My book “The Revolutionary Evolution of the Media” continues! This is a work in progress … how a changing world has made media what it is today. Read the latest chapter here .

Comment : Belated kudos to Cablevision for jumping into Wi-Fi “Freephones” with Motorola. Ever since Verizon teamed up with Comcast (in a few places) as Comcast rolled out ever more Wi-Fi hotspots (including one in my rented modem that I dismantled) I thought they’d do something like this … maybe JD & the Straight Shots touring with the Eagles looking for hot spots had something to do with Cablevision being first! Nice.

Seems like every shift in communications since the ‘70s involves CommScope. Ever since my old friend Frank Drendel bought Continental Telephones’ manufacturing units there hasn’t been a single change without Frank’s former company’s involvement. Frank remains one of the more unsung true heroes of cable’s growth. Carlyle Group owns it now as it acquires TE Connectivity; but it is still in Hickory, NC … a must – and pleasant – visit back in the day.

Okay, a cheaper HBO and I’ll buy. Waiting on you, DirecTV. Wondering why I don’t have cable? I do … for web and VoIP … dates back to really bad service up here on the other side of the Great Divide at 9,600 feet (no over-the-airhead access) and friends in La La Land.

$44.9B for airwaves. The apocalypse must be around the corner as the Federal Confusion Commission did something right … the next question is: Can they do it again? Favorite House Republican punching bag Tom Wheeler says they can and they’ll tee it up for early 2016 to auction off the broadcast spectrum (cue a smiling Preston!) … if they can finesse repacking OK. Another right call (sorry NCTA) is redefining what broadband should be and not what it was. It is right for the FCC for set up future standards. Two right calls don’t a winning hand make, though … so watch out on the 5th as some details on Title II will emerge in anticipation of a vote later this month.

Apple had almost 40% margins last quarter … makes me nostalgic for earlier cable system margins!

In an almost 50-year career writing and reporting on media, Paul S. Maxwell started and/or ran some 45-plus publications ranging from CATV Newsweekly to Colorado Magazine to CableVision to Multichannel News to CableFAX and The BRIDGE Suite of daily newsletters and research publications. In between publishing stints, Maxwell served as an advisor and/or consultant to a number of major media companies and media start-ups including running a unit of MCI and managing a partnership of TCI and McGraw-Hill.

Send any and all criticisms, suggestions, rants, threats, corrections, etc. to him at cablemax@mac.com. He has a new Web site coming soon!

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