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Verizon Buying OnCue TV Unit from Intel

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Intel couldn't make OnCue work -- its effort at creating an all-streaming live and on-demand pay TV network to challenge cable and satellite providers. Will Verizon have better luck?

Intel announced today that it has come to an agreement with Verizon to sell all of its cloud TV business assets. Neither party disclosed the terms of the agreement, but the Wall Street Journal reports that Intel had been looking for around $500 million for the division and CNET reports that industry sources valued the division as worth $300 million. As part of the agreement, Verizon will offer to hire roughly 350 workers previously employed by Intel. Jobs will stay in the Santa Clara, California, area and the division will have the same management team.

After regulatory approvals, the deal should close in the first quarter of this year.

Verizon sees OnCue as a way to differentiate FIOS video from other pay TV offerings. Content will be integrated with Verizon's fiber optic networks for home viewing and streamed to mobile devices over Verizon's 4G LTE wireless network.

While Verizon certainly has the bandwidth to deliver the service, missing from the announcement is any indication that the company will be able to sign content deals with studios or networks, or that it will offer consumers more attractive packages than they get from their current pay TV providers.

Verizon has been on a buying spree lately, adding EdgeCast and UpLynk to Verizon Digital Media Services. At CES, its management team promised major announcements well before NAB, and it's delivering. 

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