Light Reading
Apple wants guaranteed service quality over Comcast's access network, according to a WSJ report.

Apple, Comcast in Streaming TV Talks – Report

Ray Le Maistre
3/24/2014
50%
50%

Apple is talking to Comcast about a partnership that would deliver a video streaming service to Apple TV users at guaranteed quality levels over the cable company's vast broadband network, according to a Wall Street Journal report.

According to the report, Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) is keen to guarantee a high-quality live and on-demand TV/video service to those who buy its tiny set-top box, and can't rely on the best-effort nature of the public Internet. As a result, it is in talks to secure a guaranteed quality of service from Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), which provides its cable services to more than 21 million US households.

The move is interesting for a number of reasons.

Apple has previously held similar talks with Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), which is set to be acquired by Comcast. (See Is Apple TV the New Cable Channel?, Comcast Strikes $45B Deal for TWC, and Comcast-TWC Deal: Playing All the Numbers.)

Comcast has previously been somewhat reluctant to team up with the OTT players, so these talks signify a change in attitude for the cable giant.

The rumors also come as Netflix CEO CEO Reed Hastings calls for tighter net neutrality rules to protect US Internet video providers against the "tolls" imposed by large ISPs for service delivery interconnections with broadband networks. (See Netflix CEO Wants 'Strong' Net Neutrality .)

Deals between OTT players, such as Netflix and Apple, and the communication service providers (CSPs) are becoming increasingly popular, and hove proven successful for both parties in markets such as the UK, where Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED) was the first to offer the BBC's iPlayer service over its network and now offers Netflix as a dedicated channel to its cable customers with TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO)-integrated cable boxes. (See Netflix to Spend Big, Strike Cable Deals in 2014 and Top European MSOs Embrace Next-Gen Video.)

— Ray Le Maistre, Circle me on Google+ Follow me on TwitterVisit my LinkedIn profile, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading

(15)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/27/2014 | 10:45:02 PM
Re: What's it worth
It's almost funny when you think about it. It seems like the phone & OS providers are the ones who control the market.
sam masud
50%
50%
sam masud,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/25/2014 | 3:08:41 PM
What's next?
Today it's ISP like Comcast striking deals on OTT video, but what's next? Admittedly, OTT tv is different because it's a bandwidth bog, but will the attention of Comcast next turn to other content providers (on-line multiplayer video gaming, maybe) whose sites prove to be popular with subscribers...
Joe Stanganelli
50%
50%
Joe Stanganelli,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/25/2014 | 11:26:21 AM
Re: What's it worth
And as for what Comcast gets out of the deal?  Presumably the clout to take on -- and throttle -- Google/YouTube, with a behemoth like Apple in its corner.
Ariella
50%
50%
Ariella,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/25/2014 | 7:10:26 AM
Re: What's it worth
@Pcharles09 I was thinking the exact same thing. In terms of world domination, two brands stands out: Google and Apple. 
pcharles09
50%
50%
pcharles09,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/24/2014 | 9:25:01 PM
Re: What's it worth
Comcast is trying to take over the world huh. What better partner to cozy up with than Apple. I guess Google was probably a close 2nd.
Mitch Wagner
50%
50%
Mitch Wagner,
User Rank: Lightning
3/24/2014 | 5:35:45 PM
Re: What's it worth
Even if Apple does build its own CDN, it needs to make it through that last mile to customers. That's where Comcast comes in. 
ScottEStewart0101
50%
50%
ScottEStewart0101,
User Rank: Lightning
3/24/2014 | 1:51:48 PM
Re: What's it worth
Like everything else that is spoken about Apple, this is purely speculation at this point. The article on WSJ doesn't name anyone in particular as a source. As to what this could mean, It "could" mean that Apple will get special treatment or QOS service for apple store traffic. OR - it could mean that Comcast is willing to allow AppleTV as a second set-top box, like the digital deals with Microsoft xBox360. The traffic issue on data caps would be dependent on the FCC/DOJ actually stepping in, which they currently have not, in any of these attempts to add what the tech community amounts to as a "troll toll". 

What will get consumers riled up will be if ONLY Apple 1st party content will be exempt from caps, but non-apple content running on the AppleTV device counts against the cap. (such as NetFlix/Hulu). At that point, Comcast could pull the rug out from under customer's feet and drop everyone's data caps down to 10-20Gb and say "use our partnered services, or pay 10$ overages". 
dwx
50%
50%
dwx,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/24/2014 | 1:16:53 PM
Re: What's it worth
There has been a longstanding I believe well-founded rumor Apple is building its own network/CDN ala Netflix.   My guess is if they reach some kind of deal and there won't be any transit/interconnection costs on either side.  The reality is Apple is still a pretty small player overall mainly due to the pay-per-view rather than a subscription model.  

I think this is very different from Comcast/Netflix.  If Apple is striking a deal to not affect bandwidth caps or get preferential service on Comcast's access network, that is going to start ringing Net Neutrality bells.   That type of setup is currently flying with ATT and its mobile networks, but I don't think the FCC long-term is going to allow it for home ISPs.  

 

 
Duh!
50%
50%
Duh!,
User Rank: Light Sabre
3/24/2014 | 12:02:53 PM
Re: Bandwidth transparency
Mari,

Good question. 

From an engineering perspective, I can think of at least three ways to keep a statistical floor on Best Effort performance in a DOCSIS serving group. 

From a regulatory perspective, the FCC would have to make Rules for Best Effort service performance.   Those would depend upon how much DC Circuit will let them  torture Sec. 706 of the Communications Act. 
Russo0
50%
50%
Russo0,
User Rank: Light Beer
3/24/2014 | 10:46:36 AM
What's it worth
What's it worth?   For transacational service like buying TV show on Apple TV, how about 10%?

$2.99 a 30 minute HD (~24 minute) show that $0.30 @ 2mbps ~ > $20 / mbps /month (assuming some # hours peak per day x 30 days)

But transit rates are < $1/mbps / month

OK, so 10% is too much....termination BW will cost a lot more, but that much more?

It's interesting to compare this Apple deal to the Comcast - Netflix.

 Comcast and Netflix have likely done a bulk deal....But Netflix is effectively buying QOS as well.   Sure Apple it says Apple will pay for QOS, but if Netflix is deliverying data up to Comcast's door, and Comcast is now accepting this traffic, effectively Netflix is purchasing QOS as well, as Comcast is not going to allow Netflix traffice to swamp their internal network.....

 
Page 1 / 2   >   >>
Flash Poll
From The Founder
It's clear to me that the communications industry is divided into two types of people, and only one is living in the real world.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
LRTV Documentaries
The Rise of Virtual CPE

1|27|15   |   01:38   |   (5) comments


As NFV strategies evolve from tests and trials to production telco networks, expect to hear a lot about virtual CPE (customer premises equipment) rollouts during 2015.
LRTV Documentaries
Optical Is Hot in 2015

1|23|15   |   01:56   |   (2) comments


Optical comms technology underpins the whole communications sector and there are some really hot trends set for 2015.
LRTV Custom TV
Policy Control in the Fast Lane

1|22|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


What's making policy control strategic in 2015 and beyond? Amdocs talks with Heavy Reading's Graham Finnie about the key factors driving change in the data services landscape. Find out what his policy management research reveals about the road ahead for policy control – and sign up for
LRTV Documentaries
Highlights From the 2020 Vision Executive Summit

1|21|15   |   4:33   |   (2) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading brought together telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Cisco's Doug Webster shared his company's ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Harmonic, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment with Huawei

1|20|15   |   5:42   |   (1) comment


At IBC, Peter Alexander, Senior Vice President & CMO at Harmonic, speaks about the growing interest in pay-TV service and its branching into multiple devices.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sony Marketing Director Olivier Bovis Discusses the Outlook for 4K and Cooperation With Huawei at IBC 2014

1|20|15   |   6:50   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Envivio, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment

1|20|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Pay-TV's Networked Future

1|20|15   |   6:29   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about the future of the pay-TV industry and its transition.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Jeff Heynen: Distributed Access Will Help MSOs Compete in the Future

1|20|15   |   2:26   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about moving to distributed access and the future trend of cable business.
LRTV Interviews
Cisco Talks Transformation

1|20|15   |   13:02   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Cisco VP of Products & Solutions Marketing Doug Webster at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Cisco's approach to network virtualization as well as how service providers can begin to monetize high-capacity networks through the end of the decade.
Upcoming Live Events
February 5, 2015, Washington, DC
February 19, 2015, The Fairmont San Jose, San Jose, CA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 9-10, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2-3, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
Infographics
Hot Topics
Google Continues Gigabit Expansion
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 1/27/2015
Comcast Apologizes to 'A**hole' Brown
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/29/2015
US Ops Spend $32.5M to Bring 4G to Chicago's Subways
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 1/30/2015
Cablevision's New WiFi Try – Freewheeling Enough?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 1/26/2015
Overture Builds on NFV Foundation
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/27/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Weekly Executive Interview
Join us live for Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, and Universal, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he has to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.