Multi-screen video

Rovi Debuts Cloud-Based Multiscreen Guide

Rovi is debuting a new cloud-based TV program guide in front of an Amsterdam audience at the IBC show today.

Built on HTML5, the new multiscreen video Rovi Guide is designed for both legacy set-top boxes and next-generation devices. It is also "expected to enable the integration of" Rovi Corp. 's content search and recommendation features, natural-language interaction technology and the company's extensive set of entertainment metadata.

The Rovi Guide is the latest iteration of the company's Total Guide and Total Guide xD, which it introduced in 2011. However, while the Total Guide product line was a collection of individual solutions for individual platforms, a spokesperson explained, the new Rovi Guide is based on a unified HTML5 code base. The technology isn't tied to any one middleware platform, which means it should give Rovi an opportunity to expand further into global markets.

Rovi has also emphasized that its new guide allows for integration with third-party applications and services. In the product news release the company noted that "this capability is expected to help service providers quickly on-board additional value-added offerings for subscribers, such as home security or interest-specific apps for weather, streaming video or music."

As a company, Rovi is still trying to redefine itself in the post-set-top duopoly years. Before the advent of the CableCARD and the explosive momentum behind IP video, Rovi had a virtual lock on all Motorola set-tops as the pre-installed user interface. Now, however, the company faces a much more crowded competitive field and has expanded further into the consumer electronics industry to counter diminishing control over the service provider space.

For ongoing coverage of the constantly developing multiscreen video and TV guide markets, visit Light Reading's multiscreen video content channel.

Rovi has also extended its technology interests into fields that include interactive advertising and audience data analytics. In February, Rovi acquired Veveo Inc. 's voice-enabled semantic search technology, which is now part of the company's suite of content discovery services. (See Rovi Snaps Up Veveo and Rovi Makes It Personal.)

The company said the new Rovi Guide should be available for testing in Europe and the Americas next month, and "ready for integration in 2015."

— Mari Silbey, special to Light Reading

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