& cplSiteName &

CableLabs Stamps Panasonic TVs

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
9/30/2008
50%
50%

CableLabs has quietly certified two tru2way -powered TVs from Panasonic Corp. (NYSE: PC), a distinction that gives the consumer electronics giant the green light to begin selling the sets at retail in time for the 2008 holiday season.

Panasonic, successful after receiving a much-publicized failing grade in June, is entering the market with high-definition (HD), truway models that sport 42-inch and 50-inch screens. (See Tru2way Troubles?) CableLabs and Panasonic officials confirmed the certifications.

Those models are capable of delivering digital cable services, including interactive applications such as video on demand (VOD), without the need for a separate set-top box. But they will require a cable-operator supplied CableCARD to authorize service.

The CableCARD-based digital televisions available so far can only deliver one-way applications and, based on adoption levels, have been pretty much dead on arrival. (See CableCARD Update V.) Manufacturers hope the tru2way models do better.

Several major U.S. cable operators, including Comcast, have agreed to provide network support for tru2way middleware and to support tru2way in the headends serving all digital cable systems by July 1, 2009. (See Revealed: The Tru2way MOU.)

The elements required for tru2way TVs, including the CableCARD interface, are estimated to cost manufacturers about $200. Panasonic isn't talking about the pricing or marketing plans for its tru2way sets, though. "We're just focused and excited about delivering the 2008 holiday launches," says Vic Carlson, director of marketing for Panasonic's TV group.

Panasonic earned CableLabs certification about the same time it was conducting live demonstrations of a tru2way TV earlier this month at the Custom Electronic Design and Installation Association (CEDIA) Expo in Denver. There, Panasonic showed off the capabilities of the 50-inch Viera PZ80Q as it received live signals from a Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) headend, and ran the MSO's interactive program guide along with VOD and other applications. (See Panasonic Plays With Live Ammo .)

Panasonic will likely be the first TV manufacturer to find out how tru2way TVs truly fare at retail, but Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC) was first to win CableLabs approval, back in August 2005, and LG hit the mark in January 2007 with a 42-inch plasma HDTV. Neither of those products have made it to retail.

To date, just one set-top box -- a device made by Advanced Digital Broadcast (ADB) -- has been certified for tru2way. (See ADB Scores tru2way Certification.)

However, there are indications that Panasonic is also closing in on acceptance for its tru2way set-tops. According to recently posted CableLabs testing results, Panasonic obtained Docsis 2.0 certification for a Docsis Set-Top Gateway (DSG) and embedded cable modem following Certification Wave 62. That element, which provides a non-proprietary signaling path for guide data and for other communications with the cable operator, applies to tru2way TVs and set-tops.

A Comcast spokeswoman said the MSO is presently testing Panasonic set-tops in the lab, but would not say when the operator will begin commercial deployments.

Panasonic forged a deal in early 2006 to supply Comcast with 250,000 HD-DVR set-tops outfitted with the OpenCable Application Platform (OCAP) middleware -- which is used in tru2way devices -- and dual MPEG-2/MPEG-4 support, with an option for up to 1 million boxes in the first year.

The companies' work together doesn't end there. Panasonic has been developing a line of residential network gateway boxes for Comcast, and at the Consumer Electronics Show in January, Panasonic and Comcast unveiled a standard-definition, tru2way-based portable DVR called the "AnyPlay." Comcast is expected to begin offering it in early 2009. (See Comcast, Panasonic Unveil Portable DVR .)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

(4)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View        ADD A COMMENT
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:30:33 PM
re: CableLabs Stamps Panasonic TVs
Quick question: Anyone champing at the bit to go out and buy one of these? Why? Why not? While enabling services like VOD is a huge plus over the earlier one-way Plug & Play TVs, I think the lack of an integrated DVR doesn't help, though it's apparently on the roadmap for some of these tru2way TV makers.
njguy
50%
50%
njguy,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:30:26 PM
re: CableLabs Stamps Panasonic TVs
Isn't anyone buying a high-end TV going to hook it to a DVR?
Jeff Baumgartner
50%
50%
Jeff Baumgartner,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:30:25 PM
re: CableLabs Stamps Panasonic TVs
Sure, i think most people who buy new HDTVs will want to have a DVR too. But, the point i was trying to make is that people who buy a tru2way TV and want a DVR will have to buy a separate box that handles the DVR function, which sorta defeats the purpose of a set-top-free TV. But, if Cablevision's remote-storage DVR concept takes off and doesn't run into any other legal tangles, that could help to solve that issue.
Posto
50%
50%
Posto,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 3:30:24 PM
re: CableLabs Stamps Panasonic TVs

You are right about DVR being the user preference with any HDTV purchase.

In addition, MSO's defense against FiOS is triple play. So in a Tru2way environment, where does the EMTA live if the HDTV is Truway and cable ready?
perhaps with a separate remote-storage DVR , also becomes the network termination for the head-end AND the subscribers home.
Consider this wiring nightmare, a Triple play embedded in the Plasma TV hanging on the wall!
Posto
From The Founder
Kicking off BCE 2017, Light Reading founder Steve Saunders lays blame for NFV's slow ramp-up and urges telecom to return to old-fashioned standards building and interoperability.
Flash Poll
Live Streaming Video
Charting the CSP's Future
Six different communications service providers join to debate their visions of the future CSP, following a landmark presentation from AT&T on its massive virtualization efforts and a look back on where the telecom industry has been and where it's going from two industry veterans.
LRTV Interviews
CenturyLink: Let's Get Past SD-WAN Hype

6|23|17   |   04:02   |   (0) comments


Technology becomes a "shiny object" unless it's properly focused on solving business needs for enterprise customers, says Bill Grubbs, network solutions architect for CenturyLink. He explains to Light Reading why SD-WAN deployments have to be tailored to specific needs – and more.
Women in Comms Introduction Videos
Infinera's Sales Director Paints Tech's Big Picture

6|21|17   |   4:14   |   (1) comment


Shannon Williams, Infinera's director of sales, shares how she achieves work's many balancing acts -- between her role and the broader company, today and tomorrow's tech and more.
LRTV Custom TV
SD-WAN Innovation & Trends

6|20|17   |     |   (0) comments


Versa CEO Kelly Ahuja discusses with Carol Wilson the current status and trends in the SD-WAN market, Versa's innovation around building a software platform with broad contextualization, and the advantages that startups can bring to the SD-WAN market.
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Dario Talmesio on 5G in Europe

6|20|17   |   02:16   |   (0) comments


At 5G World 2017, Dario Talmesio, principal analyst and practice leader on Ovum's fixed and mobile telecoms European team, explains the emerging trends amongst European operators as they prepare for 5G.
LRTV Custom TV
Putting Power on a Pedestal

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


ARRIS's John Ulm says a major accomplishment of SCTE•ISBE's Energy 2020 program is increased focus on power cost and consumption, including inclusion of energy requirements in operators' RFPs and RFIs.
LRTV Custom TV
Gigabit Access: The Last-Mile Pipe for All Future Services

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


A Gigabit access platform being deployed today must be able to deliver all types of services to an increasing number of devices. A non-blocking architecture is necessary to support the ever-increasing growth in bandwidth demand. The Huawei Gigabit access solution is based on a distributed design that is fully scalable to deliver a unprecedented performance.
LRTV Custom TV
Key Factors to Successfully Deploy an SD-WAN Service

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


As service providers transition their SD-WAN solution from trials and limited deployments into production at large scale, there are important considerations to successfully operationalize these solutions and realize their full potential, without adding complexity, introducing uncertainty or disrupting current business operations. Sunil Khandekar, CEO and Founder ...
LRTV Custom TV
IoT Solutions: Rational Exuberance

6|19|17   |     |   (0) comments


IoT solutions are morphing from hype into viable business opportunities. Huawei has the platform and ecosystem support to help carriers successfully address new business opportunities in the IoT space.
LRTV Custom TV
Realizing ICN as a Network Slice for Mobile Data Distribution

6|19|17   |     |   (1) comment


Network slicing in 5G allows the potential introduction of new network architectures such as Information-centric Networks (ICN) as a slice, managed over a shared pool of compute, storage and bandwidth resource. Services over an ICN slice can benefit from many architectural features such as Name Based Networking, Security, Multicasting, Multi-homing, Mobility, ...
LRTV Interviews
Ovum's Mike Roberts on 5G Uptake

6|19|17   |   04:08   |   (0) comments


Mike Roberts, research director for Ovum's service provider markets group, explains why he has boosted his 5G subscriptions forecast.
LRTV Interviews
AT&T's Hubbard on Intersection of SD-WAN & MPLS

6|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Rick Hubbard, SVP of Network Product Management for AT&T Business Solutions, discusses how AT&T's approach to SD-WAN fits in with its overall virtualization strategy, explains how SD-WAN can improve enterprise customers' use of the cloud and addresses the intersection of SD-WAN and MPLS.
Telecom Innovators Video Showcase
Keep Connected IoT Devices Under Control With Allot

6|15|17   |     |   (0) comments


Allot AVP of International Pre-Sales, Daniel Keidar, explains how communications service providers can protect infrastructure and service availability from flooding attacks caused by malfunctioning or bot-infected devices connected to their network.
Upcoming Live Events
October 18, 2017, Colorado Convention Center - Denver, CO
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 1, 2017, The Montcalm Marble Arch
November 30, 2017, The Westin Times Square
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
With the mobile ecosystem becoming increasingly vulnerable to security threats, AdaptiveMobile has laid out some of the key considerations for the wireless community.
Hot Topics
Netflix's Lesson in Culture Expectation Settings
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
No Imagination: UK Chip Biz Goes Up for Sale
Iain Morris, News Editor, 6/22/2017
Kalanick Steps Down as Uber CEO
Sarah Thomas, Director, Women in Comms, 6/21/2017
BT Tech Chief Makes Plea to 5G Chip Vendors
Ray Le Maistre, International Group Editor, 6/20/2017
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Following a recent board meeting, the New IP Agency (NIA) has a new strategy to help accelerate the adoption of NFV capabilities, explains the Agency's Founder and Secretary, Steve Saunders.
One of the nice bits of my job (other than the teeny tiny salary, obviously) is that I get to pick and choose who I interview for this slot on the Light Reading home ...
Animals with Phones
Live Digital Audio

Playing it safe can only get you so far. Sometimes the biggest bets have the biggest payouts, and that is true in your career as well. For this radio show, Caroline Chan, general manager of the 5G Infrastructure Division of the Network Platform Group at Intel, will share her own personal story of how she successfully took big bets to build a successful career, as well as offer advice on how you can do the same. We’ll cover everything from how to overcome fear and manage risk, how to be prepared for where technology is going in the future and how to structure your career in a way to ensure you keep progressing. Chan, a seasoned telecom veteran and effective risk taker herself, will also leave plenty of time to answer all your questions live on the air.