Verizon Sees Strong Demand for Tcommerce Product

-- Delivery Agent CEO: Initial Data 'Has Exceeded All Our Expectations Wildly'

New York -- Verizon is already seeing strong demand for a new tcommerce product that allows its FiOS TV subscribers to buy products from History channel with their remote controls, executives said here Monday at the TVOT NYC Intensive. 

"The initial data ...  has exceeded all of our expectations wildly," said Delivery Agent CEO Mike Fitzsimmons, whose company is providing the technology for the tcommerce service. 

Fitzsimmons said it took 500 days for Delivery Agent to build the tcommerce app for FiOS TV. While he said it is more difficult to deploy tcommerce through a digital cable platform compared to using mobile phone or Web applications, he emphasized that offering tcommerce through a remote control drives higher response rates. 

The tcommerce app allows FiOS TV subscribers watching History shows to buy products related to its programs. For example, viewers of its Pawn Stars series can buy classic bikes from Schwinn, presidential memorabilia from the Franklin Mint and DVDs of the series. 

Verizon director of content acquisition and programming Rachelle Zoffer said the company is sending its pay TV subscribers a separate bill for products ordered through the tcommerce platform. "We don't want your FiOS TV bill to get higher," she said during a panel session focused on tcommerce. 

After years of hype, tcommerce is beginning to draw more interest from cable operators and programmers. The technology is also attracting investments from major technology companies and venture capital firms. Delivery Agent announced last month that it had raised $35.5 million from Intel Capital, Liberty Global Ventures, Grazia Equity and other investors in its fifth round of funding. 

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