CableWatch: TV Everywhere's Ad Scramble

In this news round-up, content is in control in TV Everywhere deployments, and Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is inviting lots of theories about its plans for NBCU:

  • Comcast plans to leave decisions about ad placement and ad loads for TV Everywhere services to the content makers.

    The MSO is testing On Demand Online, its play on TV Everywhere, and has plans to launch it nationally later this year, offering it to existing subscription video customers. That effort will initially be offered via Comcast.net and Fancast, the MSO's online video hub, but execs say the plan is to allow authentication on broadband video sites run by the programmers themselves. (See Comcast Nears 'TV Everywhere' Launch.)

  • Chipmakers Entropic Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: ENTR) and Intellon Corp. (Nasdaq: ITLN) hope Multimedia over Coax Alliance (MoCA) and HomePlug AV can sing beautiful music together. The two announced today that they're collaborating on a high-speed home networking platform that can use both coax and powerline technologies. They claim the combo will offer a solid pathway to coming MoCA 2.0 and HPAV2 standards, which they say are expected to enable PHY rates in excess of 1 Gbit/s. (See Entropic, Intellon Combine MoCA & HomePlug.)

    They say momentum is on their side, citing that there are more than 55 million MoCA and HomePlug devices deployed around the globe.

    We'll have more on this later, but these two companies are coming together, perhaps not so coincidentally, just a few days after the International Telecommunication Union, Standardization Sector (ITU-T) ratified "key components" of the competing G.hn specification, though it claims it will coexist with other wireline networking standards. (See G.hn Specs Ratified.)

  • The Vivendi board is meeting today with a decision on what to do with its 20 percent stake in NBC Universal among the items reportedly on the agenda.

    Nothing's official yet, but the scuttlebutt is that Comcast is trying to craft a deal that would give it a 51 percent stake in a larger version of NBCU that would tie in the MSO's own programming assets. (See Keeping Up With Comcast .)

  • The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is vetting whether truth-in-billing and consumer info regulations already applied to wireline and wireless services should also be extended to subscription video and Internet services, including VoIP.

    In comments filed this week, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) argues that no new regulations are needed, as MSOs are already subject to billing and customer service standards at the federal, state, and local levels.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

    Interested in learning more on this topic? Then come to TelcoTV 2009, the telecom industry’s premier event for the exploration of a comprehensive entertainment convergence strategy, to be staged in Orlando, Fla., November 10-12. For more information, or to register, click here.

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