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Broadband Briefs for 9/25/08

Thu, 09/25/2008 - 8:00am

Dish Network, Sony Pictures ink deal on VOD
By Mike Robuck

Dish Network said today that it has signed an agreement with Sony Pictures Television to carry the studio’s movies and other programming on its VOD platform and pay-per-view service.

Dish Network subscribers will need a DVR to access the VOD platform, which is called Dish On Demand, while the pay-per-view offerings are accessed through a designated channel on Dish’s channel lineup. The financial terms of the agreement weren’t announced, but it covers both HD and SD content.

In July, Dish Network laid claim to being the first video provider to offer HD programming in 1080p. The first movie released in 1080p resolution was “I Am Legend” on Aug. 1. Dish is offered the video-on-demand (VOD) movie for a limited time, at $2.99 instead of its usual price of $6.99.

Verimatrix secures $20M in third round of funding
By Mike Robuck

Content-security company Verimatrix wrapped up its third round of funding to the tune of $20 million, with JK&B Capital joining Goldman Sachs and SunAmerica Ventures.

Verimatrix said the additional capital, which was its largest round of funding to date, will be used to expand and accelerate its content security offerings to hybrid, cable and satellite markets around the world.

Verimatrix said its suite of VCAS solutions offers a layered content security system that enables transparent delivery of content to multiple screens across different networks.

Verimatrix’s business plan is to push into more traditional pay-TV markets with its software-based content security.

DirecTV counts 94 local HD markets
By Traci Patterson

DirecTV is now offering local HD programming in Burlington, Vt.; Plattsburgh, N.Y.; Champaign, Springfield and Decatur, Ill.; and Myrtle Beach and Florence, S.C.

With the addition of these new markets, DirecTV now offers local HD broadcast channels in 94 U.S. cities, representing nearly 82 percent of TV households.

The satellite provider is continuing its expansion of HD programming. DirecTV said that it will add 27 more HD local channel markets by year’s end, providing local HD broadcast channels in 121 cities, representing more than 88 percent of TV households.

KDDI selects Opera Software for au Box service
By Traci Patterson

Opera Software announced that KDDI and Okinawa Cellular have selected Opera Devices 9 for its new product, "au Box," a set-top box (STB) that allows users access to music and video content via their TV sets on their au mobile phones.

The au Box will be made available on Nov. 1 in Japan.

Motorola has announced a new line of set-tops that allow users to transfer content to and from mobile phones, without the need for a PC as an intermediary. And KDDI will be the first to use the new Moto boxes, for au Box. The service will be delivered to au Box subscribers as an option on a leased basis.

Anritsu puts Ethernet OAM on MD1230B
By Traci Patterson

Anritsu has introduced Ethernet OAM software for its MD1230B Data Quality Analyzer, allowing for a test solution that can evaluate Ethernet OAM equipment and networks in accordance with ITU-T Recommendation Y.1731 and IEEE801.1ag.

According to Anritsu, the addition strengthens the MD1230B analyzer’s support of Next Generation Networks (NGNs) and is part of the company’s commitment to developing test solutions to help in the development, deployment and operation of NGNs.

The Ethernet OAM software supports load generation and protocol analysis of 10M to 10G Ethernet networks, and it can also generate and detect error conditions. Additionally, the software has built-in capture and decode functions to analyze responses of OAM commands to signals on the network.

More Broadband Direct:

• Green steps down as CableLabs CEO

• EchoStar adds new Slingbox; upgrades converter box

• Motorola intros set-tops that move content to, from mobile phones

• San Bruno Cable picks RGB Networks' gear for digital video upgrade

• Verizon, Nokia Siemens close in on 100 Gbps networking

• AT&T, Cisco, Microsoft form downloading org

• FCC to vote on D-Block resurrection plan

• SCTE releases Election 2009 schedule

• Broadband Briefs for 9/25/08

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