TiVo's CEO says IPTV, cloud to play bigger roles

IPTV and cloud-based services will play a bigger role in TiVo's (Nasdaq: TIVO) business plans going forward, President and CEO Tom Rogers said during a first quarter earnings call with analysts.

"Obviously the IPTV implementations that we're pursuing do open up possibilities with another class of operator that would be interesting for us to have relationships with going forward," Rogers said, adding that he does see "the possibility of pursuing deals more fully there."

TiVo's biggest IPTV deal to date is with Com Hem, a Swedish IPTV provider with nearly 2 million subscribers. Com Hem is taking pre-registration prior to launching the service, scheduled for some time in the first half of this year.

What happens there will have an impact across the potential IPTV customer base, Rogers said, noting that it should offer an education for potential customers that are worried about the capital expense of an IPTV deployment.

"One of the great virtues of an IPTV implementation is that it does not involve having to implement through a set-top box; it involves being able to use other devices quite readily and increasingly IPTV," Rogers said.

Even when IPTV does require a set-top, "it will be a much thinner client that will enable people to reduce cap expense as they look at how to more broadly distribute IPTV," he continued.

That, he said, should appeal to customers across both Europe and North America.

"We think Com Hem will be a key showcase for us as others consider their own transition and we will have different examples for people around the world to look at," Rogers said.

For its own purposes, TiVo is speeding up the adoption of a next-generation set-top for IP-based implementations including but beyond IPTV, said Naveen Chopra, CFO and SVP of corporate development and strategy.

"Today, even those deploying IP-based implementations are still doing so with relatively expensive in-home investments," Chopra pointed out. "I think the faster we can evolve to next-generation chipsets, next-generation software, etc., we will be able to make a dent in that and lower the hurdle for a lot of these operators," he continued.

Among that development is the ongoing work with the TiVo Mini and how that plays into a situation in conjunction with an IP box that "really needs very little other than an IP connection," Chopra added.

For more:
- see the earnings release
- and the earnings call transcript

Earnings Summary: Wireline telecom earnings in the first quarter of 2013

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