Light Reading
Comcast CTO expects rollout in 'select' markets to begin in Q3 2008 but has yet to pick a home networking scheme

Comcast Plots Multi-Room DVR

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
11/15/2007
50%
50%

AUSTIN, Texas -- MoCA Technology Conference -- Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) plans to begin "seeding" its systems for multi-room digital video recording (DVR) applications in 2008, with the capability set to be offered in "select" markets by the third quarter of the year.

So says Comcast Chief Technology Officer Tony Werner, the opening keynoter here at the first ever Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) technology conference.

But despite being a founding member of MoCA, Comcast hasn't committed to using the technology developed by the alliance, which recently ratified a version of its home networking platform designed for throughput of up to 175 Mbit/s. (See MoCA Upgraded .)

That lack of commitment to MoCA so far suggests that Comcast is still negotiating pricing and evaluating other schemes such as HomePNA and Ultrawideband.

The MSO is also still undecided about the eventual scale of its rollout. Werner said Comcast is still vetting the business case for a wide rollout of a home networking technology, a move that would include the cost of incorporating MoCA, or another home networking platform, into the set-top layer.

Werner wondered if, instead of investing in a technology such as MoCA, it would make more sense for Comcast to deploy "Start Over," a popular application championed in the U.S. by Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) that allows customers to restart some shows (those with copyright clearance) already in progress.

While Comcast is still hedging its bets, others here aren't so undecided.

Cox Communications Inc. , another MoCA founder, expects to restart trials in 2008 and possibly deploy MoCA in support of multi-room DVR applications. The MSO was "sidetracked" from its initial trials this year by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) 's ban on integrated security set-tops, according to Vince Groff, the operator's director of video product development. (See Countdown to 'Seven-Oh-Seven'.)

EchoStar Satellite LLC , meanwhile, has offered multi-room DVR applications using an analog, UHF-over-coax approach for about five years. The current setup allows customers to share recordings with another TV, but high-definition signals must be converted to standard definition.

Will Beals, director of hardware systems architecture for EchoStar Technologies, the subject of a possible spin-off, said distributing HD video to a second set in customers' homes is driving his company's MoCA strategy, but EchoStar has yet to announce how the home networking technology will fit into its product roadmap.

While some service providers are still ramping up their MoCA plans, Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) has made it a technical centerpiece for its FiOS TV service strategy. In fact, homes that take the FiOS TV services are blanketed with it.

The telco has MoCA silicon deployed at the optical network terminal (ONT), integrated into special home routers, and inside each set-top. The "purpose-built" home router, supplied to each customer, has two MoCA components –- one on the LAN side to talk to set-tops over a sub-net, and another that communicates directly with the ONT.

In addition to using MoCA for the multi-room DVR capability that sells for $7 extra per month, Verizon also hopes to reduce operating expenses by using the platform to handle remote configuration and management of set-tops and other consumer-side devices hanging off the telco's fiber-fed network.

"Anytime we can avoid a dispatch, that's a saving for the business," said Brian Whitton, Verizon's executive director of access network design and integration.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News


Interested in learning more on this topic? Then come to The Future of Cable Business Services, a conference that will explore the swiftly expanding U.S. business services market. To be staged in New York City, December 6, admission is free for attendees meeting our prequalification criteria. For more information, or to register, click here.


(0)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
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 Huawei Video Resource Center
Dr. Dong Sun Talks About Carriers' Digital Transformation & Huawei’s Telco OS

1|29|15   |   6:28   |   (0) comments


Dr. Dong Sun, Chief Architect of Digital Transformation Solutions at Huawei, discusses how telecom operators can become digital ecosystem enablers and deliver optimal user experiences that are in real-time, on-demand, all-online, DIY and social (ROADS).
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Chief Network Architect Talks about Network Experience & Operators’ Strategies

1|29|15   |   3:39   |   (0) comments


In the digital age, network experience has become the primary productivity especially for telecom operators. In this video, Wenshuan Dang, Huawei’s Chief Network Architect, discusses how carriers can tackle the challenge of infrastructure complexity in order to enhance business agility and improve user experience.
LRTV Documentaries
The Rise of Virtual CPE

1|27|15   |   01:38   |   (3) comments


As NFV strategies evolve from tests and trials to production telco networks, expect to hear a lot about virtual CPE (customer premises equipment) rollouts during 2015.
LRTV Documentaries
Optical Is Hot in 2015

1|23|15   |   01:56   |   (2) comments


Optical comms technology underpins the whole communications sector and there are some really hot trends set for 2015.
LRTV Custom TV
Policy Control in the Fast Lane

1|22|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


What's making policy control strategic in 2015 and beyond? Amdocs talks with Heavy Reading's Graham Finnie about the key factors driving change in the data services landscape. Find out what his policy management research reveals about the road ahead for policy control – and sign up for
LRTV Documentaries
Highlights From the 2020 Vision Executive Summit

1|21|15   |   4:33   |   (2) comments


In December 2014, Light Reading brought together telecom executives in Reykjavik, Iceland to discuss their vision for high-capacity networks through the end of the decade. The intimate, interactive meeting was set against the backdrop of Iceland's spectacular natural beauty. As one of the event's founding sponsors, Cisco's Doug Webster shared his company's ...
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Harmonic, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment with Huawei

1|20|15   |   5:42   |   (1) comment


At IBC, Peter Alexander, Senior Vice President & CMO at Harmonic, speaks about the growing interest in pay-TV service and its branching into multiple devices.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Sony Marketing Director Olivier Bovis Discusses the Outlook for 4K and Cooperation With Huawei at IBC 2014

1|20|15   |   6:50   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Pay-TV Partner Envivio, Helping Carriers Accelerate 4K Video Deployment

1|20|15   |   2:57   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Olivier Bovis, Marketing Director of Sony, speaks about the coming of the 4K era.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Pay-TV's Networked Future

1|20|15   |   6:29   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about the future of the pay-TV industry and its transition.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Jeff Heynen: Distributed Access Will Help MSOs Compete in the Future

1|20|15   |   2:26   |   (0) comments


At IBC, Jeff Heynen, Principal Analyst at Infonetics, speaks about moving to distributed access and the future trend of cable business.
LRTV Interviews
Cisco Talks Transformation

1|20|15   |   13:02   |   (0) comments


In December 2014, Steve Saunders sat down with Cisco VP of Products & Solutions Marketing Doug Webster at Light Reading's 2020 Vision executive summit in Reykjavik, Iceland. They spoke about Cisco's approach to network virtualization as well as how service providers can begin to monetize high-capacity networks through the end of the decade.
Upcoming Live Events
February 5, 2015, Washington, DC
February 19, 2015, The Fairmont San Jose, San Jose, CA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 9-10, 2015, The Westin Galleria Dallas, Dallas, TX
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
December 1, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
December 2-3, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City
Infographics
Hot Topics
Google Continues Gigabit Expansion
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 1/27/2015
BlackBerry Wants Net Neutrality Protection – That's Just Sad
Mitch Wagner, West Coast Bureau Chief, Light Reading, 1/22/2015
Verizon Ready for Google MVNO Challenge
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 1/22/2015
FiOS Picks Up Pace Again
Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, 1/22/2015
Cablevision's New WiFi Try – Freewheeling Enough?
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 1/26/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Weekly Executive Interview
Join us live for Light Reading's interview with Jay Samit, the newly appointed CEO of publicly traded SeaChange International Inc. With a resume that includes Sony, EMI, Universal, Intel and Microsoft, Samit brings a reputation as an entrepreneur and a disruptor to his new role at the video solutions company. Hear what he has to say about the opportunities in video, as well as the outlook for cable, telco, OTT and mobile service providers.