News Round-Up (VI): Mirada, Ericsson, Nagravision (OpenTV), EchoStar Europe, NDS

--Mirada to Integrate Navi EPG with Ericsson's IPTV Middleware
--Nagravision Field-Tests OpenTV nX with Zon TVCabo, Ports OpenTV Middleware to New EchoStar Europe DVR
--NDS News: First Field Trial for Snowflake, Low-Cost DVR-Like STB's, PAKT Deal, Jungo USB Solution for STB's

Due to the huge volume of interactive TV-related news generated over the past few days by the IBC, we are covering stories in this issue in round-up format. 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. Our regular news coverage will return shortly.

  • Anglo-Spanish interactive TV company, Mirada, will announce this week that it has formed a partnership with Ericsson (information on whose IBC exhibit line-up can be seen here) to integrate its Navi EPG with the latter's IPTV middleware, according to a report in the UK newspaper, The Independent.
  • Kudelski-owned Nagravision has announced that it will work with Portuguese pay-TV platform, Zon TVCabo, to field-test a "next-generation user experience solution based on OpenTV nX, Nagravision's cross-device user interface" (note: Kudelski gained full control of OpenTV late last year--see the article published on, November 16th). "The OpenTV nX user interface was specially designed for next-generation set-top boxes and can also run on ZON's installed legacy base," Nagravision states in its press materials. "The result of more than five years of research and development into user interface design, OpenTV nX is Nagravision's cross-device user experience selected by ZON TVCabo to provide a universal interface that integrates traditional broadcast television with locally stored and Internet media, as well as on-demand content. It is tailored for different devices and device capabilities, allowing service providers like ZON to customize it according to their unique requirements and end-users to personalize it according to their preferences. With the myriad of content choices facing consumers today--from linear TV, timeshifted TV, video-on-demand and Internet video, OpenTV nX simplifies the process of content discovery through an easy-to-use and consistent user interface. It places video content where consumers want it, and combines recommendations, universal search and social networking to expose relevant, rich and exciting content. The award-winning OpenTV nX is designed to work with just five buttons on a traditional remote control, providing a heads-up approach to navigation that is missing from many other interfaces. It can also be extended across other devices such as PC's, smartphones and tablets to take advantage of functionality such as multi-touch screen to further extend the experience." In other Nagravision news: The company says that it has worked with EchoStar Europe to port OpenTV Linux-based client middleware to the EchoStar HDX-600R hybrid DVR. "OpenTV middleware provides core Linux-based operating software for set-top boxes (STB's) and supports a rich feature set from linear TV to home networking," the company states in its press materials. "The solution supports a full range of connected devices from entry-level STB's to advanced DVR's and home gateways across all network types (cable, satellite, IPTV, terrestrial) including hybrid. It also supports multiple application environments including HTML, Adobe Flash, SVG and comes with a pre-integrated application suite for EPG, DVR supporting cable VOD, IPTV VOD, OTT adaptive streaming or progressive download VOD, and other value-added applications such as Nagra Media Widgets."
  • Interactive TV and conditional access technology provider, NDS, has announced that Portuguese pay-TV operator, Zon Multimedia (operates Zon TVCabo), will field-trial a new TV platform based on the NDS Snowflake user interface. This represents the first-ever field trial of Snowflake. "Designed by NDS Studio Design, NDS Snowflake provides a robust UI backbone for operators looking to launch a branded interface offering improved ease of use to the viewer including the ability to control TV content remotely via smartphones and other connected devices," NDS states in its press materials. "Able to enhance the TV experience across numerous devices, NDS Snowflake can also deliver new community-based social networking features, applications and widgets to subscribers via content-driven recommendations. This capability means that operators are then able to generate increased revenue from premium content and other recommendations relevant to subscriber interests." In other NDS news: 1) The company has announced that it has combined its MediaHighway set-top box software with SanDisk P4 solid state drives in order to enable a new range of lower-cost set-top boxes with DVR-like functionality. "By provisioning a set-top box with a small amount of storage, operators can introduce new revenue-generating features such as live-pause and video-on-demand (VOD) with the ability to enable home networking functionality and advanced advertising solutions, including ad substitution," the company states in its press materials. "The new solution also allows for the deployment of energy-efficient STB's with decreased power consumption, small form factors and virtually silent operation." 2) Russian cable operator, PAKT, has selected NDS VideoGuard Express to protect and power its digital cable service. 3) The company's Jungo subsidiary has launched a set-top box USB connectivity software solution which it says connects a standard set-top to any home or wireless network via USB. "By utilizing the STB's USB port, which is standard on the majority of new devices, the Jungo solution extends the active life of the STB by enabling it to support new, ARPU-generating services," NDS states in its press materials. "These include video-on-demand (VOD), video streaming, broadcast-Internet convergence and interactive services that require a return path."