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Cablevision Trademarks Mobile, RS-DVR Brands

Light Reading
LR Cable News Analysis
Light Reading
11/30/2010

Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) may be nearing the launch of two new products, Optimum Mobile and iO DVR Plus, according to recent trademark applications and a job listing advertised by the MSO.

Earlier this year, Cablevision said that it was testing a wireless phone product that could run on a hybrid of its home-grown WiFi network as well as on cellular networks. Cablevision recently began advertising the position of program manager of wireless services on Internet job sites.

Cablevision is looking for an executive with at least nine years of experience overseeing "large scale project management in telecom" to oversee the Optimum Mobile product, according to a Twitter message that Cablevision posted on Nov. 12.

During a conference call with analysts on May 6, Cablevision COO Tom Rutledge said that the company was testing a new wireless phone service. "We've been working with devices that switch back and forth between cellular and WiFi, and there's clearly an opportunity to build products there," Rutledge said. (See Cablevision Won’t Disable Fast-Forward on RS-DVR.)

Cablevision filed an application to trademark the brand "Optimum Mobile" on May 18, according to a filing with the US Patent and Trademark Office. The trademark could be used for "telecommunications services, namely wireless telephone services," according to the filing.

While Cablevision appears to be staffing up to develop a wireless phone product, the launch of its network-based Remote Storage-DVR (RS-DVR) may be more imminent. The company, which plans to launch its RS-DVR product in New York City during the fourth quarter, filed an application to use "iO DVR Plus" as the brand for the product, according to a November 17 USPTO filing. (See Cablevision's Ready for Streaming & Slinging.)

The iO DVR Plus brand would be used for "digital video recording services, entertainment services, namely, personalized and interactive entertainment services," the filing notes.

The DVR Plus brand also makes an appearance on the customer support section of its Website, telling subscribers that it is "currently conducting a consumer trial for a new service called DVR Plus."

As the MSO further explains: "The DVR Plus service is similar to our traditional DVR for iO service, with one exception, the recorded programs are stored on Cablevision's remote servers instead of storing the programs on the hard drive within the DVR cable box. DVR Plus will also allow you to watch any of your recorded programs on any one of your non-DVR digital cable boxes within your home."

Cablevision also secured the domain name DVRPlus.com on November 24, according to Network Solutions, which lists Cablevision’s CSC Holdings subsidiary as the registrant.

Officials at Cablevision declined to comment on questions regarding Optimum Mobile and DVR Plus.

— Steve Donohue, Special to Light Reading Cable



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