tech in the spotlight
Posted by Barry Silverstein on January 8, 2013 11:16 AM
The annual International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) that's now underway in Las Vegas is not only the world's biggest trade show, but a snapshot of how the fast-moving world of technology innovation is impacting sectors. Witness automotive, such as Ford's just-announced mobile partnerships to enhance the brand's in-car connectivity platform as part of a bigger CES push by car manufacturers this year.
CES is also a soapbox for competitors to one-up one another as they spit out product announcements and flaunt new alliances. This year, the rivalry is particularly fierce in the web TV/digital streaming arena.
"As new Internet TV players look to invade the living room, some cable and satellite operators are stepping up their embrace of Web technology to jazz up aging interfaces and head off subscriber defections, the Wall Street Journal reports from the show.
CES attendees include DirecTV and Dish Network on the satellite side, Verizon (FiOS) and AT&T (U-verse) touting Telco TV, and U.S. multi-system operators including Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Cox Communications are at CES to recast themselves as web TV purveyors and shake off the dreaded "cable operator" moniker. No wonder the U.S. National Cable & Telecommunications Association is reportedly considering dropping "cable" and rebranding to the U.S. Internet and Television Association (but, oddly, keeping the NCTA acronym).
AT&T's U-verse platform is introducing "Screen Pack," a $5 per month addition to existing subscriptions which enables customers to stream some 1,500 on-demand movies. AT&T plans to add more content in the future in an effort to thwart the flood of video streaming competitors in the space.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on August 24, 2012 08:55 AM
Apple and Samsung wait for jury to plow through complex case as Apple tries to thwart efforts by Google and its Motorola Mobility to ban iPhone and iPad imports into U.S.
Lance Armstrong says he'll stop fighting U.S. doping authority, faces loss of Tour de France titles.
Best Buy carries out drama with founder over control of company.
Boeing strains to make Dreamliner program profitable.
Bristol-Myers Squibb drops Hepatitis C drug after patient death.
Chrysler mulls boosting Ram truck production to meet rising demand.
Cox Communications debuts multi-platform football-based campaign.
Current TV to turn over half the screen to Twitter during convention coverage.
Daimler mulls building compact Mercedes cars with Renault-Nissan, report says. Continue reading...
let's make a deal
Posted by Sheila Shayon on December 2, 2011 02:17 PM
Verizon Wireless, the largest U.S. mobile-phone carrier, is spending $3.6 billion to buy wireless spectrum from SpectrumCo, a cable joint venture that includes Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, with each receiving $2.3 billion, $1.1 billion, and $189 million, respectively, to sell their share in the JV to Verizon.
As a result of the deal, the cable operators will resell Verizon Wireless service instead of operating their own wireless brand in SpectrumCo. Or as the New York Times puts it, "Instead of creating its own wireless services, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House will market Verizon’s service, and in turn Verizon will market the cable companies in their respective local markets."
Verizon is hungry for more airwaves to accommodate increasing consumer demand from mobile devices to watch video and browse the Internet, and the deal will yield 122 Advanced Wireless Services (AWS) licenses, improving 4G services to its customers. "Spectrum is the raw material on which wireless networks are built, and buying the AWS spectrum now solidifies our network leadership into the future," stated Dan Mead, president and CEO of Verizon Wireless.
Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House will be able to provide wireless service to customers via Verizon’s network and Verizon Wireless is free to sell their products, including pay-TV, in its stores.
It’s also the end of a dream for the three U.S. cable operators to create and manage their own wireless network. "It's really hard for a cable company to expect to compete in a highly competitive wireless market," commented Time Warner Cable spokesman Alex Dudley to the Wall Street Journal. "We got a good price for the spectrum. An arrangement like this makes a lot of sense."Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on August 1, 2011 12:00 PM
Qatar-based Al Jazeera finally has a toehold in Manhattan after months of persistent pressure on U.S cable and satellite systems.
Al Jazeera English (AJE) is now being simulcast in New York City 23 hours a day on RISE, a cable channel adjunct to WRNN, which is carried by Time Warner Cable and rival Verizon FiOS. The deal makes AJE available starting today on Time Warner Cable's channel 92, with FiOS channel 466 adding the feed in the coming days, for a total reach of 2 million New York area homes.
As part of its carriage contract, RISE must carry one hour of daily local programming; now, the other 23 hours will be a live feed of AJE. While the contract gives Al Jazeera a presence in a key U.S. market, it's hitting the Big Apple via a sublease deal as opposed to outright carriage deal, which means its opportunities for marketing and branding are hindered.
“It’s all about leverage in this business, and they don’t have any,” observed Paul Maxwell, a cable industry consultant, to the New York Times.Continue reading...
Posted by Shirley Brady on May 24, 2011 06:00 PM
As UK mobile payment startups join forces in $87 million merger, Google is expected to announce mobile wallet with Macy's, Subway and American Eagle Outfitters as charter retail partners.
Fiat chairman and James Murdoch vie for control of F1 racing brand.
Google harnesses ocean water to cool Finnish data center.
L'Oreal and other luxury brand execs project strong 2011, more M&A.
Orbitz targeted for advertising on Fox News.
Rick Santorum is expected to throw his hat in the GOP race for the White House.Continue reading...