Exclusive: Cellcast, a Canaan partners funded interactive services company which interactive TV shows, is all set to launch an interactive TV channel called MyTV in the first week of December 2011, CEO Pankaj Thakkar told MediaNama. Cellcast does interactive shows on television, integrated with mobile value added services, with premium rates for messaging and accessing voice portals on mobile. Plans to launch had been announced almost a year ago. Some notes from our discussion with Thakkar: Access to Primetime: "We've been finding it difficult to get airtime, and starting a channel does mean incremental cost, but that is what we had set out to do in the first place. We have been spending money to buy TV slots, now we're spending money to build out our own bandwidth," Thakkar said. Cellcast is launching MyTV first with Airtel and Reliance, and says it is in active discussions with everyone who has a digital headend. The company expects to reach 30% of the Hindi speaking market by the first quarter of next year. What the launch of its own TV channel will allow, is for Cellcast to get access to prime time programming, something which TV channels prefer to hold on to for their programming. Thus either late night or early morning slots have been available for third party programming. In a sense, there is a parallel between this and the decision of home shopping channels like HomeShop18 and STAR CJ to launch their own channels. Marketing: "For us, we already have a…
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