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iTV Middleware Report Card

Mon, 09/30/2002 - 8:00pm
Staff
Provider: Canal +

Middleware product platforms:

  • MediaHighway (legacy version): based on European Pantalk; requires 1 MB DRAM, 1 MB Flash memory; minimum CPU requirements of 33 MIPS.
  • MediaHighway (Java-based version); lightest profile of 4MB DRAM, 4MB Flash memory, 50 MIPS CPU; average profile requires 32 DRAM, 16MB Flash memory, minimum of 200 MIPS.

OCAP compliance:

  • MHP-compliant version in advance of OCAP specification

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • More than 14.3 million set-top deployments

Major MSO/operator partners:

  • Over 30 operators and broadcasters worldwide.
  • SureWest (formerly WINfirst)
  • ASTRO, ORBIT, Digitenne, Canal Satellite, EchoStar.

Major application development partners:

  • Sofia Digital, AccuWeather, The Weather Channel, nCUBE, Opera Software, NPTV, Metabyte, Starz Encore Group
  • Hardware partners: Sony, Broadcom, Thomson, Philips.
Provider: Liberate Technologies

Middleware product platforms:

  • TV Navigator Compact–400K of memory, runs on CPU as low as 1 to 10 MIPS available; ported to Motorola DCT2000.
  • TV Navigator Micro–about 3MB, runs on CPU in the range of the Scientific-Atlanta 2000- and 3000-Explorer series set-tops, CPU 80 to 100 MIPS.
  • TV Navigator Standard–about 4MB, runs on CPU ranges from 80 MIPS and above. Total memory footprint varies depending on application space, EPG and other layer requirements.

OCAP compliance:

  • TV Navigator–MHP; its profile includes DHTML (HTML 4.0, Cascading Style Sheet) and MHP, which is the basis of the OCAP 2.0 standard. Liberate plans to deliver this product to market for adoption and integration as early as 2003. Implementation of an MHP or OCAP-only solution pending network operator deployment direction.

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • Over 3 million set-tops

Major MSO/operator partners:

  • AT&T Broadband, Comcast, Cox, HITS, Insight, ntl, Rogers, Shaw, Telewest, UPC.

Major application development partners:

  • Infrastructure/device partners: Motorola, nCUBE, Pace, Samsung, Scientific-Atlanta, Sun Microsystems Corp., SeaChange.
  • Content/apps partners: ESPN, Fox, Game Show Networks, Nickelodeon, TV Guide.
Provider: Microsoft

Middleware product platforms:

  • Microsoft TV IPG (app): client/server solution, client footprint: 314K; Acadia validated for all Motorola DCT1000, DCT1200 and DCT2000 set-top boxes, supports Motorola's CFS-based headends; API included for delivery of third-party ad delivery systems; extensible mechanism enables integration from multiple third-party vendor through the IPG, including PPV, premium channel data, premium channel information, digital music and TV listings.

OCAP compliance:

  • Microsoft reports it is fully committed to supporting open standards and the OCAP specification, and will support all customer requirements with OCAP compliant products as needed in the future.

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • Information not supplied by provider.

Major MSO/operator partners:

  • DirecTV U.S., TV Cabo in Portugal, Thomson TAK in France, Rogers

Major application development partners:

  • SeaChange, Concurrent Computer, Avid, Chyron, Beyond Z Entertainment, Two Way TV
Provider: OpenTV Corp.

Middleware product platforms:

  • OpenTV Core 1.0*; requires a minimum 50 MIPS processing power; supports set-top processors ARM, MIPS, PPC, DCU, ST20, Motorola 68k, and AM; footprint of under 1MB of Flash memory and as little as 128k of free RAM; supports embedded real-time kernels including pSOS, VxWorks, Linux, Nucleus Plus and microTOS.
  • Core 1.0 serves multiple tiers of set-top box environments. Operators build layers based on box and operator needs; see application in three typical box environments: low–2MB DRAM/2MB Flash; medium–4MB DRAM/8MB Flash, 128 MHz processor; high-16MB DRAM/16 MB Flash, 250 MHz processor.

OCAP compliance:

  • Core 1.0 supports DVB, MPEG-2, ATSC, HTML, JavaScript, Java.
  • OpenTV MHP package utilizes Java, and is the basis for support of OCAP.

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • OpenTV middleware deployed in more than 27 million set-tops worldwide.

Major MSO/PTT partners:

  • OpenTV is deployed or has agreements to deploy with 51 cable, satellite and digital terrestrial operators worldwide. Partners include: BSkyB, EchoStar, Jupiter Telecommunications, Cablecom, Shaw Communications, Shanghai Cable, DirecTV Latin America, TPS, Via Digital.

Major application development partners:

  • OpenTV supports more than 1,300 developers around the world creating applications to run on the OpenTV platform.
Provider: PowerTV Inc.

Middleware product platforms:

  • PowerTV: 450K memory footprint; combines OS with associated middleware; small memory footprint running in 1MB of RAM, 128K of Flash RAM and 200K of DRAM.

OCAP compliance:

  • Set-tops from Scientific-Atlanta are OCAP 1.0 compliant; 2.0 is still under development.

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • PowerTV is in virtually all S-A set-tops (more than 10 million).

Major MSO/PTT partners:

  • Time Warner Cable, Comcast, Cox, Cablevision, Charter, Adelphia, Rogers, Videotron, Telewest.
Provider: WorldGate Communications

Middleware product platforms:

  • CableWare 2.0: Middleware for DCT1000/DCT2000 set-tops; facilitates multi- native application environment; includes carousel file system; includes tokenized HTML presentation engine; includes services portal menu capability; 128K flash memory footprint.
  • CableWare 3.0: All features of CableWare 2.0; adds Java; DCT2000 and above; 512K flash memory footprint.

OCAP compliance:

  • CableWare 2.0: No
  • CableWare 3.0: TVLite compliant

(TVLite is a standard developed jointly by AT&T, Java middleware vendors, and EPG providers for a version of JavaTV that can run on the DCT2000 that implements a specific subset of OCAP 1.0. TVLite-compliant applications will run without modification on OCAP platforms. A subset approach was necessary because the DCT2000 does not have adequate resources to run OCAP 1.0. WorldGate will be the first vendor to have a TVLite compliant middleware.)

Deployment figures/set-top deployments:

  • CableWare 2.0: Approximately 500,000
  • CableWare 3.0: Available Q1 2003

Major MSO/operator partners:

  • Comcast, Charter, Cox

Major application development partners:

  • Applications ported to CableWare 2.0 and 3.0: SeaChange, Concurrent, nCUBE, Wink, ICTV, TVGateway, WorldGate.

Major application development partners:

  • S-A and PowerTV develop many of the resident applications. Provide support to several third-party application developers including Concurrent, SeaChange, nCUBE, Wink, WorldGate, Liberate and MetaTV.
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