In a development that could spell trouble for middleware vendors Liberate
Technologies and Microsoft Corp., Gemstar-TV Guide International Inc. unveiled a
plug-and-play interactive-TV offering with WorldGate Communications Inc. and
Concurrent Computer Corp.
Gemstar said it has completed the integration of Concurrent's video-on-demand
system and WorldGate's Internet-over-TV, electronic-mail and walled-garden
offerings, and MSOs will be able to deploy the full package this summer.
The announcement is a blow to Liberate and Microsoft because operators can
deploy an interactive programming guide and interactive-TV products on
thin-client set-tops such as Motorola Broadband Communications Sector's
'DCT-2000' without rolling out middleware.