HSN, Oberon Media, Static2358 (PlayJam), Muzu.tv Announce Widgets for Samsung's Internet@TV

A number of companies last week announced plans to offer interactive TV applications on supported Samsung HDTV's, Blu-ray players and Home Theater Systems through Samsung's recently updated Internet@TV over-the-top (OTT) platform, and its newly announced Samsung Apps app store service (note: for more on the latter, see the article published on itvt.com, January 7th). They include:

  • HSN, which is launching its HSN Shop by Remote app on the platform. According to the company, the free app, which will allow viewers to access live streaming HSN video and make purchases using their remote controls, will be included in the first group of apps to be offered on Samsung Apps, which is slated to launch in the spring. The company says that it will offer a full-screen mode and will feature the following categories: Current On Air Item (i.e. details on the item currently being showcased live on HSN), Today's Special (i.e. an item available at an exclusive special retail price for the day), Deal of the Day (described by HSN as "a must-have item that has never been discounted before" and that "will be unveiled daily at a special rate"), and Last 15 Items Aired (i.e. a functionality that allows viewers to browse a list of the last 15 items featured on air). "As the original TV retailer, HSN has been at the forefront of interactive television and transactional innovation for decades," HSN's VP of advanced services, John McDevitt, said in a prepared statement. "This latest partnership with Samsung will continue our tradition of developing new ways to engage consumers by allowing us to reach an audience that does not otherwise have access to our Shop By Remote service."
  • Oberon Media, which plans to launch a number of its interactive TV games on the platform, beginning with the casual game, "Dream Day Wedding." According to the company, the game will be offered for download and purchase on Samsung Apps when the latter's transactional capabilities are rolled out later this year. Oberon says that its interactive TV division has created a dedicated version of "Dream Day Wedding" exclusively for the Samsung living room environment and remote control. "Dream Day Wedding," which was developed by Oberon's publishing division, I-play, has already reached over 60 million casual gamers through PC, console and mobile platforms, the company says: it invites players to solve puzzles and find wedding items hidden in multiple scenes as they help its heroine prepare for her big day, and features 25 levels in 13 locations. According to Oberon, the game features "beautiful imagery" that "lends itself to HDTV," and that thus made the game the top choice for Oberon's and Samsung's first joint project. "Providing games to Samsung connected TV users is part of our strong three-screen relationship with Samsung, which also covers games for mobile handsets and PC's," Oberon's senior director of ITV business partnerships, Sharon Rosenman, said in a prepared statement. "Oberon's interactive TV games catalog includes hundreds of market-proven games designed for the TV screen and the remote control, and based around hit casual game brands. Samsung's HDTV's serve as an ideal platform for this content. We look forward to rolling out additional titles on Samsung's Internet@TV throughout 2010."
  • Static2358, which says that it has selected its PlayJam interactive TV games service's most popular games over the years for porting to the Samsung platform, including free and pay-to-play casual and skill-based games that will collectively target a broad demographic. According to the company, its interactive TV game widgets "offer an enhanced user experience by providing faster and simpler access to additional key game features such as user accounts, leader boards, points and a variety of competitions to enter." "We're really excited to be working with Samsung at the forefront of the Internet-enabled TV era," Static2358 CEO, Jasper Smith, said in a prepared statement. "Bringing the engaging PlayJam experience to millions of TV sets in multiple countries will significantly fuel further growth of the brand, especially in the run-up to the 2010 World Cup." (Note: Static2358/PlayJam also announced last week plans to launch a "connected games network of in excess of 450 million devices over the next few years through some of the world’s largest broadcasters, cable operators, consumer electronics manufacturers, mobile platforms and online gaming operators"--for more, see the News Round-Up article in this issue.)
  • Irish music video Web site operator, Muzu.tv, which plans to offer a specially created application that it says will allow users to search, browse and watch music videos, and will offer such content categories as Most Popular and Recently Added, as well as genre-based browsing. In addition, the company says, the app will allow users to create and save their own video playlists on the Muzu.tv Web site and access them on the TV via a My Videos option; and will also offer multiple pre-populated playlists--such as the Top 40--that will automatically be updated on a weekly basis. Muzu.tv claims that its service is differentiated by the fact that it provides artists whose videos are viewed on its site with a share of net advertising revenue. According to the company, for the Samsung deployment "ad revenue will be generated via a premium CPM advertising format known as In-Skin. Effectively," the company says, "In-Skin enables brands to get their message across by wrapping ads around the outside of video players, meaning the viewer is free to watch all videos completely uninterrupted."


North America