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

S3 Group takes testing out of lab, into live networks

August 26, 2014 12:36 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Video test and validation platform vendor S3 Group has expanded its StormTest portfolio beyond labs and into live networks with its new StormTest Warning Center element. The new cloud-based platform enables remote service monitoring, validation and real-time analytics of video services across connected devices on live networks.

Senate video promotes broadcaster a la carte

August 26, 2014 12:34 pm | by Brian Santo | Blogs | Comments

VIDEO: Senate Republicans are promoting the notion of making local stations a la carte on cable networks with a new YouTube video. The idea has the potential for gaining bipartisan support, even in this bitterly divided Congress, as a consumer-friendly and nearly pure free-market solution.

BT signs expanded deal with thePlatform

August 26, 2014 12:29 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

White-label video publishing vendor thePlatform has signed an expanded, multi-year agreement with United Kingdom-based triple play provider BT. With the new deal, thePlatform’s mpx system will serve as the cloud-based, central video publishing system for BT TV, as well as provide support for other video-related initiatives.

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German IPTV service powered by Elemental video platform

August 25, 2014 1:48 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Deutsche Glasfaser, an FTTH network provider is preparing to go live within a few weeks with linear TV, radio, VOD and multiscreen services to regional subscribers in Germany. The company is using a video platform from Elemental Technologies to deliver the services.

TiVo bows Roamio DVR for cord cutters

August 25, 2014 12:08 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

TiVo has targeted the niche of cord cutters with its new, limited edition Roamio OTA DVR that receives over-the-air signals via antennas. The Roamio OTA, which was designed for TV viewers that don’t subscribe to cable or satellite services, costs $49.99 out of the box, compared to the $200 that TiVo charges for the four tuner, CableCard enabled Roamio model.

Charter Spectrum takes flight in more SoCal communities

August 25, 2014 12:01 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Following a recent conversion to all digital, Charter Communications has launched its Charter Spectrum brand in more communities in Southern California. The new digital services included a free speed upgrade from up to 30 Mbps on the downstream to 60 Mbps for most of the MSO’s subscribers in the area. 

LG bets on pricey OLED technology as future of TVs

August 25, 2014 11:55 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

LG Electronics Inc. announced two new giant OLED TVs with ultra-high definition screens Monday, sticking with its strategy of using the exceptionally expensive OLED display technology. The South Korean company said it will ship 65-inch OLED TVs starting September in South Korea, Europe and North America. A 77-inch model will hit shelves later this year.

Dish Network taps Swain as new CFO

August 22, 2014 12:06 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Dish Network announced that Robert Olson will retire from his positions of executive vice president and chief financial officer on Oct. 15. Steve Swain, currently senior vice president of programming, will take over the CFO position from Olson, and report to Dish CEO and president Joseph Clayton.

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TWC adds tablets to news app

August 22, 2014 12:04 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable recently updated its TWC News app to include support for tablets as well as mobile devices. The latest update allows authenticated Time Warner Cable subscribers to tap into live and on demand programming from the cable operator’s news channels in New York City, the state of New York, North Carolina and Texas.

Aereo loses in court again; still not necessarily dead

August 22, 2014 11:56 am | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The saga continues. The Second Circuit Court of Appeals has declined to hear Aereo’s argument that if it is, as the Supreme Court deemed, essentially a cable company, it must be treated like one. But Aereo still has the option to argue its case.

Cox not interested in buying T-Mobile

August 21, 2014 1:11 pm | by Brian Santo | Blogs | Comments

Speculators on Wall Street, eager for deals to move the market and frustrated by the collapse of talks between Sprint and T-Mobile, have been toying with the names of other companies who might step in and buy T-Mobile. Who's in a position to do it, though?

Comcast’s Xfinity on Campus service officially launches

August 21, 2014 12:35 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

After flying under the radar for several years, Comcast announced today that its IP-based “Xfinity On Campus” service has officially launched. The service allows college students to watch live TV and VOD content on their IP-enabled devices, including, laptops, tablets and smartphones while on campus.

MLB online chief optimistic on relaxing blackouts

August 21, 2014 12:20 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

An easing of blackout restrictions on Major League Baseball games online could come as early as next season, according to the head of baseball's online business. In an interview this week, Bob Bowman said he is optimistic that a deal could be reached soon with various cable operators, channels and ballclubs. 

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TWC, Bright House, add NBC/U content to TV apps

August 20, 2014 12:39 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks have secured the rights to offer NBC Universal's full portfolio of broadcast and cable network programming through their TV Everywhere applications. The multi-screen deal also includes local NBC and Telemundo-owned broadcast stations.

Piksel exits stealth mode with SaaS video system

August 20, 2014 12:23 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The company, which has risen from the ashes of KIT Digital, is launching an over-the-top video platform built on a set of software modules that address encoding, DRM, authentication, and a range of other functions, all available on a software-as-a-service model.

NimbleTV touches down in Windy City

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

NimbleTV’s TV Everywhere service is now available to existing Comcast and AT&T video subscribers in Chicago. With the Chicago announcement this morning, NimbleTV announced it was no longer charging a monthly fee for the service when it includes 10 or more channels.

Nielsen Catalina to use FourthWall viewer data

August 19, 2014 1:40 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The company links advertising with retail sales by integrating data from Nielsen with shopper data from over 70M households.  With access to FourthWall Media’s TV viewing data, NCS is expanding the size of its dataset. FourthWall gathers data on 1.4M households.

Black Arrow aims at ad exhaustion

August 19, 2014 1:14 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

There really aren’t enough advertisers with enough different targeted ads, which means some viewers often see the same ad over and over. BlackArrow has addressed the issue by adding support for audience-based frequency capping in its Advanced Advertising System.

Review: A closer look at streaming services, devices

August 19, 2014 11:47 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

While consumers don't need multiple devices for basic streaming services, some advanced features in Amazon's Fire TV require a Kindle Fire tablet or a Fire phone, while some Apple TV features work only with iPhones, iPads and Mac computers. Here's a closer look at how the Apple TV and the Fire TV work with other gadgets from Apple and Amazon. 

U-verse build-out reported stalled

August 18, 2014 1:37 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

AT&T’s U-verse build-out appears to be on at least temporary hold, leaving about 5 million homes passed still waiting for an upgrade. DSL Reports said it has confirmed the build-out is stalled – it calculates at about 28.2 million homes, on the way to 32.9 million.

Gore sues Al Jazeera America for unpaid millions

August 18, 2014 12:09 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Former Vice President Al Gore is suing Al Jazeera America, saying the news network is withholding tens of millions of dollars that it owes for buying Current TV from him and other shareholders for $500 million last year. David Boies, Gore's attorney, said in a statement that Al Jazeera America "wants to give itself a discount on the purchase price that was agreed to nearly two years ago." 

Report: Cable’s broadband subs out number video for 1st time

August 15, 2014 11:47 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The second quarter proved to be a milestone of sorts for the top cable operators across the nation. For the first time, the number of broadband subscribers exceeded the number of video subscribers among the largest cable operators in the nation, according to a report by Leichtman Research Group.

Mediacom tees up deal to carry SEC Networks

August 14, 2014 5:19 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

And then there were two. Just prior to Thursday's launch of the SEC Network, Mediacom Communications announced it had reached a carriage agreement with ESPN, which left Cablevision and Verizon FiOS as the remaining large service providers without SEC Network deals. With the deal, Mediacom subscribers, which include viewers in seven SEC states, joined more than 90 million homes across the nation that have access to the SEC Network.

RCN joins SEC Network roster

August 14, 2014 12:23 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

With the SEC Network set to make its debut later today, RCN announced this morning that it would be carrying the college sports action via a multi-year distribution agreement between the NCTC and the Walt Disney Company. As of this morning, Cablevision, Verizon FiOS and Mediacom Communications hadn’t struck deals with ESPN to carry the SEC Network.

TWC, BHN dive deeper into NBCUniversal TVE pool

August 14, 2014 12:02 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks can now offer up more TV Everywhere video content from NBCUniversal’s broadcast and cable networks to their subscribers. Time Warner Cable and Bright House authenticated subscribers now have access to live and on demand content from NBCUniversal’s suite of cable networks including USA Network, Syfy, Telemundo, Bravo, Oxygen, CNBC, MSNBC, NBC Sports Network, and Golf Channel.

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