Industry leaders create new Connected TV Game Forum

Tuesday, January 5th, 2010

LAS VEGAS — A selection of the world’s foremost interactive companies are establishing a new forum for the development of games on connected TV, namely Accedo, Betfair, PlayJam, RallyPoint and Two Way Media.

Online games are a major driver in the multi-platform digital entertainment arena, attracting 38% of internet users whilst generating billions of downloads via mobile phone applications and digital TV platforms. Moreover, they create new revenue streams from a frequent and loyal user base. For example, gaming on social media sites already generate more than $500M in micro-transactions every year.* The Forum’s partners believe games will act as a prime motivator for consumers to connect their TVs to the internet.

The Connected TV Game Forum aims to galvanise a common approach to gaming requirements for connected TV devices including functionality, features and open standards. The Forum seeks to voice a clear, collective opinion on the requisite technical and commercial factors for compelling games services, primarily targeting key consumer electronics platforms. The Connected TV Forum openly invites all companies wishing to work closely on and benefit from this opportunity.

Each of the founding partners brings valued experience and insight to the Forum, having created reputable software and applications for interactive platforms.

“Casual gaming is clearly one of the great opportunities for Connected TV and has proven consumer interest and willingness to pay,” commented Michael Lantz, CEO, Accedo Broadband. “At Accedo we remain committed to the vision of Connected TV, and will through the forum jointly drive gaming and application requirements and standards for any online TV solution”.

“Betfair is excited by the opportunity offered by connected television and fully supports the Connected TV Game Forum in its promotion of gaming services that can be delivered over this new platform ,” says Simon Miller, CEO, Betfair TV. “Games and Gaming applications will become key revenue streams for manufacturers and operators, and we expect the forum will make a strong case for platform standardisation so that new products can be brought to market quickly and distributed easily.”

“The combination of Internet and the television in the form of ‘TV Apps’ is a perfect combination for the thirty million die hard fantasy sports gamers that watch live sports broadcasts and track detailed stats on the Internet,” said Jeff Allen. “As more connected TV platforms come to the market, it is important that device OEMs work with content owners and aggregators to promote common user interfaces and standards so that consumers will not become disenchanted with this huge promise.”

“Following the success of PlayJam games via digital TV platforms across Europe, Asia and the US, we believe that the next generation of connected TVs presents an even greater commercial opportunity” says PlayJam CEO Jasper Smith. “However, it is essential for manufacturers and other developers to gain a more detailed understanding of the economics and technology in order to create an optimal environment that maximises both consumers’ experience and manufacturers’ profits.”

“Two Way has been making games for TV for more than 10 years so we know that the combination of TV and gaming is a compelling consumer proposition,” commented James Turner, CEO of Two Way Media. “We want to work with others in the industry to ensure that Connected TV is an excellent gaming platform, both to play and to develop for, which will ultimately guarantee its commercial success.”

The Connected TV Game Forum invites other companies developing games and gaming related applications to join the forum to provide synchronised requirements to the Connected TV Industry.

*Statistics from Casual Connect Kiev Oct 2009