Charter Will Buy Motorola Modems

Horsham, Pa.-Motorola Broadband Communications SectorsaidCharter Communications Inc.has placed an order to purchase at least 300,000 "SB3100" and "SB4100" "SURFboard" cable modems by the end of 2000.

The deal maintains Motorola Broadband's role as Charter's primary supplier of Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification cable modems, the vendor said.

Motorola Broadband's SB3100 model supports the DOCSIS 1.1 specification, which handles quality-of-service and Internet-protocol filtering for voice-over-IP applications. The SB4100 also supports DOCSIS 1.1, but features 10/100 Ethernet-network support for up to 32 simultaneous users and "plug-and-play," universal-serial-bus interfaces.

Charter, which began buying cable modems from General Instrument Corp. (now Motorola Broadband) in 1999, reported in the second quarter that it had just shy of 150,000 high-speed subscribers. A company spokesman said the MSO is on target to end the year with 280,000 cable-modem customers.