Industry Leaders Join to Promote ‘Net Via Cable’

Major players from the cable and computer sectors joined together today to create the Cable Broadband Forum (CBF) in an effort to boost the industry standing and deployment of cable broadband technology and services.

The Forum’s board members will include executives from MediaOne, TCI.NET, Comcast Corp., and @Home Network.

Other companies supporting the coalition include 3Com, Bay Networks, Cisco, Digital, Intel, Lucent, Microsoft, Motorola, Rockwell, Sun Microsystems, and Time Warner Cable, among others.

According to a CBF statement released today, cable-connected Internet users have increased to 200,000 in the past 18 months, generating $100 million in new revenue, and the online services business is expected to triple by year’s end.

“The cable industry and its hardware and software partners believe that
cable is the best information and entertainment delivery system in the world today, and it’s offered to our customers at an unbeatable price,” said Board Chairman Tom Cullen, vice president of internet services for MediaOne, in a statement announcing the Forum today.

“We want Internet users everywhere to know of its availability and to understand its benefits, and cable operators to realize the growth and profit from this additional revenue stream.”

In addition to promoting residential customer awareness of the emerging technology, the CBF said it also seeks recognition among businesses in promoting cable-provided Internet services as the preferred delivery method for virtual private networks, intranets and extranets, electronic commerce and videoconferencing.

The alliance also aims to encourage MSOs, OEMs, and VARs to collaborate on the promotion of broadband technologies.

“Everyone wins,” said Board President Robert R. Davenport III, senior vice president and chief operating officer of TCI.NET. “Cable operators are able to enjoy a new and significant incremental revenue stream. Customers enjoy a product that not only offers a superior price/performance value, but also always-on connectivity and unequaled speed. And, high-speed Internet service is but the first of many services we can offer across this platform.”

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