Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on February 16, 2016 at 10:04 am
By Stacy Fuller, AT&T Vice President of Federal Regulatory
In the set-top box debate that has erupted, there is a clear and widely supported desire to give consumers an alternative to leased set-top boxes. Everyone wants consumers to have more choices, and we are moving in that direction.
Apps from pay-TV providers are now available alongside apps from streaming services on more than 450 million consumer-owned devices. Our customers can already use AT&T/DIRECTV apps on phones, tablets, game consoles and televisions today, and we intend to accelerate that vision in our drive to mobilize video. Finding an alternative to the set-top box and creating more paths to innovation is a goal I believe everyone can get behind.
There are also a couple of other areas in which I think everyone agrees.
First, whichever way we pivot, it has to be towards a platform that protects consumer privacy. Whatever solution we choose, the rules protecting consumers’ data should not vary depending on what company controls the device they use to access our services. Second, we want to encourage more growth in minority and niche programming, not less. We must ensure that the minority programming that exists today can be easily found tomorrow. If such programming is moved to page 3 (or page 30) of the new Google video search, what impact will that have on those programmers and their future?