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

Al-Jazeera buys Current TV from Al Gore

January 3, 2013 2:44 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Al-Jazeera has long struggled to get carriage in the U.S., and the deal suffered an immediate casualty as Time Warner Cable announced it is dropping Current TV due to the deal. Current TV is carried by Comcast and DirecTV. Neither company announced plans to drop the channel.

LodgeNet to reorganize

January 2, 2013 3:00 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

LodgeNet, which provides Internet and on-demand movies to hotels and hospital rooms, is filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection and will be acquired by investment firm Colony Capital. LodgeNet says it will form a strategic partnership with DirecTV.

Sidera Networks merges with Lightower Fiber Networks

January 2, 2013 2:57 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Berkshire Partners announced it was brokering a deal, which is valued at $2 billion, that will merge Lightower Fiber Networks and Sidera Networks once it’s completed. Sidera was formerly RCN Metro Optical Networks until Abry Partners spun it off from RCN.

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FCC eases airlines’ path to in-flight broadband

January 2, 2013 2:49 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The Federal Communications Commission has adopted rules that will serve to help airlines more expeditiously roll out in-flight broadband. The rules streamline the process for airlines applying for a license to offer Internet service onboard during flights.

In Perspective - Scrying for soup

January 2, 2013 1:33 pm | by Brian Santo | Articles | Comments

Albert Einstein said that insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Last year, I predicted that somebody might finally do something interesting with tru2way. Would studiously ignoring tru2way be considered “something interesting”? Judges? OK then, 2013.

Capital Currents - Emergency information for sight-impaired viewers

January 2, 2013 11:39 am | by Jeffrey Krauss, president of Telecommunications and Technology Policy | Articles | Comments

The Federal Communications Commission has begun a new proceeding on delivery of emergency information to blind and sight-impaired viewers. The FCC seems to be aware of the practical problem noted above, but it’s not making much progress in dealing with it.

ACA Summit - March 12-14, 2013

December 26, 2012 5:04 pm | by CED Magazine | Events

What better way to learn about regulatory and policy developments than directly from these heavy-hitters from Washington? The American Cable Association Summit will be held March 12-14. It's the 20th Annual ACA Summit.

Data cap bill presented in Congress

December 21, 2012 2:04 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The Data Cap Integrity Act, introduced by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), aims to give consumers the tools they need to manage their own data usage. It would institute industry-wide data measurement accuracy standards for ISPs and impose disciplines to ensure that ISP data caps are truly designed to manage network congestion.

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Arris to buy Motorola Home for $2B

December 19, 2012 6:36 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Arris announced it will acquire the Motorola Home business from Google for $2.35 billion. Arris will get outright possession of approximately 1,000 patents, and also an open license to about 1,000 more held by Motorola Mobility (which remains with Google).

FCC approves AT&T's bid to buy Comcast spectrum

December 19, 2012 3:13 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The FCC approved AT&T's bid to soak up spectrum from Comcast, stating the "proposed transactions would serve the public interest." The deal gives AT&T licenses to AWS-1 and WCS spectrum in 608 markets, covering 82 percent of the U.S. population in 48 states.

FCC limits Dish spectrum, sets 4-year timetable for rollout

December 19, 2012 3:12 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

In its order, the FCC said it declined a proposal presented by Dish Network that would have included shifting the AWS-4 uplink spectrum up five MHz to protect the adjacent H-block, a piece of spectrum in which Sprint has expressed an interest.

Apple, Google snag IP in $525M Kodak patent sale

December 19, 2012 3:04 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

Kodak announced that a consortium organized by Intellectual Venture and RPX Corp. have agreed to pay approximately $525 million for the purchase and license of patents. Intellectual Ventures counts heavyweights Apple and Google as members.

Sprint seals deal to buy 100% of Clearwire

December 17, 2012 2:12 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

Sprint's bid to own 100 percent of Clearwire has been accepted at $2.2 billion, which equals the $2.97-per-share cap that Sprint majority stakeholder Softbank placed on the deal. Sprint said the deal takes the enterprise value of Clearwire to approximately $10 billion.

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Online portal to replace Michigan government TV

December 17, 2012 1:57 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The state is changing how people can keep an eye on the Michigan government. The Michigan Department of Technology, Management and Budget and Michigan Government Television are launching an enhanced online portal to replace the MGTV cable channel.

FCC issues NPRM for 3.5 GHz band

December 14, 2012 2:52 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The FCC will move ahead with a plan to make available 100 megahertz of shared spectrum in the 3.5 GHz Band (3550-3650 MHz) for the use of small cell and database technologies. The Commission said the proposal lays the groundwork for the widespread deployment of small cell technologies across the spectrum.

Seattle adds partner to develop computing network

December 14, 2012 2:51 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn says the city has reached an agreement with a broadband developer to build out its fiber network for high-speed computing for homes, businesses and services. The deal allows Gigabit Squared to start raising money for engineering work.

U.N. group gives nod for greater Internet oversight

December 14, 2012 2:49 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A U.N. conference weighing possible Internet rules shifted into a high-stakes showdown after advancing a proposal for greater government oversight. The proposal was a blow to U.S.-led efforts to keep new regulations from touching the ’Net.

South Korea Says Samsung Chip Plant Caused Cancer

December 14, 2012 2:47 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A South Korean government agency said that working at a Samsung Electronics factory caused the breast cancer of a worker who died earlier this year, only the second time it has recognized a link between cancer and Samsung's chip plants.

Shhhh! A new law says TV ads can't blare anymore

December 13, 2012 8:41 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

TV viewing could soon sound a little calmer. The CALM Act, which limits the volume of TV commercials, goes into effect. The act is designed to prevent TV commercials from blaring at louder volumes than the program content they accompany.

Verizon moves pension obligations to Prudential

December 11, 2012 2:34 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Verizon Communications said it has transferred $7.5 billion in pension obligations to Prudential Insurance after a retiree association failed to convince a court to stop the move. Members of the Association of BellTel Retirees sued to stop the deal.

Dish: Sprint trying to block new market entrant

December 10, 2012 12:30 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

The back and forth between Dish Network and Sprint continued, as Dish Network submitted an ex parte filing that blasts Sprint's suggestion that the FCC do more to protect the H-block from being interfered with by Dish's AWS-4 spectrum.

Cablevision hikes data cost by $5 a month

December 7, 2012 2:17 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The cost of Cablevision’s video and voice services will remain the same, and the price increase doesn’t apply to subscribers who are currently part of a promotional package, but the new pricing will go into effect once a customer’s promotion ends.

WSJ: Google’s auction for Moto ending today

December 7, 2012 2:10 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Google is reportedly closing up its auction for Motorola Mobility’s Home unit, with Arris, Pace and Technicolor among the list of prospective suitors. The last round of bids were due, although the deadline could be extended, according to one of the sources.

CTIA: Dish spectrum will not interfere with GPS

December 7, 2012 1:57 pm | by Andrew Berg, Wireless Week | News | Comments

In the ongoing drama surrounding Dish Network's AWS-4 spectrum, the CTIA in a filing said there is no need for the adoption of GPS-specific technical requirements in the Federal Communications Commission's final rules on Dish Network's holdings.

Vendors, video service providers onboard energy conservation agreement for STBs

December 6, 2012 12:46 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The companies involved are Comcast, DirecTV, Dish Network, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, Verizon, Charter Communications, AT&T, Cablevision, Bright House Networks and CenturyLink, as well as manufacturers Cisco, Motorola Mobility, EchoStar Technologies and Arris.

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