Panasonic to bring IPTV into the mainstream
IFA Panasonic today pledged to bring IPTV to the masses: it's going to build net-delivered video right into its HD TVs.
Dubbed VieraCast, the system's an on-screen menu page that presents Panasonic partners' content that can be selected and set to play straight from the TV's remote control. Think of an AppleTV built into a TV.
Panasonic's VieraCast: IPTV in your TV
Partners listed today include EuroSport, Bloomberg, Google's Picassa and, of course, YouTube. More will come, the Japanese giant said.
Panasonic promised the content will be free and not require registration - only the purchase on a VieraCast-equipped HD TV. Programming will be localised for each nation and language.
TVs with VieraCast are set to go on sale in the spring of 2009, and the company pledged to extend the service with exclusive content the following year.
IFA 2008 complete coverage
all a man needs
is teh bigg blonde bouncing bunnie and the discovery channels. not crappy youturd
The concept is great - "one stop shop" or rather "one set shop"
What's required is modularity. Panasonic, please build a nice display device with the required interfaces. Also build DTT / Freesat / IPTV / PVR modules which can be purchased or not with the set. Others will build comparable modules to do the same - in fact, Sony will make the PS3 an all-in-one box I'm sure - however, consumers will have the choice of what to buy.
I have a Panasonic DTT TV and the UI is dire. I can't change it but I can get round this by buying a nice PVR (I'm waiting for a new set of PVRs to be launched which will export from their HDDs to a UBS2 key so I can share/receive content).
The display will last years, consumers will want to upgrade the other components more frequently. IPTV will evolve greatly, Panasonic are not a software company, I'd not want to be tied in to their software or content sources.
Re: home servers
The Pioneer TV I have already will browse to a home server. Using DNLA (a version of UPNP).
Although this is advertised to work with things like Windows Media Server you can also use any of a selection of Unix-compatible freeware DNLA servers to serve vanilla movie files i.e. no special lock-in. Happily saving the cost of an AppleTV like box.
I agree with the Viera free content being not that exciting.