Unotel Telecom and Media Networks Latin America plan to launch a broadband-based pay TV service, using equipment and services from Nagra.

The service is scheduled to go live in the first quarter of 2014. The initial potential subscriber pool will number about 4 million, including shareholders and partners of Unotel, an Internet services provider (ISP) in Brazil that provides white-label services for other media companies, including Media Networks Latin America.

The new service will use a hybrid digital set-top box enabling the delivery of IP, satellite and digital terrestrial services with content secured by Nagra’s content protection technology (Nagra MediaAccess).

It will also be the first commercial deployment of Nagra’s OpenTV 5 middleware over the Media Networks platform in Brazil, with, in future, the possibility of supporting GINGA applications to enable broadcaster interactivity with Unotel subscribers through its free-to-air TV signals, the vendor said.

The set-top Nagra will deliver will also have an option for an external hard disk, which will turn the box into a digital recorder.

Additional services and products will also be offered through the Internet.

As is often the case, prominent sporting events constitute the opportunity for new pay TV options. Brazil is set to host not only the FIFA World Soccer Cup next year but also the Summer Olympics in 2016.

“We are very glad to materialize the dream of many small and medium regional operators with this agreement,” says Orlando Ferreira Neto, President of Unotel. “Our partners will now be able to offer triple play – broadband, voice and video – to their existing broadband customers, allow us to be more competitive and rapidly grow our subscriber base thanks to a complete pay-TV solution.”

“The infrastructure of Media Networks is prepared to support the aggressive proposal for HD channels that Unotel is planning for its program packages. Moreover, this agreement consolidates the leadership of Media Networks as the principal white label wholesaler of PayTV in Brazil and Latin America.” says Leandro Gaunszer, Commercial Director for Media Networks Latin America.