Jim Robbins, pres/CEO, Cox: "NCTA will soon adopt Joe Rooney’s tagline as its own: ‘It’s the bundle, baby!’ — Comcast [CMCSA] will make Atlanta a new shining jewel of the cable industry by introducing legendary customer service, making all the Cox [COX] corporate employees proud to share their occupation at social gatherings. — Programmers will come to realize that their primary and number one source of distribution, cable, is so precious that they will begin to deflate their out- of-this-world price tags and come back to Earth. — We’ll see MTV Nets add ‘industrial folk’ music as a digital network-finally a home for artists like Suzanne Vega. — Ted Turner will say something the PR department at AOLTW [AOL] will wish he hadn’t. It’s just a hunch. — Customers will be able to get video, high-speed Internet, local and long-distance telephone from one provider on one monthly bill. Oh wait, that was in ’01 for some Cox customers! — When DirecTV closes its Internet business, its online customers will lose their ‘broadband’ service and will be looking for a Friend in the Digital Age. Call 404 843 5000. — CableFAX will realize that Facsimile is an ’80’s technology and will change its name to match the times. They will consider Cable Pony Express and decide against it. — And finally, I predict The Puppy Channel will make a roaring comeback with progressive reality-based programming serving a largely untapped niche audience." Michael Willner, vice chmn/CEO, Insight: "I expect the industry will have a ‘settling down’ period in ’03. Wall St will have the opportunity to see that many of us will indeed become free-cash-flow positive, as promised, by the end of the year. Further south, on the heels of the Consumer Electronics Industry agreement, Washington will recognize the industry’s leadership in finding regulatory and legislative solutions in the marketplace and will continue to look to us for continued guidance on other important issues." Ken Ferree, Media Bureau Chief, FCC: "Building on its success with ‘Plug and Play,’ NCTA announces an alliance with the National Association of Appliance Manufacturers that will allow consumers to hook-up toasters, refrigerators and even curling irons to their cable connections. An NCTA spokesman stated, "We are pleased to make toasters with pictures a reality for millions of Americans. There are still a few times of the day when consumers tell us they are not watching TV. This initiative aims to fill that gap." Comcast was the first company out of the gate when it announced a co-marketing agreement with Cuisinart." Nick Davatzes, pres/CEO, A&E TV Nets: "In ’03, the marketplace and viewer demand will propel cable TV toward further digitalization. VOD will play a major role in the future growth of cable. In the coming year, cable operators and networks will continue to experiment with the VOD platform as a vehicle for promoting core networks and to generate new revenue streams. The cable industry’s biggest challenge will be to create a pay television model that is sensible, secure and able to offer a variety of programming without jeopardizing advertising revenue." Tom Rutledge, pres, cable & comm, Cablevision "Consumers in the know will want all of the benefits of interactive digital cable. Digitally dated satellite customers will abandon their dishes to experience the wonders of real VOD-with hundreds of titles available at the touch of a button-specialized local content, reliable super-fast ‘Net connections and even voice services available from cable providers. Cable-less country cousins will be ostracized by friends, family members and passing acquaintances who will not be able to understand their inability to produce Tony Soprano on demand or access an entire programming slate devoted to birdwatching. Revenues will rise, hardware costs will fall, and the editors of "Webster’s" cable edition will decide that the word ‘churn’ is no longer relevant to the industry." Carole Black, pres/CEO Lifetime "This past year has been a very exciting one for cable, with cable viewership surpassing broadcast for the first time in television history. In ’03, I predict that cable will continue to surpass broadcast in viewership, and as a result, advertisers will recognize cable’s enormous value and reward the industry with more equitable CPMs." Glenn Britt, chmn/CEO, Time Warner Cable "Next year, I think much of the skepticism we’ve seen in ’02 about cable’s debt will begin to dissipate. Given the industry’s collective upgrade of its plant, it is not surprising overall debt levels are high. Unfortunately, too many investors looked at those debt levels, plugged in experience gained from other business sectors, like telephone, and drew the incorrect inference that cable was building excess capacity that would not generate reasonable return in the near-term. The reality is much different. Cable has an impressive array of new products and those are being aggressively deployed. There is no excess capacity, only a superior platform for delivering the kinds of interactive entertainment choices that our customers have repeatedly asked us to bring them. The returns are there."