Vizio Plugs More Internet Content Into HDTVs

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Vizio expanded the content available through its Internet-connected HDTV sets, announcing a new roster of partners including Showtime Networks, eBay, Facebook, Twitter and Vudu.

Showtime's TV Widget will provide video extras, trailers, trivia and select sample episodes of hit series such as Dexter and Weeds, while consumers will be able to access their eBay, Facebook and Twitter accounts from the Vizio TVs.

Other new content partners Vizio announced include Revision 3, Rallypoint Sports, Radiotime and Vudu, which provides on-demand movies. The TV manufacturer previously announced deals with companies including Accedo Broadband, Amazon, Blockbuster, Flickr, Netflix, Pandora and RealNetworks' Rhapsody.

Vizio's Via Connected HDTV feature includes integrated wireless 802.11n dual-band and Ethernet networking interfaces to connect to an Internet router. The TVs also include a universal remote control with built-in QWERTY keyboard that slides open to allow users to type keywords for movies, TV shows, music, chat or enter logins and passwords.

Other TV manufacturers that provide Internet content on their sets include Sony Electronics, Panasonic, LG Electronics and Samsung Electronics.

Vizio had the best-selling products in the flat-panel LCD-TV category for the first quarter of 2009, according to research firm iSuppli.

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