News

Appeals court blocks FCC from sharing program-deal info

Siding with a group of major programmers, a federal appeals court in Washington, D.C. has blocked the FCC from publicly disclosing information about deals between pay-TV operators and networks as part of its ongoing merger reviews.

Dish, Turner forge extension: restores CNN, averts TNT, TBS blackouts

Dish Network and Turner Broadcasting announced an end to a bitter carriage standoff that saw CNN disappear from the satellite operator's program guide for a month, and also threatened to pull TNT and TBS from the service.

As Aereo claims Chapter 11, DirecTV admits kicking the tires on its OTT model

Raging against the dying of the light for nearly five months following its devastating setback in the U.S. Supreme Court, streaming service Aereo announced Friday that it will liquidate its assets through Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

Senate unanimously approves House's satellite TV bill

The Senate has unanimously approved a House bill that enables satellite-based pay-TV operators to pipe in broadcast signals from distant network stations to rural areas that lack a network affiliate.

Dish, FCC among the winners in hugely successful AWS-3 auction

After just six days, the FCC's AWS-3 spectrum auction has exceeded even the most wildly optimistic analyst forceast, raising $24 billion in winning bids. And while there are indicators that the white-hot bidding is begining to finally slow just a bit, some believe the AWS-3 could last up to five more weeks. FierceWireless executive editor Mike Dano has a complete breakdown right here.

HBO's Plepler: OTT service isn't 'either/or, it's additive'

Speaking in Los Angeles Thursday, HBO Chairman and CEO Richard Plepler staunchly resisted claims that his company's soon-to-launch, a la carte, over-the-top programming service would "cannibalize" HBO's existing premium cable business.

CBS gives 'short term extension' to Dish; satellite operator now in showdown with Comcast Sports, too

With its carriage deal with Dish Network expiring Thursday, Nov. 20, CBS Corp. has agreed keep its channels on the satellite operator's program guide until Nov. 25.

While Netflix viewing remains flat, Amazon SVOD usage is on the move, Sandvine reports

Offering some of the most illuminating data available in the murky area of audience research for streaming content, Sandvine's latest bi-annual traffic trends report shows fledgling SVOD service Amazon Prime Instant Video has nearly doubled its footprint over the last six months as usage for the sector's dominant player, Netflix, has remained largely flat.

Comcast charm campaign continues with app to track technician arrival time

Continuing to execute a public charm campaign under new customer service czar Charlie Herrin, Comcast intends to unwind the age-old cable industry practice of leaving customers in the dark all day as they wait for a technician.

House passes satellite reauthorization bill as key opponent says he won't stand in the way

The House of Representatives passed a compromise version of the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act Reauthorization (STELAR), keeping intact language that would end the FCC's ban on set-top boxes with integrated security features.

DirecTV: Oh, one more thing, 4K setup will set you back $50

Trumpeting the debut of U.S. pay-TV's first 4K service with a Nov. 13 press release announcing a hodgepodge of older Paramount titles and K2 nature films in the Ultra HD format, DirecTV said its subscribers needed only a Genie DVR and Samsung 4K TV set to enjoy the super high-resolution fare.

OTT operators look to survive by forming alliances

Being an OTT operator is a little bit like being a contestant on CBS' Survivor. You're stuck out on your own island, reinventing the wheel each day, fighting your battles alone as you try not to get voted off the show.

'Hell, yes!' Malone will go after TWC if Comcast can't close the deal

Liberty Global Media Chairman John Malone hasn't given up on acquiring Time Warner Cable. Asked during Liberty's investor day event Wednesday if he'd go after the MSO if its proposed acquisition by Comcast was scuttled by regulators, Malone responded with an emphatic "Hell, yes."

Dish share prices spike over 7% following FCC's hot spectrum auction

As predicted by analysts and the satellite carrier itself, the auction established a value for Dish's wireless licenses. And that value is certainly pleasing to Dish shareholders, with the highly successful auction heading in its late rounds towards total bids of $20 billion, nearly double the $10.07 billion reserve price.

RSNs begin to cash in on NBA multiscreen rights

While Major League Baseball has restricted regional sports networks from acquiring multiscreen rights when they carve out broadcast deals with individual teams, the practice has been encouraged by the National Basketball Association.

Comcast announces another mea culpa amid billing system conversion

Two weeks after it delivered a mea culpa amid national service outages for its X1 pay-TV platform, the nation's No. 1 cable company has admitted to fielding complaints about billing errors in select regions in which it is transitioning its billing systems.

From Ergen to Roberts to Hastings: Profiling the 25 most powerful people in wireless and wireline

They can accidentally move share prices by talking in their sleep. On their Learjets, pilots ask them if they can use their electronic devices. An investor event they threw in 1987 is still going. They are FierceWireless' Most Powerful People in U.S. Wireless and Wireline 2014, and you can read the complete list and associated profiles right here.

Nielsen to begin measuring Netflix and Amazon viewership

Research company Nielsen will begin measuring the audiences of major SVOD services like Netflix and Amazon, providing programmers insight into how much their content is being streamed for the first time.

Two front war for Dish: TNT and TBS set to go dark Dec. 5

Turner Networks began warning Dish Network customers Tuesday that TNT and TBS could go dark on their satellite service Dec. 5, joining CBS in simultaneous public carriage battles against the pay-TV operator.

Claure puts stamp on Sprint with first executive hires

Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure shook up the carrier's executive team and further put his stamp on the organization by hiring new executives to his senior management group. Meanwhile, Sprint announced that several longtime executives will be leaving the company, including CMO Jeff Hallock, enterprise chief Matt Carter and communications director Bill White. FierceWireless Editor Phil Goldstein has a complete report here.