Video software

Buckeye First to Test 'HITS AxIS'

Buckeye CableSystem an operator that serves about 150,000 subs in parts of Ohio and Michigan, has signed on to be the guinea pig for the HITS Advanced Interactive Services (AxIS), a centralized interactive television platform that's being headed up by the Comcast Media Center (CMC) , Motorola Inc. (NYSE: MOT) and a handful of other tech partners.

They introduced the concept in May, targeting it to small- and mid-sized cable operators. (See CMC Plays Host to iTV and Four More Join 'HITS AxIS'.)

Under the arrangement, Buckeye will serve as a "beta" site for the platform designed to use Enhanced Television-Binary Interchange Format, (ETV EBIF), which can be used by most digital cable boxes deployed today, and evolve to handle the more advanced tru2way platform.

Buckeye CableSystem EVP and CTO Joe Jensen said in a statement that the operator will use the trial as an opportunity to understand the AxIS service better, "but also to develop a further understanding of some of the ETV EBIF applications and their implications in our network." (See Buckeye to Test Drive HITS 'AxIS'.)

The CMC, meanwhile, hopes the test will pave the way for a country-wide launch of the platform.

The announcement comes just ahead of next week's conference in Orlando, Fla., for independent cable operators.

— Jeff Baumgartner, Site Editor, Cable Digital News

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