10:30 AM --
Let's get this out of the way up front: Cable doesn't want the
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to move ahead on AllVid, a potential successor to the CableCARD that would create headaches not just for cable operators, but for telco and satellite TV operators as well.
The cable industry's argument is that the market for smart video devices is moving forward rapidly on its own and doesn't need another expensive government mandate to spur it on. Cable also holds that more rules would only slow innovation down to a crawl.
Comcast followed that up this week with a filing at the FCC that describes that relationship and sheds light on some other CE-related tidings. You can read it all here, but these the newsier highlights:
Comcast and AllVid champion TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) are working on a way to bring the MSO's Xfinity On Demand to TiVo CableCARD devices. "We are aiming to start trialing the service later this year," the MSO said. There aren't any technical details in there, but it's most likely that the TiVo box's IP return path will be used to set up the VoD sessions in tandem with the SeaChange International Inc. (Nasdaq: SEAC) backoffice. (tru2way probably won't have a role in the TiVo VoD implementation.) (See No Tru2way? No Problem .)
Comcast "will soon launch a trial to deliver private IP-based cable services to PCs and Macs." Again, no technical details yet, but it would probably involve some sort of IP video simulcast that could conceivably also include support for devices like iPads. (See Comcast Keeps Eye on the iPad Prize.)
Comcast has already announced plans to integrate its Xfinity On Demand service on connected TVs from Samsung, but the MSO is working with other device manufacturers to offer similar services on a "broad range of IP-enabled devices." At this week's CTAM conference in New York, Comcast Converged Products President Sam Schwartz said the MSO has identified game consoles, more connected TVs and Roku Inc. boxes among the likely initial targets. (See Comcast to Swing Xcalibur Wide in 2012.)