Cable Technology Feature Article
March 10, 2009
Zodiac and ActiveVideo Partner to Enhance Subscribers Web-Infused TV Experience
By Nathesh, TMCnet Contributor
Zodiac Interactive and ActiveVideo have forged a partnership that will enable cable operators to make full use of the technologies provided by the companies to improve the web-infused TV experience to all Tru2way devices.
ActiveVideo Networks, formerly ICTV (News - Alert), provides programming and technology that infuse television with Web content and interactivity. Zodiac Interactive is a developer of software for interactive television.
The companies have agreed to integrate an ActiveVideo Client into both Zodiac’s PowerUp framework software for tru2way and PowerTV which will simplify the process of deployment of ActiveVideo services for any operators on their tru2way or PowerTV set-top boxes. The companies have also planned to upgrade the Zodiac ActiveVideo Client so that it is able to provide true interoperability and transparency across all TV services such as linear, VOD, EBIF, advanced advertising, etc.
The ActiveVideo client enables viewer navigation of onscreen MPEG content via remote-control key clicks; each key click is sent upstream to server-based processors that modify the stream in real time. PowerUp is Zodiac's tru2way framework, a common platform of open APIs and libraries that allow for a broad range of applications to be developed and work together across multiple tru2way components, including authoring tools, stacks/middleware, set-tops, etc.
The ActiveVideo Distribution Network is entirely standards-based and runs within existing Web and VOD infrastructures, acquiring programming and applications from standard Web servers, mixing it with live and VOD elements, and delivering it from the head-end as MPEG video. It can easily be integrated with existing set-top box-based interactive TV technologies.
ActiveVideo President and CEO Jeff Miller commented that Zodiac’s PowerUp framework shows the company’s commitment to tru2way technology and now with the integration of a Zodiac client into the framework operators and programmers are provided with new ways to increase their revenue and rapidly deploy interactive television services. And also it will also speed up installation of rich media applications including advertising micro-sites, customizable navigational mosaics and Web-like search functionality.
According to the company, the PowerUp framework gives operators easy access to plug-and-play advanced Interactive Television 2.0 services, such as advanced guides, EBIF applications, and TV widgets including local restaurant searching, click-to-call, games, photo-sharing, weather, traffic, sports scores, local news, and more.
Nathesh is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Nathesh's articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Jessica Kostek