Social Media Meets the Set-Top Box with FreedTV

Wednesday, December 16th, 2009 

Breakthrough Social TV Platform Enhances Tradition of Watching Television with Real-Time Tools

BOULDER, Colo. — Television and social media company FreedTV today announced the first cross-platform social media television application supporting real-time connectivity to mainstream television set-top boxes (STBs). In association with its Facebook WIWA (What I’m Watching) application and iPhone application, FreedTV combines the compelling content of broadcast and cable television with the peer-to-peer communication of social networking to create a new standard in interactive television.

“Television viewing was once a social experience based on ‘event’ programming, like ‘The Wonderful World of Disney’ on Sunday evenings,” said Brent Dix, FreedTV president. “That viewing experience has changed as a result of viewer fragmentation. FreedTV re-establishes the social element without the physical constraints, allowing viewers to share their TV life with their friends wherever those friends may be.”

Using a cloud-based server and specialized software, FreedTV allows users to quickly find their friends and see what programs they are watching. In addition to identifying their own programming choices, real-time messaging capabilities allow users to join each other in a virtual TV room to share the viewing experience. FreedTV is compatible with all video service providers, content providers, broadcast and cable networks and Internet video sites.

“FreedTV has the capability to run real-time on existing networks and across multiple platforms, including the Facebook WIWA application on the PC, the Video Service Provider (VSP) application on the STB, and the Mobile application on the iPhone,” said John Carlucci, FreedTV CTO. “All three interfaces were successfully demonstrated at the CableLabs Summer Conference using standard, widely-deployed boxes running live on a Comcast local cable system.”

FreedTV’s VSP application can run on all EBIF, Tru2way, and WebKit-capable STBs including the entry-level two-way capable boxes that number in the millions.

“Many interactive TV applications require too much processing power, graphics capabilities and/or network bandwidth,” said Carlucci. “FreedTV is the only platform-agnostic application that can run smoothly in all of these environments.”