TWC/Sinclair Aim @ Wed. --- Amazon To Stream --- Burke Resigns
• Analyze This: Facebook now worth $83B? Almost, at least on SharesPost. --- Sir Martin Sorrell, Ch/CEO of WPP, according to ad guru Jack Myers, notes that while content might be king, the real king is “ownership of content.” --- Bernstein Research’s Robin Bienesnstock posits “the second tier US wireless market appears ripe for consolidation.”
• People: Steve Burke has formally resigned his position as Comcast COO in order to devote full attention to the new NBCUniversal.
• Retrans, Renewals & Carriage: Wed. is the new “deadline” for a TWC/Sinclair formal deal.
• Tech: Insight picked ARRIS ServAssure for DOCSIS customer management.
• Folks: Steve Case is going to head a White House initiative on entrepreneurship (including how to cash out the right way?). --- Rich Jennings is back in Colorado as Comcast’s CO/NM regional VP as Comcast launches Xfinity Internet2go (via Clearwire in Denver). --- Crain’s New York says Eric Schmidt is peddling a book now ... Empire of the Mind: The Dawn of the Techno-Political Age.
• Online: Amazon appears ready to join the streaming mix with 5K movies and shows. Free for Prime members. --- Charter ‘s Internet Express is jumping from 8 to 12Mbps while its Plus speed grows from 16 to 18Mbps (no add’l charge). Pro versions go from 40 to 50Mbps and from 75 to 100Mbps (no add’l charge).
• In the Courts: FCC wants to delay the Verizon and MetroPCS challenges and has asked a court to dismiss the suits.
• Advertising/Marketing: Google TV is adding Viamedia’s ad inventory on 68 nets across 2M homes in 18 telco/MSO partners.
• Programming: HBO won big at SAG Awards. --- Comcast says it gets 350M VOD viewings a month and offers about 25K programs/movies. --- Winter X Games are over; Aspen restaurants are empty. --- The Lone Ranger launched on radio on this date in ’33.
• Mobile: Cell service is back up in Egypt this morning. --- Sprint is offering international 4G roaming. --- OnStar has signed more than 1.6K retail outlets.•
Maxwell: What's Next?
by Paul S. Maxwell
1) For NBCUniversal?
2) For Comcast?
3) For the competition?
4) For the chattering classes?
5) For the Federal Confusion Commission?
6) For Congress?
1) Steve Burke will bring some changes ... just watch Robert Greenblatt and Ted Harbert. Look for some subtle (and some not so subtle) organizational changes that, in some cases, might mimic the way ESPN has become the sports arm of ABC (or is ABC the entertainment arm of ESPN?). NBC has news covered better than anyone else as it can marshal NBC News, MSNBC news and CNBC ... anyone for an NBCUniversal Sports Podium (a 24/7 channel that incorporates all of the regional sports nets)? A dedicated OlympicNet every other year with a paid VOD package of everything going on?
2) In good hands with Neil Smit. (Though I do question the naming games underway ... Xfinity? Comcast? Which?)
3) FOX Network News?
4) Just more of the same ... let’s all look around? Will Jeff Bewkes call Sumner Redstone and ask to buy CBS? Better than a combo of CNN and CBS News?
5) More of the same ... with spectrum taking center stage soon ... maybe even with a glove thrown down at NAB.
6) Much, much, more of the same complete with escalating sideshows.
Meanwhile, spent part of an afternoon chatting with MSNBC’s Dylan Ratigan
last week as news from Egypt kept cutting down his time on air Friday
afternoon from Breckenridge ... took in the traveling partnership with Nucor as Dylan was reporting “Steel on Wheels: Innovation and Economy.” Interesting on-scene coverage of the (slow) rebound. Cody
and I got to One Ski Hill early and were conscripted to sit in the
interviewee chairs - complete with mics and ear pieces - on the 5th
floor balcony overlooking the base of Peak 8 on a startlingly warm (for
us) and sunny afternoon. While there, took an informal poll of a few of
Comcast’s new employees asking what they might to with their 25 shares
of stock: the consensus? Keep ‘em. A couple said, “Buy more.” Also,
we met the legendary producer Steve Friedman ... cool guy, great accomplishments. More to come?•