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Cablecos ponder networked DVRs in wake of Cablevision ruling
From: David Farber <dave () farber net>
Date: Fri, 8 Aug 2008 16:08:20 -0400



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From: dewayne () warpspeed com (Dewayne Hendricks)
Date: August 8, 2008 9:23:14 AM EDT
To: Dewayne-Net Technology List <xyzzy () warpspeed com>
Subject: [Dewayne-Net] Cablecos ponder networked DVRs in wake of Cablevision ruling

Cablecos ponder networked DVRs in wake of Cablevision ruling
By Nate Anderson | Published: August 07, 2008 - 08:35PM CT

<http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20080807-cablecos-ponder-networked-dvrs-in-wake-of-cablevision-ruling.html >

Corporate earnings calls may sound like they're about as much fun as a hearse, but the occasional interesting nugget does emerge. For instance, Time Warner cable has just acknowledged that it would love to roll out a legal-for-now network DVR, assuming that the recent Cablevision appeal stands.

After being tangled for several years in the court system, the Cablevision lawsuit was settled by an appeals court this week, and the court ruled in favor of the "network DVR." The gear for this system would actually remain in the cable company's back office, cutting down substantially on upfront hardware investment and support costs; customers would access it though their remote controls. Each household would still need to choose which shows to record, though. Cable companies would be on far shakier legal ground if they simply began archiving their entire feed and offering it back to customers for anytime viewing. According Multichannel News, which listened in on the Time Warner call, CEO Glenn Britt talked up the network DVR tech and said his company would love to roll it out.

"We’ve said for a long time that a centralized network DVR is a better engineering solution than having hard drives all over everybody’s home," he said. "If this particular court case is upheld, we will deploy that."

Ars asked Comcast, another of the country's leading cable operators in terms of subscriber size, if it planned to follow suit. The company said that discussions about a rollout had taken place in the past, but it was too early to say for sure what the cable giant might do.

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