Light Reading
MSO takes step toward deploying its small, inexpensive HDTV boxes that can run on Cisco- and Moto-based networks

Comcast HD-DTAs Reach the FCC

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
12/6/2011
50%
50%

Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is nearing its goal of deploying high-definition versions of simple and inexpensive Digital Terminal Adapter (DTA) devices before the end of the year as an Xfinity-branded model made by Motorola Mobility LLC has passed through the hallowed halls of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)

The pint-sized device, dubbed the HD-DTA 100u and spotted Tuesday by Wireless Goodness, includes coax and HDMI-out ports as well as a remote control (here's the user's manual). The "u" in the model name means it's universal in the sense that it can run on cable networks based on Motorola- or Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) digital video security systems. Early standard-definition-only DTAs made by Moto, Pace plc and Technicolor SA (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH) could only run on Motorola-based networks. (See DTAs Getting Smaller, Cheaper & 'Universal'.)

Comcast declined to comment on its deployment plans for the device, which are expected to cost $50 per unit or less as production volumes ramp up. Comcast told CED in August that it was looking to get HD-DTA field trials underway in 2011 and that some customers might start to get them before the end of the year.

Why this matters
Having a device get through the FCC puts Comcast one step closer to deploying a new type of DTA that's capable of rendering HD signals and is much less expensive that the current line of two-way, HD-capable digital cable boxes. HD-DTAs are inherently one-way (downstream-only), meaning they can't send signals up the plant to initiate video-on-demand streams, but IP-connected devices like the iPad theoretically could "force-tune" a DTA to get around that hurdle. (See Comcast: DTAs Can Be 'Force-Tuned' .)

Comcast has already deployed millions of SD-DTAs in support of its "Project Cavalry" initiative, which was put into place to help Comcast reclaim analog spectrum and reapply it toward its growing linear lineup of HDTV channels. (See Comcast's $1B Bandwidth Plan .)

Getting to this point is significant in that it required a special waiver from the FCC to allow cable operators to deploy HD-DTAs with embedded security, a movement that was originally championed by Tier 2 MSO Cable ONE Inc. .

For more
Read more about HD-DTAs and their path through the FCC meat grinder.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

(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 Interviews
Liberty Global Sees Business Goldmine

12|18|14   |     |   (0) comments


Steen Sorensen, VP of business services for Liberty Global, explains where the giant international MSO sees growth potential.
LRTV Documentaries
EE: The Road to 5G

12|16|14   |   16:02   |   (1) comment


Andy Sutton, the principal network architect at UK mobile operator EE, explains how his company is using Wembley stadium as a wireless test bed and how that's helping EE to plan the evolution to 5G.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Highlights of Huawei's NFV Open Cloud Forum 2014

12|16|14   |     |   (0) comments


Huawei hosted its inaugural NFV Open Cloud Forum during the SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014 in Düsseldorf, Germany. The Forum brought together technology thought leaders, senior executives and telecom professionals from global carriers, industry associations, as well as other partner companies in the ecosystem, to exchange views on and collectively explore how ...
LRTV Custom TV
Realizing Operators' Digital Vision

12|16|14   |   5:23   |   (0) comments


Leveraging technology is fundamental to digital transformation but understanding customers and serving them really well is at the heart of digital businesses. TM Forum lists the following as the strategic pillars of the digital business: business agility and rapid innovation, operational agility and effectiveness, IT and data centricity, plus customer centricity. ...
LRTV Documentaries
US Cellular Injects Analytics Into LTE

12|16|14   |   2:57   |   (1) comment


US Cellular's Mario Vela explains how the operator uses analytics for network planning and what comes next as the carrier looks to eke more value out of its metrics.
LRTV Interviews
How Cox Biz Plans to Keep Growing

12|15|14   |     |   (2) comments


Steve Rowley, SVP of Cox Business, details how the third-biggest US MSO intends to boost its revenues to $2 billion and beyond over the rest of the decade
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Interview With Bill Zhang, Director of SoftCOM Product Management, Huawei

12|15|14   |   2:50   |   (0) comments


Bill Zhang elaborated on Huawei's open philosophy in NFV solution development and network architecture design at the SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Event Highlights: Huawei at SDN & OpenFlow World Congress 2014

12|15|14   |   3:43   |   (0) comments


Huawei joined the 2014 SDN & OpenFlow Congress as one of the key sponsors and contributors. At the event, Huawei reinforced the openness and flexibility of its network infrastructure strategies, and provided updates on its SDN and NVF innovations. Through participations at the exhibitions, forums and speeches, Huawei encouraged the industry to "think bigger and ...
LRTV Interviews
How Cable Biz Services Hit $10B Mark

12|12|14   |     |   (1) comment


Cable operators reached $10 billion in annual business services revenues by delving deeper into their vertical markets and expanding beyond the smallest firms.
LRTV Documentaries
Mediacom Aims to Test Connected Tractors

12|11|14   |   05:07   |   (3) comments


Cable business service provider is taking its services to the 'agribusiness' sector in partnership with farm equipment specialist John Deere and is getting involved in Gigabit Cities developments.
LRTV Interviews
TWC Business Looks Beyond $3B

12|10|14   |     |   (0) comments


TWC Business Services chief Phil Meeks explains how his unit has reached $3 billion in annual revenues and what its plans are for next year.
LRTV Documentaries
AT&T's New Security Strategy

12|10|14   |   02:36   |   (1) comment


AT&T's Chief Security Officer Ed Amoroso explains how his company is wrapping virtual security layers around micro network domains.
Upcoming Live Events
February 10, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
March 17, 2015, The Cable Center, Denver, CO
April 14, 2015, The Westin Times Square, New York City, NY
May 6, 2015, McCormick Convention Center, Chicago, IL
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
Hot Topics
Vodafone to Ride T-Mobile Back Into US
Dan Jones, Mobile Editor, 12/12/2014
1-Gig: Coming to a Small Town Near You
Jason Meyers, Senior Editor, Gigabit Cities/IoT, 12/17/2014
T-Mobile, BlackBerry Flirt With Reuniting
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 12/17/2014
Gardner's Departure a Cautionary Tale
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 12/12/2014
T-Mobile Lights Up 27 Wideband LTE Cities
Sarah Reedy, Senior Editor, 12/15/2014
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Upcoming Webinars
Webinar Archive