Intel is going through a metamorphosis of sorts. We already know the company is moving out of the desktop motherboard business and now it's entering the television space.
Today, Intel’s Corporate VP & GM, Intel Media, Erik Huggers told attendees at the D:Dive Into Media 2013 conference that the world’s leading chipset maker is getting into the set-top/TV provider business. Huggers also confirmed that all content will be delivered to the consumers’ homes through the existing broadband Internet setup. The service, which will be launched under a new brand name, would provide the same type of bundled TV content just like the existing players.
Might be inside your next set top box
“We will deliver a new consumer electronics product under a new brand,” he said, adding that the device will have “beautiful industrial design” and will be powered by an Intel chip (what else?).
Huggers said: “We have been working for around a year now to setup Intel Media — it's a new division that includes a lot of people from outside of the company. We've hired people from Apple, Netflix, Google, BBC, etc. We're aiming to develop an internet television platform. My opinion is that not many of those rivals have cracked it.”
He further added: “For the first time, we'll deliver a few things to consumers. We'll deliver a new consumer electronics product under a new brand. It's associated with Intel, but you'll have to wait to hear what exactly that is. It'll be an Intel-powered device with beautiful industrial design. Where it really gets interesting is here — we're working with the entire industry.“
Huggers also revealed that the Intel box and allied content services will be launch “this year“. Ominously however, he said the first-generation box will not be the company’s “entire vision“, but will still go a long way towards that mark. Features are expected to include live television, on-demand content, and catch-up through downloadable episodes, and of course exclusive media. Huggers would not tell the conference what kind of apps would launch along with the box.
A camera will also be included in the box and will be used to target advertisements based on the viewership. The idea is that it would lead to less expensive access to content and Huggers gave an example. “When my family uses Netflix, we have a household account. My kids may watch programming geared towards them, and I'll watch programming geared towards me. If there's a way to distinguish who is watching what, advertisers can then target ads at the proper parties,” he said.
Naturally, this has raised some issues of privacy, but we figure in a world where personalised advertisements are already rife, this wouldn’t be a step into foreign territory.
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