REDMOND, Wash., and Mexico City, June 7, 2001 — Microsoft Corp. and Cablevision (CVC), a subsidiary of Grupo Televisa S.A., today announced the first Latin American trial of advanced interactive TV services. According to the terms of the letter of intent, Microsoft® TV Server and Microsoft TV Advanced client software will deliver a complete interactive TV solution using the Motorola DCT5000 advanced interactive set-tops. The trial is scheduled to begin in Mexico later this year with broad commercial deployment to follow.
In order to meet customer demand for advanced interactive services, it is the goal of Cablevision to upgrade 30 percent of its subscriber base to Motorola’s advanced interactive set-tops powered by Microsoft TV Advanced. Subscribers will receive rich new features such as an Electronic Program Guide, walled garden services, e-mail, t-commerce, and select enhanced TV programming for news, sports and soap operas. Microsoft and Cablevision expect to deploy at least 350,000 set-tops over the next three years.
“Cablevision has proven itself as a leader in providing new technology and services for its Latin American customers,”
said Jon DeVaan, senior vice president of the TV Division at Microsoft.
“The trial in Mexico demonstrates Cablevision’s commitment to providing a rich experience with advanced interactive services and is a great example of the capabilities of the Microsoft TV platform and the new opportunities it represents for network operators.”
Cablevision’s new interactive TV service will mark the fourth service worldwide and the first service in Latin America to be based on Microsoft TV Advanced. Other services powered by Microsoft TV Advanced include UltimateTV® service with DIRECTV® in the United States, TV Cabo in Portugal and THOMSON TAK in France. This announcement also reaffirms Microsoft’s commitment to the Latin American cable market. Microsoft now has agreements with the largest cable network operators in Brazil and Mexico: Globo Cabo in Brazil and Cablevision in Mexico.
“Cablevision chose Microsoft’s advanced TV platform because we believe it is the best solution,”
said Pablo Vazquez, chief executive officer of Cablevision.
“Our customers are demanding new services now, and we needed an interactive TV platform that could be deployed quickly to support the most advanced features and provide us with new revenue streams to build on our current business. Microsoft’s superior platform, combined with the advanced features of Motorola’s DCT5000 digital set-top, will help us accomplish this.”
In addition to the Microsoft TV Advanced software running on Motorola set-tops, Cablevision intends to use Microsoft TV Server to provision and manage the delivery of the new interactive TV services. Microsoft TV Server is a head-end solution designed to be the foundation of a network operator’s service, providing the tools to provision, manage and operate a large-scale, commercial-grade interactive TV service. Microsoft TV Server integrates with Microsoft TV Advanced client software, creating an optimized, end-to-end interactive TV software platform.
“Cablevision’s interactive TV services will be the some of the most advanced ever delivered in Latin America, and we are pleased to participate in this trial with Cablevision and Microsoft,”
said Denton Kanouff, vice president and general manager of Motorola’s Worldwide Interactive Network Systems business unit.
“Motorola is committed to launching advanced interactive digital services with our customers around the world. Cablevision Mexico has been one of the leaders, having launched Motorola’s interactive digital platform for its customers since September 2000. We are proud to be a longtime partner of both Cablevision and Microsoft, and our relationships continue to foster new opportunities for advanced interactive TV services.”
The DCT5000 platform is Motorola’s most powerful interactive digital broadband platform, delivering an unprecedented level of processing and graphics capabilities to the digital interactive market. The DCT5000 set-top represents the leading edge in next-generation interactive digital cable systems and consumer set-top terminals.
The Cablevision interactive TV service powered by Microsoft TV will be showcased at Cable 2001, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) convention in the Microsoft TV booth, No. #2300, and Motorola’s booth, No. #1700.
Cablevision is the largest cable television operator in Mexico based on its number of subscribers and homes passed. Its concession area consists of Mexico City and surrounding areas in the State of Mexico, one of the largest cable television markets in Latin America and one of the largest cities in the world in terms of population. Cablevision is the only cable television operator and high-speed Internet access provider through cable modem in Mexico City, as well as the only provider of digital cable television services in Mexico.
Grupo Televisa S.A. is the largest media company in the Spanish-speaking world, and a major player in the international entertainment business. It has interests in television production and broadcasting, programming for pay television, international distribution of television programming, direct-to-home satellite services, publishing and publishing distribution, music recording, cable television, radio production and broadcasting, professional sports and show business promotions, paging services, feature film production and distribution, dubbing and the operation of a horizontal Internet portal. Grupo Televisa also has an unconsolidated equity stake in Univision, the leading Spanish-language television company in the United States.
About the Microsoft TV Platform
The Microsoft TV platform is a standards-based, client and server software family that enables network operators and their partners to deliver the most compelling interactive TV services to consumers. The platform supports a range of TV devices – from current and next-generation set-top boxes and digital video recorders to integrated television sets, entertainment appliances and other computing devices. Through the platform, network operators and hardware providers can team up to offer consumers an unparalleled range of services, from e-mail and Internet on television to interactive programming, electronic program guides and digital video recording.
Microsoft TV also creates significant new economic opportunities for network operators and industry leaders worldwide who have chosen to work with the platform to deliver or supply the services, programming, hardware and software for interactive TV. Microsoft TV supports open standards and is backed by the technical expertise, support and broad third-party developer community for which Microsoft is known. It is an integral part of the Microsoft .NET vision of empowering people through great software – any time, any place and on any device. More information about the Microsoft TV platform can be found at http://www.microsoft.com/tv/ .
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.
This press release contains forward-looking statements regarding results and prospects of Microsoft and Cablevision. Actual results could differ materially from these statements. Important factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those contained in forward-looking statements made in this press release and in oral statements made by authorized officers of Microsoft, Cablevision and Motorola include, but are not limited to, the risk that Microsoft and Cablevision may not be able to meet the goals and targets described in this press release, among others, and, in the case of Microsoft, other risks detailed from time to time in the its filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of their dates. Neither Microsoft nor Cablevision undertakes any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
Microsoft and UltimateTV are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.
DIRECTTV is a registered trademark of DIRECTTV Inc., a unit of Hughes Electronics Corp.
The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.
Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.