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Viera Cast is a Smart TV platform by Panasonic that makes it possible to stream multimedia content from the Internet directly into select Viera HDTVs and Blu-ray disc players. Announced on Consumer Electronics Show in January 2008, Panasonic initially partnered with Google to make it possible for YouTube videos and Picasa Web Album photos to be used within the product, while Bloomberg News and The Weather Channel was also available. Beginning 2009, Amazon Video on Demand service was added. The first Viera HDTVs with Viera Cast, the TH-PZ850U series, appeared in May 2008. Panasonic introduced Netflix video streaming service and Skype to its Viera Cast line-up beginning with the 2010 model year. Panasonic TV's with Viera Cast from the 2008 or 2009 model years are not able to access Netflix or Skype. Mid-2010 a Twitter service was added.
The Viera HDTVs and Blu-ray players featuring Viera Cast have a built-in Ethernet interface; many models also have wi-fi and thus no external box or PC is required. The service is accessed via a single button on the HDTV remote. Viera is planning to extend the feature to three series of the company's 2009 Viera G, V and Z series of HDTVs. Panasonic also has three new stand-alone players and one portable Blu-ray player that supports the technology.
Availability of services differs per region / country / language. For example: In the Netherlands it's mostly English content/services, but also some German (Bild.de, Tageschau). In Australia 7plus is available on most models and Bloombergs sharemarket service will be discontinued from August 2011
The Viera Cast service is being replaced by a new platform called Viera Connect which is not backward compatible. The new service should improve the number of applications on offer as the platform is open to third party developers.
In 2012, Panasonic added the UK BBC iPlayer service for Viera Connect.
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- Panasonic plasma TV streams YouTube, accesses Picasa photos
- Presentation On Viera Cast + Basic Overview
- Fine Print from Panasonic's U.S. website about the availability of Netflix and Skype on Viera Cast model TV's from the 2008 or 2009 model years