Interactive TV News Round-Up (III): ConnecTV, Delivery Agent, Cablevision, Shazam, Boston Celtics
--ConnecTV Launches ACR-Powered Social-TV App
--Delivery Agent Powers Super Bowl Tcommerce for Cablevision, Shazam
--Delivery Agent in Multiplatform Commerce Partnership with the Boston Celtics
Because the [itvt] editorial team has been working on The TV of Tomorrow Show 2012, we are covering stories in this issue in round-up/summary format.
- In time for the Super Bowl, ConnecTV, a social-TV company co-founded by interactive TV industry veteran Ian Aaron (note: the company recently announced an integration partnership with ACR technology provider, Civolution--see the article published on itvt.com, January 10th), last week launched a second-screen app in the Apple App Store. "Powered by proprietary content recognition technology representing more than two years of engineering effort, ConnecTV instantly synchronizes its service to the largest stable of national cable channels, regional sports networks and leading local broadcasters across America," the company states in its press materials. "The ConnecTV experience integrates the richest and most diverse cache of content from its growing list of licensed partners--from play-by-play sports stats to the latest celebrity gossip and from competition reality results to local news. Thanks to a previously announced exclusive partnership with 10 television station groups, ConnecTV will soon roll out tailored content for stations covering more than 76 million households. ConnecTV's social platform lets users instantly see what their friends are watching and share their favorite TV moments with a single touch. ConnecTV's seamless social integration allows 'viewsers' to automatically post what they are watching to friends on Facebook and Twitter by simply tuning in to their favorite program. With every change of the channel, users can also see the total number of their friends who 'like' the show and invite those who are not watching to join them. ConnecTV users can chat with friends who are watching any program or join 'show chat,' which includes top fan tweets and official Twitter feeds from players and leagues as well as show cast members, producers and networks. ConnecTV's special coverage of Sunday's Big Game offers an immersive second-screen experience unlike any other: all the fast-changing player and team statistics and game betting lines provided in real time; historic Bowl Moments; 'Did You Know?' factoids about the players and the game as well as special info about half-time star Madonna. Viewsers will also be able to vote for their choice of MVP throughout the game as well as choose the best ads of the day. ConnecTV registered users will be able to smack-talk and share their commentary in the show chat that includes official NFL and NBC Tweets--or chat with friends and create their own private Big Bowl parties on ConnecTV...The ConnecTV social-TV platform is available beginning today in 'Public Beta' in Apple's iPad App Store or directly from any browser at www.connectv.com. Current beta testers will be required to download the new version of ConnecTV to enjoy all the new features and functionality. ConnecTV's service is set to sync with and recognize more than 250 national channels, and will soon be introduced on more than 200 local ABC, NBC, CBS, Fox, The CW and MyNetworkTV affiliate channels owned by America's leading broadcast groups. In addition, ConnecTV will be adding the top 26 regional sports networks over the next several months so sports enthusiasts can engage with their favorite local professional and college teams. ConnecTV initially supports iPad and browser-based devices such as Macs and PC's. Soon to come: Android tablets and smartphones."
- Multiplatform commerce specialist, Delivery Agent, announced Friday that it was working with Cablevision, Shazam and FMI (note: the latter operates the NFL shop at the NFL Experience and at Lucas Oil Stadium) on a tcommerce initiative that would allow consumers to "shop Super Bowl XLVI on any device--from televisions to mobile devices and the Web during the game. Cablevision's nearly three million digital cable customers in the New York Metropolitan Area have a unique opportunity to shop for Super Bowl merchandise on its Market Showcase, iO TV Channel 602," Delivery Agent's press materials continue. "Viewers have access to a range of merchandise including Super Bowl XLVI and New York Giants products typically available only to those in attendance at the Super Bowl at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Consumers can purchase Super Bowl products by pushing the select button from their remote control to request an immediate call from the NFL Experience Super Store's customer service representative. Shortly following the crowning of the Super Bowl XLVI champions, the merchandise inventory will be updated to showcase the winning team. Concurrently, consumers who use the Shazam App during the game will be served contextually relevant Super Bowl products to their mobile device. After a product is identified, consumers will be able to easily purchase the product via Delivery Agent's mobile storefront and securely checkout using Delivery Agent's TV Wallet, the transaction engine used by media companies to process transactions across the Web, mobile, tablet and ITV." Said Delivery Agent CEO, Mike Fitzsimmons: "Delivery Agent's business is focused on driving commerce transactions tied to sports and entertainment programming for the leading media companies. We are thrilled to be making the Super Bowl a multiplatform shopping experience. With an estimated 45% of television households watching, we expect to see a large percentage engaging with a Delivery Agent Super Bowl shopping environment on one of the many accessible platforms we're powering."
- In other Delivery Agent news: The company announced last month that it had secured a multi-year extension (through 2015) of its commerce and marketing services agreement with the Boston Celtics, which has been in effect (for the Web) since 2006. "Under the terms of the extension, Delivery Agent will continue to provide the Boston Celtics with ecommerce and marketing services including design, development, research, customer service, fulfillment, and interactive marketing," the company states in its press materials. "In addition, Delivery Agent will deploy shopping experiences for the Celtics' passionate fan base across mobile, social and interactive television channels."