Click here to close now.

Welcome!

Search Authors: Liz McMillan, Carmen Gonzalez, Elizabeth White, John Wetherill, Mike Kavis

Blog Feed Post

Comcast’s Final NBCU Stake: Vertical Integration Complete

BROADBAND CONVERGENT - Business News Broadband-Mobile-Cable-Telecom Markets

NBC-Universal-Comcast (NBC Building Sign)

Comcast’s Final NBCU Stake: Vertical Integration CompleteComcast’s acquired the final stake in NBCU creating a vertical integration of both content and delivery of news and entertainment to U.S. consumers. Divestiture as a remedy should be viewed as a real possibility for Comcast now as its market power moves to dominate competitors. Although Wall Street analysts gave this deal a “thumbs up”, they continue to deny the overlying impact of how market dynamics will change as a result.

Inherently, the deal puts Comcast on a vertically integrated path of controlling both content and delivery of consumer news and entertainment. That should trigger a tipping point of more scrutiny from regulators as the giant moves to eliminate competition by gaining more control of external costs and distribution metrics.

Cable TV and/or Broadband Divestiture Seems Reasonable

It should be reasonable that with market domination of broadband, cable TV and content within the U.S., creating a clear business advantage, might inevitably raise more questions about the giant’s intentions toward competitors. Controlling those three markets, distinctly integrated with one another vertically, can only be construed as dangerous to consumer interests, as well as future market competition. Therefore U.S. regulators must take a harder look at how this recent transaction can benefit the public. Divesting is an answer that seems reasonable for Comcast whether it be its Cable TV Business or Broadband holdings.

Prevention of Monopoly

“There are times when companies are compelled to divest because of legal issues. In order to maintain fair trade and prevent monopolistic practices, anti-trust commissions in various countries mandate divestment. In the United States, the government agency responsible for determining if a company needs to sell or release its non-core asset is the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).” Read more: http://www.finweb.com/investing/6-reasons-to-divest.html#ixzz2Ku7dKf3p

 
Comcast Subscriber Metrics        

Customers

Net Adds

(in thousands)    

YE11

   

YE12

   

4Q11

   

4Q12

   

2011

     

2012

 
Video Customers    

22,331

   

21,995

   

(17

)    

(7

)    

(459

)    

(336

)
High-Speed Internet Customers    

18,144

   

19,367

   

336

     

341

     

1,159

     

1,223

 
Voice Customers    

9,342

   

9,955

   

146

     

168

     

732

     

613

 
Combined Video, HSI and Voice Customers

49,817

   

51,317

465

   

503

   

1,432

   

1,500

See (Comcast Reports 4th Quarter and Year-End 2012 Results)

By far Comcast has more triple play subscribers than any of its cable counterparts. Direct TV and Dish Network are primarily video distributors lacking the vertical integration to compete effectively with a Comcast. Let us not make a mistake of believing there is not a clear market advantage. Clearly, having large content reserves, a mega distribution pipeline for broadband and cable TV is a disadvantage for any competitor.

Top 25 Multi-channel Video Distributors September 2012

Rank

MSO

BasicVideoSubscribers

1

Comcast Corporation

22,002,000

2

DirecTV

19,981,000

3

Dish Network Corporation

14,042,000

4

Time Warner Cable, Inc.

12,344,000

5

Cox Communications, Inc.1

4,595,000

6

Verizon Communications, Inc.

4,592,000

7

AT&T, Inc.

4,344,000

 

A Lack of Competition

This multi-channel video distributor list in the U.S. indicates the divide in sheer video customer domination. Although Satellite DBS customers are most closely aligned with Comcast numbers, there is a lack of overlap in various markets. Understandably, consumers are not left with clear choices in every market, nor are those consumers advantaged with a DBS delivered broadband competitor in most markets.

As can be seen in this chart the potential competitors of Comcast via both Verizon and AT&T, have long ago began to discontinue their direct competition efforts due to the inherent costs of building new infrastructure. Although Google Fiber and FreedomPoP have made insignificant in-roads in a few markets, the majority of content, broadband, and video distributors remains non-existent. The true danger here is the scope of a Comcast vertically integrated control of such a large market area. The advantage is clear in that controlling both internal and external costs and distribution metrics represents and unfair market distinction.

Image via CNNMoney

Comcast’s Final NBCU Stake: Vertical Integration Complete

Read the original blog entry...

More Stories By Leonard Grace

Leonard Grace is the founder of Broadband Convergent, an industry leader tech news and analysis for Broadband, Cable, Mobile, Wireless, and Telecom markets providing strategic direction, business trending, sprinkled with lots of opinion. Technology executives must focus on key business indicators with fast, effective and researched analytics to provide leading edge decisions that propel their organizations ahead of the competition. Broadband Convergent researches the latest trends, strategy, and analysis to deliver the results executives and managers depend on to make strategic business decisions. Whether it is (to-market-strategy), the latest competitive advantage, leading edge technology or legislative updates; Broadband Convergent is on top of intelligence gathering and reporting to make industry leaders comfortable with making decisions based on our findings. Our company is a leader in providing fast, efficient, and economical insights into competitive markets, business strategies, market trends and the future outlook of the legislative landscape. Leonard has produced 250+ highly researched articles providing a unique perspective on current Broadband issues including Cable, Mobile, Wireless and Telecom sectors. His insights dig down to find the why’s and why-not’s of industry decisions and how those effect the commerce of broadband.

@ThingsExpo Stories
The explosion of connected devices / sensors is creating an ever-expanding set of new and valuable data. In parallel the emerging capability of Big Data technologies to store, access, analyze, and react to this data is producing changes in business models under the umbrella of the Internet of Things (IoT). In particular within the Insurance industry, IoT appears positioned to enable deep changes by altering relationships between insurers, distributors, and the insured. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Michael Sick, a Senior Manager and Big Data Architect within Ernst and Young's Financial Servi...
The major cloud platforms defy a simple, side-by-side analysis. Each of the major IaaS public-cloud platforms offers their own unique strengths and functionality. Options for on-site private cloud are diverse as well, and must be designed and deployed while taking existing legacy architecture and infrastructure into account. Then the reality is that most enterprises are embarking on a hybrid cloud strategy and programs. In this Power Panel at 15th Cloud Expo (http://www.CloudComputingExpo.com), moderated by Ashar Baig, Research Director, Cloud, at Gigaom Research, Nate Gordon, Director of T...
“In the past year we've seen a lot of stabilization of WebRTC. You can now use it in production with a far greater degree of certainty. A lot of the real developments in the past year have been in things like the data channel, which will enable a whole new type of application," explained Peter Dunkley, Technical Director at Acision, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at @ThingsExpo, held Nov 4–6, 2014, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Intelligent Systems Services will exhibit at SYS-CON's 16th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 9-11, 2015, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. Established in 1994, Intelligent Systems Services Inc. is located near Washington, DC, with representatives and partners nationwide. ISS’s well-established track record is based on the continuous pursuit of excellence in designing, implementing and supporting nationwide clients’ mission-critical systems. ISS has completed many successful projects in Healthcare, Commercial, Manufacturing, ...
PubNub on Monday has announced that it is partnering with IBM to bring its sophisticated real-time data streaming and messaging capabilities to Bluemix, IBM’s cloud development platform. “Today’s app and connected devices require an always-on connection, but building a secure, scalable solution from the ground up is time consuming, resource intensive, and error-prone,” said Todd Greene, CEO of PubNub. “PubNub enables web, mobile and IoT developers building apps on IBM Bluemix to quickly add scalable realtime functionality with minimal effort and cost.”
Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, including what it is today, what it might ultimately be, the role of wearable tech, and technology gaps stil...
DevOps tends to focus on the relationship between Dev and Ops, putting an emphasis on the ops and application infrastructure. But that’s changing with microservices architectures. In her session at DevOps Summit, Lori MacVittie, Evangelist for F5 Networks, will focus on how microservices are changing the underlying architectures needed to scale, secure and deliver applications based on highly distributed (micro) services and why that means an expansion into “the network” for DevOps.
For years, we’ve relied too heavily on individual network functions or simplistic cloud controllers. However, they are no longer enough for today’s modern cloud data center. Businesses need a comprehensive platform architecture in order to deliver a complete networking suite for IoT environment based on OpenStack. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Dhiraj Sehgal from PLUMgrid will discuss what a holistic networking solution should really entail, and how to build a complete platform that is scalable, secure, agile and automated.
We’re no longer looking to the future for the IoT wave. It’s no longer a distant dream but a reality that has arrived. It’s now time to make sure the industry is in alignment to meet the IoT growing pains – cooperate and collaborate as well as innovate. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Jim Hunter, Chief Scientist & Technology Evangelist at Greenwave Systems, will examine the key ingredients to IoT success and identify solutions to challenges the industry is facing. The deep industry expertise behind this presentation will provide attendees with a leading edge view of rapidly emerging IoT oppor...
In the consumer IoT, everything is new, and the IT world of bits and bytes holds sway. But industrial and commercial realms encompass operational technology (OT) that has been around for 25 or 50 years. This grittier, pre-IP, more hands-on world has much to gain from Industrial IoT (IIoT) applications and principles. But adding sensors and wireless connectivity won’t work in environments that demand unwavering reliability and performance. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Ron Sege, CEO of Echelon, will discuss how as enterprise IT embraces other IoT-related technology trends, enterprises with i...
When it comes to the Internet of Things, hooking up will get you only so far. If you want customers to commit, you need to go beyond simply connecting products. You need to use the devices themselves to transform how you engage with every customer and how you manage the entire product lifecycle. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Sean Lorenz, Technical Product Manager for Xively at LogMeIn, will show how “product relationship management” can help you leverage your connected devices and the data they generate about customer usage and product performance to deliver extremely compelling and reliabl...
The Internet of Things (IoT) is causing data centers to become radically decentralized and atomized within a new paradigm known as “fog computing.” To support IoT applications, such as connected cars and smart grids, data centers' core functions will be decentralized out to the network's edges and endpoints (aka “fogs”). As this trend takes hold, Big Data analytics platforms will focus on high-volume log analysis (aka “logs”) and rely heavily on cognitive-computing algorithms (aka “cogs”) to make sense of it all.
The Internet of Everything (IoE) brings together people, process, data and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before – transforming information into knowledge and knowledge into wisdom. IoE creates new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented opportunities to improve business and government operations, decision making and mission support capabilities. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Gary Hall, Chief Technology Officer, Federal Defense at Cisco Systems, will break down the core capabilities of IoT in multiple settings and expand upon IoE for bo...
With several hundred implementations of IoT-enabled solutions in the past 12 months alone, this session will focus on experience over the art of the possible. Many can only imagine the most advanced telematics platform ever deployed, supporting millions of customers, producing tens of thousands events or GBs per trip, and hundreds of TBs per month. With the ability to support a billion sensor events per second, over 30PB of warm data for analytics, and hundreds of PBs for an data analytics archive, in his session at @ThingsExpo, Jim Kaskade, Vice President and General Manager, Big Data & Ana...
One of the biggest impacts of the Internet of Things is and will continue to be on data; specifically data volume, management and usage. Companies are scrambling to adapt to this new and unpredictable data reality with legacy infrastructure that cannot handle the speed and volume of data. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Don DeLoach, CEO and president of Infobright, will discuss how companies need to rethink their data infrastructure to participate in the IoT, including: Data storage: Understanding the kinds of data: structured, unstructured, big/small? Analytics: What kinds and how responsiv...
Cloudian, Inc., the leading provider of hybrid cloud storage solutions, today announced availability of Cloudian HyperStore 5.1 software. HyperStore 5.1 is an enhanced Amazon S3-compliant, plug-and-play hybrid cloud software solution that now features full Apache Hadoop integration. Enterprises can now transform big data into smart data by running Hadoop analytics on HyperStore software and appliances. This in-place analytics, with no need to offload data to other systems for Hadoop analyses, enables customers to derive meaningful business intelligence from their data quickly, efficiently and ...
Since 2008 and for the first time in history, more than half of humans live in urban areas, urging cities to become “smart.” Today, cities can leverage the wide availability of smartphones combined with new technologies such as Beacons or NFC to connect their urban furniture and environment to create citizen-first services that improve transportation, way-finding and information delivery. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Laetitia Gazel-Anthoine, CEO of Connecthings, will focus on successful use cases.
Sensor-enabled things are becoming more commonplace, precursors to a larger and more complex framework that most consider the ultimate promise of the IoT: things connecting, interacting, sharing, storing, and over time perhaps learning and predicting based on habits, behaviors, location, preferences, purchases and more. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Tom Wesselman, Director of Communications Ecosystem Architecture at Plantronics, will examine the still nascent IoT as it is coalescing, including what it is today, what it might ultimately be, the role of wearable tech, and technology gaps stil...
The true value of the Internet of Things (IoT) lies not just in the data, but through the services that protect the data, perform the analysis and present findings in a usable way. With many IoT elements rooted in traditional IT components, Big Data and IoT isn’t just a play for enterprise. In fact, the IoT presents SMBs with the prospect of launching entirely new activities and exploring innovative areas. CompTIA research identifies several areas where IoT is expected to have the greatest impact.
Wearable devices have come of age. The primary applications of wearables so far have been "the Quantified Self" or the tracking of one's fitness and health status. We propose the evolution of wearables into social and emotional communication devices. Our BE(tm) sensor uses light to visualize the skin conductance response. Our sensors are very inexpensive and can be massively distributed to audiences or groups of any size, in order to gauge reactions to performances, video, or any kind of presentation. In her session at @ThingsExpo, Jocelyn Scheirer, CEO & Founder of Bionolux, will discuss ho...