Advanced advertising technology provider, BlackArrow, announced Tuesday that its VOD ad insertion platform has gone live with Comcast in Jacksonville, Florida.
Cliqset, a company which has developed a platform for sharing, discovering and discussing content with social-network friends around the Web, on Tuesday launched a real-time conversation application for Boxee's over-the-top-TV platform. Cliqset's platform is designed to tie together over 70 different social networks, including Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, FriendFeed, Flickr and Yelp, into "activity streams" that users can share with their friends and to social networks, and thereby to enable real-time communication across those networks and around specific events in users' activity streams.
Rovi (formerly Macrovision--for more on the company's name change and the repositioning it heralds, see the interview with Rovi chief evangelist, Richard Bullwinkle, that was published on itvt.com, July 16th) said Tuesday that triple-play provider, RCN, has renewed a multi-year agreement to license Rovi's Passport Guide software, applications and television data. RCN recently went 100% digital in its Boston, Chicago, metro Washington DC, New York and Pennsylvania markets, and a set-top box is now needed to receive its programming.
Comcast Media Center (CMC), a business unit of the eponymous MSO that provides centralized content-management and distribution solutions for cable systems, video content providers and advertisers, said Tuesday that it has been tapped by US Spanish-language broadcaster, Univision Communications, to manage distribution of its Univision On Demand VOD service, which features content from Univision Communications' three linear networks, Univision, TeleFutura and Galavision. CMC claims that its national VOD platform reaches over 35 million VOD-enabled households and offers rapid-turn capabilities for acquiring and encoding linear TV programs, such as live sports events, providing near-real-time delivery to local VOD servers.
Veeple, a Palo Alto, Calif.-based company that specializes in interactive online video solutions for marketers (note: for an in-depth overview of the company's products and strategy, see the interview with its co-founder and CEO, Scott Broomfield, that was published on itvt.com, April 22nd), has developed an interactive API and plug-in, called interPlay, which it says will allow users to add Veeple interactive functionality to their existing, third-party online video player.
--Says Trove Will Launch under "Channel Zero" Brand on UK's Freeview DTT Platform "Imminently"
Electra Entertainment--a company that was founded in early 2003 by Static 2358 founder, Jasper Smith, and former Gemstar-TV Guide CTO, Jonathan Drazin (note: Smith serves as its CEO and Drazin as its CTO; its chairman is former BT and BSkyB director, John Swingewood)--on Monday provided a few more details about its flagship Trove interactive TV technology.
Patrick Barry--VP of connected TV at Yahoo!, who has become the public face of that company's OTT/TV widget efforts (note: in January, the company announced deals for its TV widget platform with TV manufacturers LG Electronics, Samsung, Sony and Vizio)--is leaving the company "to move on to new projects and aspirations." The following email from Barry, in which he announces to his staff that he will resign his position at the end of the month, was obtained Monday by TechCrunch:
--Claims i2TV Now Reaches 1 Million TV Sets
TellyTopia contacted [itvt] Monday to let us know that its flagship i2TV service (note: the name stands for "Internet-to-TV") is now available in the San Francisco Bay Area on local digital broadcaster KAXT's Channel ONE (1-8) service.
--Brightcove Sales SVP, Mike Quinn, Replaced by Board Member, David Mendels
--BT Vision CEO, Watson, Concedes Service Has Not Been Marketed Effectively
--China Begins Development of National Broadband TV Channel with Interactive Features, UGC
--Citroen Uses Augmented Reality to Promote DS3
--Ustream Teaming with Skype for Anti-Poverty Initiative
--Internet-Exclusive World Cup Soccer Qualifier Attracts Only 500,000 Viewers
Here is a round-up of some other interactive TV-related stories we didn't have room for in this issue:
--Says Openness and Standards-Compliance Are Key to the Joint-OTT Venture
In a posting on a BBC blog, Monday, Richard Halton, director of Project Canvas--the joint over-the-top venture between the BBC, ITV, Five and BT, that seeks to develop a common standard and interface for the delivery of online catch-up services such as the BBC iPlayer and the ITV player, as well as other Internet-based VOD services, to broadband-connected set-top boxes--responded to the criticisms that were levied at the project by BSkyB in a new submission to the BBC's governing body, the BBC Trust (note: Sky's submission, which was the subject of an article in Monday's Financial Times, is available
Cambridge, UK-based IPTV set-top box vendor, Amino Communications, said Monday that it has demo'd an IPTV set-top box powered by the new Intel Atom CE4100 processor. Intel bills the CE4100 (formerly codenamed "Sodaville"), which was unveiled at the recent Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco, as the first 45nm-manufactured consumer electronics SoC based on Intel architecture, as supporting Internet and broadcast applications on one chip, and as having the processing power and audio/video components needed to run rich media applications, such as advanced 3D graphics, HD video, and home theater-quality audio.
--Says It Has No "Immediate Plans" to Bring Similar Team-Specific Apps to Other Markets or Games
AT&T is providing Dallas and Fort Worth-area customers of its Microsoft Mediaroom-powered IPTV service, U-verse TV, with a "Dallas Mavericks Multiview" interactive TV application intended to enhance their viewing of Dallas Mavericks basketball games. The application is a team-specific implementation of the new AT&T U-verse TV Multiview application format that was profiled in an article published on itvt.com, September 14th (note: an example of AT&T U-verse TV's new Sports Multiview application, which has been rolled out nationally, can be seen below).
Broadband video platform provider, Ooyala, last week announced the release of live streaming with real-time analytics for its flagship Backlot platform. According to the company, the new functionality enables its customers to quickly and easily set up a live stream from the same console from which they manage their VOD content, while the company's analytics engine provides real-time viewership statistics from its analytics dashboards.
Multiscreen video-management software solutions provider, ExtendMedia (note: the company recently launched a product called OpenCASE Publisher, which it bills as designed to help cable, telco, satellite, mobile and other video service distributors take advantage of the growing momentum of the "TV Everywhere" distribution model, by providing a platform for them to quickly build and deploy multiscreen video offerings--see article published on itvt.com, August 4th), last week launched a new commerce, subscription and pay-media solution as part of its OpenCASE suite of video management products.
--Includes Open Internet Profile for Over-the-Top-TV Services
The Open IPTV Forum (OIPF)--an industry group that is attempting to bring together telcos, consumer electronics manufacturers, and network infrastructure providers, in order to develop specifications for an open, end-to-end solution that will facilitate development and deployment of interactive, personalized IPTV services (note: the organization, whose founding members include Ericsson, FT Group, Nokia Siemens, Panasonic, Philips, Samsung, Sony and Telecom Italia, recently published the Architecture Specification for IPTV infrastructure elements and services to be included in Release 2 of its OIPF Specifications--