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

Energy-efficient set-tops have saved $168M in electric bills

August 28, 2014 1:31 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The movement to make cable CPE more energy-efficient has paid off, saving U.S. cable customers as much as $168 million in total on their energy bills. New set-top boxes use approximately 14 percent less energy than those previously used by service providers.

Comcast subscribers gain more TVE access to Pac-12 Networks

August 28, 2014 11:31 am | News | Comments

Thanks to an expanded agreement, Comcast’s subscribers now have more TV Everywhere access to the Pac-12 Networks’ programming. With the college season about to kick off, Comcast customers now have access to all seven Pac-12 Networks on their computers and mobile devices through the Pac-12 Now app and web portal.

Telefonica ups bid to create Brazil's top operator

August 28, 2014 10:31 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Spain's telecommunications company Telefonica has raised its offer to buy Brazilian operator Global Village Telecom, or GVT, from French media conglomerate Vivendi to 7.45 billion euros ($9.82 billion) from 6.7 billion euros previously. Telefonica S.A. said in a statement Thursday the offer includes 4.66 billion in cash and 12 percent of the share capital in the new company.  

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Former CEO Frankel resigns from Synacor’s board

August 27, 2014 5:08 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Former CEO Ron Frankel resigned from Synacor’s board of directors effective Aug. 25. Frankel had served on the board since 2001, which was also the same year he was named CEO. Frankel said in March that would be leaving his position as CEO, but would remain on the board and as an advisor. 

Chunghwa plans trial of 4K VOD

August 27, 2014 1:30 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The Taiwanese operator will be using Broadpeak's server and CDN manager solutions, and HwaCom set-top boxes. Chunghwa Telecom is looking to deliver 4K VOD and NVOD content, to a range of devices. VOD content will be unicast, while NVOD will be multicast.

WOW! Business doubles up service delivery team to serve commercial customers

August 27, 2014 12:31 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

WOW! Business announced this morning that it had streamlined and expanded its business service delivery team to better serve small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), enterprise and wholesale communications customers across its 19 markets. WOW Business’ 60-member service delivery team has doubled since the same time frame a year ago, and recently moved into a national service delivery center in Huntsville, Ala. 

Rogers, Shaw debut Netflix competitor

August 26, 2014 1:53 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

Rogers and Shaw have allied to launch a video streaming service in Canada that will compete directly against Netflix. The joint venture and the service will be called Showmi The companies said the content available will include 11,000 hours of television and 1,200 movies, with 30 per cent Canadian content.

FCC names network neutrality expert as CTO

August 26, 2014 1:11 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

UC Irvine professor Scott Jordan was named the new CTO of the FCC. For those who try to read tea leaves, Jordan’s appointment might be a signal that FCC chairman Tom Wheeler is serious about exploring the possibility of reclassifying broadband as a telecommunications service.

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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.

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.

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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.

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. 

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.

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