@ NCTA: Sprint Nextel-Cable JV: Seven Markets Chosen For Trials Later This Year; Details Sparse

The Sprint Nextel-cable JV has picked its first seven markets for trials during the second half of the year, according to the Journal: Time Warner Cable, Austin, Tex. and Raleigh, N.C.; Comcast, Portland, Ore., and an unidentified New England market; Cox and Advance/Newhouse, unidentified markets. The first wave will focus on some relatively simple functions like viewing a cable programming guide, watching video clips and integrating home voice and wireless use if both come from the cable operator. More complex features will be added after the basics survive testing; ditto for more markets. John Garcia, the president of the JV, told the Journal: “The worst thing we could do is offer a service that’s less than what consumers receive today.”
Garcia told the NYT: “We don’t have to invent television, the Internet or telephones. What we hope we can do is improve the experience you have with your television.” No sense of pricing or plan structures although analysts warn they will have to be competitive.
Reinforcing the cable-centric nature of the service, the announcement is being made here in Atlanta at the cable industry’s largest gathering instead of during last week’s CTIA address by TWC CEO Glenn Britt.