News Round-Up (VII): SureWest, TeliaSonera-Spotify, thePlatform-Canwest-CBC

--SureWest Launches Caller ID on TV, Online DVR Manager Apps, Selects BigBand SDV Solution
--TeliaSonera Becomes First Pay-TV Platform to Offer Spotify
--thePlatform Powering Broadband Video for Canwest, CBC

The [itvt] editorial team is on the road this week, so we are covering most stories in round-up/summary form, and we anticipate that there will be some additional interruptions of our regular news publishing schedule beyond that. We apologize in advance for any inconvenience to our readers.

  • SureWest Communications, an integrated communications provider that serves markets in Northern California and the Kansas City region, has announced the roll-out of caller ID on TV and online DVR manager services to customers of its Sacramento-area Microsoft Mediaroom-powered IPTV service, Advanced Digital TV. According to the company, the caller ID app is offered free of charge to "qualifying residential triple-play customers." The company describes its operation as follows: "When a call comes in, a small, transparent bar will appear across the top of the TV screen with the information sent that identifies the number and person calling. [Viewers] can choose to pause their TV programming to answer the call, or let it go to their SureWest Digital Phone voicemail." The online DVR manager app, meanwhile, is available free of charge to Advanced Digital TV customers who have a DVR and a Digital Basic package or higher, SureWest says. The app "allows customers to manage their DVR remotely from a Web-connected computer, including scheduling new recordings, editing or canceling previously scheduled recordings, or deleting recordings," the company states in its press materials. "Customers can choose to record single episodes or entire series in the same way they do at home." In other SureWest news: The company has selected BigBand's switched digital video (SDV) solution for deployment on its Kansas City networks, where it says it will enable expansion of its HDTV service, and "pave the way" for IPTV services.
  • Music streaming service, Spotify, has secured its first TV deployment: TeliaSonera is making the service available, via a new interactive TV app, to its digital TV customers in Sweden and Finland. "The app will be available to TeliaSonera digital TV customers who have subscribed to the Spotify Premium service," Spotify wrote on its corporate blog last week. "The app gives you access to a streamlined version of our music application that can be used to listen to Spotify playlists on your TV screen via the TeliaSonera remote control...If you have a digital TV box from TeliaSonera that supports Spotify, it will be automatically updated with the new app and you can log in with your existing Spotify Premium account."
  • Comcast-owned white label broadband video publishing company, thePlatform, has announced that it is powering broadband video services for two major Canadian media companies: Canwest (properties include GlobalTV) and the CBC. The company's other Canadian customers include Rogers and Corus. It has published detailed case studies on its work with Canwest and CBC, which can be found here.


North America