Cable Show 2010: Rovi to Pitch "Total Guide" to Cable

Cable Show 2010: Complete Coverage
Rovi Corp. will be showing its own
advances in the interactive program guide market at NCTA. The company
sells electronic program guides to TV-set makers like Vizio and Sony and
licenses set-top guides to operators like Comcast and Cox, which still
uses Rovi's Passport guide for Motorola set-tops. It will demonstrate a
new version of the Total Guide product it introduced at CES that is
tailored to multichannel operators.
Rovi's Total Guide for Service
Providers is aimed at maintaining the company's market share in its
pay-TV business as operators move to more advanced set-tops. Like Cox's
new Trio guide (see separate story), it provides integrated search of
linear, VOD and timeshifted content. It also makes heavy use of
program-related metadata, which Rovi pulls from both TV Guide and its
own data businesses for movies and music. A feature called Six Degrees
of Discovery provides a portal-like search feature to find favorite
actors or movies.
"We do it in a way that links all the stuff
together," says Rovi VP of Marketing David Jordan. "We will provide you
with a way to start from any one point, so you're not just
channel-surfing, but meta-[data] surfing."
While the new Rovi guide
still uses the traditional grid format for channel listings, it has
enhanced the format by placing promotional artwork next to individual
show listings. It will also make recommendations, based on both
algorithms tracking viewers' habits and reviews from Rovi editorial
Rovi has been developing the pay-TV version of Total Guide for
the past year and a half, and expects to roll it out with operators
next year.