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Shaw launches Arris' home gateway in Calgary

Thu, 05/12/2011 - 8:20am
Mike Robuck

Shaw Communications became the first Canadian cable operator to deploy Arris' whole-home platform after a recent launch in Calgary.

Shaw will roll the Arris Whole Home Solution, which it calls Shaw Gateway, out to Edmonton, Vancouver and other parts of its footprint this summer. Shaw's deployment followed up on the heels of BendBroadband deploying Arris' gateway earlier this year.

Arris' gateway combines elements of its hardware with the Digeo Moxi assets it purchased two years ago. Arris first started demonstrating its gateway at The Cable Show last year and then followed up with more features at the SCTE Cable-Tec Expo.

Shaw subscribers benefit from the gateway's PVR functionality, which comprises a six-tuner, multi-room HD PVR with 500 GB of storage, as well as a customized user interface. It also has a four-port Ethernet home networking router, MoCA 1.1 home networking and optional 802.11n capabilities.

The system connects up to six TVs and supports recording of up to six programs, as well, while playing back three previously recorded programs, all in HD.

The centralized gateway provides multimedia entertainment services, including broadcast and narrowcast video, video-on-demand, DOCSIS 3.0 high-speed data, and two lines of carrier-grade voice over IP, as well as Internet over-the-top and media sharing of user-generated content.

It also supports DLNA to connect with subscriber-owned, DLNA-enabled devices across the home network, and it supports CableCard conditional access.

"The Shaw Gateway experience is a perfect example of how Shaw is changing the way we do business to meet the needs of our customers, and we're thrilled to launch a fully integrated entertainment hub that combines technology and connectivity," said Peter Bissonnette, president of Shaw Communications. "The Shaw Gateway will enhance our customers' entertainment experience and delivers on our promise to provide premium products and services that take advantage of the changing digital landscape."

Future service features include Internet content on TVs; online and handheld device remote PVR scheduling; content search of live TV, recorded TV, VOD and PPV content; and PC files on PCs and laptops, as well as integration of social media and other online properties.

While Shaw's subscribers will enjoy all of the bells and whistles of their advanced whole-home networking platform, Shaw will save on deploying additional equipment such as cable set-top boxes and EMTAs.

Dennis Steiger, group vice president of engineering at Shaw Communications, said in a recent interview with CED that deploying the hybrid gateways from Arris was one of Shaw's biggest initiatives this year, along with the launch of some new tru2way-based set-top boxes.

"We plan on using the cable modem or fiber for the connectivity to the Internet," Steiger wrote in an e-mail this morning. "The Internet connection will then plug into the router/firewall, which is built into the gateway. This lets us use fiber, as well as DOCSIS, to deliver Internet connectivity.

"Now that we have DOCSIS 3.0 everywhere and are going to 250 meg services, we may rethink this approach."

That gateway is available with the Shaw Easy Own program for $17 per month over 36 months, or $598, to Shaw customers in Calgary.

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