Comcast Media Center Launches ITV Services

Comcast Media Center announced HITS Advanced Interactive Services (AxIS), which provide a centralized hosting platform for developing interactive TV applications and will let smaller cable operators deploy them.

HITS AxIS will provide a centralized resource to support the development, delivery and management of advanced interactive applications. In addition, according to CMC, the service will give cable system operators an alternative to headend-based solutions for launching and supporting interactive video applications.

CMC is collaborating on the new service with TVWorks, a joint venture of Comcast and Cox, and Vidiom Systems. HITS AxIS is supporting product development activities for Alticast, Biap, Emuse, Ensequence, Sofia Digital, vivoTrak and Zodiac Interactive.

“In the CMC tradition, the HITS AxIS service will provide the content community with the tools they need for creating advanced services from a facility that can also deploy those services over a broad footprint and provide efficient and ongoing management support,” CMC chief operating officer Gary Traver said, in a statement. 

CMC’s services for ITV developers encompass business modeling, licensing and application testing for the current ETV EBIF (Enhanced Television-Binary Interchange Format) specification and the emerging tru2way platform.

For small and midsize operators, Traver said, HITS AxIS represents an “end-to-end solution that shifts much of the burden associated with offering these services to a content management center, and thereby supports the industry’s vision for a ubiquitous ‘plug and play’ experience for any and all cable customers, regardless of market size.”

HITS AxIS deployment services will include configuration, hosting, affiliate sales, contract management and product launches on HITS’ cable system affiliates.

CMC said HITS Quantum affiliates will be able to offer interactive services to their customers using their existing headend management systems.