|Cable Operators Shift
Strategies to Meet Telco IPTV Threat, New Report Finds
Other Articles: IPTV Edgeware
June 12, 2006
MSOs get more aggressive about adding IPTV-like elements to their
core video programming networks, says Heavy Reading
New York, NY -- Cable companies are revamping their video programming
offerings to fend off growing competition from IPTV services being
launched by incumbent phone companies, adding more interactive
services to their existing MPEG/QAM broadcast networks, according to
a major new report from Heavy Reading (http://www.heavyreading.com),
the market research division of Light Reading Inc. (http://www.lightreading.com).
|Cable Next-Gen Video Plans and the Future of IP delves deeply into
the next-generation video plans of North American multiple system
operators (MSOs) as they prepare for the coming assault from telco
IPTV and continue to defend against the competitive threat of
direct-broadcast satellite providers.
The report analyzes the evolution of cable video from both a
technology perspective and a business perspective, focusing not just
on how MSOs are changing their networks, but also on how they are
changing their business models with respect to video on demand (VOD)
and the growing trend toward non- linear programming in general.
"MSOs have no near-term plans to swap out their existing
infrastructure to adopt end-to-end IP, nor is this type of move
immediately necessary," notes Sterling Perrin, Senior Analyst with
Heavy Reading and author of the report. "In the near term, the MSOs
plan to mimic the interesting features of IPTV using their existing
Perrin adds, however, that switched digital video (SDV) could be a
precursor to an MSO move to an end-to-end IP network -- once SDV
proves to be able to deliver quality equal to that offered now by
conventional cable networks. "Cable end-to-end IPTV would require
the final -- large -- step of replacing currently installed cable
set-top boxes with IP STBs," he says. "The rest of the network is
moving to IP already."
Cable Next-Gen Video Plans and the Future of IP delivers a complete
analysis of the Next Generation Network Architecture (NGNA)
initiative from CableLabs, the cable industry's research consortium,
including how and when NGNA is likely to be deployed by leading MSOs.
The report provides essential details covering product and market
strategies of more than a dozen technology suppliers, including
Ciena, Cisco Systems (and its Scientific-Atlanta subsidiary),
Fujitsu, Motorola, and Nortel Networks.
Exclusive one-on-one interviews with key executives from leading
North American cable MSOs provide rich insight into this emerging
market sector. Cable MSOs interviewed for the report include
Comcast, Cox Communications, Rogers Cable, and Time Warner Cable.
Other key findings of the report include:
MSOs will leverage IP technology (and vendors) to expand their reach
beyond the TV and set-top box as they branch into new areas,
including delivery of content to mobile devices and to PCs. IP is
well entrenched in MSO aggregation and core networks, but non-TV
video service will likely be the first beachhead of IP in the access
network -- where preserving traffic in an IP form and building on
the enormous industry support for IP (meaning lower costs) makes
MSOs are facing a spectrum crunch as they look to next-generation
services to compete with both satellite and the telcos, but the
situation is not dire. Cable executives interviewed for this report
insist they have plenty of unused capacity in their networks. The
efforts and innovation of the next three to five years will center
on how best to tap that unused capacity.
Deployment of SDV, when it does happen, will not necessarily boost
sales of optical transport equipment. SDV is really about doing more
with the same - - i.e., boosting the number of video channels
available to subscribers without adding any new capacity to the
network. The migration will likely be similar to that for VOD, which
by its switched nature has allowed MSOs to ratchet up programming
choices without having to dedicate much additional bandwidth (if
any) to it.
Cable Next-Gen Video Plans and the Future of IP costs $3,795 and is
published in PDF format. The price includes an enterprise license
covering all of the employees at the purchaser's company.
About Heavy Reading
Heavy Reading is an independent market research organization
offering quantitative analysis of telecom technology to service
providers, vendors, and investors. Its mandate is to provide the
comprehensive competitive analysis needed today for the deployment
of profitable networks based on next- generation hardware and
About Light Reading
Reaching a core audience of more than 917,000 enterprise IT managers
and executives, Light Reading Inc. publishes http://www.lightreading.com,
the leading global content site for the telecom industry; http://www.byteandswitch.com,
a storage networking site; http://www.unstrung.com, dedicated to
wireless networking; http://www.darkreading.com, an IT security
site, and http://www.cabledigitalnews.com, covering the cable
industry's evolving communications infrastructure. Light Reading was
acquired by United Business Media in August 2005, and operates as a
unit of CMP Technology.
About CMP Technology
CMP Technology (http://www.cmp.com) is a marketing solutions company
serving the technology industry. Through its market-leading
portfolio of trusted information brands, CMP has earned the
confidence of more technology professionals than any other media
company. As a result, CMP is the premier provider of access, insight
and actionable programs designed to connect sellers and buyers in
ways that yield superior return on investment. CMP Technology is a
subsidiary of United Business Media (http://www.unitedbusinessmedia.com),
a global provider of news distribution and specialist information
services with a market capitalization of more than $3 billion.
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