Driven by computer and network technologies, TV is undergoing a paradigm shift that is not only changing TV itself but also how people consume media and make it an integral part of their daily lives.
Microsoft mediaroom: Microsoft’s connected TV services platform
Changing the meaning of TV
The commercial roll-out of IPTV brings a range of features that mark a significant shift in what TV means: high-definition live TV channels, advanced video on demand (VOD) and digital video recording (DVR).
And giving the consumer real control
Faced with an increased variety of new channels and new media, it is critical that the consumer experiences this variety as a benefit and not as a burden. This means empowering the consumer, so that:
- Technology aids in the selection of the TV offerings based on the consumer's preferences,
- Technology aids in aligning the TV offerings with the consumer's schedule (allowing for interruption and restarting of live streams) rather than dictating the schedule, and
- Technology aids in integrating TV more seamlessly into the consumer's environment, e.g. by enabling a gaming console and the PC to operate in conjunction with the TV.
Furthermore, broadband allows two-way communication, enabling consumers to use the backchannel for requests and feedback, and thus more personalisation.
These developments pose several challenges: IPTV providers need to acquire, manage and protect the content (which consumer subscribed to which service and has access to which content) and distribute it. Consequently, effective partnership is essential between content creators, service providers and technology platforms - both to drive an integrated telecommunication service and to enhance the consumer's experience.
Peter Yves Ruland, Microsoft TV, presents Microsoft Mediaroom
This is the vision behind Microsoft Mediaroom, a platform that combines all the components that telecommunications companies need in order to deploy a robust IPTV service, from content acquisition, distribution and protection, to on-demand video streaming, digital video recording, and service and subscriber management. For the consumer, Mediaroom enables both personalisation and mobility through, for example, remote digital video recording from a mobile phone or web-connected pc, and personal media sharing on the TV, by providing centralised access to digital photos and music stored on PCs in the home.
Today, Microsoft Mediaroom is supporting major customer relationships with Europe's largest broadband service providers such as BT in the United Kingdom and Deutsche Telecom in Germany. More than 18 service providers worldwide have selected the Microsoft Mediaroom platform for their digital TV offerings, and commercial deployments are currently underway with another eight providers.