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Cable Technology Feature Article

June 21, 2014

Cable Technology Week in Review

By Tara Seals, TMCnet Contributor

TV consolidation is continuing, with Telefonica offering 725 million Euros ($1 billion) for a controlling stake in the Spanish subscription TV assets owned by Distribuidora de Television Digital (DTS). Telefonica already owns 22 percent of DTS, which in turn is the largest multichannel video services supplier in Spain, using the Canal+ brand. But the additional bid would give Telefonica complete control. The deal may seem analogous to the AT&T-DirecTV (News - Alert) proposed deal, but our analysis argues that Telefonica has a different approach to fixed network infrastructure, even though Telefonica and AT&T face a similar issue: key competitors are investing in high capacity consumer access lines.

For more in-depth discussion of the deal, check out our full analysis.

Also on the M&A front, Level 3 Communications (News - Alert) has announced that it will be purchasing tw telecom, the third-largest business Ethernet provider in the United States. This move is particularly unusual due to the fact that Level 3 is planning on buying up tw telecom (News - Alert)'s $1.6 billion debt, bringing the acquisition to a grand total of around $7.3 billion. Also, while Level 3 is a global telecommunications provider, tw telecom only caters to customers within the United States and carries Internet data for its clients. Level 3's reputation is based on their ability to transmit data efficiently over long distances. tw telecom's array of fiber-optic connections throughout the country in major metropolitan areas will help facilitate the company's ability to deliver information at high speeds.

You can read full details of the deal, here.

Meanwhile, RCN is getting convergent, making the Caller ID service available to customers on TiVo (News - Alert) service, at no extra charge. New and existing customers can get details about the name and number of the caller on their TV screen during an incoming call. The on-screen display feature is also available for multiple phone lines per subscriber and is showed when customers are watching either live TV or a pre-recorded program. “From RCN’s (News - Alert) recent launch of the Netflix app on our TiVo service, to our recent introduction of the powerful TiVo T6 DVR, to now Caller ID on TiVo, we continue to prove that this partnership represents a total commitment to technology innovation and to making our customers’ experience as enjoyable and easy to use as possible,” the company said.

For full details, click here.

And finally, the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore plans to announce in November 2014 rules pertaining to the use of TV White Spaces spectrum. Machine-to-machine communications, smart metering, outdoor environment and security monitoring services are among the services the Singapore regulator expects will be used over the TV White Spaces network.

The regulations will make available 180 MHz of spectrum for communications applications. By way of comparison, that is about double the amount of spectrum allocated for 2.4-GHz Wi-Fi. The new rules obviously will have to create technical standards for TVWS equipment, create channel plans and specify how equipment communicates with the geo-location databases used to allocate access.

Note that traditional consumer Internet access is not on that list of suggested or anticipated applications. Singapore already has well-developed fixed access, mobile Internet access and Wi-Fi

There’s a lot more to this from a competitive standpoint, all detailed here.

To check out more details on all of this and more, visit our homepage. And have a great weekend!

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