California regulators continue to take a "hands-off" approach to the fact that Los Angeles Dodgers baseball games are unavailable to 70 percent of fans thanks to a stalemate between Time Warner Cable's SportsNet LA and surrounding cable, telco and satellite providers.
Cable companies may still not have the same ubiquity or clout that incumbent telcos have enjoyed for years in the wholesale market, but it's clear that they are having an impact. In our latest feature, Cable hones its wholesale skills in special access and wireless backhaul, we take a look at how cable operators are taking on the wholesale services industry, providing services to a host of wireless operators, CLECs, IXCs and ILECs that need to fulfill out-of-territory service requirements for multi-site business customers.
Wireless operators have become one of cable's largest wholesale customers. According to Vertical Systems Group, cable is the fastest growing segment in the wholesale and retail business Ethernet markets.
Cable MSOs continue to expand their wholesale access service portfolios, providing services to a mix of traditional carriers and wireless operators. Having a wholesale channel is another way cable can offset residential video subscriber losses. But the cable wholesale services market could be shaken up if two major multi-billion dollar deals are approved: Comcast/Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications/Bright House Networks.
With the FCC and Justice Department entering the last third of their review of Comcast's proposed purchase of Time Warner Cable, Comcast is back on offense.
Charter Communications' proposed $10.4 billion purchase of Bright House Networks augments its position in the business services market, which is currently dominated by Comcast and Time Warner Cable. With the deal, and its associated Ethernet footprint that includes 18,000 miles of fiber, Charter increases its scale across business services in a number of key vertical industry segments, including healthcare, hospitality, government and education.
Charter Communications is increasing its stake in the business services market by purchasing Orlando, Fla.-based Bright House Networks for $10.4 billion, a deal that will help it better compete against business rivals Comcast, Cox and Time Warner Cable.
Could pay-TV's most truculent carriage impasse finally break open by Major League Baseball's Opening Day? TWC is reportedly "actively pursuing" a deal to expand coverage of its Dodgers channel, SportsNet LA.
Cable operators are in an interesting position to drive new competition in the wholesale special access market, giving CLECs the ability to connect their multi-site business customers in areas where they can't economically reach with their own facilities today.
Delays, delays, nothing but delays... With the FCC once again suspending its regulatory review process, Comcast once more pushed back its expected close of its proposed $45.2 billion purchase of Time Warner Cable.