It looks like the FCC is once again trying to push along some resolution on 2-way plug and play. Late Wed, the Commission adopted on circulation a NPRM that seeks comments on the progress of making 2-way devices available to consumers at retail that will work in their cable systems. As of deadline, the FCC had not released the text of the item. The FCC is expected to seek comment on the NCTA’s OpenCable proposal as well as CEA’s proposal, which would permit CE makers to offer equivalent 2-way products that build on existing digital cable technologies but not require them to support OCAP. "This rulemaking proceeding promises to bring competition to the market by giving consumers the widest choices in both equipment and services," CEA pres/CEO Gary Shapiro said of the NPRM. "A competitive cable equipment market is still elusive 11 years after Congress required it, and we applaud the FCC for taking steps to ensure that innovation will no longer be stifled." Big Wait: Meanwhile, more than 50 waivers remain pending at the FCC over the Jul 1 set-top integration ban. As of Sun, video providers can no longer deploy new integrated set-top boxes. There’s no indication what the FCC will do about the waivers, and the chmn is occupied with a family emergency. Speculation runs the gamut—from a rash of waiver approvals or denials at the last minute to the FCC waiting to enforce the rules until it has acted on the waivers. Large operators Cfax spoke to, including Cox and Comcast, said they would be in complete compliance. Verizon’s petition is drawing a lot of interest since it has been deploying boxes that are not CableCARD ready for its FiOS video service. "We’re hopeful the FCC will grant the waiver given that our technology is new and different and providing an alternative to cable TV," a Verizon spokesman said, calling FiOS a "prime example" of why the waiver was created. Check out C-SPAN’s "The Communicators" Sat, 6:30pm to see NCTA’s Dan Brenner’s take on the ban.

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