While all the dealmaking that needs to go on between programmers and pay TV operators continues to render the TV Everywhere initiative confusing for the average consumer, the watch-anywhere-in-the-home apps being provided by cable and satellite companies seem to be gaining traction.
On Tuesday, for example, Cablevision announced that its Optimum app will now be available for Kindle Fire users, further proliferating the technology that lets the cable company’s users stream live TV programming from their receivers to notebooks, tablets and smart phones anywhere within their home.
Also read: Few cable users aware of TV Everywhere
Cablevision says that 1 million of its 3.2 million video subscribers are using Optimum.
TV Everywhere, of course, was the broad pay TV initiative introduced by Time Warner Inc. and Comcast back in 2009, intended to let cable and satellite subscribers watch programming on next-generation devices.
TV Everywhere player apps provided by content providers are still profoundly limited based on what deals have been cut with the myriad pay TV operators and device makers.
For example, I can download the Watch ESPN app for my iPad 2, but I can’t use its core functions because Disney hasn’t yet made a TV Everywhere deal with my multichannel company, DirecTV, for ESPN.
At least in my home, however, I can watch a live stream of ESPN — or any channel I subscribe to — on my tablet or iPhone via the DirecTV Everywhere app, provided my DirecTV digital video recorder is connected to my home network.
Currently, the box is not connected. But I called the satellite carrier’s tech support center Tuesday, and a friendly rep agreed to next-day me free of charge the company’s “Cinema Connection Kit,” which he said will connect the receiver to my home network with minimal setup.
A Cablevision rep I spoke to right after said his company offers a similar gear free of charge. However, since Cablevision is also the internet service provider for most of the customers it delivers video too, most of its boxes are already connected to users’ home networks.
For its part, Cablevision also announced its second-quarter earnings Tuesday, reporting a 0.5 percent increase in revenue to $1.7 billion and a 16.7 percent profit decline to $26.3 million. Video subscribers stayed flat at 3.2 million.