NCTA says toodles to Integration Ban, 'an unnecessary tech mandate from the late 1990s'
FierceCable.com reports that with the FCC set to finally lift on Friday the “Integration Ban” that required cable companies to include CableCard devices in their set-tops, the National Cable Telecommunications Association (NCTA) posted a statement on its website leaving little ambiguity about how it feels about regulation.
“The Integration Ban was an unnecessary technology mandate from the late 1990s that cost billions of dollars with no real consumer benefit,” the NCTA said in the post. “We’d like to take a moment to recognize how the repeal of this ban helps cable customers by lowering costs of equipment, saving energy, and clearing the way for better TV innovation.”
As of the NCTA’s count in early November, only around 618,000 CableCards have been issued by MSOs so far to enable customers with set-tops purchased at retail to use them with their cable subscription. Around 54 million boxes leased by cable companies have been deployed with integrated CableCard wherewithal. The cable industry has always questioned why its members had to put this wherewithal into their own set-tops.