After about a month at retail, the country’s largest MSO only has completed 6 cable card installations, and a seventh had so many hiccups, it never was able to be installed properly, Comcast CTO/evp David Fellows told a Summit panel Mon. Similarly, Cox only has completed "a handful" of installations, vp multimedia technology John Hildebrand added. "We’re there, and we’re ready. We don’t know how successful it’s going to be yet," Hildebrand said. "We’re trying to figure out how many cable cards we need to have on hand." Comcast technicians are spending more time debunking "growing urban legends" surrounding the 1-way, cable-ready TVs than actually installing the cards, Fellows said. "There’s no guide; no interactive services; no free HBO SVOD," he said. He spoke of a subscriber who returned his TV when he realized he still would have to pay for cable. — All or Nothing: Fellows urged marketers to devise another term for all digital. "All digital is not ‘no analog,’" he said. Fellows also spoke about the need for digital set-tops to become smaller, arguing for a correlation between small set-tops and digital uptake. "Two-thirds of Comcast customers have resisted our attempts to get them to subscribe to digital," he said, adding subs marketed with set-tops as small as a cigarette pack have showed "little resistance." Two-Way Dealin’: A range of issues is delaying a 2-way plug & play deal, Philips’ Brian Smith said, but declined to elaborate. Hopefully, the industry will see a deal reached within a year or 2, Smith said.

The Daily


Section 706: ISPs Once Again Battle Over Benchmarks

The FCC is once again looking to fulfill its Section 706 obligation through its annual Notice of Inquiry into the state of broadband deployment.

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