News Round-Up

--ADB Announces SCTE Cable-Tec Expo Exhibit Plans
--Comcast Exec Says EBIF/Interactive TV Roll-Out Proceeding on Schedule
--Comcast's "TV Everywhere" Trial Now Involves 10,000 Viewers
--Concurrent Reports Lower Revenues, Swings to a $1 Million Loss
--HealthiNation in VOD Deal with AT&T U-verse TV
--Highfield: BBC Should Consider Charging for iPlayer Content
--IneoQuest Launches Vendor-Agnostic VOD Monitoring Tool
--Motorola Launches Solution for Scaling On-Demand Catalogs across Multiple Screens
--Netpulse Raises $3.1 Million for its Interactive Media Platform for Fitness Centers
--Pace Says New HCS Multiroom DVR to Launch with Multiple Operators
--Sky Player Xbox Launch Delayed Due to Technical Problems

Here is a round-up of some other interactive TV-related stories we didn't have room for in this issue (as well as stories from the CTAM Summit in Denver, which our editorial team was unable to attend):

  • Geneva-based set-top box company, Advanced Digital Broadcast (ADB), has announced its exhibit plans for this week's SCTE Cable-Tec Expo. According to the company, it will "demonstrate how it enables operators deliver the promises of tru2way together with an enhanced consumer TV experience for linear and on-demand entertainment services," and will "display how it is making television, Internet and personal content converge and be accessible where consumers enjoy it most: on their flat-screen TV."
  • Comcast has deployed simple interactive TV applications, such as voting and polling apps, to between 60 and 65% of its cable homes, the MSO's senior director of video product development, James Mumma, stated during a CTAM Summit session in Denver, Tuesday, according to an article by Steve Donohue in Cable Digital News. Mumma also said that Comcast and the other cable operators behind Canoe Ventures, the company set up to realize the US cable industry's interactive and advanced advertising strategy, are on schedule to deploy EBIF to 25 million set-tops by the end of the year.
  • During a CTAM general session entitled "Cable's Consumer Product Agenda," Comcast CTO, Tony Werner, revealed that the MSO's trial of On Demand Online, its implementation of the "TV Everywhere" distribution model, now involves approximately 10,000 viewers. Coverage of the session is available here and here.
  • VOD technology provider, Concurrent, has announced results for its fiscal first quarter (2010), ended September 30th. Revenue was $12.8 million, vs $18.3 Million for the year-ago quarter; and net losses were $1 million, or $0.12 per diluted share, compared to net income of $93,000, or $0.01 per diluted share, for the year-ago quarter. "Our video-on-demand business continued to be impacted by reduced spending by our top two North American MSO customers which led to lower revenues in the first quarter," Concurrent president and CEO, Dan Mondor, said in a prepared statement. "The impact on revenue was due to delays in implementing new projects in combination with utilization of existing VOD capacity, not cancellation of orders or loss of market share. In fact the video-on-demand market is experiencing double digit growth in consumer viewing. We believe our first half of fiscal 2010 will be the bottom of this spending slow-down."
  • Health video company, HealthiNation, has announced a deal to offer its videos on AT&T U-verse TV's VOD platform.
  • Ashley Highfield, the BBC's former head of Future Media and Technology who is now managing director of consumer and online at Microsoft UK, says that the BBC should consider charging for content on the BBC iPlayer, according to an article in The Guardian.
  • IneoQuest Technologies has announced IQDialogue MSO VOD, a vendor-agnostic quality monitoring and service assurance tool for the delivery of VOD services. According to the company, the solution "provides an easy-to-understand, holistic view of the provider's VOD service in real time. Implementing IQDialogue MSO VOD probes at critical network points," the company says, "MSO's can monitor, analyze and log data across multiple traffic flows, from the servers to set-top boxes, to locate the exact cause of a failure along the network, receive event notifications immediately and conduct true end-to-end fault correlation."
  • Motorola has announced the commercial availability of its Communications Convergence Engine Enhanced Asset Management System (CCE EAMS). "Through advanced metadata management tools and workflow management," the company says, "CCE EAMS controls the lifecycle of video-on-demand (VOD), non-VOD content and advertising assets within the on-demand network" and "delivers on Motorola's global commitment to helping service providers deliver compelling and differentiating on-demand services across multiple screens--TV, Web, mobile and consumer electronics." According to the company, the platform allows "video service providers to scale their on-demand catalogs to 'infinite catalogs' by solving the operational and capital expenditure challenges involved in storing and processing the multiple multimedia asset formats required for growing subscriber demand."
  • Netpulse, a company that claims to offer "the only interactive media platform for fitness centers and active lifestyle consumers," says that it has secured $3.1 million in a Series A funding round that was led by Javelin Venture Partners and saw the participation of DFJ Frontier. The company says it will use the new funding to further develop its platform, which is designed to be integrated into fitness equipment and cardiovascular machines, and which it says will provide "access to live high-definition television, on-demand videos and music, iPod/ iPhone connectivity, personalized workout data, and connection to social media in a personalized user experience that is universally compatible with all exercise equipment."
  • Pace has announced that multiple cable operators, including Buckeye Cablevision, Mediacom and Sunflower Broadband, are nearing completion of field trials of its Home Content Sharing (HCS) multiroom DVR solution, and that the National Cable Television Cooperative has agreed to offer the product to its members. For more on the solution, which Pace claims can deliver nine simultaneous HD streams throughout the home and allows users to concurrently record six HD programs while maintaining full trick-mode capability, see the article published on itvt.com, October 27th.
  • Sky Player was supposed to launch on the Xbox Tuesday, but didn't. Sky has issued the following statement: "The service has been suspended due to an unforeseen technical issue. Sky Player engineers are hard at work to resolve the problem. We expect to have the full service available on Wednesday."

 

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