Cordkillers 118 – Steam’s Stream Dream (w/ Jaime Ruiz-Avila)

How the FCC helped cablecos explain why they resist innovation, Apple might make its own original TV shows, HBO NOW FINALLY gets popular.

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CordKillers: Ep. 118 – Steam’s Stream Dream
Recorded: April 25 2016
Guest: Jaime Ruiz-Avila

Intro Video

Primary Target

  • Comcast will bring its Xfinity app to Roku and Samsung Smart TVs this year
    – Comcast announced its HTML5 Xfinity app is coming to Samsung Smart TVs
    – A custom app is coming to Roku.
    – Subscribers to Comcast’s Xfinity cable service can access the channel guide, cloud DVR, and live and on -demand TV.
    Comcast believes this shows the FCC does not need to mandate set-top box compatibility.
    – The FCC told the Verge the new app does not “integrate or search across Comcast content as well as other content consumers subscribe to.” 
  • Disney, CBS, Viacom worry FCC cable box proposal would do to TV what iTunes did to music
    – Several companies inl. Disney, CBS, Fox, A&E, Time Warner, Scripps and Viacom filed feedback to the FCC’s proposed rules to require MVNOs to support third-party cable boxes
    – Companies object that they would lose revenue if they can no longer control the order in which channels appear
    – particularly concerned that these new set-top boxes will offer up shows individually, instead of presenting entire channels as cable boxes
    – Worry about “commitments to secure and protect content”
    – Comcast made a separate filing
    – Added arguments are technical burdens to support the new boxes, might require more bandwidth
    – “In any event, at a minimum, the [FCC’s proposal] vastly understates the level of work, and associated costs, that would be necessary to implement its Set-Top Box Mandate,” it writes.

Signal Intelligence

  • Apple talking original content
    – Feature by Nicole Laporte on Fast Company
    – Apple held a private dinner at Sundance and heard pitches in LA in the weeks that followed.
    – Fast Company says it would be for an “exclusives” app on Apple TV
    – Two “lanes”
    – 1. Beats-driven programming meant to promote music
    – 2. Multiple original series.
    – Alibaba Pictures set up in Pasadena.
    – Run by Zhang Wei, former talk show host and Harvard MBA

Gear Up

Front Lines

Under Surveillance

Dispatches from the Front

Hey guys,

Just listened to last week’s show and was wondering if either of you have tried the Xbox One for its media options.

I am not sure how common this set up is for everybody but an Xbox with kinect, HDMI pass through for a cable box and a harmony remote let’s me easily access anything I want using the Xbox – One Guide.

The One Guide lays out suggestions for movies to rent or purchase, what is popular in most video apps like Netflix, Hulu, YouTube or if you chose to look at your cable provider’s channel guide will list categories such as live TV shows trending on Twitter.

What has really surprised me is that I recently realized how easy it is to be able to say “”””Xbox on”””” which will wake it up and turn on the TV and follow it with “”””watch ESPN”””” and it just finds the channel for me.  (No need to memorize #s) Or I can use a remote, a game pad or cell phone to control everything.

I know one of the features (that admittedly might bother some) is that the kinect will recognize when I’m sitting in front of the TV and have favorites/suggestions loaded based on my profile and the same based on my wife’s profile if she is watching TV.

If you guys have tried it out would love to hear your thoughts.




Hi Brian, Tom, Bryce and guest,

I know they are several months away but I was thinking about how I was going to be able to watch this summer’s Olympics. Since I cut the cord I have found ways to get some of the live TV I was missing but sports has been the hardest to find. This will be the first Olympics since ditching cable TV so I was wondering if you know if NBC makes the Olympics available to those of us without a cable box.

Thank you for making my commute enjoyable and educational. I’m happy to say I am one of your bosses.

Jennifer, Stuck in traffic on the Mass Pike




Hey gentlemen got to say something……. YOU JJEERRRRKKKKKSSSSS. You guys just had to say Animaniacs was on Netflix didn’t ya. I was dumb enough to watch the first episode AND NOW I CANT GET THE DAM ANIMANIACS THEME OUT OF MY HEAD AND WANT TO BINGE ON EVERY EPISODE phffft 😛 Jerks 😉 . Even after all these years I remembered the theme word for word, I missed that show. Keep up the awesome work

Robert E from Oklahoma  

The love affair is over. The sling streaming beta blacked out the blues Blackhawks game. I had to prove where I lived to get the channel. Sling is saying they are subject to the same blackout rules as everyone else. This is a lie since local dish and cable subscribers can watch. I got to watch the game earlier this week on Fox sports Midwest without issue. Maybe Playstation view is right for me. 



Bryce asked about netflix country availability:

That will do more than what you want, but it will do what you were talking about.



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