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No penalty for Comcast if merger with Time Warner Cable fails

Comcast negotiated an easy escape hatch if regulators put too much heat on the $45.2 billion merger with Time Warner Cable, according to a regulatory filing Thursday.

According to the S4 filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on Thursday, Comcast will not owe Time Warner Cable a breakup fee if the deal falls through due to regulatory issues. The filing also indicated that Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus, who had only been on the job as CEO for two months before the merger was announced, will receive an $80 million severance package should the deal be completed … Read more

Comcast-Time Warner Cable deal faces probe from US states

Comcast will now have to deal with US states as well as the US Justice Department if it expects to win approval to buy Time Warner Cable.

Florida is part of a multistate group investigating the proposed merger to make sure if doesn't run afoul of antitrust laws, the Florida state attorney general's office told CNET on Wednesday.

"We are part of a multistate group reviewing the proposed transaction along with the U.S. DOJ Antitrust Division," the Florida state attorney general's office said to CNET in an e-mailed statement. "The matter is also … Read more

Why a Comcast merger could be good for TWC customers

Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus thinks the $45.2 billion megamerger with Comcast is a win for Time Warner Cable subscribers.

Speaking at the Deutsche Bank Media, Internet & Telecom Conference in Palm Beach, Fla., earlier this week, Marcus called the deal a "dream combination" that allows the companies to "innovate at a rapid pace."

I know what you're thinking: Of course he likes this deal. His company is getting bought out for $45.2 billion. And Marcus, who is paid in excess of $10 million a year, is the guy who spearheaded this … Read more

TiVo's European push tallies 2.5 million subscribers

TiVo has built a somewhat large base in Europe, the company announced on Thursday.

The number of people subscribing to TiVo service in Europe has surpassed 2.5 million subscribers, TiVo said on Thursday. TiVo currently partners with pay-TV providers Com Hem in Sweden, Virgin Media in the UK, and ONO in Spain. Tivo said it now covers nearly half of Virgin Media's subscribers and a third of ONO's subscribers.

TiVo's services in Europe center on the idea that consumers want multi-screen access to programming. TiVo's offering allows users to watch pay-TV programming in the home, … Read more

Time Warner Cable CEO reiterates confidence in Comcast deal

Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus reiterated his confidence in getting regulatory approval for the $45.2 billion deal with Comcast, and he explained that Time Warner Cable shareholders and customers will both benefit from the deal.

Speaking at the Deutsche Bank Media, Internet & Telecom Conference in Palm Beach, Florida on Wednesday, Marcus said he expects the deal to close by the end of the year. And he didn't express any worry that regulators would take issue with it.

"I have every confidence that the deal will close," he said. "We wouldn't have signed … Read more

Comcast really, really doesn't care about you (allegedly)

Comcast has often managed to be the target of abuse and, on a good day, gallows humor.

It regularly features in the Consumerist's list of worst American companies. Indeed, just three years ago, Comcast encouraged its staff to vote so that it wouldn't be named Worst Company in America.

But, now that it is proposing a merger with Time Warner Cable, things will certainly get better. The new Timecast (or Corner) will be a joy to do business with.

Your cable box will be automatically renewed every six months and installed by a happy, well-dressed employee. The box … Read more

For a few days, Apple TV comes with a $25 iTunes bonus

Apple's long-neglected set-top box may finally get a revamp this year, but for now you can get a $25 gift card for iTunes to binge on Oscar movies if you don't mind buying the current hockey-puck Apple TV.

As reported by 9to5 Mac, Apple is offering a $25 iTunes Gift Card that can be redeemed at the iTunes Store, the App Store, or the iBooks Store to anyone who purchases an Apple TV from now until Wednesday in an Apple US retail store or at its online store.

The terms and conditions of the deal say it's … Read more

Senate hearing on Comcast, TWC merger set for March 26

Time Warner Cable and Comcast will go before the Senate Judiciary Committee on March 26 to discuss their merger plans.

Comcast made public earlier this month its plan to merge with Time Warner Cable in a deal valued at $45.2 billion. The deal would combine the two largest cable providers in the US, but speculation abounds that several antitrust concerns will need to be remedied before the deal can move forward.

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), who is chairman of the Judiciary Committee, announced the hearing on Monday and noted that the merger "touches on important policy questions about … Read more

Netgear ships two new DOCSIS 3.0 cable modem-Wi-Fi router combos

With the looming merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, consumers might soon not have much of a choice in terms of how much they have to pay for their broadband service. But now they sure have more choices for the equipment.

Netgear today announced two home networking products designed specifically for cable Internet, the N600 Dual-Band WiFi Cable Modem Router (C3700) and the N300 WiFi Cable Modem Router (C3000). Both of these devices are modem/router combos, meaning they including both a cable modem and a Wi-Fi router in a single box.

Both the C3700 and the C3000 include … Read more

Uncle Sam must intercede in Comcast-Time Warner Cable deal

commentary Comcast proposes to take over Time Warner Cable in a $45 billion deal. It claims the merger would benefit consumers. Nonsense!

One perspective on this is the distinction between conduit and content. Verizon's optical fiber or Comcast's coaxial cable is the conduit over which video, Internet, and telephone services are carried to our homes. The television programs we watch are the video content.

At the local level, there is conduit competition between the cable company (Comcast or Time Warner Cable) and the telephone company (Verizon or AT&T). But there's no competition between Comcast and … Read more