Light Reading
Cabler says it won't buy DVRs any longer after the end of this year

Cablevision Preps Network DVR, WiFi Phone

Light Reading
LR Cable News Analysis
Light Reading
2/25/2010
50%
50%

Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) says it is hitting the accelerator on the deployment of a network-based DVR and its new PC to TV Relay service, in addition to testing a WiFi-based phone product.

By the end of 2010, Cablevision will stop buying pricey DVR set-tops -- which account for 40 percent of its capital expenditures -- and begin transitioning subscribers to its remote-storage DVR (RS-DVR), chief operating officer Tom Rutledge told analysts on the MSO's fourth-quarter earnings call today.

Rutledge said when the RS-DVR launches in April, it will only have limited functions such as allowing subscribers that also have Optimum Phone to pause live TV when a caller ID message is displayed on their TVs. He didn't detail how many hours of programming subscribers will be able to store through the RS-DVR, or the other features that the product will offer by the end of the year.

Cablevision will also expand the rollout of its PC to TV Relay service, which it unveiled on Wednesday and plans to begin testing in June, to all of its customers, Rutledge said. The product would allow subscribers that pay for both digital cable and high-speed Internet access to use their TVs as a monitor after installing software on their computers. (See Cablevision to Deliver Net Content to Set-Tops and Netflix Cheers Cablevision’s PC-to-TV Play .)

Analysts pressed Rutledge on the impact the PC to TV service could have on programmers that license their networks to Cablevision but also offer free content on the Internet.

"I don't think it's smart to fight the Internet in the television space. On the other hand, if you're a programmer and you're getting license fees you have to think about what you do with your content. It seems to me if you're a programmer you can't really expect to put programming on the Internet and at the same time collect a license fee out of the cable business or the satellite business," Rutledge said.

It's worth noting that Cablevision also owns several cable networks, including AMC, WE tv, and MSG.

Rutledge said the wireless phone service that Cablevision is testing involves switching subscribers from cellular to WiFi networks depending on their location. He said the MSO is studying whether it would need to build or rent a cellular network for the service, or if it could rely entirely on its WiFi infrastructure.

"We haven't made those decisions. The latter outcome would be a less capital-intensive, higher-return business," he added.

Cablevision, which faces competition from Verizon Inc.'s FiOS TV on 38 percent of its New York metropolitan footprint, lost 2,800 subscribers in the fourth quarter. Rutledge said he thinks Cablevision would've grown its video subscriber base during the quarter if it hadn't taken a hit in "lower income areas with high unemployment."

Last year, Cablevision began selling advertisers addressable and targeted ads, allowing subscribers to request more information about a product and receive samples from Gillette, Unilever, and other advertisers. Rutledge said the advanced advertising efforts are driving revenue increases, but he wouldn't break out the numbers. (See Cablevision's Interactive Ads Click With Subs and Cablevision Eyes T-Commerce Launch in 2010.)

"We're getting repeat business, and we're getting new business, and we expect it to materially drive our advertising going forward," Rutledge said.

The Cablevision COO also addressed the quicker pace of technology deployments from Cablevision compared to other MSOs, including its focus on advanced advertising and new products such as the RS-DVR, PC to TV Relay, and its WiFi-based phone tests.

"Different companies are in different points along a trajectory that takes them in many ways to places that are very similar to us. We happen to be aggressive marketers and we happen to move very quickly," Rutledge said. "Strategically I don't think we're really in a different place. We are all looking at the same world, and not everyone thinks exactly the same way. In terms of the networks that we deploy and the capability of those networks I think every cable company realizes that those assets are really quite flexible."

Cablevision said it added 4,800 digital video customers in the fourth quarter, along with 45,700 high-speed Internet, 89,000 high-definition customers, and 51,400 Optimum Voice subscribers.

— Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable



(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Educational Resources
sponsor supplied content
Educational Resources Archive
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 Interviews
Liberty Global Sees Business Goldmine

12|18|14   |     |   (0) comments


Steen Sorensen, VP of business services for Liberty Global, explains where the giant international MSO sees growth potential.
LRTV Documentaries
EE: The Road to 5G

12|16|14   |   16:02   |   (1) comment


Andy Sutton, the principal network architect at UK mobile operator EE, explains how his company is using Wembley stadium as a wireless test bed and how that's helping EE to plan the evolution to 5G.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Highlights of Huawei's NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014

12|16|14   |     |   (0) comments


Huawei hosted its inaugural NFV Open Cloud Forum during the SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014 in Düsseldorf, Germany. The Forum brought together technology thought leaders, senior executives and telecom professionals from global carriers, industry associations, as well as other partner companies in the ecosystem, to exchange views on and collectively explore how ...
LRTV Custom TV
Realizing Operators' Digital Vision

12|16|14   |   5:23   |   (0) comments


Leveraging technology is fundamental to digital transformation but understanding customers and serving them really well is at the heart of digital businesses. TM Forum lists the following as the strategic pillars of the digital business: business agility and rapid innovation, operational agility and effectiveness, IT and data centricity, plus customer centricity. ...
LRTV Documentaries
US Cellular Injects Analytics Into LTE

12|16|14   |   2:57   |   (1) comment


US Cellular's Mario Vela explains how the operator uses analytics for network planning and what comes next as the carrier looks to eke more value out of its metrics.
LRTV Interviews
How Cox Biz Plans to Keep Growing

12|15|14   |     |   (2) comments


Steve Rowley, SVP of Cox Business, details how the third-biggest US MSO intends to boost its revenues to $2 billion and beyond over the rest of the decade
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Bill Zhang, Director of SoftCOM Product Management, Huawei

12|15|14   |   2:50   |   (0) comments


Bill Zhang elaborated on Huawei's open philosophy in NFV solution development and network architecture design at the SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Event Highlights: Huawei at SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014

12|15|14   |   3:43   |   (0) comments


Huawei joined the 2014 SDN & OpenFlow Congress as one of the key sponsors and contributors. At the event, Huawei reinforced the openness and flexibility of its network infrastructure strategies, and provided updates on its SDN and NVF innovations. Through participations at the exhibitions, forums and speeches, Huawei encouraged the industry to "think bigger and ...
LRTV Interviews
How Cable Biz Services Hit $10B Mark

12|12|14   |     |   (1) comment


Cable operators reached $10 billion in annual business services revenues by delving deeper into their vertical markets and expanding beyond the smallest firms.
LRTV Documentaries
Mediacom Aims to Test Connected Tractors

12|11|14   |   05:07   |   (3) comments


Cable business service provider is taking its services to the 'agribusiness' sector in partnership with farm equipment specialist John Deere and is getting involved in Gigabit Cities developments.
LRTV Interviews
TWC Business Looks Beyond $3B

12|10|14   |     |   (0) comments


TWC Business Services chief Phil Meeks explains how his unit has reached $3 billion in annual revenues and what its plans are for next year.
LRTV Documentaries
AT&T's New Security Strategy

12|10|14   |   02:36   |   (1) comment


AT&T's Chief Security Officer Ed Amoroso explains how his company is wrapping virtual security layers around micro network domains.
Upcoming Live Events
February 10, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Hot Topics
Vodafone to Ride T-Mobile Back Into US
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/12/2014
1-Gig: Coming to a Small Town Near You
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 12/17/2014
T-Mobile, BlackBerry Flirt With Reuniting
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 12/17/2014
Gardner's Departure a Cautionary Tale
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 12/12/2014
T-Mobile Lights Up 27 Wideband LTE Cities
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 12/15/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Upcoming Webinars
Webinar Archive