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Broadband Direct

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

CableLabs working on information models for industry

May 15, 2014 12:15 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Over the past few years, CableLabs has been cooking up information models for the cable operator industry that are designed to provide commonality across the various technologies and systems. CableLabs chief technology officer Ralph Brown said the data information architecture seeks to integrate the different networks and systems into a common platform that will improve the rate of innovation and provide a seamless experience.

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AT&T's pursuit of DirecTV thrills no one

May 13, 2014 1:39 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

AT&T is on the verge of buying DirecTV, according to reports. The deal could be worth $50 billion, but no one thinks this is about synergy, or subscribers, or scale. Most think it's about AT&T's dividend. Whoo. Hoo. AT&T can buy DirecTV, but it won’t be able to buy an exclamation point.

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Verizon: Stormy weather in Q1

April 25, 2014 1:20 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Verizon's FiOS TV penetration strategy seems to be running out of steam at the 35 percent mark, but subscriber adds were down in Q1 mostly because people don't want installers in their homes when it's snowing. Meanwhile, FiOS broadband is growing okay. The FiOS footprint is what it is, but what about Verizon over the top?

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Review: Tablo a nifty little over-the-air HDTV system

April 19, 2014 2:24 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The Tablo is a nifty little item that lets you play over-the-air signals on your tablet. You can watch live, or record in advance and watch later. You can choose to record specific episodes, new episodes of a series, or an entire series. You can take your device anywhere, connect to the Internet, and you have access to your Tablo, including everything you’ve got stored on your disk drive. 

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From NAB: A reckoning is coming. Not now, but soon enough

April 10, 2014 2:42 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Ultra high definition TV. Workflow management. End-to-end multi-screen (or “over the top”) delivery. For anyone even remotely involved in content preparation and distribution, those were the three big themes at the NAB Show that concludes today. And there’s a glut of vendors aiming to provide each of those technologies.

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Sense and Copyrightability

March 24, 2014 6:42 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The fact that OTA broadcast stations are also carried on cable systems is thoroughly and absolutely irrelevant to Aereo – Cablevision is absolutely irrelevant to Aereo, and even if five Supreme Court Justices disagree I still won’t buy the argument.

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Apple-Comcast! Hurry! Everybody Over-React!

March 24, 2014 1:20 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

This ends up being less than The WSJ makes it out to be… at first. After paragraphs and paragraphs of speculation, the paper reports that Apple is asking for an arrangement Comcast has no doubt already laughed off, assuming the report has all the details.

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Comcast/TWC Cliffsnotes

February 14, 2014 12:47 pm | by Mike Robuck | Comments

Everyone, it seems, has an opinion on Comcast’s $45 billion takeover attempt of Time Warner Cable. While it’s going to take some time to let the proverbial dust settle, and for the various regulatory bodies to make their decisions, here are a few more points to consider.

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Comcast-TWC: It's personal

February 13, 2014 1:44 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Malone is a tremendously astute executive, who knows full well that Wall Street loves a deal. Furthermore, TWC had been turning in some disappointing quarterly results, and Wall Streeters fervently despise disappointment. All that combined with the retirement of Glenn Britt, and TWC looked like a pretty good opportunity.

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FCC's IP dreams: Lifeline? Meh.

January 31, 2014 1:24 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The FCC is encouraging experiments in moving from POTS to VoIP. As a practical matter, the FCC is talking to phone companies, but the results might have some ramifications for cable operators that got into the voice market with VoIP, as well as those cable operators who also operate POTS networks.

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Comcast enters Charter-TWC saga

January 27, 2014 4:07 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

The likelihood that Comcast will participate in the takeover of Time Warner Cable seems to be increasing, with word leaking out that if Charter Communications were to buy TWC, Comcast would be interested in buying TWC’s New York City, North Carolina, and New England systems from Charter.

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Gun shy

January 14, 2014 1:24 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

If there’s anybody who knows how to get screwed in a merger, it’s Time Warner Cable. TWC was a pawn in AOL’s acquisition of Time Warner, among the most disastrous mergers in history. Time Warner subsequently used TWC as a piggy bank it could bust open, emptying TWC of cash when it spun off the MSO.

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Beans & Cornbread, and optical LAN

December 24, 2013 1:18 pm | by Editor | Comments

Optical local area networking has some clear advantages. It is roughly comparable in price, and can last for 50 years or more. Fiber requires vastly less infrastructure to support, and significantly less maintenance. It is far more difficult to tap, and is impervious to EMP (electro-magnetic pulse) disruption.

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Born free

December 13, 2013 12:17 pm | by Brian Santo | Comments

Two bills were introduced to fix the video market, one from Rep. Steve Scalise, one from Rep. Anna Eshoo. You have to wonder if Scalise was even trying. Just look at that acronym: NGTMA. What are we supposed to do with that? Pronouncing it is a nightmare: N-n-ngitma? Ingateema? Nagtama?

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In the media: Cox also sets its sights on TWC

November 27, 2013 12:29 pm | by Editor | Comments

The landscape for the sell-off of Time Warner Cable continues to shift with Cox Communications reportedly joining Comcast and Charter/Liberty Media as a potential suitor. Citing un-named sources, The Wall Street Journal reported that privately held Cox was considering whether it wanted to join in on the bidding for Time Warner Cable.

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