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Where Are the True Believers?

3:30 PM -- Multichannel News has uncovered some additional details about how Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) is going to deal with the separable security mandate, which went into effect in July. (See Countdown to 'Seven-Oh-Seven'.)

According to the report, Verizon has enlisted the help of the Alliance for Telecommunications Industry Solutions (ATIS) to develop an IP-enhanced version of the removable CableCARD, as well as an alternative downloadable conditional access system.

A "next-generation" CAS is referenced in a massive set-top request for proposal (RFP) Verizon issued earlier this year, and the result of it could ensure that the telco ends up complying with the mandate. (Verizon Set-Top RFP Could Be Worth Billions .)

But there seem to be some questions and outright disbelief about the number of set-tops (26.5 million units) we reported as being in the RFI, considering Verizon's current FiOS TV rollout plans and customer projections.

I have to admit that I did do a double-take when I saw that number again. Was this a typo, as was suggested? Was the decimal in the wrong place? Did I just hear it wrong?

Doubt started to creep in, so I thought I'd better double-check my sources on this one. As it turns out, the 26.5 million is not entirely accurate. I'm told the correct number cited in the RFI is 26,493,286. It's an excessive number, but there it is nonetheless.

Some other RFI nuggets: It's a five-year deal, with delivery slated to begin in the fourth quarter of 2008. Things will surely ramp up from there.

I don't have the exact date and time of the initial delivery. I'm just rounding up.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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