Video services

Cablevision's DVR From Afar

1:05 PM -- Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) has launched a Web-based app that allows digital video subs to program their DVRs remotely, joining a club that already includes members such as Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ), AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T), and DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV).

Cablevision said it has made the app available across its service area to customers who subscribe to Optimum Online (its cable modem service) and, of course, have a Cablevision set-top with an on-board DVR (just in case you were wondering). (See Cablevision Rolls Out Remote DVR Access.)

There's an FAQ about how to use the thing here, but generally speaking, customers must sign on at the MSO's Optimum.net customer portal to gain access to it.

Remote Access

The Cablevision app allows customers who use multiple DVRs to assign "names" to those devices and manage recordings on them separately. Customers can also specify a default "favorite" DVR.

Cablevision launched a mobile phone application in April. The remote DVR programming feature isn't offered there yet, but it will be eventually. We're told to "stay tuned" on that one. (See Cablevision Mobilizes Content Play.)

Another obvious candidate for Cablevision's remote DVR programming app is the MSO's Remote-Storage DVR (RS-DVR), a network-based DVR that looks to have steered clear of any further legal entanglements after the U.S. Supreme Court declined to give it a look. (See Supremes Stand Clear of RS-DVR Case.)

At last check, Cablevision was thinking about a summer launch for the RS-DVR, so it appears that the initial rollout has been delayed. Cablevision hasn't publicized an official launch date for the RS-DVR, and it's difficult to tell if the MSO will flip the switch even this year. (See Summer Debut for Cablevision Network DVR.)

"We are continuing to develop and test a variety of products and service enhancements that use remote-storage DVR technology to deliver additional value and convenience to our customers, and we look forward to sharing more details in the coming months," a Cablevision spokesman notes via email.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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