have entered into a broader strategic relationship that includes an agreement for a multi-year set-top commitment valued at more than $1 billion, the largest set-top purchase agreement in the operator’s history. The two companies have also announced an agreement to form two joint ventures focused on next-generation conditional access technologies.
The set-top commitment will extend Comcast and Motorola’s multi-year agreement for Comcast to purchase set-tops and network equipment. Motorola will provide high-definition digital video recorders and standard-definition entry-level models, among others.
The joint ventures will focus on the development and licensing of current and future conditional access (CA) and other cable technologies. Conditional access technologies enable cable providers to ensure that customers receive only the video services to which they subscribe. As part of the transaction, Motorola has granted the ventures a non-exclusive license for MediaCipher, its leading conditional access technology.
The first joint venture will focus primarily on development of a next-generation conditional access system, using MediaCipher as its foundation. Comcast and Motorola will jointly manage the development group.
The second joint venture will focus on licensing conditional access and other cable technologies, including MediaCipher, to
The joint venture agreements, which are subject to customary closing conditions, are expected to be completed during the late first or early second quarter of 2005.