FCC Approves CableCARD Rule Changes

The FCC (www.fcc.gov) issued a Third Report and Order and Order on Reconsideration (Third R&O) on CableCARDs in an effort to remedy the CableCARD regime's shortcomings by: (1) ensuring that retail devices have access to all video programming that is presched...

The FCC (www.fcc.gov) issued a Third Report and Order and Order on Reconsideration (Third R&O) on CableCARDs in an effort to remedy the CableCARD regime's shortcomings by: (1) ensuring that retail devices have access to all video programming that is prescheduled by the programming provider; (2) making CableCARD pricing and billing more transparent; (3) streamlining CableCARD installations; and (4) streamlining requirements for manufacturers who build CableCARD devices.

In a statement, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski said: "The rules we adopt today require comparable treatment of retail and leased devices. They will also ensure that consumers who buy set-top boxes get the equipment credit and services to which they are entitled, creating a level playing field. We're also streamlining the process for getting set-top boxes to market by eliminating unnecessary delays and costs associated with set-top box testing and certification."

FCC Commissioner Michael J. Copps hinted that the CableCARD concept is trailing the tech curve, among other imperfections, saying: "To some, the order that we approve today may be seen as the CableCARD fix. It isn't, but it does move the ball forward."
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