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

Charter refuses ads for TV antenna maker

March 22, 2013 1:22 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

A TV antenna maker wanted to use the competition's own medium — cable TV — for its anti-cable message. Now, officials at Antennas Direct say Charter Communications' refusal to air the ads is evidence of the cable industry's growing concern over antennas.

Genachowski resigns as FCC chairman

March 22, 2013 1:17 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The outgoing chairman’s tenure coincided with continued adoption of broadband and ever higher Internet connection speeds, especially on the wireless side. He approved Comcast's acquisition of NBC Universal, while blocking AT&T’s proposed acquisition of T-Mobile.

Study: Dish, Bright House earn high marks for customer experience

March 22, 2013 12:24 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Bright House Networks and Dish Network held down the top spots among the 10 companies surveyed for customer experience in the TV sector by Temkin Research Group. On the other hand, Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications were the lowest-rated TV companies in the 2013 Temkin experience ratings.

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More Bollywood for Cablevision subs

March 22, 2013 12:17 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cablevision today announced the availability of its Optimum Premier South Asian package, which will give its subscribers access to more Bollywood movies as well as entertainment programming, sports events and news shows in Hindi. The new international tier features nine channels, including the newly added South Asian-language channels Life OK, Star India Plus and Star India Gold.

GCI begins whole-home services

March 21, 2013 1:04 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

GCI has begun offering whole-home service, using DVRs from TiVo. The operator will provide its customers with the TiVo Premiere Q 4-tuner gateway DVR and TiVo Mini low-cost IP set-tops, with plans to offer the 6-tuner Pace XG1 gateway later this year.

Haigh steps over to Charter from Midcontinent

March 21, 2013 12:31 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

After more than 10 years at Midcontinent Communications, David Haigh will start his new job on Monday as Charter Communication’s regional vice president of inside plant. Haigh will be based in Madison, Wis. and will report to Sean Gallagher, vice president of corporate ISP.

Sigma Designs bows next-gen Z-Wave home control platform

March 21, 2013 12:19 pm | by Mike Robuck | Product Releases | Comments

System-on-a-chip (SoC) vendor Sigma Designs introduced its next-generation product portfolio, which is based on the Z-Wave wireless protocol, that was designed to improve the performance of home control devices. Sigma’s Z-Wave Next Gen product portfolio was designed for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and service providers interested in developing home control products and services. 

SeaChange reveals another Adrenalin customer

March 20, 2013 1:48 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Com Hem in Sweden will be using SeaChange’s Adrenalin back office system to support its forthcoming multiscreen service due for rollout later this year. Com Hem will use TiVo technology to deliver broadcast TV channels, VOD, catch-up TV and start-over for TiVo set-tops, LAN set-tops, smartphones and tablets.

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Comcast to open doors on new customer support center in Pa.

March 20, 2013 12:30 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Comcast announced this morning that it will open a new, state-of-the art customer support center this summer in Susquehanna Township, Dauphin County, which is near Harrisburg Pa. Comcast will fill 425 new jobs at the facility, which brings its total number of employees across the state to 12,000.

Intel offers reference for IPTV set-top

March 19, 2013 2:34 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Intel has a new reference design kit for set-top boxes  and media servers based on its own Atom CE5300 processor, Futarque’s DVB-T2/T/C broadcast and media sharing stacks, Videon Central’s aVia media engine, and Hillcrest Labs’ Freespace Motion Engine software.  

Broadpeak ups capacity of cache servers

March 19, 2013 2:20 pm | by Brian Santo | Product Releases | Comments

The company cranks up the streaming capacity of its BkS400 to a new maximum of 30 Gbps. The software upgrade to the company’s BkS400 video cache server and the attendant capacity expansion improves operators’ ability to deliver video content.

Liberty Media plunks down $2.62 billion for 27% stake in Charter

March 19, 2013 12:08 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

John Malone’s holding company, Liberty Media, has bought a 27.3 percent stake in Charter Communications for about $2.62 billion. The deal is slated to close in the first half or second quarter of this year. Liberty expects to fund the purchase with a combination of cash on hand and new loan arrangements.

S3 Group appoints O’Carroll to board

March 19, 2013 11:54 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

S3 Group announced that it has appointed former Rogers Communications executive Dermot O’Carroll to its board of directors. O’Carroll spent 17 years at Rogers Communications before retiring last year as senior vice president of network engineering and operations. 

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Disney, News Corp. finalizing plans for Hulu

March 18, 2013 2:14 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

At issue is whether Hulu should completely dedicate itself to the free streaming of TV shows with ads, or whether its value lies in paid subscriptions for viewers. Disney is said to prefer the ad-supported model, while News Corp. prefers a paid service. The two might put the operation back up for sale.

Comcast cues Ethernet up in Vermont communities

March 18, 2013 12:54 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Comcast Business announced today that over the coming weeks its Ethernet services would be available across six communities in Chittenden County, Vermont. The six towns in Chittenden County feature a large number of the state's businesses, ranging from snowboard manufacturers to global high technology. 

Virgin Media’s TV Anywhere gets a boost from Concurrent

March 18, 2013 12:48 pm | by Mike Robuck | Product Releases | Comments

Virgin Media has picked Concurrent to help it send more video to IP-connected devices through its Virgin TV Anywhere service. Virgin Media is using Concurrent’s MediaHawk content delivery network (CDN) platform to support its TV Everywhere service on computers, laptops, tablets and smartphones.

Cablevision promotes Pillai

March 18, 2013 12:40 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cablevision has promoted cable industry engineer Pragash Pillai to senior vice president, network management and operations. Prior to his new title, Pillai was senior vice president, digital network technology at Cablevision. Three years ago, Pillai came to Cablevision from Bresnan Communications.

Few breakout tech hits at SXSW

March 15, 2013 2:40 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

The event, which helped launch Twitter and FourSquare, was quieter on the technology front this year. There weren't any hot apps that everybody immediately downloaded, but Google showed its Google glasses (it didn’t let anyone actually use them), and Foursquare displayed a number of data-tracking bracelets.

Popcornflix available on Sony devices

March 14, 2013 1:50 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Sony Entertainment Network customers with Internet-connected Bravia TVs, Blu-ray players, and Blu-ray Home Theater devices can now access the Popcornflix for free. Popcornflix has been available to people who use Roku and Boxee set-tops.

Monroe supports Canada's alert system

March 14, 2013 1:35 pm | by Brian Santo | Product Releases | Comments

Monroe’s DASDEC emergency messaging platform and R189 One-Net Emergency Alert Systems (EAS) encoder/decoder systems provide comprehensive support for Canada's National Alert Aggregation and Dissemination (NAAD) system requirements. The former is designed for TV and radio broadcasters, the latter for cable, IPTV, and satellite providers.

Rogers’ security service rolls into Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe area

March 14, 2013 12:18 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Rogers Communications has expanded the availability of its Smart Home Monitoring service into Ontario’s Golden Horseshoe, which includes Hamilton, Oakville, Burlington, Niagara Falls, St. Catharines and other areas. Rogers was the first cable operator to launch a home automation and security platform in Canada in September of 2011.

Cablevision’s Maiella slides over to AMC Networks

March 14, 2013 12:13 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Starting next month, Jim Maiella will make the move from Cablevision to sister entity AMC Networks.  Maiella will be AMC’s senior vice president, corporate communications and will report to Ellen Kroner, executive vice president, communications and marketing.

Zenverge to bring MoCA on board

March 13, 2013 1:18 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The transcoding specialist, fresh off getting its chip adopted by Arris for a new gateway based on the Comcast RDK, is in the process of integrating Entropic’s MoCA circuitry into its products. Entropic is one of Zenverge's investors, along with Motorola and Verizon, among others.

ThinkAnalytics strengthens U.S. team with Pohl, Pingitore

March 13, 2013 12:23 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Multiplatform video search and recommendation vendor ThinkAnalytics, which is headquartered in London, continued to broaden its reach into the Untied States with the hiring of cable veteran Michael Pohl as its strategic director for marketing and business development. Pohl was also named as a member of ThinkAnalytic’s board.

TiVo Mini hits the market

March 11, 2013 2:26 pm | by Brian Santo | Product Releases | Comments

The unit is not itself a DVR, but used in conjunction with TiVo’s four-tuner DVRs. The TiVo Mini makes use of one of the DVR's tuners to provide viewers with the control and access of content on a TV in another room of the house. Users will even be able to start a show in the living room and finish it on a TiVo Mini in another room.

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