Cable Operators Enlist Amazon to Battle Cord-Cutting

(Image credit: Amazon)

LAS VEGAS—If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. That seems to be the motive behind the announcement this week when the National Cable Television Cooperative (NCTC), a group representing more than 750 rural broadband and cable operators in all 50 states, announced a new initiative that allows NCTC member companies to purchase Amazon Fire TV streaming devices at a discount.

The new discount program will enable NCTC's member companies to provide their subscribers with high-quality streaming media devices, including Fire TV Stick, Fire TV Stick 4K, and Fire TV Cube. Operators may offer the Fire TV devices bundled with their pay-TV video service offerings or in conjunction with their broadband services. NCTC expects to begin offering the discounted Fire TV products to NCTC's member companies in the coming weeks.

"As more of our members deploy app-based pay-TV offerings, having the option to purchase Amazon Fire TV streaming devices at a discount will help our broadband and cable operator members retain video customers by creating affordable options that do not rely on a traditional set-top box. These devices are a great compliment to services like MobiTV or for broadband only offerings by our members," said Rich Fickle, president of NCTC. "NCTC is committed to creating new ways for independent cable and broadband providers to delight customers by offering the products and services that today's video and broadband consumers want."

Tom Butts

Tom has covered the broadcast technology market for the past 25 years, including three years handling member communications for the National Association of Broadcasters followed by a year as editor of Video Technology News and DTV Business executive newsletters for Phillips Publishing. In 1999 he launched for internet B2B portal Verticalnet. He is also a charter member of the CTA's Academy of Digital TV Pioneers. Since 2001, he has been editor-in-chief of TV Tech (, the leading source of news and information on broadcast and related media technology and is a frequent contributor and moderator to the brand’s Tech Leadership events.