World Cup now available on all internet TV platforms as True loses exclusive rights
Thai internet TV providers other than True Corp can now broadcast the whole 2022 Fifa World Cup, the National Broadcast and Telecommunications Commission (NBTC) announced on Thursday evening.
In an urgent notification to internet protocol TV (IPTV) operators, the telecom regulator said that under the “must carry” rule, the tournament must also be made available on IPTV platforms including 3BB TV, NT-TOT IPTV, and AIS Playbox.
The notification effectively cancels True Corp’s exclusive broadcasting rights for half of this year’s World Cup matches via its IPTV and other online platforms.
True had signed a contract with the Sports Authority of Thailand (SAT) for exclusive broadcast of 32 matches after contributing 300 million baht to SAT’s 1.4-billion-baht purchase of the broadcasting rights.
But from now on, fans in Thailand can also watch the matches via other IPTV platforms.
The “must carry” rule dictates that major sports events like the World Cup must be broadcast for free across all platforms in Thailand.
The NBTC also ordered IPTV operators to employ Fifa-standard encryption to ensure that match broadcasts are limited to Thailand.
On Wednesday, Fifa threatened to revoke Thailand’s World Cup broadcasting rights after it found Thai broadcasts of matches were being watched in neighbouring countries.