Cable360AM — News briefing for Tuesday, Sept. 11 »
Comcast launched HiDefHigh.com, a website touting its high definition TV service, HDTV channels and VOD and Comcast.net’s TV Planner personalized program guide. The site is hosted by a talking parrot (a colorful though iffy mascot if Comcast doesn’t want to make its HD offering a me-too product with satellite TV…) and follows Time Warner Cable‘s HD website launch with Cisco.
Insight Communications was pulled off the block by owner the Carlyle Group, which was disappointed with potential buyers’ bids (including one from Time Warner) in the "less than $3 billion range" that came in about $200 million short of Carlyle’s asking price, reports the Wall Street Journal. Carlyle will resume Insight’s sale process when markets improve.
AT&T is ramping up its wireless marketing efforts, including adopting Cingular’s orange color to unify its mobile marketing (while keeping the classic AT&T blue sphere as its corporate logo) and a Digital World website where customers can check out its wireless products (including Apple‘s iPhone) and services. New CEO Randall Stephenson tells USA Today the company is focusing on wireless over traditional phone service because, "We’re freeing our customers from having to buy an access line" or regular landline. That’s "an old mind-set," he adds. "We need to get over it."
AT&T’s U-verse is ramping up its interactive TV content by incorporating Yellow Pages’ listings, Yahoo applications and traffic and weather widgets (dubbed the U-bar) in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The U-verse Users Forum has screenshots.
Total U.S. ad spending slipped 0.3% in the first half of 2007, although cable TV ad spending increased 2.8% to $3.8 billion, according to TNS Media Intelligence.
Verizon had to disconnect "about 30 homes" it installed with FiOS TV and Internet service in Long Island, NY, after realizing it didn’t have franchise approvals in place. [NY Newsday]
Digeo is preparing a pre-holiday retail launch of its Moxi digital set-top boxes, all of which feature CableCARD slots. [Twice]
Nielsen named Bruce Dennler president of Nielsen Entertainment.
USA Today looks at cable networks changing their brands in a bid to break out of the pack, including 1st quarter name-changers Court TV (to truTV) and Discovery Home (to Planet Green).
Cablevision added TV5Monde USA to its iO TV switched digital offering of 60 international channels. The French programming service is available for $9.95/mo. across Cablevision’s footprint.
CaribeVisión launches today to more than 7.7 million households in the U.S. and Puerto Rico with carriage on Time Warner Cable in New York and New Jersey, on Comcast in the Miami-Dade area and in Jersey City, and on Atlantic Broadband.
Gospel Music Channel today presents A Day of Hope & Inspiration, 24-hours of commercial-free programming to commemorate the sixth anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. Featured performers include Rascal Flatts and Martina McBride.
Microsoft is wooing the BBC to its Xbox and other video platforms, reports the Times of London.
MTV Networks staffers in New York will attend a seminar today on Hispanic Heritage Month hosted by comedian Jade Esteban Estrada.
TBS renewed original comedy My Boys (which just just wrapped the second half of its first season last night) and is looking for four original half-hours in primetime and four in latenight, reports Variety.
TLC is moving to Los Angeles, reports TV Week. New president Angela Shapiro-Mathes will maintain some business-related positions at Discovery HD in Silver Spring, MD, and ad sales will remain in New York, while the bulk of the network will relocate to LA.
Former Tennis Channel SVP of distribution, Randy Brown, has joined Outdoor Channel, where his new title is SVP of affiliate sales and marketing. Brown, #79 on the 2006 CableFax 100, also co-founded the Ass’n of Independent Programming Networks and previously ran ESPN‘s Central Division affiliate sales and marketing.
Voom‘s Gallery HD network, carried on Dish Network and Cablevision, tonight features the TV-shy Lou Reed hosting an episode of its Aperture photography series. [Harp]
YouTube accounts for 28% of total minutes spent on Google worldwide, or 35% of global Googlers, according to JMP Securities’ analysis of Comscore data. [Silicon Alley Insider]
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