A Real-World System Cost Model For Off-Premises Subscriber Equipment (1985)

By James R. Van Cleave, General Instrument Corporation

Off-premises subscriber equipment is either now available or under development by several manufacturers. This equipment includes outdoor addressable converters, taps, traps and jammers, applications for which are predicated on a growing need to minimize the electronic equipment inside the subscriber's home not only to increase signal security, but to reduce system maintenance and pay channel churn.

This paper presents a unified analysis of a fragmented and multi-faceted emerging technology. It proffers a simple and accurate method of estimating total system costs required in the use of off-premise subscriber equipment and presents a model that allows a direct relation between equipment costs and system costs applicable to all known off-premises devices.

There has been little or no means of prov~ding a cons~stent comparison between the various manufacturers' products on a cost-per-subscriber basis. Presently, manufacturers can provide equipment pricing either for fully loaded (100 percent penetration), or partially loaded configurations, i.e., prices for a "common" housing, chassis, etc., and plug-in subscriber modules. However, these equipment costs cannot be related to the system cost without an actual model.

The model presented here is based on actual port usage, employing statistics from Jerrold's installed base, in order to arrive at a probability density function. It is applicable to any off-premises subscriber device and provides for an estimation of system costs and a comparison of competitive technology. The model has undergone extensive testing by application to actual systems presently under design.

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