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Also: EchoStar posts Q4 loss; Dish to close more Blockbusters; Google picks Sanjay Jha's successor; lower STB shipments sting Technicolor

TiVo Developing Low-Cost IP Set-Top

Jeff Baumgartner
LR Cable News Analysis
Jeff Baumgartner
2/24/2012
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Welcome to the cable news roundup, T.G.I.F. edition.

  • TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) is developing an IP-based set-top that will launch "by the end of summer," company CEO and President Tom Rogers said on Thursday's earnings call. Rogers said the device will work in conjunction with a primary gateway as part of a new whole-home platform that can serve multiple TV sets hanging off the home network. TiVo already makes a non-DVR set-top for a whole-home set-up, but the new IP-only device aims to reduce costs, Rogers said, adding that it will become a "complement to the core TiVo unit." TiVo's current whole-home platform for MSOs teams the four-tuner Premiere Q gateway with a client box called the Preview. (See TiVo Tunes Up Multi-Room DVRs for Cable .)

  • Rogers also shed more light on a new accessory that TiVo previewed at the Consumer Electronics Show in January that can stream live and recorded content from the primary TiVo box to tablets, PCs and smartphones via Wi-Fi. The device, which will also let users side-load recorded content to mobile units, will handle four simultaneous video streams, Rogers said. TiVo hasn't revealed a launch date, but Rogers said it's expected out later this year.

  • EchoStar Corp. LLC (Nasdaq: SATS), Charlie Ergen's technology and set-top spin-off, posted a fourth-quarter loss of US$22 million on revenues of $384 million, up 62.6 percent from the year-ago quarter. Results included EchoStar's acquisition of Hughes Communications Inc. last year. (See EchoStar Shells Out $2B For Hughes.)

  • Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) will close another 500 Blockbuster stores deemed to be underperforming and unprofitable, the company said on Thursday's fourth-quarter earnings call. The latest cuts account for about a third of Blockbuster's remaining stores, according to Reuters. Last fall, Dish unveiled Blockbuster Movie Pass, its first integrated product bundle from its acquisition of the movie rental chain. (See Dish Bundles Up Blockbuster .)

  • Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) is expected to tap Denis Woodside to run Motorola Mobility LLC and succeed CEO Sanjah Jha when Google closes the acquisition, Bloomberg reports, adding that Woodside headed up Google's ad sales arm for the Americas before shifting gears to oversee the proposed merger. (See Cover Sheet: Google to Acquire Moto Mobility.)

  • Lower set-top shipments contributed to an 18 percent decline in revenues in the fourth quarter of 2011 at Technicolor SA (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH), which already has a restructuring underway that will result in the laying off of about 600 employees this year, notes Broadband TV News.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable



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