Qwest retunes its television stance in Colorado

Qwest (NYSE: Q) may be one of the forgotten-about telco tv market pioneers in its previous life as US West--an effort it shut down in late 2008 with the closing of its VDSL-based Choice TV product--but it appears that the service provider is taking another look at video.

As reported in the Denver Post, Qwest is talking with Colorado legislators about having the video-franchising process handled at the state versus local level. Today, Qwest and other would-be video providers have to apply for video franchise approval on a municipality basis.

"We've started talking with legislators--especially given the new members that we have up there--about video franchising and what could be done to facilitate competitive entry in the cable business," said Qwest state president Chuck Ward.

This is not the first time Qwest has lobbied to get the video rules changed. In 2007, Qwest had been advocating a statewide video franchise bill that eventually died in a House committee. Not long after the bill died, current Qwest CEO Ed Mueller put Qwest's video plans in mothballs so he could deal with more pressing issues like the company's financials.

Unlike its RBOC compatriots AT&T (NYSE: T) and Verizon (NYSE: VZ), Qwest opted to not deliver a video product outside of its joint relationship with satellite provider DirecTV.

While it's hard to speculate what exactly will be Qwest's next video move, it's not hard to imagine the service provider moving into IPTV after its new parent CenturyLink (NYSE: CTL) takes over next year. CenturyLink has been rolling out its Prism IPTV service in a number of select markets.     

For more:
- The Denver Post has this article

Related articles:
Qwest finally phasing out Choice TV
Qwest refloats video franchising proposal to Colorado lawmakers
IPTV growth in CenturyLink's future
CenturyLink to bring IPTV to Florida's Collier County

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