Inview Technology

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For the BFI online history project "InView", see JISC Digitisation Programme.
Inview Technology Ltd
Broadcast and OTT solutions
Industry Media & Telecoms
Founded 1996
Rebranded 2006
Headquarters Northwich, United Kingdom
Key people
Nick Markham (Chairman)
Ken Austin (Vice Chairman)
Julie Austin (CEO)
Products Inview Inside, EPG, Video on demand, set-top boxes, analogue switch off
Number of employees
85
Parent Private company
Slogan "More than Just TV"
Website http://inview.tv/

Inview Technology (Inview Technology Ltd or simply Inview) is a UK based digital TV software company. It specialises in advanced EPGs,[1] interactive broadcast, IP services and solutions for Pay-TV and analogue switch off markets.[2] Their OTT TV platform allows television broadcast and internet content to be simultaneously accessible to the viewer. The company is based in Northwich, Cheshire, UK and is privately owned.

Inview have been involved in digital TV in the UK since the late 1990s, providing software for set-top boxes manufactured by Digifusion, Thomson and Sony, alongside the Teletext Extra EPG (later renamed Radio Times Extra). Nick Markham, Inview's Chairman, developed the concept of Freeview alongside the BBC and previously worked for Top-up TV.[3] By late 2016, Inview were enabling digital switchover for whole countries such as Nigeria (started in June 2016) and which will provide a Freeview / Freesat type broadcasting platform and implement a BBC style licence fee system to 30 million TV households.[4][5] Inview has also been awarded contracts by other countries undergoing Analogue Switch Off in Affrican, Asian and South American countries.

Inview Technology was appointed in March 2015 by National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) (run by the Government) to enable digital switchover from analogue[6] throughout the country; it will also provide a Conditional Access System, set-top box software and services including full EPG, Push Video-On-Demand, a range of broadcasting applications such as news, public service information and audience measurement services over the digital terrestrial and satellite networks in Nigeria.[7][8] Within a year of signing the contract, set-up boxes, created by Inview, were being distributed in Jos by the NBC, to give an additional 30 free channels to the customer.[9]

One of Mexico's leading pay TV companies, Dish Mexico, has appointed Inview to provide an end to end DTH ecosystem and broadcast software and services that will allow Dish Mexico to create an improved user experience using a DTH set-top box system.[10][11][12]

In 2014-5 their partners include Humax and Skyworth, China’s largest set-top box company,[13] and silicon partners include Mstar and Broadcom. They have signed a deal with Pico Digital, Inc. to develop the next generation set-top box for the Latin American market, as well as Dish Mexico.[14]

Martin Edwards (Honorary Life President of Manchester United) and Koen Van Driel (ex-CEO of Thomson and Grundig Set Top Box Divisions) joined the Board of Directors in February 2014.[15] In early 2016 Angélique Boissy, formerly manager at Skyworth and UTStarcom was appointed SVP Global Sales & Alliances, Raza Ansari became SVP, Asia Pacific and Diego Martinez spearheads the Americas.

History[edit]

Inview's roots go back to 1996 when Ken and Julie Austin built a team of engineers specialising in digital TV software. Inview provided a chip based EPG, broadcast data service and a digital TV software platform for the free to air terrestrial market. It provided the first Freeview EPG service and the first Freeview PVR for the UK. These new products provided an EPG that could be deployed on low‐cost set-top boxes without incurring additional costs. 10 million products have been deployed in the past 15 years and MORAR (Independent brand measurement company) established that the end-user satisfaction levels were as high as 96%.

It was one of the first companies to launch a broadcast TV listings service, known as 4TVInteractive. However, in 2010 Inview ceased support for this service and this affected a number of Digifusion, Inverto, Thomson and Sony Set-top boxes [16] and caused them to show only now and next information, rather than a full EPG.[17]

In recent years Inview platforms have appeared in retail outlets in a number of countries, including: Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Poland, Australia, Africa and the Middle East and in partnership with Farncombe in Latin America.[18][19][20] The platform recognizes which country it's in and shows content relevant to that country as well as international content.

Services[edit]

These include: whole country switch-over, OTT services, Broadcast solutions, Advertising, EPG, Video on Demand, Push-VOD#Push video on demand, Catch-Up TV, PVR, Legacy Upgrades for older boxes.

Liberator[edit]

A set-top box with 'Inview Inside' which allows terrestrial TV and simultaneous internet connection.

In October 2012, Inview developed "Liberator 3", an OTT cloud-based platform for Pay TV operators and telcos wishing to equip their customers with tailor made connected set-top boxes for broadcast and broadband internet content. The Inview platform has a small footprint (low initial cost), cloud based system (low maintenance cost for large volumes) and modular design (easy adaptation).

Inview’s latest platform provides viewers with access to movies on a transactional video-on-demand (TVOD) basis, and a library of on-demand TV content available on an SVOD basis including TV series, children’s programming, classic movies and music videos.[21] Inview have also created a content management system (CMS) to manage the platform and support the integration with an operator’s existing delivery equipment, subscriber and billing systems and provide additional services, such as multiscreen functionality, search and program recommendations.[22]

Broadcast solutions[edit]

In territories where the broadband infrastructure is underdeveloped, Inview offers a broadcast solution with advertising, Push-VOD, catch up TV and PVR. These services are delivered more cost-effectively on lower end set-top boxes using overnight broadcast bandwidth, meaning users can choose what they want to watch when they want to watch it. Operators are able to charge for interactive services and integrating advertising directly into the EPG and available applications.[23] As Internet services improve, Operators can easily upgrade each broadcast VOD user with an over the air update, to also offer connected functionality.[24]

Legacy upgrades[edit]

Inview's solution for existing (older) deployed set-top boxes is to offer applications including an EPG, TV apps and content discovery in very lightweight code that can run in devices with limited memory and processing power.[25] This improves the user's experience and introduces revenue generating services, through an over-the-air update, creating a unified UI and services across all platforms.[26] By June 2015 Inview had upgraded over 10 million legacy set-top boxes worldwide.[27]

Lolipop[edit]

Inview has developed the platform for a low cost HDMI dongle streaming device called "Lolipop" which is controlled through a smartphone using gesture control. This allows content such as VOD, live streamed channels and social networking apps to be viewed on a mobile device or on another TV without the need of a set-top box.[28][29]

Board members[edit]

In February 2014, Martin Edwards (Honorary Life President of Manchester Unites) and Koen Van Driel (ex-CEO of Thomson and Grundig Set Top Box Divisions) were appointed Board Directors of Inview Technology. At Thomson, Koen grew the company to be the World’s largest set top box manufacturer. Martin Edwards was Chairman of Manchester United for 23 years from 1980-2003 and holds the position of honorary life president.

Partnerships[edit]

In 2014 their partners included: Kaon, Humax, Skyworth, Broadcom, Alitech, Mstar, Novatek, Farncombe, Goosat, Hopeful, ATech, Giec, MTC and MICO.

Kaon and Inview recently collaborated to provide a free-to-air set top box solution with features such as Push-VOD, interactive services, advertising and early warning services alongside live digital channels, ideal for regions that are still to undergo analogue switch off.[30]

In previous years Inview has been in partnership with companies such as Top Up TV, the On Demand Group (ODG) and Teletext.[31]

Key Staff[edit]

As well as Markham, Ken and Julie Austin, staff also include:

  • Diego Martinez: SVP, Americas. Martinez has held senior VP roles at AT&T and Lucent Technologies, Americas President at UTstarcom, and most recently as COO at Logicalis.
  • Raza Ansari: SVP, Asia Pacific. Ansari has past experience of working with Conax and Zappware.
  • Mark Rooney: Past head of European operations for Terayon and Entone, CEO of Helsinki's VDSL Systems Oy and Pace plc.

The founder Ken Austin is a self-taught expert in the Electronic Programme Guide field,[32] who was Technical Director and Vice Chairman of Pilkington Micro-elec Ltd.[33] [34]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Inview Technology Partner with Novatek to Launch Innovative Digital TV Platform". sys-con.com Media. 2012-04-16. 
  2. ^ "Broadcast Asia 2014". broadcast-asia.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  3. ^ "Today's media stories from the papers". the Guardian. 
  4. ^ Digital TV Europ; August 2015. Accessed 10 August 2016.
  5. ^ Business Live, BBC World; interview with Nick Markham, Chairman of Inview technology; published Aug 17, 2016; accessed August 1, 2016.
  6. ^ "NBC Appoints Inview Technologies for Common Set-Up-Box System". talkmedianigeria.com. Talk media Nigeria. Retrieved 23 March 2015. 
  7. ^ "NATIONAL COMMON SET TOP BOX SYSTEM AGREEMNENT". nbc.gov.ng. National Broadcasting Commission of Nigeria. Retrieved 23 March 2015. 
  8. ^ apidtvnews.com; title: Nigeria takes delivery of first DTT set-top boxes; accessed 24 August 2016.
  9. ^ dailytrust.com.ng; title: Broadcast Digitisation: MTN launches TV service in Jos, offers 30 free channels Read more at http://www.dailytrust.com.ng/news/business/broadcast-digitisation-mtn-launches-tv-service-in-jos-offers-30-free-channels/148503.html#XsjTQajoIUw4Zc1T.99 by Hir Joseph, Jos | Publish Date: May 26, 2016; accessed 24 August 2016.
  10. ^ rapidtvnews.com; title: Dish Mexico selects Inview for DTH ecosystem; Tuesday, June 14th, 2016 ; accessed 24 August 2016.
  11. ^ http://nextvlatam.com/ Next TV news; title: DISH MEXICO APPOINTED INVIEW TO PROVIDE AN ADVANCED DTH ECOSYSTEM; June 16, 2016; accessed 24 August 2016.
  12. ^ digitaltvnews.net; title: Dish Mexico selects Inview for DTH ecosystem; June 14th, 2016; accessed 24 August 2016.
  13. ^ "Skyworth to integrate Inview services". advanced-television.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  14. ^ "Farncombe, Inview deliver OTT solutions to LatAm". 
  15. ^ "Inview Technology". Inview Technology. digitaltveurope.net/. Retrieved 9 March 2014. 
  16. ^ "InView EPG death - boxes". 
  17. ^ "InView EPG to be withdrawn - DigiFusion / Thomson PVRs affected - Digital TV Banter". 
  18. ^ Administrator (24 October 2011). "InView ready to switch on global market". menmedia.co.uk. 
  19. ^ Julian Clover. "Inview enters African market on Altech". Broadband TV News. 
  20. ^ "Farncombe, Inview partner on OTT services in LatAm". 
  21. ^ "Acetrax to launch online movie service with Inview platform". Digital TV Europe. 2012-01-20. 
  22. ^ "LatAm Market Briefing 2013". Joomag. 15 September 2013. 
  23. ^ "News - Inview to showcase its Broadcast Advertising and Push-VOD solutions at Broadcast Asia 2014". inview.tv/. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  24. ^ "INVIEW TECHNOLOGY". broadcast-asia.com. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  25. ^ "Inview gives new life to legacy STBs". advanced-television.com. Advanced Television Ltd. 
  26. ^ "ONLINE SHOW CATALOGUE". broadcast-asia.com. BroadcastAsia 2014. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  27. ^ "News - Inview and Irdeto deliver IP connected STB software and services for leading Thai pay TV operator – Inview". 
  28. ^ "Inview to reveal next generation OTT solution at TV Connect 2014". 
  29. ^ "Inview website". Inview Technology. Retrieved 14 April 2014. 
  30. ^ "Inview collaborates with Kaon". advanced-television.com. Advanced Television Ltd. Retrieved 22 July 2014. 
  31. ^ "Radio Times to run Freeview EPG". Broadband TV News. 2011-01-31. 
  32. ^ "Inview's own Oficial Website". Inview. 2012-03-19. Archived from the original on January 13, 2012. 
  33. ^ "Kenneth Austin: Semi-conductor integrated circuits/systems". Patent Fish. Retrieved 2012-04-02. 
  34. ^ Nakamoto, Michyio (23 October 1992). "Pilkinton arm wins chips deal". The Financial Times. p. 14.