News Round-Up (IX): Tremor Media, Two Way Media-Betfair-Samsung, Ustream, Verizon FiOS TV, Videotron, Widevine-Samsung, Yahoo!-Sony

--Tremor Media Names Ex-Googler, Matthew Corbin, VP of Global Platform Solutions
--Two Way Media Develops Connected TV Betting App for Betfair and Samsung
--Ustream Live Mobilizer Enables Brands, Artists to Launch Custom Ustream iPhone Apps
--Verizon FiOS TV Launches Zona Latina Interactive TV Widget
--Videotron Launches Broadband TV Service
--Widevine in Global Connected TV Deal with Samsung
--Yahoo! Expands Availability of its Interactive TV Widget Platform on Sony Bravia TV's

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been on the road the past few weeks, we are covering recent news stories in summary/round-up form. We anticipate that it will take a couple of days for us to catch up with all the recent news: so if your company has sent us a press release or briefed us on an announcement, and you don't yet see your news covered in this issue, please bear with us. We apologize for any inconvenience to our readers.

  • Online video advertising network operator, Tremor Media (note: the company recently announced a strategic partnership with in-stream video advertising solutions provider, Innovid, to offer interactive pre-roll ads across Tremor Media's network of 1,500+ sites--see the article published on itvt.com, June 7th), has appointed ex-Googler, Matthew Corbin, to the newly created position of VP of global platform solutions. According to the company, Corbin will "lead executive strategy for the monetization of Tremor Media's video platform and network, focusing on the global scale of processes, systems, partner relationships, as well as product requirements and integrations." He previously headed up YouTube's global partnerships and revenue operations for North America, Latin America and the EMEA.
  • UK-based interactive TV applications developer, Two Way Media, contacted [itvt] earlier this week to let us know that it has created an interactive TV application for sports betting company, Betfair TV, that runs on Samsung connected TV's and allows viewers to place bets on current and upcoming soccer matches. Earlier this month (see the article published on itvt.com, June 13th), Betfair TV and Samsung announced a pan-European deal that they say will see them offering a range of interactive TV sports betting and gaming applications on Samsung's connected TV platform: according to Two Way Media, the new soccer betting app is the first in a series of apps that it is developing for Betfair. The company says that the app "receives data live from Betfair's Football Exchange where the markets and odds are constantly updated in line with the action on the pitch," and that it allows viewers to "bet on individual matches or on the result of a whole competition," and to "choose to bet on the winner, correct score, next goal or half-time result." The new app is Two Way Media's first connected TV app.
  • Live Internet streaming company, Ustream, has announced the launch of Ustream Live Mobilizer, an offering that it says is designed to enable "artists, teams, brands and companies" to launch their own customized Ustream apps (complete with live and on-demand video, social TV functionality, iTunes integration, galleries and more) for the Apple iPhone (OS 3.0 and later). Hollywood records is using the new offering to produce an iPhone app for singer, Miley Cyrus.
  • Verizon FiOS TV has announced the launch of Zona Latina, an interactive TV widget that is designed to provide easy access to its Latino/Hispanic-oriented content, including sports, news, free VOD, music, Univision's coverage of the 2010 FIFA World Cup and Verizon's Spanish Language Package. The widget, which also features an interactive guide and promotional information on the $11.99-per-month Spanish Language Package, is available on the FiOS TV Widget home screen and in the featured section of FiOS TV Widgets.
  • Quebec-based cable operator, Videotron, has announced the launch of an authentication-based broadband TV service, called illico web, that is available to customers who subscribe to both its digital TV and its Internet access services. According to the company, the service provides access to 32 linear TV channels and hundreds of hours of on-demand programming in French and English. It also allows customers to program their DVR remotely.
  • Content security and video optimization technology provider, Widevine, has announced that it has signed a global agreement with Samsung to deploy its video optimization (including on-demand adaptive streaming and DVD-like trick-play) and DRM technology on the latter's connected TV's and Blu-ray players. According to the company, its technologies will enable Samsung to "support TV Everywhere and over-the-top delivery initiatives from Internet content providers and large cable, satellite and telecommunication companies." The agreement, which designates Widevine as a "preferred partner," will see its client shipped on millions of Samsung devices this year, the company says, adding that its DRM and adaptive streaming software is already included in 2009 models of Samsung connected TV's and Blu-ray players shipped in the US.
  • Yahoo! has announced the expanded availability of its Yahoo! Widget Engine platform on Sony's Internet-connected Bravia LCD TV's. According to the company, Yahoo!-powered Bravia Internet Widgets--which, among other things, allow users to view videos from Showtime, access sports scores from USA Today, play games, shop on eBay, and communicate via Twitter and Facebook--are now available in over 100 countries across North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia. "Our expanded partnership with Sony increases the number of countries where Yahoo! TV Widgets are available by nearly seven-fold, enabling us to connect millions of additional consumers to compelling Internet content and services right on their TV," Jeff Kinder, Yahoo!'s SVP of media products and solutions, said in a prepared statement.

 

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