OCAP the Buzz at Cable Show


The push toward a common middleware platform for cable set-top boxes is front and center at this week’s Cable Show in Las Vegas, where early reports say the technology looks good but isn’t quite yet at plug-and-play levels of operability.

In case the acronym is Greek to you, OCAP, which stands for OpenCable Application Platform, is the industry-standard middleware platform designed to give application developers a write-once, run-anywhere interface for a multitude of STB offerings. With any luck, implementation of OCAP may put an end to the days of closed set-top box offerings, instead opening up an era of STB innovation.

Cable operators, who have made public pledges to support OCAP, showed off some trials of the technology during a special OCAP-centric day Sunday in Vegas. The Cable Show blog highlighted some of the tests, which included spiffier program-negotiating screens, a godsend for those of us who toil with the current offerings.

But as Light Reading reports, a panel of cable operators said that implementing OCAP was far from a snap of the fingers. Perhaps then it’s wise to take the 2008 deployment date targets with a grain of salt, keeping your remote handy in the meantime.

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