Interactive TV News Round-Up (V): Time Warner Cable, Fox, TiVo, Best Buy

--Time Warner Cable to Offer Fox Programming on Primetime On Demand
--TiVo to Begin $100 Million Stock Repurchase Program
--TiVo-Powered Insignia TV's Now Available at Best Buy

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been on the road the past few weeks, we are covering stories in this issue in round-up/summary format. We anticipate that it will take us several days 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.

  • Time Warner Cable has announced a deal to make standard- and high-definition Fox primetime programming available on its Primetime On Demand VOD platform. Primetime On Demand, a free service which also features programming from ABC, CBS and NBC, disables fast-forwarding in order to prevent ad skipping.
  • TiVo has announced that its board of directors has authorized a stock repurchase plan that will see it buying back up to $100 million of its outstanding common shares over a two-year period. The company says that the program will be funded through its existing cash reserves. Said president and CEO, Tom Rogers: "We believe that the repurchase of our common stock represents one effective use of our capital and underscores our commitment to maximize value for our shareholders, given the significant recent market weakness and the cash on our current balance sheet as well as our NOL position. We are confident in our future growth prospects and believe we have the right elements in place and resources available to drive long-term value for our shareholders."
  • In other TiVo news: 1) Earlier this month, the company announced that Best Buy is launching connected TV's under its Insignia brand that feature TiVo's user interface. "Through this product, TiVo continues its evolution from a DVR by bringing its expertise and easy-to-use interface to the new connected-TV space, helping consumers get more out of their television experience by integrating Internet content with their existing cable or satellite offerings," the company states in its press materials. "Consumers will be able to purchase the new televisions at select Best Buy retail locations and online beginning August 1. The Insignia Connected TV will be the first television on the market that combines the power of the Internet with the legendary TiVo user interface and certain search capabilities, all in stunning high definition, creating a top-flight advanced television experience. Users will be able to enjoy content from both traditional linear TV and the Internet--all packaged in TiVo's easy-to-use interface and easily navigated with a few simple clicks of their remote control. Insignia Connected TV users will have access to a wide range of Web-based entertainment and can enjoy movies from Netflix and CinemaNow, music from Pandora and Napster, and much more. A component to the ease and simplicity of using the Insignia Connected TV is the inclusion of many of TiVo's user-friendly search and discovery capabilities which allow a user to search broadband video content by title, actor, director, keyword and more." The TiVo-powered Insignia connected TV's--which are branded as the Insignia Connected TV with TiVo Design, and which do not offer DVR functionality--are priced at $499.99 for a 32-inch version and $699.99 for a 42-inch version. 2) A recent FCC filing by the company provides some details about its planned quad-tuner TiVo Premiere Elite DVR. Gadget blogger, Dave Zatz, has more.
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