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What’s New With Cisco, CPE, & RDK, You Ask?

chowj

By Joe Chow, VP/GM, Cisco Connected Devices BU

Part of the tech-buzz at this week’s Cable Show, in Washington, will be about customer premises equipment – set-tops, cable modems, gateways.

Of the CPE buzz, half of it will be about “RDK,” and the other half about how to divvy up what functions live in the house (via the CPE), vs. in the cloud.

That’s our prediction, anyway.

Let’s start with RDK buzz. It stands for Reference Design Kit, and is an industry effort to a) build new cable-specific hardware faster, and b) get new services and apps to the market faster, on that hardware. It was spearheaded last year by Comcast, and is expected to widen to other service providers.

At the Cable Show, we’ll be showcasing Read More »

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A Cisco CCAP Update for Cable Show 2013: Helping Cable Operators Double Down… and Quadruple Up!

Three years ago, when I blogged about the Cable Converged Access Platform (CCAP), current events involved whether it would be called “CMAP,” “CESAR,” or something else entirely. (So much clearer in hindsight!)

Last year, when I blogged about CCAP at The Cable Show, current events centered on phasing, and how to prepare plant and infrastructure for the unified QAMs of CCAP — while the gear itself was being architected and built.

For what was Phase 1, Read More »

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Catching Up with Cisco’s John Chapman at Cable Congress 2013 This Week

jchapmanJohn Chapman, Engineering Fellow and CTO of Cisco System’s Cable Access Business Unit, is a pioneer in broadband communications, having helped to define and write the original DOCSIS (Data Over Cable Service Specification) spec — which spawned the cable modem marketplace, and, consequently, the broadband explosion we’re living in right now. He’s currently leading the development of the DOCSIS 3.1 specification, which promises substantial throughput and speed gains for residential broadband consumers. In this Q&A, originally posted on the Cable Congress blog “Interview with John Chapman”, he characterizes the highlights of DOCSIS 3.1, why it matters, and current events.

Q. What does DOCSIS 3.1 mean to cable-delivered broadband, as opposed to fiber?

Chapman: Service providers are often under scrutiny in terms of their competitiveness, against fiber-to-the-premise architectures. DOCSIS 3.1 will go a long way in assuaging those misperceptions. It can make that hybrid fiber-coax plant perform as well as fiber, at a fraction of the price of a fiber upgrade. DOCSIS 3.1 is all about getting more bang for the buck – it’s a higher performing, lower cost technology.

Q. What is the biggest change coming, in DOCSIS 3.1? Read More »

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And the (Two!) Technology & Engineering Emmys Go To….

seebecjBy Jeff Seebeck, VP/GM, Video Control Plane Business Unit,Cisco

…Cisco! As you can imagine, this super-charged our annual trek to Las Vegas for the International CES show, which serves as host for the fanciest-ever black tie event for tech people. (It even had a tech host – David Pogue, himself an  Emmy award winning tech columnist for the New York Times.  Cool.)

This year marked the 64th time the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences’ put on its annual Technology & Engineering Emmy Awards, and on the evening of January 10th, I was glad to be amongst my friends and colleagues to accept two, count’em two, Emmys. Read More »

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Streaming Is Going Mainstream: The Upward Arc of Online Video, Driven By Consumers

Only a short time ago, consumers had limited choices for accessing professional video content.

Today, a smorgasbord of options continues to multiply—from premium cable and DVDs, to online choices such as Apple, Netflix, and Hulu. Hardware options are equally dizzying, as traditional TV gives way to PCs, smartphones, and tablets. As portable devices meet the cloud, more consumers expect to view their favorite content anywhere, anytime.

The London Olympics this year were a case in point. NBC statistics reveal that more than 57 million U.S. viewers streamed Olympic events online. And over 7 million unique visitors per day accessed the BBC’s online Olympic sites, with nearly half of them watching on mobile devices.

Clearly, media consumption has evolved. Given the complexity of choices, it is essential for all players in the video value chain to understand what consumers need and want. To gain greater insight, the Cisco Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) studied the trends and behaviors of 1,152 video consumers in the United States in 2012.

Chief among our findings? Streaming is going mainstream—and if the quality, variety, and delivery of streaming video are held to a high standard, consumers will be willing to pay
for it.

Streaming Is Going Mainstream

Seventy percent of U.S. broadband users are watching professionally produced Internet video every week, with an average viewing time of more than 100 minutes per week. Among 18- to 24-year-olds, viewership rises to 94 percent. Overall, streaming video is ahead of downloading and about even with DVDs and Blu-ray Discs (see Figure 1). Read More »

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