Ready to plug in that tru2way TV set you’ve got sitting in your living room? Yeah, probably not.
Today is the day that many of the large cable operators agreed to be ready to support tru2way-enabled CE devices. In a memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed last year with major CE companies, the cablecos agreed to support tru2way so that retail devices could be plugged in to a cable network and receive two-way services – not just downstream video delivery, but also upstream services like VOD. Unfortunately, operators haven’t quite met the deadline. Support is improving, but it’s not nearly at 100%.
The fallout from missing the deadline isn’t as bad as you might expect. The consumer electronics industry grudgingly admits that cable has been making a good-faith effort, and everything I hear suggests that cable companies really are making progress. Further network support is delayed, but only by a matter of months in many cases.
There’s also the little fact that there aren’t many tru2way devices available at retail anyway. In a classic chicken-and-egg dilemma, the CE industry has waited for network readiness to bring new products to market. Meanwhile with few products out, there was little incentive (before the MOU) to prep cable networks to support them.
In short, today’s deadline – missed or not – isn’t a huge deal. But look for a big retail tru2way push at CES 2010.