It may not sound like much at first, but Cablevision and Time Warner took an important step today to help make TV Everywhere a reality. The companies announced that Cablevision customers now can watch shows from TBS, TNT, CNN, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, and truTV on broadband-enabled devices outside the home — not just inside. The arrangement also provides for live streaming of news from CNN and HLN. Over the next year or so you can expect to hear a lot of announcements like this from pay TV distributors and programmers. Comcast, Dish Network, and Verizon are already a step ahead of Cablevision in offering out-of-home service. But this deal for a package called Turner TV Everywhere is the first time Cablevision has offered such popular entertainment and news programming so broadly to digital devices. One of the big hangups has been authentication, the process that ensures only people who pay Cablevision a monthly fee for cable TV are able to see shows on their laptops, tablets, and smartphones. Cablevision and Turner will use technology from Adobe Systems to keep freeloaders away. Cablevision customers will need to provide an ID and password to watch shows on Turner Web sites, or on free apps for iPads, iPhones, and iPod touch devices. Turner is eager to promote TV Everywhere — and other programmers are warming to the concept as they work out technological and contractual issues. Last month, Viacom and Cablevision settled a suit that the parent of MTV Networks filed to bar the cable operator from using the Web to retransmit shows for free to iPad customers while they’re at home.
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