AccessDTV Launches With A New Digital Product
Capitol Broadcasting Company makes it a mission to invest in the future and bringing digital television into homes via personal computer seemed an idea in keeping with that goal. CBC, therefore, has contributed to the start-up accessDTV who has that very aim. Raleigh-based accessDTV unveiled its new high-tech product this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
CBC has invested in accessDTV financially and is helping with marketing and development. CBC President & CEO Jim Goodmon has long been known as a strong advocate of digital television and has been a pioneer in the field. In fact, CBC station WRAL-TV plans to complete its conversion to digital later this month.
|AccessDTV specializes in digital television for personal computers; they plan to sell “digital media receivers” with Windows application software that will turn a PC into a receiver for analog and digital television signals. AccessDTV will also include
other services like an interactive program guide, personal video recording and real-time chats.
AccessDTV President & CEO Dewey Weaver explains, “Take a look at the marketplace and you will see three unmistakable trends-a move toward digital television, a convergence between the personal computer and the television, and an increasing demand for interactive
|AccessDTV is a universal TV tuner card
that installs easily into your Windows 98/ME/2000 desktop computer. It does not pull signals through the Web. It’s not Web streaming video. It’s real digital television transmitted from broadcasters in your area. AccessDTV receives and displays digital TV on your computer desktop. You can watch full-screen or re-size the accessDTV window to work, surf or email while you’re watching or listening. Changing channels is as simple as a click on the accessDTV onscreen remote (one remote you’ll never lose).
–From the accessDTV website
|entertainment. There’s a clear demand for the type of interactive digital broadcast experience that accessDTV will provide via the PC.”
Weaver founded accessDTV last year with Douglas Leech, now the company’s COO. The initial idea began as an effort to make digital television more affordable.
DTV Plus, another innovative CBC offshoot, has been working closely with accessDTV. DTVPlus has been pilot testing a system to send data and video through digital broadcast signal. “If there’s anything we’ve learned out of our pilot project, it’s that once they’ve had digital television on their computer, they don’t want to go back,” said DTVPlus Vice President & General Manager Sam Matheny.
Christina Dyrness, staff writer for the News & Observer quoted Jim Penhune, director of media and entertainment research for the Yankee Group as saying, “‘I think they are ahead of the game.'” She continued, “Though ideas for how to make television interactive are popping up everywhere, very few techies are looking at digital television.”
AccessDTV will order the first of its 1,000 PC cards (also called accessDTV) to start; a contract manufacturer in Pennsylvania will build the cards. At first available only for purchase only on the company website, accessDTV cards eventually will become available through retail outlets and may even be factory installed on certain PC’s, if all goes according to plan.