Cable TV

Close Charter launches TV streaming app

MUMBAI: Charter Communications launched its first mobile TV streaming app on Tuesday, offering a lineup of more than 100 live TV channels in the home, though the plan is to eventually allow authenticated customers to access live TV streams while they are on the go as well, Charter CEO Tom Rutledge said during Charter’s third quarter earnings call.

Rutledge said the MSO anticipates that the new Charter TV app, offered first on Apple devices and coming later to the Android platform, will eventually add video-on-demand content to the mix and offer out-of-home access.

Rutledge said: “Charter’s TV app is the beginning of a lot of things. It may ultimately be monetisable in ways that are different than we currently envision it.”

 “We may sell download-to-go services. We may sell video-on-demand everywhere. We may sell subscriptions everywhere,” he said. “But right now our primary business and our primary objective is to enhance our service offering and to make the total value of what we sell more valuable to the consumer.”

Rutledge, who was a champion of Wi-Fi at Cablevision Systems, said Charter is drawing up a Wi-Fi plan of its own.

“We think that Wi-Fi makes sense,” Rutledge said, noting that the MSO intends to start off by using dual SSIDs in Wi-Fi gear installed at commercial customer locations.

“We want to start putting it out in our commercial customer base next year…While we don’t have a complete rollout plan yet, we’re working on beginning to deploy Wi-Fi at Charter,” Rutledge said.

He did not mention if Charter has any plans to join the “Cable WiFi” roaming initiative that counts five members - Comcast, Bright House Networks, Time Warner Cable, Cablevision and Cox Communications - that have collectively deployed more than 200,000 Wi-Fi hot spots, with more than 500,000 on the horizon.

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