ATLANTA -- SCTE Cable-Tec Expo 2011 -- Cox Communications Inc. will start streaming linear TV channels to tablets later this year, joining a cable club started by Cablevision Systems Corp. and Time Warner Cable Inc.
Cox President Patrick Esser let the cat out of the bag here this morning, mentioning that the MSO will launch that product, called Cox TV Connect, by Christmas 2011. No word yet on which tablets will be supported initially, but consider the iPad to be on that list.
Considering that Cox already offers several Android smartphones models for a mobile service that runs on the Sprint Nextel Corp. network, it's likely that tablets that run the Google OS should be at or near the front of the line, too.
The subject came up as Esser and Motorola Mobility Inc. Chairman and CEO Sanjay Jha were rapping on stage during the opening session about how cable is trying to ratchet up its pace of innovation.
Esser acknowledged that the introduction of the iPad has kicked cable in the pants, noting that it will have taken the MSO just nine months to get TV Connect in front of the consumer from the time the project was greenlighted.
Comcast Corp., cable's biggest MSO, has threatened to launch a similar live TV app, but hasn't revealed a launch date. (See Comcast Keeps Eye on the iPad Prize.)
â€” Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable