Light Reading
Also: Dish hops around Fox advertising snub; FiOS TV tunes up its TV Everywhere lineup; smart TVs on the rise

Comcast Unit Packs More TV Into Less Space

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
2/25/2013
50%
50%

Welcome to today's broadband and cable news roundup.

  • Comcast Corp.'s Colorado-based HITS unit has released an upgrade to its video distribution platform for independent Tier 2/3 cable operators that still relies heavily on MPEG-2-based digital video but is becoming more efficient from a bandwidth perspective. The upgrade, known as "Q2" and getting underway in the second quarter, is being applied to the HITS Quantum Platform and will convert several HITS standard-definition transponders to more bandwidth-efficient DVB-S2 technology, a move that will generate more capacity and increase the number of HD services that can be delivered via the MPEG-2 format. The upgrade will also enable HITS to deliver the entire programming lineup via a single satellite, and will let HITS affiliates add more programming and reduce bandwidth consumption without having to rebuild their headends or replace their MPEG-2-based digital set-top boxes, Comcast said. The operator estimates that more than 70 percent of its HITS Quantum multiplexes will be using 256 QAM DVB-S2 technology and, as a result, will enable cable operator partners to free up to 25 percent of their bandwidth for new services. The upgrade comes into play as HITS and the National Cable Television Cooperative Inc. (NCTC), which represents almost 1,000 independent cable operators, recently reworked a deal that provides access to the HITS upgrades. Comcast says the "majority" of participating NCTC members have already opted in for the upgrades, while "several" programming groups have also signed up to tap into the upgraded platform. Comcast and the NCTC made the announcement as the co-op's Winter Educational Conference (WEC) gets set to kick off this week in Las Vegas.
  • Fox Broadcasting Co. is refusing to run Dish Network Corp. ads these days as the two companies lock horns in the courts, but the satellite giant still figured out how to promote its controversial Hopper HD-DVR during Sunday's running of the Daytona 500. Dish and its Hopper logo still got air time by sponsoring the Leavine Family Racing's No. 95 Ford Fusion (here's a pic), driven by Scott Speed, who finished in 23rd and won $305,514, by the way. Dish and the broadcasters are battling in the courts over the Hopper's ad-zapping AutoHop feature. Last week, Fox upped the ante by targeting a new feature in a second-generation version of the Hopper that lets users sling live TV over the Internet to PCs, tablets and smartphones, and port recorded TV shows to mobile devices. (See Fox Attacks Dish's New Video Slinger.)
  • Verizon Communications Inc. FiOS TV has added 11 networks from the NBCUniversal LLC to its TV Everywhere stable: Bravo, USA, Oxygen, MSNBC, CNBC, NBC News, NBC, Syfy, mun2, Telemundo and Cozi TV. While most of those nets are pitching in on-demand content, the deal also provides authenticated FiOS TV subs with access to a live stream of the CNBC TV feed. Verizon says it will be adding "a few more NBCU networks" next month as it fleshed out the lineup of its My Verizon TV everywhere portal, which already offers access to shows and streams from HBO, Starz Entertainment LLC, Showtime Networks Inc., ESPN and Turner Broadcasting System Inc., among others.
  • More than 25 percent of TVs shipped in 2012 were "smart" (i.e. Internet-connected), according to Screen Digest, predicting that the number will rise to more than 50 percent 2015. The trend is a positive one for cable operators that are pursuing all-service gateways that can deliver services to connected TVs without the need for a separate set-top or client device. (See Comcast All-Service Gateways Go 'Headless' .)
  • ESPN has inked a deal to sell its U.K. and Ireland TV channels business to BT Group plc for an undisclosed sum. The buy primarily includes the ESPN and ESPN America channels and their live sports portfolio, including the FA Cup, Clydesdale Bank Scottish Premier League, UEFA Europa league and the German Bundesliga.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable



    (0)  | 
    Comment  | 
    Print  | 
  • Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
    Flash Poll
    LRTV Custom TV
    A New Security Paradigm in SDN/NFV

    7|28|14   |   02:54   |   (0) comments


    Paul Shaneck, Global Director Network Solutions for Symantec, discusses the evolving virtualized network, explaining how Symantec is leading the security discussion as it relates to SDN and NFV, and helping to ensure the network is protected and compliant.
    LRTV Documentaries
    Sprint's Network Evolution

    7|24|14   |   14:59   |   (0) comments


    Sprint's Jay Bluhm gives a keynote speech at the Big Telecom Event (BTE) about Sprint's network and services evolution strategy, including Spark.
    LRTV Documentaries
    BTE Keynote: The Software-Defined Operator

    7|24|14   |   18:43   |   (1) comment


    Deutsche Telekom's Axel Clauberg explains the concept of the software-defined operator to the Big Telecom Event (BTE) crowd.
    Light Reedy
    Numbers Are In: LR's 2014 Salary Survey

    7|24|14   |   1:25   |   (7) comments


    Our fourth annual Salary Survey paints a picture of who's hiring, firing, earning, and yearning for a change in the telecom industry.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Driving the Network Transformation

    7|23|14   |   4:29   |   (0) comments


    Intel's Sandra Rivera discusses network transformation and how Intel technologies, programs, and standards body efforts have helped the industry migration to SDN and NFV.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Distributed NFV-Based Business Services by RAD

    7|18|14   |   5:38   |   (0) comments


    With the ETSI-approved Distributed NFV PoC running in the background, RAD's CEO, Dror Bin, talks about why D-NFV makes compelling sense for service providers, and about the dollars and cents RAD is putting behind D-NFV.
    LRTV Custom TV
    MRV – Accelerating Packet Optical Convergence

    7|15|14   |   6:06   |   (0) comments


    Giving you network insight to make your network smarter.
    LRTV Custom TV
    NFV-Enabled Ethernet for Generating New Revenues

    7|15|14   |   5:49   |   (0) comments


    Cyan's Planet Orchestrate allows service providers and their end-customers to activate software-based capabilities such as firewalls and encryption on top of existing Ethernet services in just minutes.
    LRTV Custom TV
    Symkloud NVF-Ready Video Transcoding, Big Data

    7|9|14   |   3:41   |   (0) comments


    Kontron and ISV partner Vantrix demonstrate high-performance video transcoding and data analytic solutions on same 2U standard platform that is ready for SDN and NFV deployments made by mobile, cable and cloud operators.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    The Evolving Role of Hybrid Video for Competitive Success

    7|4|14   |   4:09   |   (0) comments


    At Huawei's Global Analysts Summit in Shenzhen, China, Steven C. Hawley from TV Strategies speaks to us about the evolving role of hybrid video for competitive success.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    How CSPs Leverage Big Data in the Digital Economy

    7|4|14   |   4:48   |   (2) comments


    Justin van der Lande from Analysys Mason shares with us his views on how telecom operators can leverage customer asset monetization with big data. His discusses the current status of big data applications and the challenges and opportunities for telecom operators in the digital economy era.
    LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
    Accelerator for Digital Business – Future Oriented BSS

    7|4|14   |   3:08   |   (0) comments


    Mobile and internet are becoming intertwined; IT and CT are integrating; and leading CSPs have begun to transform to information service and entertainment providers. How should the BSS system evolve to enable this transformation? Karl Whitelock, an analyst at Frost & Sullivan, shares his views.
    Upcoming Live Events!!
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    September 16, 2014, Santa Clara, CA
    October 29, 2014, New York City
    November 6, 2014, Santa Clara
    November 11, 2014, Atlanta, GA
    December 9-10, 2014, Reykjavik, Iceland
    Infographics
    Packet Design asks network professionals how they handle the cloud, SDN, and network management.
    Today's Cartoon
    Vacation Special Caption Competition Click Here
    Latest Comment
    Hot Topics
    Is Windstream Boldly Setting a New Trend?
    Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/29/2014
    U-verse Growth Slips But Still Strong
    Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 7/24/2014
    Facebook: 30% of Users Are Mobile-Only
    Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 7/24/2014
    Verizon Applies 3G Throttling Policy to LTE
    Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 7/25/2014
    If Not Muni Networks, Then What?
    Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/28/2014
    Like Us on Facebook
    Twitter Feed