More than two years after teaming up with Roku on an OTT video service, Windstream plans to delve deeper into the video market with a new pay-TV service delivered over its fiber networks.
Windstream Communications Inc. (Nasdaq: WIN) announced Thursday that it will launch a next-gen TV service over its fiber lines in Lincoln, Neb. early next year. Known as Kinetic, the new service will feature video-on-demand, multiscreen viewing and whole-home DVR services. It will also allow viewers to watch up to six channels on their screens simultaneously and make use of wireless set-top boxes.
In its press release this morning, Windstream did not spell out how many linear channels of video programming will be offered. It also did not reveal its pricing plans for Kinetic or say how this new service will affect either its partnership with Roku Inc. on its existing Merge OTT streaming video service or its current satellite-TV distribution arrangement with Dish Network LLC (Nasdaq: DISH). The company has not yet responded to requests for more details. (See Windstream Prepares to Merge With OTT Video and Windstream Gets Hip to Over-the-Top Video.)
Windstream did disclose that Kinetic will be supported by Ericsson AB (Nasdaq: ERIC)'s Mediaroom platform. The company also said Kinetic will be sold together with its high-speed Internet and phone services, "which will be offered through highly competitive rates and bundling packages."
Plans call for rolling out Kinetic to more than 50,000 homes in Lincoln in the first half of 2015. The company said it will then extend Kinetic to "select additional Windstream communities in the latter part of 2015 and beyond."
Stay tuned for more details as Windstream President & CEO Jeff Gardner delivers a keynote address at the Broadband Vision conference in Las Vegas later today. Carol Wilson, Light Reading's Editor-at-Large, will be covering the keynote.
— Alan Breznick, Cable/Video Practice Leader, Light Reading