interactive tv

Miniweb Launches "TV Key" Service on Sky

Miniweb--a company which offers a service, dubbed "TV Key," that
enables broadcasters and advertisers to repurpose Internet content as
interactive enhancements to their shows or commercials on
broadband-connected set-top boxes, thus providing an inexpensive way
to launch interactive TV services (note: the company was founded by
former BSkyB ITV executive, Ian Valentine, who spun the company
off from the satellite provider and now serves as its CEO; its
technology is based on the BSkyB-developed WTVML standard and
was originally used to power the operator's Skynet service)--has
launched its service on the Sky platform.
"Today's launch on Sky

Project Canoe Officially Launched as Canoe Ventures

--David Verklin Appointed as New Venture's CEO

The contours of Project Canoe, the US cable industry's hitherto
secretive initiative to create a national unified platform for interactive
and addressable advertising, became a little clearer last week when the
MSO's behind the initiative announced the launch of a joint venture,
Canoe Ventures, and the appointment of advertising industry veteran,
David Verklin, as the new venture's CEO.
Verklin, who will join Canoe
Ventures on August 4th, will be tasked with leading its efforts to create
shared processes and standards for audience targeting, interactivity and
measurement in multiplatform advertising across cable systems

BBC Outlines its Interactive TV Plans for 2008/2009

--Round-Up of Recent BBC Interactive and Broadband TV News

In its latest "Statements of Programme Policy" document, the BBC has
outlined its plans for its BBCi interactive TV service in 2008 and 2009.
Perhaps most notably, those plans include exploring the use of IP to
enhance single-screen interactive TV content. The document lays out
the plans in five key areas:

Consortium Developing Standard for Radio Frequency-Based Remotes

Consumer electronics giants, Philips, Samsung, Sony and Panasonic,
announced last week that they are collaborating on the development of
a standardized specification for radio frequency-based remote controls
for audio-visual consumer electronics devices.
Together with Freescale
Semiconductors, OKI and Texas Instruments, the companies have
formed an RF4CE (stands for "Radio Frequency for Consumer
Electronics") Consortium that will attempt to create a new protocol to

enable the development of radio frequency remote controls that offer
richer communication, increased reliability and more flexible use.

DIVA Consortium Launches in China

--Group is Developing New Interface for Interactive TV and CE Networking

An industry group called the DIVA Consortium was officially launched
last month in Guangzhou at the 2008 China Digital Living Forum &
Showcase, an event targeted at the Chinese consumer electronics
The charter members of the new consortium include a number
of major Chinese consumer electronics and home appliance
manufacturers, such as TCL; Chang Hong Electric; Skyworth Group;
Hisense Electric; Konka Group; Haier; SVA Information Industry;
Panda Electronics; and Synerchip.

itaas's Rustagi and TVWorks' Thomson on the Companies' New ETV/tru2way Partnership

DISH Network Execs Discuss the Company's New ITV Advertising Deal with NBC Universal


In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of
Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," Michael Finn, VP of
advertising sales at DISH Network, and Scott Higgins, the company's
director of interactive programming, discuss DISH's new interactive
TV advertising deal with NBC Universal, and the company's plans to
make increasing use of the DVR hard drive for its interactive TV

To listen to the show,
click here.

[itvt] Radio: Jim Louderback, CEO of Revision3

In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of
Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," sponsored by TiVo, Jim
, CEO of Revision3, provides an overview of his
company--which bills itself as "an actual TV network for the Web,"
and which produces its own original, broadcast-quality programming.

Topics discussed include funding, download numbers, revenues,
demographics, distribution strategy, content strategy, advertising

[itvt] Interview: Tara Maitra, VP and General Manager of Content Services at TiVo

As VP and general manager of content services at TiVo, Tara Maitra is in charge of the company's broadband content strategy--which sees it aggregating a line-up of downloadable movies and programming through partnerships with Amazon and around 60 other content providers, and also enabling subscribers to its service to access video from the open Internet via a PC connected to their TiVo device. The company also recently announced a deal with YouTube that will enable its subscribers to access YouTube videos directly from their TV set via their DVR.

[itvt] Radio: Review of the 2008 NCTA Cable Show

In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of
Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," a panel of interactive TV
experts--Steve Borelli, VP of marketing and business development at
Integra5; industry analyst, Leslie Ellis (author of the popular
Multichannel News column, "Translation Please"); Will Kreth, director

of product management for interactive TV at Time Warner Cable; Alex

DirecTV Rolls Out Multiple Interactive TV Services

--Forms Audience-Measurement Partnership with TNS

US satellite TV provider, DirecTV, continues to roll out interactive TV
services as an integral part of its sports coverage and of its service
offering in general (note: the company is also expected to launch a
VOD service this quarter; a report in the Wall Street Journal stated that
the service will employ a combination of push-VOD and broadband
technologies: a small selection of popular titles will be pushed to
subscribers' DVR's, while around 3,000 titles will be available via those
DVRs' broadband connections, the newspaper said). Among the

Shalom TV Launches National VOD Service on Comcast

Shalom TV, a TV channel devoted to Jewish culture, has launched a
line-up of free programming on Comcast On Demand--marking, the
channel says, the first time that a major US cable operator has offered a
Jewish-themed channel as part of its national VOD line-up--as well as
on Time Warner Cable of New York and New Jersey's VOD service.

The channel's programming includes Jewish-themed English-language
films, subtitled Israeli films, news and public affairs coverage, cultural
and celebrity shows, shows devoted to Torah study, and original
children's shows. "Comcast is committed to delivering programming
that reflects the diverse interests of our customers, and Shalom TV does

Liquidus Officially Launches its VOD Classifieds Offering

Liquidus, a Chicago-based company that has actually been working on
VOD classified advertising with Comcast Spotlight since 2005 (note:
last fall, it signed a five-year deal with the MSO), recently emerged
from semi-stealth mode and officially launched its flagship products for
transforming still images into video-enabled classified ads (via such
techniques as pans and zooms, and the insertion of graphics, music and
voiceovers), and for then distributing them.
The company, which says it
is now providing VOD advertising services to a number of cable
companies in addition to Comcast (including Bresnan, Bright House,
Charter, Cox and Time Warner Cable), claims that the products are

Ofcom Moves to Tighten Regulation of Participation TV

Following the UK's recent participation TV scandal, that country's
broadcast regulator, Ofcom, has proposed new rules to tighten
regulation of TV and radio programs that rely heavily on premium-rate
telephone services (PRS).
The body says that its proposed changes to
the UK's Broadcasting Code will "ensure that programs that invite
viewers and listeners to interact or participate are not vehicles for
promoting commercial, revenue-generating services," and will also
"ensure that viewers are adequately protected and that advertising is
kept separate from editorial content, as required under European

The new rules state that when PRS is used in a program for audience

Time Warner Cable of NY & NJ Launches Start Over-Enabled "Enhanced HDTV"

Time Warner Cable of New York and New Jersey has announced plans
to expand its HDTV programming line-up, which it says will see it
carrying 100 HD channels and "more than 250 HD On Demand
choices" by the end of the year. The company is launching what it is
calling "Enhanced HDTV," a free offering that includes Start Over (i.e
the ability to start a program over during its allotted timeslot, without a
DVR) for both high- and standard-definition programs.
It claims that
customers with HD-enabled set-top boxes will be able to Start Over
more than 13,000 SD and around 1,500 HD choices per month at no
additional charge. "By delivering the most HD choices and Enhanced

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