Cablevision, an American cable television service provider serving New York and other nearby states, has released its own iPad app that offers live streaming of approximately 300 channels as well as video on demand programming. Cablevision’s free Optimum for iPad debuted in the App Store over the weekend.
Cablevision joins Time Warner Cable, another American cable company, in offering an iPad app that offers live streaming television to its customers. Time Warner Cable, however, only offers a limited number of channels within its TWCable TV app and had been forced to remove some channels following complaints from media companies last week. Comparatively, Cablevision makes a customer’s entire cable television subscription lineup available, essentially turning the iPad into another television within a customer’s home.
Cablevision apparently hopes to stave off complaints like those received by Time Warner Cable by stating up front in its press release that its existing agreements with programming providers allow live streaming in this way since it is not done over the open internet but only through Cablevision service and hardware:
Cablevision uses its secure and proprietary Advanced Digital Cable television network to deliver cable programming to customers for viewing on the Optimum App for iPad, and content is not delivered over the Internet. The application turns the iPad into an additional television, enabling Cablevision customers to view the same live programming and VOD content already being delivered to other TVs in the home as part of the service they have paid for. Cablevision has the right to distribute programming over its cable system to iPads configured in this way under its existing distribution agreements with programming providers. Cablevision has been serving customers with switched digital cable for more than five years. Advanced Digital Cable allows the company to switch in multiple digital formats, as its customers continue to buy the latest display devices. Customers do not need to have Internet access to use the Optimum App for iPad.
Here’s to hoping Cablevision’s approach works and that other cable service providers (we’re looking at you, Comcast) follow suit!