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Broadband Direct

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

Charter the first MSO to sign Sony 'Passage' license

January 8, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

Charter Communications Inc. on Thursday became the first MSO to sign a license for "Passage," a conditional access (CA) technology from Sony Corp. that aims to loosen Motorola Broadband's and Scientific-Atlanta's grip on the digital cable set-top market. Charter said it plans to use Passage to allow set-tops, network and headend equipment from various companies to work together on its legacy di...

Roberts lauds the potential of 'Passage'

January 7, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

A new conditional access (CA) scheme hatched by Sony Corp. at the 2002 Western Show, if it works as advertised, could help cable operators break a set-top duopoly long held by Motorola Broadband and Scientific-Atlanta, Comcast Corp. President Brian Roberts said Tuesday at a Salomon Smith Barney conference in La Quinta, Calif.

Study: Internet access devices on the rise

January 7, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

The Internet continues to proliferate, but so far, the number of Internet-enabled devices remains limited to basic laptops and PCs and some early Internet-ready phones. But according to a new study from researcher In-Stat/MDR (a sister company to CED), we're on the cusp of a movement that will see a bevy of new Internet-ready devices come online in the near future.

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Ratner named Cablevision vice chairman

January 7, 2003 7:00 pm | by Staff | Comments

Cablevision Systems Corp. has appointed Hank Ratner to vice chairman. Most recently Ratner, 43, served as vice chairman of Rainbow Media Holdings Inc., Cablevision's programming arm. In his new role, Ratner will expand his duties to Cablevision's divisions, report to company President and CEO James Dolan and collaborate with Dolan on the company's overall planning and development.

NCTA: Cable offers HD in more than 90 U.S. markets

January 7, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

With this year's Consumer Electronics Show set to kick off Thursday, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association sent out a reminder that the cable industry is playing a starring role in the development and adoption of high-definition television. Citing cable company reports, NCTA said cable systems serving roughly one-third of U.

Ucentric multi-TV system to support 802.11g

January 7, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

One of the end games cable operators have in mind as they look into the future is networking video to multiple TV sets around subscriber households, and developer Ucentric Systems is pushing along with a multiple-TV system that uses a variety of transmission protocols to deliver video around the house.

Sales mark the spot for Xbox Live

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

The next step in the evolution of broadband is maximizing all those fast connections, and broadband, multiplayer console gaming is giving a certain jump-start to that next stage. Microsoft Corp. provided further proof of that this week by announcing some early returns on its recently launched broadband-only Xbox Live online gaming service.

Chen heads up advance tech at Advance/Newhouse

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

Advance/Newhouse Communications filled a key role this week with the hiring of Jeff Chen as the MSO's vice president of advanced technology. He reports to A/N executive vice president of strategy and development Nomi Bergman. In his new role, Chen serves as the MSO's point person with advanced technology suppliers, including customer premise equipment and video-on-demand distribution systems.

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Four telcos forge Dell DSL deal

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

Taking a stab at cable's leading high-speed position in the consumer segment, three top telcos — BellSouth, SBC Communications and Verizon Communications — have inked a deal with Dell Computer Corp. designed to make it easier for PC users to sign up for DSL services. The agreement will allow Dell customers in the U.

Cedar Point taps West to head up VoIP integration efforts

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Jeff Baumgartner | Comments

Cedar Point Communications Inc. has named Wray West as the IP telephony equipment start-up's vice president, systems engineering. In that role, West will spearhead the integration of Cedar Point products into carrier operations. West, who joined Cedar Point on Jan. 1, was the founder and chief technology officer of Indus River Networks, a virtual private networks technology company currently ow...

Calgary signs on for Terabeam FSO gear

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

As the technology behind a special blend of wireless broadband connections, dubbed free space optics, continues to improve, more enterprise and municipal communications network providers are turning to the technology to link multiple sites on their networks. Western Canadian city Calgary is the latest to turn to the wireless link technology to provide broadband transport and connectivity to a v...

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Rogers losing subscribers

January 6, 2003 7:00 pm | by Staff | Comments

Copyright 2003 Toronto Star Newspapers, Ltd. Toronto Star...01/07/2003 Lexis Nexis Rogers Communications Inc. lost 16,000 basic cable subscribers last year and expects to lose more in 2003, the company said yesterday. Growth will slow in its digital-TV and high-speed Internet businesses and will be little better than flat in wireless telephones, it said.

Study: VOD finally arrives

January 5, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

The numbers may be starting to catch up to the hype for video-on-demand as cable operators begin to roll out VOD in dozens of markets throughout the U.S. and Canada, a new study contends. The new research from In-Stat/MDR (which is owned by the same parent as CED) suggests that the cable industry is starting to deliver on its decade-long promise of VOD services and time-shifting capabilities.

LSI Logic silicon combines hard drive, DVD recorder

January 5, 2003 7:00 pm | by Duffy Hayes | Comments

Consumers are becoming increasingly familiar with digital recording capabilities, and the processors driving much of the technology are becoming cheaper and more integrated along the way. LSI Logic Corp. on Monday unveiled another step in the evolution, with the release of what it called the first single-chip hard disk drive (HDD) and DVD recorder processor, dubbed the DiMeNsion 8650 (DMN-8650).

e-BOX founder dead at 68

January 5, 2003 7:00 pm | by Staff | Comments

Dr. Masao Sugimoto, president and founder of MPEG-4 joint venture e-Box Corp., passed away on Sunday, Dec. 22 in Tokyo, Japan. He was 68. Sugimoto spearheaded the development of digital television for Japan's public television network during his time at NHK. Later, at Pioneer Corp., he led the company's DVD developments.

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