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Netflix Sinks as It Cuts Q4 Subscriber Forecast

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner

Welcome to the broadband and cable news roundup, Hump Day edition.

  • Shares in Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) dropped 16 percent in after-hours trading Tuesday and continued their decline into Wednesday morning after the company delivered weak fourth-quarter guidance alongside disappointing third-quarter subscription totals. Netflix added 1.16 million new U.S. streaming customers, near the bottom of the 1 million to 1.8 million it had projected, a total that ensures that Netflix will likely miss its original goal of ending 2012 with 7 million new U.S. subscribers. Netflix put its full-year estimate for U.S. streaming subs at between 4.7 million and 5.4 million. "In perfect hindsight, it was not the best choice to put out that high a goal," Netflix CEO Reed Hastings told the Associated Press. Netflix posted third-quarter net income of US$8 million (13 cents per share) on revenues of $905 million. Netflix ended the quarter with 25.1 million U.S. subs, and 4.3 million international customers. It now expects fourth-quarter revenues of $919 million to $943 million; analysts predicted $942 million.

  • Intel Corp. (Nasdaq: INTC) confirmed it has licensed the Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) Reference Design Kit (RDK), a video software bundle for new hybrid QAM/IP set-top boxes and IP-only client devices that employ the tru2way platform. The first RDK deployment example is the Comcast X1 platform, which ties a Pace plc gateway with Intel's Atom CE4200 media processor and its Puma-class Docsis 3.0 chipset. Here's a list of known RDK licensees so far. (See Cisco, Humax & Technicolor Join Comcast's Crew , Comcast's X1 to Fly First in Boston? , and Comcast's Set-Top Accelerator Gains Traction .)

  • Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT) posted a third-quarter GAAP net loss of $8.2 million (7 cents per share) on revenues of $136.7 million, which compares with year-ago net income of $3.5 million (3 cents per share) and revenues of $138.9 million. Among product segments, soft sales in Europe caused video processing revenues of $49.9 million to fall short of the $59.3 million expected by Jefferies & Co. Inc. analyst James Kisner. Harmonic is expecting fourth-quarter revenues in the $132 million to $142 million range.

  • Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) has tailored its advanced advertising platform for IPTV providers and will show it all off at this week's TelcoTV 2012 show in Las Vegas. Arris, which is expanding beyond its traditional cable market, says its new multicast IPTV platform is capable of delivering regional, zoned and targeted ads. Part of its move into the telco TV world is born out of its 2011 acquisition of BigBand Networks Inc. (See Arris Snaps Up BigBand .)

  • SeaChange International Inc. (Nasdaq: SEAC) will also be at TelcoTV to demonstrate its cloud-based video software for multi-screen applications and services, including its Adrenalin TV Everywhere backoffice platform, HTML5-based Nitro user interface, and Infusion ad system for set-tops, tablets, smartphones and other IP-connected screens.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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