m to develop the service over the next 10 years, and $256m to $385m in the first three or four years, said Lo. Wharf Holdings Ltd’s Wharf Cable will offer similar services in competition.

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