Cable Operators Use Apps to Expand Video Reach

Cable's move to embrace connected devices and place apps on smart TVs, tablets and other devices creates new opportunities, says Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider

Mar 08, 2011, 14:14 ET from Heavy Reading

NEW YORK, March 8, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Cable is making the move toward IP video platforms and forming new relationships with consumer electronics companies, creating new opportunities for cable operators, according to the latest report from Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider (, a subscription research service from Heavy Reading (

Click Me! Cable Becomes an App on Consumer Electronics examines the role of connected devices in cable's emerging migration toward IP video. It includes profiles of six Consumer Electronics Show (CES) exhibitors that presented ways for MSOs to bring cable apps to market on connected devices.

For a list of companies covered in this report,

"At the recent CES 2011 event, some early evidence surfaced of cable's interest in IP video platforms and a new relationship with CE companies," notes Craig Leddy, research analyst with Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider and author of the report. "In addition to providing broadband connections behind the screen, cable is becoming an app on the front of the screen."

Cable's move to embrace connected devices and place apps on smart TVs, tablets and other devices marks a small but important step, Leddy says. "The cable apps displayed at CES 2011 are just a drop in the bucket, but they are part of an overall migration of cable to embrace IP video and capitalize on it," he continues. "There are myriad reasons for cable's move – so many that the movement to IP video will come to dominate cable technology activity throughout this decade, similar to how digital development dominated the previous 15 years."

Key findings of Click Me! Cable Becomes an App on Consumer Electronics include the following:

  • Cable MSOs are using broadband-connected retail devices and on-screen apps to extend cable services.
  • The first Comcast and Time Warner Cable TV Everywhere apps appeared on Samsung smart TVs during the 2011 CES.
  • Comcast is extending its Xfinity services to iPads and Android platforms, including plans to stream live TV.
  • The growth of cable apps signifies the cable industry's new interest in exploiting OTT platforms and migrating to IP video delivery.
  • Content rights issues are a major hurdle that MSOs and programmers must resolve through business deals and DRM scenarios.
  • For cable apps to succeed, more MSOs, CE companies and content providers need to come together to provide the scale needed to make this a worthwhile business.

Click Me! Cable Becomes an App on Consumer Electronics is available as part of an annual subscription (six issues) to Heavy Reading Cable Industry Insider, priced at $1,595. Individual reports are available for $900.

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About Heavy Reading (

Heavy Reading is an independent market research organization offering quantitative analysis of telecom technology to carriers, service providers, and vendors. Our remit is to provide the comprehensive competitive analysis needed today for the deployment of profitable networks based on next-generation hardware and software. This information is compiled via exhaustive surveys of both vendors' products and service-provider decision makers.

About Light Reading Communications Network (

Founded in 2000, the Light Reading Communications Network is the world's leading research-led integrated media company serving the global communications market. is the ultimate source for technological and financial analysis of the communications industry, leading the media sector in terms of traffic, content, and reputation. Light Reading's research arms, Heavy Reading and Pyramid Research, provide the most comprehensive communications research, market data, and technology analysis in close to 100 markets around the world. Light Reading produces nearly 20 targeted communications events including TelcoTV, and TelcoTV Asia, Ethernet Expo New York and Ethernet Europe, and The Tower Summit @ CTIA, as well as focused one-day events tailored for cable, mobile, and wireline executives in the US, Europe, India, and China. Light Reading was acquired by United Business Media in August 2005 and operates as a unit of TechWeb.

SOURCE Heavy Reading