DIRECTV, Alcatel-Lucent jointly target the MDU service opportunity

DIRECTV is tuning into the idea that a multi dwelling units (MDU) existing copper wiring is a sound conduit to deliver a triple play package (video, broadband Internet and VoIP) to residential subscribers. The satellite service provider is making that dream a reality by combining its IPAdvantage satellite-based IP platform with Alcatel-Lucent's VDSL2 technology and multimedia professional services.

Serving as the proof of concept for the new alliance will be the Shelter Creek 1,296 unit condominium community in San Bruno, Calif. Based on what it learns in Shelter Creek, DIRECTV will apply the VDSL2 copper method in other existing MDU properties where rewiring buildings with new coax cable is not an option. Leveraging existing copper wiring also means less disruption to existing residents--a key concern amongst landlords and property owners.  

While not exactly an IPTV offering, DIRECTV IPAdvantage converts DIRECTV video signals into IP video packets to IP-enabled receivers over one home-run wire. Satellite TV and other related services are then delivered from a private "on property" head end to each customer's living unit. In addition to providing video services, DIRECTV's IP distribution platform supports voice, Internet and interactive services that can be packaged as either dual or triple play bundle service packages.

Cable may have always had the upper hand in targeting MDUs, but it's obvious that telcos (AT&T and Verizon) and satellite competitors such as DIRECTV want a piece of this potentially lucrative market. However, the segment won't be without some challenges. Given the diversity of U.S.-based MDU properties, DIRECTV will likely have to conduct an up-front assessment to determine if the existing copper can effectively support VDSL2.

For more:
- see the release here

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