Time Warner Cable announced that its Raleigh, N.C. division was the MSO’s first system to digitally simulcast its analog channel lineup throughout the full service area. Time Warner upgraded about 70 channels in the Raleigh division, which included improvements to the video and sound quality for digital cable customers. The MSO expects to complete is digital simulcast rollout in half of its 31 divisions by year’s end, followed by a complete rollout in 2006. In other simulcasting news, Armstrong Cable has deployed Terayon’s DM 6400 Network CherryPicker platform in its Zelienople, Penn., master headend to rate and statistically re-multiplex national digital programming and locally encoded MPEG-2 streams. Other CherryPickers are enabling Armstrong partner Comcast Spotlight to insert local ads on digital networks. Meanwhile, Adelphia is working with Bigband Networks in its Los Angeles system on digital encoding, digital ad insertion and GigE transport technology to enable a digital simulcast offering. Comcast, Motorola, others demo CA at FCC In what sounded rather like a CableLabs summer (or winter) conference, reps from various operators and technology vendors gathered at the Federal Communications Commission last Friday, July 15, in Washington, D.C. for a private technology discussion and demonstration. The topic for the day was downloadable conditional access (CA). The FCC asked the cable industry to outline the feasibility of this technology as part of its decision in March to delay the ban on integrated set-top security to July 2007. Participants included the Combined Conditional Access Development (the joint venture formed in March between Comcast and Motorola); Scientific-Atlanta, and Nagravision. Communications Technology sister pub CableFAX Daily reported this news based on an Ex Parte Notice filed by Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP. Cox lines up ITV for NoVA In another scoop from CableFAX, and in what appears to be a rollout of Cox’s OnRamp technology (see stories above), the MSO’s northern Virginia system is preparing to launch a bundle of interactive services that include subscriber account management, email and on-screen games. As it happens, Verizon’s now has a franchise for its FiOS service in Herndon, Va. Verizon Deals with Turner Verizon announced it has signed a programming and distribution agreement with Turner Broadcasting Systems. The deal allows Verizon’s FiOS TV, which is scheduled to launch later this year, to carry Turner content such as TBS, TNT, CNN, Headline News, and Cartoon Network, among others. Verizon said FiOS TV will deliver hundreds of other digital video channels, high-definition programming, VOD content, music channels and an interactive programming guide through its fiber-to-the-premises broadband network. Verizon is building FTTP in half of the states that it currently offers landline communication services. Weather Channel Launches Overlay App The Weather Channel and Alticast joined forces to launch a weather application for ITV that features forecast options such as a five-day planner and a weekend planner, allergy information, ultraviolet index, weather information for other cities and an almanac. Designed to run as an interactive overlay on a live broadcast, the application is designed for the OpenCable Applications Platform and is based on the Multimedia Home Platform. Alticast provides the middleware. VOD Watch Corus Entertainment and Comcast Corporation are working out the final details before launching Vortex on Demand later this month. The new VOD service provides programming for kids between the ages of 6 and 12, and will be available at no additional charge for Comcast digital subscribers. The kiddie content is also available mid-month via Comcast’s On Demand Kids & Teens menu. Nelvana, a Corus subsidiary, will distribute the content, which includes over 393 half-hours of animation.

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