Light Reading

DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
11/21/2012
50%
50%

Welcome to the broadband and cable news roundup.

  • DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV) has introduced a satellite broadband bundle that supports maximum speeds of 12 Mbit/s downstream and 3 Mbit/s upstream, but the service's strict usage caps make it less than a video streamer's delight. Targeted primarily at rural areas with limited access to wired broadband services, the service, powered by ViaSat Inc. (Nasdaq: VSAT)'s new Exede platform, includes a high-end US$129.99-per-month tier with a data cap of 25GB. The service's data policy does offer some relief for customers who surf and stream during off-peak hours -- data usage is not counted from midnight to 5 a.m. in the customer's local time zone. Customers who exceed their monthly caps are subject to speed throttling, but they also have the option to purchase more data in 1GB increments.

    In a promo good through Feb. 6, DirecTV is offering a $10 discount on all tiers and waiving the $49.99 set-up fee for the first 12 months, if customers sign a two-year contract. DirecTV also has broadband and voice bundles available with several telco partners, including AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) and CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL). Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) launched a similar package with ViaSat in January.

  • Cox Communications Inc. confirmed a Multichannel News report that the cable operator will offer more than 90 linear TV channels on via its IP-based Cox TV Connect app before the end of the year. Cox TV Connect debuted about a year ago, starting with 35 channels on the iPhone. The report says that Cox will soon add support for the iPad, with Android devices on tap for the first half of 2013. Until out-of-home rights are obtained, access to live TV via the Cox TV Connect app is limited to the reach of the customer's home Wi-Fi signal. (See Cox to Stream Live TV to Tablets .)

  • Eastlink of Canada is using Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)'s Videoscape, the vendor's managed multi-screen video platform, to power Eastlink to Go, an over-the-top TV Everywhere service for PCs, laptops, tablets and smartphones. The service will support both on-demand and live TV programming.

  • An update to the Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) Xfinity TV Player app for iOS and Android devices has added an option that lets users download selected titles from Showtime Networks Inc. and Starz Entertainment LLC and watch them on the go, reports Engadget.

  • BC Partners and CPP Investment Board have completed their $6.6 billion purchase of Suddenlink Communications , a deal that includes a $1.985 billion investment by the firms. Suddenlink's management team, led by Chairman and CEO Jerry Kent, was also in on the deal, which was announced in July. (See CEO Joins $6.6B Bid for Suddenlink .)

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable



    (8)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:21 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    The capabilities of satellite broadband have come a long way, but the caps would make it a tough sell for me unless I lived in the sticks and had no other option. It won't take much to eat through these caps.  The other options are 15GB for $69.99/month and 10GB for $39.99 per month (with the promotional discount from DirecTV).  JB

    shygye75
    50%
    50%
    shygye75,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:21 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    Jeff -- What's the rationale for the exorbitant price? Is it a capacity issue?

    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:20 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    I'd have to check with them to be sure since they don't offer a line in the FAQ that addresses: Why are we so damn expensive?  :)


    but I suppose capacity and those sunk infrastructure costs for this new, higher-speed system do come into play as well as the required home equipment. However, customers already get hit with a one-time set-up fee of $149.99 (though it's "on special" for $49.99 these days), and they also include a $9.99/month lease fee... so they appear to be covering their bases there. JB


     

    shygye75
    50%
    50%
    shygye75,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:18 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    It would be interesting (love that word) to know the why behind the massive price. Maybe it's "all of the above" (bird cost, hardware on the ground, limited capacity, etc.) but it sure smells like a take-it-or-stick-to-your-two-tin-cans-and-a-string approach, which can't sit well with customers no matter how many head of cattle they own.

    paolo.franzoi
    50%
    50%
    paolo.franzoi,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:17 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    Jeff,


    Why do you believe that LTE is a lower cost for this than DSL for the Telcos or DOCSIS for MSOs?


    seven


     

    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:17 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    I wasn't trying to make a direct cost analysis here; just noting that LTE seems to be getting a closer look in markets where a service like sat. broadband makes more sense. JB


     


     

    Jeff Baumgartner
    50%
    50%
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:17 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    Yes, they do have some people in rural areas over a barrel on this one. But it does make me wonder if this could make LTE a viable competitive option in these broadband-deprived markets for the wireless guys, especially Verizon and its HomeFusion product. JB

    paolo.franzoi
    50%
    50%
    paolo.franzoi,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:17:16 PM
    re: DirecTV's 12-Meg Bundle Comes With Caps


    There is definitely an investment bias towards wireless in Telcos.  My take is that both Verizon and AT&T see it as a long term replacement for POTS.  


    Now my parents happen to have satellite broadband and I will ask them who their provider is.  They chose it over cable which is available (DSL is not although they are very close to an old 80D cabinet - within DSL reach of it).  The reason is that in their area the cable guys want to charge them for construction costs from the road to their house.  They just wanted something better than dial-up and so it was a lot cheaper than paying for the construction costs.


    seven


     

    Flash Poll
    From The Founder
    Network architects aiming to upgrade their networks to support agile, open, virtualized services in the 21st century need to consider new criteria when choosing between technology suppliers.
    Live Streaming Video
    BTE 2015 Sponsor Keynote: HP
    Dr. Prodip Sen, CTO, Network Functions Virtualization, HP
    LRTV Custom TV
    Red Hat Demo

    7|2|15   |   10:53   |   (0) comments


    Red Hat's Nicolas Lemieux demonstrates how Red Hat is driving innovation through open source communities.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Red Hat's Approach to OpenStack Adoption

    7|2|15   |   5:17   |   (0) comments


    Red Hat's Radhesh Balakrishnan outlines his company's open source strategy for both enterprises and telcos.
    LRTV Custom TV
    The New IP Goes Mobile With vEPC

    7|2|15   |   1:12   |   (0) comments


    Heavy Reading's Gabriel Brown discusses results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade that shows a clear commitment by mobile operators to move quickly to virtual EPC deployment.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Making Business Sense of SDN

    7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


    Results of a Brocade-sponsored survey show that CSPs have a clear sense of SDN use cases but are wrestling with the business case. Sterling Perrin of Heavy Reading looks behind the numbers.
    LRTV Custom TV
    NFV Will Be Here Sooner Than You Think

    7|2|15   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


    Forget the usual ten-year cycle for new technologies – NFV will be a core part of CSP networks in five years, based on results of a Brocade-sponsored survey, says Heavy Reading's Caroline Chappell.
    LRTV Custom TV
    The New IP Gains Traction With CSPs

    7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


    Roz Roseboro of Heavy Reading analyzes results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade showing that CSPs are getting serious about making the transition to the New IP era.
    LRTV Custom TV
    It's (Real) Time for Analytics

    7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


    Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges looks at how CSPs say they plan to use analytics to deploy new services in real time as part of The New IP, based on results of a survey sponsored by Brocade.
    LRTV Documentaries
    IoT in Action

    6|30|15   |   1:39   |   (8) comments


    Two co-workers discuss the benefits of IoT technology.
    LRTV Interviews
    Ericsson Opens Up on OPNFV

    6|30|15   |   14:16   |   (2) comments


    Martin Bäckström, VP and head of industry area Datacom at Ericsson, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the emergence of OPNFV, the importance of standards and Ericsson's OPNFV plans.
    LRTV Custom TV
    NetNumber Founder Discusses NFV/SDN Impact on SP Networks

    6|26|15   |   4:15   |   (0) comments


    NetNumber Founder Doug Ranalli examines why SPs need a new network infrastructure for service agility. While NFV and SDN are the tools, the old ways of thinking about signaling control are inhibitors. Doug provides his recommendations.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Orchestrating NFV vCPE Services Across Multivendor Networks

    6|26|15   |   5:46   |   (0) comments


    Nirav Modi provides an overview of vCPE, the fastest-growing NFV use case, showing how Cyan's Blue Planet orchestrates vCPE services across a multivendor infrastructure to rapidly deliver new managed services for business customers.
    LRTV Custom TV
    ZTE at LTE Summit Amsterdam 2015

    6|26|15   |     |   (0) comments


    As one of the leading global telecommunications providers, ZTE presented its cutting-edge technology at LTE World Summit 2015 in Amsterdam. On display at ZTE's booth were the latest R&D achievements in wireless, 5G development, HetNet, deep convergence of FDD and TDD, and RCS/IMD/iSDN/vCN.
    Upcoming Live Events
    September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
    September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
    October 6, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
    October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
    October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
    November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
    All Upcoming Live Events
    Infographics
    Hot Topics
    Who's Feeding Fiber to LinkNYC Hotspots?
    Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/29/2015
    What's a Gigabit Good For?
    Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/1/2015
    Colt to Jettison Ailing IT Business
    Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/30/2015
    Eurobites: Activist Investor Takes Stake in AlcaLu
    Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 6/30/2015
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed
    Webinar Archive
    BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
    Casa Systems has been going from strength to strength over the last couple of years. In 2013, it became the first vendor to ship an integrated CCAP device -- the ...
    Cedrik Neike, SVP of Global Service Provider, Service Delivery, at Cisco, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about solving service provider customer problems in a virtualized, DevOps world, including multivendor support and the future of network procurement.
    Cats with Phones