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Set-top boxes

Pace Notches Mediacom Win

Mediacom Communications, the eighth-largest cable operator in the US, is teeing up deployments of the Pace MG1 media gateway with TiVo's Advanced User Interface platform.

In an announcement that was initially scheduled to be released during the SCTE Cable-Tec Expo show last month, Pace plc said that Mediacom Communications Corp. will begin deploying the hybrid QAM/IP video gateways this month across its entire subscriber footprint. Mediacom, which has been a Pace customer since 2006, covers parts of the South and Midwest, including regions in Iowa, Illinois, Minnesota, Georgia, and Florida, and has about 1 million video subscribers.

The Mediacom news took a backseat for Pace last month when the hardware company finalized a surprise bid to acquire Aurora Networks Inc. for $310 million. That move solidified Pace's position as one of the heavyweight technology vendors in the US cable market, which is still largely dominated by Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) and Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO). Pace was a prime contender for the Motorola Home business last year before it ultimately lost out to rival Arris. (See Pace Picks Up Speed and Pace: Motorola Home Deal Wasn't Worth It.)

Although the Mediacom news may pale next to Pace's acquisition announcement, it still shows important traction for the company's whole-home media platform in North America. Pace won a breakthrough deal with Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) in 2011 to become the first hardware provider for the giant MSO's X1 IP video platform. Comcast says X1 has now rolled out to 90 percent of its service area, with plans to complete the deployment by year's end. (See Comcast Spreads IP Video Love.)

Internationally, Pace leapfrogged over Cisco and Arris in the most recent quarter to become the top set-top supplier in the world, according to Infonetics Research Inc. (See Set-Top Revenues Droop in Q2 .)

Naturally, the Mediacom deployment is also good news for TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO). Pace and TiVo have a global partnership in place, which led to a joint deployment with Alaskan cable operator General Communication Inc. (GCI) (Nasdaq: GNCMA) this past summer.

TiVo has also announced several other cable deals recently, including an agreement with Atlantic Broadband to deploy the vendor's new Roamio digital video recorder. TiVo's other major MSO customers include Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED), RCN Corp. , Charter Communications Inc. , Suddenlink Communications , and Midcontinent Communications (Midco) . (See Atlantic Broadband Courts TiVo’s Roamio.)

— Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading Cable

albreznick 11/19/2013 | 9:50:12 PM
Re: TiVo Yep, Dan. And TiVo just noteched a deal earlier today with another cable operator, Blue Ridge Commnications. Not a big operator, to be sure, but significant enough. So TiVo's cable strategy seems to be going strong. 
DOShea 11/18/2013 | 11:27:11 PM
TiVo Agree this is pretty big for TiVo, too, as it continues to re-cast itself, at least to some degree, as a software/interface provider.
albreznick 11/18/2013 | 9:14:39 PM
Keeping up the pace Between this deal and the Aurora buyout, Pace is really on a roll lately. Where will they strike next? Are Cisco and Arris hearing footsteps yet? Probably not. but they may be starting to sweat a bit.  
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