Time Warner Cable is extending its live TV streaming service for in-home viewing on personal computers, although as with the original iPad version Viacom's networks are excluded from the nearly 200-channel lineup.
The operator is calling the PC and Mac service, which is powered by Microsoft's Silverlight media-delivery software, a beta test. TWC customers can access the service at www.twctv.com.
Cablevision Systems, which offers in-home TV via apps for iPads and iPhones, also is testing a Silverlight-powered service for PCs and Macs.
In addition to live TV, the TWC TV service provides up to seven days of searchable TV listings, a "Watch on TV" button to change the channel on a set-top box; DVR management features; and the ability to manage favorite channels, parental controls and closed-captioning settings for the website's video player.
"Ever since launching the TWC TV app for the iPad, we've been expanding the platforms that our customers can use to get value from their video subscription, and this represents the latest star in that particular constellation," director of digital communications Jeff Simmermon wrote in a blog post.
Currently, local broadcast TV stations are not available in the TWC TV services. The channel lineup, which varies by market and according to a customer's video package, is available here: www.timewarnercable.com/MediaLibrary/4/73/learn/cable/twc_tv/TWCTV_Channel_List.pdf.
Time Warner Cable still has not reached an agreement with Viacom to offer live TV on iPads, PCs and other devices inside a subscriber's home. The programmer sued TWC over the iPad app last year, while the MSO sought a declaratory ruling that it has rights to offer programming to video devices under existing carriage deals. The parties agreed to suspend the litigation while they attempt to come to terms.
The Web version of TWC TV works on PCs and Macs, and requires the Microsoft Silverlight version 4 media. Browsers compatible with the service are: Microsoft Internet Explorer 7.0 and later; Mozilla Firefox 4 and later; Safari 5 and later; and Google Chrome version 17.
Customers must have a broadband connection and a Time Warner Cable standard (expanded basic) or higher video package to use the site. If subscribers don't have TWC or EarthLink high-speed Internet, the cable operator will
install a video-only wireless gateway to enable the live video feature.
Time Warner Cable requires that customers "secure your home wireless network" and specifies that they may not share access to the TWC TV website with any third parties, "other than household members and household guests."
Analog-only customers or those with set-top boxes that run Rovi's iGuide or Cisco's SARA cannot tune their TVs using the TWC TV apps or website.