Interactive TV News Roundup

  • The spat between Time Warner Cable and Viacom over whether the MSO has rights to distribute live programming to subscribers using Apple's iPad has entered a Manhattan courtroom. Time Warner Cable filed a request for declaratory judgment, asking the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York to rule that it has rights to deliver MTV, Comedy Central and the feeds from other Viacom networks to subscribers in their own homes. In a countersuit, Viacom tells the court that Time Warner could negotiate rights to deliver programming to the iPad and other devices without passing along additional costs to subscribers. More
  • ESPN launched a fee app for Apple's iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch that allows subscribers of Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, and Verizon's FiOS TV to watch live programming from its flagship network, ESPN2, ESPNU and ESPN3.com. The WatchESPN app isn't yet available on Android devices, but ESPN said it will develop similar apps for other smartphones and tablets "in the near future." The application ranked as the fourth most popular free app in Apple's iTunes store on Saturday. 

  • Motorola is looking to boost revenue from pay TV providers with a new "SocialTV Companion Service" aimed at marketing products to subscribers through the Web, smartphones and tablets. Motorola first demonstrated its social TV products last May at The Cable Show convention in Los Angeles. Part of its Medios portfolio, the SocialTV service allows subscribers to access video content on multiple platforms, and interact with friends and family on social networks. Motorola says service providers will be able to drive new revenue from marketing products related to TV programs to subscribers, on-screen ads and by adding loyalty rewards programs. More
  • Ericsson is pitching service providers a new centralized management system for delivering video across multiple devices. Its Media Delivery Management System, on display this week at the National Association of Broadcasters convention in Las Vegas, relies on cloud computing for increased capacity and supports third-party apps and services. More
  • Strategy & Technology said it plans to pitch its interactive TV technology to set-top manufacturers next week at the NAB convention. The UK-based firm, which has its Redkey 3 engine deployed in more than 14 million digital TV receivers, said it has deals with several European broadcasters, including Canal+, TF1, ARD, RTL and ProSiebenSat.1. S&T said it will also demonstrate an application based on the MHEG-IC spec that enables the delivery of customizable over-the-top video.  More
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