We knew that Cablevision was involved in creating an iPad app that enables the viewing of TV content, but we didn’t know that the app would offer iPad owners a better experience than FIOS’ and Time Warner Cable’s offerings. Cablevision’s Optimum app lets you, from behind your own network at home, view your entire channel lineup directly from up to two iPads simultaneously, complete with program guide information, access to the company’s more than 2,000 VOD offerings with the rest coming this summer, while also letting you record and control your DVR directly from the app. After entering my Optimum account username and password, I was immediately able to access every Optimum channel that I subscribe to from my iPad, and after some quick buffering, video looked absolutely great. It doesn’t look like you’re able to currently watch any recorded video from your DVR, but that’s not such a big deal in my book. Cablevision told me that their app doesn’t use the internet to deliver video to your iPad, nor is the content streamed, rather it’s sent over the company’s network just as it works with your set-top box. If you are an Optimum customer that doesn’t have a cable modem, Optimum will provide an internet-blocked cable modem for free that will enable you to use the iPad app with a user-provider secure wireless router. Cablevision also said that they plan to deploy the same experience to other devices, so we anticipate an iPhone and Android app in the future. Check out some screenshots of the app in our gallery, and if you’re an Optimum cable customer, the app is available for free in the App Store. Press release after the break.
CABLEVISION’S NEW OPTIMUM APP DELIVERS THE FULL CABLE TELEVISION EXPERIENCE TO AN iPAD IN THE HOME
Customers Can Enjoy Cable Television Service Including Hundreds Of Channels, Video On Demand, Enhanced And Searchable Guide Information And DVR Controls On Their Tablet Device, Which Functions As A Television In The Home
Available At No Additional Cost To Existing Optimum Cable Television Customers
BETHPAGE, NY, April 2, 2011 – Cablevision Systems Corp. (NYSE: CVC) today announced the launch of the Optimum App for iPad, which allows its cable television customers to experience iO TV digital cable – including access to hundreds of channels and video on demand (VOD) – on an iPad in the home. The application delivers the full cable television experience to the tablet device, and allows the iPad to function as a television. Like all additional outlets, it is free to existing Optimum cable television customers.
In addition to approximately 300 live channels and access to VOD, the Optimum App for iPad integrates enhanced guide information that makes it easier than ever before for customers to find the content they already receive as part of their cable television subscription. Programming is fully searchable, including by genre, and the application includes the ability to schedule DVR recordings and manage previously-recorded content.
“This application allows the iPad to function as a television, delivering the full richness and diversity of our cable television service to a display device in the home,” said Tom Rutledge, Cablevision’s chief operating officer. “It gives our customers the additional flexibility and convenience of watching television throughout the home, in places where set-top boxes might not be ideal or even practical, like the kitchen, bathroom or work room. This is the future of Advanced Digital Cable televisions served with virtual set-top boxes, and just one of many digital displays we are going to be serving through a variety of applications,” Mr. Rutledge concluded.
Cablevision uses its secure and proprietary Advanced Digital Cable television network to deliver cable programming to customers for viewing on the Optimum App for iPad, and content is not delivered over the Internet. The application turns the iPad into an additional television, enabling Cablevision customers to view the same live programming and VOD content already being delivered to other TVs in the home as part of the service they have paid for. Cablevision has the right to distribute programming over its cable system to iPads configured in this way under its existing distribution agreements with programming providers. Cablevision has been serving customers with switched digital cable for more than five years. Advanced Digital Cable allows the company to switch in multiple digital formats, as its customers continue to buy the latest display devices. Customers do not need to have Internet access to use the Optimum App for iPad.
Cablevision plans to deploy additional applications that deliver the same experience to other tablets and display devices, functioning as televisions. The company plans to integrate remote control functionality into the Optimum App for iPad this summer.
Cablevision Systems Corporation (NYSE: CVC) is one of the nation’s leading media and entertainment companies. Its assets include cable television operations that provide industry-leading services to more than 3 million New York area households. A state-of- the-art cable system enables the company to offer a full suite of premier residential and business communications services that include its iO TV® digital television, Optimum Online® high-speed Internet, Optimum Voice® digital voice, Optimum WiFi® wireless Internet, and its Optimum Lightpath® integrated business communications solutions. Cablevision also delivers advanced video, voice and Internet services to more than 300,000 households in Colorado, Montana, Wyoming and Utah. Through Rainbow Media Holdings LLC, Cablevision operates several successful programming and entertainment businesses, including AMC, IFC, Sundance Channel, WE tv and IFC Entertainment. Cablevision serves the New York area with compelling local content through News 12 Networks, a local news leader; MSG Varsity, a suite of television and online services covering high school activities; and, Newsday Media Group, a business unit that includes Newsday, Long Island’s leading daily newspaper. The company also owns and operates Clearview Cinemas, which includes Manhattan’s famed Ziegfeld Theatre, a frequent and historic venue for film premieres and events.