IP video

Windstream Ramps Up TV & Commercial Biz

Windstream is making noise with new plans for its Kinetic TV offering, and the announcement of a major commercial customer win with the Department of Veterans Affairs.

Still new to the television game, Windstream Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: WIN) only launched its IP-based Kinetic TV service in April of this year. Now the telco says it has contracted with Arris Group Inc. (Nasdaq: ARRS) to provide both the NVG343 gateway and various IP set-tops to Kinetic TV customers. The equipment allows subscribers to stream HD video wirelessly throughout the home and access whole-home DVR features.

"With Kinetic, customers receive fast, high-quality, interactive television with modern features that people expect from their service provider," said Windstream Vice President Bryan Brooks in a statement. "Arris has been a great partner in helping Windstream deliver the whole-home interactive experience that makes Kinetic a superior alternative to satellite and cable."

The Arris deal isn't the only video news out of Windstream, however. The telco also announced it has signed an extended renewal agreement with Synacor Inc. for that company's Next-Gen Portal product and its Search & Discovery Metadata Platform for Multiscreen TV. Synacor promises that its technology will give Windstream customers a "newly-redesigned, consumer-centric UI," as well as an easier way to discover and enjoy favorite content.

Windstream previously announced that its multiscreen television service runs on the Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC) Mediaroom middleware platform. Kinetic TV is available to more than 50,000 homes in Lincoln, Neb.

On the commercial services front, Windstream's big news this week is a new contract with the VA Office of Information and Technology (OIT). The telco said it was one of three companies chosen to provide voice and Ethernet services to 2,100 VA facilities around the country. (The other two vendors were not readily apparent.) In addition to delivering phone and data network access, Windstream will also support telehealth initiatives geared toward rural patients and their doctors.

For more news from the world of Ethernet, check out our dedicated Ethernet equipment content channel here on Light Reading.

Windstream has made a big push in the Ethernet market in recent years, including launching its own Carrier Switched Ethernet solution in 2013. The company said in June that its carrier customers are the ones driving demand for the highest-capacity network services, but that enterprises are also starting to express interest in 100GE networks for hub sites and data centers. (See BTE 2015: Windstream CTO on GigE Trends.)

The Windstream agreement with the VA extends over the next five years and could be worth up to $450 million in that time.

— Mari Silbey, Senior Editor, Cable/Video, Light Reading

kq4ym 8/8/2015 | 3:31:52 PM
Re: Kinetic That $450 million package for the VA should surely be interesting to watch, not only to update their exisiting infrastructure but to expand into access into the rural areas around those offices for some future telemedicine capabilities.
mhhf1ve 8/6/2015 | 5:22:06 PM
Skeptical of TV service that come with its own UI... I suppose video interfaces have gotten better over the years, but my default position is that most UI menu systems that come with cable or teclo provided TV... is a bit buggy. It's surprising how hard it is to copy TiVo! 
DOShea 8/5/2015 | 10:19:13 PM
Kinetic When Windstream started talking about this, it was only a single market rollout, right? It didn't seem like much of a TV push and strange timing, although if they're getting more ambitious about expanding it, that would be interesting.
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