Light Reading

Cox Flirts With Fanhattan

Mari Silbey
7/1/2013
50%
50%

Here's one for the history books. Cox Communications Inc. is testing an IPTV service in Orange County, Calif. with the Fanhattan Fan TV set-top. Dubbed flareWatch, the service includes 97 channels and 30 hours of cloud DVR storage. It comes with a beta price of only US$34.99 per month.

While limited to Cox broadband subscribers, the flareWatch trial is nonetheless remarkable on several fronts. Participants don't have to bundle flareWatch with a traditional TV package, and yet it still includes top stations like ESPN, Disney and Discovery. (Free on-demand content is "coming soon".) The network DVR feature means the service could be extended to mobile devices. And the tiny little Fan TV box includes Fanhattan's own user interface and supports all kinds of IP applications, giving Cox the option of exploring new Internet service partnerships in the future.

Spokesperson Todd Smith says Cox is "testing the delivery of existing programming content via a unique user interface from Fanhattan. Cox High Speed Internet customers plug their broadband connection into Fanhattan's device and then connect to their TV."

From a business model perspective, the most interesting aspect of flareWatch may be what it represents for the broader cable industry. Once cable companies start delivering TV like an Internet app, regional footprints become entirely artificial. Cable operators will ultimately have to decide if they want to compete with each other on a national basis for TV subscribers.

In the short term, the flareWatch pilot is a big win for Fanhattan. The company debuted its media streamer hardware and fancy touch-sensitive remote at the end of May, and announced plans to partner directly with the pay-TV community. It wasn't clear at the time, however, if those plans were realistic or merely wishful thinking. The Cox deal is a good, if still early sign. (See Fan TV Courts Cable for New Box.)

— Mari Silbey, Special to Light Reading Cable

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
gconnery
50%
50%
gconnery,
User Rank: Light Sabre
7/10/2013 | 8:52:52 PM
re: Cox Flirts With Fanhattan
As others have said, who cares? Until TWC can send their service into a Comcast Broadband household (or Cox or CVC or...) and there is extra competition as a result of this, its just another way to package the same thing.

If everything were available on demand day of then a DVR wouldn't be required and this MIGHT be a great way to get a decent UI out of TWC without using a cable box. But that probably won't be how this plays out.
dwx
50%
50%
dwx,
User Rank: Light Sabre
7/2/2013 | 1:45:55 PM
re: Cox Flirts With Fanhattan
The content owners want strict control over how their content is delivered and there are rules regarding things like re-transmission of content. They can stream their shows OTT as they see fit (see Hulu, Netflix's original content) but MSO/TV operators are not allowed to unless the customer is on-net, like your example in Canada. Aereo? is getting around the re-broadcasting by using an OTA antenna for every subscriber, but they can only offer channels available OTA.
Davidyyz
50%
50%
Davidyyz,
User Rank: Light Beer
7/2/2013 | 1:55:54 AM
re: Cox Flirts With Fanhattan
Would that be allowed in the US if an MSO tried to that that? We have a few independent ISPs who have launched IPTV to compete with the incumbent cable and telco companies in Canada, and they wanted to offer it as an OTT service but they weren't allowed. The licenses awarded to these new IPTV providers require them to offer the service with their broadband service only, even though the provider is more than willing to offer the service with another broadband provider.
dwx
50%
50%
dwx,
User Rank: Light Sabre
7/1/2013 | 7:13:39 PM
re: Cox Flirts With Fanhattan
We are a long ways away from MSOs offering TV service outside of their local market, although I'm sure some would love to do so. This is contained to the local market of a single MSO and requires an Internet connection to that MSO in that market.

I am going to guess the offering of stations like ESPN which wants everyone to use their own apps to watch over IP and gets per-user subscriber fees might be short-lived.
Flash Poll
From The Founder
Ericsson's Hyperscale Datacenter System (HDS) 8000, featuring Intel's Rack Scale Architecture, caused a stir when it was announced at MWC 2015. For more on this revolutionary product, join me on Thursday, April 30 at 12:00 p.m. EST for a Super Webinar event, A New Hardware Paradigm for the Telco Data Center.
LRTV Documentaries
CableLabs' Clarke Updates Cable Virtualization

4|23|15   |   05:41   |   (1) comment


Former BT exec now leading CableLabs' NFV and SDN efforts explains key role of open source and updates efforts to virtualize the home network.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson's CTO Talks Transformation: Pt. II

4|23|15   |   08:19   |   (1) comment


In the second installment of an in-depth two-part interview, Ericsson's CTO Ulf Ewaldsson talks to Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders about cultural change, network slicing and technology advances.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson's CTO Talks Transformation: Pt. I

4|23|15   |   09:27   |   (3) comments


In the first installment of an in-depth two-part interview, Ericsson's CTO Ulf Ewaldsson talks to Light Reading CEO and founder Steve Saunders about the incredible transformation underway in the communications networking industry.
LRTV Documentaries
LTE Paves the Way for the 5G Revolution

4|20|15   |   4:20   |   (0) comments


Håkan Andersson, head of 5G product strategy of the Radio Business Unit at Ericsson, discusses the role of LTE, the US and other industry verticals in building a true 5G ecosystem.
LRTV Documentaries
The 3GPP's Road to 5G Standardization

4|17|15   |   4:43   |   (0) comments


Satoshi Nagata, chairman of the 3GPP's TSG-RAN group and a manager at NTT Docomo, explains the standardization process for 5G, as well as the biggest challenges and opportunities.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu CTO Makes the Case for a New 5G Air Interface

4|16|15   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Michael Peeters, CTO of wireless at Alcatel-Lucent, explains why 5G will require a new air interface to meet its diverse performance targets.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu + Nokia: The New Uber-Vendor

4|15|15   |   2:42   |   (4) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Gabriel Brown discusses the technological and competitive opportunities and challenges if a merger between Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia comes to pass.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Data Center Power Play

4|15|15   |   6:22   |   (0) comments


Huawei has developed industry-leading energy efficiency capabilities for its indoor and outdoor data center solutions, explains Dr. Fang Liangzhou, vice president of Huawei's Network Energy product Line.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Routers, Switches Get the Green Mark

4|15|15   |   2:02   |   (0) comments


TUV Rheinland's Frank Dudley explains how Huawei's routers and switches have been successfully tested by energy efficiency experts and have gained Green Mark Certification.
LRTV Documentaries
A Finn, a Frenchman & a Guy From New Jersey Walk Into a Merger...

4|15|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


Stop us if you've heard this one before... Light Reading CEO Founder & CEO Steve Saunders weighs in on the technical and cultural implications of a Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent merger.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accounting for Better Solutions

4|10|15   |   02:31   |   (1) comment


Murad Yousuf, CTO at Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Finance (Dept. of Zakat & Income Tax), talks about the benefits of deploying router technology from Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
What's in Store for Huawei & DataCore?

4|10|15   |   05:44   |   (0) comments


At the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Germany, George Teixeira, CEO of software-defined storage (SDS) specialist DataCore Software, explains why he has just signed a partnership agreement with Huawei Technologies.
Upcoming Live Events
May 6, 2015, Georgia World Congress, Atlanta, GA
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
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
In its latest survey covering network operators' plans and strategies for ICT transformation, Heavy Reading asked telecom operators worldwide to identify the most important goals and objectives for their ICT transformation initiatives. Heavy Reading also asked operators about the importance of a "digital first" strategy, which enables customers to complete an interaction across different digital channels, such as web and mobile self-service and social media.
Hot Topics
Comcast Formally Ends Its Bid for TWC
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/24/2015
What if the Comcast Merger Fails?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/20/2015
Google's WiFi-First Mobile Service 'Fi' Is Here
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 4/22/2015
Comcast Merger May Hinge on Hulu
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/22/2015
Google Ready to Release Thousands of Loons
Sarah Thomas, Editorial Operations Director, 4/20/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Many leading communications companies can claim to have undergone significant periods of reinvention during their histories, but none have been through more major ...
Data Center Interconnect, or DCI, is one of the hottest sectors in telecom currently. Since coming back to Light Reading last year, prodigal-son style, I've ...
Cats with Phones
Learning Curve Click Here
Pierre could never remember how to use Excel.
Latest Comment