The outlook for North American cable Multiple System Operators (MSOs) is bright. A commitment to triple-play services (video, voice, and data) combined with declining CapEx should provide a solid foundation. The focus MSOs have on free cash flow, however, continues to strain their CapEx budgets.
Continued competition from direct broadcast satellite (DBS) providers and aggressive deployment of telecommunications FTTx (Fiber to the node, curb, building, home, and more) services remain key concerns. In addition, over-the-top web service providers pose a threat to DBS operators, as potential exists for customers to reduce cable services in favor of online options. These factors are accelerating the MSOsí adoption of new services. Industry roadmaps are well established around triple-play services such as network-based video on demand, faster broadband, and IP-based "Connected Home" that reduce subscriber churn and increase growth. Commercial services are an important growth opportunity for MSOs, and several are focusing their resources here.
Outside North America, cable operators and IPTV providers—whether using coaxial, DSL, or fiber technologies—will focus on building practical operating environments, selecting business strategies and appropriate supporting technologies to enable successful positioning, deployment, and operations.