Fox Sports, Nickelodeon, Showtime and Starz’ Vongo will deliver on-demand and specialized content to the Microsoft Media Center. Media Center previously had its own operating system but is now part of the long-awaited Vista system, available Jan 30. Microsoft chairman Bill Gates wowed the CES crowd with a demo of Fox’s SportsLounge, which includes live video, customized real-time alerts and the ability to track fantasy football teams. Content will be free except Vongo, which caries a subscription fee. — Cox and Samsung are partnering on an OCAP-based interactive digital cable-ready TV with HD following a test of the product in Gainesville, FL, last month. — Digeo announced its standalone HD DVR to be sold at retail and not exclusively to cable. — Comcast and TiVo are demo-ing their long-awaited TiVo software for Comcast’s DVR. A trial of the service began late last year. The 2 developed a software application that will enable Comcast to deploy the service for a modest monthly fee to existing set-top boxes without an additional in-home visit by a technician. — TiVo and Music Choice inked a deal that will see the music programmer’s content delivered via broadband to the TiVoCast service. — Comcast and Panasonic are teaming up to test an interactive digital cable-ready HD plasma TV based on OCAP specs, which would allow consumers to access features such as VOD and electronic program guides without a digital set-top. The pair said the testing will likely run through ’07, with initial commercial availability of the 1st model slated for early ’08. Also in the works is digital cable set-top development and exploration of extensions to OCAP specs. — Microsoft unveiled a solution that integrates IPTV services within its Xbox 360 gaming console, allowing customers access to features such as voice chat, sending and receiving text and voice messages while watching TV. "IPTV on Xbox 360" is expected to be available by the end of ’07, and will be offered by providers that are deploying TV services over broadband networks based on the IPTV Edition software platform.

The Daily


ESPN Or is it E-S-p-i-n?

Chatter over whether Disney should spin off ESPN kicked up Friday after former NBC News journalist Dylan Byers reported that there are conversations regularly happening at Disney over whether the sports giant

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