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Television meets internet, social networks, computing & assorted devices. Hijinx ensue.
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OATC Announces "Online Multimedia Authorization Protocol"

OATC Announces "Online Multimedia Authorization Protocol" | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

...The OMAP specification will benefit stakeholders in the online subscription content ecosystem:

-- Multimedia content publishers and distributors will reduce unauthorized access to content, share a common architecture to minimize operational overhead and cost and provide consumers with
standardized, secure access to media content over the Internet using their home and mobile devices and client software.

-- Technology vendors and third-party service providers can develop value-added services and commercial solutions to deploy across the entire subscription content ecosystem.

-- Consumers get choice, convenience and a simple and consistent experience, unlike today's proprietary solutions.

"OATC [Open Authentication Technology Committee] is creating the open standards needed to enable simple online access to subscription TV services by bridging the gaps in existing technology with practical and workable solutions," said Glenn Reitmeier, OATC president. "We are very excited to announce this preview of our first of several standards to come that will help MVPDs and programmers give their subscribers more choices than ever before." The OATC is inviting the public to download (http://www.oatc.us/Standards/Download.aspx ) the draft specification and provide comments by May 4, 2012.

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Tryphoon's comment, April 6, 2012 7:04 PM
We're co-authors!
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Exclusive: Half of Internet TVs Aren't Connected

Exclusive: Half of Internet TVs Aren't Connected | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

...Every major TV-maker — LG, Panasonic, Samsung and others — offers sets with Wi-Fi and apps to access video services like Netflix, music sites like Pandora and social networks like Twitter.

But that doesn’t mean people are doing it.  "People are buying connected TVs, but they are not all using them," said Norm Bogen, vice president for digital entertainment at research firm NPD In-Stat. In fact, according to a survey that In-Stat shared exclusively with TechNewsDaily, only half of all people who own Internet-capable TVs have actually gotten them online.

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Roku shrinks its box, puts it on an MHL thumb drive

Roku shrinks its box, puts it on an MHL thumb drive | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Roku announced the launch of a new product line of so-called Streaming Sticks on Wednesday that will enable consumers as well as TV manufacturers to add Roku’s platform to TVs simply by plugging a USB-stick-like device into a special HDMI port. Roku is partnering with Best Buy to sell the stick together with the retailer’s Insignia TVs, but it will also make it available separately to consumers by this fall.  Roku’s Streaming Stick will essentially offer the same capabilities as its current lineup of set-top boxes but with a much smaller form factor. The stick will be about as big as a USB flash drive, Roku CEO Anthony Wood told me during a phone conversation on Tuesday. Roku’s stick makes use of Mobile High-Definition Link (MHL), a new display-port technology that was originally invented to connect cell phones to HD TV sets. MHL is self-powered, so Roku doesn’t need to ship the device with any power adapter. The technology also allows users to control their Roku stick with their existing remote control.  The downside of MHL is that it is still really new. Currently only a few TV sets are supporting the standard. Wood told me that he expects many more manufacturers to jump on board this year. Of course, many of these new TV sets will also come with built-in app platforms. So why would consumers spend an additional $50 to $100 for a smart-TV dongle? Wood told me that he sees a lot of potential in lower-priced TV sets like the ones from Insignia that don’t bother with adding Google TV or Yahoo Widgets, and he added that a separate stick is easier to update than a solution embedded in a TV.

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Microsoft Inks Deals To Bring HBO Go, Bravo, BBC And More To Xbox 360

Microsoft Inks Deals To Bring HBO Go, Bravo, BBC And More To Xbox 360 | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Hyping its Xbox 360 gaming console as "the entertainment center of the living room," Microsoft announced that it has struck new partnerships with nearly 40 content owners and pay-TV operators worldwide, including HBO, Bravo, Syfy, NBC's Today, Comcast and Verizon in the U.S.  Both Comcast and Verizon separately announced their Xbox hookups Tuesday. The cable operator plans to make several thousand video-on-demand titles available via the console, while FiOS TV subscribers will be albe to access a selection of 26 live TV channels.  Internationally, new Xbox pay-TV partners include: Telefónica in Spain; Rogers On Demand in Canada; Televisa in Mexico; ZDF in Germany; and MediaSet in Italy.  On the content front, Xbox 360 will add access for U.S. subscribers to its Xbox Live service from Bravo, Crackle, Epix, Syfy, TMZ, NBC's Today, UFC, and HBO Go. Non-U.S. content partners include: the BBC, Channel 4, Channel 5 and LoveFilm in the U.K.; Antena 3, RTVE and Telefónica in Spain; Televisa in Mexico.

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Pay TV's future and the battle for Input 1

Pay TV's future and the battle for Input 1 | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

...What’s more important: control or reach?  For operators, the goal is to quicken innovation and to increase the number of ways that viewers can access their services. The adoption of cloud-based services and more flexibility to reach devices that consumers may buy or already have in their homes is key to that strategy. However, doing so has its downsides: If your cable box no longer controls Input 1, your pay TV provider loses the ability to control how you find and access content. The question for operators is if that tradeoff will be worth it in the long run.

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The 5 Best Smart TV Platforms of 2011

The 5 Best Smart TV Platforms of 2011 | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

The year 2011 marked the coming of age of Internet-connected ("smart") HDTVs. Though your TV's ethernet cable probably won't replace your cable TV quite yet, many more apps and video services will find their way into your TV--a far cry from 2010's connected TV features, which typically amounted to Netflix, YouTube, and a rental service or two.  Today, you can expect your TV to come with several general video-streaming services (Hulu Plus, Netflix, YouTube), a few video-on-demand rental services (Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, CinemaNow), Internet radio from Pandora and Rhapsody, social networking through Twitter and Facebook, an array of special apps for sports and photos, and sometimes even a full Web browser.

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KIT digital Launches KIT Connected Device Framework

KIT digital Launches KIT Connected Device Framework | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

KIT digital launched today the KIT Connected Device Framework, a collection of native application templates and a comprehensive software development kit (SDK) designed to help organizations simplify the process of delivering unified socially-enabled video experiences across multiple internet connected devices, including connected TVs, game consoles, set-top boxes (STB), smartphones and tablets. The KIT App Studio features: Customizable template applications for a growing number of leading smartphone, tablet and connected TV devices, including Android and iOS-powered devices, as well as TiVo, Boxee, Google TV and others Extensible partner plug-in architecture with support for leading advertising platforms such as Doubleclick, Freewheel, and Tremor Media; analytics platforms such as Adobe Omniture; and global distribution platforms such as the Akamai HD Network Seamless, simple and secure user verification for "TV Everywhere" federated user authentication, such as Adobe Pass Support of video, audio, pictures, and interactive engagement features such as member check-in, chat, comments, ratings, social sharing, and activity notifications.


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Viewsonic Kills Boxee-powered TV Set

Viewsonic Kills Boxee-powered TV Set | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Consumer electronics developer Viewsonic has decided to pull the plug on bringing a Boxee-powered TV set to market. The company explained Smart TVs have a high cost and there is not enough consumer interest at the time. For the future, Viewsonic tells GigaOm, “Our current strategy is to stay involved with the various technology developments and consider them in the future as they become available.”  Boxee, the Brooklyn based Internet-to-TV streaming company still in partnership with Iomega and devices are expected to come to out in mid October.

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CNBC boxes clever with Real-Time TV app for connected televisions

CNBC boxes clever with Real-Time TV app for connected televisions | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Broadcasters may be buzzing about the potential of second-screen mobile and tablet apps for viewers to use while watching their shows, but they are not forgetting that first screen. Business and financial news channel CNBC has launched its first connected TV app in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. CNBC Real-Time TV App serves up a variety of content, including video interviews and market analysis; live data from the London Stock Exchange, NYSE, NASDAQ and the Deutsche Börse; and a personalised portfolio feature to keep tabs on up to 30 individual stocks at once. The app is available for connected TV products from Panasonic, Philips and Samsung in the EMEA region, as well as through Virgin Media's app-capable set-top box in the UK.

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App TV: 2011 Internet services on TVs compared

App TV: 2011 Internet services on TVs compared | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
CNET compares different Internet and app suites available on 2011 HDTVs.
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Tryphoon's comment, July 19, 2011 1:04 AM
Issue is that Vizio is missing from that list and actually seem to be the ones with the most services...
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Cable asks FCC to halt plans for connected TV standard

Cable asks FCC to halt plans for connected TV standard | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
The FCC has been working on plans to create AllVid, a new CableCARD replacement standard for the delivery of IP video services and applications to Internet-connected television sets. The National Cable and Telecommunications Association, however, wants the FCC to back off. Former FCC Chairman Michael Powell, now head of the NCTA, wrote current FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski a letter last week urging him to stop working on AllVid. Powell cited the wide array of TV apps popping up on connected TVs, tablets and mobile devices as proof that such a standard is unnecessary. The FCC is seeking comment on AllVid in an effort to merge traditional TV channels and connected devices. The AllVid hardware would act as a universal adapter for all types of subscription TV content, delivered through a wide variety of means, including cable, satellite, VDSL, IPTV and Internet TV. The cable industry flatly opposes the standard. Powell said the growing acceptance of new authenticated TV Everywhere services, as well as cable’s adoption of cloud-based programming guides and user interfaces, are proof that pay-TV operators are rapidly adapting to the challenges of the digital age.
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Smart TV Platform Flingo Comes Out Of Stealth To Merge Television And The Web

Smart TV Platform Flingo Comes Out Of Stealth To Merge Television And The Web | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
...The ultimate objective of Flingo is to merge TV and the web, allowing media partners like Fox, Showtime and Etsy and 65 others to build apps that integrate both. In addition Flingo has built its own apps on top of its platform and its Hovercraft content detection algorithm allows for all sorts of increased user interaction. “A colloquial gloss on every show” is how Navin describes it, “I think what we’ve done with smart TVs is adding a layer of intelligence.” Coming this August from Flingo are Hovercraft apps that overlay a Tweet stream, add a Facebook “Like” button and overlay TV reviews onto TV shows. Along with these apps, the Flingo platform offers a feature called Fling, which allows users to “fling” or push content from their browser into their television screens and mobile phones by using the Fling bookmarklet. Users can also use the bookmarklet to share content on Twitter and onto Facebook.
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Baidu links to TV screens

China’s top search engine Baidu has reached an agreement with a Chinese television company to bring its search box to millions of television screens. Baidu said it reached an agreement with Huashu Media Internet company to jointly develop digital products and business models for Chinese television users. Baidu will also provide its current services of search, video, music and communication to more than 100 cities, potentially reaching tens of millions of television users. “Search is not limited to a PC or a mobile terminal. We hope that everyone, through any terminal, anytime, anywhere, can easily find the accurate information they need through Baidu’s ‘box’,” Baidu’s assistant to the chief executive Zhang Dongchen said.
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HBO Go Now Playing On Samsung TVs, But Not For Comcast And TWC

HBO Go Now Playing On Samsung TVs, But Not For Comcast And TWC | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

HBO's "TV Everywhere" service is now available on Samsung's Internet-connected HDTVs -- but customers of Comcast and Time Warner Cable can't access the feature today.  The two biggest U.S. cable operators also block access to HBO Go on Roku's Internet set-tops, while they do allow subscribers to access the service via PCs, Apple iPads and mobile phones.  Meanwhile, DirecTV is allowing customers to log in to HBO Go on Samsung TVs, but like Comcast and TWC the satellite TV company hasn't given the green light to Roku. DirecTV did not immediately provide an explanation for why the Samsung TVs are OK but the Roku boxes are not.  According to sources familiar with Comcast and Time Warner Cable's positions, HBO has not yet agreed to all of the conditions the MSOs require of their TV Everywhere partners, such as how subscriber information is handled on third-party devices and websites... 

On Time Warner Inc.'s Feb. 8 earnings call, CEO Jeff Bewkes urged the industry to make cable content available on as many devices as possible -- as quickly as possible.  "Frankly, I don't understand the reticence of distributors to authenticate on third-party sites like Roku and get HBO and TNT and all of those channels to television," Bewkes said. "As a general principle, we, as an industry, should be making viewers have availability with on-demand TV of all of their favorite networks on any platform, any device that they want to use. ... That's how you fulfill the promise of your brands and of television to viewers. And I'm hopeful that the industry will move pretty quickly past some of its -- I think their more minor concerns that they have, and they ought to speed up."

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Boxee clashes with cable companies over encryption

Boxee clashes with cable companies over encryption | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Boxee’s live TV dongle has only been available for a few weeks, but the company is already embroiled in a fight with cable giants like Comcast and Time Warner Cable over it, and is now getting support from groups like Public Knowledge and the Consumer Electronics Association.  At the core of the issue is whether cable companies should be allowed to encrypt their basic cable programming, something that existing regulation doesn’t allow. Unencrypted signals can be used by tuners built into most modern TV sets as well as equipment like Boxee’s live TV tuner to access these basic cable channels straight from the coax cable that comes out of your wall, without the need for any set-top box.  Cable companies have asked the FCC for waivers to these restrictions, arguing that encrypted channels would reduce piracy and that encrypted cable connections can be remotely serviced, eliminating the need for many service visits. The FCC is currently hearing all sides on the issue as it contemplates whether or not to do away with the restrictions and allow all cable companies to encrypt basic cable. Boxee has filed multiple letters with the commission and met with its staff last week.

On Wednesday, the startup wrote on its blog: “(The cable companies’) real motivation is to prevent you from being able to connect the cable from the wall directly to your TV or Boxee Box. You will need to rent a set-top box from your cable provider, pay an extra $5-$15 per month and it will no longer work with your Boxee Box or similar devices. The cable companies are losing subscribers every quarter. If they want to reverse that trend they should look into building better products, reducing prices and improving customer service, not going to the government asking for rule changes to force consumers into spending more money and blocking start-ups from competing.”

Boxee’s position has been shared by Public Knowledge as well as the Consumer Electronics Association and consumer electronics manufacturers like Hauppauge, which makes the Boxee dongle. The cable companies on the other hand have been getting support from the Motion Picture Association of America (MPAA) as well as some municipalities, including Miami, Florida.

Altogether, more than 80 documents have been filed with the FCC on the issue. Many of these filings from both sides make it clear that this isn’t just about what’s going to happen to those basic cable channels, but also about the role consumer electronics manufacturers, cable companies and start-ups like Boxee will play in the future of pay TV.

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Why Smart TVs Spurn DLNA: Evil Plot to Charge Tolls?

Why Smart TVs Spurn DLNA: Evil Plot to Charge Tolls? | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Experts discuss smart TVs at CEA Forum; Is DLNA underutilized because of support issues or do vendors want to extract more revenue from customers?

Why won’t connected TVs connect? Some of the brightest minds in the smart TV category discussed the subject last month at the CEA Industry Forum in the Technology & Standards track... Smyers and the panelists agreed that the smart TV thing isn’t working so great these days. “It’s challenging today,” said iLook's Redford, who lamented the multiple user interfaces and the challenge of switching between apps. “Today, video-on-demand through apps on the TV is not an easy thing to do,” he said. “Most people are not able to successfully connect it up and watch it by using their [TV’s] own app. An app on the iPhone can do it much more easily.” There ensued a heated discussion about developing standards for smart TVs, when someone chimed in: “There is one: DLNA.”...

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It’s official: Verizon bringing live TV to the Xbox 360

It’s official: Verizon bringing live TV to the Xbox 360 | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

We’ve known that this was coming, but today it has been consummated: Verizon is bringing a ‘FiOS TV-powered entertainment experience’ to Microsoft’s Xbox 360 console. Previous rumors included a similar deal landing soon with Comcast, which we anticipate being announced shortly.  Verizon has prepared an application for the Xbox that will allow its FiOS TV and Internet customers who are also Xbox LIVE Gold subscribers to view its television offerings on Microsoft’s console. The application itself has been designed to function with the Kinect, and will allow for full use sans a controller.  Content that will be be available is described as follows: A ‘selection’ of ‘popular’ content in high definition. It is, however, described as ‘multichannel.’

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Research: Pay-TV operators need to prepare to leverage connected TV boom

"Televisions, despite their higher price point compared to Blu-ray disc players and game consoles, tend to be more mainstream devices that are purchased in greater numbers and are more universally present in a larger number of households worldwide," Erickson said. "As broadband penetration increases worldwide and OTT functionality becomes commonplace in all but the lowest-end TVs within the next two years, it sets the stage for connected TVs to be the most globally-significant OTT video device over time."

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IBC: Multi-screen dominates, but another revolution is brewing

IBC: Multi-screen dominates, but another revolution is brewing | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

There was a positive mood at IBC this year, based on our conversations with vendors and the amount of business they were doing at the show, and not surprisingly, multi-screen TV was the big theme again. It is becoming clear now how this is a transition almost as big and dramatic as digital TV itself, which is why it keeps rolling on as a subject.  Multi-screen is evolving and the discussion this year was about how platform operators can achieve scale cost-effectively as they move beyond tens of channels to hundreds of channels, and how the early movers can differentiate their services once everyone has content to all screens.  The answer to this second question seems to be an integrated and holistic multi-screen experience, which means companion apps like remote control from the smartphone, and pause-resume between devices. The bottom line is that duplicating content everywhere is not enough; the whole experience has to be enriched so that two plus two equals five.  Multi-screen should keep us all busy for some years yet, but the even better news from IBC is that there is another revolution on the way, eloquently demonstrated by NDS with its ‘Surfaces’ concept. This is the evolution of TV from a rectangular box in our home, and a piece of furniture, to wall-sized display surfaces, which means that all the contextual interactivity you can achieve across TV, smartphones and tablets can actually be replicated in one place, providing you get the balance between lean-back and lean-forward correct

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How Netflix uses WebKit and HTML5 for TV devices

How Netflix uses WebKit and HTML5 for TV devices | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it

Netflix has spent the past few years trying to get its streaming service on as many devices as possible, including TVs, Blu-ray players, game consoles, streaming set-top boxes, mobile phones and tablets. It’s a monumental undertaking, given the large number of different operating systems and development tools needed across a number of different CE manufacturers.  In a post on the Netflix Tech Blog, device UI engineers Matt McCarthy and Kim Trott shared a presentation that gives a peek behind the curtain in how it’s able to do so. The key is standards-based development using WebKit, JavaScript, HTML5 and CSS3.

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Startup Veedios Bridges Video to Connected Devices

Startup Veedios Bridges Video to Connected Devices | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
Connected devices that enable viewing of online-delivered video on TVs are proliferating. As this new addressable universe of viewers expands, content providers naturally want to deliver to it. This is especially true for content providers who haven't gained valuable distribution agreements with pay-TV providers, and therefore have been shut out of the living room to date. The problem is that each connected device manufacturer has its own publishing environment and approval process. That's where startup Veedios comes in. Veedios has developed a tool that allows it to publish native apps to 5 different platforms today (boxee, Roku, Popbox, Plex and Yahoo Connected TV, which includes Samsung, Sony, Vizio, Toshiba and LG), with more coming soon including iOS and Android.
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The Superbox Arrives: Hybrid Gateways to Unify TV & IP

As the cable industry continues to look for ways to embrace Internet video, MSOs are taking increased interest in new devices that can handle both traditional TV and broadband data. A single box includes a cable modem and TV tuners, along with home-networking capability and other bells and whistles. This movement is an extension of an age-old concept of installing a single box in the home that can manage and distribute media and services all around the home. These new "superboxes" go by many names – including digital media centers, whole-home solutions, multimedia gateways and hybrid gateways. The latter seems most appropriate, since the current devices are combining video and data technologies into a single platform.

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How connected devices will disrupt the TV ad market

How connected devices will disrupt the TV ad market | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
Linear TV makes up the bulk of video ad dollars today, with about $160 billion worldwide being spent on broadcast advertising, compared to just $5.4 billion in IP-delivered video. But a rapidly growing number of connected devices will soon disrupt what we think of as TV advertising, by combining TV-sized reach with all the interactivity, targeting and analytics advertisers have come to expect from web video ads.
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Report: 500 million Web-enabled TVs by 2015

Report: 500 million Web-enabled TVs by 2015 | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
This year alone, around 25 percent of all flat-panel sets will come with Internet capabilities, and this trend is expected to grow to 47 percent by 2015, DisplaySearch says in report... Propelling the market share of these Web-enabled TVs is the convenience of wireless networking through Wi-Fi and smart-TV functions. The latter is a generic description of panels with the following features, according to DisplaySearch:
-Capable of retrieving content from the Internet independent of a portal
-Built-in intelligent search and recommendations
-Can seamlessly connect with other devices in a home network
The company is also forecasting an encouraging 35 percent smart-TV market penetration in North America for 46-inch and larger models in four years.
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Boxee Box remote zaps in for PC and Mac

Boxee Box remote zaps in for PC and Mac | TV Everywhere | Scoop.it
...The remote is identical to the one that ships with the Boxee Box (two sided with a full QWERTY on one side and quick launch buttons on the other) and comes with a tiny USB receiver that picks up the remote's RF signals. D-Link’s Daniel Kelley said: "The Boxee Remote Control is ideal for home theatre enthusiasts who have customized their home entertainment environment with a specialized PC or Mac media centre, but still want the Boxee Box’s unique viewing experience on their TV.
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