Friday, 30 April 2010

TV widgets & Managed Service Portals

A recent report from In-Stat has shown that there is expected to be considerable growth in TV widget revenue over the next few years, possibly generating up to US$ 1.7bn by 2013.

In the past 12 months we have seen a variety of exciting new TV widgets developed, which we’ve discussed on our blog, including: the Sky News App, a shopping widget from HSN and Comcast and Verizon launched a caller ID App.

As connected TVs evolve, consumers will have the opportunity to view more and more online content through TV Widgets and applications, which provide a streamlined mechanism to access a new wave of TV services. As the market develops it will be interesting to see how these applications will be delivered to enhance the consumer experience, either as a widget or via a managed service portal which has the capability to host a wide selection of applications and services.

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

NAB – Numbers up and the odd new demo too

Due to the ash cloud drifting over Europe like many, I’ve yet to make it back from NAB. So I thought I’d take this as a chance to reflect on the show.

At this years NAB the ANT team were pleased to showcase a number of demonstrations including the ANT Galio suite, the ANT managed portal and an example of HbbTV in action. Although based in a private suite, we also made time to walk the floor of the show too and I was pleased to see that the show had a great turnout. Attendance numbers were up by around 6,000 this year, which is a positive sign for the industry.

While there wasn’t the usual flood of new innovations being showcased, I did particularly enjoy what Intek Digital was showcasing on its stand. Intek’s new STB has been developed to include a small OLED (Organic Light Emitting Diode) on the front. This was being used as both a touch screen and a second screen.

The example demonstrated was that while children are watching cartoons on the main TV, the STB can be recording a football match on another channel. Nothing exceptional there but what was impressive was the small screen on the front of the STB was simultaneously showing the football match. When a goal was scored you were able to switch the content from the small screen to the main TV, rewind the action and then watch the goal, before returning to the cartoon. As well as a nice idea it was delivered in a user friendly and stylish design.

Wednesday, 14 April 2010

HD on-demand is in demand

Cable and telco IPTV operators are investing in both video on demand and streaming content server capacity in order to support on-demand HD content, according to a recent report from Infonetics. This highlights the increasing importance of ‘must have’ content for both Cable and IPTV operators.

On-demand content is enjoying huge popularity in the UK with the availability of platforms such as BBC iPlayer and 4OD. Between 2008 and 2009 world wide video on demand and streaming content server revenue increased by 60 per cent and is expected to continue to grow over the next year.