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Netflix Privacy Concerns May Spark Lawsuit

Light Reading
LR Cable News Analysis
Light Reading

Happy Friday, cable gang. Leading today's roundup is word that Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) faces a potential class-action lawsuit involving privacy concerns.

  • While some subscribers may find Netflix recommendations useful, its practice of retaining data about users' movie rental history has resulted in a potential class-action lawsuit. (See Netflix Shopping for Original TV Series.)

  • Add Cox Communications Inc. to the list of pay-TV providers with an app for Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL)’s iPad and iPhone, and Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) Android devices. Cox's version starts off with features that let subs remotely manage their DVRs and e-mail and voice-mail accounts. (See Everyone's Mad About the iPad .)

    Here's a screenshot of the TV/DVR feature for the iPad version:

  • Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) is the latest vendor to test the limits of Docsis 3.0 by demonstrating the bonding of 48 downstream channels and producing downstream bursts of greater than 1.5 Gbit/s, just outpacing the 1.4 Gbit/s Get of Norway tested earlier this year. (See Get Tests 1.4-Gig Speeds, , Cisco Aiming to One-Up Cable's Upstream , KDG, Cisco Hit 1Gig Cable Modem Speeds , Korean ISP Bonds With 800-Meg D3 Test and Cox, Moto Test 400Mbit/s Docsis 3.0 Upstream.)

  • SeaChange International Inc. (Nasdaq: SEAC)'s move to focus on software and play down its hardware business continues to pay off for the digital video firm. The company posted fourth-quarter revenues of US$61.4 million, up 16 percent, while notching net income of $10.9 million. Revenues for servers and storage, per the company's new strategy, dropped $3.5 million, to $8.8 million, year-on-year. Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED) and Cox Communications Inc. were SeaChange's 10 percent-or-greater customers in the quarter. (See SeaChange Ships Some Server Costs Overseas .)

  • AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) is cracking down on customers who try to tether their phones to laptops to surf the Web on a bigger screen. (See AT&T Intros Mobile Data Caps.)

  • Cisco stock was up about 1.5 percent in early trading today on news that it will issue its first ever quarterly dividend -- a payout of 6 cents per share.

  • Cable networks griping about Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC)'s new iPad app may be "killing their golden goose," according to analyst Will Richmond. (See Deja Vu All Over Again and TWC's iPad App Launches With (Some) Live TV.)

  • Increasing DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV)'s subscriber base by 289,000 subscribers during the fourth quarter helped earn CEO Michael White $32.9 million in total compensation in 2010. (See DirecTV Preps Broadband Boxes, Flirts With LTE.)

    — Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable, and Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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    Jeff Baumgartner
    Jeff Baumgartner,
    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:10:02 PM
    re: Netflix Privacy Concerns May Spark Lawsuit

    Cox is starting off with no access to streaming VoD content or linear networks yet, but you can bet those types of features will be added later, likely starting off with VoD.  Checked w/Cox, which happens to be launching wireless services to more markets this year,  and they aren't supplying any new data on when or if they'll be adding those features, so stay tuned. JB


    User Rank: Light Beer
    12/5/2012 | 5:10:01 PM
    re: Netflix Privacy Concerns May Spark Lawsuit

    Cox’s approach in building one app that handles everything from remote DVR recordings to voicemail access is different than its rival Verizon, which multiple apps, including a remote DVR manager app, a digital phone app that allows you to check voicemails and view call logs from your landline, and a FIOS On Demand app that lets you buy Flex View movies that you can watch online, on a mobile phone, or on VOD. It also has a FiOS Mobile Remote app that turns your cell phone into a remote control. I have FiOS at home, and get the most use out of the Remote DVR manager app. The Mobile Remote app can come in handy when you can’t find the remote for your set-top (or want to hijack the TV if someone else has the cable remote). 

    sam masud
    sam masud,
    User Rank: Light Sabre
    12/5/2012 | 5:09:56 PM
    re: Netflix Privacy Concerns May Spark Lawsuit

    Your write: While some subscribers may find Netflix recommendations useful, its practice of retaining data about users' movie rental history has resulted in a potential class-action lawsuit


    Either something leads to a class action suit or it does not. It can't result in a "potential" class action suit. But it could lead to a class aciton suit....

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