Cable Operators

RS-DVR Set for Summer Debut?

5/24/2009 2:00 AM Eastern

Cablevision Systems could launch its long-awaited Remote Storage-Digital Video Recorder this summer and is talking to programmers regarding the controversial product, according to an analyst report last Tuesday.

Sanford Bernstein cable and satellite analyst Craig Moffett wrote that during a meeting with several top executives at the company, chief operating officer Tom Rutledge said that the RS-DVR could hit the street in the summer.

“The law of the land in our area is that network DVRs are legal,” Rutledge said, according to Moffett's report. “We have won a case versus the copyright holders. We'll be rolling out our first product based on that later this summer. We'll move to centralized storage.”

Cablevision won an appeal last year, reversing a lower court decision that said the RS-DVR violated programmers' copyrights. Those programmers had pledged to take the appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the nation's highest court has yet to decide whether to take the case.

According to Moffett, Rutledge hinted that a compromise could be worked out with programmers.

“We're having discussions with the copyright holders that can make the network DVR model work in their best interests,” Rutledge said according to the report. Cablevision declined to comment beyond the report.

September