"TiVo Inc. (Nasdaq: TIVO) could eventually exit the set-top hardware business if it's successful with a new distribution strategy.
The idea is that TiVo would port its user interface and services to a range of hybrid QAM/IP video gateways and IP-only clients that are leased by cable operators and other pay-TV providers.
TiVo's approach, which differs from one being developed by Comcast Corp. (Nasdaq: CMCSA, CMCSK) for MSO-leased devices, centers on its Hardware Porting Kit (HPK), a porting and middleware layer that has already been licensed by several top set-top makers, including Pace plc , Cisco Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: CSCO), Samsung Corp. and Technicolor SA (Euronext Paris: TCH; NYSE: TCH). Still notably absent from this group is Google (Nasdaq: GOOG)-owned Motorola Mobility, which remains the largest U.S. supplier of set-top boxes. (See Comcast's Set-Top Accelerator Gains Traction , Operators Flock to Comcast's IP Set-Top Kit and Comcast's IP Set-Top Club Expands.)
TiVo's HPK is already central to several recent deployments with service providers. Some recent examples include U.K.-based operator Virgin Media Inc. (Nasdaq: VMED), which is running TiVo on Samsung and Cisco boxes, while Spain's ONO relies on TiVo-powered Cisco boxes. In the U.S., DirecTV Group Inc. (NYSE: DTV)'s new TiVo implementation is the result of the HPK. More recently, Mediacom Communications Corp. said it intends to market the XG1, a Pace-made gateway that bakes in TiVo's software and also sports six tuners and a Docsis 3.0 modem. (See Mediacom Goes With TiVo .) ..."
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