Verizon is planning a set top box upgrade that could notably deliver the way the telco delivers TV to its FiOS TV customers. Documents filed with the FCC and first spotted by Light Reading indicate that the new set top box is al-IP and does not use QAM like Verizon’s existing TV delivery efforts. A source also tells the website that the new set top box box is meant to be a replacement client set-top for Verizon’s Media Server product, which powers Verizon’s FiOS Quantum TV service.
The documents indicate that the new set top box will integrate technology from OnCue, which Verizon acquired from Intel in early 2014.
The set top would delivery traditional content and streaming video options using an entirely new interface from Verizon’s existing QAM-based set tops. Code-named “Mallard,” the new all IP approach would transmit only the content a subscriber is watching, whereas the older QAM approach broadcasts all content simultaneously. A full IP shift would theoretically lower costs for Verizon if deployed broadly.
Variety offers a little more detail, several sources telling the website that Verizon plans to start testing the new boxes with some subscribers as early as this summer, and should bring it to market by the third or fourth quarter of this year. However, the sources note that as with any technology launch, that deployment window could change.
Those interested can find a little more detail on Verizon’s new IPTV set top in this thread in our Verizon FiOS forum.