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The National Broadband Plan

The FCC released its national broadband plan today, and the Web is buzzing with commentary and analysis. Motorola hasn’t put out any public comment on the plan yet, but I thought it would be worthwhile to publish a couple of excerpts from an earlier Motorola filing during the FCC information-gathering period. See below for two of Motorola’s recommendations made in a filing last December.

THE COMMISSION SHOULD LAUNCH A NOTICE OF INQUIRY TO EXAMINE NAVIGATION DEVICE ISSUES.

…The Public Notice states that the “Commission’s CableCARD rules have resulted in limited success in developing a retail market for navigation devices.” We agree and support recent calls for an NOI to examine fresh approaches to addressing the future of navigation devices in the MVPD marketplace. Cable operators and their customers have incurred substantial costs as a result of CableCARD requirements. Beyond the costs associated with developing the CableCARD solution and redesigning headends and equipment to support CableCARDs, cable operators have now deployed over 17.7 million CableCARD-equipped set-top boxes from a wide and growing number of suppliers, including Motorola, Pace, Samsung, Panasonic, Cisco, Evolution Broadband, and TiVo. In contrast, on the retail side of the ledger, only 456,000 CableCARDs have been deployed in retail navigation devices. This disparity makes crystal clear that the costs of the current regulatory regime — which may now be approaching $1 billion — far outweigh any public interest benefits…

COMMISSION POLICIES SHOULD ACCOMMODATE THE DEPLOYMENT OF IP VIDEO BY MVPDs.

…IP enables operators and suppliers to reduce costs through the elimination of unnecessary functionalities (such as redundant set-top box tuners) and accelerate the development and deployment of interactive applications (such as widgets and other interactive features). Motorola strongly supports the deployment of IP networks. We provide IP and hybrid QAM/IP set-top boxes to MVPDs, as well as the network equipment that supports IP video distribution. Motorola also is developing cutting-edge products that will deliver the next generation of IP video service. For example, Motorola is working on solutions with its IPTV and other set-top boxes that will enable the delivery of 3-D television service.

3 Responses

  1. The small number of cable cards deployed in retail navigation devices shouldn’t surprise anyone. Until the large STB manufacturers offer their products for retail sale, the only contribution you have to this number is from Tivo, a few PC card manufacturers and TVs from a few years past. The MSOs and Manufacturers wanted CableCard to fail, so it did.

    I’d love to purchase my own Motorola DVR and use it on Comcast. Why should we be able to purchase and use our own Motorola cable modems, but not STBs? I hope the FCC is successful in causing a competitive retail environment for STB sales the second time around.

  2. [...] Commission held an open meeting today to discuss many of the proposals the agency put forth in the recently released National Broadband Plan. Although the video stream of the proceedings was choppy, I did manage to catch bits and pieces of [...]

  3. [...] category of posts on this site – from a review of the original Seven-Oh-Seven mandate to more recent Motorola thoughts on how the FCC should handle CableCARD going [...]

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