Altice recently took over two cable companies—Suddenlink and Cablevision—that weren’t exactly on the cutting edge of TV distribution.
Before he sauntered out the door for the last time in Bethpage, New York, former Cablevision chief James Dolan was telling investors that “the video product has lost a tremendous amount of margin” and that broadband was the cable operator’s “No. 1 product.”
For its part, Suddenlink had given up on carrying a major programming conglomerate, Viacom, and was bleeding TV subscribers.
Not only has Altice given the erstwhile Suddenlink its MTV back, the operator is about to roll out its modern hybrid TV set-top/modem/router hybrid product, dubbed “The Box,” in the U.S. Known as “La Box” in Europe, the system has already been deployed back home by Altice and has achieved some applause for its improved UX and voice control.
Altice isn’t growing its video business yet, but the bleeding is not accelerating—the company lost 37,000 TV users across its two units in the second quarter, roughly flat with the year-ago time period.