Layer3 TV conducting pre-launch tests in D.C., Boston and Houston


IP-delivered premium pay-TV service Layer3 TV has denied a report that it's begun rollout in Washington D.C. 

A company rep told FierceCable that the Beltway and its surrounding regions is among a handful of metropolitan areas in which the service is conducting pre-launch tests. Besides its home base of Denver, and Chicago, where the Layer3 TV service first rolled out over the summer, the company is seeking workers in Boston, Houston and Washington, D.C.

TV Predictions reported that the service is offering denizens of the D.C. market more than 240 channels (200 of them in HD) at a promotional price of $79.99 for the first 12 months, with free installation and no contracts. Premium channels HBO, Epix and Showtime are included in the promotional package. 

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D.C. residents, TV Predictions said, also have access to the Big Four local broadcast affiliates, as well as PBS, and they also get Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic. Notably excluded, according to TV Predictions: MASN, TV home to Major League Baseball’s Washington nationals and Baltimore Orioles.

RELATED: Layer3 set to take on Comcast in Chicago, reveals Altice as backer

Now backed by Altice USA , Layer3 uses a wireless DVR set-top that connects to the company’s fiber network via the user’s broadband connection. While that constitutes IP delivery of video, the company doesn’t see itself competing with skinny IP services like Sling TV.

For one, its bundle is as robust as traditional pay-TV — down to its 4K-capable DVR set-top, which can record up to eight shows at once. 

The company doesn’t classify itself as “over-the-top,” either. 

Layer3 CEO Jeff Binder told Multichannel News that the company’s core systems are similar to those typically found in traditional cable systems. Further, Layer3’s video signals don’t move across the public internet. He said Layer3 relies on standard interconnection deals with local service providers, as it doesn’t operate or own a local access network. 

“We control as much of the network as we can,” Binder said. “We don’t see congestion in the last mile.”

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