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Intel’s rumored set-top box is already facing delays


Looks like Intel won’t have its rumored TV product ready for CES next week. According to the Wall Street Journal, delays with content agreements are hampering the development process, making it more difficult for the chip maker to bring the technology into your living room.

The report comes just days after rumors surfaced that Intel was interested in developing a set-top box for release this year, leveraging existing broadband service to deliver live television to customers. Sources with TechCrunch stated that the device would complement existing cable service, allowing viewers to watch and record broadcast and cable television while also accessing content via Netflix and other streaming sites. It would be Intel’s first foray into the consumer space, and an ambitious one at that. The move mirrors recent efforts made by the likes of Boxee and Roku to develop integrated solutions for television viewership, but adds tailor-made advertising to make the experience completely curated and personal. In effect, Intel would beat both Apple and Google into a space that has dogged them for years.

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However, the dream was deferred. The Journal reports that cable companies have been loath to license their content to anyone that might disrupt their already lucrative business model, especially one as untested in the consumer space as Intel. The chip maker has reportedly reached one deal, but that’s far from enough to offer a robust solution to make cable cutting the norm. The delays have thrown the 2013 debut of Intel’s television solution into question.

Intel has long expressed interest in the pay-TV business, already having developed technology for real-time video encoding and distribution and even working with Google to develop the ill-fated Google TV. However, the company faces an uphill battle in dismantling the deeply entrenched TV market. Luckily, 2013 has only just begun.

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