Cable-Tec Expo: It's not Internet TV, it's broadband-enabled TV

All this talk about Internet television is confusing the market, according to Michael Hyashi, executive VP-architecture, development and engineering at Time Warner Cable.

It's not Internet television at all, Hyashi said during the Technology Leadership Roundtable during the opening day of SCTE Cable Tec Expo in New Orleans. "It's broadband-enabled TV."

Using that logic, the industry leaders on the panel explained how cable is planning to play in a new arena where the cable device is not necessarily the center of the home entertainment system but a part of the whole.

Hayashi also disputed the conventional wisdom that TVs, no matter how connected, are "dumb displays" that will become obsolete before their functionality is over.

"I wouldn't call it dumb displays," he said. "I actually expect TVs to be very smart."

It's just that cable devices have to be smarter. "We have to become one of the participants in this home entertainment environment," he added.

The trick there is working with other devices--but not working with every device.

"Writing a client for every single device out there would be futile," said Jay Rolls, senior VP-technology for Cox Communications.

The trick is to balance what cable has coming in through its pipes to what consumers are demanding from their end points, including CE devices like TVs that can be interfaced with set-top boxes and cable modems.

"We're at a point in transition," concluded John Chapman, fellow and CTO with Cisco's Access and Transport Technology Group.

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