After nearly two years in the works, Liberty Global Inc.’s Horizon media gateway made its first public appearance yesterday at IBC (see Liberty Global Shows Off ‘Horizon’ Next-Gen Gateway).
Among other features the next-gen QAM/IP box features a flashy new guide, media-sharing features, recommendations, access to Internet content and a smartphone-like app platform — in the same class as Comcast’s Xcalibur, which is still in trials (see Cable Show 2011: Comcast’s Roberts Pulls Out ‘Xcalibur’ TV, Gigabit DOCSIS). Denver-based LGI plans to launch it in Q1 2012, first at UPC in the Netherlands.
Here’s what the box and UI look like. The Horizon gateway was built by Samsung Electronics; it runs Intel’s Atom CE Media Processor and NDS middleware. The user interface is based on NDS’s Snowflake UI framework, and Nagravision is providing the conditional access.
The remote has simple up-down-left-right keys with a select button, menu and back keys, and a volume control on the side — and includes a QWERTY keyboard on the back.
And here is the Horizon user interface:
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