TW Cable Unleashes 'Look Back'
Look Back is the follow-on to TWC's "Start Over" service, which lets subs restart selected shows (those that the MSO has right for) already in progress. To keep advertisers and programming partners happy, Look Back, like Start Over, disables the fast-forward function. Other traditional trick-play functions such as rewind and pause functions remain in tact, however.
Look Back, in one sense, is a limited network DVR that plays nice with programming partners. Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) is taking a much different approach with its Remote-Storage DVR by letting customers rent out server space on the network and manually set individual recordings. (See Cablevision's Ready for Streaming & Slinging and Cablevision Won’t Disable Fast-Forward on RS-DVR.)
In another sense, Look Back aims to help TWC compete with over-the-top options such as Hulu LLC , though access to Look Back, at least for now, is limited to set-top boxes. [Ed. note: TWC is developing a video strategy for iPads and other mobile video devices. (See TWC Preaches Openness With iPad Tilt .)]
TWC hasn't launched Look Back in all its systems, but does have it up in systems serving New York, New England, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Wisconsin, and portions of Texas.
Look Back is starting off with support for 48 channels (24 in standard-def, and 24 in HD), giving subs access to episodes immediately after they airs on linear channels.
— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable