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

FourthWall scores personalization patent

September 25, 2013 12:29 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

FourthWall Media announced this morning that the U.S. Patent office had approved a patent for its broadband device personalization technology. The technology in the patent uses proprietary methods to analyze consumer on-device behaviors.

Product Video Showcase: TV Anytime with Envivio

September 24, 2013 5:28 pm | by CED | Videos | Comments

Envivio’s VP of Solutions, Arnaud Perrier, talks about the benefits of cloud TV and demonstrates TV Anytime functionalities using Envivio Halo network media processor.

Turner turns to Adobe Primetime

September 24, 2013 12:52 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Adobe announced a set of new analytics features for its PrimeTime product that will make it easier to both monitor the quality of TV everywhere streams and evaluate viewer behavior. The new capabilities come with a new per-stream pricing model. Adobe also announced thatTBS is the latest customer of Primetime.

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Oceanic TWC adds two Asian Networks to channel lineup

September 24, 2013 12:30 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Oceanic Time Warner Cable has added two Asian networks, TVK2 and Saigon Broadcasting Television Network (SBTN), to its channel lineup. TVK2, which is a sister channel to TVK, targets a growing Korean-American audience and features music, lifestyle, drama, news and current event programs in both Korean and English. 

CME tees up IP STB service with Alticast

September 23, 2013 12:29 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Central European Media Enterprises (CME) has picked Alticast to enable its subscription VOD service, which is slated to launch in the Czech Republic this month. CME is using Alticast’s AltiPlatform and AltiView, which allows the broadcaster to launch pure IP set-top box services throughout its markets.

Cross-platform ad campaigns catch more consumers

September 20, 2013 1:30 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

A recent ad campaign run by Comcast Media 360 demonstrates that ads on TV and ads delivered via broadband-connected platforms affect significantly different consumer groups. The implication is that multi-screen delivery, which service providers are still struggling to monetize, can be highly valuable in ad campaigns by reaching different consumer constituencies.

Zanaware sets up services operation

September 20, 2013 1:01 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Zanaware Technologies has established a separate unit specifically to provide customized headend management solutions for broadcast, cable, MPEG/digital video, satellite and IPTV. Service options may include: extension of Zanaware’s platform, development hardware/software solution, or a hybrid combination.

EU antitrust body OKs Vodafone's German cable deal

September 20, 2013 12:05 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The European Union's antitrust watchdog has cleared a 7.7 billion-euro ($10 billion) takeover of Germany's biggest cable operator by British telecoms firm Vodafone PLC.  Meanwhile, Verizon Communications is buying back a 45 percent stake in Verizon Wireless currently held by Vodafone.

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Universal Sports Network inks distribution deal with Cox

September 20, 2013 11:23 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Universal Sports Network announced it has a distribution deal in place with Cox Communications. Cox is offering Universal Sports Network’s Olympic, endurance and adventure sports programming to its Cox Advanced TV subscribers. The multi-year deal also granted Cox TV Everywhere rights.

Liberty Global envisions pan-Europe Wi-Fi network

September 19, 2013 1:34 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Liberty Global executive Peter Dorr raised the possibility of creating a pan-European Wi-Fi network that would be free to cable subscribers. Dorr also spoke about the ease with which Liberty Global was able to update its Horizon multi-screen service, which is based on ActiveVideo’s cloud-based technology.

MRV Communications bulks up Pasadena’s communications network

September 19, 2013 12:28 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The city of Pasadena picked MRV Communications’ optical transport offering for its new communications network. Pasadena is using MRV’s FiberDriver to provide high-capacity optical services for its municipal network. The city’s new network will be used to link its facilities using future-proof, high bandwidth services over a fully-owned fiber infrastructure.

Dish says Hopper DVR wins 3rd federal ruling

September 19, 2013 12:19 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Satellite TV company Dish Network says it has won a third federal court decision upholding the use of its Hopper digital video recorder, which allows viewers to watch recordings of hours of prime-time broadcasts with the commercials automatically stripped out. Dish Network Corp.'s general counsel, R. Stanton Dodge, called the decision by Judge Laura Swain of New York "yet another victory for American consumers." 

Divergent paths to TV everywhere

September 19, 2013 12:15 pm | by Brian Santo | Blogs | Comments

That service providers will have to deliver TV everywhere is a foregone conclusion, but a couple of recent announcements – one from Sling and another from TiVo – provided an interesting juxtaposition of alternatives of how to accomplish the feat.

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ST Micro adds Rovi HEVC to set-top chips

September 18, 2013 1:23 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

STMicroelectronics and Rovi are working together to commercialize HEVC compression in set-top boxes, with the former integrating the latter’s DivX HEVC technology into its set-top box system-on-chip (SoC) families. HEVC roughly doubles the compression rate of the previous generation of compression technologies, MPEG-4 / H.264.

Ensequence plans interactive ad service across customer base

September 18, 2013 1:06 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Ensequence said it is launching a new national platform for interactive TV advertising that will debut in the first quarter of 2014. With the new platform,  the company is moving to a service model for the first time, attempting to connect advertisers with its customers, which include cable operators, satellite providers, telco distributors and Smart TV manufacturers.

Arduous trek to living room for glasses-free 3D may be getting smoother

September 17, 2013 8:13 pm | by Craig Kuhl, Contributing Editor | Articles | Comments

For years, 3D’s arduous trek from the friendly confines of theaters to the traditional environs of mainstream living rooms has been stalled by unfilled promises of advancing technologies, by exorbitant costs, and by lack of content. But mostly it’s been about the clunky glasses required to experience 3D.

Is HEVC ready for prime time?

September 17, 2013 8:03 pm | by Sophie Percheron, Product marketing manager for live distribution, Ateme | Articles | Comments

Ten years after the transition from MPEG-2 to H.264/MPEG-4 AVC, history is about to repeat itself with the arrival of HEVC, also known as H.265, the successor of H.264/MPEG AVC. The standard was approved in January, and just a few months later a live end-toend HEVC content delivery chain was demonstrated for the French Tennis Open event in early June 2013, providing tangible proof that HEVC is on a path toward commercial deployment.

RDK is moving at lightning speed

September 17, 2013 7:53 pm | by Mike Robuck | Articles | Comments

One year after the Comcast Reference Design Kit (RDK) made its public debut at The Cable Show, the platform has more than lived up to its “service velocity” goal. In short, the RDK went from being a PowerPoint presentation at last year’s Cable Show, to a viable platform that is cutting down on development cycle for not only set-top boxes and gateways, but also applications.

DIY gives way to outsourcing in Multi-screen

September 17, 2013 7:19 pm | by Brian Santo | Articles | Comments

For service providers, the challenges of multi-screen are no less daunting for being well known. It is a marvelously complex process to deliver video to an ever-expanding universe of devices running multiple major operating systems all with different screen sizes and supporting unique combinations of streaming formats and digital rights management (DRM) schemes.

Engineering-wise: Creating the cable generalist

September 17, 2013 7:09 pm | by Steve Harris, Senior Director, Advanced Network Technologies, SCTE | Articles | Comments

As the industry is dismantling its video, voice and data silos, it is creating new opportunities for cable professionals to increase their value to their employers, their industry and themselves. By mastering the entire landscape of the network, service offerings and customers, the next-generation professional is able to drive deployment of high-quality, highly reliable services that are helping cable maintain its competitive edge.

Second-screen specialist AfterBuzz signs with Akamai

September 17, 2013 1:26 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

AfterBuzz TV has contracted with Akamai Technologies to distribute its schedule of aftershows, a series of webcasts and podcasts of commentary that immediately follow the broadcast of television shows and televised events. Akamai is delivering the aftershows to iOS and Android smartphones and tablets, as well as to personal computers.

TWC kicks off high school football coverage in 11 states

September 17, 2013 12:44 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable is serving up its largest helping of high school football coverage this season across 11 states in its footprint. By the end of the year, TWC SportsChannels will have televised more than 300 games, featuring some 500 high schools in states such as New York, California, Texas, Ohio and the Carolinas.

IBC: BSkyB upgrades HD testing platform with S3 Group

September 17, 2013 12:41 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

BSkyB has expanded and upgraded its digital TV testing platform by using a product from S3 Group. BSkyB is now using S3 Group’s StormTest Product Development Center to include HD image handling on its Sky+HD platform. Sky has deployed the product to streamline quality assurance processes by validating each generation of digital receiver and associated software releases.

IBC: RGB Networks tunes in Dolby for TVE

September 17, 2013 12:31 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

RGB Networks has added Dolby Laboratories’ Dolby Digital and Dolby Digital Plus codecs into its TransAct Packager to improve audio on TV Everywhere services. With the partnership, video service providers (VSPs) using adaptive bit rate (ABR) streaming will be able to offer improved sound across tablets, smartphones, PCs, connected TVs and other IP-enabled devices.

Memory Lane: Power play

September 16, 2013 8:29 pm | by Stewart Schley, Media & technology writer | Articles | Comments

In Chicago, the great fire of 1871 wiped out much of the business district, and the capitalists came running. The fire’s fury had produced an attractive, greenfield opportunity for building infrastructure in what was the world’s fastest growing city. Nearly two dozen electricity entrepreneurs competed to carve out operations in small delivery sectors.

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