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Cable Technology Feature Article

December 10, 2012

Cox Communications Puts More Channels in Cox TV Connect

By Steve Anderson, Contributing TMCnet Writer

Cox (News - Alert) Communications had some good news for those who like their television on a smaller screen, as they announced earlier today that their Cox TV Connect app had taken a big shot of juice thanks to the addition of a big new lineup of channels, as well as some modifications to functionality as well.

Thanks to the upgrade, Cox TV Connect includes an additional 56 national cable channels -- including names like Fox Business Network, movie channel Encore, and G4 -- and has gone beyond the iPad to include iPhone (News - Alert) and iPad Touch users as well. The app comes with a program guide, as well as closed captioning capabilities and the ability to schedule a DVR to record the contents of channels remotely, even when the user isn't at home. This provides that "second-screen" experience that many users are after these days.

Customers' desires to watch television on screens other than their big screens has actually grown in recent months, with the original Cox TV Connect app seeing fully 420,000 downloads since its launch. It's available for no extra charge for subscribers and can be found in the Apple (News - Alert) App Store.

Of course, there are downsides here. Naturally, as ever, this is just for users of Cox TV Essential or Cox Advanced TV as well as one of the Cox Internet tiers, be it Preferred, Premier or Ultimate. This means users will not only have to authenticate with Cox, but also likely won't be able to use it outside of their homes.

There's a certain disappointment to many of the cable providers online offerings so far. After all, what sense is there in offering on a mobile app the exact same channels that can be had on a much larger screen? The option to take the app on the road would have been profoundly welcome, but likely would have run afoul of licensing agreements. This particular mare's nest of licensing terms has done more than its share of damage to innovation over the years -- just ask Apple and Microsoft (News - Alert) -- and is in many respects holding the larger system back.

Hopefully, there can be some more accommodating licensing agreements to come out in the future, allowing the people who actually pay for cable to be able to use it where ever they happen to be, not just where the cable provider allows them to use it. Something of a long shot, admittedly, but the technology is already in play, so taking advantage of it should prove worthwhile.

Want to learn more about the latest in communications and technology? Then be sure to attend ITEXPO Miami 2013, Jan 29- Feb. 1 in Miami, Florida.  Stay in touch with everything happening at ITEXPO (News - Alert). Follow us on Twitter.

Edited by Rich Steeves

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