Video services

TiVo Plays VoD With Cisco

TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO)'s broadband-connected DVRs can now support cable video-on-demand (VoD) services running on some Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO)-based digital cable systems.

To do that, SeaChange International Inc. (Nasdaq: SEAC) and TiVo upgraded their Cardio software, which sets up VoD sessions and requests other data using an IP backchannel. Previously, Cardio could only run on Motorola Mobility LLC -based cable systems. Cardio lets TiVos outfitted with CableCARDs hook into cable VoD without supporting tru2way, a CableLabs -specified set-top middleware and headend platform. (See No Tru2way? No Problem .)

The Cardio update ties into SeaChange's legacy Axiom video back-office as well as Adrenalin, a new multi-screen version that support tablets and smartphones. Cardio also supports TiVo's user interface and its Premiere, Premiere Q and Preview DVR models. The four-tuner Premiere Q and non-DVR Preview boxes make up TiVo's new whole-home setup. (See TiVo Debuts Whole-Home DVR Gear.)

Why this matters
TiVo is banking part of its future on direct deals with domestic cable operators, including RCN Corp. , Suddenlink Communications and Charter Communications Inc. So being able to integrate its own over-the-top video capabilities with cable VoD services running on Moto- and Cisco-based systems is a key part of its U.S. strategy. TiVo is also counting on similar VoD integrations with operators such as Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) and Cox Communications Inc. to get an edge at retail.

But the upgrade of Cardio, software already in use by RCN and Suddenlink, solves just part of the puzzle. To help complete it, particularly in the U.S., TiVo will also need to ensure that its DVRs can also run VoD on Moto and Cisco systems that use video back-offices from Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) and Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS).

Update: TiVo confirmed late Thursday that it has completed integrations for both Ericsson and Arris backoffice systems running on Cisco and Moto digital platforms.

For more

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Light Reading Cable

Jeff Baumgartner 12/5/2012 | 5:23:46 PM
re: TiVo Plays VoD With Cisco

In response to questions, TiVo says it's previously deployed VoD integrations with other back office providers in both Motorola and Cisco head-end environments, but has yet to say if those were done on the Arris and/or Ericsson backoffice or the VoD backoffice of another vendor. We've also asked SEAC if any MSOs  using Cardio have completed TiVo VoD integrations on Cisco systems. JB

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