Charter Communications is putting the “finishing touches” on its WorldBox 2.0 set-top box and will finally debut the product in “the next few months,” DSLReports said Friday, citing an anonymous company source.
Charter reps didn’t immediately respond to Fierce’s inquiry for comment and confirmation.
WorldBox 2.0, which mainly taps the resources of Arris, has been in the works for several years. The device is said to be a more cost-effective version of the original IP/QAM hybrid WorldBox, developed by Cisco and Humax, and deployed into more than 2 million Spectrum homes, according to figures released by Charter during its fourth-quarter earnings call.
According to DSLReports’ source, the WorldBox 2.0 will have four tuners and a 1-terabyte hard drive—a seemingly anachronistic configuration, given that Charter’s Spectrum Guide user interface is cloud-based, and we’re living in the era of the cloud DVR. (DSLReports said Charter “ultimately” wants to integrated a cloud DVR, with availability listed as “sometime in 2019.”)
The box will offer integrated access to Netflix, “potentially” as a tunable channel.
Notably, the report said WorldBox 2.0 will not have whole-home or voice control capabilities. It will have a RF remote, similar to Comcast’s X1.
Also notably excluded, according to the report: 4K capabilities. The source told DSLReports that 4K support will come through the Spectrum app for the 4K-capable Roku.
Arris said during its second-quarter earrings call last summer that it was “racing to the finish line” to complete development on WorldBox 2.0.
Later reports suggested the box would start rolling out this spring.
Deployment of the device will be happy news for Arris, which has seen its CPE division slump in recent quarters.