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The Cable Show 2011: Analysts Say Pricing, Products Will Drive Cable Growth

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Chicago - Innovative products like online content authentication and packages that are mindful of customers' economic pressures will help cable maintain its competitive edge, a panel of industry analysts said here Tuesday.

Most of the analysts on Tuesday's Cable Show panel discussion - "Profits, Platforms and Projections: Investment Analysts on the State of the Cable Economy" - agreed that cable has weathered a slew of competitive storms - first from satellite, then from telcos and so far as been able to hold off threats from over the top services. But Cable must continue to innovate to keep a step ahead of that competition, Collins Stewart media analyst Tom Eagan said.

Eagan said that over the past few years, the development cycle of new products has shrunk significantly, which is a good thing for cable operators.

"Keep being innovative," Eagan said, adding that development cycles have shrunk from 18 months to about 6 months.

Morgan Stanley media analyst Benjamin Swinburne said that authentication, particularly products like HBO Go and ESPN Live, are game changers for the industry.

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