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CEA, NCTA Offer New Cable TV Terms

7/29/2003 08:30:00 AM Eastern

New York - The National Cable and Telecommunications Association and the CEA have established new terminology to indicate the capabilities of digital television sets with integrated cable compatibility that do not require separate set-top cable boxes.

The terms were disclosed last week to the Federal Communications Commission in a letter that also updated the Commission on progress in the establishment of a two-way interactive plug-and-play cable interoperability agreement. Under the new terminology agreement, the two associations said that when the two-way interoperability agreement is reached, sets with interactive functionality will be labeled 'Interactive Digital Cable Ready.'

Another new term for a digital TV set capable of displaying one-way programming services, including premium channels, is 'Digital Cable Ready.' Such sets require smart cards – called Point of Deployment (POD) cards -- that will be supplied by cable TV operators to unlock scrambled channels.

However, under the new terms, the POD name has been changed to 'CableCARDs.'

In the letter, the trade groups urged the FCC to adopt as soon as possible the one-way digital-TV-set agreement reached last December between the two industries.

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