EchoStar Pays $18.9M to Settle NDS Suit

Today's cable news roundup kicks off with financial news involving Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)'s latest acquisition target.

  • EchoStar Corp. LLC (Nasdaq: SATS) has paid $18.9 million to U.K.-based NDS Ltd. to end a a legal spat from 2003, when EchoStar filed a $2 billion claim that accused NDS of hacking Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH)'s Nagravision SA -based video security system. Cisco agreed to acquire NDS for $5 billion last week. (See NDS Claims Win in EchoStar/Dish Hacking Case and Cisco Bets $5B More on Video With NDS.)

  • Aereo Inc. is "unlikely" to survive a copyright lawsuit it's facing from broadcasters over a TV/network DVR combo service that launched in New York City last week, according to Moody's Investors Service . Aereo's $12 per month service relies on thumb-sized antennas housed at a central facility to deliver over-the-air TV channels to customers via broadband. (See Aereo Strikes Back and Can Aereo Survive a Broadcaster Assault? )

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) EVP David Cohen and Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) EVP and General Counsel Randal Milch are among the witnesses that will face a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing Wednesday (March 21) at 2 p.m. ET related to Verizon Wireless 's proposed acquisition of Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) spectrum from Comcast, Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC), Bright House Networks and Cox Communications Inc. for almost $4 billion. (See Comcast: We Had AWS Plans, Honest! and Cable-VZ Wireless Deals to Face Senate Grilling .)

  • The National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) told the U.S. Department of Energy that the cable industry "fully supports improving energy efficiency of set-top boxes" through its own voluntary efforts, as opposed to a standards-based approach. CableLabs , for example, launched an initiative late last year dedicated to improving set-top energy consumption. (See Comcast's Strategy Chief Calls a Power Play .)

  • TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) Founder, CTO and SVP James Barton resigned on Friday, but will stay on as a consultant and will receive monthly payments of $25,000.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

  • Jeff Baumgartner 12/5/2012 | 5:39:03 PM
    re: EchoStar Pays $18.9M to Settle NDS Suit

    This potential for a mandate on STB energy consumption definitely has the cable guys worried, causing them to pour it on.  To show how its own efforts are paying off, CableLabs announced Monday that its Energy Lab is projecting energy savings of 20% or more when STBs shift into a new "light sleep" mode.  MSOs serving 85% of U.S. cable homes are committed to deploying this light sleep option beginning in September. JB


    AESerm 12/5/2012 | 5:39:01 PM
    re: EchoStar Pays $18.9M to Settle NDS Suit

    That sleep mode option requires new stbs? If so, this energy savings could take a while to accumulate. 

    Jeff Baumgartner 12/5/2012 | 5:38:59 PM
    re: EchoStar Pays $18.9M to Settle NDS Suit

    According to the announcement, MSOs will also provide software upgrades this fall to already deployed STBs that are capable of supporting this new light sleep mode, so it'll be a mix of new and legacy. Based on current commitments, CableLabs expects 10 million STBs to support the new mode by the end of 2012. JB





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