From The Cable Show: Video is king when it comes to keeping subs

Wed, 04/01/2009 - 9:30am
Mike Robuck

Even with the advent of low-quality videos from the likes of YouTube and others, video quality is still one of the most important factors to cable subscribers.

The session “Quality Matters: Assuring Performance Across Multiple Platforms” kicked off The Cable Show today. And as one example of the importance of video quality, Comcast Media Center senior vice president, chief operating officer and panel moderator Gary Traver cited a CTAM Pulse Study, which found that 82 percent of those surveyed in the “Future Shapers and Makers: An Examination of Consumer Segments” report listed quality of service (QoS) as the most important factor.

Asha Kalyur, Cisco’s marketing manager, said during her presentation on video assurance that 83 percent of problem costs are related to poor video experiences. Truck rolls for unhappy video customers not only eat into a cable operator’s revenues but can also potentially drive customers into the arms of a competitor.

Dave Higgins, Comcast Media Center’s vice president of quality assurance, cited a study by MRG Research, which said that 40 percent of customer churn was related to video quality issues.

Higgins said there were eight critical touch points that can lead to video impairments, any one of which can cause ripples farther down the video chain into customers’ homes.

“In the old days, we could measure quality of service with bits and BERs,” Higgins said. “Now we need different metrics.”

The CMC tracks quality of service metrics across markets and by channels, and it also uses subjective analysis.

Kalyur said cable operators need an end-to-end video assurance platform to reduce truck rolls and isolate domain problems quickly. By using a unified dashboard instead of six separate screens, cable operator employees can isolate video impairments faster and potentially stop them before they reach a viewer.

Cisco’s S.V. Vasudevan, director of cable video architectures, spoke about how the cable industry can “steal” the work that has already been done by the enterprise market on data centers. Data centers can handle chores such as authentication of users, where the content is going, and to which devices.

Michael Adams, Tandberg’s vice president of application software strategy, took Vasudevan’s concept a step farther by recommending that content management systems work in conjunction with content delivery networks to deliver video across the various platforms – such as mobile, PCs and TVs.

More Broadband Direct 04/01/09:

•  From The Cable Show: And the show begins

•  Cox joins the DOCSIS 3.0 party 

•  From The Cable Show: Video is king when it comes to keeping subs
•  Comcast, itaas join for iTV
•  TWC taps Motorola for multi-room DVR
•  SureWest, TellyTopia launch video upload channel
•  From CTIA 2009: Clearwire showcases Wi-Fi hotspot expander
•  Cox names Bialis SVP of Western Division
•  Sprint offers enhanced services to ops
•  Comcast serves up more HD choices in New Jersey
•  Aurora intros 2 industry firsts: 8-wavelenght LcWDM, full RFPON platforms

•  Jungo takes aim at driving down DOCSIS 3.0 customer support costs 

•  Convergys upgrades OSS/BSS platform
•  ActiveVideo says interactive apps driving operator revenues
•  Openet paving cable's way to transaction model
•  Macrovision launches tru2way technologies
•  Drake intros hospitality headend
•  Imagine touts ICE platforms
•  From CTIA 2009: Samsung unveils WiMAX-capable device
•  From CTIA 2009: Alcatel-Lucent intros EPC for LTE
•  Broadband Briefs for 04/01/09



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