FCC seeks STB competition

The US Federal Communications Commission is considering ways to enable access to the Internet via TV set-top boxes. FCC officials have revealed that a lack of competition and innovation in the market means they are considering how to increase online access as part of the agency's national broadband plan.

With limited access to the Internet by all consumers seeking more online content on their television sets, FCC officials are seeking ways to increase the adoption of broadband access to all Americans through mobile and television.

William Lake, FCC's media bureau chief, told an open meeting that current rules on cable set-top boxes have failed spur innovation and competition. One of the options the FCC is considering is to require cable and broadband providers such as Comcast, AT&T and Verizon to supply a small, low-cost, network-interface device that would act as a bridge for an Internet modem and cable boxes.