Tag Archives: Content Distribution

I Watched ‘TEN Cricket’ In The U.S., On My TV, Last Night Using Skybox TV. It Was GREAT!

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.tenlogo

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Anura Guruge


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The Skybox TV next to the DirecTV Genie. It is pretty small. The tall box directly below that is the DirecTV Wi-Fi ‘modem’ and next to that is my 2nd DVD/VCR player. On the shelf above is a Philips DVD player/Sound Bar. The 47″ Philips TV is above all of this.


It was GREAT! It made my day.

To be able to see all my West Indian and Indian ‘buddies’ in action again, FULL-SCREEN on my 47″ TV, in near HD quality, with none of the jerkiness associated with streaming video.

This was a delight. I was so happy.

The picture quality is sure better than what I was getting with DISH.

So it is indeed possible to get ‘TEN Cricket‘ on your TV independent of ESPN 3. That is real good news for us in the U.S.

I was using the Skybox TV device kindly provided to me by ZEE TV USA.

It is a little box that connects to your TV using HDMI and gets its content over the Internet using Wi-Fi. It is extremely easy to setup. Just two cables: power and HDMI. Then just type in your Wi-Fi network password. Bingo. Bob is your uncle. I am currently getting about 25 International channels — one of them TEN Cricket.

I can’t rhapsodize enough about the quality. I am always skeptical about video quality with streaming. The quality with SkyBox TV is beyond acceptable. As good, if not better, that what I got with DISH. No ghosting. No delay. No jitter. Just like broadcast TV.

I got to watch the 60 minute highlight package of the 2nd West Indies Tri-Nation Series played on June 30, 2013 between the West Indies and India. It was a good, tense match with some great hitting and some good wickets.

Johnson Charles played an innings of a lifetime. At the start he made Chris Gayle look pedestrian. His first 20 runs were all in boundaries. In the end he hit four sixes and eight fours. Though he perished, unnecessarily at 97, it was an innings of a lifetime. Reminded me of Collis Kings, unforgettable 86 (off 149) at the 1979 World Cup Final with Viv. I was THERE. I still remember the electricity of that innings and most of all Viv applauding Collis when he was finally out. Viv made a century but it was Collis’ that won the match. Johnson Charles’ innings was as worthy as that — and yes the West Indies won by 1 wicket with 2.2 overs to spare. Chris Gayle disappointed again. Of course I love Chris when he is firing on all cylinders, but as I have said before I have major doubts about his technique. And yet again in this match it was his technical ineptitude that let him down. That is why Dhoni has an average over 50 and Gayle has an average below 40. Ditto for Pollard and Samuels and possibly even Sammy. But it was a real fun match. So glad I got to watch it. 

I will write more about this Skybox TV as I spend more time with it.

Right now, I am so happy to be able to watch TEN Cricket on my TV in the U.S.

Thank YOU ZEE TV USA.

Exclusive Update On ‘Ten Cricket’ In U.S.A. From ZEE/Asia TV USA.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.tenlogo

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Anura Guruge


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Yesterday afternoon, around 4:15, the phone ran. It was a Akhilesh Gupta, the Director of Content Distribution for Asia TV USA — the ZEE Network affiliate in the U.S., based out of Manhattan. TEN Cricket is owned by ZEE.

Mr. Gupta had seen my rant about us in the U.S. losing TEN Cricket (other than for the short, online ‘clips’ on ESPN 3).

Mr. Gupta and I had an extremely pleasant and very productive conversation. I was very impressed, He was very forthright and gave me a lot of information — much of it which I will not share because it was of a sensitive nature.

I explained to Mr. Gupta the pain that us U.S. cricket fans are feeling. He understood. But, I think I managed to get through to him that ESPN 3 is not the answer to our needs.

The bottom line, as some of us had already deduced, is basic economics. Obtaining rights to major sporting events is not cheap. Networks have to recoup that money — as NBC clearly demonstrates every 2 years with the Olympics.

The issue in the U.S. is STILL the lack of adequate demand for PAID subscription.

It is a story that I am so familiar with and suffer in my own right. The Internet coupled with piracy (from Asia) is undermining so many ventures. It was like music and Napster.

Though we in the U.S. have a burgeoning population of cricket lovers many are unwilling or UNABLE to pay for it. I know that first hand. I don’t know many Sri Lankans in the U.S. or Canada. But, the few I know never subscribed to Willow or TEN. They watched cricket, for FREE, on the Internet. That is the problem. Many, and I know the same is true with Indians, have to be ‘careful’ with their expenditures because they send money back home. Kind of money. If you recall the people who advertised the MOST on cricket channels in the U.S. were the likes of XOOM.come, i.e., those that transfer money from the U.S./U.K. to India! So understandably the folks living in the U.S., to use a lovely expression from N.H., are ‘close to their dollar‘. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. IF we want something better than cricket on ESPN 3 we have to pay the piper. Simple as that.

According to Mr. Gupta, ZEE in the U.S. is exploring offering an ‘Over-the-Top’ (OTT) set-top, Internet powered solution. I think it might be this IPTV solution I talked about on June 15, 2013. Mr. Gupta is trying to see if he can get me an OTT box to try out. IF SO, I will, of course, keep all of you posted on my experience. IF it is a viable solution we will have to PULL TOGETHER to make that box a success in the U.S. So the first step is to try and get my hands on one.

I am in touch with Mr. Gupta by e-mail. I also have his phone number. This is good. Finally, WE, i.e., us cricket fans in the U.S., have a credible contact at ZEE.

I will keep you all posted. Thank Mr. Gupta. He did good.

Thank you Mr. Gupta.