Interactive TV News Round-Up (V): PlayJam, ConTV, Portugal Telecom, Visiware, Rovi,

--Interactive TV Games Company, PlayJam, Partners with ConTV to Target German Connected-TV Space
--Portugal Telecom's MEO Platform Deploys Visiware's Playin'TV Interactive TV Games Portal
--Rovi Launches, Acquires

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been busy this week working on the TV of Tomorrow Show 2011, we are covering recent news in round-up/summary form. We anticipate that it will take us a few days to catch up with all the news we plan to cover: 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.

  • Interactive TV games aggregator, PlayJam, has announced that it has tapped Munich-based connected-TV content specialist, ConTV, to help establish its presence in the German market, as part of an international push that it says will also see it partnering with regional agents in France, the US, Korea, China and Brazil. "A pioneer in over-the-top TV games content, having generated over 6 billion plus downloads during the last five years, PlayJam is at the forefront of the global social-TV revolution, bringing people together and encouraging interaction through the medium of games on TV," the company states in its press materials. "The PlayJam portal is a fully managed games destination with hundreds of fun and engaging casual games designed for all the family. It offers in-house leading brand games, tournaments, competitions and much more. The partnership with ConTV...will enable PlayJam to provide a relevant, localized service for all German-speaking markets as part of its 'Global-Local' content distribution strategy. In addition to sourcing regional games and managing the service locally, the partnership will focus on the promotion of the PlayJam proposition to German representatives of major consumer electronics manufacturers and connected-TV platform owners. ConTV is an end-to-end solution provider for content, application and service owners, maximizing innovative business opportunities on connected-TV screens. The company has been a pioneer in developing apps for connected TV's and hybrid devices and was awarded 1st Winner of the European Samsung Smart TV challenge in Germany." Said PlayJam's business development director, Anthony Johnson: "By establishing a local presence in Germany where over 6 million connected-TV sets are forecast by the end 2011, we're taking our first steps to creating a cross-border social network around games for connected TV. Games are a proven key driver in the adoption of social platforms and by localizing our content in key territories across the globe, we'll ensure PlayJam is positioned at the forefront of the connected home. We are calling on German game developers to embrace the next big platform for social gaming and join the PlayJam network."
  • Paris-based interactive TV games company, Visiware, has announced the launch of its flagship Playin'TV games portal on Portugal Telecom's MEO platform. According to the company, the service is "available at no additional cost to MEO subscribers via satellite," and includes three major games: "Miss Pearl" ("the aim of the game is to help Miss Pearl collect and put away all the pearls of the same color before they fall into the depths of the ocean," Visiware says), "Tactic 2 Vitamin" ("the objective is to align three identical pieces vertically or horizontally to make them disappear," Visiware says. "To do so, the player must select two adjacent pieces in order to switch them around"), and "Incantatris" ("the player must assemble each piece to form as many horizontal lines as possible," Visiware says). According to Visiware, which says that it plans to target the connected-TV space this year, the MEO Playin'TV deployment is its 38th to date.

  • Rovi on Tuesday announced the launch in open beta of a consumer-targeted Web site called, as well as the acquisition of TV Web site, "Using proprietary Rovi technology, including advanced search and recommendation functionality, AllRovi brings one of the largest libraries of music and movie information to the Web--making it easy to find details on favorite artists, actors and films, and discover new music and movies based on mood, genre, chronology, favorites and more," the company states in its press materials. "AllRovi has been designed to offer an original experience based on a rich collection of film and music data that goes back more than 50 years and covers more than three million TV programs, two million album releases, 27 million music tracks and 500,000 movies. By registering for AllRovi, entertainment enthusiasts are able to create a personalized profile. As they explore the site, registered users may receive customized recommendations based on their activity, find favorites, review ratings and make new discoveries based on the entertainment they already enjoy. Additional features include the ability to: 1) Read unique editorial content including blogs, showcased albums and movies, and reviews from seasoned entertainment specialists; 2) Access music samples, music videos and movie trailers; 3) Find out the best sellers, what's 'hot' based on trends in user activity; and 4) Purchase content directly through iTunes and" According to Rovi, the acquisition of claims to offer content on 24,000 shows and 530,000 episodes and which also connects visitors to TV content available online--"expands its online presence from movies, music, games and books to TV content, rounding out the company's ability to deliver a full entertainment discovery experience for consumers on the Web." Said Rovi's VP of marketing, Dave Jordan: "We launched AllRovi to give consumers an immersive entertainment experience--where they can find significant amounts of information, related art, reviews--everything about the films and music they love. By adding the Web site to our online portfolio, we believe Rovi can be the go-to source for finding and enjoying online content."
North America