cable industry

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Comcast Gets Rid of 3.9M Customers to Ease Merger

It sells 1.4M, spins off 2.5M more

(Newser) - Comcast today announced a pair of moves that will rid it of a combined 3.9 million subscribers, in an attempt to make its Time Warner merger sit more easily with regulators. Comcast will sell 1.4 million subscribers to rival (and previous Time Warner suitor) Charter Communications for $7.... More »

Can Cable Competition Possibly Get Worse? Yes

Proposed merger takes it from 'zero to two times zero,' writes Matthew Yglesias

(Newser) - Comcast and Time Warner Cable say their proposed merger into one massive cable company will help consumers. The deal "does not reduce competition in any market or in any way," insists Comcast CEO Brian Roberts. Well so what, is a common refrain among analysts—competition is already so... More »

Time Warner Bribes Partners to Keep Shows Offline

Cable provider even threatens to drop programming in retaliation

(Newser) - Cable companies must be terrified of cord-cutters, because they're playing hardball to try to keep shows offline. Time Warner and other "pay-TV operators" are offering media companies higher payments if they'll keep their content off of web video services, and even threatening to drop networks that don'... More »

Face It, Cable: You're on the Way Out

Michael Wolff: Execs haven't wised up to industry's demise

(Newser) - Cable TV is "on the fast train to oblivion," but you won't hear that from its executives. The latest financial results from Time Warner and News Corp are upbeat, and Comcast has decided to snap up the rest of NBCUniversal ahead of schedule. But the disastrous future... More »

Intel Plans to Launch Internet TV Service

But skeptics aren't sure company can pull it off

(Newser) - Chip-maker Intel plans to venture into the world of Internet TV sometime this year. As Time explains, the company wants to offer "curated" packages of TV channels that would be streamed over the Internet. The packages would be smaller than the typical ones offered by cable and satellite companies,... More »

Google Fiber Should Have Cable Companies Terrified

Henry Blodget: It's blazing Internet, for $70 a month

(Newser) - A few lucky neighborhoods in Kansas City already have access to Google Fiber, and the cable industry better take notice, writes Henry Blodget at Business Insider . Subscribers get lightning-fast Internet for $70 a month, and, if they want, cable and a DVR for another $50. (Internet speeds are indeed incredibly... More »

Feds Suspect Cable Firms of Stifling Online Videos

DoJ conducting antitrust probe, sources say

(Newser) - Federal authorities suspect cable companies worried about competition from online video have acted improperly to quash their emerging rivals, sources tell the Wall Street Journal . The Department of Justice has opened a wide-ranging investigation, and officials have spoken to online video providers and cable companies, including Time Warner and Comcast,... More »

Get Ready for $200 Cable Bills

Industry to hit that mark by 2020, and that doesn't count Internet, phone service

(Newser) - Unless something changes, cable TV prices are headed for the stratosphere, according to an industry forecast released yesterday. At the rate cable prices have been increasing—about 6% per year—analysts see them hitting $200 a month by 2020, which, the New York Post quips, might be enough to displace... More »

Fox Puts Streaming Behind Paywall

Soon only Dish, Hulu Plus subscribers will have immediate access to shows

(Newser) - If you "cut the cord" and canceled cable when Hulu came along, you may have to wait more than a week after new Fox TV shows air to watch them. Starting Aug. 15, Fox will only allow Dish Network or Hulu Plus subscribers to watch its shows online immediately... More »

Latest Cable Battle: Beaming Straight to iPad

Time Warner draws networks' ire with live-TV app

(Newser) - A feud has erupted between Time Warner and cable networks after the cable provider released an iPad app for 32 live TV channels. Time Warner, which didn’t get permission from the networks, says it is “well within our rights” to transmit to any home device, provided it does... More »

FCC Honcho: Comcast Can Only Buy NBC if It Shares

Commission aims to block media stranglehold

(Newser) - Comcast should only be able to go through with its plans to buy NBC Universal if it's willing to share the media giant’s content with its competitors, according to Julius Genachowski. The FCC chairman gave his conditional approval for the merger last week, proposing a set of rules that... More »

Subscribers Will Pay for Fox/Time Warner Deal

Channels up and down the dial are asking for more money

(Newser) - It’s no coincidence that on the day Time Warner and News Corp. resolved their long, ugly contract negotiations, the cable provider also announced a rate increase. Get used to it, says the New York Times, because soon all the broadcast networks will be lobbying for more dough, as will... More »

Please, Apple, 'Blow Up' the Cable Companies

Steve Jobs and crew are getting closer to an online subscription service

(Newser) - Apple is getting closer to launching an online television subscription service, and MG Siegler relishes the challenge it could pose to cable companies. “Just as Apple transformed the music industry thanks to the iTunes/iPod combination, and the mobile industry thanks to the iPhone, a device that offered all the... More »

Lou Dobbs Leaves CNN

Longtime anchor announces move on tonight's show

(Newser) - Anchor Lou Dobbs is leaving CNN, he announced during tonight’s show—his last after 27 years at the channel. Dobbs, whose contract wasn’t up until 2011, has made waves with his anti-immigration views and his questioning of President Obama’s citizenship; he didn’t shed much light on... More »

TV Stations Complete Shift to Digital

Millions of American viewers could lose signal today

(Newser) - As the US completes the shift to digital TV today, viewers in more than 2 million households will see nothing but static, according to Nielsen and broadcasters’ estimates. Those without signals are likely to be from poorer, rural, and older demographics, the Wall Street Journal reports—though Nielsen research finds... More »

Economy May Be Death Knell for Landlines ... Even Cable

If consumers are forced to pare down, high-speed internet connection has trump

(Newser) - An economy that’s stuck in “slow” could soon have consumers making choices about whether to keep their cable TV or Internet connections, and weighing whether they need a telephone landline, reports Advertising Age. A high-speed connection that can provide access to the Internet, phone service and even entertainment... More »

Big Brother Is Watching... and Talking Back

Comcast redefines customer service by reaching out to bloggers

(Newser) - Some bloggers who have vented online about their Comcast cable service have gotten a surprising—and, for some, a creepy—response: a reply from a customer service agent. Like a growing number of companies, Comcast monitors social network sites, public blogs, and message boards for complaints, but now it's taking... More »

Sony Deal Ends Cable Box Era

Strikes deal for accessory-free TV

(Newser) - The days of set-top cable boxes are surely numbered, thanks to Sony, the first consumer electronics company to close a deal to produce TVs that need no accessories to receive digital cable signals. The memorandum of understanding, signed by all the major cable companies, doesn’t just apply to Sony;... More »

TV Newbie Verizon to FCC: Help Cable Users Switch

Move highlights telecom turf war

(Newser) - As Verizon rolls out its subscription-TV service, the company has asked the FCC to make the switch from cable easier for consumers, the Washington Post reports. In its petition, Verizon asked for the authority to shut off its customers’ cable services on their behalf, arguing that the switchover process is... More »

Time Warner Plans AOL Spin-Off

New CEO also considers selling Time Warner Cable

(Newser) - In an effort to revive the company's slumping stock, Time Warner's new CEO plans to break up AOL, keeping its growing online ad properties, but unloading its increasingly obsolete dial-up Internet service provider. Operating income at AOL fell 70% in the fourth quarter, as the company continued to lose Internet-access... More »

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