A Forum tech panel agrees consumers remain confused about HD. To assist, CEA soon will have agreements with manufacturers to provide HD education material at points of sale in retail outlets, CEA vp Jeff Joseph says. He urges cable to use standard feeds to promote and explain HD. "ESPN does a great job of this," he says. — Speaking of education and acceptance, the panel says VOD "is in the 1st or 2nd inning;" HD is in the 4th or 5th inning. As for VoIP, Cox svp Dallas Clement asks the audience: ‘how many of you have phones in your homes?’ All hands are raised. "I think VoIP will catch on," he says to great laughter. "Consumers don’t need to know about VoIP; it’s just phone service," he says. Later, he acknowledges myriad policy and regulatory issues, but notes the need for consumer education on VoIP is much less than for HD. — The panel also sees DVR and VOD coexisting easily. VOD and DVRs are different services, he says. For example, Clement favors specialized SVOD genres, for sports and children. He also sees VOD providing revenue to ops through commercials. If viewers choose to watch a VOD commercial about a zoo and then visit the zoo using a discount coupon, a percentage of revenue could be returned to the cable operator, he says. "That can’t be done easily with DVR," Clement adds. — While he understands the need for various measures to assist parental control over TV, CEA’s Jeff Joseph feels consumers already possess the most potent control: "the on-off switch," he says.

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