The NCTC announced a technology deal with multiscreen app company MobiTV that the cooperative says goes beyond the typical “hunting license” it provides for its more than 800 member cable companies.
According to the National Cable TV Cooperative, the agreement enables member cable operators to negotiate tech deals for MobiTV Connect, a platform that allows for the app-based delivery of TV programming.
“We’re very vested in helping Mobi get to critical mass,” Rich Fickle, president and CEO of NCTC, told Multichannel News. “We’re not going to be passive about this one. We’ll be very involved and supportive.”
Further shilling for his co-op’s new partner, Fickle said smaller cable companies have to genuflect a little if they want Silicon Valley companies to even look at them.
"You have to drive scale," Fickle said. "And with the shift of the larger MVPDs taking a lot of R&D in-house, you have to find ways to make it worthwhile for supplying companies to invest in the tier 2/tier 3 market. We feel that it’s important that we make commitments to help those companies justify this investment."
For its part, Emeryville, California-based MobiTV said it already licenses Connect to eight U.S. cable operators, including DirectLink, Citizens Fiber, USA Communication and Hickory Telephone.
“NCTC is a significant and respected group in our industry,” said Charlie Nooney, CEO and Chairman of MobiTV. “Our inclusion in their lineup of video distribution offerings couldn’t make us more proud of our commitment to innovation and future-proofing pay TV offerings for hundreds of independent video & broadband providers.”
“Our members may not have the resources to build solutions from the ground up, but they know that the transition to an IP-based infrastructure is highly beneficial,” Fickle added in a statement. “Live, on-demand, and local content delivered through robust, consumer-friendly applications is the future of television, and MobiTV’s end-to-end solution will help get them there. We reviewed proposals from 20 different companies and found MobiTV further ahead and more nimble than most of the other choices. Our members generally respond to consumer needs quicker than the largest companies in our industry. Clearly app-based delivery leveraging IP technology is where the video business model is heading.”