Charter Communications continues to hope that technology will enable it to become cable’s little engine that could. CEO Michael Lovett says that his company’s arrangement to sell TiVo DVRs to customers — which is just getting started in Ft. Worth, Texas — is “a pretty dynamic game-changer.” He says the product “allows us to play offense” against satellite companies and telcos led by AT&T’s U-verse that have targeted the No. 4 cable operator, which emerged from bankruptcy protection two years ago. “We anticipate marketing this product aggressively.” The company also has big plans for on-screen navigation; it recently began to offer its broadband customers aggregated video listings for Hulu, Netflix and Amazon. But executives say they plan to resist broadcaster efforts to negotiate retransmission consent deals with high payments. “At what point does the customer say enough’s enough?” CFO Christopher Winfrey asks.
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