Friday, December 9, 2011

DirecTV an Immediate Loser From Verizon Deal with Cable Ops

Many of the ramifications of the recent purchase of mobile spectrum from cable operators by Verizon Wireless are yet to be seen. But one immediate consequence of an accompanying deal between Verizon Wireless, Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks is that DirecTV will lose a potential partner.

DirecTV has been testing a method of modifying a standard DirecTV receiver so that it also can use Long Term Evolution networks operated by Verizon Wireless. With the recent deal between Verizon Wireless, Comcast, Time Warner and Bright House, it appears that future option, which would have allowed DirecTV to sell a dual-play package of broadband access and video, is now foreclosed.

Verizon began trialing LTE service with DirecTV in late 2010. But Verizon continues to resell DirecTV satellite video service in areas where it does not offer its own FiOS TV product.

On Dec. 2, Verizon Wireless agreed to buy 122 AWS wireless spectrum licenses covering 259 million people from SpectrumCo, a consortium of Comcast, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, for $3.6 billion. That deal also includes several agreements that will enable the parties to sell each other's products. By 2015, the cable companies will have the option to sell Verizon Wireless service on a wholesale basis. Verizon Will End LTE Trials With DirecTV

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