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August 22, 2012
Welcome to the broadband and cable news roundup, Hump Day edition.
Multiple reports say Verizon Wireless and its cable friends already have enough votes at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to push through the carrier's proposed purchase of the MSOs' Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski has already stated he'll vote in favor of the deal, but both Bloomberg and Multichannel News report that the FCC's two Republican FCC Commissioners -- Robert McDowell and Ajit Pai -- have cast votes to approve it as well, which is enough to take it over the top. The U.S. Department of Justice , which has been consulting with the FCC on the proposed transaction, approved the deal (with conditions) on Aug. 16. (See 5 Ways the Verizon Spectrum Deal Could Affect You and Cable OK to Attack FiOS With Verizon Wireless).)
Cox Communications Inc. , following the lead of operators such as Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), is getting more serious about the home security and automation market. After conducting a pilot in Arizona last year, the MSO intends to launch home security services to additional markets in 2012, but it's keeping mum on where so as not to tip off the competition. Cox has appointed Vince Groff to GM of Cox's new home security business. He joined Cox in 2000 as director of video product development. (See Will Service Providers Steal ADT's Customers? and Comcast Goes Big With Xfinity Home .)
Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) has launched an encoder outfitted with High Efficiency Video Coding (HEVC)/H.265, a new bandwidth-saving compression scheme that's expected to be about 50 percent more efficient than H.264. Ericsson sees H.265 being used to deliver live TV over mobile networks, though some also see the technology playing a role in the budding 4K/8K hi-def formats. H.265 was issued as a draft international standard in July. (See A Glimpse of Ultra-HD and Photos: Comcast/NBCU Ultra-HD Demo .)
zeebox , a U.K.-based social TV startup, will soon enter the U.S. market with a partnership and investment from Comcast in tow, reports TechCrunch.
Jay Leno let loose a few zingers on Monday after his new bosses forced The Tonight Show to lay off some staff, with the host reportedly taking a pay cut to prevent even deeper cuts. The show is still a late-night ratings winner, but it's just not as profitable, hence the budget cuts. But, as this segment of his opening monologue shows, Leno's having none of that.
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable
Senior Editor, Light Reading
Baumgartner also served as Site Editor for Light Reading Cable from 2007-2013. In between his two stints at Light Reading, he led tech coverage for Multichannel News and was a regular contributor to Broadcasting + Cable. Baumgartner was named to the 2018 class of the Cable TV Pioneers.
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