Cisco Partners w/ Charter Com. for WorldBox Initiative

Charter Communications Inc. a leading broadband communications company, and the fourth-largest cable operator in the United States has announced a new partnership with Cisco Systems Inc. It was announced in a press conference on Tuesday at Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2015 in Las Vegas, where the companies unveiled a new cloud-based video delivery service. The service is called “WorldBox”.

The companies outlined the network architecture for the service, which will use thin clients powered by cloud-driven user interface (UI) to deliver an array of new features. The WorldBox interface and program guide will work on any deployed set-top box in Charter’s footprint as well as on any connected device, including smartphones, tablets, and a Roku set-top box.

John Chambers, chairman and CEO at Cisco said, “Cisco greatly values our enduring partnership with Charter. We are proud to join Charter today to showcase the leading edge IP and cloud-based video solutions they are developing, and the Cisco products at their core. Charter’s new video solution, featuring cloud-driven video experiences offered across many devices will be a huge win for Charter subscribers.”

Charter has already developed two versions of the Worldbox that are on offer, HD and an HD-DVR. Both models contain, dual IP/QAM capabilities, configurable up to 16 tuners, 1 GB of RAM, 16×4 DOCSIS 3.0 cable modems, USB connections to enable future applications, and a terabyte of storage on the HD-DVR

Tom Rutledge, the president and CEO of Charter Communications was quoted as saying, “Cisco shares Charter’s vision of the future of network architecture, where our network’s intelligence is located in the cloud rather than in devices at the edge. We are excited that Cisco will be a key supplier of the Charter Worldbox, and that their Downloadable Security Solution and Digital Rights Management solutions will be part of Charter’s next-generation, cloud-based video solution.”

Cisco will supply the cloud-based security suite, including downloadable security solution (DCAS) for set-top boxes, and seamless digital rights management (DRM). As well as continue to supply CableCARD boxes until Charter migrates all current and acquired systems to the downloadable security solution.

The pair expect to start deployments of the Worldbox and the new downloadable security system in select markets in early this year.