Sony has made an agreement with US cable companies over producing a television with an integrated cable decoder – but it’s not something that is likely to make it over to the UK any time soon.
The Japanese electronics giant has entered into a ‘memorandum of understanding’ with Comcast, Time Warner Cable Inc, Cox Communications, Charter Communications Inc, Cablevision Systems Corp and Bright House Networks according to the National Cable & Telecommunications Association.
Essentially what has been termed as ‘cable-ready’ televisions is a plan to do away with the set top box that cable companies currently utilise to deliver their fare – meaning the consumer can plug their cable directly into their Sony branded television.
However, both common sense and industry sources are already suggesting that it’s an idea that may not fly with a tech savvy UK audience, at least in the short term.
Firstly, there has been little made of the potential complication around updating firmware for multiple cable companies’ and the Sony hardware, and who is ultimately responsible for this.
Secondly, the UK audience’s increasing take-up of personal video recorder systems like cable provider Virgin Media’s V+, or the satellite version Sky + means that Sony would probably have to consider integrating a PVR as well as a cable decoder.
Ultimately it comes down to cost, and whether the consumer would be willing to invest in a TV, cable subscription and the cost of a PVR as well in one block.