November 15, 2018

T-Mobile set-top box surfaces on FCC, ‘Un-carrier’ TV service can’t be far behind


X Scalper

Late last year, T-Mobile announced its intentions to “uncarrier” television service, with its purchase of Layer3, an online TV provider. The first fruits of that acquisition have just reared their head at the FCC in the form of a new T-Mobile-branded set-top box.

FCC filings don’t include a whole lot of information, but we do know based on the data provided that it features 2.4/5GHz Wi-Fi and Bluetooth (BLE, based on the description included in one of the internal images).

According to the Installation Guide (embedded at the bottom of this post), the hardware has the formal and incredibly imaginative name “T-MOBILE MINI_ VM3011C.” It has a remote as well, photos for which aren’t included with the filing, though there is a truncated image of one end of it in the Installation Guide PDF:

Although there doesn’t appear to be a coaxial connection on any of the product images, the manual also makes mention of an ANT IN input for use with terrestrial antennas, so it’s possible that there could be a built-in tuner as well — though I’m more likely to believe the manual is simply in error.

Other inputs include Ethernet, USB, and HDMI, plus the requisite HDMI output.

Humorously enough, T-Mobile’s ODM requested confidentiality on many of the internal schematics but didn’t seem to care when it came to the plethora of external photos or the installation manual.

We still don’t know how much this unit might cost, or what T-Mobile plans on charging for its TV service, but given the hardware is making its way through the FCC, we’ll probably be hearing a lot more about it very soon. And with how fast cable TV prices are rising, it can’t get here quickly enough.

T-Mobile Layer3 set-top box (MINI_ VM3011C) manual by Ryne Hager on Scribd




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