News summary for 11/05/07
Microsoft Mediaroom to power IPTV in India
By Brian Santo
Microsoft wrangled a contract potentially worth half a billion dollars from Reliance Communications to help provide IPTV in India.
The two announced what they’re calling a strategic partnership to deliver video services based on Microsoft’s Mediaroom IPTV software. Reliance will have exclusive deployment rights for Mediaroom in India.
Reliance plans to leverage Mediaroom to offer both SD and HD video, video-on-demand (VOD), digital video recording (DVR) capability, instant channel changing, and personal media sharing. Reliance’s IPTV service is scheduled to be launched by March 2008.
Reliance Communications has a customer base of more than 38 million, including more than 1.3 million individual overseas retail customers. Its corporate clientele includes 600 Indian and 250 multinational corporations, and more than 200 global carriers.
Insight expands VoIP offering with Comverse’s InSight
By Traci Patterson
Comverse’s services will allow Insight’s subscribers to receive voice messages via e-mail through an operator-branded Web interface. Subscribers will also have access to other video, entertainment, broadband and multimedia services.
The InSight platform provides an open and modular environment for the launch and delivery of communications and value-added services - from Comverse and third parties - over circuit-switched, VoIP, converged and IMS networks.
"As we become a major provider of voice services, we need a robust platform that will support our current customers and allow us flexibility as we grow our customer base," said Bam Liem, VP of advanced services engineering at Insight.
Insight is the ninth-largest cable operator in the U.S. and offers video, high-speed Internet and voice telephony services in parts of Illinois, Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio.
Tennessee city taps World Wide Packets for quad play
By Mike Robuck
The Clarksville Department of Electricity (CDE) will use World Wide Packets’ Carrier Ethernet product, called Lightning Edge, to connect the city’s residents and businesses to its electrical utility.
The FTTH network will reduce Department of Electricity operating costs on existing utility services while enabling the city to deliver new, revenue-generating quad-play broadband services.
"Our ultimate goal is to serve the current and future residents of Clarksville by building healthy economic growth across the region. To accomplish this, we recognized an opportunity to implement an FTTH network that would allow us to streamline services while lowering overall operational costs," said Ken Spradlin, president of CDE, in a statement. "We've worked with World Wide Packets in the past and their Carrier Ethernet products were proven in our environment."
With 55,000 business and residential customers, Clarksville's electric utility receives nearly 130,000 meter orders per year. Each order currently requires that a technician go onsite to read meters, manage outages and make connections. The new network will enable the city to manage the vast majority of these customer service requests remotely.
Clarksville also plans to implement specialized billing services on the network, enabling customers to pre-pay for services by purchasing them in smaller increments.
SureWest using IneoQuest to assure video quality
By Brian Santo
SureWest Communications has deployed service probes from IneoQuest Technologies not only in its test labs, but also in the field in subscriber homes, which will enable SureWest to assure video quality.
"IneoQuest hardware, primarily the G1-T, has been incorporated into the test and evaluation phase of most vendor hardware that we are considering for purchase," says Scott Barber, vice president of network operations for SureWest. "The IneoQuest gear helps us evaluate a vendor's claims by delivering real-life field results. Most recently, IneoQuest's service probes allowed us to capture the data needed to analyze and identify any quality issues while working with a new encryption vendor on its broadcast units."
Placing IneoQuest probes at the homes of IP video subscribers has enabled SureWest to improve service to the point where SureWest has experienced a clear reduction in operational expenses.
"Prior to this new technology offered by IneoQuest, customer video issues would require us to dispatch a technician to monitor picture quality and wait for something to happen. This was difficult, because there was no guarantee that the problem would repeat itself, and no way to accurately monitor the events leading up to the problem," Barber said. "We began strategically placing the Singulus Lite Cricket probes at targeted homes where it was necessary to monitor the incoming video feed."
Broadband Briefs for 11/05/07
* Charter adds Weather Channel HD to lineup
By Traci Patterson
“At any given time they will be able to choose from more than 100 high-definition movies, series, educational shows and much more,” said Cathy Fogler, VP and GM of video for Charter. “Having content on-demand means watching what you want, when you want it, and now our customers can enjoy that choice and convenience in high-definition.”
* Qwest rolls broadband into Arlington, S.D.
By Mike Robuck
Qwest Communications International announced today that its broadband Internet service is now available to customers in Arlington, S.D.
Arlington, which has roughly 1,000 residents and 140 businesses, is able to receive the service as a result of an investment to upgrade the local telecommunications network. Qwest currently offers high-speed Internet access to about 83 percent of the households in its residential footprint.