CableLabs Helps Rogers Cablesystems Establish Cable Equipment Test Centre
Louisville, Colo., May 22, 1996—Cable Television Laboratories, Inc., (CableLabs) will assist Rogers Cablesystems Limited in establishing a cable television equipment test laboratory in Toronto, Canada, this summer.
The goal of the new laboratory, called the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) Test Centre, is to evaluate currently available, off-the-shelf equipment from cable suppliers with an eye to determining if the hardware meets vendor-established specifications.
Brian James, formerly director of advanced television testing with CableLabs, will manage the laboratory for Rogers Cablesystems as TAC Test Centre vice president.
CableLabs engineers will continue to perform evaluations and tests of equipment exclusively in the research-and-development phase.
CableLabs President and CEO Dr. Richard R. Green noted that the creation of the TAC Test Centre fulfills one of the cable industry's objectives that had been suggested when CableLabs was established in 1988. "CableLabs and Rogers are very willing to work with the equipment suppliers in establishing this Test Centre and in gaining their confidence that this test process will benefit our members and the vendors� bottom lines," Green said.
Nick Hamilton-Piercy, senior vice president of engineering and technology at Rogers Cablesystems Limited, which is based in Toronto, said the TAC Test Centre will follow a "well-disciplined process"� to ensure objectivity. Testing is voluntary on the part of vendors. Vendors will be informed of what type of equipment will be evaluated, and asked whether they would like their equipment to be included.
James stressed that CableLabs' member companies will have an active role in determining what evaluations the TAC Test Centre performs and their priority. "The membership, through the TAC, will decide what equipment is tested," James said. "This facility is designed to benefit all of CableLabs' members, and they all will be represented."
James added that CableLabs members are being polled to find out what tests they would like to see performed first. James added: "Then we must establish testing procedures before we actually perform the first evaluations."
"We are anticipating a two-way flow of information on the effectiveness of current off-the-shelf cable equipment," James said. "While we certainly will be evaluating equipment independently in our facility, we also are hoping to work with MSOs to use their test information on products. That way equipment of interest to all member companies would be evaluated only once rather than a number of times at different MSOs," James said.
CableLabs is a research and development consortium of cable television system operators representing more than 85% of the cable subscribers in the United States, 70% of the subscribers in Canada, and between five and 10% of cable subscribers in Mexico. CableLabs plans and funds research and development projects that will help cable companies take advantage of future opportunities and meet future challenges in the telecommunications industry. It also transfers relevant technologies to member companies and to the industry. In addition, CableLabs acts as a clearinghouse to provide information on current and prospective technological developments that are of interest to the cable industry.
Rogers Cablesystems, Canada's largest cable network operator, provides high quality entertainment, information and communications services to approximately 2.5 million customers in Ontario and British Columbia. Its hybrid fiber-coaxial network is ideally suited for delivering interactive products and services that require significant bandwidth. The company also owns and operates 140 video stores (Rogers Video).
About CableLabs: Cable Television Laboratories (www.cablelabs.com) was founded in 1988 by members of the cable television industry. A non-profit research and development consortium, CableLabs delivers innovations that enable cable operators to be the providers of choice in their markets. Cable operators from around the world are members. CableLabs maintains additional web sites at www.cablenet.org.
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