digital converter box

Founder, Jasper Smith, Reacquires Static 2358 (PlayJam) from OpenTV

--OpenTV to Retain 19% Stake in the Company

--Static 2358 Unveils Plans for PlayJam-Branded Freeview Set-Top Boxes

Founder, Jasper Smith, has reacquired Static 2358, the company which
operates the PlayJam interactive TV games service and which was
acquired by OpenTV in 2001. Static 2358 is now 81% owned by
Smith's newly established holding company, General Entertainment &
Technology Corporation (GET Corp.), and 19% owned by OpenTV:
according to the companies, this shared ownership structure will
cement a "global alliance" between them. (Note: Smith is also the
founding director of Electra Entertainment, a company that has
developed a new interactive TV middleware--see article in this issue;

Comcast Launches AnyRoom On Demand

--Says its VOD Service has Generated over 7 Billion Views since 2003

--Company's Fancast Service now Features Video from over 100 Providers

--Company to Spend up to $70 Million on "Project Canoe" this Year

Comcast, the US's largest cable MSO, last week launched a service
called AnyRoom On Demand to its digital cable customers in New

Jersey who are equipped with Motorola set-top boxes (note: the
company says that New Jersey customers with Scientific-Atlanta digital
set-tops will receive the new service later this year, and that it also
plans to roll it out in other markets over the course of the year). As its
name suggests, the new service--which requires no extra equipment and

DISH Launches Second Phase of its Election-Year ITV Application

DISH Launches Second Phase of its Election-Year ITV Application Earlier this year, US satellite TV provider, DISH (formerly EchoStar),
launched the second phase of its election-year interactive TV
application, DISH Decision 2008. The first phase, dubbed "You Decide
2008" and based on technology from BIAP, presented DISH
subscribers with a series of questions designed to help match their
opinions with various candidates' positions. The second...

Comcast Launches AnyRoom On Demand

--Says its VOD Service has Generated over 7 Billion Views since 2003

--Company's Fancast Service now Features Video from over 100 Providers

--Company to Spend up to $70 Million on "Project Canoe" this Year

Comcast, the US's largest cable MSO, last week launched a service
called AnyRoom On Demand to its digital cable customers in New

Jersey who are equipped with Motorola set-top boxes (note: the
company says that New Jersey customers with Scientific-Atlanta digital
set-tops will receive the new service later this year, and that it also
plans to roll it out in other markets over the course of the year). As its
name suggests, the new service--which requires no extra equipment and

Time Warner Cable of NY & NJ Launches Start Over-Enabled "Enhanced HDTV"

Time Warner Cable of New York and New Jersey has announced plans
to expand its HDTV programming line-up, which it says will see it
carrying 100 HD channels and "more than 250 HD On Demand
choices" by the end of the year. The company is launching what it is
calling "Enhanced HDTV," a free offering that includes Start Over (i.e
the ability to start a program over during its allotted timeslot, without a
DVR) for both high- and standard-definition programs. It claims that
customers with HD-enabled set-top boxes will be able to Start Over
more than 13,000 SD and around 1,500 HD choices per month at no
additional charge. "By delivering the most HD choices and Enhanced

2nd Annual tru2way Developers Conference Scheduled for May 17th and 18th

The second annual tru2way Developers Conference will be held in
New Orleans on Saturday, May 17th and Sunday, May 18th, just prior
to the NCTA Cable Show . The conference is produced by the NCTA,
in partnership with CableLabs (the originator of the tru2way/OCAP
standard) and premier sponsor, Vidiom Systems , a company that
specializes in tru2way/OCAP technology and that has a long track
record of offering not-for-profit classes and other educational events on
the standard. According to the organizers, the conference will provide a
forum for cable operators, content providers, Java developers, and

[itvt] Radio: Rentrak's Cathy Hetzel and Dustin Encelewski on Measuring VOD Usage

[itvt] Radio: PBS Celebrity, Gary Sohmers, on his Video Queue ITV Technology

In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," Gary Sohmers , president and chairman of Interactive Meet and Greet Entertainment (IMAGE) , discusses his company's flagship Video Queue technology, which allows TV viewers to have face-to-face encounters with celebrities. (Note: Sohmers will probably be familiar to [itvt] readers who are also PBS viewers: he is a regular guest on the popular program, "Antiques Roadshow," where he appraises toys, collectibles and memorabilia.)