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

Apple's smartphone on slippery slope

July 26, 2013 11:58 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Apple's share of the global smartphone market fell during the second quarter to its lowest level in four years, according to data released Friday. Apple took 13.1 percent of the worldwide market, according to ABI Research, down from 16.6 percent a year ago.

Britt to retire from TWC at year’s end; Marcus to take the helm

July 25, 2013 4:15 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable chairman and CEO Glenn Britt will retire at the end of the year. Time Warner Cable’s board announced Thursday afternoon that Robert Marcus was elected to succeed Britt as the company’s new chairman and CEO. Britt, 64, will stay on Time Warner Cable’s board in a non-executive role after he retires. 

It takes a 'war room' to launch Netflix's series

July 25, 2013 9:11 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Netflix's Internet video subscription service works around the clock, but it's unusual for more than two dozen of the company's engineers and top managers to be huddled in a conference room at 10:30 on a midsummer Wednesday evening. Netflix Inc. invited The Associated Press to its Los Gatos, Calif., headquarters for an unprecedented glimpse at the technical preparations that go into the release of its original programming. 

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Time Warner Cable, CBS agree on new extension

July 25, 2013 8:50 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

With the clock ticking last night on a new retransmission contract between Time Warner Cable and CBS, the two companies announced an extension that runs through 5 p.m. Monday. The second extension was announced at 11 p.m. EDT last night ahead of the  9 a.m. deadline on Thursday.

Time Warner Cable launches new web portal

July 24, 2013 11:25 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Stick a fork in Time Warner Cable’s former Road Runner website now that the nation’s second-largest cable operator has launched a new web portal. The new web portal, TWC Central, collects news, product and services information, social networking and entertainment on to one site under Time Warner Cable’s brand.

Exclusive: Cox digs in on first FTTH project in O.C.

July 24, 2013 11:10 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cox Communications has embarked on its first fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) project in a new housing development in south Orange County, Calif. Cox is installing fiber for the Rancho Mission Viejo development with the first phase comprised of 1,000 homes.

AT&T revenue up, profit down as costs rise in 2Q

July 24, 2013 10:58 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

The surge in tablet usage, a trade-in promotion and a fee tacked onto bills helped boost AT&T's wireless revenue for the latest quarter, but profits declined as costs surged, the company said Tuesday. AT&T's coffers were drained by smartphone sales, which it subsidizes in the hope of making money back over the life of two-year contracts.

Polka: Fight for the future; fight for your rights

July 23, 2013 2:32 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

CED caught up with American Cable Association president Matt Polka at the recent Cable Show, who in a free-wheeling conversation talked about what to expect at the Independent Show including; how broadband and over-the-top might be the future for smaller operators, and whether Congress and the FCC are ever going to provide smaller ops with some relief from the pressures they’re experiencing.

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Independent Show: NCTC CEO Fickle serves up a preview

July 23, 2013 2:24 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

National Cable Television Cooperative president and CEO Rich Fickle marked his second-year anniversary at the helm last month. Fickle and the NCTC’s 950 affiliate members, along with the American Cable Association, will gather in sunny San Diego next week for The Independent Show, and Fickle provided CED with a preview of hot topics.

Telefonica agrees to buy Germany's E-Plus from KPN

July 23, 2013 12:17 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Spain's Telefonica has agreed to buy German mobile unit E-Plus from Dutch telecommunications company Royal KPN NV for 5 billion euros ($6.58 billion) plus shares, a deal that would create Germany's biggest cellphone operator in terms of customers. The proposed deal announced Tuesday would bring together E-Plus with O2.

TWC updates app with troubleshooting, other new features

July 22, 2013 12:35 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable has added some new bells and whistlers to its MY TWC app, which included a new feature that lets residential users troubleshoot their triple play services. With the fourth update to the app, Time Warner Cable subscribers can also get up to the minute service alerts in their area and view real-time account information directly from their phone or tablet.

Apple buys startups to improve mobile maps

July 22, 2013 12:19 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Apple has bought online mapping services HopStop and Locationary as part of its ongoing effort to create a more formidable alternative to Google's navigation system. The acquisitions confirmed Friday give Apple Inc. more tools to round out the maps that it embeds in the mobile operating system running its iPhones and iPads

GCI launches new business website

July 18, 2013 3:52 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Anchorage-based General Communications Inc. (GCI) took the wraps off a new business services website this week to help its customers learn more about its technologies and services. On the new site, GCI’s business customers can reference case studies from businesses such as Jack White Real Estate, CIRI Alaska Tourism and Associated General Contractors, among others.

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Suddenlink launches voicemail to email service

July 18, 2013 11:58 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Suddenlink Communications started rolling out a voicemail to email service earlier this month and expects to have it fully deployed over the coming weeks. The “Voicemail to Email” service is free to Suddenlink customers that subscribe to its phone and voicemail service.

Verizon to introduce installment plans for phones

July 18, 2013 11:48 am | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Verizon Wireless, the country's largest cellphone carrier, on Thursday said it's joining AT&T and T-Mobile in providing an installment plan for its phones, aiming to satisfy customers who want to upgrade their devices faster or avoid paying the upfront cost of their phones.

Bright House Networks dials up hosted voice for SMBs

July 17, 2013 12:23 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Bright House Networks Business Solutions is now offering small and medium-sized businesses a cloud-based VoIP service. The turnkey Hosted Voice service provides businesses with all of the necessary hardware, technology and tech support for one monthly price. Hosted voice gives SMBs a feature rich service without the need for using their own IT resources, or buying the equipment.

Casa notches large-scale CCAP deployment in China

July 15, 2013 12:38 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Casa Systems has racked up another customer win for its converged cable access platform (CCAP) with one of China’s largest cable operators. Guangzhou Digital Media Group, which is located in the city of Guangzhou, had previously signed on with Casa to use its C10G platform, and will now combine it with Casa’s DS8x96 module.

Comcast promotes Daisey to area vice president, Sacramento Valley

July 12, 2013 12:42 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Comcast recently promoted BJ Daisey to the position of area vice president, Sacramento Valley. Daisey, who started out as an installer at Comcast, previously held the position of director of technical operations in Comcast’s West Division.

You're paying to have your own phone tapped

July 11, 2013 1:23 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Paid for by U.S. tax dollars, but with little public scrutiny, surveillance fees charged in secret by technology and phone companies can vary wildly. AT&T, for example, imposes a $325 "activation fee" for each wiretap and $10 a day to maintain it.  Cricket and U.S. Cellular charge only about $250 per wiretap. Verizon charges the government $775 for the first month and $500 each month after that.

In the media: Malone says more cable deals necessary

July 11, 2013 12:21 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cable pioneer and Liberty Media chairman John Malone believes there needs to be a wave of consolidation among large cable operators in order to achieve economies of scale. Malone, who was interviewed by a Reuter’s reporter during a conference in Sun Valley, Idaho, pointed at Time Warner Cable as a potential buyer.

Time Warner Cable launches Lifeline telephony

July 10, 2013 1:29 pm | by Brian Santo | News | Comments

The Lifeline program, administered by the FCC, grants eligible individuals per household a monthly credit on their residential home phone bill. Eligible customers can now apply for the home phone discount. TWC’s Lifeline program for Home Phone customers is now available as a pilot program throughout its footprint in New York State.

Cox/Verizon bundles touch down in the Gulf Coast

July 10, 2013 12:59 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Cox Communications and Verizon Wireless have launched their combined offering of cable, phone, Internet and wireless services in the Gulf Coast area, which includes South Louisiana and the Florida Panhandle. The bundling deal, which was first announced in December of 2011, allows subscribers to pick their service preferences from a range of offers that include video, Internet, home phone and 4G LTE wireless services.

BCI wraps up James Cable deal; adds Gerry to advisory board

July 9, 2013 12:51 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

CI Broadband announced yesterday that it had completed its deal to buy James Cable, which was first announced in April. BCI Broadband, which was formed by former executives from Bresnan Communications, also announced that it has added cable pioneer Alan Gerry to its advisory board. 

Big disconnect: Telcos abandon copper phone lines

July 8, 2013 12:48 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

For most people, the phone line's demise will have little impact. But there are pockets of the country where copper lines are still critical for residents. As a result, state regulators and consumer advocates are increasingly concerned about how the transition will unfold.

Rogers to launch customer loyalty program

July 3, 2013 11:38 am | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

In an effort to keep its subscribers from churning away, Rogers Communications announced this morning that it would launch a customer loyalty program in key markets this summer. The program, which is called “Rogers First Rewards,” allows Rogers customers to earn points that can be redeemed online for discounts on Rogers’ products and services.

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