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SBC Gets Wired

SBC Communications continues to take steps to roll out video services. The company formed a joint venture with 2Wire, a provider of broadband DSL-based service platforms. It will use 2Wire’s MediaPortal technology to deliver SBC Yahoo! DSL, DISH network satellite TV and home-networking services to subscribers. This offering is scheduled for a midyear arrival, with satellite TV, VOD and music-on-demand. In the future, added options will include combining wireless voice mail, e-mail and faxes into one mailbox. SBC is also in discussions with Court TV, says John Moran, the network’s VP of affiliate relations. “This allows quick delivery of a complete, personalized, and seamless entertainment and communications service to our customers while SBC companies build a fiber network,” says Ed Cholerton, CEO of newly formed SBC Media Solutions LLC and VP of SBC DSL.

Samsung and TWC Join Forces

Samsung and Time Warner Cable are working together on a specification for building two-way interactive-compliant TV sets and cable infrastructure. They will drill into the Open Cable Applications Platform from CableLabs. The goal is to make it easier for viewers to access everything from games to commerce through their TV set.

Lifetime plans New Home

Lifetime’s technical operations center will move to a 50,000-square-foot facility in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District in early 2006. Broadcast operations, post-production, engineering and corporate-data center are currently in Astoria, Queens. The move will allow the network to embrace tapeless operations. “The workflow will operate entirely on [tapeless] technology, which is revolutionary for a creative television network,” says Gwynne McConkey, SVP of operations, information systems & technology.

WISC Taps Omneon

WISC Madison, Wis., is installing an Omneon Spectrum media server system in a new network operations center that handles centralized playout of its analog and digital transmissions. It also services UPN affiliate WKBT LaCrosse. Leonard Charles, WISC director of engineering, says the server’s ability to handle both SD and HD was the key selling point. WISC will move to the server later this quarter, running it with Sundance Digital’s Titan automation system.