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A new Cisco box made for Comcast has shown up in an FCC filing, while Charter has confirmed that Humax will be a second supplier for its Worldbox set-top initiative.
January 22, 2015
For all the talk of its demise, it appears the set-top business is still going strong. Two new set-top deals surfaced this week: one involving Cisco boxes for Comcast and the other centering on Humax as a supplier for Charter's new Worldbox initiative.
The Comcast news comes via the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) (and Janko Roettgers at GigaOM). A recent FCC filing revealed that Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO) has developed an IP box that Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) is planning to deploy under its Xfinity brand. Dubbed the Xi4v1-C, the new set-top is similar to renderings that showed up on a DSLReports forum late last year, and it looks to be a successor to X1 boxes currently made by Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) and Pace Micro Technology . Multiple reports have speculated that the Cisco set-top won't include an on-board hard drive, but will instead rely on Comcast's cloud-based DVR service for content storage.
Get the latest updates on new video services and technologies by visiting Light Reading's video services content channel.
Meanwhile, Multichannel News reported that Charter Communications Inc. has selected Humax as a second supplier for the Worldbox set-tops that it plans to deploy later this year. Charter first announced Cisco as a partner for its new box line-up back at CES, but the design for Worldbox devices means that multiple companies can participate as vendor suppliers. Specifically, Charter's use of downloadable security technology makes it possible for a wide range of manufacturers to develop the Worldbox hardware that will support the operator's Spectrum-branded video service. (See Charter Thinks Outside the 'Worldbox' and Who Will Own Cable's Content Security?)
Arris is also hoping for a piece of the Charter Worldbox business. Although no agreement has been announced, Arris CEO Bob Stanzione said last week that he believes his company will maintain its set-top market share and ultimately become a Worldbox partner as well. (See Arris Likes Its Charter Chances Too.)
— Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading
Senior Editor, Cable/Video
Mari Silbey is a senior editor covering broadband infrastructure, video delivery, smart cities and all things cable. Previously, she worked independently for nearly a decade, contributing to trade publications, authoring custom research reports and consulting for a variety of corporate and association clients. Among her storied (and sometimes dubious) achievements, Mari launched the corporate blog for Motorola's Home division way back in 2007, ran a content development program for Limelight Networks and did her best to entertain the video nerd masses as a long-time columnist for the media blog Zatz Not Funny. She is based in Washington, D.C.
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