MediaFriends, Comcast Media Center dial up EBIF Caller ID app

Tue, 03/02/2010 - 7:35am
Mike Robuck

The Comcast Media Center (CMC) and MediaFriends have an EBIF (Enhanced TV Binary Interchange Format) Caller ID on TV application ready to be launched by cable operators that are using the CMC’s Hits Advanced Interactive Services (AxIS) platform.

A spokesman for the CMC said the Caller ID on TV application has been field-tested with Hits AxIS’ beta MSOs on live cable headends to employees and customers. The CMC has previously announced that Buckeye CableSystem, BendBroadband, MetroCast Communications and Sunflower Broadband have signed on as beta sites for the Hits AxIS service.

MediaFriends, formerly known as Integra5, was an early innovator for converged services such as Caller ID on TV and Caller ID on PC.

MediaFriends’ TV Caller ID is an EBIF-enabled iTV application that delivers personalized Caller ID notifications with onscreen call logs to multiple TVs in a home, and it is fully controlled by the user. MediaFriends lets users personalize Caller ID notifications with nicknames and send them to multiple TVs and PCs in the home.

Developed by MediaFriends and ported to the EBIF platform by MediaFriends and Hits AxIS, the Caller ID application helps cable operators reduce subscriber churn, as well as bring in incremental revenues. Hits is also working with MediaFriends on field-testing its EBIF-enabled Social TV application – MediaFriends Chat.

“TV Caller ID is just the beginning of integrating TV and real-time communication. The next step is true Social TV that enables friends to have a private chat onscreen, which is the next generation of EBIF services we’re testing through Hits AxIS now,” stated Meredith Flynn-Ripley, president and CEO of MediaFriends.  "MediaFriends has demonstrated its role as a leading onscreen Caller ID service in the country, and we’re delighted to offer more flexibility with our growing portfolio of EBIF-enabled services to cable system operators utilizing the Hits AxIS platform.”

In December, Hits announced that icueTV’s request for information, voting and polling, and t-commerce offerings were ready for commercial launches, as well as FourthWall Media’s Yellow Pages on TV application that was announced in October.

“MediaFriends’ TV Caller ID is a valuable addition to the lineup of EBIF applications that are commercially available via the Hits AxIS solution,” said Gary Traver, senior vice president and chief operating officer of Comcast Media Center, which operates Hits. “Cable system operators need to know that their investments in advanced video services will benefit their businesses in the near term, and MediaFriends, a pioneer in onscreen Caller ID applications, has the field experience for providing that type of assurance.”

For more on EBIF, check out last week’s Webinar here.

More Broadband Direct 3/02/10:
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•  Disney: ABC may go dark on Cablevision in N.Y.
•  Comcast takes reins of guide JV
•  Comcast updates iPhone app with remote DVR programming
•  MediaFriends, Comcast Media Center dial up EBIF Caller ID app
•  Comcast adds Hallmark, HSN to HD lineup in San Fran
•  Pace buys French gateway maker
•  Ergen: 'Much, much more focused now on Dish'
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•  Apple suing phone maker HTC over iPhone patents
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•  Broadband Briefs for 03/02/10



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