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Cable Television industry supports OCAP and two-way digital cable-ready product deployments

Executives of the nation's largest cable television and consumer electronics companies discussed elements of their pending plans for system preparation and early trials of advanced-interactive digital video technologies during a news conference organized by CableLabs held in conjunction with the 2006 International Consumer Electronics Show this month.

The discussion focused on the OCAP and two-way OpenCable (digital cable-ready) devices. OCAP is the middleware software specification that CableLabs has established to enable application writers to create new interactive services that will run on a broad range of advanced digital set tops and cable-ready TVs.

Beginning in 2006, Time Warner Cable plans to deploy OCAP capabilities in headends of cable systems serving five markets: New York City; Milwaukee; Green Bay; Lincoln, NE; and Waco, TX.

Comcast also plans to deploy OCAP in 2006 in Philadelphia; Denver; Union, NJ; and Boston. Advance/Newhouse will enable OCAP devices in Indianapolis. Charter Communications will deploy OCAP in select Charter markets beginning in 2006. Cox Communications and Cablevision Systems have announced similar plans.

LG, Panasonic, and Samsung, as well as Digeo, and other consumer electronics companies, have signed the CableLabs CableCARD Host Interface Licensing Agreement (CHILA), which defines the two-way host profiles that use OCAP, so that they can build two-way digital cable-ready products.

In November 2005, cable operators reported progress made on a new downloadable conditional access system that would replace systems based on removable security cards called CableCARD.

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