Video services

DirecTV Could Unleash Its Own Ad-Zapper

Here's what's pushing cable's and broadband's buttons Tuesday morning.
  • Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) apparently does not have the market on automatic ad-zapping technology cornered. Rival satellite TV service provider DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV) could enable its DVRs to do the same thing, CEO Mike White said Monday, reminding folks at the Reuters Global Media and Technology Summit in New York that DirecTV bought rights to similar ad-skipping technology five years ago from now-defunct DVR pioneer ReplayTV. "We haven't chosen to use it," White said. "It's not clear to me there's a raging demand from consumers for it." Or, here's another reason why DirecTV might want to hold back: Dish and some major TV broadcasters are fighting it out in the courts over Dish's new AutoHop service. (See Ad-Zapper Counters OTT Threat, Dish Chief Says and Dish, Broadcasters Go to War Over Ad-Zapper .)

  • Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK)'s NBCUniversal LLC unit and Dial Global Inc. have teamed to create NBC Sports Radio Network, a firm that will focus on national and regional programming and take on ESPN Radio, reports Bloomberg. The service, expected to launch in September, follows a recent deal between NBC and Dial to create a 24-hour radio news service called NBC News Radio Networks.

  • Comcast's app for the Xfinity Home security/automation service now supports Android (versions 2.2/Froyo to 2.3.7/Gingerbread). Comcast has already introduced a similar app for the iPhone as it prepares to deploy Xfinity Home to most markets by year's end. The app lets users check the status of the home security/monitoring system, manage and control lighting, thermostats and alarms, and stream video from home-side security cameras. (See Comcast Goes Big With Xfinity Home .)

  • Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT) scored a deal to provide video processing gear to power Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED)'s HD coverage of the 2012 London Olympics from the BBC. Under the deal, Virgin will use a mix of Harmonic's Electra 8000 encoders, ProStream 1000 multiplexers, alongside the vendor's digital service manager and video analytics software platform to deliver 24 HD feeds dedicated to the Games in MPEG-2 and MPEG-4 formats.

    — Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

  • Titanius 12/5/2012 | 5:28:29 PM
    re: DirecTV Could Unleash Its Own Ad-Zapper

    I understand why some might call it an attack on the television industries ecosystem, but to me it appears more like it is only forcing the ecosystem to evolve. The other television providers may have their own ad skipping technology but Dish is certainly leading the pack. With school and full time work at Dish it is difficult to find anytime to relax and watch TV. Now that I can use the Auto Hop feature I have an extra four hours of time every week. If it were not for people coming up with ideas to make peoples lives easier we wouldn’t have any inventions right now, let alone television sets.

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