Broadband Briefs for 05/21/09
• DirecTV, Dish expand lineups
By Traci Patterson
DirecTV is now offering local high-definition programming to customers in the Odessa-Midland, Texas, designated market area. The following broadcast networks will be available in HD: KPEJ/FOX and KPBT/PBS.
DirecTV now offers local HD broadcast channels in 126 cities, representing more than 89 percent of U.S. TV households. The largest satellite provider in the U.S. offers local channels – including both standard-definition and HD – in 152 cities.
And Dish Network has launched Fuel TV for its Classic Gold 250 programming package. The network is now available in nearly 30 million homes nationwide.
• Cisco consummates Pure Digital purchase
By Brian Santo
After wrapping up its purchase of Tidal Software yesterday (story here), Cisco completed its $590 million stock purchase of Pure Digital Technologies. Where Tidal is about cloud computing, Pure Digital plays into Cisco’s other new strategic thrust: consumer electronics.
Pure Digital created Flip Video, technology that lets consumers capture video, edit it and upload it to sites such as YouTube in a cheap, quick and easy manner.
With the close of the acquisition, the Pure Digital team becomes part of Cisco's Consumer Business Group, which also includes Linksys. Jonathan Kaplan, chairman and CEO of Pure Digital, becomes senior vice president and general manager of the combined organization, reporting to Ned Hooper, senior vice president of corporate development and the consumer group at Cisco.
• CommScope will offer $200M in senior notes
By The Associated Press
HICKORY, N.C. (AP) – CommScope Inc., a network infrastructure maker, said Wednesday it will offer $200 million in senior subordinated notes, due 2015.
Underwriters will have 30 days to buy up to an additional $30 million principal amount of the notes. The company also will offer 8 million common shares; underwriters have 30 days to buy an additional 1.2 million shares.
Proceeds from the offerings will be used to pay down debt, and remaining funds will be used for general corporate purposes. J.P. Morgan Securities Inc., Merrill Lynch & Co. and Wachovia Capital Markets LLC are acting as joint book-running managers for the convertible senior subordinated notes offering.
• Windows hooks up with Netflix
By Brian Santo
Microsoft and Netflix have cut a deal that makes it easy for anyone with Windows Media Center (WMC) on their PCs to access content from Netflix. Apps to enable WMC users to access Netflix do exist but were never supported by either company.
The new, officially supported app, based on Microsoft’s Silverlight streaming video technology, should be an automatic update for anyone with Windows Media Center, which is incorporated in the Vista Home or Vista Premium operating systems.
Xbox 360 system owners already had access to Netflix via an Xbox Live Gold Membership.
• Motorola sets up EMEA channel
By Brian Santo
Motorola said it has established a Home & Networks Mobility EMEA Channel Program that will enable resellers and distributors in Europe, the Middle East and Africa to deliver Motorola products supporting Internet service providers (ISPs), alternative carriers and regional service providers.
Product offerings for the new Motorola H&NM EMEA Channel Program include: cable and DSL modems and gateways, cable modem termination systems (CMTSs), hybrid fiber-coaxial and gigabit passive optical networking (GPON) equipment, encoders, video-on-demand servers, edgeQAMs, advertising solutions, set-top boxes, Expedience OFDM wireless network gear and customer premises equipment (CPE).