West Alabama Cable deploys hybrid TV for combined cable, OTT service

Michelle Clancy | 20-07-2012

West Alabama TV Cable is rolling out hybrid TV, which combines traditional cable TV and over-the-top (OTT) services in one, operator-branded user experience.

Entone, Confluent Technology Group and Minerva Networks are partnering to deliver the enhanced HDTV service.
Enabled primarily by Entone's hybrid TV devices and the WebVOD application, subscribers in Fayette, Ala. now have access to whole-home DVR, an HD channel line-up, a library of cloud-based video-on-demand (VOD) content from VUDU, Internet radio from Pandora, social media via Facebook and Twitter, and popular media services such as Flickr, Picasa and YouTube.
The WebVOD application can be integrated with existing cable headend -- enabling cable operators to quickly deploy a complete HDTV service that includes a full-featured, whole-home digital video recorder (DVR), enhanced electronic program guide (EPG) and rich cloud-based media services.
"We have moved into a realm of service expansion and feature-rich flexibility that previously was only available to the largest cable companies," said Kyle South, GM at West Alabama TV Cable. "Thanks to the collaborative efforts from Confluent, Entone and Minerva, we are able to leverage our existing broadband infrastructure to enhance the appeal of our service portfolio with a richer and more compelling TV service, while also deepening our relationship with our customers."
More than 38% of all U.S. households now have access to online video via connected TVs, game consoles and specialised set-tops, according to the Leichtman Research Group. As a result, the percent of U.S. adults watching online video on the TV at least once a week has shot up from 5% in 2010 to 13% in 2012, Leichtman reports.
"We are working closely with a number of our cable customers who want to move beyond the limitations of legacy set-top systems to introduce advanced services without incurring the infrastructure costs normally associated with these capabilities," said Mark Anderson, founder and CEO of Confluent. "Our integrated hybrid TV solution is truly ideal for operators looking to maximize the capabilities of their existing RF cable system and broadband networks providing digital video and advanced services without the upfront capital expenditures associated with plant upgrades."