Technology

New Interview with CEO, David Del Beccaro, on Music Choice's New Interactive TV Network, SWRV

--Plus New iTV Doctor Column on ActiveVideo Networks and its Cloud-Based Approach to ITV

[itvt] has just published a radio interview with David Del Beccaro, founder, president and CEO of multiplatform music programmer, Music Choice.

Univision Launches Soccer App for Apple iPhone/iPod Touch

--iPad Version to Launch Before 2010 World Cup

Univision Interactive Media, the digital division of US Spanish-language broadcaster, Univision, announced Wednesday that it has launched a free, video-enabled soccer application, called Univision Futbol, in the Apple App Store. According to the company, the app, which was developed in partnership with July Systems, is currently available for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch, and a version that has been optimized for the new Apple iPad will be available in time for the upcoming soccer World Cup.

BSkyB's Sky Player Broadband TV Service to Launch on New Freeview HD Set-Tops from Humax

UK satellite-TV provider, BSkyB, said Wednesday that its Sky Player broadband video service will be available on Humax's new range of high-definition hybrid DTT/IP set-top boxes for the UK's free-to-air digital terrestrial platform, Freeview (note: Humax is the UK's largest provider of Freeview set-tops). Those boxes include the Humax HD-FOX T2, which launched in February and which Humax claims is the UK's first Freeview HD box (note: the box also allows users to access the BBC iPlayer broadband TV service), and an HD DVR that is slated to launch in the coming months.

ABC Player iPad App Downloaded over 212,000 Times Since iPad's April 3rd Launch

--Disney/ABC Says 680,000 Episode Views Have Translated into "Several Million" Ad Impressions

Disney/ABC Television Group on Wednesday released early usage statistics for its recently launched ABC Player app for the Apple iPad. The app, which is based on the ABC.com Full Episode Player and which Disney/ABC says was designed, developed and launched in less than five weeks, allows users to watch free, ad-supported episodes from around 20 ABC series through WiFi, and also to purchase downloads of episodes from the iTunes store. Disney/ABC is currently the only major broadcaster to offer such an app.

According to Disney/ABC:

Kaltura Launches "Virtual Marketplace" for Broadband Video Applications

At the NAB show in Las Vegas, Wednesday, Kaltura, a company that offers what it bills as the first open source broadband video platform, launched the "Kaltura Exchange" (http://exchange.kaltura.com), which it bills as a "virtual marketplace" where video publishers, developers, technology companies and service providers can share and trade in video applications and services connected to the Kaltura platform. According to the company, the Kaltura Exchange, which is currently in beta, is the first service of its kind in the video space, and will connect developers and service providers to publishers, value-added resellers and system integrators looking to expand upon the core Kaltura platform.

IneoQuest-Subsidiary, Vloop, Launches Social TV Platform

--Company Claims Platform Offers Tangible Benefits for Content Providers, Operators

Vloop, a start-up that is a subsidiary of IneoQuest, a provider of solutions for monitoring digital video delivery, officially launched its eponymous social TV service at the NAB show in Las Vegas Wednesday. According to the company, the free service, which is currently available in beta at http://www.vloop.com and for which it says patents are pending, lets users:

Discovery Taps Total Immersion to Develop Augmented Reality Game for "Deadliest Catch"

--MIT Media Lab's New "Surround Vision" Tech Uses AR to Extend Programming beyond the TV Screen

Augmented reality specialist, Total Immersion, contacted [itvt] Tuesday to let us know that it has been tapped by the Discovery Channel and the latter's media agency, PHD, to develop an interactive augmented reality game to promote the sixth season of the action-documentary series, "Deadliest Catch" (note: the series, whose season premiere aired on April 13th, follows the trials and tribulations of Alaskan crab fishermen in the Berings Sea). A demo video of the so-called "Deadliest Catch Big Catch 3D Game" is embedded above.

Netflix Licenses Irdeto's Cloakware Technology to Protect its Instant Streaming Content

--Says the Technology Will Enable It to Offer Instant Streaming Service on More CE Devices

Content protection specialist, Irdeto, said Tuesday that video rental company, Netflix, has licensed its Cloakware embedded security technology as part of its suite of content protection tools for its "Watch Instantly" instant streaming service. "We have always been committed to offering our members the greatest convenience, selection and value for instantly watching TV episodes and movies across a wide range of consumer electronics devices," Bill Holmes, Netflix's VP of business development, said in a prepared statement. "As we looked to proactively enhance our content offerings, Irdeto with its Cloakware security technology, was a natural choice to support our commitment to digital content protection."

Starling Unveils New Social TV Platform for Mobiles, Tablet Computers and the Web

At the MIPTV show in Cannes, Tuesday, a start-up called Starling unveiled a new, two-screen social TV platform.

mDialog Launches Interactive Video Overlay Ads for the Apple iPad

At the NAB show in Las Vegas, Tuesday, mobile video and in-stream ad management company, mDialog, launched in-stream interactive overlay ads for the new Apple iPad. According to the company, which says it delivers video across Akamai's HD Network, advertisers can now offer "perfectly targeted" interactive overlay advertising on live events and pre-recorded video streamed on the iPad. The overlays also allow viewers to choose on the fly which ad they would prefer to view, the company says.

Coincident TV Teams with Ascent Media's Blink Digital to Develop Interactive Video Experiences

--Coincident Bills its Tech as Enabling Social Media, Web Links, Commerce, All Within the Video Player

At the NAB show in Las Vegas, Tuesday, Coincident TV (CTV)--the San Francisco-based start-up which earlier this week launched its flagship "hypervideo" software suite (note: the company bills the platform as combining online video, social media, Web links and commerce into a single immersive experience--see the article published on itvt.com, April 13th; the platform is currently powering a Facebook-integrated, interactive "social trailer" for Fox's primetime musical series, "Glee"--see the article published on itvt.com, Apri

News Round-Up

--Major Broadcasters Form Mobile TV Content Joint Venture
--History Channel Using Foursquare to Promote New Show
--Intel Demo's PVR Concept
--ON24 Launches "Social Webcasting" Platform
--Softel Working to Streamline Closed Caption Workflow on Avid Editing Systems
--Interactive Video Specialist, Veeple, Launches "VeepleTV"
--YuMe Announces Support for Microsoft Silverlight

Here is a round-up of some other recent interactive TV-related stories that we didn't have room for in this issue:

India's Bharti Airtel Launches NDS-Powered DVR Service on its Satellite TV Platform

Interactive TV and conditional access technology provider, NDS, said Tuesday that Indian integrated telecom services provider, Bharti Airtel, has deployed its XTV technology to power an integrated DVR service for its satellite TV platform, Airtel Digital TV. The platform, which launched back in 2008, also uses NDS's VideoGuard conditional access system, its MediaHighway middleware, and a multi-lingual EPG that was developed by NDS.

According to NDS, the new XTV-powered Airtel DVR service features:

Gotuit in Broadband Video Advertising Partnership with FreeWheel

Gotuit Media, a company that offers metadata technologies which, among other things, allow end-users to instantly access the parts of a piece of video that interest them, and which can also be used by video publishers to allow end-users to make mash-ups out of their content, using metadata-defined virtual video clips (note: its customers include ESPN, Turner and WWE), said Tuesday that it has integrated its technologies with FreeWheel's video monetization technology, and has also joined FreeWheel's PAVE ("Partners Accelerating the Video Economy") Initiative.

FLO TV to Expand its Mobile TV Service with Interactive TV, VOD and Time-Shifted Viewing

At the NAB show in Las Vegas, Tuesday, Qualcomm-subsidiary, FLO TV, announced that it is working to enhance its mobile TV service with new interactive applications that integrate video with Web-based content and social media tools (note: rival MobiTV also recently announced plans to add interactive TV to its service--see the article published on itvt.com, April 13th). The company says that the new capabilities are being developed in response to the ways in which consumers today are simultaneously viewing and interacting with content.

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