Interactive TV News Round-Up (IV): DirecTV, PlayStation 3, Sportsman Channel, FA Cup, Facebook

--DirecTV Enhances NFL Sunday Ticket, Makes it Available on PlayStation 3
--DirecTV Launches Sportsman Channel's VOD Service
--FA Cup Opening Game to Be Streamed Live on Facebook

Because the [itvt] editorial team has been on the road the past few weeks--as well as working on TVOT NYC Intensive 2011--we are covering stories in this issue in round-up/summary format. We anticipate that it will take us a few more 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.

  • DirecTV has announced some interactive enhancements to its NFL Sunday Ticket programming package, as well as the availability of the service on several new platforms, including the Sony PlayStation 3. "DirecTV customers in the US will continue to enjoy live streaming games with NFL Sunday Ticket To-Go on more mobile platforms including, for the first time, Motorola's XOOM and Samsung Galaxy tablets; Motorola's Android phones; the iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Blackberry devices with 3G or WiFi, Palm Pre/Pixi, and other Droid-branded phones," the company states in its press materials. "New this year, both current DirecTV NFL Sunday Ticket customers and fans who can't get DirecTV will have the option of watching their favorite team play every Sunday on TV through the PlayStation 3 computer entertainment system. Also new this year, DirecTV is partnering with to launch an Fantasy Football TV app that will allow fantasy players with connected set-top boxes the unprecedented opportunity to view their Fantasy Football teams and scores directly on their TV screen while watching every game every Sunday afternoon on DirecTV. Fans can view their fantasy lineups and review their head-to-head fantasy scores--all on their TV screen. And by selecting an on-screen 'Watch Now' icon assigned to their fantasy player, the viewer can jump to that player's game in progress. Also this season, fans can tune to a new Mix Channel format for late afternoon games. DirecTV will continue to display its innovative eight-channel Mix when there is a full schedule of Sunday games, but when there are four or fewer games in the afternoon TV window, DirecTV will display a new four-channel mix featuring larger video cells for enhanced viewing.
  • In other DirecTV news: The satellite TV provider has launched Sportsman Channel's VOD service on its DirecTV Cinema platform. According to Sportsman Channel, Sportsman On Demand, as the service is called, will feature original content that can only be seen on VOD. "Sportsman On Demand will be refreshed every two weeks with seasonal and regional content consisting of both short-form and long-form content from the linear channel and original productions," Sportsman Channel states in its press materials. "Customers can watch preferred shows such as 'On Your Own Adventures,' 'Coming Home with Greg Stube,' 'Whitetail Properties' and 'A Hunter's Life,' which are part of Sportsman's recent launch of 25 new original series premieres and 75 new episodes. DirecTV customers must have the Choice Xtra package to download and view Sportsman On Demand titles. Customers can access Sportsman On Demand by connecting their DirecTV HD DVR's to the Internet. Sportsman On Demand is located on ch 1605."
  • English soccer's governing body, the Football Association (FA), is teaming with FA Cup sponsor, Budweiser, to broadcast today's FA Cup opening game between Ascot United and Wembley FC exclusively on Facebook. The game--which the partners claim will be the first game ever to be broadcast live on Facebook--will be streamed via an app on Budweiser's UK Facebook page. The live streaming coverage is scheduled to begin at 7:30PM British Summer Time.
North America