Bethpage, N.Y. - Cable TV giant
has introduced a PC to TV Media Relay service that will allow Cablevision digital cable subscribers to relay information, images and digital entertainment content from the PC to their television screens in real time, without any additional equipment.
The service, which will essentially take the place of so-called media bridge devices offered as separate set-top boxes or integrated into various home networking components from CE manufacturers, is said to use only Cablevision's advanced fiber-rich network. The application will enable transferring PC data collected from a hard drive or from a PC connection to the Web, to the television for viewing on a dedicated channel that is accessible only by that customer, Cablevision said.
The cable TV operator said it plans to begin a technical trial of the PC to TV Media Relay by June 2010.
"With our PC to TV Media Relay service, we are putting an end to the need for families to huddle around their laptops or PCs to watch content together," Tom Rutledge, Cablevision's chief operating officer, said in a statement. "This new service will make it easy for our television customers to take broadband services including Internet video, as well as family photos or anything else displayed on a computer screen and move it to the television with the click of the mouse."
Specific examples of the kind of content that consumers currently view on their PC, and will now be viewable on the television include:
* Personal stored media such as photos, home videos and music;
* Internet content, including streaming video sites and audio such as Internet radio;
* Some productivity applications, including email, documents and spreadsheets;
* Other desktop applications including widgets.
Cablevision said its service will enable the customer to securely send information on their PC in real time through Cablevision's network facilities to a dedicated channel viewable only by that customer.
"The service will completely eliminate the need to change input settings on the TV, as is the case with most in-home networking alternatives, or to purchase and install expensive additional equipment," Cablevision said in a statement announcing the service. "A simple one-time software download to the computer will enable the PC to TV Media Relay service.
Cablevision, which has been slow to adopt mandated infrastructure to enable set-top TV receiving equipment with Tru2way digital CableCARD slots, which would open up CE retailing of cable receiving devices from multiple manufacturers, previously introduced a digital video recorder service that remotely stores recorded content at the local cable system head end, as a replacement for digital video recorders - like TiVo boxes.