A Commitment to Creating the Sustainable Devices of Tomorrow

In December 2013, Comcast joined with other leading multichannel video programming distributors, equipment manufacturers, and energy advocacy groups in launching a historic set-top energy conservation agreement.  When fully implemented across the industry, the agreement will result in an estimated $1.5 billion in annual residential electricity savings and reduce carbon emissions by the equivalent of four power plants each year.

Comcast already meets most of the energy savings goals set out in the agreement.  In 2013, over 93 percent of the new set-top boxes we purchased and brought into our inventory satisfied the Environment Protection Agency’s ENERGY STAR 3.0 efficiency levels, exceeding the 90 percent benchmark established in the agreement.  We expect those percentages to increase in 2014.  At the same time, Comcast is also working with its vendors on the next-generation of energy-efficient set-top boxes.  For example, Comcast is partnering with silicon chip manufacturers to integrate auto-power-down "deep sleep" modes and other energy features into their "system-on-a-chip" technology used in set-top boxes.  

Comcast plans to trial Set Top Boxes implementing auto-power down and deep sleep features by the end of 2014.  Based upon the results of this trial, Comcast will look to roll out these more advanced capabilities, in keeping with the obligations agreed to under the energy conservation agreement.

Comcast is also taking other measures to reduce the energy footprint of our services in the home.  This includes deploying home-networking solutions that limit the need for multiple DVRs in the home; migrating program guide and DVR recording capabilities from the set-top box to the cloud, where energy can be efficiently managed on a shared basis; deploying over 30 million digital transport adapters, which run on only four watts of power; and streaming our cable services in IP to iPads, smartphones, and other customer-owned devices in the home that don’t require a connected set-top box.

The energy consumption values for the set top boxes currently being purchased and deployed by Comcast are available on the Cable Labs energy website, located at http://energy.cablelabs.com/comcast.