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

Verizon to publish data on phone records requests

December 20, 2013 12:25 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Verizon Communications Inc. says it will publish information on the number of requests for customer records it received from law enforcement agencies this year. The announcement Thursday from the largest U.S. cellphone carrier comes as debate over data-gathering by the National Security Agency intensifies in Washington.

Advisory panel recommends more oversight for NSA 


December 19, 2013 12:53 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

If President Barack Obama follows even half of the recommendations urged by his advisory panel, the National Security Agency would significantly change the way it does business. The collection of U.S. phone records and the spying on other governments and their citizens would continue. But Americans' phone records would be held by phone companies, not the NSA.

TWC updates app, adds Kindle devices

December 18, 2013 1:04 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Just in time for the holidays, Time Warner Cable has added support for Kindle tablets on its TWC TV app, and updated some features across Roku, Xbox and Samsung devices. The TWC TV app now works with Kindle Fire HD and HDX tablets for Time Warner Cable customers that subscribe to its “standard” or “preferred” video tiers.

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Suddenlink tabs Neustar for digital voice transition

December 16, 2013 12:40 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Neustar announced this morning that it was picked by Suddenlink Communications to support the cable operator’s digital voice transition. With the multi-year agreement, Neustar’s platform will be used to support Suddenlink’s order management as well as the provisioning of new and existing subscribers on its voice network.

AT&T’s GigaPower goes live in Austin

December 11, 2013 1:12 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Today AT&T officially launched its U-Verse GigaPower service in Austin, which came out of the starter’s blocks with symmetrical 300 Mbps speeds before ramping up to 1 Gbps next year. Customers who sign up for the 300 Mbps service will be upgraded to the 1 Gig speeds when they become available at no extra cost.

Samsung signs on for RDK

December 11, 2013 1:05 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Samsung Electronics America has signed up to license the Reference Design Kit from RDK Management in order to accelerate the development of its next generation set-top boxes and gateways. With Samsung on board, more than 100 silicon vendors, hardware OEMs, integrators, application developers, and service providers have licensed the RDK.

Cable One’s McKenna to retire

December 11, 2013 12:55 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

After nearly 19 years with Cable One, Jerry McKenna will retire from his role as senior vice president-chief sales and marketing officer at the end of the month. McKenna joined Cable One in 1994 as vice president-strategic marketing before being named senior vice president-chief sales and marketing officer five years ago.

Time Warner Cable rings up two new phone features

December 10, 2013 12:33 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable has added two new, free features to its phone service. The first, “Answer Anytime,” provisions home phone calls to mobile devices or office lines in order to not miss any calls while the second, “Selective Call Acceptance,” weeds out unwanted callers.

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TWC’s Marcus balks at debt-fueled deals

December 10, 2013 12:23 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Incoming Time Warner Cable Inc. CEO Rob Marcus said Monday that the company's current debt level is "prudent," even as other cable TV companies are reportedly examining adding debt to acquire it. Marcus, the chief operating officer who will replace Glenn Britt as chief executive on Jan. 1, told an investor conference in New York that the company's target of having debt that is 3.25 times its cash flow is appropriate.

In the media: Comcast lines up JPMorgan to advise on possible TWC bid

December 9, 2013 12:39 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

The plot has thickened once again in the ongoing story of Time Warner Cable being bought out by another cable operator. Reuters reported that Comcast has turned to JPMorgan Chase & Co. for its expertise in case it decides to throw a bid on Time Warner Cable

Time Warner Cable promotes Lee to SVP, mergers and acquisitions

December 6, 2013 12:40 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Time Warner Cable announced this morning that Christian Lee had been promoted to senior vice president, mergers and acquisitions effective Dec. 31. Separately, Rob Marcus, who will take over the reins of the company on Jan. 1, said in a Bloomberg story that he was “the perfect guy to manage the M&A component out there.”

AT&T reduces fees for people who bring own devices

December 6, 2013 12:25 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

AT&T is joining T-Mobile in reducing monthly fees for people who pay for their own devices. It's the latest break from a longstanding practice of offering subsidies on devices to lock customers into two-year service agreements. 

Michigan senate votes to ease ability to drop land lines

December 6, 2013 12:21 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Phone companies would have an easier time discontinuing traditional land lines in Michigan under legislation approved Thursday that supporters say recognizes technological change but critics contend could leave customers with less reliable service.

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TWC hires former Insight exec as new COO

December 5, 2013 12:56 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Despite swimming in a shark tank of potential suitors, Time Warner Cable announced this morning that former Insight Communications executive Dinni Jain would be joining the company on Jan. 13. Jain, who was chief operating officer and president of Insight prior to Time Warner Cable’s purchase of the company last year, will join Time Warner Cable as chief operating officer (COO.)

Shaw president postpones retirement

December 4, 2013 12:43 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Faced with increased competition from the likes of Netflix and Telus, as well as a mandated move to unbundling, Shaw Communications president Peter Bissonette has postponed his retirement. Bissonette will stay onboard until 2015 and has also assumed responsibility for Shaw’s regulatory and government affairs activities.

CSG picks up some Volubill assets

December 4, 2013 12:37 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Billing vendor CSG International announced this morning that it had purchased some of the assets of Volubill. According to media reports, Volubill was put into compulsory liquidation and receivership on Oct. 29 in France. Financial terms weren’t available.

Increasing the competitive edge for cable MSOs through investments in transformation

December 2, 2013 1:51 pm | by Bob Titus, vice president, global converged solutions, NetCracker Technology | Articles | Comments

Cable MSOs are ready for fierce competition. They are making significant investments in their network infrastructure to be positioned for a high-bandwidth, mobile-integrated, multi-screen world. In this world, digital distribution is as important a line of business as traditional linear broadcast, so. MSOs are increasing investment in on-demand, next-generation broadband services as well as improved customer experience.

BlackBerry shakeup continues as COO, CFO depart

November 25, 2013 12:43 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

BlackBerry's interim chief executive has shaken up BlackBerry's management team in a move seen as prelude to him taking the top job himself. Chief Operating Officer Kristian Tear and Chief Marketing Officer Frank Boulben, both hired by recently ousted CEO Thorsten Heins, will leave the struggling smartphone maker.

Media: Comcast mulls offer on TWC, Charter gears up for bid

November 22, 2013 1:03 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

While Charter Communications and Liberty Media’s John Malone are reportedly lining up funding for a bid to buy Time Warner Cable, Comcast is checking into the possible regulatory hurdles it could face should it choose to purse the nation’s second-largest cable operator. CNBC reported that Comcast was asking for guidance on anti-trust and other potentia telecommunications issues that would be associated with a bid for TWC.

Jury orders Samsung to pay Apple $290 million

November 22, 2013 12:45 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

A Silicon Valley jury added $290 million more to the damages Samsung Electronics owes Apple for copying vital iPhone and iPad features, bringing the total amount the South Korean technology titan is on the hook for to $930 million. The verdict covers 13 older Samsung devices that a previous jury found were among 26 Samsung products that infringed Apple patents.

FCC Chair pushing for phone networks to go all-IP

November 22, 2013 12:38 pm | by Ben Munson, Wireless Week | News | Comments

Tom Wheeler said that the Technology Transitions Policy Task Force—assembled by former FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski at the behest of AT&T and NTCA—will present a status update at the Dec. 12 Commission meeting. With that research in hand, Wheeler expects the FCC by January to draft an order concerning experimentation, data collection, and policy, legal and technical outlines for the IP transition agenda.

Harmonic snags two Cisco execs

November 20, 2013 12:39 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Harmonic has hired former Cisco sales executives Frank Montalto and Spencer Hodson. Montalto is now Harmonic’s regional vice president for North American cable and telco while Hodson joined the company as vice president of sales strategy, operations, and enablement.

Bright House Networks chalks up customer win with university

November 19, 2013 12:31 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

Bright House Networks Business Solutions has landed a deal to provide its services to Florida Polytechnic University, which is slated to open its doors next fall. As part of the agreement, Bright House Networks will provide Florida Polytechnic University, a science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) school, metro Ethernet, dedicated Internet Access, hosted voice and video services.

Cable Center picks 6 for Hall of Fame

November 19, 2013 12:27 pm | by Mike Robuck | News | Comments

This morning the Cable Center announced the newest members to its Cable Hall of Fame. The six inductees will be honored during the annual Cable Hall of Fame Celebration, which will be held in conjunction with The Cable Show in Los Angeles on April 29.

Vonage closes on $130M acquisition of Vocalocity

November 18, 2013 12:30 pm | by Associated Press | News | Comments

Vonage has closed on its $130 million acquisition of fellow cloud-based communications company Vocalocity Inc. The deal, announced last month, includes $105 million in cash and $25 million in Vonage stock. It increases Vonage's presence in the small- and medium-sized business market.

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