The 10 biggest U.S. cable operators have deployed more than 22.75
million leased set-top boxes with CableCards since the Federal
Communications Commission's integrated set-top ban went into effect in
July 2007 -- a rule the cable industry claims has cost more than $1
billion to no discernable effect.
Meanwhile, those same cable
operators have deployed approximately 531,000 CableCards for use in
retail devices such as TiVo DVRs, according to figures supplied by the
National Cable & Telecommunications Association to the FCC Thursday.
FCC -- which has acknowledged the CableCard regime hasn't achieved the
aim of fostering a retail set-top market -- has proposed "fixes" to
CableCard rules and tentatively added the issue to its Oct. 14 meeting agenda.
agency has proposed adding new requirements on MSOs with respect to
CableCards, including: "more transparent" billing for CableCards; a
simplified installation processes; CableCards that can tune multiple
streams; and a streamlined CableCard device-certification process.