Interactive TV News Roundup

-- SeaChange Supplies VOD Gear to Bulgaria's M-Tel

-- Ericsson Powers China's YOU On Demand VOD Platform 

-- SWRV Hits Milestone of 30M Interactions

-- Ruwido: Remote Controls Aren't Going Away

-- Softel Launches MediaSphere Digital Transport Adapter

  • SeaChange International's On Demand Group  said it struck a deal with top Bulgarian telecom company M-Tel to manage its VOD services. M-Tel provides GSM mobile phone service to about 5 million subscribers, and it is expanding into fixed line Internet and entertainment service. ODG has similar agreements to manage VOD and pay-per-view services with Virgin Media in the UK, SFR in France, KBW and Unity Media in Germany, OTE in Greece, TTNet in Turkey, and du in Dubai. 
  • Ericsson said it struck a deal with YOU On Demand in China to supply the company with a content delivery system for its new video-on-demand and pay-per-view platform. Ericsson said it will team up with YOU On Demand to deploy the IP-based platform to cable operators throughout China. The VOD platform will use Ericsson's MediaPath content delivery system and the company's Xport Producer storage encoding solution. 
  • SWRV, the interactive music video network distributed by Music Choice, said it has reached the milestone of 30 million "viewer interactions" since its debut on Feb. 10, 2010. SWRV, which allows viewers to user their remote controls and mobile applications to vote for the next video to play, is distributed by Verizon's FiOS TV, Cox Communications, and AT&T's U-verse TV. 
  • Austrian remote control manufacturer ruwido issued a unique press release Thursday in which it attempts to dismiss speculation that traditional TV remote controls will be replaced by voice-activated program guides. The company said its announcement was prompted by reports that Apple may be using its Siri software to power TVs that could be navigated by voice commands. "There is no doubt that the multi-button remote control devices in use today are unnecessarily complicated and many users want an easier, more intuitive way of navigating and selecting from content menus,” ruwido CEO Ferdinand Maier said in a prepared statement. “Speculation regarding Apple’s plans for TV has elevated the debate within the industry, the media and on social networks as to how the experience could, and should, be enhanced, and we fully support and believe in this." Ruwido notes that the company is improving navigation devices, and touts its new aura device, which relies on gestures to change channels a TV. 
  • Softel unveiled a transport stream generator capable of distributing data
    to DTA boxes. A company spokesperson told [itvt] that the Softel
    MediaSphere DTA allows cable operators to maximize the bandwidth capacity of their current infrastructure for quick, economical delivery of digital services, such as service information (SI), electronic program guide (EPG) and video-on-demand (VOD).