Google Targets MSOs With YouTube Overhaul

Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)'s plan to overhaul YouTube Inc. with more premium-level fare leads today's cable news roundup.

  • Hoping to compete with cable and broadcast networks, Google is working on a "major rehaul" of YouTube to organize video into 20 channels featuring several hours of professionally produced content, according to The Wall Street Journal.

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) wants to keep the terms of its deal with Hulu LLC top secret, telling the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that a document it plans to file detailing its agreement with the Web video site contains info that could give third parties a "detailed understanding of Hulu's decision making process." You can read the full contents of the letter here.

  • As it shops for a buyer, Insight Communications Co. Inc. continues to upgrade cable systems. It's converting to an all-digital lineup in Louisville, Ky., a move that expands its HD lineup to 100 channels.

  • Comcast launched its Xfinity Signature Support service in Houston, boasting that its team of field techs will tackle "anything that gets an IP address." (See Comcast Debuts Xfinity Signature Support .)

  • Azuki Systems is targeting cable with a "Media Everywhere" software architecture that hooks into MSO content delivery systems and allows them to bridge video to devices powered by the full range of mobile operating systems. CEO John Clancy says the initial focus is on video-on-demand -- with live TV apps in the wings -- noting that Azuki is starting to kick off trials with at least five Tier 2 MSOs. (See Azuki Targets TV Everywhere.)

  • There's at least one Netflix Inc. (Nasdaq: NFLX) skeptic. Rocco Pendola says pricey deals for rights to Mad Men and other series have left Netflix "in over its head," and that it is "spending itself into a future it cannot afford." (See Netflix Spends Mad Money on Mad Men.)

  • While some cable networks are focused on distributing content on the Web and mobile devices, HGTV's multiplatform approach includes the launch of a print magazine.

  • Cox Communications Inc. hiked the monthly fees for its basic cable and expanded basic programming packages in Louisiana by $4.

  • Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) CEO Glenn Britt took home $17.3 million in compensation last year, up 10 percent from 2009.

    — Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable, and Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

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