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NFL Sunday Ticket on DIRECTV – Week 10 Schedule

The only way for NFL fans to catch every game, every Sunday on their home TVs is with NFL Sunday Ticket, exclusively available from DIRECTV. NFL Sunday Ticket and DIRECTV are both available from Mid-America Satellite. Check back each week for the times and listings for Sunday’s games on NFL Sunday Ticket right here at the TV, Internet and Phone Blog.

Here’s the Sunday afternoon schedule for Week 10 of NFL action:

  • 1pm EDT
    • Kansas City Chiefs at Carolina Panthers – Channel 705
    • Houston Texans at Jacksonville Jaguars – Channel 706
    • Denver Broncos at New Orleans Saints – Channel 707
    • Los Angeles Rams at New York Jets – Channel 708
    • Atlanta Falcons at Philadelphia Eagles – Channel 709
    • Chicago Bears at Tampa Bay Buccaneers – Channel 710
    • Green Bay Packers at Tennessee Titans – Channel 711
    • Minnesota Vikings at Washington Redskins – Channel 712
  • 4:05pm EDT
    • Miami Dolphins at San Diego Chargers – Channel 713
  • 4:25pm EDT
    • San Francisco 49ers at Arizona Cardinals – Channel 714
    • Dallas Cowboys at Pittsburgh Steelers – Channel 715

Enjoy the games!

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NFL Sunday Ticket on DIRECTV – Week 6 Schedule

The only way for NFL fans to catch every game, every Sunday on their home TVs is with NFL Sunday Ticket, exclusively available from DIRECTV. NFL Sunday Ticket and DIRECTV are both available from Mid-America Satellite. Check back each week for the times and listings for Sunday’s games on NFL Sunday Ticket right here at the TV, Internet and Phone Blog.

Here’s the Sunday afternoon schedule for Week 6 of NFL action:

  • 1pm EDT
    • Jacksonville Jaguars at Chicago Bears – Channel 705
    • Pittsburgh Steelers at Miami Dolphins – Channel 706
    • Cincinnati Bengals at New England Patriots – Channel 707
    • Baltimore Ravens at New York Giants – Channel 708
    • Cleveland Browns at Tennessee Titans – Channel 709
    • San Francisco 49ers at Buffalo Bills – Channel 710
    • Los Angeles Rams at Detroit Lions – Channel 711
    • Carolina Panthers at New Orleans Saints – Channel 712
    • Philadelphia Eagles at Washington Redskins – Channel 713
  • 4:05pm EDT
    • Kansas City Chiefs at Oakland Raiders – Channel 714
  • 4:25pm EDT
    • Dallas Cowboys at Green Bay Packers – Channel 715
    • Atlanta Falcons at Seattle Seahawks – Channel 716

Enjoy the games!

Declining Landline Phone Usage Means Layoffs for CenturyLink

Citing the need to lower costs, Monroe, Louisiana based CenturyLink is cutting 3,000 jobs, meaning it is cutting between seven and eight percent of its total workforce. The reason? The decline in landline phone business, as many more customers are choosing to go entirely with their cell phones and leave home phone dedicated lines behind.

More from the Denver Post:

CenturyLink said it is seeking to first trim its headcount on a voluntary basis. Employees who take voluntary severance packages can participate in outplacement assistance programs.

Company spokesman Mark Molzen said most of the layoffs are expected to be done by Dec. 16.

CenturyLink, which acquired Denver’s Qwest in 2011, has been cutting staff locally. In 2011, the company employed 7,400 people in Colorado. Earlier this year, the company employed 5,300 in the state.

The company has gone prior rounds of job cuts. In August 2015, it announced its decision to cut 1,000 workers nationwide, which includedabout 150 in Colorado.

Though staff has shrunk, the company said that its TV business has grown. As of June 30, the company had 311,000 customers, up from 258,000 the prior year and up 9,000 from first quarter.

In August, CenturyLink said subscribers to its TV service Prism TV have grown with about 500,000 homes in the Denver area that can order the cable-like video service. The company also has made its high-speed gigabit internet service available to about 160,000 homes in the Denver area.

Changes in technology continue to hurt the legacy business of major telecom providers. As long as there is a need for high speed internet providers, though, they should be okay.

Canadian Company Gets into the High Speed Internet Game in Connecticut

The fastest internet speeds in the state of Connecticut don’t come from any of the usual suspects, with high speed internet providers being left behind, and no, it’s not Google Fiber coming to bring gigabit speeds to the Constitution State. Instead, Atlantic Broadband, a Canadian company, will be the first ultra high speed provider for Connecticut, with more than 37,000 homes and businesses in Eastern Connecticut receiving the service that launched last week.

More from the Hartford Courant:

Bringing so-called gigabit service to Connecticut is an important step as state officials seek to establish the high-speed service in the state, insisting it will boost business and economic development, speeding up streaming, video and online transactions.

David Isenberg, president of Atlantic Broadband, said the high-speed service “will transform the way people communicate, work and play online” and could have a positive impact on the local economy and attract new businesses.

A “gig” refers to internet speeds of one gigabit-per-second, with one gig about 100 times faster than the average household Internet speed. A gigabit is equal to 1,000 megabits.

Nationally, internet speeds average about nine megabits per second, according to Comptroller Kevin Lembo, who is working with state Consumer Counsel Elin Swanson Katz to broaden high-speeed service in Connecticut.

Atlantic Broadband, a subsidiary of Cogeco Communications Inc., a cable operator in Quebec and Ontario, says customers may download a two-hour HD movie in 32 seconds and send a large file 250 megabits in size to the office in 40 seconds.

Residential service costs $89.99 a month and businesses pay $249.99 a month.

Paul Cianelli, president of the New England Cable and Telecommunications Association, called Atlantic Broadband’s new service the “first foray” in Connecticut into high-speed residential internet service.

The major players in the US, such as Comcast and Charter, are not in danger yet, but the more that companies like this make inroads and offer superior services, the more people who are already looking to get away from the big cable providers—particularly those who have already, or want to, get rid of their cable TV service, will be ready to cut that cord.

NFL Sunday Ticket on DIRECTV – Week 2 Schedule

The only way for NFL fans to catch every game, every Sunday on their home TVs is with NFL Sunday Ticket, exclusively available from DIRECTV. NFL Sunday Ticket and DIRECTV are both available from Mid-America Satellite. Check back each week for the times and listings for Sunday’s games on NFL Sunday Ticket right here at the TV, Internet and Phone Blog.

Here’s the Sunday afternoon schedule for Week 2 of NFL action:

  • 1pm EDT
    • Baltimore Ravens at Cleveland Browns – Channel 705
    • Tennessee Titans at Detroit Lions – Channel 706
    • Kansas City Chiefs at Houston Texans – Channel 707
    • Miami Dolphins at New England Patriots – Channel 708
    • Cincinnati Bengals at Pittsburgh Steelers – Channel 709
    • San Francisco 49ers at Carolina Panthers – Channel 710
    • New Orleans Saints at New York Giants – Channel 711
    • Dallas Cowboys at Washington Redskins – Channel 712
  • 4:05pm EDT
    • Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Arizona Cardinals – Channel 713
    • Seattle Seahawks at Los Angeles Rams – Channel 714
  • 4:25pm EDT
    • Indianapolis Colts at Denver Broncos – Channel 715
    • Atlanta Falcons at Oakland Raiders – Channel 716
    • Jacksonville Jaguars at San Diego Chargers – Channel 717

Enjoy the games!

High Speed Internet Infrastructure Could Bring Opportunity to Flint, MI

The city of Flint, MI has been in the national news for reasons that aren’t the best, the town often used as an example of the decay of the American manufacturing economy and the increase in poverty and unemployment. Now, though, the city is taking steps to change that image, with the city teaming with Kettering University to bring new high speed internet infrastructure to Flint and surrounding areas.

More from Mlive.com:

New internet applications could improve health care, education, public safety and advanced manufacturing, said John Geske, department head and professor of Computer Science at Kettering University.

There could be possibilities of street lights and traffic lights controlled by high-speed internet.

Kettering University and the city of Flint are at the forefront of innovation throughout the country through the national US Ignite initiative.

“(The initiative is trying to bring) high-speed internet into communities so these communities have the ability to develop some really next-generation applications that might have really high societal value,” Geske said. “It’s a very big deal. We’ve been really successful. Kettering has been really successful in leading the community to this high-generation, high-speed networking.”

This will not change the high-speed internet service available to homes throughout Flint, at least not at first, but will lead to more ability to use the internet in public spaces such as schools and libraries. High speed internet infrastructure will also likely attract start-up tech firms and other companies who will be attracted by the tech-friendly environment.

NHL Playoffs to Air on USA Network This Year

Exposure to the NHL has steadily grown after a steep drop-off with the addition of the Winter Classic and other outdoor games, as well as the prevalence of hockey on broadcast television via weekend games on NBC. Since NBC holds the rights to the NHL in the United States, they are able to place professional hockey games on any of their cable television networks as well as on their main broadcast network.

In order to bring more exposure to the playoffs this year, NHL games will appear not only on NBC, NHL Network, and NBC Sports Network (formerly Versus and Outdoor Life Network), but on the more popular USA Network as well. USA has a lot of loyal viewership through its broadcasting of original hour long series and WWE Raw every Monday; it’s likely NBC hopes that these loyal viewers will see promotions for upcoming games and stay tuned.

Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo!’s Puck Daddy blog thinks it’s a good move:

“But let’s be real: USA Network has the viewership — sixth-highest rated cable network in last week’s ratings — and the properties that could be really valuable in promoting the playoffs. Unless you don’t think a preview of a first-round Game 7 before the main event on MONDAY NIGHT RAW wouldn’t be beneficial.

Smart move on its surface for the NHL. Now, how do we get Henrik Lundqvist to guest on “Suits”?”

Hockey is still well behind Major League Baseball, NBA basketball, and especially NFL football when it comes to its position in popularity amongst the four major team sports in the US, and NASCAR and Major League Soccer are threatening to take its place in the Big Four. NBC’s purchase of NHL rights has been good for the sport—ESPN always treated the NHL like a second-class citizen, and with NBCSN’s weekly broadcasts, there are way more national games available to fans than ever before. Here’s hoping the move to expose the sport more on the most popular cable channel does even more to keep the hockey fires alive in the USA.

Can Apple Change Cable TV Forever?

Ever since the prevalence of Netflix streaming services, and devices like SMART TVs and the Roku box, people in the entertainment and technology industries have been talking about the downfall of satellite TV and cable TV providers. Now, Apple is also getting into the game, with a rumored service supposedly coming live in fall of 2015. How exactly this service will look is not yet determined by outside observers, but it will probably go one of two ways:

  1. Bundles of channels or programming will be available through iTunes for viewing on TVs and other devices
  2. Apple will create its own cable bundle working with content providers and offer these channels via broadband connection

Whichever way they go, it’s unlikely to “blow up” the current establishment, according to the Money Blog at CNN:

“A number of companies are already working on selling “virtual cable” — channel packages that don’t require a visit from a cable guy. These streaming services don’t blow up the cable bundle, but they make it more convenient and portable, and in some cases smaller. Apple would be the biggest entrant to the market yet.

The Wall Street Journal reported Monday night that Apple would like to launch such a service “this fall,” and is in negotiations with major channel owners to make it happen.”

CNN’s point is that all of this has been done before, and has yet to really cost cable TV providers any money or business. Much of the reason for this is that most cable television consumers get their broadband internet from the same provider that gives them their cable television package: often at a discount for bundling services.

Apple has been ahead of the game in a number of respects: iTunes changed the way music is bought and paid for, and helped save the music industry when it became easier to pirate music than to purchase it for many savvy internet users. Cable TV hasn’t gotten to that point yet, though, so it’s probably going to take a lot longer to change.

Netflix Emmy Nominations Show the Changing Face of Cable TV

The face of cable television, or at least how people watch cable television programming, is definitely changing. One of the major indicators of this is the mainstream media acceptance of shows developed specifically for Netflix, shows that only air on the streaming service and not on channels aired by cable television providers. That acceptance has reached a critical level with Emmy nominations for House of Cards, an original show developed for Netflix, and for Arrested Development, a show that once aired on Fox but whose last season was also created for the streaming service.

More from the Washington Post:

The move by Netflix to produce its own shows has upset the equation, especially now that it has made good on its goal of developing high-quality series in the model of premium cable channels such as HBO. Many analysts expect the Emmy nominations for Netflix to encourage more companies to produce their own shows and prompt those already experimenting — such as Amazon.com, which is developing several new series — to expand their ambitions.

“It is a watershed moment for video content,” technology industry analyst Carl Howe of Yankee Group said. “We’re now starting to see awards that don’t pay attention to how content is distributed. . . . What the awards people are saying is: We don’t care anymore.”

Cable channels had their own breakthrough in 1999, when HBO’s “The Sopranos” became the first series not carried on broadcast television to be nominated for best drama.

So new is Internet television that there is no standardized tool for measuring viewership, as Nielsen ratings do for shows delivered through traditional channels. The average Netflix subscriber watches 87 minutes of television on the Web site per day, more than on any cable network, according to BTIG Research, though Netflix has declined to release figures for how many people watch its original content.

The news is not all bad for cable operators. Many of the firms that deliver cable television also deliver broadband Internet through the same wires. Falling demand for traditional television may correspond with rising demand for data.

Cable providers will be able to survive because they are also often the high speed internet providers for their customers as well. But what about DISH Network and DIRECTV, who do not bundle internet with their pay-TV? Only time will tell.

Google May Carry Cable TV Channels Online

Google is working on a way to bring you cable channels the same way you get your email: through a normal internet connection. The company is trying to license cable channels in order to challenge entrenched cable and satellite TV providers like Charter Communications and DIRECTV. While no deals are imminent, the fact that Google is a powerhouse that tends to get its way has some cable and satellite companies scared.

More from the New York Times:

Google, an advertising company at its core, has tried to make a dent in the television business before. Previous talks with channel owners in 2011 went nowhere. An attempt at an automated TV ad-buying system was shut down last year. Broadband in the meantime has continued to become more popular and more widely available, spurring interest in alternatives to traditional television distribution.

Google’s renewed push was first reported by The Wall Street Journal Tuesday afternoon. Intel is trying to create a similar over-the-top service, but it has run into roadblocks set up by Time Warner Cable and other incumbent television distributors. These include contracts between existing distributors and some channel owners that prohibit the channels from being licensed to new competitors like Intel. An Intel spokesman declined to comment on Tuesday.

Another challenge involves channel owners like the Walt Disney Company and Viacom, who could stand to benefit or suffer greatly from the potential service, depending on how it is developed. Some owners doubt that there is much of a market for cable via the Internet in the first place, and they are content with the three methods of distribution they have today: cable companies like Comcast, the satellite providers DirecTV and Dish Network, and the fiber optic providers Verizon FiOS and AT&T U-verse.

All it takes, though, is one major company with a lot of valuable channels—ESPN, perhaps?—to agree to work with Google, and the whole landscape of the cable television industry could change.