HDTV still a battleground for service providers

It may seem like old news considering the growth of Internet TV, TV Everywhere and 3D TV, but good old HDTV is still a hot button when it comes to service provider competition.

Cable's planned move to switched digital video (SDV) should help overcome bandwidth limitations and compete on more level ground with telcos like Verizon with FiOS, and satellite providers. In fact, SDV can even facilitate faster adoption of 3D TV because it allows the service provider to transmit only the channel that the subscriber is watching. SDV also doesn't work with satellite television, which also benefits cable.

The web site Caffeinated Buzz laid out the competitive factors in an item that in the end took cable to task for doing more talking than acting on SDV. "A cable TV company has repeatedly sued a satellite TV company for claiming to be able to provide more HDTV channels than cable TV can offer," the item said. The cable company, it said, claims SDV will enable more channels but "the cable TV company seems more interested in arguing the point in court that it is actually implementing the technology that will provide those channels."

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