Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Operators To Miss Tru2way Deadline

Today is July 1 and without much fanfare, cable operators have acknowledged that they are not making today's deadline for tru2way delivery. Consumer electronic manufacturers seem to not be making a big deal although most new TV sets are being made with internet capabilities. Whether they work with the cable operator or not, these sets will be capable of downloading web videos, software, sports scores etc. The added appeal of two way must wait a little longer. "The tru2way specification, based on the Java programming language, lets cable operators deliver interactive TV applications and video programming to any compatible device, such as a set-top box or TV."

As TVs have gone all digital, cable companies have used the opportunity to convert analog signals to digital and require a cable box on TVs to get certain channels. In my home, those channels include TCM, MSNBC, AMC, Cartoon, and others. I expect soon that more will be added to the list. I need to add a box to every set. But I don't need nor do I want a big box in every room. I recently received a DTA device, but learned that while it gave me some channels, it wouldn't give me all my digital channels; Hallmark, yes, Disney or HBO, no. I am now waiting for a slightly bigger box that I am told can still "hide' behind my TV and not take up much space. This new box should have more capabilities.

I look forward to the day that I can work a TV without a box and still "talk" with my computer and other devices and provide complete access to all channels. The key for me is that it can be done without a box tethered to the TV set.

Hopefully, Tru2way technology is the first step to a home solution and interactivity. "The Consumer Electronics Association, which has continuously lobbied the Federal Communications Commission to implement rules requiring cable to open access to retail devices, declined to comment on the tru2way deadline. CEA 'did not sign on to this agreement and therefore we don't want to offer a comment,' said spokeswoman Meghan Henning." If Tru2way doesn't succeed, perhaps the CEA will.

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