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

In the media: Malone thinks Netflix should pay for bandwidth

June 21, 2013 2:17 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Some U.S. cable operators continue to be agitated that Netflix isn’t paying them for using their pipes, and John Malone, who just sank a whole lot of money into Charter Communications, has thrown in with them. And by the way, Glenn Britt is not interested in selling Time Warner Cable to Charter.

Cox demos new iPad app at Cable Show

June 19, 2013 9:49 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cox Communications took its new iPad app, which is currently going by the name of “personal video experience,” through its paces last week at The Cable Show with demos in Cisco’s booth. Cox first talked up the personal viewing experience (PVE) app at the Consumer Electronics Show earlier this year, but The Cable Show marked the next-generation app’s public debut.

Harmonic streamer does double-duty with ad insertion

June 18, 2013 1:23 pm | by Brian Santo | Product Releases | Comments

Harmonic said its real-time stream processor, The ProStream 9100, now has the ability to perform linear ad splicing. Service providers and broadcasters can use the system to insert targeted local and regional advertisements into broadcast programming delivered via MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 AVC SD/HD transport streams.

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Foxtel debuts TV Everywhere app, OTT access

June 13, 2013 1:46 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Foxtel is providing on demand and catch-up television services, using video processing systems from Elemental Technologies. The Australian service provider is now delivering over-the-top (OTT) content, in addition to roaming access to more than 50 channels through its Foxtel Go app.

Live from the Show: Cable Show 2013 Day III

June 12, 2013 10:42 am | by Brian Santo | Videos | Comments

As we roll into the third day of the NCTA Cable Show 2013, we ponder on what we have learned about X2 and the race to put stuff in the cloud, about high school football in Florida, about CCAP technology, and about life in general. Actually, not so much about life in general.

Time Warner Cable to connect with Samsung Smart TVs

June 12, 2013 9:24 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable will start sending video to some Samsung Smart TVs later this summer. Using the cable operator’s TWC TV app, Time Warner Cable subscribers will have access to 5,000 on demand titles from nearly 100 networks without the need for a set-top box. 

Cable Show: Tech forums get smart about devices, consumers, Wi-FI

June 12, 2013 9:17 am | by Craig Kuhl | News | Comments

More devices, more choices and more broadband translate to more intelligence in our home networks, and intelligent gateways will lead the way. That was the key takeaway from the first of Tuesday’s Spring Technical Forums: “Human Touch: The Intersection of Intelligent Devices and Intelligent Consumers.”

Cable Show: Gigabit DOCSIS? Yeah, we can do that

June 11, 2013 5:18 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

In a 3.0 demo, CableLabs was bonding 128 channels to crank out in excess of 4 Gbps in a total of 768 MHz. In the 3.1 demo, which included OFDM modulation and LDPC error correction, CableLabs was pushing data at a clip in excess of 6 Gbps, but in only 650 MHz, the better to show the spectral efficiency inherent in the move to OFDM.

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Live from the Show: Cable Show 2013 Day Two

June 11, 2013 10:02 am | by Brian Santo | Videos | Comments

Day 1 Featured technology disruptors who weren't so much disruptive as impatient -- if not actually impertinent, and some razzle dazzle from NCTA president Micheal Powell. Oh, and a surprise performance by Hammer (formerly MC Hammer). Can't touch that.

Cable Show: TiVo powers up mobile app for cable operators

June 11, 2013 9:47 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

TiVo is offering cable operators its mobile app that enables second screen viewing in homes with and without TiVo devices. Atlantic Broadband, which recently signed up with TiVo, will be the first cable operator in the United States to deploy TiVo’s mobile app. When Atlantic Broadband launches its TiVo offering in the fall, it will include the TiVo mobile applications in addition to TiVo set-top boxes and DVRs.

From the Cable Show: TV Everywhere not a product but a process

June 10, 2013 6:34 pm | by Craig Kuhl, Contributing Editor | News | Comments

Building a viable business model for TV Everywhere is a tedious and complicated process, with authentication and measurement issues the leading prerequisites for achieving the ultimate goal of content ubiquity. That was the conventional wisdom shared by panelists during Monday’s Authenticate Me, Baby: Consumer Behavior in the TV Everywhere Era session.

From the Cable Show: "Disruptors" not so disruptive

June 10, 2013 6:25 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Executives from Vox Media, Jawbone, Twitter, and Roku were all quite enthusiastic about being complements to the cable industry, but they all wished that cable would innovate a little faster. Tom Rutledge meanwhile essentially admonished programmers to give it up already.

Live From the Show: Cable Show 2013 intro

June 10, 2013 1:06 pm | by Brian Santo | Videos | Comments

We're in Washington D.C., for the 2013 NCTA Cable Show. Eight of 10 buildings surrounding the convention center are being constructed, reconstructed, or deconstructed -- even the Washington monument is wreathed in scaffolding. There's a metaphor in there somewhere...

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Cable Show: Cable WiFi Alliance tops 150,000 hotspots

June 10, 2013 10:55 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Roughly one year after five of the top-six cable operators in the nation announced that they had formed a pact to share each other’s Wi-Fi hotspots, the Cable WiFi Alliance has topped 150,000 access points across the nation. All told, the 150,000 hotspots represent the largest Wi-Fi network in the nation.

TWC has more than 12k hotspots in Southern Cal

June 10, 2013 10:50 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Two years after announcing it was spending $15 million to build a Wi-Fi network in the Los Angeles area, Time Warner Cable announced it was up to 12,000 hotspots. Today the Wi-Fi network spans more than 300 miles of Southern California and features more than 12,000 hotspots.

ADB offers major revision of Commercial Video Solution

June 6, 2013 1:34 pm | by Brian Santo | CED | Product Releases | Comments

ADB announced several new products, leading with its first major revision of its Commercial Video Solution, the company’s system for supplying video to hotels, universities, hospitals, and other commercial businesses. The company’s other introductions include set-top boxes and a gateway.

ActiveVideo beefs up cloud platform; adds Charter to customer list

June 6, 2013 12:06 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

ActiveVideo has shifted its cloud platform into overdrive with today’s announcement that it can deliver TV as an application over IP along with the news that it’s behind Charter Communications’ cloud-based user interface. ActiveVideo also said it has partnered with Sumitomo Corporation to target cloud-based deployments in Japan and in the Asia-Pacific market

In Perspective: Flexinets

June 5, 2013 11:39 pm | by Brian Santo | Articles | Comments

When people watch video on cellular networks, the meter is running, and that’s a severe inhibitor to increased consumption. Wireless carriers are understandably reluctant to stop running the meter.  So what to do? Subsidize the minutes, somehow - an idea ESPN has been floating. 

New Products: Sonus, Digital Rapids, Averna/Pace

June 5, 2013 9:11 pm | by CED | Articles | Comments

Sonus Networks has upgraded its session border control (SBC) portfolio with software and hardware enhancements; Digital Rapids recently started shipping version 3.8 of its the Digital Rapids Stream software; Averna has forged a design-validation partnership with Pace that it said would accelerate customer premise equipment certification (CPE) for cable operators. 

Conax offering SDK for PlayReady DRM client

June 5, 2013 2:25 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Developers can use the SDK to create a client capable of secure delivery of video content from the streaming server to the native player of the client device. The Conax security-hardened implementation for MS PlayReady fully conforms to Microsoft’s rules for Compliance and Robustness and is developed according to Conax’ security requirements including security requirements from  major Hollywood studios and content providers.

Comcast combines CMC, IP Services, into Wholesale unit

June 5, 2013 2:05 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Comcast announced the reorganization of several operations dedicated to managing services on behalf of customers, essentially by folding the previously separate IP services operation with the Comcast Media Center under an umbrella unit called Comcast Wholesale. Comcast Wholesale now incorporates CMC units including Content Solutions, HITS and AdDelivery, with the IP Services unit, which provides data and voice services.

Rovi releases SDK for adding HEVC codecs

June 4, 2013 1:50 pm | by Brian Santo | CED | Product Releases | Comments

The SDK includes the company’s patent-pending Smart Adaptive Bitrate Encoding Technology (SABET), which enables the generation of as many as ten simultaneous output streams from a single source, reducing CPU cycles by utilizing common encoding processes across all levels, Rovi explained. This facility should help lower the costs and reduce the time required for the mass transcoding of large video content libraries to HEVC (High Efficiency Video Coding).

BHN updates app to include free text messaging

June 4, 2013 1:12 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Bright House Networks has updated its “easy gadget” utilities app to include unlimited two-way SMS text messaging for free. With the update, Bright House Networks subscribers can send text messages to and receive text messages from any mobile phone in the United States and other easy gadget users using their Bright House Networks home or business phone numbers.

T-Broad tunes in Alticast’s Windmill

June 4, 2013 1:00 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

T-Broad, which is Korea’s largest cable operator, has selected Alticast’s Windmill Ecosystem to provision its new user interface and next generation services. Alticast’s HTML5-based Windmill platform features a modular approach that allow cable operators to cost effectively build and deploy services.

Virgin Media testing MPEG-DASH

June 3, 2013 1:30 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Virgin Media is trying out Harmonic's ProMedia Suite as a delivery mechanism for MPEG-DASH. Harmonic's ProMedia Live transcodes MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 AVC H.264 content to multiple adaptive bit-rate streams optimized for the Virgin Media MPEG-DASH service. Virgin Media and Harmonic are demonstrating the MPEG-DASH workflow at the ANGA show this week in Germany.

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