Video gateways - Top cable technologies in 2013


Nearly a decade ago, the first DVRs deployed by U.S. cable operators contained just one tuner, making it impossible for subscribers to watch one program while recording another show. In 2013, Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and other cable operators will deploy home video gateways--or "super DVRs" that contain six tuners capable of allowing subscribers to watch one live TV show while recording up to five other shows simultaneously.

Comcast and cable overbuilder WideOpenWest were among the first distributors to deploy home video gateways last year, with Comcast deploying Pace's (LSE: PIC.L) XG1 to power its Xfinity X1 service, and Suddenlink rolling out the Moxi gateway and whole-home solution from Arris. Cisco (Nasdaq: CSCO), Motorola Mobility and other set-top vendors have also developed gateways.

Verizon (NYSE: VZ) says that it will deploy gateways from Motorola in FiOS TV homes this year, and Time Warner Cable said in January that it will rollout gateways from vendors that it did not name during the second half of 2013.

With cable rivals DirecTV (Nasdaq: DTV) and Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH) both running ads that poke fun of cable DVRs, the video gateways will help operators compete with DirecTV's new Genie DVR and Dish's Hopper multiroom DVR.