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

Building a better customer experience

October 24, 2013 10:08 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

TV apps and recommendation engines are two ways that cable operators can keep subscribers from wandering away into the arms of another service provider. Wednesday’s Cable-Tec Expo session “The evolving customer experience” provided an overview of TV apps, personalized recommendation engines, and cloud-based services.

Apple unveils new Macs, iPad ahead of holidays

October 22, 2013 6:30 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Apple is refreshing its iPad lineup and slashing the price of its Mac computers ahead of the holiday shopping season, as it faces an eroding tablet market share and growing competition from rival gadget makers. Apple unveiled a new, thinner, lighter tablet called the "iPad Air" along with a slew of new Macs.

U-Verse expands TV Everywhere to Android

October 21, 2013 1:48 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

AT&T U-verse has extended the availability of live TV channels to Android devices. Twenty of those 100 channels are available for viewing outside the home. Those same 100 channels are also available for home viewing through AT&T’s Uverse.com web portal.

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Comcast’s turns on 900 Wi-Fi hotspots in Utah

October 18, 2013 1:08 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Comcast has launched its Xfinity WiFi service in Utah by lighting up 900 access points in Ogden, Salt Lake City, Provo and other cities along the Wasatch Front. Comcast also recently announced it had turned on 300 hotspots in the Kansas City area, which is also served in some areas by Time Warner Cable’s Wi-Fi service. 

Hulu names Fox exec Hopkins as CEO

October 18, 2013 12:57 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Online video service Hulu named Fox executive Mike Hopkins as its new CEO Thursday, ending speculation over the company's leadership as it embarks on a period of expansion. The announcement comes three months after Hulu's owners announced in July they had called off their second attempt in three years to sell it and would instead invest $750 million more to ensure its future growth.

Demystifying Technology: Manifest Manipulation in Multi-screen Delivery

October 17, 2013 3:39 pm | by CED | Videos | Comments

CED Editor-in-Chief Brian Santo discusses ad insertion in a multi-stream environment. Multi-screen ad insertion always relies on creating a manifest, and there are several ways to do that, but one method  gives service providers all the tools they need to do the job.

Arris, Seawell combo on multi-screen ad delivery

October 17, 2013 1:23 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Arris Group and SeaWell Networks have integrated the former’s SkyVision ad insertion platform and the latter’s IP session delivery controller to enable the delivery of localized, session-oriented advertisements and programming at the home network level.

AT&T scores Wi-Fi deal at Dolphins’ stadium

October 17, 2013 1:20 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Miami Dolphin fans at Sun Life Stadium can keep track of game statistics and their social networking endeavors thanks to the installation of 1,100 AT&T Wi-Fi hotspots. To complement the Wi-Fi access points, AT&T also installed its distributed antenna system (DAS) technology at Sun Life Stadium, which provides cell service equivalent to 16 individual cells sites.

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Arris nails down rights to sell Sling technology

October 16, 2013 3:27 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Integrating Sling technology into one of its boxes apparently wasn’t enough. Arris has arranged with Sling Media to become the exclusive worldwide distributor of gateways and standalone devices that integrate Sling technology.  Arris will also eventually take control of worldwide licensing of the technology.

Migrating to IP in the cable TV Environment: benefits, challenges, and resolutions

October 16, 2013 1:53 am | by Yaron Raz, director, Digital Video Solutions, Harmonic | Articles | Comments

The main challenge of switching to an IP-based infrastructure is that it doesn’t happen overnight. To make the transition, an operator needs to support two infrastructures for some period of time: a QAM infrastructure that uses MPEG-2 for video compression and a second silo for IP that relies on a mix of MPEG-4 and adaptive bit rate technology.

Netflix's shares soar on report of cable talks

October 15, 2013 12:34 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Shares of Netflix Inc. rose Monday in the wake of a newspaper report that the online TV and movie streaming company is in talks with several cable companies to make its service available to cable customers. The Wall Street Journal reported Sunday that Netflix is in discussions with Comcast Corp., Suddenlink Communications and other cable providers to offer its streaming service on cable set-top boxes.

Media: Netflix talking to Suddenlink, Comcast

October 14, 2013 1:04 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Netflix is engaging in preliminary talks with Comcast and Suddenlink to make its streaming service available as an app on the cable operators’ set-top boxes. The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that the discussions were in the early stages and that a deal with either cable operator wasn’t imminent. 

Concurrent serves up cloud-hosted video software

October 11, 2013 1:13 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Concurrent has taken the wraps off of a new software platform that helps service providers stream content from cloud-hosted video libraries. The company said its unified origin server simplifies content distribution and reduces content preparation costs.

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New gadget frees mobile TV from blocky attachment

October 11, 2013 1:06 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

A new gadget lets you watch TV on your phone or tablet without a blocky attachment. Audiovox's "mobiletv" gizmo allows you to pick up free TV signals and watch them on Apple and Android mobile devices without eating into your cellular data plan. The accessory doesn't have to be attached to the mobile device physically

TWC stirs in live streaming of Scripps channels

October 8, 2013 12:44 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable has added live streaming of Scripps Networks Interactive's channels, which include the Travel Channel and Food Network, to its TWC TV app. The Scripps channels are available on iOS and Android platforms, as well as the cable operator’s TWCTV.com web portal.

Universal Sports Network sticks distribution agreement with Verizon

October 8, 2013 12:36 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

With a new multi-year agreement in hand, Universal Sports Network’s programming is now available in HD to Verizon’s FiOS customers across the nation. Over the coming months, Verizon subscribers will also be able to watch Universal Sports Network, which includes Olympic, adventure and endurance sports programming, on a variety of portable devices outside of their homes.

AT&T updates app to deliver live streaming

October 7, 2013 12:29 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Thanks to a recent update, AT&T’s U-verse App can now stream more than 100 live channels, including around 20 that can be viewed outside of subscribers’ homes. Live streaming is currently supported on iPhone and iPad devices, but a spokeswoman for AT&T said support for more devices and operating systems was forthcoming.

Twitter tunes in to TV partnerships ahead of IPO

October 7, 2013 12:17 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

As Twitter prepares for its initial public offering, the San Francisco-based company is also working hard to insert itself into the TV advertising economy. In recent months, the social networking company has forged partnerships with television content owners such as CBS, MTV and the NFL through a program it calls Amplify.

Comcast nets more online streaming, VOD from CBS

October 4, 2013 12:15 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Thanks to an expanded deal, Comcast is now able to offer its subscribers more CBS video content both online and in video-on-demand. Comcast customers will now be able to tap into past seasons of CBS’ “The Good Wife” on its Xfinity Streampix service while keeping up with the current season via its Xfinity On Demand platform.

All you need to know about Twitter

October 4, 2013 12:05 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Twitter, a privately held company built on blurbs, has finally laid itself bare in documents that read more like a treatise than a tweet. The roughly 800-page filing Twitter Inc. released late Thursday on its way to an eagerly anticipated IPO contains tantalizing tidbits about its growth and its attempts to make money from its influential short messaging service.

TWC broadens Wi-Fi reach in Austin

October 3, 2013 2:14 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable held a press event in Austin this morning to announce that its TWC WiFi service was available across 900 hotspots. Earlier this week, AT&T announced it would have a 1 Gbps service available next year in Austin, which also roughly coincides with a Google Fiber’s 1 Gig service launch in Austin.

Cisco friends Facebook

October 3, 2013 12:07 pm | News | Comments

Cisco Systems Inc. said Wednesday that it has struck a deal with Facebook Inc. to help businesses better target consumers using mobile devices. Under the arrangement, consumers visiting a store, hotel or other business using the Cisco-Facebook service are given the option to "check in" with Facebook when they use their mobile phone to access the Internet. 

WD offers cloud storage devices for the home

October 2, 2013 1:16 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

WD is introducing a line of residential storage devices that will allow users to access their digital content – video, music, data – from PCs, Macs, and iOS and Android handhelds – from anywhere else with an Internet connection. My Cloud devices are available in 2 TB and 3 TB models, with a 4 TB version due in November.

Comcast Business pitches Ethernet for Oakland A’s

October 2, 2013 12:35 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The Oakland Athletics will head into Friday’s night’s playoff game with the Detroit Tigers with bandwidth to spare thanks to a recent upgrade by Comcast Business. Comcast Business outfitted Oakland’s O.co Coliseum, which also houses the team’s executive and administrative offices, with a fiber-based Ethernet connection.

Now at your library: Streaming movies, music

October 2, 2013 12:25 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

There's a new source to stream movies and other digital content, and it's not a tech company with tens of thousands of titles. It's something more familiar, and might even be just down the street: the public library. Hoopla launched in full in May with 20 library systems.

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