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Broadband Direct

Daily news and top headlines for broadband communications engineering and design professionals

CES: A few gems in smart home sector

January 9, 2015 12:39 pm | by Anick Jesdanun, Associated Press | Comments

Technology forecasters are calling 2015 the year of the Internet of Things — that idea that everyday objects will use sensors and Internet connectivity to start thinking and acting for themselves. Here's a review of the connected and smart home devices that were on display at CES this week. 

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Sony CEO: 'No playbook' for hack

January 9, 2015 12:34 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

Days before Thanksgiving, Sony Pictures employees had logged onto computers that flashed a message from a hacker group calling itself Guardians of Peace. Soon personal information for tens of thousands of current and former workers was dumped online, including Social Security numbers and the purported salaries of top executives. More than six weeks later, the studio's network is still down as techs work to get it back online.

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Report: IoT morphing Internet

January 8, 2015 1:44 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

While the full fruition of the Internet of Things may be a several years away, smart home and connected devices are already having an impact on the Internet. Cloud-vendor Akamai Technologies released its third quarter 2014 State of the Internet report this morning, which said, in part, that the Internet of Things (IoT) was starting to change the Internet.

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CES: Wheeler hints at utility-style rules for Internet

January 8, 2015 1:32 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler appears poised to propose new rules that would classify Internet service providers as public utilities in a move designed to ensure everyone has the same access to free content online.Wheeler strongly indicated Wednesday that he favors the shift to tougher regulations, describing it as "just and reasonable" during an appearance in Las Vegas at CES.

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Netflix mum on how many people watch their series

January 8, 2015 1:28 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

Even as Netflix continues to pump out more original programming, its bosses say they will continue to keep secret details on how many people are actually watching. The ratings "arms race" on traditional television has a negative effect on creativity, said Ted Sarandos, Netflix's chief content executive. 

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C Spire extends rollover data to shared plans

January 8, 2015 1:23 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | Comments

The consumption model of charging for broadband continues to morph, as wireless broadband carriers try to match or exceed each other's offers to let consumers rollover unused portions of their monthly data allocations. AT&T yesterday adopted the approach; C Spire today modified it's plan.

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Frontier names SVP of video

January 8, 2015 12:57 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Frontier Communications has promoted Stephen D. LeVan to senior vice president, video content and delivery, a move that signals the company’s intent to unify the company’s disparate video operations. Frontier operates both FiOS and U-verse platforms, as well as reselling Dish Network.

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DSL-accelerating G.fast technology demonstrated at CES

January 7, 2015 2:00 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Two companies involved in G.fast said they have conducted the first public demonstrations of the technology that promises to accelerate ordinary DSL networks up to rates fast enough to support the delivery of 4K ultra high definition (UHD) video, and possibly on even to a gigabit per second.

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Ateme demo's LiveSphere on a set-top

January 7, 2015 1:28 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The company showed the LiveSphere application running on an Android set-top box reference design based on the STMicroelectronics Cannes chipset, which supports 4K video. The dynamic selection of the field of view relies on a remote by 4MOD Technology.

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Broadcom teams up with Comcast on RDK-B

January 7, 2015 1:00 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

A collaboration between Broadcom and Comcast is providing a key building block to the Reference Design Kit for broadband devices. At CES, Broadcom announced that its DOCSIS 3.0 and 3.1 silicon now supports RDK-B, which will allow cable operators to speed up the deployment cycles for next-generation broadband gateway devices.

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Suddenlink signs up to deploy Rovi’s DTA Guide

January 7, 2015 12:51 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Suddenlink Communications has signed up to use Rovi’s DTA guide for its subscribers that are using HD digital terminal adapters (DTAs.) The Rovi DTA Guide provides more digital-like features in viewers’ living rooms while freeing up bandwidth for more HD channels and faster broadband speeds.

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CES: FTC chief says consumer privacy a priority

January 7, 2015 12:48 pm | by Associated Press | Comments

While gadget companies are celebrating a coming bonanza of health trackers, connected cars and "smart" home appliances, the head of the FTC is pressing the tech industry to protect consumer privacy. Powerful networks of data sensors and connected devices will collect a vast trove of user information but represent "a deeply personal and startlingly complete picture of each of us," said FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez. 

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Charter shows new hybrid "Worldbox"

January 7, 2015 12:25 pm | by Steven Hawley, special to CED | Comments

Cisco was directly involved in the design and software integration of the Broadcom-based hybrid set-top box. Charter is using ActiveVideo’s Cloud TV platform, which renders the entire user experience server-side, including the EPG video thumbnails, and delivers it as an MPEG stream.

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Samsung will Connect Everything It Makes Within Five Years

January 6, 2015 2:02 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | Comments

SmartThings, a connected home startup that Samsung bought in 2014, at CES Monday pushed out the next generation of its products and deepened third-party product integration. The company also introduced a new premium subscription service.

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MoCA 2.0 hits 400 Mbps in field tests

January 6, 2015 1:44 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

The Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) announced at CES this morning that it had reached 400 Mbps net throughputs during its ongoing MoCA 2.0 field tests. The 400 Mbps net throughputs (MAC rate) were reached in 90 percent of all coaxial cabling outlets or paths, while net throughputs were greater than 350 Mbps for 95 percent of the paths.

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