FCC may step into set-top spat

Federal regulators are considering how to settle a stand-off between TV makers and cable companies. The dispute involves a two-way plug-and-play technology standard. The cable and consumer electronics industries each prefer their own and aren't budging.

Currently, interactive services like program guides, video-on-demand and pay-per-view are only available in set-top boxes. Consumer electronics manufacturers want to integrate those functions into TV sets. Their lobby, the Consumer Electronics Association, has proposed DCR+ as the platform for two-way plug-and-play. The cable industry wants the OpenCable Platform.

The stand-off puts the FCC in the position of picking between Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Charter, et al, on one side, and Sony, LG, Panasonic and other consumer electronics giants on the other. The FCC runs on around $300 million a year. Comcast makes 83 times that much in a year, and LG makes twice as much as Comcast. Who do you suppose has more lawyers and engineers? 

For More:
- Light Reading's Digital Cable News has details here 

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