Internet Photonics reveals first MSO customer, new VOD transport platform

Sun, 03/30/2003 - 7:00pm
Jeff Baumgartner

Cablevision Systems Corp. is supporting its ambitious video-on-demand service rollout with the deployment of Internet Photonics' optical Ethernet transport platform.

Cablevision marks the first publicly announced MSO customer for Shrewsbury, N.J.-based Internet Photonics.

The vendor is also working with five other MSOs in North America, all in "varying degrees of rollout," said Internet Photonics Vice President of Marketing Gary Southwell. "We believe that this will be a big year for us in building on-demand transport networks.

Cablevision — which is supplementing a slate of movies-on-demand content with free and subscription fare from programmers such as MagRack, HBO, Showtime and the Independent Film Channel - has rolled out VOD to digital customers in systems in Eastern Long Island, New Jersey and in its New York-Connecticut cluster.

Cablevision began rolling out Internet Photonics' 10 Gigabit "LightStack MX" platform and LightHandler PC management system about a year ago, and the operator has deployed about 200 "systems" from the vendor so far, Southwell said, noting that Cablevision will install more as its VOD service footprint grows.

Southwell said the combination allows Cablevision to extend its reach with VOD, centralize its existing servers and, in turn, save on overall streaming costs.

The capacity fostered by the platform will also enable the MSO to offer other bandwidth-intensive services such as high-definition television and interactive gaming, he added.

In a related announcement, Internet Photonics bowed the LightStack GSLAM (Gigabit Services Line Access Multiplexer), a complement to the LightStack MX that provides operators with a more flexibility at the headend.

A chassis-based product, the LightStack GSLAM enables cablers to add blades as capacity requirements dictate, Southwell explained.

That approach also becomes a money-saver, he said, noting that Internet Photonics' current products offer transport costs of about $30 per stream, but that figure would drop to $25 or less as blades are added to the GSLAM chassis.

He said the new product is "in production" with one major MSO. Cablevision, meanwhile, is currently testing the GSLAM.


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