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Exclusive Video from Verizon HQ!

A while back I journeyed up to Verizon HQ with Motorolan Evan Groat to talk about FiOS TV and the underlying Motorola hardware platform.  We met up with Verizon’s Steven Haire and blogger/tweeter extraordinaire John Czwartacki, and, for several hours, not only talked, but shot video of some of the best FiOS TV features in action. The video above splices together segments of the conversation with b-roll of multi-room DVR, the latest widgets in the FiOS IMG 1.6 guide, and new menu options for VOD and Media Manager.

Part of the genesis of this video was the launch of HD support for multi-room DVR (rolling out to the entire FiOS footprint by the end of the year) and the addition of video to Media Manager’s PC-to-TV networking. I have said time and time again that in-home networking capabilities should be getting more attention than they do. For all the blog talk about hooking up media extenders and buying the right cables for the right ports to connect TVs and PCs, those solutions are simply not practical for most people. The networking process is invisible with FiOS, just the way it should be.

A few notes on the technology side of things. First, Motorola has worked extremely closely with Verizon to make the in-home networking applications possible. Continued updates to the hardware platform have made it possible to stream HD and support the high levels of processing required for graphic-rich features including gaming and VOD cover art. Second, pay attention to the discussion in the video on IPTV. While Verizon’s network isn’t all IP, the operator is continually adding IP applications to FiOS TV to personalize the service and make it more interactive. Third, did you know EBIF is embedded in IMG 1.6? Despite being around for years, the interactive TV standard is getting mass deployments for the first time. Verizon isn’t the only one focused on EBIF either.

Finally, keep in mind that the video here was shot entirely with a Flip video camera and edited with Windows Movie Maker. Be kind to an amateur!

Final, final note: You’ll see stacks of set-tops in the multi-room DVR set-up. That’s not because you need stacks of set-tops to make multi-room DVR work. The Verizon demo/conference room is set up that way to illustrate performance among groups of subscribers.

12 Responses

  1. Verizon Fios is absolutely amazing. They are doing wonderful things with their software suite on the Motorola platform. Not only that but their channel lineup is always increasing and they have to have the most HD anywhere by now. I wish I could get rid of the Comcast ball and chain, but Verizon will not build Fios in my little area of Berks County, PA. I would order Fios triple play bundle the day it becomes available in my area.

    Cable giants such as Comcast really need to take a look at the Motorola platform they are currently using and figure out how to fully utilize it. I say it’s time to fire Macrovision and get some new talent in house to bring the interface into the 21st century along with digital media features and internet connectivity. Cable operators just don’t realize the potential of the equipment they have. Only AT&T U-Verse and Verizon Fios have feature filled, modern interfaces for their Motorola gear. Glad to see that the hardware is capable of such great feats. Motorola should hound cable operators of these features so the cable giants don’t make Motorola gear look so bad.

  2. When will we finally get a 16×9 native guide?

  3. @cypherstream All of the operators have their own priorities. But I’ll tell you it’s certainly not a matter of any operator not knowing what Motorola’s hardware can do. :)

    @Justin Don’t have an answer for that. Probably better asked of Verizon’s CZ over on Twitter: http://twitter.com/CZ

  4. [...] with plans to roll out to all 20 million Motorola set-tops by the middle of this year. Oddly, Verizon is one of the other big leaders in EBIF to date… though the telco is unlikely to get much enthusiastic attention at the Cable [...]

  5. [...] know that Verizon is already out of the gate with EBIF. With very little fanfare, Verizon began deploying EBIF applications for FiOS TV across Motorola set-tops last year. Interactive TV is already [...]

  6. [...] from a PC to a TV. Today Verizon announced that is has also launched personal video sharing. I saw this feature demoed a while back, and it’s good to see it now hit consumer [...]

  7. [...] Seidenberg was enthusiastic about progress on the interactive TV front, citing Verizon’s multi-room DVR service, interactive media guide, and growing library of widgets. He also mentioned something I [...]

  8. [...] we know Comcast deployed EBIF on Motorola set-tops last year, and Verizon started even earlier with EBIF embedded in a guide update that was pushed out at the end of 2008 and into 2009. Now that CableLabs has updated the EBIF spec, [...]

  9. [...] but so does innovation. Motorola set-tops have the capability to do a lot of things: VOD, DVR, multi-room DVR, IP integration, content portability to mobile devices, storage extension via external hard drives, [...]

  10. For one am glad for this informative blog. Now and again, the best knowledge originate from the articles you actually may not expect. Recently, I didn’t give whole lot thought to placing comments on web log entries and have left opinions even less. Reading through your interesting piece of writing, will definately inspire me to take action on a regular basis.

  11. [...] differs from Verizon and AT&T? At a basic level, the Verizon deployment is very similar, with FiOS Home Media DVR using Motorola’s hybrid QAM/IP set-tops with MoCA. AT&T’s U-verse offering, on the [...]

  12. [...] threw down the gauntlet early on with its FiOS IMG guide interface and features like TV widgets, a decent search function, and VOD cover art. However, the guide has [...]

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