Sean Alexander Takes a Stab at What Needs to Be Done to Fix CableCARD


ati tv wonder digital cable tuners

If you’ve been following Windows Media Center development for any length time, you’re familiar with the hurdles and pains of getting CableCARD support on a PC. It wasn’t that long ago that CableLabs was the only organization that could certify and license a PC maker’s CableCARD-ready PC for sale — and might I add… at an exorbitant cost. While those rules may have relaxed in recent times, where anyone can build their own CableCARD equipped PC with the right hardware, CableCARD technology used in both cable providers’ set-top boxes and PC tuners has not advanced much in more than a decade. This is where Sean Alexander, current Director of the Entertainment & Devices Division at Microsoft, chimes in via his latest blog post: “Is CableCARD Really Dead?” Sean covers 8 areas that need to be focused on immediately, with help from the FCC, to improve the CableCARD + tru2way technology experience, or else risk more of the same for the next 15 years. Hope FCC Chairman, Julius Genachowski, is paying attention.

Sean Alexander’s 8 points:

* Not to steal his thunder… I’ve only posted the points without his further explanations.

  • Simplify the Offerings
  • Drop the Cablecard Hardware Requirement
  • Incentivize operators to reboot and innovate
  • Support Federated, Personalized Logins
  • Advocate a Multi-screen, Multi-location solution
  • Unify the Interactive platform with minimum UX/performance requirements
  • Simplify Certification
  • Recognize need for Consumer Marketing

Related: Ars Technica – FCC admits CableCARD a failure, vows to try something else




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