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New US Telco ponders Mediaroom or Myrio


Published: 9 February, 2012


Great minds think alike and the moment we saw the announcement that IPTV pioneer SureWest would be acquired by Consolidated Communications, we asked the question whether or not this would lead to a change in the underlying IPTV middleware used by the combined group. No-sooner had we thought it than other publications posed the same question, though they never tried to answer it.

SureWest is a local US telco in parts of California, the Greater Sacramento Valley and the Kansas City region, looking after about 106,000 broadband homes and 130,000 telephone homes, out of a total of 322,000 homes in its area of coverage. Its revenues are close to $240 million and when it combines with Consolidated, which operates in Illinois, Pennsylvania and Texas, and this will create a company which around double the size.

It was back in 2005 when SureWest said that it would be the first US telco offering HD programming, on an IPTV service built around Irdeto for conditional access, which it later changed to Widevine, Minerva middleware, Kasenna VoD and Amino set tops. With the demise of Kasenna and eventual sale to Canada's Espial a few years back, SureWest then decided to bite the bullet and make a change, but wanted to make sure it never had to do it again, so chose Mediaroom from the biggest, most stable supplier in 2009.

It was the first time we can remember when an IPTV operator gave up its middleware platform and we thought at the time that this would be the beginning of an attack on the smaller US telcos by Microsoft, but that has never materialized.

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