The idea is that Yahoo! widgets will be available on your TV to allow for a much more interactive experience while watching TV. I first showed you some shots from IDF of the technology in my keynote live blogs (see the day 2 keynote on the first page there) including Flickr, Twitter and on-demand movie trailers all from an easy to navigate menu system.
Yahoo and Intel are trying to bring a new way to provide information and ads to TV. The Yahoo Widget Channel will be the first piece of software to take advantage of a new processor that Intel hopes to see integrated into the vast majority of TV sets being sold called the Intel Media Processor CE 3100.
Both of the companies are keen for consumers to understand that this is not another attempt to turn their TVsinto computers. Intel tried that approach already with its failed Viiv brand. What the Yahoo Widget Channel will do is cater to the TV viewer by allowing them to connect with other people, find more information about actors or shows they are watching and more.
The technology will be integrated into a number of TVs that will be seen at CES 2009 next month. Major electronics makers including Samsung, Toshiba, and others will be showing TVs at CES 2009 that integrate Intel’s new technology.
Yahoo and Intel both say that they are confident in the new technology and fully expect it to catch on, mostly due to the very low licensing requirements they demand for the technology.
Patrick Berry, VP of Yahoo’s Connected TV Initiative told CNET, “We do not see it [Yahoo Widget Channel] as a niche offering in a few high-end models. We see this as moving into the mainstream. In 2009, we’re going to see good penetration into the product lineups of the consumer electronics companies. Beginning in 2010, I think, you’re going to see Internet-connected consumer electronics devices dominating the lineup.”