SOURCE: Zodiac Interactive

Zodiac Interactive

January 18, 2010 09:57 ET

Zodiac's EBIF Plays With Everyone

EBIF User Agent Breathes iTV Life Into New & Legacy Boxes

VALLEY STREAM, NY--(Marketwire - January 18, 2010) - Zodiac Interactive, an Emmy award-winning developer of software for interactive television, announced today that its EBIF™ (Enhanced TV Binary Interchange Format) player (user agent) is successfully operating using applications from multiple vendors and development environments within the cable iTV ecosystem, including NDS for addressable EBIF-based interactive ads to individual Cisco/Scientific Atlanta set-tops.

Additionally, Zodiac's EBIF UA (user agent) will be deployed this year by several Top 10 N. American MSOs, who are gearing up for commercial EBIF deployments in the first half of 2010, enabling iTV capabilities such as T-Commerce, addressable, targeted advertising and TV widgets, such as telescoping to long form content, voting, polling, click-to-call, caller ID, movie guides, local search and much more.

EBIF is a CableLabs®-specified platform that enables MSOs and programmers to deliver simple interactive applications across cable's entire universe of digital cable set-tops, including older, low-end models. EBIF requires a player that sits on top of the set-top. The Zodiac EBIF agent is uniquely fully compliant with CableLabs' EBIF specification.

"Our EBIF player/agent works well with all environments and applications because it follows the CableLabs' EBIF spec, without waiver," said Zodiac's CEO Brandon Brown. "Because the user agent was built from the ground up based on CableLabs specs, we can assure applications will run properly across various environments including legacy and new set-tops and iTV-enabled TVs, and more importantly, without another layer of integration concern."

EBIF deployments will come fast and furious from MSOs (as part of the industry's Canoe initiative) who have EBIF-enabled about 25 million set-top boxes in 2009. By the first half of 2010, MSOs will start to generate revenue from their EBIF-enabled homes.

Brown continued, "The N. American cable industry is looking to EBIF's simple interactive capabilities as a step toward a more advanced iTV experience, but all EBIF players must carefully follow the specs to avoid interoperability issues, and most don't, which is why iTV still hasn't hit mass adoption. Zodiac's EBIF player/agent gives operators the jump start they need to bring interactivity to the TV -- no other EBIF agent can cross both legacy set-top boxes and next gen TVs and set-tops, which is a key differentiator for Zodiac."

Cable's quick movement toward deploying EBIF represents a lofty step toward advanced interactive TV, including tru2way®. With tru2way, however, new boxes are needed. With EBIF, simple iTV applications can be added quickly to existing and new boxes and TVs.

Zodiac's EBIF player will help advance the deployment of standards-based interactive television. Zodiac is one of several MSOs and vendors on board to beta test a hosted EBIF service headed up by the Comcast Media Center (CMC).

About Zodiac Interactive

Zodiac Interactive is an Emmy winning developer of software for interactive television. Zodiac's PowerUp™ Framework is cross-platform software that unifies and enables advanced TV applications across multiple set-tops. The core of PowerUp, with its open APIs and libraries, makes it easy for iTV service providers to develop and deploy advanced TV services, such as user interfaces, EBIF™, EPGs, tru2way®, voting, polling, VOD, OTT Web-Services, click-to-call and other features demanded by operators today. For more information, visit www.zodiac.tv.

Interactive Television 2.0 and PowerUp are trademarks of Zodiac Interactive. EBIF™ is a trademark and tru2way® is a registered trademark of Cable Television Laboratories, Inc. Other company, product and service names mentioned herein may be trademarks or service marks of their respective owners.

Contact Information

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