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The CoTV™ Portal for MSOs
     (...or Satellite, IPTV, TelcoTV, etc.)
A new way to profit from simultaneous media use now

CoTVLogo.jpg (3779 bytes)

CoTV™ linkage of TV and PC can be done in a variety of ways:
Cable operators (MSOs) can leverage their unique real-time access to individual viewer activity to offer a unique CoTV™ Web Portal that drives the viewer's PC in full synchrony with whatever they are watching on TV.

This provides new value to users, programmers, and advertisers that MSOs can profit from. It can be deployed using existing customer premise equipment (basic two-way STBs, and standard PCs).

Much of this can apply to DBS satellite distributors as well, when the satellite box is connected to a back-channel, such as by DSL (or satellite), and to other distribution services such as IPTV or TelcoTV.

Core features

The CoTV™ Web service provides a viewer-specific focal point to organize and promote all PC-based user interaction related to TV viewing, including direct access to enhancements to any and all programs as they are viewed. Unlike conventional, dumber forms of "sync-TV," it fully coordinates with channel changes, VOD, DVRs, trick-play, and addressable targeting.

  • Advertising enhancement smart-sync - fully synchronized windows for direct response and supplementary content related to ads (with full activity tracking). Advertiser funded incentives can be offered to stimulate regular use.
  • Program enhancement smart-sync - fully synchronized windows for content and interaction. Coverage can be phased in special-interest channel/program genres aimed at groups of heavy interactors:
    • Sports
    • News (general, financial, etc.)
    • Movies
    • Games, Reality, Kids, etc.
  • Smart Electronic Program Guides (EPGs) - presented in high-resolution format, under viewer control, including power grids, sophisticated program discovery tools and organizers, and rich magazine format alternatives, using advanced personalization with 100% private filters and intelligent agent / recommender functions, and with direct linkage to TV tuning

The CoTV Web service can operate much like an ordinary Web portal (and can be seamlessly integrated into an ordinary Web portal) -- it simply adds support to relate Web pages to TV-context (and vice versa).

The Web service/portal can do this based on linkage of the TV and PC through the cable head-end.  The TV link need only report and respond to channel changes – that can be done using installed set-top-boxes, with only simple, downloadable, software changes, and with very low bandwidth impact.  The head-end tracks the user's viewing, and coordinates with the viewer's PC through a CoTV portal, as shown below.  (This tracking can be kept fully private, and encrypted outside the home.)

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This builds on the standard function of a cable TV viewing, as shown in the upper portion of the diagram.

The addition of CoTV enables PCs in each room to be coordinated with the TV in that room, as shown in the lower portion of the diagram. 

  • This offers the viewer coordinated use of both a "lean-back" (or "ten-foot") user interface, and a "lean-forward" (or "two-foot") userface. 
  • This can be used in a single room, and can also support multiple users (or groups of users) with TVs in multiple rooms, each coordinated as an independent group by CoTV software. 
The user experience of the CoTV™ Portal is simulated in a Demo

Benefits to MSOs (or satellite operators)  

  • MSO control of smart-sync information enables a unique ability to offer a wide range of Web-based services that others cannot match.
  • Advertiser fees can be obtained for smart-sync services, and substantial t-commerce revenue or performance-based fees can be generated by direct response to TV ads.
  • Subscriber fees can be obtained for smart-sync services, once consumer awareness of their value is established (such as after a trial period).
  • Cross-selling of digital cable with broadband service--and reduction of churn--can be fueled by CoTV™ viewing (which motivates always-on Web access)
  • Allied Web-based services can achieve high margin by leveraging viewer interest and activity relating to TV and the CoTV™ Portal
  • Minimal capital expense is required, since no new customer premises equipment is needed. Proliferation of wireless laptops and PC tablets, along with WiFi networks (driven by demands other than CoTV), will encourage increased usage.

Benefits to viewers, programmers, and advertisers

  • Viewers can obtain powerful TV-related Web features that exploit their Web-savvy and minimize interference with TV viewing, with almost no added effort. The CoTV™ Web Portal coordinates seamlessly with the TV to create a powerful, user-centric control center for TV-related Web features -- one that supports serious interactivity. (And smart-sync data privacy can be fully contolled.).  See Why I want my CoTV™.
  • Advertisers can achieve the full benefit of rich interactivity and direct response to make their expenditures far more productive and accountable, and can leverage current Web skills, standards, and back-end systems.   See Integrating TV and Web Advertising.
  • Programmers can develop a full range of enhancements to build audience involvement without the severe constraints of one TV screen, and can leverage Web skills and standards.  Traffic to programmer enhancement sites will increase as users are automatically linked to relevant enhancements, without need to know of their existence and their URL (and without need for costly on-air promotion).

No barriers to crossing the chasm

There are no fundamental or steep hurdles to rapid deployment and contagious growth to scale.

  • CoTV™ Web Portals can be introduced with basic EPG and smart-sync advertising features, possibly starting with a content focus such as movies or sports, and grow as usage and content explands
  • Millions of households already have all needed equipment, and many more will soon.
  • Incremental subscriber growth can be achieved at low cost with basic STBs and cable modems.
  • Further subscriber growth will be facilitated by proliferation of wireless laptops and tablets, and home networks
  • Peer exposure and word of mouth can produce viral demand that is readily accomodated
  • Local cable advertisers can begin to benefit from highly focused direct response ads.
  • National reach can be cobbled from scattered MSO initiatives, based on consistent Web-based technology
  • Advanced features are fully supportable: VOD, DVRs, trick-play, and addressable targeting
  • Adoption of basic CoTV™ service can stimulate demand for advanced STBs with one-box interactivity, as a fully compatible extension

Synergies that CoTV™ adds to VOD and cable broadband modem services

The diagram below shows how CoTV can accelerate and stimulate revenues for a range of digital cable services.  The colored arrows show capital expense investments (red) and offsetting revenues (green), with rough magnitudes indicated by how far down the line extends. 

To the left of the first dotted line, it shows investment in digital bandwidth and two-way back-channels, at high capital cost -- enabling VOD, which is beginning to yield high revenue.  To the right of the second dotted line, it shows one-screen ITV, with its sizable investment in advanced STBs, and its large (but unproven) revenue returns.  As shown, this has been delayed, due to lack of capital and confidence.

Between the dotted lines, it shows the new synergies enabled by CoTV.  CoTV can be added to exploit the two-way back-channel already installed for VOD, with very modest added investment.   It can generate significant ITV revenues — presumably not much less than one-screen ITV (and arguably even more).  That could be justification in itself, given the low capex and potentially short time-to-market.

But CoTV adds further synergies (shown by the heavy black arrows):  Use of CoTV makes an always-on connection highly attractive, and thus can cross-sell cable modem service.  In addition, a thick-client CoTV-based EPG can provide powerful features for dealing with the “every show ever recorded” riches of VOD -- and thus increase VOD sales, by making it less likely that desired programs will go unnoticed.  Such an EPG can also provide a high power grids with advanced user interfaces for scanning hundreds of channels.

CableVOD.gif (13650 bytes)

Teleshuttle offers license to CoTV patents.

CoTV technology can be offered by service providers in TV, Internet, e-commerce, and allied fields. Teleshuttle seeks to cooperate with all industry participants to develop and apply these methods to facilitate simultaneous media multitasking, to assist in the development of services, reference designs, and standards, and to license this technology broadly for widespread use.

Richard Reisman -- Bio

Contact Information

Richard R. Reisman, President, Teleshuttle Corporation
20 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10003

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Coactive media:  Relating to media multitasking.  The simultaneous or alternating use of two or more media, such as TV and Internet (Web, etc.), especially where the using of the media is synchronized or coordinated typically (but not necessarily) on multiple devices or screens.

Coactive TV:  Relating to multitasking use of both television and the Internet (Web, etc.).  The simultaneous or alternating use of TV and the Internet, especially where the using of both media is coordinated or synchronized, and especially where the TV and the Internet browser are automatically coordinated with one another typically (but not necessarily) on multiple devices or screens.

Copyright 2011, Teleshuttle Corp. All rights reserved. / Patents pending