NCTA

What's New From NCTA

Saving Energy for Consumers

Saving Energy for Consumers

In participating in a major new Set-Top Box Energy Conservation Agreement, NCTA member companies today re-affirmed the industry’s strong commitment to continued improvement in the energy efficiency of the set-top boxes we provide to our customers. Signatories of the agreement include several NCTA member companies: cable operators Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox, Charter, Cablevision, Bright House Networks and manufacturers Cisco, Motorola, and ARRIS.  They have joined satellite and telco TV providers in an organized voluntary approach to achieve dramatic energy savings without sacrificing the ability to innovate and compete. Our industry has for several years worked on improving the energy efficiency of set-top boxes. Low power usage is good for business and good for our customers.  It lowers the cost of leasing set-top boxes, results in fewer trouble calls, and delivers better performance in a competitive marketplace. Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA) praised the agreement saying, "I would like to congratulate the 15 companies that joined today’s agreement, which will save consumers billions of dollars in reduced electricity bills.Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) also lauded the industry noting, "I commend the industry for proactively developing a consensus agreement that will save their customers money, and not waiting for a federal mandate that forces them to act." In the landmark agreement that NCTA and CEA announced today – which takes effect on January 1, 2013 – the six largest cable companies commit that:
  • For immediate residential electricity savings, they will enable “light sleep” capabilities in more than 10 million digital video recorders that are already in homes.
  • They will field test “deep sleep” functionality in next generation cable set-top boxes and will deploy that next generation functionality if successful.
  • They will work through a new organization, in collaboration with other energy stakeholders, to keep updating energy efficiency measures as the technology advances.
But this isn’t cable’s first effort to improve energy efficiency.  Today’s announcement expands upon the commitments the cable industry made in its November 2011 pledge to California Senator Dianne Feinstein. We already accomplished one of those major commitments – creating an Energy Lab at the industry’s CableLabs facility – and that lab is up and running in examining new ways to conserve energy. But by bringing satellite and telco TV providers into the fold, the agreement covers a much wider marketplace (over 90 million households), while creating a forum for review and updating energy efficiency measures and establishing detailed processes for transparency, reporting and verification. This approach is great news for all involved. Consumers benefit from lower electricity bills yet still enjoy rapid innovation. Cable companies and their suppliers have an organized method for increasing energy efficiencies while protecting innovation.  And the video industry can bring energy efficiency techniques to market by working closely with the government.