Interactive TV News Round-Up (V): PayWizard, RCDb, Verimatrix

--PayWizard Adds Voucher Capability, Free Account-to-Account Transfers to its DTV Payment Platform
--RCDb Launches WatchWith Service Delivery Platform for OTT TV Distribution
--RCDb, Verimatrix Team to Deliver Premium Video to LG Connected TV's, Blu-ray Players

Due to the large volume of news generated by the IFA, IBC and CEDIA trade shows--and because the [itvt] editorial team has been 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 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.

  • PayWizard, a UK company that specializes in payment solutions for digital TV, contacted [itvt] Thursday to let us know that it has added a voucher capability and free account-to-account transfers to its payment platform. The company is demo'ing the new features at IBC 2011 (Stand 13.185). "Content owners and other merchants can now generate and manage vouchers, including merchant-specific promotional vouchers which can be usage- or time-limited," the company states in its press materials. "The viewer is thereby encouraged to spend that voucher or, depending on the merchant's preferences, the voucher can be stored in the account for later use. Vouchers can be partially used with the balance ready for the next time the viewer makes a purchase against the relevant merchant. These vouchers facilitate an entirely new class of consumer promotion, including point-of-sale impulse purchasing and consumer-to-consumer gifting while dovetailing with pay-as-you-go, one of the most game-changing payment paradigms to hit the consumer market in the last decade. Also, PayWizard customers will soon be able to transfer money between PayWizard accounts at no charge, a true differentiator in the Payment Service Provider (PSP) space, in which consumers typically feel hamstrung by account-to-account transaction charges. This facility will encourage new kinds of purchasing, offering additional flexibility to consumers, and will foster the creation of new subsidiary accounts, such as when an account holder sets up an account for a relative or friend. Visitors to the PayWizard stand will be able to see the complete range of multi-device payment options, which includes a demonstration of an all-in connected-TV user interface, content discovery, customer relationship and monetization solution, powered by PayWizard. This demo is in co-operation with leading digital TV interface design partners, easeltv, and digital content management experts, Ooyala. The demo includes an intuitive UI that displays content choices, including VOD, in easeltv's easy-to-use 'Suggested TV' search interface. The smooth integration with the PayWizard platform results in swift content search, purchase and access and underscores the importance of a good consumer experience. A key component of the solution being demonstrated during IBC is a new PayWizard account management app, announced in August, for Samsung connected TV's [see the article published on itvt.com, August 30th]. The new app increases the number and types of device on which PayWizard customers can manage their balance, top-ups and transactions--all in a quick, simple and secure interface."
  • Interactive TV software and data services company, Related Content Database (RCDb), has unveiled its new WatchWith Service Delivery Platform for standards-based over-the-top (OTT) television distribution. The company is demo'ing the new solution at IBC 2011 in Oracle's and Verimatrix's booths. "The WatchWith Service Delivery Platform gives content providers and service operators immediate access to the only standards-based platform running in 70 million consumer households worldwide today," the company states in its press materials. "The WatchWith Service Delivery Platform provides content owners and service providers with a complete suite of premium content-delivery solutions that leverage the global Blu-ray Disc standard. These include: 1) A customizable content-on-demand consumer application. 2) Transactional VOD, subscription VOD, and advertising VOD options. 3) Blu-ray content-preparation software and service solutions. 4) A growing ecosystem of content-management and content-protection partners...As the underlying platform technology for Blu-ray Disc, tru2way, DVB-MHP, and other digital television standards worldwide, Java is the proven standards-based solution for OTT deployments. RCDb's WatchWith Service Delivery Platform demonstrates the breadth of the ecosystem of Java-based technology partners for digital media. The RCDb WatchWith Service Delivery Platform is available on a SaaS or license basis." Said RCDb president, Herve Utheza: "RCDb makes the OTT business model work by bringing a 'virtual set-top' solution to the operator, leveraging the consumer purchase of standards-based Blu-ray Disc players. This literally represents hundreds of millions of dollars saved in operator CAPEX investment."
  • In other RCDb news: The company has teamed with content-security specialist, Verimatrix, and CE manufacturer, LG Electronics, to launch what the companies are billing as a complete solution for pay-TV operators and broadcasters to securely deliver premium content over IP to LG's connected-TV platform and Blu-ray players. The solution is being demo'd in Verimatrix's booth (4.B54) at IBC 2011. "The joint solution highlights how service providers and broadcasters can easily deploy a multiplatform service for distribution of premium content in a highly secure, cost-effective manner across the open Internet or within a managed network," the companies state in their press materials. "The Verimatrix VCAS for Internet TV solution provides encryption, secure key management and device authentication to protect streaming content to LG devices. RCDb's WatchWith Service Delivery Platform enables an operator-branded application accessible via the LG App Store, and LG Smart TV platform family including LG LCD and plasma TV's, Blu-ray players and the Smart TV Upgrader. RCDb's WatchWith Service Delivery Platform also delivers secure streaming video to Blu-ray players, and leverages a common rights management interface through the Verimatrix MultiRights infrastructure." Said RCDb CEO, Zane Vella: "For the first time ever, pay-TV operators and broadcasters can turn to a team of world-class companies that have brought their solutions together to deliver content to connected televisions, as well as standards-based Blu-ray players. IP delivery is complicating service distribution, so a solution that leverages both standards and OEM-differentiated offerings will be key for the years ahead."
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