Broadband Briefs for 04/09/09

Thu, 04/09/2009 - 8:00am

Grande aware of possible acquisition
By Traci Patterson

San Marcos, Texas-based triple-play provider Grande Communications is not “shopping a credit facility in connection with its sale,” but “the company is aware of third-party efforts to finance a possible offer to purchase the company,” according to a recent filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (available here).

In January 2008, Grande hired Waller Capital Corp. to explore its strategic alternatives to enhance shareholder value (story here), and Waller Capital will continue to assist Grande in this capacity, the filing stated.

Grande’s hybrid fiber/coax (HFC) network serves parts of Austin, Corpus Christi, Dallas, Midland, Odessa, San Antonio, San Marcos and Waco, Texas.

DirecTV adds HD locals in 2 new markets
By Traci Patterson

DirecTV is now offering local high-definition (HD) programming to customers in the Dothan, Ala., designated market area. The following broadcast networks are now available in HD: WDHN/ABC, WTVY/CBS and WDFX/FOX.

The satellite provider has also launched HD locals in the Beaumont-Port Arthur, Texas, designated market area. The following broadcast networks are now available in HD: KBMT/ABC, KFDM/CBS and KBTV/FOX.

DirecTV now offers local HD broadcast channels in 121 cities, representing more than 88 percent of U.S. TV households.

Qwest launches ‘Talk to Qwest’ on Twitter
By Traci Patterson

Qwest has announced its presence on Twitter, called “Talk to Qwest." The Talk to Qwest team will monitor for customer service-related "tweets" and will respond to and resolve customers’ problems, the company said.

"People are talking online about Qwest, and it's important that we listen and respond in a way that lets them know we've heard them,” said Joshua Sippola, a Talk to Qwest team lead in Idaho. “Whether we solve customers' problems, advise on appropriate services to meet their needs or simply thank them for choosing Qwest, it's gratifying to connect with our customers on their terms."

Comcast, the nation’s largest cable operator, also uses Twitter to monitor customers’ needs and concerns. When the operator recently experienced an e-mail outage, it kept Comcast SmartZone e-mail customers up to speed via the @comcastcares Twitter feed and the company’s blog.

MetaSwitch, Acme Packet ink reseller agreement
By Mike Robuck

MetaSwitch and Acme Packet have hooked up on a reseller agreement that will allow MetaSwitch to sell Acme Packet’s family of session border controllers (SBCs).

The long-term interoperability relationship also allows MetaSwitch to sell Acme’s call agent, media gateway and application server product offerings to service providers that are looking at deploying IP voice and multimedia communications services. Financial terms of the reseller agreement weren’t available.

More than 50 service providers have already deployed joint Acme Packet and MetaSwitch platforms, including CLECs Engage Communications and Aero Communications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Computer Services Inc. (CSI).

More Broadband Direct 04/09/09:
•  FCC seeks advisors; requests info on competition, policy
•  Digeo revamps Moxi HD DVR for Internet content
•  Shaw shrugs off recession in Q2
•  Cisco to buy Tidal Software
•  Clearfield rolls out new PON cabinet for FTTx installs
•  Cablevision CEO's 2008 pay package worth $12.5M
•  French lawmakers reject Internet piracy bill
•  Broadband Briefs for 04/09/09




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