April 11, 2014
An expanded data services offering and U.S. cable businesses-and a little help from Canadian cable operations as well - drove up Cogeco Cable profits by 18 percent in the second quarter, the company reported. Overall profit in the quarter was up 18 percent, to $55.3 million, and net profit climbed from $51 million to $55 million year-over-year. Revenue rose 13 percent to $445 million. The company credited the revenue increases to a 2.3 percent jump in the Canadian cable services segment; a 14.2 percent hike in American cable services and a whopping 98.4 percent rise in the enterprise service segment.
Cogeco, in an earnings press release, cited "recent acquisitions (Atlantic Broadband and PEER 1), the favorable foreign exchange rates compared to the same period of last year as well as the improvement in the Canadian cable services segment" as reasons why adjusted EBITDA improved by 13.2 percent to $202.9 million for the quarter and by 26.3 percent to $405.8 million for the first half of the year. "We've remained very diligent with our cost management, which has helped contribute to the strong performance across all our segments and helped maintain the operating margin over the last quarter to a satisfying level," President-CEO Louis Audet said in the press release. "Fluctuations in foreign exchange rates have furthermore positively impacted our operating results and we have revised our 2014 financial guidelines as a result." Cogeco, he added, remains "on a solid path towards reaching our indebtedness leverage ratio objectives by August 2015." Fierce Cable
Aereo says its groundbreaking cloud-based antenna and DVR technology using Google Chromecast will launch May 29. Aereo members and consumers in active Aereo markets will be able to download (or update) the Aereo app for Android in the Google Play store. Aereo CEO and Founder Chet Kanojia made today's announcement at Fast Company's Innovation Uncensored conference in New York City. "The way people watch and experience television is changing and Google is a pioneer in providing consumers with more choice and flexibility in how they access and experience that media," says Aereo CEO and founder Chet Kanojia. "We're excited that Aereo will be Google Cast Ready this May. Consumers deserve more options and alternatives in how they watch television and our team is committed to providing consumers with the best experience possible using Aereo's innovative cloud technology."
To use Aereo's technology with Chromecast, consumers must download the Aereo app for Android in the Google Play store; set up a Chromecast device with the television and launch Aereo. The "cast" icon will appear in the app. Using Aereo's technology, consumers can pause, rewind and fast-forward any program that they are watching live or save a program for future viewing. Aereo's technology works with compatible 'smart' devices from tablets to phones to laptop computers. Aereo is now supported on iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch. The Aereo app for Android, now in beta, is available for download for devices running the Android operating system version 4.1 or higher. Aereo is also supported on Chrome for Mac and Chrome for Windows, Safari, Internet Explorer 9, Firefox, Opera Software, AppleTV (via AirPlay) and ROKU platforms.
Aereo membership begins at $8 per month, for access to the cloud-based antenna/DVR technology and 20 hours of DVR storage. For an additional $4 per month, consumers can upgrade their membership and receive 60 hours of DVR storage. Consumers who join Aereo get their first of month of access for free. Aereo is available now to consumers in these metropolitan areas: New York, Boston, Atlanta, Miami, Houston, Dallas, Detroit, Baltimore, Cincinnati, San Antonio and Austin. Aereo says it plans to launch in additional cities throughout 2014. TV NewsCheck
Facebook is performing its version of spring cleaning. The social network says it is bolstering its News Feed to cut back on spammy content or posts begging for Likes. Facebook says the changes target three types of News Feed posts: links that feature spam, content such as photos that are frequently circulated and updates that feature "like-baiting," or urging users to Like a post. "Many of these stories are published by Pages that deliberately try and game News Feed to get more distribution than they normally would," reads a post from Facebook software engineer Erich Owens and product manager Chris Turitzin. Facebook says publishers who engage in these types of posts will "see their distribution decrease over the next few months." Associated Press
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