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Scientific-Atlanta giving Europe interactive TV

Wed, 09/13/2000 - 8:00pm
Karen Kessler

WorldGate may have created the software, but Scientific-Atlanta has created the whole enchilada. Unveiled in Amsterdam, the European DVB-compliant (digital video broadcasting) set-top is capable of delivering real-time, two-way interactive applications, such as Internet access, e-mail over TV, enhanced TV and T-commerce. There are already 2.3 million Explorer set-tops deployed in Europe, and a contract for a quarter million more for ntl, the United Kingdom's largest cable provider.

"This technology hasn't been available in Europe before last week," said Paul Sims, director of public relations at SA. "This opens the door to a very exciting market in Europe as well as other markets, like Latin America and Asia. There is strong interest from those markets, as well as Scientific-Atlanta's interest, but no specific dates have been set for deployment."

There are nearly three million Explorer set-tops deployed in the U.S. and Canada, with the same interactive capabilities: VoD, e-mail over TV and PoD (pizza on-demand). Time Warner Oceanic deployed the Explorer set-tops approximately a year ago in Honolulu. Most recently, Time Warner Tampa launched VoD for 35,000 subs, with plans to ramp up to 300,000 by year-end, said Sims.

In other news, Scientific-Atlanta will provide fiber optic products and systems for Sudcable Services of France. The fiber optic network will expand Sudcable's ability to deliver expanded services over its cable system.

Scientific-Atlanta will provide optical transmitters, dual reverse receivers, optical nodes and amplifiers.

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