Time Warner Interacts with Navic


Time Warner Cable systems are quietly rolling out new interactive-TV services that allow subscribers to pay their bill or add programming with the click of a remote, as well as view interactive advertising or participate in polls.

An expanded agreement with Navic Networks will see about one-third of Time Warner systems nationwide use Navic’s “HyperGate” data-transport technology and platform, enabling the interactive-TV services.

Navic made a name for itself in 2002 by helping Time Warner’s Oceanic Cable division in Hawaii to build a “Pizza On Demand” application, which has since been expanded to a full food court that allows customers to place delivery orders from several restaurants with the click of a remote.

Time Warner senior vice president Patricia Armstrong said the Pizza On Demand idea could transfer to systems in the lower 48 states, but that “isn’t on anybody’s calendar this year.”

Armstrong -- who is also helping to develop Time Warner’s upcoming “Digital Navigator” interactive program guide -- said Navic is working with the MSO’s navigation group to enable customers to view and pay bills or add programming services via remote.

In addition to Hawaii, Time Warner has rolled out Navic technology in Albany, N.Y., and four other markets Armstrong wouldn’t name.

Navic CEO Frank Anthony said his company’s products are in front of 2.5 million digital-cable customers, including systems owned by Time Warner, Cox Communications Inc. and other MSOs he said he couldn’t disclose.