News Round-Up

Ravenholdt Labyrinth (Interactive WoW Adventure)

--Apple Said to Be Pitching Subscription-Based OTT Service to Programmers
--Cisco Acquires Set-Top Box Business of China's DVN
--DISH Asks Appeals Court to Let It Offer DVR Service
--iN Demand: November to Be a Record Month for Day-&-Date VOD Movies
--Interactive "World of Warcraft" Machinima Uses YouTube Annotations

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

  • According to a report by All Things Digital's Peter Kafka, "multiple sources" are telling him that Apple is "trying to round up support for a monthly subscription service that would deliver TV programs via its multimedia software." The service would be an extension of Apple's iTunes software and store, Kafka writes. However, while "Apple has told industry executives it wants to launch the service early next year," Kafka continues, he concedes that he has "yet to hear of a single programmer that has made a firm commitment to the company."
  • Cisco has announced a deal to acquire the set-top box business of Chinese digital cable technology company, DVN. The deal will see Cisco paying up to $44.5 million, of which $17.5 million will be paid upfront and $27 million will be paid over four years, based on the achievement of various sales milestones. The deal also sees Cisco forming a "go-to-market alliance" with the rump of DVN "in order to utilize the company's middleware and advanced applications, as well as integration and support services." The company claims that the alliance will provide joint customers with "unparalleled end-to-end capabilities through the evolution from basic digital broadcast to advanced interactive services."
  • DISH Network and EchoStar are currently attempting to persuade a federal appeals court to overturn a lower court ruling that DISH must stop offering a DVR service that the lower court has ruled infringes on TiVo's so-called "Time Warp" patent. Bloomberg News has more.
  • VOD content distributor, iN Demand, says that "November 2009 is a record month for movies premiering on cable's Movies on Demand (MOD) the same day as their home video DVD release (day & date), signifying a sea change in the popularity of the MOD platform." According to iN Demand EVP, David Asch, over the past three years the company has seen "a more than seven-fold increase in the number of titles offered to cable's Movies On Demand the same time as DVD."
  • A group of machinima artists have created an interactive machinima video for "World of Warcraft" enthusiasts, using YouTube's Annotations feature. The video, entitled "Ravenholdt Labyrinth," is embedded above. (H/t


North America