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

Netflix adds 2.3M more US subscribers in banner 4Q

January 23, 2014 1:04 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Netflix ended December with 33.4 million U.S. subscribers who stream video over high-speed Internet connections, up from 31.1 million in September. The company picked up another 1.74 million subscribers outside the U.S. to end last year with 10.9 million international customers.

NBCU/Comcast tee up deal with 49ers, Levi’s Stadium

January 23, 2014 12:20 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Comcast and NBCUniversal have struck a wide-ranging, 10-year deal with the San Francisco 49ers to provide a range of services at the new Levi’s Stadium. Hooking up professional sports stadiums with its Ethernet and Wi-Fi services is nothing for new Comcast, but the deal with the 49ers also included programming elements as well. 

Adva trial tests practicality of WDM-PON in rural markets

January 22, 2014 1:28 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Adva Optical Networking is engaged in a WDM-PON trial in Austria to test the practicality of delivering uncontended gigabit connectivity to rural residential subscribers. WDM-PON enables individual subscribers to be independently connected to a remote central office that can be tens of kilometers away.

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AT&T’s GigaPower services resonates with users in Austin

January 22, 2014 11:32 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

With robust signups exceeding expectations, AT&T announced this morning that its GigaPower tier, which will hit speeds of up to 1 gigabit per second later this year, has been expanded to reach twice the number of households in Austin this year. The all-fiber network is currently provisioning a symmetrical 300 Mbps service in Austin prior to the 1 Gigabit deployment.

Verizon: we'll nab share by revving FiOS data speeds

January 21, 2014 1:30 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Verizon posted fourth-quarter net income of $5 billion, attributed largely to the number of wireless subscribers connecting not only with smartphones but also with tablets. The numbers were also boosted to a lesser extent by modest growth in the company’s other two strategic businesses: FiOS and enterprise services.

Verizon picks up Intel's cloud video operation

January 21, 2014 12:30 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Verizon Communications confirmed that it will buy Intel Media, Intel’s IP video operation. The company expects to use the technology to improve multi-screen delivery on both its wireline FiOS network and on its wireless LTE network.  Intel Media was driving to become a competitive commercial video company, similar to Netflix, Amazon Instant, or the forthcoming service from Sony.

Charter fires back at Time Warner Cable

January 21, 2014 12:13 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

In order to win the hearts, minds and votes of Time Warner Cable shareholders, it’s become a war of online presentations between Charter Communications and Time Warner Cable. Today Charter Communications posted a follow up presentation on its website that came on the heels of Time Warner Cable’s rejection of its $132.50 per share bid for Time Warner Cable early last week.

SK Telecom to Show Off 450 Mbps LTE-Advanced

January 20, 2014 12:41 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The Korean wireless provider said it can combine three bands—two 10 MHz bands and one 20 MHz—and hit aggregated downlink rates of 300 Mbps. The company expects to commercially launch the service by the end of 2014 when it estimates compatible chipsets will come to market.

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Report: Sprint / T-Mobile merger in the works

January 20, 2014 12:30 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

SoftBank and Deutsche Telekom (DT) have moved to direct talks on a deal for the German carrier’s 67-percent stake in T-Mobile. The two companies are said to be ironing out obstacles to the deal and said the process could take months. The deal could have a profound effect on wireless broadband and broadband pricing trends.

NFL Network to stream live on Xbox One

January 17, 2014 1:20 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Microsoft is working with NeuLion to enable the delivery of the channel at 60 fps. Doubling the typical frame rate of live video is especially pertinent with sports broadcasts. Sports networks, including ESPN, consistently say that if forced to choose between one or the other, a faster frame rate is preferable to higher resolution.

Former Cox exec Schultz joins Charter

January 17, 2014 12:38 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Charter Communications has hired Richard Schultz for the position of senior vice president of inbound sales and retention, customer operations. Schultz has more than 25 years of experience leading sales in the telecommunications industry, most recently at Cox Communications.

Comcast’s new research center reaches for the skies

January 16, 2014 12:20 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Not content with already having the tallest skyscraper in its hometown of Philadelphia, Comcast announced yesterday that its new research center will be even taller when its finished in 2017. The glass and stainless steel Comcast Innovation and Technology Center will over shadow the neighboring Comcast Center, which is the cable operator’s headquarters that opened in 2008.

Charging Netflix at issue in open-Internet case

January 16, 2014 12:08 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Will broadband providers start charging Internet services such as Netflix to deliver the massive amounts of data that streaming video and other content require? A court ruling this week gives providers such as Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Verizon more flexibility to do that, even though immediate changes are unlikely.

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Carlson Wireless okayed to market white spaces system

January 15, 2014 1:20 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Designed using software-defined architecture and dynamic spectrum sharing, RuralConnect transmits in unused frequencies in the UHF TV band (470-698 MHz). The system uses the Spectrum Bridge database to determine what frequencies are unused in any given broadcast area.

Dimetis and Ateme announce strategic partnership

January 15, 2014 1:07 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The integration of the Dimetis BOSS Link Manager with the Ateme high-fidelity encoding/decoding platform creates a low-latency, high definition solution for broadcast content. The two companies believe the combined solution will be of special interest to companies transmitting live content, for example sports broadcasters.

Suddenlink picks NetCracker for customer management

January 15, 2014 12:50 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

NetCracker Technology announced this morning that Suddenlink Communications has signed on to use its Customer Management and CRM platform. NetCracker was already the primary hosted billing platform provider for Suddenlink, but NetCracker has expanded that relationship by installing its web-based Customer Management and CRM offering.

Harris Broadcast wraps up deal to buy Imagine Communications

January 15, 2014 12:43 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Harris Broadcast announced this morning that it had completed its purchase of Imagine Communications. The deal brought Imagine’s adaptive bit rate (ABR) technology into Harris’ product portfolio. Financial terms of the deal weren’t released.

Huawei rejects reports of security weakness

January 15, 2014 12:38 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Chinese tech giant Huawei on Wednesday rejected suggestions its telecoms equipment is vulnerable to hacking and forecast a rise in 2013 profit of nearly 50 percent. Chief financial officer Cathy Meng rejected as "groundless" reports that Huawei equipment might be more vulnerable to security threats than telecoms infrastructure made by other companies.

Charter calls Time Warner Cable a 'turnaround project'

January 15, 2014 12:35 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Charter Communications executives labeled Time Warner Cable a "turnaround project" suffering from a failed strategy as they urged Time Warner Cable shareholders to prod management to begin talks with Charter on its buyout offer. The criticism was leveled Tuesday after Charter revealed details of its proposed bid for Time Warner Cable. The offer would create the third-largest pay TV provider in the country.

SCTE promotes Schankel to VP

January 14, 2014 1:38 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The SCTE announced that Bill Schankel has been promoted to Vice President, Marketing, with responsibility for driving an expanded agenda of marketing, communications and business development activities for the industry’s leading provider of technology training, certification and information.

Gun shy

January 14, 2014 1:24 pm | by Brian Santo | Blogs | Comments

If there’s anybody who knows how to get screwed in a merger, it’s Time Warner Cable. TWC was a pawn in AOL’s acquisition of Time Warner, among the most disastrous mergers in history. Time Warner subsequently used TWC as a piggy bank it could bust open, emptying TWC of cash when it spun off the MSO.

Appeals Court knocks down net neutrality rules

January 14, 2014 1:15 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

A federal appeals court ruled that the FCC lacks the authority to impose many of the network neutrality rules it set down to guide the behavior of broadband providers, thereby invalidating those rules. The Federal Communications Commission can, however, go back and devise a better argument for its authority to restore the negated rules.

Google to buy Nest Labs for $3.2B

January 14, 2014 12:32 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The search engine operator was an early investor in Nest Labs. It says the company's Nest Learning Thermostat has been a "consistent best-seller." The thermostat, which retails for $249, is designed to learn how inhabitants like their homes to be heated and cooled. Once it learns the consumers' preferences, it automatically adjusts the temperature on its own.

TWC rejects ‘grossly inadequate offer’ from Charter

January 14, 2014 11:36 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The gloves are off in Charter Communications’ attempt to takeover Time Warner Cable. Charter has offered to buy the nation’s second largest cable operator for $132.50 a share, which was slightly higher than where Time Warner Cable’s shares closed on Monday. Monday night Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus, who took over as CEO of the nation’s second-largest cable operator on Jan. 1, formally rejected Charter’s third offer.

The hottest gadgets of CES: 3-D printers to 4K TVs

January 13, 2014 1:08 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

TV makers were heartened by the support they received for their new ultra-high-definition TV sets. The 3-D printing section bustled with activity, and it was clear that even though most people won't be buying a printer any time soon, they may be enjoying 3-D printed products, such as jewelry, wedding cakes and dental braces, in the near future.

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