The FCC just ruled to remove local price controls on basic-cable service in a number of municipalities, including two where Verizon FiOS TV is set to take on Cablevision: Nyack and Hempstead, New York. The FCC ruled on the price deregulation based on a competition test that applies when the terrestrial video provider is a local phone company, or LEC. The test requires that the cable incumbent demonstrate the phone company intends to offer video services. The ruling takes the power to cap the price for basic-cable away from local governments, and cable operators within such territories no longer have to offer uniform rate structures--in other words they can create numerous tiers that a subscriber has to buy before reaching premium offerings and VOD.
For more on the FCC orders:
- check out this piece from MultiChannel News