TiVo has been talking about providing virtual content channels for a while and now they’ve opened the offering with the biggest brand in the World.
The 25 minute entertainment program called “Sound Check” will be available exclusively to TiVo owners.
Cover music from Geffen, Interscope A&M artists such as Ashanti, Sting, Mary J. Blige and Leona Naess, it will feature interviews, music videos, behind-the-scenes footage, live performances and recording sessions.
There will be two methods of accessing the content. A short preview of the program will be made available in TiVo “Showcases” and if tempted, the viewer can have the full program delivered to them simply by clicking their remote control.
The second, and we think, more interesting uses something that TiVo are using called a “telescope tag”. When viewing a “Coca-Cola … Real” advert a “Thumbs Up” icon will appear on screen. If this appeals to the viewer, they simply click on the remote and the recording of the branded program is automatically scheduled. None of the viewer precious TV viewing time will be taken away from them, as the original content they were watching will be paused and automatically restarted after this process has finished. The telescope tag feature and Thumbs Up icon will also function if the view is fast-forwarding through content.
TiVo appears to have learnt from the disastrous incident when they forced UK TiVo’s to automatically record the BBC TV show “Dosser and Jo” back in May 2002 – then didn’t allow it to be deleted for a week.
We will be pursuing more details of this, as we feel it leaves a lot of questions unanswered, among them, how will the branded programing be delivered if it isn’t broadcast over a normal channel?, will it be available to TiVo owners worldwide or just in the US?, how will the telescope tagging be delivered?, will it be in advance of the advertising? plus many more.
One of the things that gets us most excited about future of a Digital Lifestyle is the alternative paths of content delivery that are opened up by the technology. This is a good early move.
Expect plenty more deals like this coming along.