Central to the new service are Cisco's IP-connected Explorer 8642 HD-DVR and 4642 HD boxes, which make up the whole home DVR setup, and Voyager Vantage, Cisco's browser-based guide that supports HTML 4/5 authoring environments.
Rogers's new product can also feed live TV channels to tablets such as the Samsung Corp. Galaxy Tab and Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) iPad, but it's limiting access to devices that are within reach of the customer's home Wi-Fi signal. Early on, Rogers is also limiting the devices' streaming-channel options to 22, including ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox.
The Diamond package, tops among NextBox 2.0's four service tiers, sells for C$181.20 (US$181.41) per month and includes Rogers's HD video tier, a Galaxy Tab and the MSO's 75Mbit/s (downstream) Docsis 3.0 service, which comes with a monthly consumption limit of 250 gigabytes before overage fees kick in.
At the low end is Silver, which includes the digital basic tier and the 18Mbit/s (downstream) Express Internet package for C$86.13 (US$86.25) per month. All tiers come with a 1-Terabyte DVR extender. Rogers is lifting HD-DVR rental fees for six months to customers who agree to a two-year contract.
Why this matters
In addition to going cloud-heavy with a next-generation video platform, Rogers is demonstrating the kind of hybrid QAM/IP approach that other major MSOs in North America will be pursuing in 2012 as they try to stop the erosion of their video subscriber bases.
Cisco, meanwhile, gets a North American cable showcase for Videoscape, an architecture that's central to Cisco's new video strategy as more of its service-provider customers start to adopt IP and look to pipe services to devices other than the TV. Other Videoscape customers include Telus Corp. (NYSE: TU; Toronto: T) (a Rogers competitor) and Numericable-SFR .
It's also an early look at Cisco's Videoscape-powered set-top boxes -- even as some industry sources say Cisco is trying to unload set-top boxes in general.
More about Videoscape and the recent Cisco set-top rumors.
- Why Cisco Wants Out of Set-Tops (Or Not)
- Cisco: 'We Love Set-Top Boxes'
- Numericable Uses Cisco's Videoscape
- Cisco's Videoscape Stresses Cloud Control
- Can Videoscape Save Cisco's Set-Top Business?
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable