Interactive TV News Round-Up (X): Suddenlink, Technicolor, TalkTalk, TiVo, Virgin Media, UltraViolet, Ustream

Technicolor MediaNavi media browser

--Suddenlink Offering 3D VOD
--Technicolor Launches Multiscreen Content-Navigation Solution, Secures Deal with TalkTalk
--TiVo News: Virgin Launches TiVo Service, TiVo iPad App to Launch this Month
--DECE Trumpets UltraViolet "Milestones"
--Ustream Partners with Verizon Wireless, Panasonic and Boxee, Launches 10-Foot Version of its Service

Due to the large volume of news generated by the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), which took place last week in Las Vegas, we are covering stories in this issue in summary/round-up form. Our regular news coverage will return shortly.

  • Cable operator, Suddenlink, has announced that it is now offering 3D movies through its VOD service. "The initial menu of Suddenlink 3D on-demand titles includes: 'Bolt,' 'Chicken Little,' 'Jonas Brothers,' 'The Last Airbender,' and 'Scar,'" the company states on its Web site. "New titles will be introduced each month as movie studios make them available."
  • Technicolor has announced the launch of its MediaNavi multiscreen content platform, which it bills as "designed to make navigating the universe of content simple, seamless and social for consumers everywhere" and as being targeted at cable, telco and satellite-TV providers, as well as at CE manufacturers. "Technicolor's MediaNavi user experience is the first cross-platform/cross-operating system user experience geared towards network service providers and consumer electronics manufacturers," the company states in its press materials. "MediaNavi stimulates consumers to discover and enjoy content in a more simple and seamless manner via advanced metadata techniques combined with MediaNavi's new multiscreen, touch-enabled interface. These techniques also enable a backstage view into the content details in a 'TV first,' friendly manner that keeps the detail on the MediaNavi device and the main programming on the consumer's big-screen TV." Technicolor has also announced a partnership with UK ISP, TalkTalk, that it says will see the latter "trial MediaNavi on tablets as a personalized and enriched second-screen video experience." The companies are also working on future integration of MediaNavi into TalkTalk's set-top boxes, Technicolor says. "We are very pleased to be working with Technicolor on the next generation of multiscreen, personalized video solutions," TalkTalk TV director, Max Alexander, said in a prepared statement. "With Technicolor's MediaNavi, we are looking at new ways to provide a consistent approach across multiple devices and to be able to offer our customers a truly premier user interface within a touchscreen tablet device."
  • TiVo has announced that UK cable operator, Virgin Media, has now begun deploying its long-awaited "Virgin Media TV Powered by TiVo" service (which employs metadata from Tribune Media Services). "This deployment marks the first time a cable provider anywhere in the world has offered its customers an advanced cable solution encompassing linear TV, on-demand content and Web-based video with a dedicated broadband connection, rather than having to share bandwidth with other content," TiVo states in its press materials. "As a result, Virgin Media customers using the TiVo-powered set-top box can enjoy the ultimate television entertainment experience through the award-winning TiVo user interface to seamlessly search across all the content sources provided by the UK's number-one cable operator." Said TiVo's VP and general manager for international, Joshua Danovitz: "There is a lot of discussion in the cable industry about the need to provide Internet content to the living room. Unlike current offerings which provide 'best efforts' delivery of Internet video, Virgin Media has redefined the term 'over the top' by providing dedicated bandwidth for these services within the cable video plant and by unifying the consumption experience for end users. As a result of Virgin Media's groundbreaking approach, subscribers with a TiVo-powered set-top box will have access to the best TiVo technology and features at their fingertips enabling all kinds of interactive content to be searched, discovered, and delivered in a truly elegant way."
  • In other TiVo news: 1) The company recently revealed via Twitter (h/t Dave Zatz) that its TiVo Premiere app for iPad (see the article published on itvt.com, December 9th) will be available later this month. 2) The company expects that the HD DVR that it is developing for DirecTV will launch sometime later this year. The product was first announced back in September, 2008, and was originally expected to launch in the second half of 2009. Multichannel News's Todd Spangler has more.
  • Cross-industry consortium, the Digital Entertainment Content Ecosystem (DECE), has announced a series of milestones for its UltraViolet service and format, including a roadmap for introducing UltraViolet content, services and devices to consumers, beginning in mid-2011; plans for expansion into the UK and Canada; and the release of technical specs for evaluation by potential licensees. "UltraViolet will allow consumers to purchase digital content and watch it wherever, whenever," the consortium explains in its press materials. "Consumers who purchase UltraViolet entertainment will have an easy and consistent way to watch film and television content across multiple branded platforms, such as computers, connected TV's, game consoles, smartphones and tablets. The UltraViolet name and logo will help identify content, devices and services from a spectrum of familiar entities--including studios, retailers, consumer electronics manufacturers, cable companies, ISP's and other service providers--that will work together."
  • Live social video specialist, Ustream, has announced partnerships to offer apps through Verizon Wireless, Panasonic and Boxee. "The Ustream mobile application for the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE Mobile Broadband network will combine broadcasting and viewing into a single application and allows users to watch and RSVP to live events, share with social networks and take advantage of the speeds and low latency of the Verizon Wireless 4G LTE broadband network," the company states in its press materials. "The Panasonic Viera Connect Ustream application, a first in live online video, offers instant streaming access of live and recorded content on Panasonic's line of 2011 Viera Connect-enabled HDTV's. Ustream on Boxee gives users access to the most popular live and recorded content in a simple, easy-to-use interface tailored to the big screen." Ustream has also launched the Ustream Lounge, a 10-foot/leanback version of its service, available at ustream.tv/lounge.

 

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