Cox Communications has selected an automated subscriber activation solution for high-speed data services from a little-known software start-up called Next Generation Broadband (NGB). NGB's Auto Install III system is unique in that it is fully network based, meaning no software needs to be installed on the customer's PC to activate service. Instead, customers simply purchase a cable modem, plug it in at home, open an Internet browser, follow the service activation instructions, and start surfing.
Behind the scenes, Auto Install III verifies the customer's billing information, sets up their user ID, password and email, configures the cable modem and activates service by interfacing with the MSO's provisioning and billing systems. NGB says the solution can handle more than 10,000 activations per day.
The Auto Install III solution is apparently so new, it is not yet mentioned on NGB's website (www.ngb.biz). Of course, nor is much of anything that has happened since 2004. We'll give NGB the benefit of the doubt and say that the management team, made up almost entirely of former Road Runner executives, is so busy developing innovative solutions, winning MSO accounts and serving them that they don't have time to worry about a minor issue like web site updates. We're not beyond falling into that trap ourselves.