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GoldPocket, Liberate Opt to Integrate

Helping to close the gap between Web-based and TV-based interactivity, GoldPocket Interactive announced a deal last week with Liberate Technologies Inc. to integrate its advanced media technology with Liberate’s Java and XML powered TV Navigator 5.2 software.

This should make it easier for content developers to port existing PC-and-TV interactive content to a set-top environment, the companies said.

GoldPocket said programmers can use its StoryTeller software to create enhanced TV applications, interactive ads, games and virtual channels on Liberate’s TV Navigator platform.

Those applications can run on existing set-tops from Motorola Inc. and Scientific-Atlanta Inc., as well as other future OpenCable Applications Platform-compliant devices.

“We will be able to leverage the content our customers are putting out,” said GoldPocket president Scott Newnam, “and it will seamlessly work on cable systems.”

Newnam said GoldPocket began develop work with Liberate in the late 1990s. As the ITV industry experienced boom and bust, it became clearer who the major players were, speeding the pace of integration work, he said

“We had an early version on Liberate’s 3.4 platform,” Newnam said. “We’re bringing that up to speed to make it full ITV production standards complaint, and make it available on Java and On Ramp systems.”

Phil Vachon, president of Liberate International, said the company is actively marketing its new software products to existing European affiliates. It recently signed a deal with Cox Communications Inc. in the U.S.

Vachon said Liberate’s 5.2 product is now going through lab trials at Motorola and S-A, adding that the software will be OCAP-compatible. Vachon said TV Navigator can work on set-tops that are currently deployed, even the 2000 series.

“We’re not fighting over things like memory,” he said. “We work on flash management and memory management. It’s all about management of resources in the box. We have to have something that performs well on millions and millions of boxes out there.”