Light Reading

Cox Guides Tru2way Forward

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
5/10/2010
50%
50%

Cox Communications Inc. has taken the wraps off a tricked-out tru2way-based interactive program guide (IPG) and navigation system, the centerpiece of a supersized premium video package that features a whole-home DVR, a bigger HDTV lineup, and a suite of interactive applications.

Cox plans to introduce the guide, a new line of Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) boxes that support it, and the overarching "Plus Package" this quarter in Orange County, Calif., targeting a region where the MSO grapples with both AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) U-verse and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) FiOS.

Cox, which has already completed its network upgrade deployment of tru2way, plans to add "Plus" in all systems by year's end. (See Cable's Tru2way Build Continues.)

Cox won't be swapping out boxes just to get its new tru2way baby out there, but will try to prime the pump by marketing the Plus Package as a premium product, offering it for $5 more per month to subscribers of any "Advanced TV"-level tier (i.e., those with digital video service).

Cox built the long-anticipated tru2way-powered guide, dubbed Trio, from scratch with the help of frog design inc. and NDS Ltd. , which served as the prime implementer on the project. Cox and its partners have been working on it since 2008. (See Cox Puts NDS at Heart of Tru2way Plan .)

"The guide is really the face of Cox to customers, and we really wanted to put our best face forward," says Cox executive director of video product development Lisa Pickelsimer. (Cox is in the processing of standardizing its legacy, non-tru2way boxes on the Rovi Corp. Passport IPG and ShowRunner VoD app.)

The name "Trio" comes from a three-panel navigation scheme that, Cox hopes, makes it easier for customers to discover and browse content than it's been on cable IPGs of yore.

The left panel lists channels vertically in numerical order, with the middle panel showing the selected channel's schedule, and the right pane providing a detailed description of the selected program.

search

Users can also search for TV shows and movies from the linear lineup, from the Cox video-on-demand (VoD) system, and from what's stored on the DVR. Up to eight users in a home can personalize the guide with favorite channels and ITV apps.

vod

Trio also has thematic "Zone Channels," where multiple channels are presented as a mosaic of video thumbnails. At the start, Cox will offer zones for news, sports, and kids programming.

Boxing up Cisco
The related tru2way-based Cisco combo includes the primary HD-DVR; the Explorer 8642; and HD, non-DVR Explorer 1642 multimedia gateways. The central gateway Cox is going with features 500 gigabytes of storage, with whole-home DVR and networking handled by the IP-based Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) platform. (See Cox, Entropic MoCA Deal Not Exclusive .)

Cisco box

In a new twist of sorts, Cox says it intends to deploy those boxes in its Cisco- and Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT)-based cable footprints. It'll deploy those boxes on Moto systems by overlaying the Motorola conditional access system (CAS) with Cisco's.

Those boxes, which will be paired with CableCARDs powered by Cisco's PowerKEY CAS, will also be the first from Cox to tune to HD channels above the 860MHz threshold, taking advantage of the MSO's recent upgrade to 1GHz. (See Cox Makes 1 GHz Moves .)

Cox currently averages about 80 linear HD channels and more than 1,000 HD "choices," a figure that factors in HD-VoD titles. It will offer more (it's not saying how much more yet) in those Plus Package markets that have been bumped to 1GHz and use switched digital video (SDV) techniques to get the most out of existing bandwidth.

Mobile video on the horizon
Although the new guide and video package will be set-top-based for now, Cox has developed a cross-platform user interface that borrows elements from Trio that will later tie into the MSO's wireless service plans. (See Cox Finds Friends for 3G Wireless Trials in Omaha and Cox: Wireless Coming in March .)

Mobile video and navigation "is solidly in Cox's product plans," Pickelsimer says, noting that the UI for mobile devices "will remind you quite a bit of the Trio guide."

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

(1)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 4:36:46 PM
re: Cox Guides Tru2way Forward
This announcement doesn't change tru2way's role at retail (still nearly none) , but offers another good indicator that MSOs aren't going to give tru2way the heave-ho once they've made the headend investments.




Getting the guide out there is key, since it will supply the base for everything else. Too early to tell since this is just now getting out into the field, but I think a year from now we will get a better sense if tru2way truly offers developers an "open" platform to write to. But i'm still curious to know how easy it will be for those same developers to get their apps deployed. JB

Flash Poll
From The Founder
Network architects aiming to upgrade their networks to support agile, open, virtualized services in the 21st century need to consider new criteria when choosing between technology suppliers.
Live Streaming Video
BTE 2015 Sponsor Keynote: HP
Dr. Prodip Sen, CTO, Network Functions Virtualization, HP
LRTV Custom TV
Red Hat Demo

7|2|15   |   10:53   |   (0) comments


Red Hat's Nicolas Lemieux demonstrates how Red Hat is driving innovation through open source communities.
LRTV Custom TV
Red Hat's Approach to OpenStack Adoption

7|2|15   |   5:17   |   (0) comments


Red Hat's Radhesh Balakrishnan outlines his company's open source strategy for both enterprises and telcos.
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Goes Mobile With vEPC

7|2|15   |   1:12   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Gabriel Brown discusses results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade that shows a clear commitment by mobile operators to move quickly to virtual EPC deployment.
LRTV Custom TV
Making Business Sense of SDN

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Results of a Brocade-sponsored survey show that CSPs have a clear sense of SDN use cases but are wrestling with the business case. Sterling Perrin of Heavy Reading looks behind the numbers.
LRTV Custom TV
NFV Will Be Here Sooner Than You Think

7|2|15   |   2:22   |   (0) comments


Forget the usual ten-year cycle for new technologies – NFV will be a core part of CSP networks in five years, based on results of a Brocade-sponsored survey, says Heavy Reading's Caroline Chappell.
LRTV Custom TV
The New IP Gains Traction With CSPs

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Roz Roseboro of Heavy Reading analyzes results of a Light Reading survey sponsored by Brocade showing that CSPs are getting serious about making the transition to the New IP era.
LRTV Custom TV
It's (Real) Time for Analytics

7|2|15   |   1:42   |   (0) comments


Heavy Reading's Jim Hodges looks at how CSPs say they plan to use analytics to deploy new services in real time as part of The New IP, based on results of a survey sponsored by Brocade.
LRTV Documentaries
IoT in Action

6|30|15   |   1:39   |   (8) comments


Two co-workers discuss the benefits of IoT technology.
LRTV Interviews
Ericsson Opens Up on OPNFV

6|30|15   |   14:16   |   (2) comments


Martin Bäckström, VP and head of industry area Datacom at Ericsson, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about the emergence of OPNFV, the importance of standards and Ericsson's OPNFV plans.
LRTV Custom TV
NetNumber Founder Discusses NFV/SDN Impact on SP Networks

6|26|15   |   4:15   |   (0) comments


NetNumber Founder Doug Ranalli examines why SPs need a new network infrastructure for service agility. While NFV and SDN are the tools, the old ways of thinking about signaling control are inhibitors. Doug provides his recommendations.
LRTV Custom TV
Orchestrating NFV vCPE Services Across Multivendor Networks

6|26|15   |   5:46   |   (0) comments


Nirav Modi provides an overview of vCPE, the fastest-growing NFV use case, showing how Cyan's Blue Planet orchestrates vCPE services across a multivendor infrastructure to rapidly deliver new managed services for business customers.
LRTV Custom TV
ZTE at LTE Summit Amsterdam 2015

6|26|15   |     |   (0) comments


As one of the leading global telecommunications providers, ZTE presented its cutting-edge technology at LTE World Summit 2015 in Amsterdam. On display at ZTE's booth were the latest R&D achievements in wireless, 5G development, HetNet, deep convergence of FDD and TDD, and RCS/IMD/iSDN/vCN.
Upcoming Live Events
September 16-17, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
October 6, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 6, 2015, Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
October 14-15, 2015, New Orleans Ernest N. Morial Convention Center, New Orleans, LA
November 5, 2015, Hilton Santa Clara, Santa Clara, CA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Hot Topics
Who's Feeding Fiber to LinkNYC Hotspots?
Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, 6/29/2015
What's a Gigabit Good For?
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 7/1/2015
Colt to Jettison Ailing IT Business
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/30/2015
Eurobites: Activist Investor Takes Stake in AlcaLu
Paul Rainford, Assistant Editor, Europe, 6/30/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Casa Systems has been going from strength to strength over the last couple of years. In 2013, it became the first vendor to ship an integrated CCAP device -- the ...
Cedrik Neike, SVP of Global Service Provider, Service Delivery, at Cisco, talks to Light Reading founder and CEO Steve Saunders about solving service provider customer problems in a virtualized, DevOps world, including multivendor support and the future of network procurement.
Cats with Phones