Cavalier Rides Into MPEG-4 Technology

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A relative telco David, Cavalier Telephone, claimed that it has beaten Goliath AT&T Inc., announcing that it is the first to launch a fully IPTV-based service offering MPEG-4 video.

Cavalier launched its “Broadband TV” service in its hometown of Richmond, Va., offering more than 150 digital channels, including all of the local network affiliates, via its IP fiber-optic network.

The video Broadband TV package is being offered to customers along with Caviler voice and high-speed-Internet service for a combined $95 monthly subscription.

"Our customers are looking for value, and a $50-per-month savings is substantial," Cavalier CEO Brad Evans said. "We intend to go head-to-head with existing cable and satellite firms showcasing our superior picture quality and network reliability.”

An interactive electronic program guide gives users tools to set up parental controls and family viewing habits, and the on-screen caller-ID feature lets them screen incoming phone calls while watching TV. Cavalier’s digital set-top box also provides on-demand and pay-per view programming.

The telco claims about 215,000 residential and 35,000 business customers in its mid-Atlantic territory, offering service via a fiber-optic-driven network.

At launch, the Broadband TV service will pass more than 250,000 homes in Richmond. Plans are to roll out the video service during the next few months in other Cavalier service markets, including Norfolk, Va.; Baltimore; Philadelphia; and metro Washington, D.C. With that, Cavalier's Broadband TV service will be available to 2 million homes.

The telco also plans to unveil added interactive applications, including TV mail, interactive programming and gaming.

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