Profile: Charter Communications Inc (CHTR.OQ)
Charter Communications, Inc. (Charter), incorporated on July 22, 1999, is a provider of cable services in the United States, offering a range of entertainment, information and communications solutions to residential and commercial customers. The Company operates through broadband services segment. The Company's services include Video Services, Internet Services, Voice Services, Commercial Services and Advertising Services. The Company's infrastructure consists of a hybrid of fiber and coaxial cable plant with approximately 12.8 million estimated passings, with over 98% at approximately 550 megahertz (MHz), over 99% of plant miles two-way active and approximately 100% of plant all-digital. The Company sells its video, Internet and voice services primarily on a subscription basis, often in a bundle of two or more services. It offers Charter Spectrum brand in its all-digital markets. Digital video enables its customers to access advanced video services, such as high definition (HD) television, video on demand programming, an interactive program guide and digital video recorder (DVR) service. Through Spectrum Business, it provides tailored broadband communications solutions to business and carrier organizations, such as video entertainment services, Internet access, business telephone services, data networking and fiber connectivity to cellular towers and office buildings. Its advertising sales division, Spectrum Reach, provides local, regional and national businesses with a focus on advertising in individual markets on cable television networks. Through its hybrid fiber and coaxial cable network, the Company offers its customers traditional cable video services, as well as advanced video services (such as video on demand, HD television, and DVR service), Internet services and voice services. The Company's voice services are provided using voice over Internet protocol (VoIP) technology, to transmit digital voice signals over the Company's systems.
The Company's network includes approximately three components, including the national backbone, regional/metro networks and the last-mile network. Both its national backbone and regional/metro network components utilize or plan to utilize a redundant Internet Protocol (IP) ring/mesh architecture. The national backbone provides connectivity from the regional demarcation points to nationally centralized content, connectivity and services. The regional/metro network components provide connectivity between the regional demarcation points and headends within a specific geographic area and enable the delivery of content and services between these network components. Its last-mile network utilizes a hybrid fiber coaxial cable (HFC) architecture, which combines the use of fiber optic cable with coaxial cable.
The Company's video service offerings include Video; Video On Demand, Subscription On Demand and Pay-Per-View; High Definition Television; Digital Video Recorder; Spectrum TV Application on Mobile Devices; Spectrum TV Application on Immobile Devices, and Spectrum Guide. The Company's customers receive a package of basic programming, which consists of local broadcast television, local community programming, including governmental and public access, and limited satellite-delivered or non-broadcast channels, such as weather, shopping and religious programming along with a digital set-top box that provides an interactive electronic programming guide with parental controls, access to pay-per-view channels, including video-on- demand (available nearly everywhere), digital quality music channels and the option to also receive a cable card. Customers have the option to purchase additional tiers of services, including premium channels, which provide programming, commercial-free movies, sports and other special event entertainment programming. In most areas, the Company offers video-on- demand service, which allows customers to select from approximately 10,000 or more titles at any time. Video-on-demand includes standard definition, HD and three-dimensional (3D) content. Video-on- demand programming options may be accessed if the content is associated with the customer's linear subscription, or for a fee on a transactional basis. Video-on-demand services may also be offered on a subscription basis included in a digital tier premium channel subscription or for a monthly fee. Pay-per-view channels allow customers to pay on a per-event basis to view a single showing of a recently released movie, a one-time special sporting event, music concert, or similar event on a commercial-free basis. HD Television offers the Company's digital customers video programming at a higher resolution to manage picture and audio quality versus standard basic or digital video images. The Company offers over 200 HD channels.
The Company's Digital Video Recorder service enables customers to digitally record programming and to pause and rewind live programming. Charter customers may lease multiple DVR set-top boxes to maximize recording capacity on multiple televisions in the home. Its customers also have the ability to program their DVRs remotely via the Spectrum TV Application or on the Company's Website. The Spectrum TV Application enables Charter video customers to search and discover content on various customer owned devices, including the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch, as well as the Android-based tablets. The Spectrum TV Application allows customers to watch over 150 channels of cable television and use the device as a remote to control their digital set-top box while in their home. It also allows customers the ability to browse Charter's program guide, search for programming, and schedule DVR recordings from inside and outside the home. Charter offers the Spectrum TV Application on Roku devices. This application enables all Charter video customers with a Roku device to watch live linear programming via the Spectrum TV Application. It offers Spectrum Guide, a network or cloud-based user interface with a similar look and feel of the Spectrum TV Application.
The Company's residential Internet services offer its residential customers multiple tiers of Internet services with download speeds of approximately 100 Megabits per second (Mbps), and approximately 120 Mbps in certain markets. The Company's Internet services also include an Internet portal, Charter.net, which provides multiple e-mail addresses. Charter Security Suite is included with Charter Internet services and protects computers from viruses and spyware, and provides parental control features. Charter offers an in-home wireless fidelity (WiFi) product permitting customers to lease a wireless router to manage their wireless Internet experience. Charter offers an out-of-home WiFi service (Spectrum WiFi) in over four market areas permitting Internet customers to access the Internet at designated hot spots within a particular market.
The Company provides voice communications services primarily using VoIP technology to transmit digital voice signals over its network. The Company's voice services include unlimited local and long distance calling to the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico, voicemail, call waiting, caller identity (ID), call forwarding and other features and offers international calling either by the minute or through packages of minutes per month. For Charter Voice and video customers, caller ID on television is also available in most areas.
Commercial services offered through Spectrum Business include broadband communications solutions for businesses and carrier organizations of all sizes, such as Internet access, data networking, fiber connectivity to cellular towers and office buildings, video entertainment services and business telephone services. Charter offers basic coax service primarily to small businesses (1-19 employees) and medium (20-199 employees) businesses similar to its residential offerings. Spectrum Business includes a full range of video programming tiers and music services, and coax Internet speeds of approximately 100 Mbps downstream, over 200 Mbps in certain markets, and approximately seven Mbps upstream in its DOCSIS 3.0 markets. Spectrum Business also includes a set of business cloud services, including Web hosting, e-mail and security, and multi-line telephone services with over 30 business features, including Web-based service management. Charter offers fiber or complex services to medium and large (200+ employees) businesses, including fiber Internet with symmetrical speeds of approximately 10 Gbps and voice trunking services, such as Primary Rate Interface (PRI) and Session Initiation Protocol (SIP) Trunks, which provide higher-capacity voice services. Charter also offers Metro Ethernet service that connects two or more locations for commercial customers with geographically dispersed locations with services of approximately 10 Gbps. Metro Ethernet service can also extend the reach of the customer's local area network (LAN) within and between metropolitan areas. In addition, Charter offers large businesses with multiple sites specialized solutions, such as custom fiber networks and Metro and long haul Ethernet. Charter also offers last-mile data connectivity services to wireless and wireline carriers, Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and other carriers on a wholesale basis.
The Company's advertising sales division, Spectrum Reach, allows local, regional and national business to advertise in individual markets on cable television networks. In any particular market, it inserts local advertising on over 50 channels. In most cases, the available advertising time is sold by its sales force, however in some markets, it enters into representation agreements with contiguous cable system operators, under which another operator in the area will sell advertising on its behalf for a percentage of the revenue. In some markets, it sells advertising on behalf of other operators. Charter deploys Enhanced TV Binary Interchange Format (EBIF) technology to set-top boxes in most service areas within the Charter footprint. EBIF is a technology foundation that will allow Charter to deliver television applications for advertising. From time to time, certain of its vendors, including programmers and equipment vendors, purchase advertising from Charter.
The Company competes with AT&T Inc., Verizon Communications, Inc., Google Fiber, Hulu, Netflix, Amazon, Apple, HBO, Showtime, CBS, Sony, T-Mobile and DISH Network.
Charter Communications Inc
12405 Powerscourt Dr
ST. LOUIS MO 63131-3673
Company Web Links
- BRIEF-Newhouse Broadcasting reports 13 pct stake in Charter Communications
- Charter Communications completes purchase of Time Warner Cable
- Charter Communications completes purchase of Time Warner Cable
- BRIEF-Charter CEO says plans to integrate OTT with traditional television
- BRIEF-Charter Communications, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks complete transactions