Interview: John Callahan, CTO of ActiveVideo Networks

ActiveVideo Networks (formerly ICTV) recently appointed interactive TV pioneer,
John Callahan, as its CTO. Callahan previously spent 15 years at Time Warner
Cable, where he was involved in many of the operator's interactive TV and
VOD initiatives, and where he served most recently as SVP of software
engineering for its Advanced Technology Group. He was a significant
contributor to the creation of the Time Warner Cable Pegasus digital television
system architecture, and to such seminal interactive TV technologies and
standards as the Interactive Services Architecture (ISA), VOD, OCAP and

**Exclusive: Bell ExpressVu Licenses Oberon's JIVE Platform

--Platform will Add Community Features to "Games Galaxy" Service

--Oberon also Secures Deals with Gamenext, BSkyB, SweetIM, Telefonica

Oberon Media, the multiplatform casual games company that last year
acquired interactive TV games company, PixelPlay, contacted [itvt]
earlier this week to let us know that it has licensed its JIVE platform to
Bell ExpressVu to support the latter's ITV games service, Games
Galaxy. The platform will enable Bell ExpressVu to offer interactive
TV tournaments, advanced community features and online
leaderboards. These new features will initially be available on Game

[itvt] Interview: Sangita Verma, Co-Founder and CEO, TAG Networks

In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," Sangita Verma , co-founder and CEO of TAG Networks --a company that has developed a games-on-demand service, called TAG, that integrates with existing VOD infrastructures and supports community features and multi-device interaction--discusses the company's trial deployment of the service with Time Warner Cable in Dothan, Alabama (note: according to TAG Networks, during the first four months of the...

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;

International Interactive Emmy Award Winners Announced

At the MIPTV conference in Cannes earlier this month, the
International Academy of Television Arts & Sciences announced the
winners of its International Interactive Emmy Awards (note: the
awards, which were organized in partnership with Reed MIDEM, were
hosted by UK comedian, Brian Conley). The winners (together with
descriptions of their winning projects, provided by the International
Academy) were: Best Interactive Program: Finland's Invisio for "Staraoke" ("'Staraoke'
is an interactive cross-media concept, which combines a TV show for
kids with a karaoke-type PC game and a Web community. The
Staraoke PC game is a singing game where the player controls the
game character on the screen with the pitch of his/her voice. The

New Visiware Interactive TV Games Offering Leverages VOD Platforms

--Company Launches New Version of Playin'TV on New Zealand's Sky TV

--Forms ITV Poker Partnership with Bluff Magazine

Paris-based interactive TV games company, Visiware, has launched an
interactive TV games offering that leverages VOD platforms to offer
video and other rich-media content. Dubbed Playin'VOD, the new
offering will initially be targeted at cable and IPTV operators, but will
later be available for mobile phones and personal media players, and
also for hospitality deployments, the company says. "Visiware is
reinventing gaming on TV," Visiware executive chairman, Laurant
Weill, said in a prepared statement. "In partnership with producers and

Ken Jennings to Guest on PlayCafe's Interactive Game Show Channel

PlayCafe, a company that bills itself as "the first Internet TV network
for game shows" (note: its Web site streams live, free-to-play game
shows, on weekdays from 6:00PM-8:00PM Pacific, that allow viewers
to play along, chat with hosts and other players, form teams, contribute
questions, and win prizes), contacted [itvt] last week to let us know that Ken Jennings, the holder of the record for the longest winning streak on
the US game show, "Jeopardy!," will be appearing as a special guest
this evening. He will participate in an interactive real-time quiz in
which any visitor to PlayCafe's Web site will be able to take part.

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

[itvt] Radio: Morgan Guenther on AirPlay's "Jeopardy!" Play-Along Gaming Deal

In this recorded episode of [itvt]'s talk radio show, "The TV of Tomorrow Show with Tracy Swedlow," AirPlay chairman and CEO, Morgan Guenther , talks about his company's new deal with Sony Pictures Television to provide multiplayer play-along mobile gaming for the popular game show, "Jeopardy!"; about some of the other new projects the company will be undertaking this year; about its business model and its plans to scale its business; about his experiences at TiVo (where he served as president from 2001-2003); and more.