ANT Surpasses 10 Million Units Deployed

--Launches IPTV Application-Development Community for its ANT Galio Platform
--New Deals with Exterity, Chunghwa Telecom Laboratories

UK-based digital TV client software provider, ANT, announced last month that it has surpassed 10 million units deployed worldwide. It claims that the figure means that its ANT Fresco and ANT Galio products are now among the most widely deployed IPTV platforms in the world. Its operator customers include Chunghwa Telecom, France Telecom, Hansenet and Telecom Italia; it has also licensed its software to a number of well-known device manufacturers, including Amino, Cisco, Coship, Daewoo, HwaCom, Hyundai Digital Technology, Pirelli, Sagem, Samsung and Thomson. "2008 was a positive year for ANT with deployments exceeding three million units," the company's EVP of sales and marketing, Richard Baker, said in a prepared statement (note: for an in-depth interview with Baker, see [itvt] Issue 7.80). "ANT is well positioned to build on this as the market continues to grow. We're also extremely pleased with the market response to the launch of ANT Galio 3.0. Since we announced ANT Galio 3.0 in September last year, a number of existing customers have migrated to the latest version and new licensees continue to select ANT. Our standards-based approach enables more flexibility when developing innovative new applications which are increasingly being requested by operators."

Also last month, ANT announced the launch of the "ANT Academy," which it bills as an application-development community for connected TV services. The company says that the community will identify and enable "next-generation TV experiences," based on the ANT Galio platform. The initial line-up of members includes two academic institutions--Georgia Tech Research Institute and Anglia Ruskin University--and IPTV technology and content vendors, Accedo Broadband, CloverLeaf Digital, Datmedia, MiCard, Two Way Media, Vizimo and weComm. "The ANT Academy will support members in reaching mass market with innovative applications and services," ANT's Richard Baker said in a prepared statement. "We're supporting the community with a range of tools including the ANT Academy portal, an online resource that provides forums, sample code and technical specifications to help members develop to ANT's standards-based platform and to reach a global audience. Whilst providing technical and operational support, ANT Academy will, in parallel, promote close ongoing commercial and business relationships between members. These relationships will advance a new economy for TV commerce and leverage ANT's extensive global deployment experience."

In other recent news from ANT:
--In February, the company announced that Exterity has licensed the ANT Galio 3.0 browser for use in IPTV systems targeting the education, corporate and hospitality markets. According to ANT, Galio 3.0 is a standards-based solution that offers high performance in a small memory footprint and that allows customers to develop complex interactive TV applications quickly and easily, using existing knowledge and off-the-shelf tools. "By opting to incorporate ANT Galio 3.0 into our hardware, we can offer our reseller partners a highly competitive, cost-effective solution," Exterity CEO, Colin Farquhar, said in a prepared statement. "Furthermore, we can enable our customers to create more compelling enterprise applications for the TV and also more visually creative and impactful user interfaces."
--Also in February, the company announced that Chunghwa Telecom Laboratories, the research-and-development arm of the eponymous telco, has chosen the ANT Galio browser as the user interface platform upon which it will develop a successor to Chunghwa Telecom's Multimedia on Demand (MOD) service. The current version of the service, which has around 695,000 subscribers in Taiwan, uses ANT's first-generation browser, ANT Fresco, to provide a range of services, including broadcast TV channels, on-demand movies, and interactive applications. The relationship between ANT and Chunghwa dates back to 2004, when the telco first launched the MOD service. "We're delighted that Chunghwa Telecom Laboratories has chosen to build on the existing partnership with ANT," Sean Kim, ANT's VP and general manager for the Asian and Russian markets, said in a prepared statement. "With constant research and development into IPTV, Chunghwa is a leader in this market and continues to demonstrate a commitment to improving their service and delivering the most advanced end-user experience, something both companies recognize the importance of. The Asian market is of strategic importance to ANT's growth and we continue to sign major deals with both telecom operators and device manufacturers in the region."