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Frontier Gets Bullish About TV in Durham, N.C.

Frontier Communications  is gearing up to launch FrontierTV, an IPTV service, to select parts of the Durham, N.C., area in January using the telco’s copper and fiber networks.

According to Telecompetitor, Frontier’s coming linear and VOD pay TV offering will leverage lessons learned in some acquired AT&T U-verse and FiOS TV markets and apply them to its incumbent markets, starting with Durham, where it will grapple for video supremacy against Time Warner Cable, AT&T GigaPower, and newcomer Google Fiber.

Dennis Bloss, Frontier VP and GM for the Durham market, told the publication that video will become an important part of the bundle in the market.  “Offering video changes our take rates and without a video product, it’s hard to compete with broadband only,” Bloss told Telecompetitor, which notes that Frontier will base its IPTV service there on  Ericsson Mediaroom, the platform Ericsson acquired from Microsoft in September 2013.

The offering will feature a wireless HD-DVR with six tuners, enough storage for 500 hours of HD video, support for 4K, and a lineup of more than 630 channels. Frontier will complement it with a TV Everywhere app for web browsers, tablets and smartphones.

Frontier has not announced pricing, but noted that customers will be able to bundle it with voice and data starting at under $70 per month.

Frontier has been active on the video front in other ways. Earlier this year, it began to promote a new offering called FreedomTV that’s targeted cord-cutters and broadband-only subs that leans on TiVo’s Roamio OTA model and starts at $20 per month.  Subs who take the FreedomTV option can also get a TiVo Mini (an IP client to access service on an additional TV) or the TiVo Stream (a streaming sidecar that can deliver live TV and recorded shows to mobile devices) for an additional $9.99 per month.