Wheeler may consider pay-TV's 'Ditch the Box' proposal over original unlocking plan

FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler may be warming to the idea, put forth by pay-TV industry players, of getting rid of set-top box requirements entirely and instead making it possible to utilize consumer-friendly streaming devices instead, in a strategy the industry has dubbed "Ditch the Box."

At least, that's how it seemed in a House Energy and Commerce Committee meeting on Tuesday, where Wheeler said he is "heartened" by the willingness of the industry and stakeholders to tackle the "Unlock the Box" proposal and offer various counterproposals instead. "Everyone can agree that consumers should be empowered to watch TV how they want, with the device, app, or interface that they choose," he said.

However, he then pulled a Reagan card on the majority Republican committee. "I am following President Reagan's good advice, 'trust, but verify,'" Wheeler said, explaining that the FCC needs to understand all details of the proposal and make sure consumers' privacy and programmers' interests are protected. FierceCable has more details here.

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