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CES: Time Warner Cable dials into Sony TVs

Cut the cord? Time Warner Cable doesn't think so.

The cable operator signed an exclusive deal with Sony Corp. that would let Sony TV and Blu-ray users pipe in the cable company's offerings, via the Internet.

The agreement, announced Wednesday at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, would let Time Warner Cable subscribers tap into the cable company's on-demand content without an advanced digital video recorder or set-top box.

The companies did not disclose pricing and timing of the joint service.

Time Warner Cable and other pay TV distributors fear that connected televisions threaten to give viewers the option of cutting their cable subscriptions and piping their entertainment via the Internet instead.

While the deal with Sony currently doesn't give non-subscribers access to Time Warner's video-on-demand programming, it demonstrates that it would be technically possible for the cable company to reach out to viewers who cut the cable cord but still have Internet access. For now, the deal simply lets existing Time Warner customers tap into its on-demand content without a DVR or advanced set-top box.

For Sony, the deal is part of a strategy to pack as many entertainment options as possible into its Bravia TVs and other Internet connected devices, such as Blu-ray players and PlayStation 3 game consoles. Sony already has Netflix's Instant Watch service, Amazon Video On Demand, YouTube videos and its own library of shows and movies available for purchase or rent.

Sony also announced it would introduce a music subscription service on its Internet connected TVs, Blu-ray players and PlayStation 3 console in the U.S. within the next three months. Called Music Powered by Qriocity, the service rolled out last year in the U.K.

-- Alex Pham

 
Comments () | Archives (1)

"While the deal with Sony currently doesn't give non-subscribers access to Time Warner's video-on-demand programming, it demonstrates that it would be technically possible for the cable company to reach out to viewers who cut the cable cord but still have Internet access."

Sure, when hades freezes over TW Cable will make viewing available to Internet customers that are NOT paying TW Cable it's pound of flesh.

TW owns Warner Bros. Sony owns Universal? Comcast wants to own a studio and an over the air network. Anyone see a pattern here?

Freeze out anyone who doesn't pay for cable access.

TW is shaking in it's boots at the spectacle of Amazon and Netflix streaming. They want to make sure they can freeze out these upstart companies for having the foresight the cable companies didn't have while they kept raising rates to their customers, secure in the notion that the customers were sheep who were there for the shearing, captive customers who could get entertainment from no other source, let alone cheaper.

There are recently abundant articles pointing to TW directly, their CEO bragging that SVOD companies could and would be frozen out of higher rated TV fare. SVOD = Amazon and Netflix among others, these two being the largest at the time.

These cable companies were granted huge subsidies to build out their networks, aka taxpayer dollars. They do NOTHING in the public interest, which, I believe, is incumbent upon them by the rules. Cut the cord people.


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