News

Rovi Scratches ITV Itch

10/18/2010 10:48 AM Eastern

Rovi has knitted Fourth-
Wall
Media’s interactive TV
platform — plus a six-pack of
interactive apps — together
with its Passport guide for cable
operators.

The platform includes Fourth-
Wall’s Enhanced TV Binary Interchange
Format (EBIF) set-top
user agent, ETV Server and prebuilt
TV Widgets applications.

Initially, the solution is available
for Passport release 3.1 on
Cisco Systems set-tops boxes.
Rovi is developing support
for Motorola set-tops running
i-Guide and Passport, expected
sometime in 2011, vice president
of vertical marketing Sharon
Metz said.

The TV Widget starter kit for
Passport customers comprises
six apps, which are accessible
from within the guide’s main
screen: news; weather; sports; finance, for checking stock prices;
eBay on TV, for browsing and bidding
on items for sale on the auction
website; and Yellow Pages
localized listings.

“We’re delivering an interactive
experience to cable customers
that’s fully integrated with our
Passport guide,” Metz said.

Blue Ridge Communications,
the 19th-largest U.S. cable operator,
will be the first to deploy
the combined Rovi/FourthWall
solution including the widgets
in November. Last
month, the Palmerton,
Pa.-based
MSO l aunched
FourthWall’s My
Football Tracker
EBIF-based app.

Rovi — which
announced its
partnership with
FourthWall in February
2010 — is
offering the ITV applications
and content
to operators
as a bundled subscription
service.

For the TV Widgets, news content
is provided from the Associated
Press; weather is fed by
the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration and
The Weather Underground; and
sports info is supported by The
Sports Network and Stats Inc.

In addition, FourthWall will
work with local Yellow Pages publishers
to preload business listings
for individual markets.

September