Welcome to the broadband and cable news roundup, Hump Day edition.
Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) has launched an app that lets FiOS TV customers stream a subset of its live, linear TV lineup and more than 20,000 video-on-demand titles from its "Flex View" library to certain models of connected TVs and Blu-ray players from Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. (Korea: SEC). Mimicking what Verizon's already doing on the Xbox 360, the app offers 26 live channels from FiOS TV, including ESPN News (but not the flagship ESPN channel or any of the national broadcast networks), CNN, TBS and MTV, as well as premium networks HBO and Cinemax. Verizon is playing up the fact that FiOS TV customers can now receive some programming on these alternative platforms (it says support for more devices is in the works) without an operator-supplied set-top box, but customers will still need a Verizon box to get the telco's full video offering. But Verizon's promised to add more channels "in the very near future." Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK), Time Warner Cable Inc. (NYSE: TWC) and DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV) also have deals in place to offer programming on connected Samsung devices. (See Samsung TVs Tune in DirecTV's UI and CES 2011: Samsung Puts MSOs in the Picture.)
The Kindle Fire is the latest device to support Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC)'s Optimum App. In addition to streaming Cablevision's full live TV lineup, the app also provides access to the MSO's VoD library, a remote DVR manager and a cloud-based navigation system. The caveat is that live TV on the tablet is only accessible from within reach of the customer's home Wi-Fi signal. Cablevision already offers the Optimum App on iOS devices and PCs and Macs. It's also getting ready to offer a version of its fancy UI for set-top boxes in the fourth quarter. (See Cablevision Packs More Video Into the Cloud.)
Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH) lost 10,000 video subs in the second quarter, improving from the 135,000 subs it lost in the year-ago quarter and much better than the 100,000 analysts were originally expecting. But Dish whiffed the financials, posting net income of $226 million (50 cents per share) on revenues of $3.57 billion. Analysts were anticipating earnings of 68 cents per share and revenues of $3.64 billion.
Liberty Media Corp. (NYSE: LMC) CEO Greg Maffei says the company plans to spinStarz Entertainment LLC into a separate, publicly traded company in order to "provide better transparency" on the premium programmer's operating business, reports Deadline.com. The flagship Starz service, which continues to expand its slate of original programming, added 600,000 subscribers in the second quarter, extending its total to 20.7 million.