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Charter Communications Nominates ARRIS for WorldBox 2.0


Charter Communications Inc. CHTR, the second largest cable MSO (multi service operator) in the U.S., has selected ARRIS International plc. ARRS, leading customer premises equipment (CPE) manufacturer for the cable TV industry, as its vendor partner for the cable MSO’s next-generation WorldBox 2.0 set-top box. Initiated in early 2015, WorldBox 2.0 is Charter Communications’ innovative hybrid IP/QAM video platform which is built to offer traditional and cloud-based user interfaces, content, and new video features to its subscribers.

Notably, just six days ago, Charter Communications entered into a share warrant agreement with ARRIS. Per the deal, Charter Communications has the right to purchase up to 6 million shares of ARRIS’ stock between now and the end of 2018. ARRIS will make certain number of shares available to Charter Communications only after the cable MSO purchases a specific volume of ARRIS’ products and services, specifically, the Network & Cloud segment products of ARRIS.

Charter Communications new set-top box called World Box offers great entertainment experience at a low cost. Cisco Systems Inc. CSCO and Humax Co. Ltd. were the two vendor partners for the first stage of WorldBox development. Worldbox 2.0 will expand the company’s current downloadable conditional access capabilities and enhance legacy hardware-based CAS systems across its footprint.

Charter Communications is taking various initiatives to upgrade its Spectrum product portfolio. The company has developed its cloud-based user interface named Spectrum Guide, to run on all set-top boxes offering advanced video navigation. It is currently developing Charter TV applications for its video-on-demand content.

Additionally, Charter Communications has independently certified its new WiFi router to provide wireless services. Moreover, it has initiated the rollout of its Spectrum WiFi, which provides unlimited Internet access to residential customers even when they are outdoors.

Importantly, Charter Communications has announced that it will foray into the wireless market. The company will activate its MVNO (mobile virtual network operator) agreement with Verizon Communications Inc. VZ, which was taken over after the acquisition of Time Warner Cable. It will also install several WiFi hotspots across cities to expand its wireless network. Charter Communications currently carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell) while ARRIS has a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold). You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy) stocks here.

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