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SPH, Ufinity to launch interactive TV service targeted at 18-40's - Jul 31, 2008 (BT)

BackJul 31, 2008

The Straits Times / The Business Times News On SPH

SPH, Ufinity to launch interactive TV service targeted at 18-40's

SPH Search teams up with NUS on R&D into methods for sourcing information.

By Diondi Tan
Jul 31, 2008
The Business Times

SINGAPORE Press Holdings (SPH) signed an agreement yesterday with interactive media provider Ufinity to launch RazorTV, a free interactive television service for young people.

RazorTV will offer live studio content and on-demand video through the Internet. News and lifestyle features will be aired. The target audience is aged 18 to 40, so the channel's approach will be informal.

Real-time interactivity will allow viewers to chat with presenters, interviewees and other viewers as shows are aired.

Shows will also be catalogued so they can be provided as video-on-demand for viewers to enjoy later.

Third-party developers will be encouraged to provide content and enhancements for RazorTV.

The Media Development Authority of Singapore (MDA) has issued SPH a Niche TV Licence for the channel. The licence allows for a TV service with fewer than 100,000 viewers and is valid for five years.

SPH and Ufinity signed their TV deal at yesterday's i.JAM Networking Session, which was also the setting for the signing of a research agreement between SPH Search - the company behind Rednano.sg - and the National University of Singapore (NUS) on new and more efficient ways to find information from various sources, including the Internet.

The project will run from August this year to August 2011. The investment by SPH Search is supported by the Interactive Digital Media R&D Programme Office (IDMPO), which is part of the Media Development Authority.

Project leader Professor Chua Tat Seng, from NUS School of Computing, said the researchers hope to find ways to provide better context and location-oriented answers for search engine users.

The project will focus on three goals: providing greater relevance in searches; better aggregation of search results; and giving users a richer experience by integrating video and images into results.

IDMPO executive director Michael Yap said yesterday that the growing number of commitments by local media companies to engage in interactive digital media R&D are a step towards developing Singapore as a leader in new media services.