At Cox Communications regional San Diego headquarters, Sam Attisha said, “I’ll be back” into his TV remote control. Attisha, who is the senior vice president and region manager for Cox Communications in California, was displaying their Contour 2 TV guide technology at the San Diego headquarters.
When he said that, an icon for film “The Terminator” popped up on the screen, complete with user reviews, recommendations for similar films and list of the cast. The schedule for when the iconic Arnold Schwarzenegger sci-fi movie was to air in recent future was also displayed together with a button to order the movie immediately on demand.
The technology makes it easy to find what to watch. This technology is part of the company’s strategy to stop the trend of users cutting the cord. In 2013, the cable industry saw the first decline in the number of video subscribers, although that was a small drop. Since then, the trend of cord cutting has accelerated greatly, as many users started to explore over the top internet alternatives like Hulu and Netflix.
In the year 2015, about a million cable users cut the cord, leading to one percent decline in the total number of pay TV subscribers. Yet again, loss of video subscribers does not mean that users are abandoning cable TV providers on the whole. It means that the subscribers of internet TV are on the rise. As per Ian Olgeirson, a senior analyst with SNL Kagan, “The broadband pie continues to expand, and not only is it expanding, but cable companies continue to take share from telecommunications companies.”
Cox Communications does not provide the details on subscriber numbers, but they are believed to be the largest pay TV provider in San Diego County. Cox has faced much competition from Google Fiber and AT&T recently, and it is reported that Google Fiber is in exploratory talks to introduce high-speed optic fiber internet services in San Diego. However, Google Fiber has put their expansion plans on hold, as they are exploring alternatives for the costly job of getting fiber from the streets to homes.
Cox has been providing GigaBlast fiber optic internet service to some of the new housing developments in the area. The service is capable of offering 1Gbps download speeds to the users. Cox is also planning to increase the speed of their existing coaxial cable network making use of Docsis 3.1 technology, but the timeline for this network upgrade is not yet clear.