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Broadband Direct

Daily news and top headlines for broadband communications engineering and design professionals

Startup tackles Ethernet optical networks

December 12, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Metro network newbie Internet Photonics Inc. has raised $31 million so far in its effort to develop optical Ethernet transport platforms, and lined up its management roster. "The company is 13 months old and has been in stealth mode until today," says spokesman Mike Granieri. A spinoff of Lucent Technologies' recently sold optical networking group, the company first drew $12 million in funding ...

Deals and other doings

December 11, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Cox Business Services Hospitality Network is gambling on SeaChange International Inc.'s VOD platform for 23,000 casino and resort hotel rooms in the United States. The platform will deliver on-demand movies and interactive services to Cox's 17 hotel customers in Las Vegas, Reno, Tahoe, Atlantic City and other locations.


SonicBlue to hit TiVo with infringement suit

December 11, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Glutton-for-litigation SonicBlue fired a shot over TiVo's bow yesterday by launching another highly public battle over intellectual property. SonicBlue's desire to discuss licensing with TiVo yesterday brought a flat no from TiVo, prompting SonicBlue to threaten a patent infringement lawsuit this morning.


DirecTV 'commandos' raid 11 businesses in six states

December 11, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Talk about revenge of the … well, nerds. DirecTV's official-sounding signal-integrity and legal commandos raided 11 businesses in six states. Not intimidating enough? The DirecTV special forces squad also included law enforcement — and engineers. Watch out. DirecTV says the raids stem from a continued investigation after it executed a few civil seizures in May against three Orange C...

Another news roundup

December 10, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

ExciteAtHome faces another hearing in bankruptcy court this morning at 9:30 PT, a spokeswoman says. Friday, a bankruptcy court postponed a decision on the company's $355 million in contracts with cablecos until this morning. … Microsoft Corp. VP of Windows digital media unit Will Poole previewed the 3G streaming platform technologies slated to be included in Microsoft's next version of Wi...

Pace touts customer program, management

December 10, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Pace Micro Technology Americas says it has restructured its sales operations, and set up network support and customer service functions for the U.S. cable market. The company's Pace Custom Care program includes a customer front office with a toll-free number staffed 24 hours a day, every day of the year, the company says.

Motorola/Rogers team on video compression

December 10, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Motorola announced an encoding systems sale to Rogers Cable for the cableco's Ontario system. Financial terms were undisclosed. Motorola's Broadband Communications Sector will provide 50 channels of PurePixel-equipped, MPEG-2 video compression encoders to distribute analog programming services. PurePixel helps maintain video quality during the encoding and decoding sequence.


Winstar could face Chapter 7, bidders get one week

December 10, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Bidders for Winstar Communications' assets, unable to muster up the necessary financing, were given one more week to raise the funds or the company will switch its bankruptcy to a Chapter 7 liquidation. A court clerk said that, as of late yesterday, no motion had been filed to change to a Chapter 7. The hearing, set for the U.


AtHome judge puts off cable contract ruling

December 9, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

A bankruptcy court judge Friday delayed a decision on $355 million in transition service contracts ExciteAtHome had developed last week with a group of cablecos. After a judge ruled Nov. 30 that the cable companies would have to renegotiate contracts with bankrupt AtHome, a group of them negotiated $355 million in transition contracts.

Microtune/nCUBE: VOD silicon can replace 'bulky' upconverters

December 9, 2001 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

Aiming to slash space, cost and power requirements for on-demand cable services and network-based personal video recording systems, Microtune Inc. and nCUBE Corp. Monday introduced a new set of silicon designed to replace today's "bulky" upconverters. While a typical upconverter is roughly the size of a VCR unit, the Microtune-nCUBE offering reduces all of those components into three "Videocast...

Standards group approves IEEE 802.16

December 6, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

IEEE Standard 802.16 — Air Interface for Fixed Broadband Wireless Access Systems — was approved today by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers Standards Association's standard board. The approval will "set the stage" for more widespread deployment of 10 GHz to 66 GHz wireless metropolitan area networks, the group says.

NCTC: USR report card not complete

December 6, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

So, did U.S. Robotics fudge its grades and get busted? The cable modem newbie said in a news release and interview yesterday that its cable modem had earned an A+ rating and preferred status from the National Cable Television Cooperative. The association responded today with a stern rebuke and strong statements that only Motorola's SurfBoard 4101 had reached preferred status, and only Motorola,...

FCC: Gemstar VBI not mandated for TWC

December 6, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

In a blow for Gemstar International, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission ruled that Time Warner Cable's analog must-carry obligations don't include the program guide company's vertical blanking interval (VBI) technology. "Must carry obligations do not require the company to carry material inserted in the (VBI) of over-the-air broadcast stations at the behest of Gemstar International," th...

TWC taps Concurrent 2000 servers for Fla. unit

December 5, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Time Warner Cable's central Florida unit bought 73 MediaHawk Model 2000 video servers from Concurrent Computer Corp. to support its VOD rollout. The cableco also will use back-office products from CCC. A CCC spokeswoman would not disclose financial terms. The central Florida division is TWC's third largest, with more than 1 million homes passed and nearly 700,000 basic subscribers, CCC says.

Broadband Outlook touts sponsor, speakers

December 5, 2001 7:00 pm | by Anne Kerven | Comments

Broadband Outlook 2002 hosts landed a second sponsor and announced speakers for the January event. The Consumers Electronics Association, a trade group representing more than 650 U.S. consumer technology companies, will sponsor the event. The National Cable & Telecommunications Association also will support the event.


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