Cable Technology Feature Article
January 22, 2010
Verizon Enhances FiOS TV's Interactive Media Guide with More Personalized Features
By Rajani Baburajan, TMCnet Contributor
Verizon Communications has announced more interactive features for FiOS (News - Alert) TV subscribers in Hillsborough, Pinellas, Pasco, Polk, Manatee and Sarasota counties in Florida.
The carrier has updated its FiOS TV’s Interactive Media Guide to include increased video-on-demand personalization, purchasing power via remote control for Showtime and ESPN (News - Alert) programming, gaming widgets and new navigational shortcuts that make exploring the expansive world of FiOS TV faster and easier than ever before, said company officials.
Michelle Robinson, Verizon’s (News - Alert) Southeast region president, said the latest enhancements put new tools in customers’ hands to help them better search and enjoy Verizon’s 18,000 monthly titles in its VOD service, evaluate and purchase premium channels and more quickly access useful features like parental controls and in-depth show descriptions.
“Recommendations For You” is a new IMG feature which allows subscribers to sign up to see personalized VOD recommendations that are based on movies they have viewed and ordered in the past from the FiOS TV VOD library.
“More Like This” button allows users to preview a VOD title and see additional, similar titles based on actors and genres.
An interactive sports add-on, “ESPN” allows users to quickly and easily purchase a weekly pass or full subscription to ESPN pay-per-view events, including ESPN College GameDay and NBA Full Court Pass.
Additionally, the new IMG also includes an “On-Screen Premium Programming Purchasing” option for users interested in purchasing their favorite shows.
The IMG is also enhanced with a “Quick Guide TV Options” shortcut to access and control some of the common tools faster and easier.
“Quick Guide DVR Options” is a special shortcut that provides subscribers with options such as “play program from the beginning,” “select delete,” “save until I delete,” “initiate parental controls,” “select closed captions” and “help.”
“Full Screen Program Information” provides viewers with a full-screen view of in-depth program descriptions, including cast, crew and plot synopses.
“Reversi Widget” is a one- or two-player game displayed on the TV. “Chinese Checkers Widget” is a variation of traditional Chinese checkers, with the goal of having one marble left on the board.
The new features have been available in Texas, California, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and New York and will be expanded to all other FiOS TV markets over the next few months, the company said.
FiOS TV is currently available to more than 10.3 million homes in 14 states, according to company sources.
A recent news report said that Verizon has no plans to enter Beverly as the FiOS provider is not planning to bid to become the city’s cable television provider when Beverly’s contract with Comcast (News - Alert) expires in 2011.
Rajani Baburajan is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Rajani's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Marisa Torrieri